Here are some activities that we have completed using the popular book The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle as inspiration.
Little One has enjoyed this book for some time now and as it is a frequent read during bedtime she particularly enjoyed the activities.
Painting a butterfly using the many colours found in the book. Many toddlers enjoy mixing paints and seeing what colours this creates…often a khaki colour! It is a great way for them to understand colour mixing however, I wanted to show Little One how you can also use an array of colours by ensuring your paintbrush is clean. She chose the colours that she wanted which we organised on the plastic plate and then I modelled how to clean the paintbrush using a touch of water. She really got quite excited about this and noticed that the more water she used the lighter the colour she chose would go. I pre cut the butterfly before she began painting, however, I appreciate it may be hard to tell in the photo. The end result was beautiful but it was also a delight seeing her excited by all the colours she had used in her painting.
In the story The Very Hungry Caterpillar, the caterpillar enjoys biting into many foods including cake, lollipops and sausage however, it makes the caterpillar feel ill which is made better by enjoying some leaves. With this in mind I used the idea to hole punch some leaves found in the garden and completed a threading activity with Little One. This is a great fine motor activity and things like string, ribbon and pipe cleaners could also be used. You could also hole punch the leaves and get your child to find the matching number that represents the quantity. Also, if you do use a decorative hole punch, as I did, the ‘confetti’ left could make a beautiful picture.
The sun, as seen in the photo, really inspired this activity. Using some cardboard and clothes pegs which I already had at home I completed this activity with Little One. The wooden pegs also doubled up as good finger muscle practise however, if this was too tricky they could be placed on like paper clips : ). This activity could also be used for letter recognition by writing your child’s name on the sun and getting them to match the peg with the correct letter on it.
The endpapers of the book are fantastic as they celebrate colour and circles. This activity then becomes a brilliant learning opportunity talking all things maths. A discussion can be encouraged on how circles are unique with their curved edge and, as it did for us, it could encourage searching for different circle shapes around the house that could be dipped in paint and stamped with it. The end result, I’m sure you’ll agree, looks beautifully colourful.