#beyondthebook Activities

#beyondthebook Activity - Crocodile Swamp Sensory Bin

In the book, No Way, Yirrikipayi the main character is a crocodile (a yirrikipayi) that lives in a swamp. In this beyond the book activity, you can create your own crocodile swamp sensory bin using a few simple ingredients you most likely already have in your kitchen! 
The base of the sensory bin will be made out of oobleck! Oobleck is a really simple sensory material that is gooey and squishy all at the same time. To make your oobleck, you'll need:
  • 1 1/2 cups cornstarch (available at the supermarket in the baking aisle and also called corn flour - it's the same thing)
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons tempera paint (optional) NOTE you can use food colouring but don't use too much or it will stain hands. We reommend GREEN for a great crocodile swamp!
  • A medium size mixing bowl

1. To make your oobleck, add the cornstarch and water into a bowl and begin mixing together with your hands. It won't really work to use a spoon, so get in there!

2. When it is starting to come together, start adding your paint/ food colouring. Work it in so the colour is consistent. 

3. Add more cornstarch/ water until you believe the consistency is right. It should be not quite a liquid and not quite a solid. It should feel similar in consistency to honey, but then sort of tear if you pull it apart quickly. 

 

Once you have your oobleck base, add to the bottom of a sensory tray - a roasting tray or drink tray can both work well! Add in some folliage, dirt (if you don't plan on reusing the oobleck) and a crocodile!

If you want to store your oobleck, simply pop into a covered container. The mixture will probably separate a bit, but just use your hands to knead it back together! 

x Bookieboo

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#beyondthebook Activity - Watercolour Paints using Food Colouring

The Star in the Forest has beautiful watercolour artwork on many of the pages. It is truly magical! In this simple beyond the book activity inspired by The Star in the Forest, you can create your own watercolour paints (to then create an artwork!) using normal food colouring. 
To first make your paints, you’ll need:
  • 4 tablespoons baking SODA (not powder) - this is also known as bicarb soda
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 2/3 teaspoon glucose syrup (available at supermarket in baking aisle)
  • 2 tablespoons corn flour (available at supermarket in baking aisle)
  • Food colouring (icing gels work best, but the normal Queens brand liquid from the Supermarket is fine - we like to buy the 4 pack of red/yellow/blue/green) 
  • Mini muffin or ice cube tray
  • Toothpicks or something else to stir with

1. To make your paints, first mix the baking soda and vinegar together in a big jug. The next steps are easiest if it's a jug with a spout, like a Pyrex measuring cup.

2. Wait for the fizzing to stop, and then add in the glucose syrup and corn flour. Stir, stir, stir!

3. Pour into your containers (DO NOT add the colours just yet!). This mixture will be VERY thick - that's ok. That's what it is meant to look like. 

4. Add a few drops of colour to each container and stir through with a toothpick.

5. Let them dry! This will take at least a day.

To make your watercolour painting, you'll need a paint brush, a glass of water, and some thick paper. Try seeing if you can make a colour combination like the ones in The Star in the Forest!

x Bookieboo

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#beyondthebook Activity - Cupcake Owls

In this simple beyond the book activity inspired by Wow! It's Night-Time, you can create your own cute and curious little owls out of paper cupcake liners.
To make your owl, you’ll need:
  • Paper cupcake liners (normal size or patty cake)
  • Glue (white school glue is best)
  • Googley eyes (optional - you can just draw eyes on)
  • Coloured paper (for eyes/ feet)

To make your owl, simply fold the cupcake liner as shown below, and glue into place. Then cut out some big owl eyes from colourful paper or use googely eyes. Cut out some feet from paper and glue into place. That's it! 

Try making different size and patterned owls using different types of cupcake liners. If you wanted to create a BIG owl, you could follow the same instructions to make an owl out of a paper plate. 

x Bookieboo

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#beyondthebook Activity - Accordion Dog

In this simple beyond the book activity inspired by Big Dog, Little Dog: Flip the Flap Opposites, you can create your own short dog that magically transforms into a long dog, just like in the book!
To make your accordion dog, you’ll need:
  • Accordion dog template - HERE
  • A piece of plain paper (printer paper or another card stock is fine)
  • Scissors
  • Glue, tape or stapler to attach the accordion to the dog's body

This activity is quick and easy!

1. Print out the accordion dog template above and cut around the outline of the dog. Then, carefully cut the dashed line to chop the dog in half!

2. Cut a long strip of paper about 30 cm long, and 10 cm wide for the accordion. 

3. Fold the long strip of paper back and forth until you have the accordion shape. 

4. Glue, tape, or staple each end of the accordion onto one side of the dog, so that when you put the halves of the dog back together, it looks short, but when you pull the halves apart the dog stretches out like an accordion and becomes very long!

x Bookieboo

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#beyondthebook Activity - Cotton Ball Kitty

In this simple beyond the book activity inspired by The Very Fluffy Kitty, Papillon, you can create your own very fluffy kitty out of cotton balls!
To make your cotton ball kitty, you’ll need:
  • Kitty template - HERE
  • Cotton wool balls
  • Glue (white school glue is best)
  • Other decorations e.g., glitter, markers, googley eyes
  • Bowl for glue

This activity is so fun and easy! Simply print out the kitty template and pour a bit of glue into a bowl. Help your little one dip each cotton wool ball into the glue on one side and then stick onto the template. Try to fill up the whole kitty with cotton wool balls – how many do you think it will take?

