In today’s post, I want to share a list of 25+ body parts activities for toddlers that you can use for your upcoming human body theme.
What is the importance of doing body parts activities for toddlers?
It is important to start teaching children about their bodies from a young age because it allows them to develop their body awareness.
Bodily awareness helps children identify where their own bodies fit into space and how to relate to the objects and people around them. It also encourages children to be more in tune with their physical and emotional needs.
So to help you find ideas to use to teach your children about body parts and bodily awareness, I have drafted up a list of 25+ body part activities for toddlers.
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When should I start teaching my toddler body parts?
It is never too early for children to start learning their body parts.
As early as infants, you can start teaching your baby about the different body parts through singing silly songs like “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes,” reading board books and talking to your baby about the different parts of the body.
By doing these activities frequently, your child will begin to recognize the names of the body parts in no time.
One of our favorite activities with our one year old was to ask him where a certain body part is. Since we are a multilingual family, we would ask him in Spanish first and then in English second. Lennox would get so excited to point to the right body parts, and was even more excited when we clapped and congratulated him.
Anecdote aside, let’s dive into this ongoing list of 25+ body parts activities for toddlers. At the end of the list, you will find some more advanced activities that you can use with your older children.
BODY PART ACTIVITIES FOR TODDLERS
I will start this list off with some activities that you might already be familiar with or might have done when you were a kid!
These are all body part awareness interactive activities that you can use in your body parts preschool theme.
Further down in the list, I will include crafted activities by other parenting and educational bloggers that might make fun activities for your classroom, too.
1. Body tracing
Lay down on a piece of cardboard box or on large sheets of paper and draw the outline of your child.
Allow them to color and fill in their silhouette.
Maybe they will want to add a face, or dress their silhouette up in clothes. Let them get creative with it.
Then, you can ask your child to find a part on their body and they can go touch it on their outline.
2. Foot and Hand Painting
Foot and hand painting is messy but fun!
Use washable paint and let your child paint their foot and/or hands and stamp them onto blank white paper.
Talk with your child about their art. What different elements can be found on each limb? Toes, finger prints, the lines of the hand, etc.
You can also let your child practice tracing their own hand and feet for some fun fine motor play.
3. Q-Tip Bone Painting
With black construction paper, cut out your best human outline.
Then give white paint and Q-tips to your toddlers. Encourage them to paint bones onto the body with the Q-tips and white paint.
Fun Body Parts Activities for toddlers
4. Hokey Pokey
Hokey pokey is a popular kids game that involves putting limbs and body parts in and out.
All children stand in a circle and sing the following song, changing out the body parts each time. Children will also practice their lefts and rights.
You put your right hand in
You put your right hand out
You put your right hand in
and you shake it all about
You do the Hokey Pokey
and you turn yourself around
That’s what it’s all about.
Your toddlers will have a lot of fun dancing around to this popular tune!
5. Simon Says
Another fun and engaging way to teach preschoolers about the body parts is by playing Simon Says.
Simon Says is a children’s game where one person plays the role of Simon who gives out instructions. Children must follow those instructions only if Simon says “Simon says.”
For example: “Simon says touch your nose.”
In this case the kids should touch their noses.
But if Simon says “touch your nose,” they should refrain from touching their noses.
It is a fun game that will help children develop body awareness and it will also guide children in following and giving instructions.
6. Play Twister
Playing this classic game of twister will help kids with gross motor skills. Likewise, they will also learn color recognition AND they will practice using the left and right sides of their body.
7. Play Operation
Operation is a fun game that you can play with toddlers. It will teach your toddler about different bones and organs and their location. In addition, they will get to work their fine motor skills as they use the tweezers to extract the different body parts.
8. Human body puzzle
Puzzles are so beneficial for toddlers. They improve memory, problem solving skills, visual-spatial reasoning, enhance moods and much more.
They are a GREAT resource for the preschool classroom and an essential tool for learning body parts.
This magnetic human anatomy puzzle for toddlers will make a lovely addition to your home or school. Hang it up somewhere and watch your littles work together to piece back together the human body.
If you prefer wooden puzzles, try this Kidzland wooden My Body puzzle.
9. Mr. Potato Head Play
I’m sure we can all remember playing with classic Mr. Potato head, right?
Mr. Potato Head is a great way to get little hands working and learning the body parts all while developing symbolic play and language skills.
10. Play a mirror game
Pair your child with a partner. Have them mimic each other’s body movements.
11. Playing and singing body parts songs
Playing nursery rhymes and super simple songs is another good way to learn about basic body parts vocabulary.
Below I will leave a few links to some body parts songs with catchy tunes that you can use in your classroom today.
Fun songs about body parts:
- Head Shoulders Knees and Toes
- It’s Time to Wiggle
- If You’re Happy and You Know It
- The body parts song
- I Can Move My Body Like Anything
- Open Shut Them
12. Move like animals
Get your little learners moving like different animals. Talk about what body parts they use when they move like certain animals.
