Personal, Social and Emotional Development
'The Crunching Munching Caterpillar' is a book all about growing up and changing. Sit with your child and look at photos of them as a baby and growing up, maybe even a baby scan if you have one. Talk about how they have grown and changed and how they will continue to grow and change as they grow up. What are their favourite memories? Have they had any difficult times that you all got through together? You might like to have a look at baby photos of the other people who live in your house.
Here are some photos of me growing up:
Looking forwards, what does your child think they might like to be when they are a grown-up? Where would they like to live? What job would they like to do? Would they like to a be a mummy or daddy? They could draw themselves as a grown-up.
Gross Motor Skills:
The Hungry Caterpillar Yoga:
Life-Cycle Movement Sequence:
Watch this video about the life cycle of a butterfly: (You might want to talk about the fact the footage is sped up and that the chrysalis stage can take up to 21 days!)
To start your dance/gymnastics sequence, you need to make an egg shape, as small and tucked up and round as you can make your body. Next, the caterpillar hatches. You might need to move on your tummy for this bit as caterpillars do not have big, long arms and legs like you. Now, think about the way a caterpillar moves. Can you move like this? How about when the caterpillar changes into a chrysalis? Can you make a long, still shape? Think about how the caterpillar emerges from the chrysalis slowly and then stretches its beautiful wings. Can you slowly emerge from your chrysalis and do a BIG, ssssllloooowwww stretch? Next, think about how the butterfly moves and flies and see if you can do the same, moving your elegant wings in time with each other. If you put these actions together in order, it is called a sequence. Put the clip on again and perform your sequence for your family to the music. I would love it if you could record your sequence and post it on Tapestry for me to watch and enjoy too! (The Music in the clip is called “River Flows in You” by Yiruma. Here is a video of him playing this amazing piece of music. You might like to watch this version together and see how his fingers move to the play the sounds you can hear).
Fine motor skills:
You will need an empty bottle with a cap that has a small opening that you can squeeze. An empty washing-up liquid bottle is ideal! Cut out a butterfly shape from a tissue and place it on the table. Squeeze the washing up bottle towards the butterfly to make it fly across the table! See if you can get it all the way across. If you have two bottles, you can make to butterflies and have races. This is a great way to strengthen the muscles in your child’s hands, ready for writing!
Health and Self-Care:
In the Crunching Munching Caterpillar, the Caterpillar grows up. Talk with your child about the things that we need to do to help us stay fit and healthy as we grow up, such as eating healthily, exercising, getting enough sleep, keeping ourselves clean and brushing our teeth twice a day for two minutes each time. Use a timer (e.g. a stopwatch, an oven timer or on your phone) to time how long two minutes is. It feels like a very long time when you are just waiting! What else can you do in two minutes? How many star jumps can you do? Can you write your name in two minutes? Could you take your shoes off and put them back on again in two minutes?
When you brush your teeth that evening, use the same timer and make sure you brush for the whole two minutes and make sure you brush every single tooth, front, back and top! Then you will have beautiful teeth as you grow up too!
Here is a Hey Duggee teeth-brushing song you might like to watch together:
Understanding the World
Watch this clip of the life cycle of a butterfly. It is the same clip as in the Physical Development challenge. Talk about the different stages using the words egg, caterpillar, chrysalis, butterfly and cycle.
- Find out about other animal/plant life cycles such as a frog or a dandelion.
- Go on a minibeast hunt in your garden and draw, write or take photos of what you find. Talk about where you find them and what type of places they like to live e.g. woodlice like dark and damp places whereas spiders like open spaces where they can catch flies as they fly through.
- Make a home for minibeasts in your garden. You could make a log pile with sticks or use something from your recycling bin and fill in with damp leaves and twigs or create a bee home using small tubes such as straws or bamboo for them to nest in.
One of the children had the most amazing Hungry Caterpillar app that they posted a video of on Tapestry last week and I loved it! It is called “Hungry Caterpillar Shapes and Colours.” The basic package is free and still good for shape naming and matching. The full app costs £3.99 but does allow you to order, sort and play with shapes in lots of different ways so may be worth it, if that is affordable for you.
Expressive Arts and Design
Half and half butterflies: Fold a piece of paper in half and paint a butterfly wing on one half of the paper. You could try including some of the 2D shapes you know, making a pattern or even mixing different colours to make new ones. When you have finished, fold over the paper and print your wing onto the other half. When you open it out you will have a whole butterfly! Talk about the words symmetry (meaning that it is the same on both sides), shape, colour, pattern and half.
Caterpillar crafts: Make an egg box or finger-painting caterpillar. Can you create a colour pattern body e.g. red, green, red, green etc?
Caterpillar songs: Here are some Caterpillar songs from the website Twinkl you can learn and sing together. I have recorded the songs below so that you can hear them and even sing along!