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  • location
  • off
  • position
  • where


  • Teach the children the fingerplay, "Four Little Leaves." Discuss jumping and falling off the leaves. Ask questions to find out what the children know about the word off.
    Four Little Leaves
    Four little leaves high in a tree,
    One fell off and then there were three.
    Three bright leaves covered in dew,
    Another jumped off, and then there were two.
    Two trembling leaves looking for fun,
    "I'm off," said two, and then there was one.
    One last leaf hanging by a thread
    Said, "Jumping off is something I dread."
    Then shoosh went the wind and off flew the leaf.
    Now the jumping off is over. What a relief!
  • Tell the children that today they will be learning about how the word off is used to describe the location of things.
  • Read your favorite book about spatial relationships to the children or select a book from the Story Circle Suggestions below to check out of the library and read.


  • Hey! Get Off Our Train by John Burningham
  • Lights On! Lights Off! by Angela C. Santamero
  • On and Off by Kate Davis
  • Pants Off First! by Ruth Ohi


  • Make "The Three Billy Goats Gruff" flannel board story (Appendix p. 561-567).
  • Gather plastic jars and bottles.
  • Cut out a construction paper heart and tape it to the bottom of a tray or tub.

Language Enrichment Choices*

Encourage the children to sit in a circle and take off their shoes. Discuss their shoes being off, and then talk about other things that they take off, such as their coats and mittens. Talk aboutturning off the lights and water after we use them.

Use the word off in a sentence. For example, "I turn off the lights when I leave a room."

Present "The Three Billy Goats Gruff" flannel board story (Appendix p. 561- 567)."What did the troll tell the goats to do?"

Teach the children the American Sign Language sign for off (Appendix p. 436).

* Toddlers and twos present a wide range of developmental needs, abilities, and interests. For each learning area, select among the following activity and experience choices that are appropriatefor the children in your care.

Physical Development Choices

  • Encourage the children to act out "Five Little Monkeys." Discuss the monkeys falling off the bed.

    Five Little Monkeys
    Five little monkeys jumping on the bed.
    One fell off and bumped her head.
    Mamma called the doctor, and the doctor said,
    "No more monkeys jumping on the bed!"

    Repeat, subtracting a monkey each time. You can say the rhyme using fingers or let children act it out.

  • Play Musical Freeze. Have the children dance freely until the music is turned off. When the music stops, they should freeze until the music starts again.
  • Play the following game after presenting "The Three Billy Goats Gruff" flannel board story. Make a bridge out of blocks. Encourage the children to walk across the bridge saying,"Trip, trap, trip, trap" as they walk. You be the troll and say the verse below. After you have said the verse, chase the "little goats" around the room.

    Who is traipsing on my bridge?
    Trip, trap, trip, trap! Get off my bridge!
    No one should be traipsing there.
    Get off! Get off! Don't you dare!

    Social and Emotional Development Choices

    Invite the children to take off their shoes. Play "This Little Piggy" with their toes. "Which piggy do you like best?""Which piggy is the largest?"" Which piggyis the smallest?"

    This Little Piggy
    This little piggy went to market, (wiggle big toe)
    This little piggy stayed home. (wiggle second toe)
    This little piggy had roast beef, (wiggle middle toe)
    This little piggy had none. (wiggle fourth toe)
    And this little piggy cried,
    "Wee-wee-wee!" all the way home.
    (wiggle little toe)

    Talk with the children about making sure to turn off the water when they are done washing their hands.

    Sing "Little Ant Hill" below to the tune of "Dixie.""Why would someone want to hurry to get his foot off of an anthill?"

    Little Ant Hill
    Oh, I stuck my foot on a little ant hill.
    The little ant said, "You better be still.
    Take it off, take it off.
    Remove it."
    Well, I didn't take it off and the little ant said,
    "If you don't take it off, you're gonna wish you had.
    Take it off, take it off."
    Ouch! I removed it.

    Cognitive Development Choices

    • Give the children plastic jars and bottles and encourage them to take off the lids.
    • Invite the children to drop beads on a carpet square. Discuss how many of the beads land off of the carpet. Does anyone notice that the easier they drop the bead, the more likely it is to stay onthe carpet square?
    • Make a line of masking tape on the floor and invite the children to walk on the line on their tiptoes without falling off. Does anyone fall off the line?
    • Glue a construction paper heart inside a shallow tray or plastic tub. Cover the bottom of the tray with a small amount of sand. Provide a pastry brush and invite the children to brush the sandoff the heart. Can anyone guess what is under the sand before they start brushing?
    • Invite the children to peel off pieces of masking tape from a tray or tabletop. "Is it easy or difficult to remove the tape?"
    • Problem-solving suggestion: Place a feather on a table and invite the children to think of ways to get the feather off the table without touching it. They can blow the feather or fan the featheroff the table. Discuss the options.
    REFLECTION ON THE DAY Ask the children to tell you something they learned about off today. Ask the "not yet talkers" to show you something that can be turned off.
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