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Story Time: Make Way for Ducklings


Story Time: Make Way for Ducklings

Maybe you forgot about this book.  Or maybe you’re young enough that you’ve never had the pleasure of reading this sweet Caldecott winner.  Perhaps you’ve read it with your littles and didn’t think to include some awesome projects with it.

Whatever your history with Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey, I’ve got the goods, my friend. 

We’re about to have a whole lotta fun. (It’s like the Led Zepplin song, only tamer.)


For your little littles, there’s an easy peasy English lesson you can do.  Those 8 duckling have some pretty acky names, and we’re going to alphabetize them.  Want a free printable for it?  Done.

Make Way for Ducklings Alphabet PrintableFor older littles, it would be tons of fun to imagine what the ducklings think of the Public Garden.  Do they miss their old home by the river?   Do they like the peanuts the humans throw to them?  Have them write a new chapter to the story, describing the ducklings reactions to the pond.  And yeah yeah, I’ve got the free stuff.

Make Way for Ducklings New Chapter PrintableScience

The Mallards stay at the river to hatch the ducklings because it is safer than the pond for new babies and they are beginning to molt.  Here’s a free printable about molting to help your littles understand the science behind why a bird loses its feathers once a year.  This mini unit includes fun facts, vocabulary, a crossword puzzle, and a word search.

Learn About Ducks and Molting-Make Way for Ducklings


Puff Paint Duckling

Puff Paint Duckling

This is a two-part craft because you’re going to make some super cool puff paint before you paint your duckling.  How cool is that?

Puff Paint Recipe

puff paint supplies

What you need:

What you do:

puff paint ingredients

  • For each color, pour shaving cream and glue into a sandwich bag
  • Add enough paint to color your puff paint

mixing puff paint

  • Close bag and squish ingredients around with your fingers until mixed

Duckling Craft

all duckling supplies

What you need:

  • Prepared puff paint
  • Lit Mama’s Duckling template
  • Paintbrush
  • Blue construction paper
  • Glue stick
  • Scissors
  • Raffia (in different colors if you have it)
  • Googly eye
  • Blue crayon

What you do:

duckling position

  • Print out the Duckling template and cut it out
  • Turn the blue construction paper so it is like the landscape format and position your duckling about 3/4 of the way up
  • Use the glue stick to glue the template to the paper

dabbing paint

  • Using a paintbrush, dab the yellow paint onto the duck’s body being careful to leave the eye clear of paint
  • Dab the paint on thick–the thicker you paint, the puffier your duck will be
  • Dab the orange paint onto the bill

painted duckling

  • Glue the googly eye onto the eye of the template

gluing reeds

  • While your puff paint dries, add some reeds to your duck’s pond
  • Using school glue, make vertical lines just beneath the duck’s body and stick raffia to the glue

blue crayon

  • With the blue crayon, make half circles under the reeds so it looks like water ripples.


I’m crushing hard on this one.  You can’t get much more 3D than that!


Peanut Butter Honey Balls

Peanut Butter Honey Balls

I know.  We’ve made these before for another Story Time.  But they’re delicious and your littles can pretend to be little ducks snacking on peanuts you throw their way.  So let’s make them again.  Because you already know how.

And yum.

What you need:

  • 1 cup oats
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla

What you do:

  • Dump all that in a bowl
  • Stir it around
  • When it’s all mixed together, grease your hands
  • Roll into 1-inch balls

Still just as easy as last time.  Boo-yah.


There are some other cool things you can do here.

Play duck duck goose.  Don’t be shy.  Run around in that silly circle till you’re breathless with laughter.  Yeah yeah.

Check out this cool map of Boston’s attractions and let your littles point out the different places Mr. and Mrs. Mallard visit.  Because geography.

For that matter, get out a map of the U.S. and let your littles find Boston.

I told ya I had the stuff on this one.  Truth is, there were about 5,000 crafts I wanted to make with you, but I loved the 3D-ness of the Puff Paint Duckling best.  I hope your littles like it as much.

Wanna know the cool part?  The whole time I’ve been putting this together for you, my seven ducks have been quacking away in the background.  Mood music.

Love wins,


Story Time: Make Way for Ducklings - Crafts and activities for the picture book


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KT Brison

KT Brison is a former children’s librarian and educator who gave all that up for the most important job in her life—homeschooling her boys.Though she loves the outdoors and rambling around her farm, she can usually be found with her nose in a book. Any book. As long as it has words.
KT Brison
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About KT Brison

KT Brison is a former children’s librarian and educator who gave all that up for the most important job in her life—homeschooling her boys. Though she loves the outdoors and rambling around her farm, she can usually be found with her nose in a book. Any book. As long as it has words.
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  1. My little guy has just recently discovered this one on our shelf and loves it. I didn’t know you could make puffy paint! Must try. Thank you for sharing this at Booknificent Thursday on Mommynificent.com this week.
    Tina at Mommynificent recently posted…Booknificent Thursday Link Up Party #160My Profile

  2. I love the story Make Way for Ducklings. In fact I like all his books. 🙂 Thanks for sharing these neat ideas at #LMMLinkup! Thanks also for being our guest poster this week!
    Gayl Wright recently posted…Write Free: A 15 Minute ExerciseMy Profile

  3. I love the Puffy Paint Activity! Thanks for the ideas!

  4. Such a fun and neat way to incorporate so many different aspects of learning just on this “one” activity and book! I’ve never made puff paint, but might give it a try now! 🙂

    • ktbrison@gmail.com

      It was my first time, too, Kendall, and I Loved the way it turned out! I’m so glad you liked my ideas. 🙂

  5. This looks like so much fun. Such a great craft. Thanks for sharing with us at Family Joy Blog Link Up Party this week. Have a great week!
    Charlene Asay recently posted…Family Joy Blog Link Up Party #28My Profile

  6. Love these ideas! I’m doing Five in a Row with my youngest and we’re working on The Story of Ping right now. I think I can use these with Ping also, which is awesome! 🙂

    • ktbrison@gmail.com

      That IS awesome! Every time I do a Story Time, I imagine all the other books the activities could work with. I didn’t think of Ping. Fantastic!

  7. How fun is this? Wonderful. Thank you so much for sharing this plan. Having a fun project like this ready to go is such a gift. Much appreciated.

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