"There are no seven wonders of the world in the eyes of a child. There are seven million." -Walter Streightiff

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Big Cats

This week we took a walk with the big cats- lions, tigers, panthers, cheetahs, leopards, jaguars and more!

Our sensory tub was a habitat for big cats that live all over the world. For this week only, the big cats shared the same habitat and all seemed to get along pretty well just like all the animals did in Two Ways to Count to Ten: A Liberian Folktale by Ruby Dee and Susan Meddaugh.
They had a rock to climb on, mud, grass and gravel to walk through, and a watering hole in which to congregate.

We loved reading the "Little Tiger" books by Julie Sykes and Tim Warner- I Don't Want to Go to Bed, I Don't Want to Take a Bath and Little Tiger's Big Surprise.
 Using orange, yellow and black paint, we created some really awesome tiger masks. We talked about how a tiger has stripes and we used the black paint to make stripes on our tigers.
We played a game called "Kitty Cat, Kitty Cat, Tiger", kind of like "Duck, Duck, Goose". We all sat in a circle. One of us (the tiger) walked around and tapped each head calling out, "kitty cat". The kitty cats said, "meow". When "tiger!" was called out, the one whose head was tapped, jumped up, growled and chased the tiger around the circle. We played over and over again until everyone just wanted to be tigers and run around in a circle.
On the floor were cat footprints. Cats of all kinds walk on all fours, so we got down on our hands and knees and moved like tigers, jaguars, cheetahs, lions, panthers and other big cats.  
 A favorite song and activity of ours is, "Goin' on a Lion Hunt". 

Goin' on a lion hunt (slap knees and clap hands alternately)
Gonna find a big one
I'm not afraid
I'm so brave.
Look! (Point straight ahead)
A mud puddle
Can't go over it
Can't go under it
Can't go around it
Gotta go through it!
(Squish hands together, dramatize getting muddy-Yuck!)


Tall, tall grass
Can't go over it
Can't go under it
Can't go around it
Gotta go through it!
(Rub hands together, sneeze, scratch from the itchy grass)


A lake
Can't go over it
Can't go under it
Can't go around it
Gotta swim through it!
(Hold breath and dramatize swimming)


A mountain
Can't go over it
Can't go under it
Can't go around it
Gotta climb it!
(Make climbing motion with arms)


A cave
Can't go over it
Can't go under it
Can't go around it
Gotta go in it!
(Pat knees and clap hands softly)
Oooh, it's dark in here.
I see two gleaming eyes.
I feel a furry head.
I feel a wet nose.
It's a tiger!

Slap hands on knees as in funning fast.
Climb the mountain, down the mountain
(Climbing motion with hands)
Through the lake,
(Swimming motion)
Through the grass,
(Rub hands together, sneeze, scratch)
Through the mud,
(Squish hands together)
Open the door, up the stairs, under the bed. (dramatize)

Goin' on a lion hunt (sing quietly)
Gonna catch a big one
I'm not afraid,
'Cause I'm asleep.(Pretend to fall asleep)

We played it many times during the week.
We even added new verses like:
Look!- a pile of sticks (snap fingers), a tree (pretend to climb), a monster truck (pretend to drive)

Using binoculars, we went on a safari, looking for lions hidden throughout the room. We took turns hiding them and finding them.

It was fun to play underneath the parachute and pretend it was a lion's den.
We completed our walk with the "big cats" by dipping stamps with "cat" footprints into different colors of paint and printing them onto paper. As we painted, we told about the adventures of the "big cats"- where they were going, who was traveling with them... 

Some cats were big and some were little, each on his or her own journey...

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