Dr. Seuss Day is coming, Dr. Seuss Day is coming!
March 2, once known as Theodore Geisel’s birthday, has become the day that we educators, librarians, and book lovers celebrate the author’s great works. In fact, we’ve taken over the entire month of March. If you’re looking forward to doing some Seuss-y activities with your littles, look no further. I. Am. So. Excited.
Horton Hears a Who is one of my favorite-ist Seuss books. I love Horton’s pertinacity, his absolute insistence upon caring for creatures he can’t even see. If my life’s theme is Have Courage and Be Kind, then Horton kinda has to be my hero, because he is both of those things incarnate. And there are lots of activities can your littles enjoy along with this book.
Horton Hears a Who Activities
Seuss is famous for his rhyming stories. Rhyme is one of the easiest forms of poetry to teach your littles. Their poems can be short or long, with 3-syllable lines or 10-syllable lines, whatever they wish. Here’s a free download to help them get started. The first page is a Poet-tree, and all they have to do is add rhyming words to the branches. The second is lined paper on which to write a poem using the words from their tree. Love this!!
What better animal science to study than a unit about elephants? This free download has lots of information about our favorite pachyderms, plus some worksheets to help your littles remember what they’ve learned.
You can also discuss with your littles how it’s possible for Horton to hear the Whos when no one else can. This can open up a conversation about sound frequency and how ears work. Here’s a graph from School for Champions that shows the frequency range of several animals to help get you started.
Horton Gallon-Jug Night Light
O.M.G. I am so excited about this super-cute craft. It’s pretty amazing. I mean, you’re welcome.
- 1 empty, cleaned gallon jug (I used a vinegar jug, but a milk jug would work just as well)
- Grey, black, and white craft paint (and if your out of grey like I was, grab a jar and mix some black and white)
- 1 large sheet grey craft foam (oh, and if you’re out of grey craft foam, I discovered it paints up quite well…)
- Lit Mama’s Horton Night Light Template
- 1 pair googly eyes
- Tacky or school glue
- LED tea light
- Sharp knife for a grown up to use
What you do:
- Paint your gallon jug grey from top to bottom.
- While the jug is drying, cut your ear and trunk templates from the craft foam.
- Once your grey paint is dry, paint rounded triangles on either side of the jug handle for Horton’s eyes
- Following the pic above, paint a mouth on Horton about 3 inches below the handle.
- Using a sharp knife (obviously a grown-up job), cut 1 inch slots in your jug about an inch back from Horton’s eyes. This is where the ears go.
- Tuck the squared end of each ear into the slots you just cut.
- Now use your knife to cut a 2-inch slot just below your jug handle. Tuck the top of the trunk into the slot.
Turn the jug over and use your knife to cut a 2-inch by 2-inch X near the bottom directly behind the handle. Cut out the area around the X to make an opening in which to place the tea light.
Turn the tea light on and watch Horton glow!
Littlest figured since the monkeys gave Horton such a hard time in the story, a good treat to go with the story would be Monkey Bread.
What you need:
Note: You can, of course, used canned biscuits for this recipe. But it only takes like 2 minutes to whip up a batch of basic baking powder biscuits, and you know what’s in them. I like being able to pronounce all my ingredients. If you opt for canned, I won’t look down on you. It’s just–making stuff from scratch is So Much More Fun!
FOR THE BISCUITS:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 Tablespoon sugar
- 4 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
- 2/3 cup milk
- 1 egg
FOR THE YUMMINESS:
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 stick butter (1/2 cup)
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
What you do:
FOR THE BISCUITS: (Skip this part if you’re using canned. In that case, just cut each biscuit into quarters and move on to the yumminess.)
- Sift flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt together into a large bowl. Most recipes leave the sifting out of baking powder biscuits, but I’ve found that sifting really lightens the biscuit and makes it extra yummy. So sift!
- Cut butter into flour mixture with pastry blender (I just use my fingers) until it resembles a coarse meal.
- Mix egg and milk in a small bowl. Stir into flour mixture.
- Now, listen. Most recipes also don’t mention kneading your biscuit dough. But I drop a light coating of flour over my dough right in the bowl and knead it for about a minute. It also improves the texture. I’ve never had someone new try my biscuits and not exclaim, “How do you get them so light and fluffy?!” Now you know my secrets. Sift and Knead.
- Your biscuit dough is ready.
FOR THE YUMMINESS:
- Preheat oven to 350F
- Lightly grease a 9-inch cake or pie pan (or use a Bundt pan if you want. I don’t have one. I’m Not Pouting.)
- Mix sugar and cinnamon together in a large bag.
- Smile at my cool-ass coffee mug that honors the Greatest German Shepherd in the World.
- Pinch one-inch sections off your biscuit dough, roll it into a ball, and drop it into the sugar mixture.
- When you have 6-8 balls in there, shake them around to coat them with the mixture.
- Really, don’t do any more than 8 at a time, or they’ll start to stick together and you won’t get the whole surface covered.
- Place the biscuit balls in your greased pie pan.
- Over medium heat, melt the butter and brown sugar together, stirring occasionally. Boil for 1 minute.
- Pour butter mixture over biscuit balls.
- Bake for 35 minutes.
- Allow bread to cool for about 10 minutes, then watch your littles tear it apart like mad monkeys!
Whoa. I am in love with this Story Time. I hope you and your littles are, too.
Have fun and happy reading!