It can hardly have escaped your notice, particularly if you are a parent to a school aged child, that today is World Book Day. In the UK this has come to mean small children all over the country dressing up as a book character which is either Absolutely Wonderful or just Incredibly Stressful for frazzled parents and reluctant children alike. This year Bonus Boy’s school have combined it with their work on Shakespeare (he’s going to be 450 this year and is aging pretty well) and the playground this morning was mainly full of Midsummer Night’s Dream fairies and battling Kings.
But, for me, the best bit about World Book Day is the excuse to focus on storytelling, book sharing and memory making, for curling up together in an armchair and indulging in an old favourite or discovering a new gem.
So…It seems to me, having had a little think in my Thotful spot, that it would be a good idea to revisit an old and faithful friend!
Winnie the Pooh has to be an essential ingredient in any child’s literary life and if you haven’t got any on your bookshelves I insist that you buy one right now. They are wise, humorous, gentle. They are the building blocks of life. Words and phrases from Winnie the Pooh pop up in family conversations no matter how old our children get and there is a phrase for every occasion.
A few suggestions for Winnie the Pooh activities for all the family.
Time for a Little Smackeral of Something
‘Pooh always liked a little something at eleven o’clock in the morning, and he was very glad to see Rabbit getting out the plates and mugs; and when Rabbit said, ‘Honey or condensed milk with your bread?’ he was so excited that he said, ‘Both,’ and then, so as not to seem greedy, he added, ‘But don’t bother about the bread, please.’
This seems like the perfect excuse to bake to me and of course it has to be made with honey! Honey cake and honey flapjack are both easy recipes to make with children and are lovely and sticky too! Wash it all down with a tall glass of Honey lemonade and you’re done!
We’re Going on an Expotition
The first person [Pooh] met was Rabbit.
‘Hallo Rabbit,’ he said, ‘is that you?’
‘Let’s pretend it isn’t,’ said Rabbit, ‘ and see what happens.’
‘I’ve got a message for you…we’re all going on an Expotition with Christopher Robin!…we’re going to discover a Pole or something. Or was it a Mole? Anyhow we’re going to discover it.’
Going on an Expotition is always fun. You could track a woozle on a muddy woody walk. In Chapter 3 of Winnie the Pooh ‘In which Pooh and Piglet go hunting and nearly catch a Woozle’ the intrepid pair follow paw marks in the snow. If you are lucky enough to have snow you could have a go at following some tracks but if not I am sure you can find a Forestry Commission woodland near you or a nice piece of muddy ground with some animal tracks to look at.
If you’re not sure what you are tracking the Woodland Trust Nature Detectives website has this very useful download which you can print out and take with you! If the mud is dry you can make casts of the footprints with plaster of Paris. Do let me know if you find a woozle won’t you?!
Of course, you could also try a spot of geocaching – great for walkers and Expotitioners of all ages!
Poohsticks has always been a staple family activity and we cannot pass over a bridge with water running under it without grabbing sticks for a quick go! (A description of the origins of Poohsticks can be found in Chapter 6 of The House at Pooh Corner but basically, for the uninitiated, you drop your sticks on one side of the bridge and all rush over to the other side to see whose stick comes out first!)
Build A House at Pooh Corner
While you’re in the woods why not build a house at Pooh Corner out of sticks for Eeyore?
If it is a wet and windy and you have to have an indoor Expotition, you can organise a Honey Pot treasure hunt or make a treasure map, renaming each room of the house to make it more interesting.
Drape some fabric over a table to make a cave, climb a mountain using ropes and picks (the stairs with rope and imagination), collect treasures to take back to base camp. Don’t forget to pack a little smackeral of something in a backpack for the journey! You can make a house for Eeyore out of chairs and blankets or try to find him a new tail.
I hope this has given you some ideas for wonderful Winnie the Pooh activities! If it has prompted an idea or two in your head or if one pops in while you are sitting in your Thotful spot please tell me all about it in a comment!
Being a reader isn’t just about decoding symbols and discovering the wonderful world of words it is also about becoming a Reader, someone who enjoys reading. The gift of reading will stay with a child for the rest of his/her life, it is The Best Thing you can give. Encouraging that love needn’t be complicated or expensive, spending time choosing stories in the library, making puppet characters and putting on a play, taking an element of a story and exploring it through play, curling up in front of the fire together with a good book – all serve to embed a lifelong love of story.
If you have a World Book Day post then why not join in the #loveliteracy linky below?
I’m co-hosting the #loveliteracy linky with some fantastic bloggers who are all as passionate about reading and books as I am!
Here are just a few of mine which are dotted about all over Thinly Spread!
Now add yours!