Thursday, September 22, 2011

Squirrel Storytime

Squirrels can be found in most places around the world.  They are especially prevelant in Europe, America and Asia, but do you know they do not live in Australia?!

When the mornings start to get a bit cooler and the leaves begin to change color, you will see more and more squirrels scampering around the neighborhood looking for nuts and seeds to store for their mid-winter meals.  Not all squirrels hibernate throughout the cold months; instead they hide food in easily accessible places that they can feed on later.  Squirrels are fascinating creatures; and oh so darn cute!


If you would like to plan a program around squirrels, here are a few suggestions: 

BOOKS:
A rascally squirrel has an indoor adventure in a city apartment.
A young squirrel panics when the leaves on his tree change color and fall, but he feels better when his mother tells him about autumn.

Acorns Everywhere by Kevin Sherry
An energetic squirrel hoards acorns but forgets where he hid them after being distracted by a berry-gathering bear.

Those Darn Squirrels! by Adam Rubin
When grumpy Old Man Fookwire builds feeders to try to keep birds--the only creatures he likes--from leaving for the winter, he finds himself in a battle with clever, crafty squirrels who want a share of the abundant food.

Micawber by John Lithgow
Micawber, a squirrel fascinated by art, leaves a museum with an art student and secretly uses her supplies to make his own paintings.


SONG:
Frisky Little Squirrel

Original Author Unknown
Sung to: "The Grand Old Duke of York"



Oh, the frisky little squirrel
He gathers nuts and seeds.
He hides them for the winter months
So he'll have all that he needs.

Refrain:

Oh, up-up-up he goes
And down-down-down he comes.
He runs around - goes up and down.
His work is never done.


CRAFT:

For a simple craft, try turning a plain ol' paper bag into an adorable squirrel!  All you need is some paper, scissors, glue, paper bag, and imagination!   I free-hand cut out a tail (shown here and in the photo above), two ears, two eyes and a belly.  Be creative and use whatever scrap paper you have - even news paper or store ads!  If you have google eyes, add them, or draw on eyes with markers.  I made the tail a bit long so it could be attached anywhere to the back of the bag, depending on how curly/flat/upright the child wanted the tail.  You can also cut the sides at an angle (like making fringe) so that it looks more like hair. 


One little tip:  I folded in the corners of the "face" area of the bag (see photo) to give it more of a squirrel look.  I secured this with tape.  Have fun and let your imagination go wild (or nuts?!!).

Ok, second little tip:  If you do not have a bag - make a squirrel headband!  Make a headband out of brown paper and attach the tail (like what was made for the paper bag squirrel).  Add ears to the front part and there you go! 

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