My son is a wee bit obsessed with emergencies right now, he plays paramedic or firefighter multiple times a day. Every car ride is a ride in a firetruck … well you get the picture. So I decided to use his enthusiasm for first aid at craft time! This is such an easy craft and I think they turned out perfectly ! I love the variation in textures with the smooth band aids and the soft fluffy gauze.
- Gather your materials. You will need some band aids, gauze pads, markers and a piece of construction paper ( or recycled cardboard ! ).
- Start by decorating your butterfly wings ( the gauze) with a marker. We found that dotting the marker works best so the gauze didn’t get all stretched out.
- Open your band aids – this took a while but my son was very proud he did it independently.
- Next pinch the gauze, my son couldn’t do this step.
- Pop the band aids on. We did this step together .
- Add antennae with markers! I was so excited that he did this step, until now he would have had me do it insisting he couldn’t, both of us were proud that he did it with no help.
Need some books?
This number activity combines number recognition, counting and one to one correspondence. All preschool math skills that are the building blocks for learning addition, subtraction and more complicated operations. This activity is easy to make simpler by reducing how many bugs you use, and using smaller numbers. If your child has mastered these skills make the bugs into equations. Write 2+4 on the bug and have them use the dots as manipulatives and solve the equation with them!
- Gather your materials. You will need some black, red and yellow construction paper, a marker, googly eyes and glue. I also used a piece of cardboard to anchor all 4 bugs.
- Start by drawing the outline of a lady bug on one of the colored sheets of construction paper.
- Cut out all 4 bugs and glue on the cardboard, add smiles if you want!
- Cut out black dots for the bugs, after step 5 you may need to cut a few extra out but I found it easier to keep the activity flowing than make my son wait while I cut out the exact numbers he chose. We had a few left overs actually.
- Ask your child to choose a number for each bug. By letting your child choose the numbers it gives them some control which I am sure you agree is a great thing for preschoolers! Write the numbers out on each bug. If your child is able, have them write the number even if it’s huge and messy encourage them to try!
- Add glue and the dots to each bug. Have your child count out the number as they add the glue. If your child needs some help with counting , do the glue yourself so your child is simply matching up the dots to the glue.
- Encourage your child to count out loud as they add the dots, especially with preschoolers who have a tendency to skip numbers if they are counting out loud, you can intervene and encourage them to start again. Use gentle corrections and lots of praise. By adding the dots one and a time this encourages one to one correspondence naturally.
- After all the spots have been added to the bugs add glue for the googly eyes.
- Add the eyes and let dry.
Need a book about bugs to continue this lesson?
Let the Countdown Begin!
Over the next week I will be counting down the top 7 posts of 2009, I determined the order base on your suggestions on Twitter, Facebook and via email as well as which posts got reposted the most on other blogs, and the most hits. Here is # 7 !
- Gather your materials. You will need 2 yellow bandages for each bug and one of another color, we chose orange but any color with enough contrast will work. You will also need 2 googly eyes for each bug, a yellow and a white crayon and glue.
- Start by drawing your night scene, a moon, some stars!
- Open your bandages.
- Stick the bandages you are using as bodies on first.
- Next criss cross the yellow bandages over the body to make wings.
- Using the yellow crayon make antennae
- Add the glue for the eyes and add them.
- Let dry
Bugs! Bugs! Bugs! by Bob Barner is a good book for little ones interested in bugs, but not ready for a full non fiction science book. Various bugs are introduced with a fact about them, and the coolest part of the book is the page with the life size illustrations of all the bugs. The illustrations are bright and fun and the length is perfect for toddlers and young preschoolers.
Bob and Otto by Robert O. Bruel is a lovely story about 2 friends who must part ways , in this case because one is a caterpillar who needs to build a chrysalis and the other an earth worm who needs to dig deep into the ground. What I like about this book is that it goes on to explain that the earth worm’s digging is vital for the trees to grow so that the caterpillar can eat the leaves and turn into a butterfly. I like the lesson about how we all play a part!
