I spent my first 10 years on the west coast then moved back after university and settled here finally to start a family. I love the beach, not to sit and bake in the sun ( good thing there isn’t much around here), but to find sea creatures. I have never really gotten over the excitement of tide pools, sea anemones, starfish, crabs, and sea urchins. Even if you aren’t close to the coast you can make this sea urchin craft. This is not a craft for tiny guys, but with help, a preschooler could do it without getting too frustrated.
- Gather your materials. You will need some styrofoam ( or the salt dough would be awesome, just skip the tissue paper), tissue paper, tape, a marker, scissors, and lots of toothpicks.
- Start by cutting your styrofoam into a circle.
- Wrap a square of tissue paper around it, and tape.
- Color the toothpicks with marker. This is tough – with older children see how many they can do at once. I held a bunch and rolled them in my fingers to paint all sides. With younger ones, you could have them finger paint the toothpicks, but this would add drying time too.
- Stick them into your sea urchin craft!
Books to Match Your Sea Urchin Craft
A Sea-Wishing Day by Robert Heidbreder is a wonderful tale of adventure, pirates, mermaids and treasure! The best part the little boy and his canine companion never really leave his backyard in the city , instead the adventure is all in their imagination. Anyone with a preschooler will appreciate this book, playing pretend is a huge part of most 3-5 year old’s playtime, and it should be. This book encourages, as well as celebrates that as this little boy discovers adventures on the high sea.
Swimmy is a serious tale about a little fish who tragically looses his family, and is forced to face scary things alone. He soon discovers that if he and other little fish band together they have power against the big bullies in the ocean. Personally I love this author and this book is one of my favorites. Some parents have expressed concern over his family being eaten at the start , so read it for yourself before deciding if it’s right for your child.
Ten Little Fish by Audrey and Bruce Wood was another cute find this week. The book is a rhyming countdown story about 10 little fish and what happens to them one by one. The illustrations look like an animated movie, and the rhymes are well thought out. My one wish is that the numbers were shown as digits not simply words, so that younger children who can recognize the numbers in digit form but not yet by reading the word could more easily follow along. The ending made me giggle, and you’ll have to grab the book to find out why !