Busy Boxes are a fantastic way to give your preschool, pre-k, or kindergarten kiddos an opportunity to practice skills you’ve taught them in class. In a face-to-face learning situation, you would have them available in containers for your kiddos to use during centers, stations, or transition times. BUT… in this new distance learning world that we are living in now, digital busy boxes are an absolute MUST HAVE! And since I recently found out that my district will be online only for the first six weeks, I figured I’d better get busy getting them made!
What are busy boxes?
Busy boxes are one of my very favorite things to use with preschool, pre-k, or kindergarten kiddos! When we get to actually be in the classroom, my busy boxes live in brightly colored photo cases. I print, laminate, and cut the pieces to the activity and add whatever else is needed to the box. (Sometimes they need play dough, pom poms, dry erase markers, or mini erasers.) Busy box activities are meant to give your kiddos independent practice with skills you have already covered in your whole-group or small-group instruction. But the beauty of that is the activities can be completed independently! So you can use them during centers, transition times, or for early finishers. They are very versatile! You can check out my Busy Boxes Bundle if you’re going to be teaching face to face and need the real deal!
How are digital busy boxes different?
Well… the answer is pretty simple really. They’re digital! I just looked at each one of my original busy boxes and created a new version that can be used in multiple online platforms! You can use them for online instruction, distance learning, or in the classroom with a projector or smart board. You can use them with your whole class, with a small group, or for independent practice. You can use them as part of a lesson or as homework. Whether you are teaching online or not, digital busy boxes are a great way to connect what you are doing in class to the parents and what they’re doing with your kiddos at home!
My plan for these activities is to use them in Google Classroom. I can choose a busy box activity that reinforces what we’re currently learning and assign it to my kiddos. The format that’s compatible with Google Slides is interactive, so as they complete the activity, the moveable pieces will stay where the kiddos put them. I can go back in when they’re done and check their work!
What skills are covered in these digital busy boxes?
That’s a great question! My Back-To-School Digital Busy Boxes cover letters, numbers, colors, and shapes! Here’s a quick peek at each one! (You can click on any of the file names or the images to go check out these resources in my TPT store!)
In this activity, your kiddos just move the arrow onto the small crayon that is the same color as the large one! Ten different colors are included.
To complete this digital busy box, your kiddos simply drag the crayon to the puzzle with the matching color! Ten colors are included, and there are 10 slides with a total of 30 puzzles!
These counting puzzles are super simple and super fun! Each crayon box is missing a number, and your kiddos need to count the crayons to find the right one!
OK… I know this one doesn’t involve counting crayons. But it is a crayon themed counting activity! It’s called Crayon Counting because its printable counterpart does involve counting crayons. Anyway… to complete this activity, your kiddos just move the colored dots to make the ten frame match the number.
This digital busy box is all about matching uppercase and lowercase letters! Your kiddos just find the crayon that matches the letter on the crayon box and drag it over!
To complete this digital busy box activity, your kiddos drag the letters to the right bus. Uppercase letters go on one bus, and lowercase letters go on the other!
Finding a way to trace letters digitally was a little bit of a challenge. I’m not going to lie… But, this is what I landed on! The crayons move so your kiddos can grab one and drag it to trace the letters. The crayons won’t make a line as you trace with them, but the motion can still happen, and that’s the whole point! Plus, the bright colors and cute graphics are just F-U-N!!
This fun activity has three slides for each number. On the first slide, they count dots on dice. On the second slide, they count finger. And on the third slide, they count dots on a ten frame. Once they find the crayon that matches the number on the box, they drag it over!
OK… how can you not love these cute school buses? Each bus hase wheels that are a different shape. Your kiddos find the shape that matches and drag the arrow to that shape. And… as a little bonus, I’ve included an extra slide for diamond/rhombus. Just delete the slide that has the shape name you do not use before you send it to you kiddos!
This last digital busy box will probably be your favorite because it’s in my TPT store as a FREEBIE!! It’s just like the letter tracing activity, but in this one your kiddos are tracing… that’s right! You guessed it! Numbers!!
Now, I know some of you are like me because I just have to have ALL. THE. THINGS!! And I can never resist a good bundle! So, for you… all of these digital busy boxes are bundled together to save you some money!
And I know that a lot of us are going to need both digital and physical resources this year. I mean… there’s a good chance we’ll probably flip flop from one to the other multiple times. Am I right? So, I’ve also got a bundle with all of my printable AND digital back-to-school busy boxes!
If you want to see more about how I use my printable busy boxes in my classroom, I’ve got some posts you should go check out!