Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Happy Groundhog Day!

Look at me, celebrating all kinds of holidays I normally don't...what's gotten in to me?

Anyway, I was going to wait and publish this post super early tomorrow morning.  Tomorrow, because tomorrow is actually Groundhog Day, but super early so if you wanted to do a groundhog craft on groundhog day, you'd have some time to get your mind around changing your plan for the day.  Oh, yeah, and gather some supplies.

However, An Almost Unschooling Mom (who really should be added to the cool kids' listing over there -->), posted her groundhog craft today, which means it's OK.  Right?  It's OK that I'm doing this?

The kids had no idea what Groundhog Day is, so first we read Groundhog Day from the Celebrations in My World series.

This non-fiction book has sections on groundhogs and hibernation, as well as what Groundhog Day is, how it's celebrated in a few different locations, and "bios" of a few famous groundhogs.

Armed with our new groundhog knowledge, we made a cute little peek-a-boo groundhog craft, using a plastic cup, popcicle stick + wooden spoon (I was planning to use a tongue depressor, but was astonished to find we were all out), some felt, and googly eyes.

I won't give you a blow-by-blow (or glue-by-glue) account, because I think you can probably figure it out.  But if you can't, just search for peek-a-boo groundhog craft--it's all over the internet.  Just keep in mind, you don't have to follow the directions--you can substitute paper or craft foam for the felt, use a printable groundhog instead of making your own, use a stick or pencil for the tongue depressor, use paper or draw on's totally up to you.  Plus,  you'll notice we used white felt to simulate snow (because we do still have a bit of snow here)--all of the instructions we came across used green for grass.
The kids had so much fun playing with their groundhogs, both in and out of the burrows.

 Roger's little guy looks pretty apprehensive upon seeing his shadow, doesn't he?  He also kinda looks like a bear...which is OK, because bears also hibernate.

Next, we read Substitute Groundhog by Pat Miller, illustrated by Kathi Ember.
On February 1, Groundhog is feeling under the weather, so he makes an appointment with Dr. Owl, who tells Groundhog he needs 2 days of bed rest.  Groundhog decides to advertise for a substitute groundhog, who needs to be able to fit in the burrow, see her shadow, and pop up and stay up.  Lots of animals try, but only one has all the qualifications--the kids had fun guessing which animal would get the job. 

We are also planning on going outside on Thursday to see if we have shadows.  I'll be marking their shadows, using sidewalk chalk, so the kids can see how shadow size and direction changes throughout the course of a day.  And we might just have to play a game of shadow tag, too.

Truth be told, I'm glad An Almost Unschooling Mom posted her groundhog craft today...I think we're gonna hafta modify our Thursday plans to include it...I hope you're glad I posted mine, too :)

I've linked this project up to a story + art = a great stART over at A Mommy's Adventures

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