This simple Chicka Chicka Boom Boom play set is a fun hands-on way to explore the alphabet and retell this popular children’s book! I’ve also included directions for kids to make their own mini play set, complete with free printable letters.
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This post was originally published on May 6, 2014 and has been updated.
I’m so excited to be teaming up again this week with some wonderful kid bloggers to bring you the newest post in the Preschool Book Club Series! This week’s book is Chicka Chicka Boom Boom! (If you missed last week’s post, be sure to check out our subtraction math game to go with the book, Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons!)
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Make Your Own Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Play Set
Back when I was a classroom teacher, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom was always a class favorite! The kids loved reading it over and over.
The repetition and rhyme of the text encourages the children to say the story right along with you, and it’s a great story to use when practicing letter recognition.
Lucy has always loved this story, and Theo is just now becoming a fan at two years old. To build off their excitement for the book, I created a super simple play set to go along with it. It’s so easy to make and inspires all kinds of creative play, while also incorporating hands-on learning with letters of the alphabet.
Later on in the post, you’ll find directions for kids or students to make their own Chicka Chicka Boom Boom mini play set using toilet paper rolls (complete with a free printable)!
Materials for Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Play Set
- Empty paper towel roll
- Construction paper (We used two different shades of green.)
- Liquid glue
- Paper bowl (We used 12 oz. Target brand paper bowls similar to these.)
- Tempera paint in brown and green
- Wooden letters (like these) or magnetic letters
Directions for Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Play Set
1. To start you’ll need an empty paper towel roll and a paper bowl.
2. Once the paint has dried, it’s time to glue them together. Make a few snips around the top of the paper towel roll and fold the resulting tabs down.
Place glue on the tabs and glue the paper towel roll to the bottom of the paper bowl. Set it aside to dry.
3. Cut out various leaf shapes from your green construction paper using scissors.
4. Glue them around the outside of the paper bowl. Set it aside to dry.
Once it’s dry you’re ready to play!
You’ll need letters to use with this play set. I painted some wooden letters (similar to these) from my local craft store. You could also use any plastic, magnetic, or felt letters you already have at home. (If you’re able to find lowercase letters to use with the set, that would be best so it goes more closely with the story. I was unable to find lowercase letters, so we used uppercase letters.)
Theo loved reenacting the story using the letters. He’d make them go up the tree using his hand and reciting parts of the story.
Once there were quite a few in the bowl at the top, he’d knock the tree over yelling, “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom!”
He’d pick each letter up one by one giving it a kiss as he placed it back on the table.
He had so much fun!
Later I added homemade playdough to the Chicka Chicka Boom Boom play set. It was fun to see how they incorporated the playdough into their creative play.
Lucy found she could use the playdough to hold up the wooden letters. Such a fun way to practice spelling words!
They used the playdough to make piles of letters. Lucy loved hiding them inside the playdough and having Theo find them. He’d yell out the letters he found!
Making the Mini Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Play Set
The mini play set would be perfect for students to make in class and take home to enjoy!
Materials for Mini Play Set
- Toilet paper roll
- Small bathroom paper cup (Like these Dixie 3 oz. bathroom cups)
- Tempera paint
- Liquid glue
- Construction paper
- Free printable alphabet
2. Once the paint has dried, it’s time to glue the cup and toilet paper roll together. The paper cup actually fits nice and snug inside the toilet paper roll. I just added a bit of glue around the bottom edge of the cup before placing it inside the toilet paper roll to be sure it would stay secure.
3. Cut out paper leaves from your construction paper and glue them around the cup.
Now you have your tree! Print out the free printable alphabet and cut out the letters to complete your mini play set.
You can use the mini play set to reenact the story or to practice letter sounds. Lucy loved holding up one letter at a time for Theo. Once he said the sound correctly, she’d place it in the tree. Theo loved putting all the letters in the tree and making them fall out just like in the story!
More Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Activities
We’ll be back next Tuesday with our next contribution to the Preschool Book Club series. In the meantime, be sure to check out all the creative Chicka Chicka Boom Boom activities from the other participating blogs!
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Letter Learning Activity from Sugar Aunts
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Letter Learning Activity for Kids from Frogs and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Homemade Alphabet Soup from Homegrown Friends
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Sensory Bin from Mama Papa Bubba
Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Alphabet Bean Bag Toss from Meri Cherry