Learning about how animals prepare for winter is great fun! Your kindergarten students will love learning about squirrels with these hibernation crafts. Looking for snack ideas? Try this kids recipe – Hibernation Nuts!
Before beginning your hibernation crafts, try reading the story The Busy Little Squirrel, by Nancy Tafuri. This story of how squirrel prepares for winter will also provide the perfect background to beginning your kids recipe – Hibernation Nuts. In the story, other animals ask squirrel to come and play…but the chorus is always the same: "Squirrel couldn't…he was so busy!" Use this as a springboard for comparing and contrasting how other animals prepare for winter.
For the first of our hibernation crafts, students will make their own squirrel. Below are the directions.
- Two egg carton cup sections which have been attached together – one on top of the other – with Scotch Tape (one pair per child)
- Brown paint
- Medium brown felt or construction paper oval (three per child)
- Small brown felt or construction paper oval (two per child)
- Large brown felt or construction paper oval (one per child)
- Googly eyes (2 per child)
- Black small felt or construction paper circle (1 per child)
- Brown paper lunch bag (crinkled to resemble a den or squirrel's nest)
Using the paintbrush, have the children paint their attached egg cups brown. Then, using the glue, the children should attach the squirrel's head (using the medium oval) and ears (using the two small ovals)to the front of the painted egg cups. Afterward, it is time to glue on the eyes and the nose of the squirrel. Glue these to the head. The black circle will be used as the nose. Glue the two other medium ovals to the bottom of the cups to look like the squirrel's feet. The last step, is to a attach the large oval as the squirrel's tail to the back of the egg cup – again using the glue. Allow your squirrel to dry. Then, your students may use their squirrel to act out the scenes from the book The Busy Little Squirrel, and practice hibernation using the brown paper bag.
This kids recipe – Hibernation Nuts – is easy enough for your Kindergarten students to complete themselves! When complete, these little treats look just like acorns. Be careful…or squirrel might steal this little gem right out of your hands as he gets ready for winter!
- Chocolate donut holes
- Chocolate frosting
- Spreading knife
- Heath English Toffee Bits
- Plate (1 per child)
Broken pretzels (not rods or sticks)
Give each child a donut hole, plate, a spreading knife, a bowl of the English toffee pieces, a broken pretzel piece and a dollop of chocolate frosting. Using the knife and the chocolate frosting, the student should frost the top 1/3 of the the donut. Then he or she should dunk just that frosted top 1/3 into the bowl of English toffee…so that the entire frosted top is covered in toffee bits. The last step to this kids recipe – Hibernation Nuts – is to place the pretzel "stem" in the acorn.
Your students are bound to have fun with the hibernation crafts and kids recipe – Hibernation Nuts! For added fun, spend some time "hibernating" nuts in the classroom…just like the squirrels do.
Activities are based on author's own experience
Images are author's own