I thought I’d share the other resources we have been using as part of our life cycle work over the last couple of weeks.
First up we picked up some books from the library – we used the three shown below – Frog (Life Cycles), Animal Diaries: Frog and Looking at Lifecycles: Butterfly. The two life cycles books are brilliant for Mr D and Miss E – pitched at just the right level with lots of clear pictures and easy language that introduces new words and concepts in a really accessible way.
The frog diaries book is aimed at slighter older children but is a lovely introduction to the life of a frog, the predators and threats he faces. The children were really engaged with this one and we have read it a couple of times now.
I also used a couple of other books that we have; Nature’s Day is one we use time and time again when we are looking at nature and seasons. It’s a real beauty. Outside we used to look at some of the photographs and drawings of butterflies and frogs and the same for the wonderful Creaturepedia. The Spring book is another great book and we spotted the tadpoles in the pond and the Woodland Life (Usborne Spotter’s Guide) is a book that will be in the bag when we head out to the park soon as we try to identify the different types of butterfly we hope to spot.
We played the Counting Caterpillars from Orchard Toys a number of times. This was a Christmas gift and, like most the Orchard toys games we have played, the children love it and it’s a really good way to learn about colours and numbers. Mr D seems to have, finally, got over the mental block he had with the number five!
We have also been making use of the resources over at twinkl. We had a couple of their word mats displayed on the wall. These are always really good and I’ve laminated these to re-use next year. We use this butterfly life cycle one and this frog one. Both are free resources so well worth a look.
We also painted a pond picture. We made use of the good weather that we had and played out with the tuff spot. I set up some finger paints (we used the ones shown below from Baker Ross). They are quite a thick consistency and almost jelly like rather than a poster paint style and the children enjoyed getting their hands mucky with these! They painted a pond, fields and a sun. Once they had dried out we added some shiny blue fabric to the pond and stuck on some frog life cycle pictures and labels. I used these image cut outs and these labels for this activity – the labels are a free resource.
The children had lots of fun with this and I was impressed that they were able to remember the four stages of the cycle and add in their pictures. I really like their finished masterpieces.
Finally, we have rounded off this area of work with some games – this fab ‘feed the frog‘ game was a big hit with Mr D yesterday. Miss E had fallen asleep so I hid the flies in our sandpit and Mr D dug them out and fed them to the frog. This entertained him for a good while and it’s one I am sure we will come back to.
We then had a go at these butterfly and caterpillar pattern matching. Mr D hasn’t ever shown much interest in these, but he soon picked this up and seemed to enjoy it. He manage the butterfly one and did two or three of the caterpillars. This is a great activity to have to hand and I was really pleased to see that he was able to understand the concept of repeating patterns.
Our lifecycle work involved:
- Butterfly life cycle tuff spot
- Butterfly life cycle lap book
- Frog life cycle tuff spot
- Frog life cycle lap book