July 20, 2009

Very Hungry Caterpillars

I took the girls today to our local botanical gardens to walk through their new butterfly house. Caterpillars crawled across our path, chrysalises hung above our heads, and everywhere we looked we saw fluttering butterflies. It was the perfect way to start the theme for the week: caterpillars and butterflies!

The Book - The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

How can I possibly do a caterpillar week without featuring The Very Hungry Caterpillar? I honestly feel this may be the best children's story of all time. It has all the elements: counting, days of the week, colors, and grouping of like objects. On top of this it teaches the life cycle of a caterpillar and introduces young readers to the "coming of age" tale. Even turning the pages is a learning experience, as little hands watch the pages grow from little to big and feel the cut-out "bites" in each one.

As a preschooler, this was by far my favorite book. It was not (*gasp!*) a part of our own library, so I would drag my mother into the school whenever I could to show her this unique book with the holes in the pages. Now I get to share the book with my own daughters who also adore Carle's simple story and colorful illustrations.

The Craft - A Sock Caterpillar

Isn't he cute? And so easy to make! Here's how...

What you'll need:
  1. 1 sock
    Use an orphaned sock or one whose partner is too holey.
  2. embroidery thread or yarn
  3. 1 pipe cleaner
  4. fiberfill
  5. 2 buttons
The steps:
  1. Stuff your sock with the fiberfill, working it around the heel so it looks like a sausage instead of a foot. (This part is fun for the kids to help with.)
  2. Tie the end closed with some embroidery thread.
  3. Tie off segments of the sock with the embroidery thread, starting at the heel to conceal it. I found tying the thread once and then wrapping it around again and double knotting worked the best.
  4. Sew two buttons for the eyes.
  5. Push a pipe cleaner through the head and twist around a pencil to create the antennae. Make sure you fold over the ends of the pipe cleaner so they are not pointy.
  6. Hand over to your child to enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. That is so cute! I love the idea and what agreat way to recycle socks with no matches!


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