Monday, February 22, 2010

Polar Pals

This week we are going to be meeting some animals who live in the snow.  Eva has been obsessed with penguins lately, especially Rockhoppers, so I thought it would be fun to learn some more about them as well as polar bears, seals and snowy owls.  We are taking a class all about owls at the zoo on Friday so we will be visiting the penguins and polar bears while we are there.


There are lots of great books about arctic friends.  Here are a few I found at our local library or in our personal collection:

Miela Ford's books are a huge hit in our house.  Not only are they fun, simple books with awesome photographs, the stars of the books are also residents at our local zoo!   These are two of our favorites featuring Aurora:
Some other polar bear favorites in our house include:

And last but not least, Eva's must-read book before bed (and the reason she is able to identify a dozen different penguins!):

Large Motor Activities

Penguin Waddle- we will be attempting to walk like penguins!  Keeping our legs together and our arms at our sides we will try to imitate the way our little feathered friends walk.

Penguin Hokey Pokey- just like human hokey pokey only we will be putting our wings, beaks and tails in.

Rockhopping- Rockhoppers get their name from, you guessed it, hopping from rock to rock.  Eva will get to hop just like her pal Hoppy around a "rock" obstacle course.

Polar Bear Walk- we will be trying this tricky feat- walking on our hands and feet!

Small Motor Activities

Stacking "Ice Cubes"- we won't be stacking actual ice cubes, we'll be stacking a tastier imitation- marshmallows.  I wonder how tall of an ice tower we can make?

Transferring ice cubes- this time we will be using real ice cubes.  We will try transferring them from one bowl to another using various spoons and scoops to see which makes the job easiest.

Snowball counting- more marshmallows!  For this activity we will be using tongs to move mini marshmallows.  Not only will we be working on our fine motor skills, we will also be practicing counting.


Footprint Penguin- this is a fun, messy and tickly craft!

Penguin Eggs-  another messy one but oh, so much fun!  Eva will be using her finger and black ink to stamp penguins onto eggs.  Another fun way to practice counting as well.

Torn Paper Polar Bear- Eva will get to unleash her destructive side for this craft.  She will be tearing up white paper and then gluing it onto a polar bear shape on blue paper.

Snowy Owl Puppet- We will use a sponge paint brush to add white "feathers" to a paper lunch bag.  After adding eyes, a beak, wings and talons, our owl will be ready to fly!

Sock Seal- we will be stuffing an old white sock and then using fabric paints to add a cute face to our new little polar pal.

Other Activities:

Arctic Adventure Board Game- I am making a simple board game where Eva will again be able to practice her counting and taking turns to get polar friends from an ice berg to the South Pole.

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