The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle is more than a cute book about a crabby bug. The Lady bug is looking for a fight and each hour she finds a bigger and bigger animal to fight with until she is unintentionally slapped by a big whale’s tail! I loved using this book to teach telling time, as there is a picture of an analog clock on each page. I would use a play clock and as I read each page ask one child to come and set our classroom clock. Also don’t be put off by the fact that the lady bug tries to pick fights, no animal takes her up on her offer and you can spin that into a great lesson about not giving into people who are trying to pick fights.
The Very Busy Spider was a favorite of my son’s from the get go. We have the board book edition and what I love about it, is that the spider web in it is raised and offers a sensory element to reading the story. This is a story of hard work, persistence and also helps reinforce animal sounds. Perfect for toddlers !
The Very Lonely Firefly by Eric Carle is one of my son’s favorite books to read before bed, not so much because of the story but because the board book version has flashing lights at the end ! The story is all about a firefly looking for another firefly but mistaking all different light for a friend. Toddlers love this book because it gives them a chance to be bossy and say ” No that’s a flashlight” to the firefly. The text is the right length for little guys but not boring for older kids , and I need to mention the little lights are really quite magical in a dark bedroom, especially if you are in a place that doesn’t have fireflies!
Diary of a Spider by Doreen Cronin is a very clever book with some pretty funny bits of humor . Older preschoolers will love it. The overall theme is that spiders aren’t all nasty and that they have fears too. What a great lesson for kids that are at the age where they are not as eager to share their fears because they don’t want to look weak or unable to handle things themselves.
Beetle Bop by Denise Fleming is a beautifully illustrated book with a melodic rhyming text and fantastic descriptive words. The pages are saturated with color and the pictures are all done from a bugs perspective so feet, birds and lizards all seem huge to the reader and you start to see what it might be like to be so small! It was very reminiscent of Honey, I Shrunk the Kids My son loved this book and so did I !
Two Bad Ants by Chris Van Allsburg is a very interesting story of two ants who decide not to return to the colony and hang out in a sugar bowl eating instead. Of course nothing is as it seems and they have quite an adventure trying to avoid all the dangers of a kitchen, realizing in the end that being a part of a colony isn’t so bad! This is a cute book for preschoolers who will love trying to guess what each new adventure the ants face really are- they include a toaster, hot coffee and an electrical outlet.
I Love Bugs!by Phileomon Sturges is a rare find. It is listed as fiction but I would consider it as non fiction, as it really is a great factual book about bugs for older toddlers/ young preschoolers. It is really hard to find simple, short books that include facts and this one is perfect. It doesn’t go into the life cycles of butterflies or how lightning bugs light up, but it does use descriptive words with bright and charming illustrations. Great for the under 3 crowd, and useful for older kids too!
- Gather your materials. You will need 2 large leaves with stems, some cardboard, markers, tape, glue and googly eyes.
- Start by drawing a butterfly body on the cardboard.
- Have your child color it – red was the only color he wanted to use today.
- While they are coloring snip the stems off the leaves, don’t loose the stems they will be made into antenna in a bit.
- Cut the body out.
- Tape the antenna on underside of the head.
- Tape the leaves on as wings. Tape works way way better than glue since the leaves can still have some moisture , they can take forever to dry sometimes.
- Glue the googly eyes on add a smile!
“Lucky Leaf” by Kevin O’Malley is a funny book about a boy kicked outside and off his video game by a parent and his quest for a lucky leaf. He waits and waits for the last leaf from a tree to fall, even after his friends give up and go home. The story is cute and my son thought it was funny. I liked the comic book format of the illustrations and the little boy’s dog has some pretty funny facial expressions throughout.
“Autumn : An Alphabet Acrostic” by Steven Schnur is a lovely book that is also a wonderful introduction into this form of poetry for young children. Each page has a poem about the season, from Acorns, to Owls to Pumpkins. Each letter of the words are a jumping off point for a sentence in the poem. The beauty of this book is that it reads well traditionally as well as individual poems which really makes it two books in one.