Rainforest Crate!


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Coinciding with the hot, humid summer weather, our latest offering from Koala Crate was all about the rainforest.

The first project, a Butterfly Puppet, as actually quite a bit like a butterfly craft we put together recently from Ranger Rick magazine, illustrating how caterpillars morph into butterflies. The one in this crate simplified things greatly, providing us with a felt butterfly puppet body that we needed only to decorate.
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Travis really took charge on this one with his own vision of how the caterpillar and butterfly should look. We didn’t end up with a version that matched the sample, therefore, but I loved his final caterpillar creation.

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You can talk with your child about symmetry as you decorate the butterfly portion, but rather than insist on a symmetrical orientation to our stickers, I let Travis design it the way he wanted.
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Folding the wings in and out of the puppet’s body for the transformation was a delight every time.

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Flutter flutter!

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Next up as the Musical Rainstick. Cap one end of the provided cardboard tube with a provided plastic cap. Next fold up the indents in the provided cardboard insert; this will help the beads fall at a slower “rainy” rate. Here we are very seriously adding the wooden beads:

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Time to shake shake shake! This was so fun that it was a little while before we decorated the rainstick with the rainforest stickers.

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The rainstick gets used again in the final project, a Balancing Tree Game. Punch out the cardboard branches, and fold the ends up.

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Use a Velcro dot to adhere these branches to one end of the rainstick. You can also add a few more of the rainforest stickers.

Now the challenge was to fill the rainforest tree with pom-pom leaves using the provided tweezers. This was great fine motor skill practice.

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A note of caution: The game is hard, even for grown-ups, so be prepared to ease some preschooler frustration.

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As a nice touch, the pom-poms store handily in a provided pouch when you’re done with play.

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As a final craft, we put together a suggested Venus flytrap. Parents, cut little triangles all along the edges of a paper plate. Use markers to color the inside of the plate red and the outside green.

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We didn’t even finish coloring before Travis eagerly made his flytrap chomp on some pom-pom flies!

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Oh no, can a Venus flytrap eat a whole caterpillar?

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I loved seeing Travis’s imagination at work with this one.