Have them hop like a bunny, crawl like a crab, jump like a kangaroo, waddle like a turkey, sprint like a cheetah.
You can even have each child pick an animal and have all the children create their own version of a way an animal walks.
This is a fun gross motor activity that will get your littles using and identifying new body parts.
13. Doctor play
In your classroom, or at home, set up a doctor’s office. Let your child pretend to be the doctor using this pretend play medical kit. Ask them questions about what they are checking so they can practice their body part vocabulary.
14. Read fun books about body parts
Learning about the names of body parts through books is super beneficial for your toddlers. They can connect new body part words through fun illustrations.
The Growing Book by Book blog has a comprehensive list of over 20+ informative body parts books for children that talk about a whole range of body parts, from the brain and bones, to poop and teeth! Fun!
15. Modeling with playdough
Use these printable human playdough mats by Parenting Chaos to teach the different body systems and organs.
These mats are a great way to introduce the various human systems to toddlers and preschoolers!
16. Skeleton Sensory Bin
Littles learn best through their hands and there is no better way to learn about the human skeleton than through this skeleton sensory activity.
17. Human Body Sensory Tray Activity
Here is a human body sensory tray by Messy Little Monster that will help your children learn more about how awesome the human body. This sensory tray uses fun water beads paired with a free human body printable.
Watch as your littles try to match up the different parts of the skeleton puzzle.
18. Body Parts Coloring Pages
Another fun way to learn about the body part is through these fun body part coloring pages by Living Life and Learning.
In this printable pack, you can find body parts such as the head, shoulders, eyes and more and at the bottom of each page there is a word tracing component where your toddler can practice writing the letters.
19. Learn about the anatomy of the hand
Do this DIY model robot hand STEM activity by MomBrite to help your children learn about the anatomy of the hand, including the bones, ligaments and muscles.
This activity includes lots of fine motor components that will have your children cutting, taping and lacing to form their model hand.
This fun activity by Human Body Learning will teach your toddlers about cells through a simple pizza-making activity. It may be the most delicious way to learn about the body!
21. Learn about the five senses with puppets
Download this five senses template by Simple Every Day mom and turn them into puppets that will teach toddlers about how we use the five senses in our everyday lives.
Related: Animal Popsicle Puppets
22. Five senses worksheets
Continuing on with the five senses theme, try out these five free printable five senses activity sheets that will teach children about the five senses and where we use them in our environment.
The Preschool Toolbox Blog invites your children to explore their family member’s eyes and their own.
This activity includes a free booklet and eye color cards where your child can draw the color of the eye for each family member and cut and paste the correct eye color for that family member in the booklet.
24. Egg Carton Toothbrush Painting
Teach your toddlers about the importance of oral health in this egg carton tooth brush painting.
The egg cartons make a great teeth activity due to their dips and bumps so children can see how they have to work their toothbrush in to “paint” all the little gaps.
This is a great hands-on activity to teach children how to brush their teeth properly.
I can’t wait to try this activity with my stubborn five year old who still loathes brushing his teeth!
25. Discover the different body parts in Spanish
If your young children are learning Spanish, pair up some of these activities with these body parts flashcards in Spanish.
Print out two copies of these free printable flashcards and play a partes del cuerpo matching game that will help your little kids with memory and vocabulary skills.
26. Magic heart activity for kids
Teach your littles about the inner workings of the human bodies with this magic heart activity by Taming Little Monsters.
It is made out of a homemade invisible ink made out of Turmeric and when your littles paint over it it will reveal the inner workings of our bodies. A great opportunity to talk to children about the heart and blood vessels.
Body Parts Activities for Older Kids
In this next section, I want to share a few activities to learn body parts for older kids!
These activities might be a little advanced for your toddlers, but maybe if you have older kids they can watch and get involved too.
- Learn about how the heart pumps with this STEM heart pump model by Little Bins and Little Hands. It is an excellent way to teach kids how our blood pumps through our hearts. They will also learn new vocabulary like valves, chambers and ventricles!
- Learn about the muscles of the hand with this STEM Muscular system hand craft for kids by Living Life and Learning.
- Discover the lungs by making a lung model in just six easy steps with Human Body Learning. Your student will learn about healthy and unhealthy lungs, and what will happen if there is a blocked windpipe. What a super cool experiment.
- For a fun fine motor activity for older kids, try this digestive system maze by Little Ladoo made out of cardboard. This activity will teach about the body’s digestive tract and how our food is broken down.
- Learn about how stomach acid works with this scientific experiment by Adventures in a Messy Life.
Well I hope you found some body parts activities for toddlers to use in your classroom!!
Additional Preschool Resources:
- 20 Color Learning Activities for Preschoolers
- 20+ Fun Ways to Learn the ABCs With Your Preschooler
- 24 + Winter Printable Activities for Preschoolers