Then, use glitter and other decorations to make your fluffy kitty fancy! You might even add some clothes to him just like Papillon in the story. Or you could draw his bird friend!

x Bookieboo

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#beyondthebook Activity - Astronaut Helmet

In this simple beyond the book activity inspired by Odd Science: Spectacular Space, you can create your own astronaut helmet out of a paper plate!
To make your astronaut helmet, you’ll need:
  • Paper plate
  • Scissors
  • Pen
  • Aluminum foil
  • Glue stick (optional)
  • Stickers or other things to decorate helmet (optional) 
  1. Draw a curved line across the paper plate and use scissors to cut along the line and around to make the opening for the helmet. You might need a grown up's help for this.
  2. Take aluminium foil and wrap around the helmet until covered. You can also use glue to keep it on, but we found we didn't need to do this.
  3. Decorate with stickers, glitter etc if you'd like!

 

x Bookieboo

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#beyondthebook Activity - Constellation Viewer

In this simple beyond the book activity inspired by Animals in the Sky and Look Up at the Stars, you can create your own mini constellation just like the ones in the book!
To make your constellation viewer, you’ll need:
  • Empty toilet roll
  • Sticky tape or rubber band
  • Scissors
  • Black paper
  • A safety pin, sewing pin, or knitting needle (something sharp to poke a small hole)
  1. Choose a constellation from Animals in the Sky to make for your constellation viewer, or you can choose another one if you'd prefer!
  2. Cut your black paper into a large circle - make sure it's quite a bit bigger than the toilet roll so you will be able to fold it over the sides. 
  3. Have an adult help you to poke holes in the black circle of paper in the same pattern of the constellation you chose. Make sure that the whole constellation would fit in the circle of the toilet roll. 
  4. Place the black paper constellation over your toilet roll tube, right side up, and fold over your pieces of black paper, securing them in place with tape, or a rubber band.
  5. Test it out!

Make sure all of the lights are on, and look through your viewer! Look through the open end of the toilet roll with one eye, keeping the other eye closed.  lie back on to your sleeping bags and start star-gazing. Look through each tube with one eye, keeping the other eye closed. Do you see your constellation?

x Bookieboo

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#beyondthebook Activity - Toilet Roll Rocket Ship

In this simple beyond the book activity inspired by our How to Catch a Star, you can create your very own rocket ship from an empty toilet roll and a bit of creativity!

To set up this activity, you’ll need:

  • Empty toilet roll
  • Extra piece of paper or thin cardboard (cereal box works great!)
  • Scissors
  • Markers or paint
  • Tape
  1. Cut a circle from the separate piece of paper or cardboard. This circle should be about twice the diameter of your toilet roll opening as it will be used to create the nose of the rocket ship. Tracing around a mug or drinking glass will work fine.
  2. Cut a section from the cone to create what looks like a ‘Pacman’ mouth. Create a cone small enough to fit over the top of the toilet roll from the paper/ cardboard and tape closed. Tape onto the top of the toilet roll.
  3. Using scissors, cut the bottom of your toilet roll into strips and bend out – this is the flames of the rocket ship.
  4. Colour or paint your rocket ship and then watch it soar!

Can you make other rocket ship designs from your toilet roll? Try adding fins onto the side or making a pointer nose for the top!

xx Bookieboo

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#beyondthebook Activity - Paper Plate Dream Catcher

In some cultures, they use “dreamcatchers” to ‘catch’ the bad dreams and only let the good and happy dreams into your head. In this beyond the book activity inspired by How to Say Good Night, you can make your very own dream catcher out of a paper plate!

To make your paper plate dream catcher, you’ll need:

  • 1 x paper plate per child
  • Scissors
  • Hole punch (optional – adult could use scissors to make holes)
  • String, wool, or ribbon in different colours
  • Beads (optional – be aware of small pieces for young children)
  • Feathers (optional)
  1. Begin by cutting out a circle from the centre of your paper plate. Take a hole punch and punch (or poke/cut if using scissors) even holes around the rim of your paper plate – going all the way around. We had 12 holes.
  2. Cut some wool/ string/ ribbon and thread through one hole and knot so it cannot come out. Children may need an adult to do this step. Lace back and forth between 2-4 holes, criss- crossing. Lace through a bottom hole and leave the tail long as this is where you will tie beads or feathers. Repeat a few more times – until the paper plate is full with criss-crossed string and you have as many long tales as you like hanging through the holes at the bottom.
  3. Tie a bead onto each of the tales, or add a feather.
  4. Decorate, hang, and have sweet dreams! 

xx Bookieboo

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#beyondthebook Activity - Leaf Rubbing Artwork

#beyondthebook Activity - Leaf Rubbing Artwork

This beyond the book activity for Trees is all about exploring nature and looking at how leaves from different trees and plants are similar and different from each other. A great way to compare leaves is by doing a Leaf Rubbing!

To make your Leaf Rubbing, you’ll need:

  • Selection of leaves from different trees and plants
  • Crayons
  • Plain paper

This activity works best if you remove the outer paper from the crayon so it can be used sidewards. Simply place a leaf underneath the piece of paper and gently rub the side of the crayon across the surface of the leaf.

This activity can be extended in so many ways! Compare and contrast different leaves, talk about which leaves are big/ little, talk about the parts of a plant, even make an artwork by arranging the leaves in different ways!

xx Bookieboo

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