Wednesday, 2 April 2014

The Very Hungry Caterpillar: A story basket

I got inspired by The Very Hungry Caterpillar colouring book to create story props to go with the book.
 

I coloured, cut out and laminated the illustrations before cutting a hole in each of the pieces so that they could be threaded onto a small plastic caterpillar.
 
I used a butterfly life cycle set I bought for this purpose.

 
I superglued a piece of string onto the end of my slimmer caterpillar and knotted a large bead at the other end of the string to stop the laminated foodstuff falling out.


Finn loves me to tell the story while he threads the corresponding pieces onto the caterpillar, making realistic "nom nom" noise effects!
 
 
This activity helps him understand the sequence of events in a story as the pictures in the book remind him of the order in which the caterpillar eats its food. Sometimes, his caterpillar eats it in the exact same order as in the book, while at other times, it would rather eat the ice cream cone and chocolate cake first! I wonder if that has anything to do with Finn's hunger at the time of the activity!
 
And when the caterpillar is full, full, full... it makes a nice snuggly cocoon around itself (I wrap my arms tightly around Finn), stays inside for a while (we wait and we wait and we wait...), makes a little hole in the cocoon (Finn pokes a finger between my arms) and comes out all the way to reveal a beautiful butterfly fluttering around the room!
 

4 comments:

  1. Oh! I love this! I'd been thinking making some sort of story prop to go along with The Very Hungry Caterpillar, and your idea is just perfect! Thank you for sharing! Where did you buy your caterpillar life cycle set? I'm sure Finn will get a lot of use out of that as he gets older, too.

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    1. This is the life cycle we've got http://www.insectlore.com/life-cycle-stages/butterfly-lifecycle-stages but I swapped the caterpillar for a thinner one we already had. I can't remember exactly where from but I think probably from a museum gift shop. I made this last year and Finn has used it a lot already!

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  2. If we meet sometime soon, I am happy to give you a couple of real caterpillars with host plants. We collected lots of them with Mr A today on our walk to the allotment. You feed them and he will see the magic unfolding in front of his eyes.

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    1. That would be great, Nina! We actually received this butterfly garden today http://insectlore-europe.com/shop/Butterflies/Butterfly-Garden-Sent-with-Live-Caterpillars/p-1-3171/ You have to order the caterpillars when you know you can spend 5 weeks in a row at home to watch them. I'm not sure we can yet. Do you know what species yours are and how long they take until the butterfly hatches?

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