Parts of the Whole

Ideal for Toddler, Preschool/Pre-K

A cardboard cutout of a heart with leaves in the background

This activity promotes development and learning by encouraging children to demonstrate flexibility in thoughts, actions, and behavior.

Materials Needed:

  • Cardboard or construction paper
  • Scissors

Participants: This activity is intended for adult/child interaction, and 2 or more participants/players.


(See photo examples on page 2 of the PDF)

  1. Cut a shape out of the cardboard or construction paper.
  2. Go on a walk with your child either outside or around the house.
  3. Stop and take notice of a whole object, such as a tree, the side of a house or building, a car, a fence, etc. Then place the cardboard template up to the object. and notice how the view changes when looking at small parts at a time.
  4. Discuss and ask your child open-ended questions on what they notice and feel when comparing the whole picture with small pieces.

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