When it comes to caterpillars there can only be one book. It is one of the best selling children's books of all time, has been translated into practically every language known to man and celebrated its 40th birthday last year. It is of course "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" by Eric Carle.
Where to start? It all depends on the age of the child(ren) you are using the book with. The book can be used to introduce the concepts of big and little; counting; colours; days of the week; life cycles of caterpillars and butterflies;nutrition and healthy eating; even symmetry. By the time you add some crafts and creative play around the butterfly/caterpillar theme you have enough there for one week all on its own!
One thing I intend to do is put together a story sack based on the book before we start the week so I have everything in one place.
What is a story sack?
Storysacks were developed by a Headteacher from the UK for use in his classroom and at home to engage the children in his school more actively with books and allow a fun shared interactive experience for carers and young children that could be tailored for all kinds of ages and abilities.
Here is more from Communigate who are sponsored by Northumbria University in the UK.
Mine will be a storybox rather than a sack (easier to store) but you get the idea!
OK Here's mine so far - bear in mind I have a toddler, a kindergartener and a second grader and (since homeschooling is illegal in Germany) it is a supplementary activity for the older ones. As always use you own discretion when choosing the tasks relevant to your child's age and ability.
- the book itself - alas not the super pop-up one featured in the Amazon ad above just the plain paperback but hey doesn't matter.
- a little caterpillar made out of a pipecleaner (chenille craft stick) who can be threaded through the holes in the pages as we go, thus interacting with the book.
- Story sequencing cards from DLTK.
- puppets made from the felt board characters at DLTK
- Butterfly lifecycle wheel from Enchanted Learning
- Butterfly wordsearch from Enchanted Learning
- craft activity - make a papier mache cocoon
- fruit and vegetable file folder game from File Folder Fun
- painting activity - make a puffy paint caterpillar using the puffy paint recipe used on No Time for Flashcards (she uses it for a textured lunar landscape but the second I saw it I thought puffy caterpillar I don't know why!)
- threading activity - take pictures of the food the caterpillar ate and laminate them and punch holes in to thread onto a pipecleaner or lace.
- mobile use the images above to construct a mobile we can use as a decoration
- Days of the week tracer pages from First School
- leaf/caterpillar/butterfly lacing cards
- colouring pages
- counting game- count out the appropriate fruit 1-5
- match the halves food activity
- write your own version of what the caterpillar might have eaten