As a bonus, this activity was less about the “fishing” and more about a little learning that I wanted to sneak in.
While Travis slept, I cut lots of fish from construction paper – you can use a template or just freehand the shapes.
Some of the fish received a letter, and others a shape, and then each one got a paper clip to make it magnetic.
For the wand, tie yarn to a wooden dowel, and secure the yarn with tape. Tie the other end of the yarn onto a magnet. I have a craft stick with a magnet glued to the tip, which makes for sturdier “fishing“, so used that here.
Now it was time to go fishing! (Or, as we like to say in this vegan household, “rescue” the fish).
For kids just learning the alphabet, you can simply ask them to find any letter at random. For older kids, this is a great name recognition game. We found T-r-a-v-i-s in both caps and lower case!
Next up was a shape hunt, which Travis loved. There are so many other variations you could do with this game, such as finding fish of all one color, or finding the biggest and smallest fish.
Travis ultimately decided that he liked fishing in a slightly different way, affixing the magnet to the paper clip by hand, then tugging up. Either way, I loved that this activity got him playing and learning at the same time.