Sunday, July 31, 2011

Mini Unit - Mickey Mouse

I have to admit, I don't usually buy into the whole mainstream commercialism thing when it comes to my classroom. It just seems a bit distracting to me. But, I decided to bend a little just this once and I created this Mickey Mouse themed mini unit for James. He's digging Mickey right now (and truth be told I'm a big Mickey fan, too!) and I figured if I could make the activities educational, why not let the Mouse come over for a visit? :)

I should note that because Bermuda has limited supplies when it comes to specialty items, I made many of these materials myself. In the rare case that I did purchase items, they were cheaply found at our local dollar store, thrift shop, and party supple store.

~an overview~

Here's a closer look at what's inside this unit:
Mini Sensory Tub (Sensorial/Language). I thought about making a full size version of this tub, but with only 3 weeks left to go in this pregnancy, I just haven't the energy. I used red pony beads and black marbles and foam squares as the main filler. Also included are bottlecaps (dollar store), buttons, letter beads to spell with, poms, tiny Mickey Mouse buttons, a couple of vellum stars, and a Pluto Pez dispenser.

Telling Time (Math). I made this myself by using the back of a Mickey Mouse paper plate. I purchased the button embellishments from a scrapbooking store (years ago) and then cut the clock hands out of cardstock and pinned them loosely to the plate with a brad.

Lacing (Practical Life). Another use for the paper plates - I simply punched holes around the perimeter and added a shoelace.

Pin Punching (Practical Life). I create the Mouse heads in Word and printed a few of them so James can repeat the work as desired. I provided a sheet of black foam paper to absorb the pin. I've been asked a zillion times about the jumbo pins I use - I found them at our local dollar store over a year ago, but I've seen them available on Amazon as well.

Dominoes (Math/Language/Sensorial). These dominoes are another dollar store find and boy are they teeny-tiny!

Bingo (Language/Sensorial). Two kinds - one is homemade and involves reading, the other is a thrift store find and focuses on shapes. I had already created the homemade version (by using clip art), but couldn't pass up the other one when I found it for only 25 cents.

Worksheets (Language/Math/Art). I made all of these myself using free clip art I found online. While I would normally share these with you as PDF's, I don't feel comfortable doing so this time around. I'm fearful of some unknown copyright I'd be breaking if I shared them. Sorry!

Books (Language). Going through our bookcases I found only these three Mickey Mouse books. In fact, these were MY books when I was young and I *think*, perhaps with the exception of The Sorcerer's Apprentice, they're now out of print.

Activity Books (Math/Language/Art/Just For Fun!). Birthday gifts from a couple of years ago.

Manipulatives. I found these at our local party supply store. I envision them being used for sorting, sequencing, math, storytelling, and whatever else James comes up with. Oftentimes I will just put materials out there and sit back to see what HE decides to do with them. His ideas are usually much more creative than mine!

Stick Puppets. I used some of the above manipulatives and pasted them to popsicle sticks. Again, I'm curious to see what James will do with these.

Memory/Matching Game (Sensorial). These are paint chips, which I believe you can find at most large home-retailers. The ones in the photo were a gift from my sweet bloggy friend, Susan. :)

Pasting Practice & Collage Making (Practical Life/Art). The paper and stickers are several years old and from my scrapbooking stash. I cut up various aspects of the papers and it'll be up to James to arrange them however he'd like.

Cutting Practice (Practical Life/Math). As with all of our sticker cutting strips, James will need to cut in between the stickers. He can then use the snipped pieces for a sequencing or sorting activity.

All packed up and ready to explore!

~Click the button below to view more of our mini units.~

~Thank you for your comments!~


  1. I know what you mean about including licensed toys in your classroom! But you did a fantastic job! You just proved that you don't need to spend a lot of money buying their toys and supplies to get the idea across!
    ~ joey ~

  2. Ohh one of my favs - I love this!

  3. Very fun!! I am sure James will love it!!

  4. Another wonderful post!! You are amazing and soo NOT lazy!!

    The Mickey Mouse paint chips I found at Home Depot. They have every color of the rainbow there!!

  5. Love this Mini-unit! Just a heads-up for anyone else looking for the jumbo push pins, I've seen them at Walmart & Target, too.

  6. We have a trip to Disney coming up in October. This will be a really fun way to get some learning in with all the anticipation!

  7. I thought your homemade clock was brilliant. I'm going to have to keep an eye out for some cute buttons.

  8. Lovely ideas dear. Loved the puppets the most. I had these long back. Looks like I have to buy these again. Good luck for your new baby.

  9. Wow, my girls who are HUGE Disney fans will love this! Thanks for the great idea!

  10. This is so fun! Just a quick long did it take you to "train" (for a lack of a better word) James in getting things out and putting them away-mainly one thing at a time? I would love to make some of these units, but am not sure how to go about training my daughter on the whole thing of getting one out at a time, and putting it all back when she's done without mixing.


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