The fabled leprechaun always has a stash of gold coins.

How to Tell Preschool Children About Leprechauns

by Valerie Liles

We celebrate St. Patrick's Day every year on March 17th by trying to catch that elusive wee Irish fairy called a leprechaun and aye, leprechauns have been mixing mischief and mayhem for years. Legend has it that leprechauns have a pot of gold stashed for a rainy day -- not quite a 401K, but good enough for a little green guy. Begin your preschooler's introduction of leprechauns with a story about the many fables surrounding these mischievous mythical creatures.

1 Read "Laura and the Leprechauns" by Amber T. Kingston, about believing in leprechauns. Laura is told that leprechauns aren't real, so she decides to find out on her own.

2 Cut out a 4-inch by 4-inch door for the leprechaun and put gold plastic coins inside the box, to build a leprechaun trap from a shoe box. Ask your child to and cover the box with glitter glue and stick on a few gold coins, because leprechaun's love shiny stuff. Sneak a few coins out of the box every once in a while and replace them with leaves and twigs from the yard.

3 Read "Shannon and the World's Tallest Leprechaun" by Sean Callahan about a little girl who gets a visit from an unlikely leprechaun.

4 Sing the Eensy, Weensy Leprechaun song to the Eensy, Weensy Spider tune: Eensy, weensy leprechaun, came out St. Patrick's Day. To look for the gold, that was hidden far away. Over the rainbow, was where he would go, so with a wink of his green eye, he ran to get the gold.

5 Add a few drops of green food coloring in mashed potatoes, to make some leprechaun fare for dinner. Serve green gelatin and top with whipped cream for dessert.

6 Take your preschooler for a walk to look for the leprechaun. Be sneaky and leave a few gold plastic coins where your preschooler can find them.

7 Squeeze a few drops of green food coloring in all of the toilets in your home and make a fuss about how the leprechaun went potty, yea!!!!

Items you will need

  • "Laura and the Leprechauns" by Amber T. Kingston
  • "Shannon and the World's Tallest Leprechaun" by Sean Callahan
  • Green shirts for you and your child
  • Shoe box
  • Scissors
  • Handful of plastic gold coins
  • Glitter glue
  • Handful of leaves and twigs from the yard
  • Potatoes
  • Green food coloring
  • Green gelatin
  • Whipped cream

Tip

  • Make your wee little leprechaun out to be a jovial, friendly fellow. You certainly don’t want your preschooler thinking some creepy green guy is going to be lurking around his house at night; you might just give him nightmares!

About the Author

Based in Atlanta, Valerie Liles has been writing about landscape and garden design since 1980. As a registered respiratory therapist, she also has experience in family health, nutrition and pediatric and adult asthma managment. Liles holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Colorado State University and a Master of Science in technical communication from the University of Colorado.

Photo Credits

  • Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images