I found out about the Virtual Book Club for Kids through Mommy and Me Book Club, which I’ve been following for a while. I was thrilled the minute I read the list of authors and was bubbling with ideas within moments. I guess it got my librarian juices flowing. 😉
Our friends, of course, were more than willing to participate with us. This year we’ve decided that I will plan Book Club every month, and C will be planning a Service Project. Today was our first Book Club day and I would say it was a great success!
Red Leaf Yellow Leaf
We started by reading the book together. It felt good reading to the kids, asking them questions, and getting them involved in the book. Felt like old times. When we finished reading the book, we talked about what plants need to grow and what the character in the book put the tree into (dirt). Then we moved to the kitchen where we made dirt! Dirt pudding, that is. I found the recipe here. The kids helped pour in the milk, turn on the mixer, and (their favorite part) crush the cookies. We put the cups into the fridge to set while we did other activities and got to eat them for dessert when we added worms, “seeds” (mixed nuts), and “sticks” (Wheat Thin Stix). They loved it. I was so busy helping the kids, I didn’t get any pictures of us making the dirt, but I did snap this one of them eating it.
While our dirt was in the fridge, we read the book Leaf Man. I love that book. The illustrations are just so cool. I love looking for the hidden animals and helping kids discover that first glance doesn’t always show the whole picture. I was pleased when our four started pointing out the little details. Then we headed outside to gather leaves to make our own leaf pictures. They had a lot of fun looking for leaves on the ground. Then they realized there were some on the tree they could reach!
We then went back into the house where we taped squares of contact paper onto the floor so they could use their leaves to create their pictures. I had to laugh when N poured his whole bag out and declared that it was Batman! When we asked where his mask was he took the mask he’d been wearing and put it on the pile of leaves. Too cute! E made a Leaf Princess that I didn’t see because she immediately took the leaves back off. Kyla and Lucas were meticulous about placing leaves on their contact paper. While they looked very deliberate about their placement, the end results looked nothing like the “princess” and “batman” they claimed them to be. 😉 However, when I asked Kyla what her favorite part about the day had been, she said it was making the “Leap Pimpess” (that’s how she pronounces “leaf princess”).
This book doesn’t have a lot of words, but it’s perfect for this age group. It focuses on colors, shapes, and animals. I mostly focused on the shapes for this one. The kids loved shouting out what shape of each cutout. We then moved to the table for lunch and shape fun! Last night I cut turkey bologna and cheese into various shapes. I added in an assortment of different shaped crackers and encouraged them to make animals using the shapes. They dove right in, grabbing crackers, meat, and cheese and arranging them on their plates. They didn’t really resemble any animals I’ve ever seen, but that was okay by me. They also ate, which was the whole point. I showed them how to make a sandwich using the crackers as bread. I think every single cracker ended up with at least a nibble out of it. 😉
Overall, I was very pleased with how the day went. I’m so glad they are getting to the age where we can do more stuff like this. And I’m sure the more we do it, the better they will get. This afternoon, my kids talked about their leaf pictures, so I pulled out the contact paper and the paper leaves I’d cut out (in case it wasn’t possible to get real leaves from outside) and they had fun creating a new Leaf Princess and Leaf Batman. This time we also drew in eyes, mouths, noses, and belly buttons! LOL You can probably tell that I helped Kyla a little with her princess (mostly just asking her guiding questions) and Lucas did his completely on his own. Both turned out super cute, regardless!
I’m really looking forward to doing more Virtual Book Club activities! Next month: Amy Krouse Rosenthal.