I don’t know about you, but I find summer to be one of the most refreshing times of the year. As the busyness of the school year comes to an end, it is nice to take some time to reflect and relax. One of our favorite ways to relax during the summertime is to play board games! Social emotional learning activities like this Preschool Emotions Printables Summer Theme Board Game are the perfect way to take advantage of the slower pace of summer and spend some extra time connecting with your child.

– Life Over C's Photo collage showing a crab-themed emotions board game.

Recommended Grade Level:

Crab Emotion Board Game Supplies:

  • Paper
  • Laminating Supplies
  • Scissors

This board game is not only a fun activity to do with your child, but it will also help with social emotional development for preschoolers.

The more opportunities children have to share their emotions and talk about how they are feeling, the better prepared they will be to handle their emotions in real world situations!

– Life Over C's Surprised crab game card in the discard pile.

Why Should I Use Emotional Development Activities For Preschoolers?

Preschool activities for emotional development are not always given a lot of attention, but they are incredibly important for the development of children!

It is hard to navigate the world as a preschooler, especially when you have lots of feelings that you don’t always understand.

– Life Over C's Crab themed emotions board game.

By giving your child the opportunity to share and talk about the big feelings they may be experiencing, you are promoting social emotional development and setting them up for success in the future!

Social emotional activities for preschoolers are a wonderful way to talk about feelings, share experiences, and practice how to handle emotions before your child encounters a challenging social interaction that they don’t know how to respond to.

Playing games where children have to share experiences and talk about their feelings can also help provide you with some insight into why your child is reacting a certain way, or help you understand how to deal with any challenging behavior.

– Life Over C's Child's hand holding a proud crab emotions card.

How To Use This Feelings and Emotions Preschool Board Game:

Print the game board and crab emotion cards onto white card stock. If you have thick scrapbook paper around your house, you may want to consider printing the emotions cards onto that so you can’t see through the cards.

Laminate the game and cards to help make them more durable and last longer.

Cut out the crab emotion cards and sand castles. Stack them into a pile and place it face down.

Grab something to use as marker pieces for each player. You can use counting chips, rainbow bears, mini erasers, or another small manipulative.

The first player will draw a card from the pile and move their marker piece to the matching emotion picture.

See if your child can identify the emotion face the crab is making.

If you child draws a sand castle card they should move to the closest sand castle (even if it means moving backwards) and respond to the question on the card.

To win, a player must draw a sand castle as their last card and finish on the last sand castle on the board.

Other Ways To Use This Crab Activity For Preschoolers about Emotions:

  • Play charades with the crab emotions cards and see if your children can guess the different emotions that are being shown. This is a good activity for practicing reading expressions and figuring out how people are feeling based on their body language and facial expressions.
  • Print out some emotions pictures for preschoolers and see if your child can match the pictures to the emotions cards.
  • There are so many great books for teaching emotions to children. Pair this emotions activity for preschoolers with some of these super cute preschool books about emotions and feelings!

Do you love this activity?

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– Life Over C's Photo collage showing a crab-themed emotions board game.
– Life Over C's Child is holding up a card with a picture of an excited crab and an emotions board game is in the background.
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author avatar
Kim Staten Owner and Curriculum Designer
Kim Staten is a mother of four children ages 20, 19, 16, and 12. Kim has taught at the preschool, kindergarten and early elementary levels for 16 years. With extensive experience working with special needs children, including her own children with special needs (Rett Syndrome, autism, anxiety, and ADHD), she creates hands-on curricula and activities that are great for working with children of all abilities in the classroom and at home. Hands-on, accessible activities are her passion. 

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