Show and Tell: 35 Ideas for Early Learners


A boy wearing a backpack holds a jar of grass with a plastic grasshopper in it.The fall morning air is arriving, routines are settling, and kids are adjusting to back-to-school routines. And with that brings one of the long-standing traditions of show and tell. Show and tell dates back to as early as the 1950s and brings team building and communication into the classroom.

As a PreK mom, I recently got to experience my first show-and-tell moment with my daughter. I chuckled as I tried to remember what I always brought for show and tell when I was her age in my own early years of learning. Much like the 90s comedy show Kids Say the Darndest Things, humor meets expectations when it comes to what most kiddos want to bring versus what we suggest they bring.

As I shared this concept with my daughter, her four-year-old heart beamed with excitement when I told her she could bring something from home to share with her fellow classmates! Although she spewed out random things like her bicycle or ice-cream kitchen playset, we settled for some things much smaller in size and a little story to tell. We wanted to allow her the creative space to be her own little unique self, and be sure to not dull out her sparkle in the process.

So I compiled a list of 35 fun ideas your early learner can bring to share for their own show and tell.

Ideas for Show and Tell

Creative Self: Items About Themselves

1. A baby picture

2. A family photo

3. A photo of their pet

4. An object of a hobby they have (My daughter brought a soccer medal from her summer season.)

5. A favorite snack of theirs

6. A favorite stuffie they use at bedtime or during moments of anxiety (This is GREAT for self-expression and talking about feelings.)

7. A favorite book for reading

8. Something from their favorite school subject

9. Something from their favorite sports team or someone they admire

10. Something that begins with the same letter as their first name

11. A gift they have gotten for a birthday and tell about the special person who gave it

12. An item with their favorite color on it

Creative Outdoors: Items from Trips & Adventures

13. A photo of a family trip or vacation they’ve taken

14. A ticket stub from a vacation or trip (plane, train, etc.)

15. An object from a nature walk or park they’ve visited

A little girl holds up a container of rocks for show and tell.
Outdoor rock collection!

16. An item from the beach (fossil, shell, shark tooth)

17. A picture of a flower or veggie from their own plants and garden at home

18. An item that an explorer would use (map, flashlight, etc.)

19. A drawing of an activity they did outside

20. A fact about or photo of their favorite animal

21. A packet of seeds for something that can grow

Creative Season: Items for Fall & Holidays

22. An item from the fall season (Bring on the pumpkins!)

23. Something for the Halloween season (costume idea or photo of their costume)

24. Something to be thankful for

25. Tell about their favorite Thanksgiving food or share a drawing of a Thanksgiving tradition they have

26. A holiday decoration such as a tree ornament or ornament they made

27. A favorite fall or holiday sweater

28. A favorite mug for hot cocoa

29. A photo visiting Santa or a letter to Santa they wrote

30. A favorite holiday gift they’ve received and tell about who gave it to them

31. A favorite Christmas season tradition or photo from a past holiday

A little girl constructs a gingerbread house to share for show and tell.
Gingerbread house tradition.

32. A favorite holiday song or have the teacher play it

33. A favorite blanket for staying cozy

34. A favorite holiday movie and why it’s their favorite

35. An object that reminds them of winter

Does your child have a favorite idea for show and tell at school? Share with us in the comments below!

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Misty Barrett
Misty is a Cincinnati, Ohio native along with her husband. They moved to the area in early 2018 after getting married in the late summer of 2017. Having not been to the area before, they dove right in and now call it home. They also have a spunky three-year-old daughter. Misty is a blood cancer survivor, after getting diagnosed while pregnant, and undergoing a stem cell transplant. She enjoys being a stay-at-home mom and a small business owner. You can find her crafting, baking, and creating any fun DIY she can try. She enjoys discovering all things local from food, sites, and beaches with her husband and daughter. A family beach day is always a good day to her! Keep connected with Misty on Instagram @mistbarrett