A Gruffalo Hunt

31 08 2011

Last summer I spied that our local bookshop was going to have a visit from The Gruffalo with the launching of a new Julia Donaldson book. I couldn’t resist the opportunity to create a Gruffalo hunt and spent time with the computer and The Gruffalo website and planned a few visits around the local area before we ended up in the bookshop to find the Gruffalo. LBM was the mouse and had to wear a mouse badge. He then had clues read out to him and had to find the fox (hiding under our sofa), the owl (hiding in the local churchyard up a tree), The snake (in a local park) and finally onto the bookshop to find The Gruffalo.

The experience was probably electrifying for a 2 year old. When we got to the bookshop I asked him to find a Gruffalo. He was happily looking for the book when he suddenly noticed the massive Gruffalo that had just walked past him. His reaction was a mixture of terror and awe. He didn’t let go of me or his Grandma but also couldn’t take his eyes off the Gruffalo. That really was bringing a story to life!!

Apparently you can hire the suit (only for events) and I’ve seriously considered arranging a Gruffalo hunt in the woods for other parents to bring their children to – it’s another great way of getting children out and about physically as well as taking literature outside. One day when I have the time I might just try it!



Kid Tea

31 08 2011

Kid Tea by Elizabeth Ficocelli is one of those books that once you’ve read it you know there are lots of ideas bubbling away that would bring it to life. It’s a great rhyming text and at the end of each day after doing lots of things the children in the story turn the bathwater a different coloured “Kid Tea”.

We had started by just adding food colouring to baths asking what colour Kid Tea LBM wanted – mainly red like sharks blood. Boys eh?! I finally got round to creating an activity which would use all the senses and allow him to explore colours. It took some preparation to get the ingredients ready to make a mess but it was great fun once we started.

Finding the right kind of dirt to mix with water and make the mud pie brown was hard. I think I’ll use potting compost next time as this dirt didn’t mix well. Yellow block paint was great for making a mess and turning the water a different colour which wasn’t the normal colour of paint water. Red Kid Tea also involved a bit of thought as I couldn’t think of anything that would turn the water red. I ended up using bath salts with a bit of food colouring added. It worked which was all that mattered. Green Kid Tea was a bit like the brown one – the grass didn’t really change the colour of the water so a little bit of food colouring mixed on the grass helped. Blueberries also don’t squash into blue but I suspect boiling them before would have created blue water which could have been added. Food colouring came to rescue again but next time I’ll try creating a natural dye from the blueberries beforehand. Purple Kid Tea was the most popular with LBM and once he realised that the melting ice lollies were edible and tasted great that’s pretty much all he was interested. You can see from the blue mouth he has that you really can create Kid Tea!!

Before the mess began

Coloured Kid Tea


Yellow PaintIce lolliesBaths saltsGrass and a little bit of food colouringBlueberries and a little bit more food colouring