Here at Curiosity Kids we love minibeasts. So we tried our best this month to do some mini beast messy play.
We went on a snail hunt and found out they were still hibernating. I never knew snails hibernated! The things you continue to learn from your parents. We went for a frog spawn hunt with a local wildlife trust group, only to get to the pond to find that the frogs hadn’t got ‘busy’ yet as it was too cold. Going to try again in April.
So we got our thinking hats on and made our own bug hunt using stickers and used bottle tops. I love upcycling items that would normally be thrown away. We created these one day and hide them the next, my son and daughter loved hunting for them in the garden.
Made some bug fossils in salt dough again a firm favourite of ours. Our recipe is below. The best thing about salt dough is you can make it in any colour and also bake it in the oven so you get two textures. soft dough to form any shape you want then hard dough to paint. We have some real fossils we have found at the beach and rivers so it was a great discussion to have about how animals got stuck in the sticky mud/clay that hardened over time. ur own bug fossils, cooked some pasta and dug for worms, created some jumping frogs with our canister pop, turned ourselves into cocoons and made butterfly pictures. (Didn’t take any pictures of the pasta worms or butterfly pictures but the internet has plenty of those) and we are going to retry the canister pop with an egg so will post on another post. You can find a short video 2secs long of the chicken pop on this post
We also cooked some pasta and dug for worms. Created some jumping frogs with our canister pop, turned ourselves into cocoons and made butterfly pictures. (Didn’t take any pictures of the pasta worms or butterfly paintings) and we are going to retry the canister pop with an egg so will post on another post. We will also redo the frog jump for life cycle themed learning. You can find a short video, 2secs long of the chicken pop on this post chicken and eggs
The bug fossils were a hit. We love making salt dough, it is literally used every week. I make it that offer now, I just pour the ingredients in and mix. I remember how calculated I used to be measuring each ingredient around 3 years ago.
For our salt dough we use a cup of flour, a cup of salt, pour around a teaspoon of oil and then add coloured water until we have our dough texture. We colour the water first as we find the children like to mix the dough, you get an instant satisfaction when mixing coloured water into the dough which the children want. Rather than trying to colour the dough afterwards.
Our final attempt at finding minibeast was a bit of pond dipping in our pond and at the local country park. We have a small pond in the garden we got our nets and started to remove some of the leaves that had fallen off in Autumn and we found some mini-beasts of the water variety. Newts, Water Snails and Fresh Water Shrimps. Finally!!! Some actual creatures for the children to explore. We will be revisiting mini-beasts in April/early May to see if the snails have finally woken up and see if we can turn a caterpillar into a butterfly and all the other activities we planned but couldn’t do as our mini beast were being coy. Oh and S did find a toad one sunny morning so our mini-beast adventures are looking promising for April.