So I say it a lot but The Very Hungry Caterpillar really is my favourite book for toddlers and preschoolers – in fact, it’s one of the books that I bought when I discovered as I was first pregnant with my eldest to start our children’s book collection. It’s also one of the books we have revisited time and time again here on Rainy Day Mum creating activities and crafts from back from our first ever post which was creating butterflies from toddler process art through to more recently learning to read, spell and recognize the days of the week with my school age daughter. It’s one of those books that has stood the test of time and I bet if you read it as a child you can probably remember the general story if not some of the things that the Very Hungry Caterpillar eats. So here we go our favourite Very Hungry Caterpillar Crafts and Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar
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The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle was first published in 1969 since them it has been a firm favourite with parents, carers, and educators. This lovely book features a caterpillar that as the title suggests is VERY HUNGRY and he eats an amazing amount of food before one day he doesn’t and then he changes.
I love using this book for a bugs theme, life cycles, colours, foods, spring, summer. It’s one of those books that you can fit into lots of areas as well as read just for fun.
Looking for Butterfly Printable Activities, then check out our Butterfly Activity Project Pack. With ideas for preschool to learn maths, writing and all about the life cycle.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Crafts for Toddlers and Preschoolers
Get creative and make this cardboard tube caterpillar that turns into a butterfly a perfect craft for making after having read the book.
At the end of the book, the caterpillar turns into a beautiful butterfly – this Stained Glass Effect butterfly is ideal to make to create some beautiful butterflies of your own.
A really simple craft for kids for after reading the book in springtime is this Cress Caterpillar – a mixture of a craft and some simple science for toddlers and preschoolers to see how plants grow.
I love getting creative in the kitchen and we made some delicious Butterfly Cakes and Sugar Cookie Caterpillars to eat after we had read the book.
We turned scribbles and colouring into some very simple Caterpillar Puppets that munched their way through the leaves just like the caterpillar did in the book.
Take a turn at finger painting and create some butterflies – there is no aim for symmetry or precision just creating colourful and vibrant butterflies.
Do you remember making butterflies from folded paper when you were young – it was one of my favourites – create the design on one side and then watch as you create a butterfly that can then be cut out to display.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers to Play and Learn
One of the reasons that I love The Very Hungry Caterpillar so much is all of the different areas that are covered in it. From food to colours, to days of the week, numbers and of course the life cycle of the caterpillar. We created this fun activity to learn the days of the week based on the book as the hungry caterpillar ate through the different food for the days of the week.
We love playing with play dough here and this Very Hungry Caterpillar inspired invitation to play with playdough is perfect for kids to play with and retell the story.
Very Hungry Caterpillar Inspired Toys for Kids
There are so many toys, accessories, home decor etc… that you can buy based on this classic children’s storybook but I’ve found a few of my favourites that I would love to share with you.
Sitting in my guest room I have a bag of fabrics that I bought before my eldest was born to make a Very Hungry Caterpillar quilt for him. It’s still there from 2009. Instead, I did get hold of a Very Hungry Caterpillar quilt made up and it was used when he was a toddler and preschoolers before he outgrew the bed. I’ve saved it now for if or when he has his own children to pass down to them.
Stacking boxes and nesting them together again is a fantastic activity for kids. I love this set of Stacking and Nesting Cubes from The World of Eric Carle based on The Very Hungry Caterpillar as it includes the days of the week, words, numbers, colours and has the benefit of stacking and nesting as well.
Encourage your own butterfly to lay some little eggs in your garden by planting some butterfly-friendly flowers and this Very Hungry Caterpillar garden set means that your kids will come along and join you outside growing and nurturing their own garden.
Games are a great way to spend quality time with your kids and many games for preschoolers have educational value to them. That is the case with this Let’s Feed the Very Hungry Caterpillar Game which works on counting, collecting and building to transform your caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly.
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Cerys is a marine biologist, environmental educator, teacher, mum, and home educator from the UK. She loves getting creative, whether it is with simple and easy crafts and ideas, activities to make learning fun, or delicious recipes that you and your kids can cook together you'll find them all shared here on Rainy Day Mum.