Classroom Activity
Community Patchwork
Put pictures of children's favorite neighborhood places together — and make a community!

AGES 2–3


  • children's book with pictures of a neighborhood
  • construction paper
  • markers and crayons
  • masking tape

Objective: Children will think about the places in their neighborhood and then contribute a drawing to a group patchwork.


  1. Read a book about the different places and people in a neighborhood, such as one of those listed below. Talk with children about the buildings, stores, and other places in the book. How is the neighborhood in the book the same as and different from theirs? Encourage children to talk about the places they see and go to in their neighborhood

  2. Ask children to name a place in their neighborhood that they go to regularly — a grocery store, the post office, a bakery, a gas station, your school or center, and so on. If children have trouble naming places, ask them to think of what they see on the way to school in the morning.

  3. Give children construction paper, crayons, and markers. Invite them to draw a picture of the neighborhood place they mentioned. Label each child's drawing, writing the name of the place each child drew and any comments about the place he or she wishes to add.

  4. Tape children's drawings together, creating a square or rectangular patchwork of pictures. Hang the patchwork on the wall and invite children to point out and discuss all of the places in their community that they drew.

Spin Off

Create a movement floor game called "Neighborhood Twister." First, cover both sides of the patchwork with clear contact paper. Then make a spinner out of cardboard. Write the name of each place shown in the patchwork on the spinner. (Attach a craft stick to the spinner with a thumbtack to make an arrow.) Children can have fun placing their arms and legs on the different neighborhood places as you spin the arrow and call them out.

Children will explore many neighborhoods and the people in them as they share these books.

In the Middle of the Night
by Kathy Henderson

Jonathan and His Mommy
by Irene Smalls-Hector
(Little, Brown)

Whose Hat?
by Margaret Miller