22 Octonauts Preschool Trays!

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TV. Oh, the TV. While we have been cable-free for years, at times I feel the streaming way of doing things these days is less than ideal for a preschooler. They see that we have all this control over the magic box. What’s the next show? Heck, when we go on vacation or something, he is dumbfounded by the commercials.

That said, Netflix and Amazon Prime give us so much access to shows we wouldn’t even know about otherwise. Too many of them though just stink. I can’t stand the little kid’s show formula of a character doesn’t listen, screws up, then fixes it and everyone is happy. I find myself often saying that Thomas or Percy or Mike the Knight or whoever should have paid attention in the first place!

One show that I feel stands out for young kids is none other than the Octonauts. E got into the show on playdates, so when it popped into our new list of Netflix shows, we were quite happy! I appreciate that it doesn’t follow a formula, emphasizes teamwork, and really teaches a lot about sea animals. (Nope, I had never heard of remipedes, either!) The show is very polished, for lack of a better word.

So I decided on doing a big set of Octonauts Preschool Trays! I was happy to find tons of official Octonauts printables from Disney Junior! A caveat on the following activities: I was seeking a “mindless” computer activity to do on my commute to and from work. It helps me get through the winter, you know? So over the course of a couple weeks, I had downloaded much of what was available on the Disney Junior site. They had all these one page sheets about specific animals, numbered 1-50. I kind of took off from there. I cropped out the animals (plus all of the Octonauts and their GUPS), and printed these as photos. I also made a sticker sheet with the Silhouette Cameo of all the animals, inspired by Disney Junior’s own Creature Cards. It’s much(!) more work that I usually put into a theme, but I was looking for that kind of project!

I am also quite thankful for the Octonauts Tot and Pre-K packs from 1+1+1=1! I used several activities from these packs and they are starred below – tot* or kindergarten**.

So finally! Here is our week plus a couple days of 22 Octonauts Preschool Trays!

22 ways to learn with Octonauts Preschool Trays

  1. Octonaut Object Match
  2. I Like Octonauts book**
  3. ‘Oo’ Maze*
  4. ABC Sheet*
  5. GUP Coloring & Photo Match
  6. Salt & Pea Tray
  7. Tracing Shapes*
  8. Three-Part Cards**
  9. Big Water Bead Bin
  10. Octonauts & Ocean Books
  11. Starfish Decorating Craft
  12. Coin Cards**
  13. Octo-Phonics**
  14. Alphabet Go Fish!
  15. Explore! Rescue! Protect! Watercolors
  16. Counting by 5’s**
  17. Counting Gems
  18. Creature Chart w/50 Stickers
  19. Creature Card & Number Match
  20. Cutting/Tracing Practice*
  21. Underwater Dough Tray
  22. Matching Cards*

Octonaut Object Match

  • First, the eight animal cards of the Octonauts was cropped and printed as photos
  • I found clipart of the pair of items on each card, such as Captain Barnacles’ compass and binoculars
  • I printed these pictures nice and big to “match” to the animal cards!

I Like Octonauts book**

  • This cute little book was printed as is from the Kindergarten pack
  • I cut and bound the edge with washi tape.

‘Oo’ Maze* and ABC Sheet*

  • I printed both of these as is in black and white and gave them to him with pens!

GUP Coloring & Photo Match

  • Again, from the Disney Junior PDFs, I cropped out the GUP “cards” and printed them as photos
  • Also from the PDFs, I cropped out the black and white coloring sheets (and printed these in black and white)
  • Gave him the stack of photos and stack of coloring sheets with a big collection of colored pencils.
  • Now we can finally know which GUP is which!

Salt & Pea Tray

  • We love these small scale sensory trays!
  • In the middle pair small beakers we had blue salt and dried peas
  • Rounded out the tray with a mini sifter, small container, tiny funnel, tiny scoop, and “Dash” from the Pinch Dash Smidgen Measuring Spoons

Tracing Shapes*

  • Printed this cute sheet in color from the Octonauts tot pack!

Three-Part Cards**

  • Found a new purpose for this takeout container – 3-part cards!
  • This awesome set is from 1+1+1=1’s Kindergarten pack
  • As usual, I printed these in color, trimmed and put them in the tray for him!

Big Water Bead Bin

  • It’s been too long since we’ve played with a bunch of water beads!
  • We put a whole bunch of blue and some clear into one of our favorite big gray bins
  • Three Octonauts squirters (Barnacles! Kwazii! Peso!) were the centerpiece of the bin, of course
  • We also put in the underwater Toob—— and some scoops and spoons!
  • (For the record, this was not with his other school items; this potential mess resides in the kitchen.)

