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It's that time of month again: Baby Book Club time! This month we read We're Going on a Bear Hunt by Helen Oxenbury. This has always been one of my favorite books to share with children. I read it so consistently to the children that I used to teach in daycare, that I am surprised K didn't come out reciting it! Originally I had planned to set up a typical outdoor bear hunt and had asked each of the parents to bring a set of homemade binoculars. However due to inclement weather, I had to get creative. The result? 6 sensory bins, one for every part of the book!
We had 5 kiddos at this meeting and one honorary member. At the beginning of the meeting, we gathered together and read our story. By the time we were done reading, the kiddos were more than ready to dive right into the bins!
I set them up on a plastic shower curtain (thanks Carrie!) in the kitchen, and we let the toddlers have at them! Each bin was labelled with the title of that part and the descriptive words that came after it. (For Example: A Deep Cold River "Splash Splosh Splash Splosh Splash Splosh")
This is what the bins contained:
1 - Green construction paper cut into strips of grass - I taped some to the sides to allow the kids to run their fingers through it, and left some loose inside
2 - Blue Water dyed with food coloring
3 - Mud
4 - Leaves (this bin represented the forest)
5 - Shaving cream (this represented the snowstorm)
6 - Black crinkle paper with the bear from our Fisher-Price Little People Zoo Talkers Animal Sounds Zoo hidden at the bottom (this represented the cave, and the toddlers had to dig for the bear!)
As there were 6 bins, virtually there was enough so that every child could be playing with one at one time. Each child chose what they were interested in and dove in.
We told them the contents of each bin and retold them the parts and sound effects of each story portion.
It was wonderful to see how each child explored differently. Some didn't want to get dirty while others preferred mixing the various sensory fillers. Some children were fixated on just one particular bin (like my child who was obsessed with the water!).
Even our youngest member joined in for the first time today! Little E explored the black paper and the leaves. She was very curious about what the black paper tasted like!
We spent the majority of the meeting exploring the bins. For our snack, everybody bought a trail mix item to add into a big bowl. We had all kinds of goodies: marshmallows, cheddar bunnies, pretzels, raisins, almonds, and more mixed together for the kids to pick at while they played.
We had so much MESSY fun that I didn't even get pictures of any other parts of the meeting. That just goes to show what a great time we had!
Join us next month for My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss!
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