Christmas bow magnetic play in preschool

Out of all the different holiday activities I have made for the children to play with, the magnetic bows and cookie sheets have been one of the most played with activities so far…

To make this activity, all you need to do is glue a small magnet onto the back of several Christmas bows. I used pretty small magnets and I removed the stickers from the bows.  In the process of play, I have had only one bow fall apart…

For the “gift boxes” I wrapped metal cookie sheets (that I bought earlier this year from the Dollar store) with wrapping paper.  When I first shared these with the children, I HAD to show them that the only thing under the wrapping paper was the metal cookie sheets that they play with all the time in our classroom.  This prevented most unwrapping of the cookie sheets but we had a few children that just couldn’t help but still take a peak:)

The children placed the magnetic bows on the paper covered cookie sheets and then walked around giving each other gifts every single day…

The dramatic play was endless. I listened in to two little girls pretending to have an entire Christmas party. They each took turns giving the other all the gifts and pretending to open them.  I heard, “Oh, I got a baby” and “Oh, I got another baby!”….

You will notice that the big magnetic board was out too for the children to add their magnetic bows on…

Lot’s of choices, lots of dramatic play, lots of fun with this simple activity!

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By |2017-03-28T22:28:12+00:00December 8th, 2011|

About the Author:

Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. has been working and teaching in the field of early childhood education for over 30 years. Deborah currently owns and teaches in her own part-time, private preschool called The Children’s Studio. Deborah’s deep passion for teaching and working with young children is documented and then graciously shared with millions of readers around the world through her blog and other social networking communities. Deborah believes that young children learn best through play and exploration and embraces this belief in all that she does in her own classroom so that she can effectively and passionately share rewarding, real- life, tried-and-true practices with other teachers, parents, and leaders across the field of early childhood education.


  1. jackie December 9, 2011 at 6:50 am - Reply

    Great idea, Deborah! I might have to make some of these!

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 9, 2011 at 8:46 am - Reply

      Thanks for stopping by Jackie:)

  2. Esther December 9, 2011 at 8:35 am - Reply

    Anything Magnetic is a hit @ our home! love these magnetic Christmas bows! We will be surely trying this! A paper Christmas tree taped to fridge and magnetic Christmas bows – my daughter will have hours of fun decorating the paper tree!

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 9, 2011 at 8:44 am - Reply

      Great idea to tape a paper tree to the fridge!

  3. Joan December 9, 2011 at 9:00 am - Reply

    Oh, I absolutely love this, Deborah! Great way to use all my leftover bows from many years – as I like my easy gift bags now !!! Love magnets anyway – and Target (in their dollar tree area) had some really cute magnetic snowmen and Christmas trees to assemble and we have played with these on our cookie sheets, too! The nice thing about your project is that I don’t have to go out and buy anything – Yahoo !! Merry Christmas !!!!!

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 9, 2011 at 9:06 am - Reply

      I knew I should head over to Target this week Joan!! I always love finding their goodies:)

  4. Melissa @ The Chocolate Muffin Tree December 9, 2011 at 9:24 am - Reply

    I love all your bow ideas….printing with bows and now magnetic bows! You are so creative!

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 9, 2011 at 9:35 am - Reply

      Thanks Melissa:)

  5. TheBargainBabe December 9, 2011 at 10:13 am - Reply

    Another great idea from you! How fun to get to play and pretend to wrap and unwrap presents. 🙂

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 9, 2011 at 10:59 am - Reply

      The children loved it!

  6. Centers and Circle Time December 9, 2011 at 4:44 pm - Reply

    Can’t blame the for wanting to sneak a peek:) That is neat-o!

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 9, 2011 at 8:43 pm - Reply

      Haha – neither can I:)

  7. Wendy Crislip December 9, 2011 at 9:18 pm - Reply

    Another one I can use for a birthday celebration week!

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 9, 2011 at 9:22 pm - Reply

      Oh – I like the way you are finding ideas but then adapting them for your birthday parties Wendy!!!

  8. [email protected]&Remember December 9, 2011 at 9:20 pm - Reply

    I love this idea! One more activity to prep for next week!

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 9, 2011 at 9:21 pm - Reply

      Yay – I am glad you will try it:)

  9. andiejaye December 10, 2011 at 2:36 am - Reply

    i think that Bear would love this!! i’ll have to grab a pack of bows!

  10. Suzanne Schlechte December 12, 2011 at 5:19 pm - Reply

    You just inspired me! I’m going to warap up some small boxes and some that can be opened. I’ll stick a little magnetic tape and my buddies can play “opening gifts”. They will be perfect for under their little tree! Thank you!

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 12, 2011 at 11:17 pm - Reply

      They would love getting to actually open the gifts too Suzanne:)

  11. Judy Lyon December 12, 2011 at 11:49 pm - Reply

    I tried these out with my afternoon class today and as I expected, they loved it! I added laminated cards (approx. 2″ by 3″) with magnets on the back of them and the children wrote who the present was for on them. I loved making it a literacy experience and the kids thought it was fun!

    • Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. December 12, 2011 at 11:51 pm - Reply

      Oh, I love adding their names!!! I may have to borrow that idea and add it to mine!! My kids would LOVE that!!

  12. Suzanne December 20, 2011 at 10:57 am - Reply

    It turns out that simply putting magnets on the back of my bows has been one of the best things I have done for my buddies! Who would have guessed? I let my buddies use them to decorate small Christmas tins and they played “presents” all day, then my granddaughter continued the play and it went on all evening!

  13. […] Teach Preschool  keeps the play simple with this magnetic bow activity. Ask parents to help you collect the bows or visit your local $2 shop to keep it budget friendly! […]

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