Sensory Fun on our Octonauts Preschool Trays

Octonauts & Ocean Books

Starfish Decorating Craft

  • This is inspired by The Octonauts and the Decorator Crab!
  • I found a clipart image that had the right starfish shape I was looking for, traced and cut four starfish with the Silhouette Cameo on thick & pretty pink cardstock
  • With this I gave him some shell sequins, big adhesive sequins,
    tissue paper, and thin crinkle paper
  • To put it together, I included a little lid of gel glue and a paintbrush!
  • (Special request from Mom to E: make a starfish for me to put up at my desk at work) ๐Ÿ™‚

Coin Cards**

  • I love a good activity with coins!
  • We printed this “money” from the Kindergarten pack in color, trimmed it and presented to him with a pile of coins.
  • (Yes, the coins all ended up in his little piggy bank!)


  • Such a cute sheet! Yes, this is from the K pack too!
  • What items start with the same letter as the Octonaut on the left?

Alphabet Go Fish!

  • Alphabet Go Fish is a fun little game! “Fish” is in the title so we decided to include it in school this week.

Explore! Rescue! Protect! Watercolors

  • This was printed from the Disney Junior website
  • I attached it to a big art tray with washi tape, then gave him a strip of watercolors, a brush, and a cup of water!
  • With so many things to color this week, I had to switch it up a bit!

Counting by 5’s**

  • This is from 1+1+1=1’s Kindergarten pack — thank you!
  • I printed this sheet of Kwazii as is, then wrote numbers by 5’s on green dot stickers
  • Match the stickers to the numbers on the sheet!

Counting Gems

  • We’ve been practicing counting to 20 and beyond! It helps to use the Counting tray from the Lakeshore Learning Math Trays
  • Then, I gave him a pile of clear, blue and green gems to count on the tray!

Creature Chart w/50 Stickers

  • Ahh – my favorite part of this theme!
  • First, we printed the 50-spot Creature Chart as available from Disney Junior.
  • Next task was getting a sheet of stickers!
  • While cropping from the individual creature PDF’s, I used PhotoScape to easily crop each icon.
  • Then, using PhotoScape’s Combine feature, I simply dragged them all over! It puts them all as one page.
  • I made sure that the stickers were the correct size. Then, I placed them in a Publisher doc and added registration marks for the Silhouette Cameo. From there I could print this in color, then scan and cut with my Silhouette Silhouette Printable White Sticker Paper
  • The result was quite a cool set of stickers, perfectly shaped and ready to be placed on the Creature Chart!

Creature Card & Number Match

  • Another installment of saving and cropping from the Disney Junior materials!
  • This is the top 50 creature cards. (We worked with 50 as that’s how many were on the creature chart above!)
  • Like the rest, we printed these “cards” through Shutterfly.
  • Then, we made simple cardstock numbers using bright cardstock and our laser printer
  • See the little number on the creature card? Match it to the number card!
  • I also liked the idea of making a number line around the room or maybe on the stairs.

Cutting/Tracing Practice*

  • From the tot pack – we printed this in color, and E decided to cut rather than trace!

Underwater Dough Tray

  • So much going on for this theme, the dough tray was reduced to about half of a picture ๐Ÿ˜‰
  • We included the underwater animal items from the Coral Reef TOOB, along with a couple tools
  • We also put in a couple molds from a sand set – it as fun to push the dough on top if it to make imprints!
  • Finally, some green playdough rounded out the easy tray.

Matching Cards*

  • All we did here was print the super cute Octonauts cards from the 1+1+1=1 tot pack in color on cardstock and trimmed!

We have come a long way since our cute little set of Fish Tot Trays!

My first thought here is man, I wish I could share everything I did with those Octonauts printables. I doubt Disney would be too happy with that, though. So, if you are so inclined, have fun downloading all the creature sheets and such from them. ๐Ÿ™‚

(You know, this all stems from that they have these single sheets that are essentially half color and half black and white. I send most of my school items off to UPS to print – I would never justify paying for full color for half of a black and white coloring page!)

As it is, this was quite a cute theme. I can’t thank Carisa of 1+1+1=1 enough for the printables. Hope any little Vegimals out there can have some fun learning with some of the ideas from our Octonauts Preschool Trays!

Iโ€™m proud to be linking this post up to 1+1+1=1โ€™s Tot School Gathering Place with activities that E enjoyed at 44 months old!

Shared at the Laugh & Learn Linkup and I really appreciate being featured! ๐Ÿ™‚

Also linked up over at Good Tips Tuesday, Preschool and Kindergarten Community Linkup, and the Learning Kid Link-Up!

Cool Octonauts Books for Octonauts Preschool!


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15 thoughts on “22 Octonauts Preschool Trays!

  1. Oooh! So glad to find these ideas! My grandsons love Octonauts. They have many of the bath toys and spend most of their bath time creating stories with the characters and Gup vehicles. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I’ve never seen the Octonauts before, I wonder what channel it plays on. I usually just tape shows for my daughter on the PVR that I am ok with her watching. Her favourite show is Wildcratts, and I don’t mind it at all as she learns so much about different animals. I’m sure she would love this show as well since you mentioned it’s also about animals.

    • Our boy loves Wild Kratts too! Thank you for mentioning it. Probably the best kids show on TV! Octonauts is on Disney in the US, or at least it was, but we just watch on Netflix! Thanks for coming by and hosting the link-up!

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