We have a few "Itsy Bitsy" books. Here are our current favorite spider books:
After lunch, I put together a simple contact paper craft for Kingston to do. I wanted to let him explore the concept of making a spider web using black yarn and contact paper.
Once Kingston was in his chair, I handed him the ball of yarn to explore. He made silly faces as he stretched the yarn out and rolled it around the tray. He had a good time dropping some of the yarn onto the counter and waving "bye bye" to it!
When he was done with the yarn, I taped a piece of contact paper to K's high chair. I let him explore the stickiness of the contact paper first and explained to him that a spider's web is sticky. I told him his fingers were the buggies and that the spider was going to catch them and eat them up! Of course when I said this I tickled him, which made him laugh and shake his head back and forth.
Then, I put a handful of cut up yarn pieces on his tray and modeled how to put a piece on the paper. He wasn't interested in my explanation of how the spider web was formed. He was more interested in feeling the strands of yarn, dropping them off his chair, and pulling the yarn taut to examine! He did manage to get the yarn to stick while he was handling it. He made a great sensory activity out of it though, which was great. I told him that the yarn was black, but that a spider web spins a clear web. Then I put a pile of yarn on his head which delighted him! He squealed and picked it off one by one.
After he was done, I put a second piece of contact paper over the top and he was finished. I could have cut it into a more "webby" shape, but I like how his art looks in its original form. Kingston is only 7 months old, so I wasn't expecting this to be a traditional web. I figured it would be pretty abstract, and I just liked the idea of explaining the concept to him!
As we were finishing this project up, Kingston began to play with the skein of yarn again. An idea struck me while I watched him play. In order to let K explore the concept of webs further, I decided to make him his own baby-size spider web! I took the skein of yarn and an empty laundry basket and begun stringing and entangling the yarn around to form a web inside of the basket. I popped the furry spider book in there and we were in business - Kingston's very own spider web!
When he was used to that, I decided to make it even more fun for him. I cleared a space for him and sat him in the basket with his legs underneath the web. He was still able to move freely, but the yarn was surrounding him more, and made the concept more exciting! He had a great time trying to grab his piggy toes through the web of yarn. I explained to him that he was caught in the spiders web. I had the book pretend to catch him and tickle him. He loved that. Then, I just kicked back and watched him explore his environment.
We played a game where I hid his sock underneath a series of tangles and he had to dig it out. This held his attention for awhile. This activity can be done with kids who are too old to sit in the basket also! If you have an older child, have them lean over the basket and practice retrieving things from underneath the tangles! I think that would be really fun.
It was adorable to watch Kingston try to figure his way out of the web. He thought it was really funny too!
LET ME OUT MAMA!!!
When I took Kingston out he was still interested in playing with the web, so I tipped it on its side and we played "Rescue Itsy Bitsy"!!
K had a ton of fun with this activity!! I would definitely recommend trying this with your littles. It was simple to put together and held his attention for a REALLY long time.
Now for your viewing pleasure, here is Kingston at a month old doing "Itsy Bitsy" spider for the first time! (please do not mind my high pitched baby voice or the little monkey spitting up at the end!)