8 Show & Tell Ideas for Kids (Opposites Theme)

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Show and Tell is a great learning tool for young kids.

It sparks creativity and gets all of the kids in class involved in the learning objective.

If your child is learning about the concept of Opposites at school, Show and Tell can be a great way for them to demonstrate what they’ve learned!

Sometimes, though, it can be hard to think up your own ideas. When you and your child have no idea what to present during the Show and Tell time, get some help from a few of these exciting and simple opposite-themed Show and Tell ideas!

  1. Family photos (old or young?)
  2. Items to shake in a container (noisy or quiet?)
  3. Food drawings (hot or cold?)
  4. Sorting animals (big or small?)
  5. Toy cars and a track (fast or slow?)
  6. Penny restoration (dull or shiny?)
  7. Placing items on a small kitchen scale (heavy or light?)
  8. Guess the object in a bag (soft or hard?)

Let’s take a look at each of these ideas, along with some tips on how your elementary student can present these opposites to the class on Show and Tell day.


Family photos (Old or young?)

Have your child demonstrate what they think the difference between “old” and “young” is with family photos!

For this Show and Tell idea, you need to gather some photos of your child’s extended family. It will help to have pictures of grandparents as well as baby photos.

When it’s time to share, your child will hold up a photo and tell the class who it is and whether they are old or young, a child or an adult.

How can you tell who’s younger in a photo? How can you tell the difference between a child and an adult?

She can also call on classmates to answer if the certain person is old or young.


Soft and hard items in a container (noisy or quiet?)

Ready to get a little noisy? This idea illustrates how noisy and quiet are opposites.

Grab a container with a lid from your Tupperware cabinet or your recycling bin. Any container will do, as long as it’s big enough to rattle some things in.

Ask your child to collect a few hard and soft items around the home. Put them in a separate basket.

Now comes the fun part. Put a softer or lighter item (like a rag, small stuffed animal, or sock) in the container and shake. Is it noisy or quiet?

Swap it out for a harder item (a toy car, game dice, coins). Ask the same question.

For show and tell time, your child could ask her class, “noisy or quiet?”

For fun, she can have her classmates guess what’s inside!


Drawings of favorite foods (hot or cold?)

Everyone knows the opposites of hot and cold because of our sense of touch!

Help your child prepare a poster board or use the whiteboard in the classroom.

The poster (or whiteboard) should have a line down the middle, with the word “hot” on one side and “cold” on the other.

An artistic child can draw their favorite hot foods on one side, like soup, spaghetti, or eggs, and cold foods on the other side, like cereal, ice cream, or a smoothie.

She can make it interactive by asking a few of her classmates what their favorite hot or cold food is and draw it under the correct category.


Animal photos (big or small?)

Looking at pictures of big and small animals makes learning about this opposite pair fun and interesting.

Since animals might be a little harder to draw, you may opt to have your child look through a wildlife magazine or print pictures of big and small animals from the Internet.

Cut out whatever animals he would like to show and tell, and tape them to magnets to take to class.

Most whiteboards are magnetic, so if your child’s classroom has a whiteboard, this method will work (otherwise, you could use sticky tack).

Your child will write “big” and “small” on the board with a line down the middle. He will hold up the animal and tell the class whether the animal is big or small, and put it on the board.


Toy cars on a track (fast or slow?)

Does your child love his or her Hot Wheels?

Help him show and tell the opposites “fast” and “slow” in a fun way with these favorite toys.

You will want to experiment with this at home first.

Make two flat tracks on a table. You can label one “fast” and one “slow.” Practice with your child how to make one go fast in the fast lane, and one slow in the slow lane, or use different types of toy cars on the track that go different speeds.

Have your kid tell the class all about his favorite cars and then demonstrate which ones go fast and which ones go slow.


Penny restoration (dull or shiny?)

Pennies for show and tell

Is your kid a science wiz?

This Show and Tell idea is more on the experimental side, showing the difference between dull and shiny through a handful of dull pennies restored to a new look!

You will need to prepare a vinegar (or lemon juice) and salt solution in a small bowl or container.

Place a couple dull pennies at a time inside the solution and mix it around a little. Wait a minute or so, then rub off the dullness with an old toothbrush or paper towel. Now you have a shiny penny!

When it’s Show and Tell time, your child can hold up the dull pennies first, so everyone can see.

Then, like magic, they become shiny!


Placing items on a small kitchen scale (heavy or light?)

If you happen to have a kitchen scale, this is a fascinating Show and Tell project that only takes gathering up a few light and heavy items around the home.

This idea also has a math theme.

Your child’s class will watch as she turns on the scale and places heavy and light items on the scale, explaining that heavier objects have a larger number, while lighter ones have a lower number.

Then the class can guess, will this next item be heavy or light?

You can bring a bag of small objects from home or weight items from the classroom.


Guess the object in a bag and sort (soft or hard?)

Here’s another quick Show and Tell idea for the opposites “soft” and “hard.”

Have your child collect some soft items and hard items from around your home (ideally, some of your child’s favorite toys!), then grab a bag big enough to fit the largest item in.

For show and tell time, your child can sneakily place an item in the bag without anyone else seeing.

He will take the bag to a classmate and ask: “soft or hard?”

Then the classmate will answer the question and guess what the item might be.


Wrapping Up

Opposites are a fun and easy concept for elementary-aged kids to understand, which makes them a great theme for Show and Tell.

Whatever you and your child decide to present, keep it fairly short and simple by limiting them to 3 or 4 rounds of whatever they are presenting. Make sure to have them practice clearly explaining what makes each item “opposite” from another — that’s the whole point of the lesson!

And last but not least, don’t forget to have fun.

Before you go, check out some more Show and Tell ideas like:

Hope this helps!

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