Activities for Groundhog Day

Every year Groundhog Day sneaks up on me, but this year we are actually doing something to recognize it! I hosted the Sweet Bee’s preschool group today and we had some groundhog themed fun.

After our usual introductory stuff (some free-play time, welcome song, talk about the calendar and the weather) we read Animals in Winter.The book details, briefly, what various animals do to survive the winter: migrate, hibernate, or adapt. I previously found images online of each animal mentioned in the book, and as we read the book we added the animal picture to the appropriate poster. This book was a really great way to bring a little science into our lesson, and the activity as we went along kept the attention of the children.

Then it was time to focus in on the groundhog (aka the woodchuck). The children colored a groundhog and decorated a cave (toilet paper roll) for it to pop out of. Snack time: Edible Groundhogs!I originally found the idea for this groundhog here and I thought it was so cute. I modified the instructions slightly based on the amount of supplies I was willing to purchase (I left out the cookie frosting and just used chocolate pudding to stick it all together). Here is the breakdown:

-chocolate pudding for the body

-vanilla wafer for the head

-edible eyeballs (I found some at Walmart in the cake decorating aisle–the kids thought they were the coolest thing ever!)

-butterscotch chip for the nose (or you could use a chocolate chip)

-mini marshmallow for the teeth

-vanilla wafer broken into pieces for the ears and the front paws

The children were very enthralled with this little edible critter!

To conclude our day we ended with a few songs and a game.

(sung to the tune of 10 Little Indians)
One little, two little, three little groundhogs.
Four little, five little, six little groundhogs.
Seven little, eight little, nine little groundhogs.
Sleeping down under the ground.

(sung to the tune of I’m a Little Teapot)
I’m a little groundhog, furry and brown.
When winter comes, I sleep underground.
I’m curled up, as cozy as can be.
When it’s spring please wake me up!

I brought out my laundry basket and the children took turns laying inside, with a blanket thrown over their heads. I would sing the song and the child would pop up when I said “wake me up!” The kids loved it and wanted multiple turns, so I sang a lot! A simple game, but perfect for the 4-year-olds (and the the almost 2-year-old) in our group.

If I have time tomorrow, I plan to make this footprint groundhog with my children.Image courtesy of The Educator’s Spin On It

Here are the other books we are reading in honor of the furry little groundhog:

Geoffrey Groundhog Predicts the Weather by Bruce Koscielniak

Gregory’s Shadow by Don Freeman

Happy Groundhog Day!

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