Goodnight Moon Activities

Goodnight Moon, by Margaret Wise Brown, is a beloved favorite bedtime story, but it is a fun story to share any time of the day. Enjoy this story outside of the book as you engage in activities that make the story personal.

First, you must know the story. If you are unfamiliar with Goodnight Moon, listen to it here before you plan your lesson. Then, share the story with children. As you read the book, take advantage of the rich illustrations drawn by Clement Hurd. As you name each item in the room, ask the children to point out the items. This will keep them focused on the details of the story. As you close the book, look around the room. Ask the children what they would say goodnight to, making sure each child has a turn to speak.

Another idea that will help children participate and remember the story will require one metal cookie sheet and cut-outs of the items in the book for each child. You can cut pictures from coloring books or magazines, mount them on construction paper and cut them out again. As you read the story, the children will pick out the appropriate picture and add it to the metal sheet.

Write another version of the book. Have each child contribute an idea of what they would want to say goodnight to and add it to one page. Write the words below the picture. Laminate the pages of the book or cover them with clear contact paper. Punch holes and use notebook rings to bind the book together. 

After reading the book, give the children coloring sheets for the nursery rhymes mentioned in the story. Goldilocks and the bears, the cow jumping over the moon, kittens with mittens and a moon are found on-line.

Just as mittens and kittens rhyme, other words in the book rhyme too. Use the book to teach rhyming words. Use items in the story, things like mouse, clocks, star or air, and match them with other things in the book or with words they already know.

Print a copy of the Goodnight Moon book cover. You can find one here. Laminate the picture and cut it into several large pieces. Give the pieces to the children and let them reconstruct the cover.

Make a sensory bin for Goodnight Moon. Fill a tub with items found in the book; add items like bunnies, stars, bowls or chairs. Fill the bin with rice and give your children spoons or let them use their hands to find the items.

Children love Goodnight Moon so use their interest to teach them more. Enjoy the activities and help them become more observant, express creativity, learn about rhyming or figure out puzzles. They won’t even realize they are learning.