We just finished reading Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White. My boys really enjoyed the story! A couple of extension activities came to my mind as we were reading that I’d love to share.
Just as Charlotte loving wove her web for Wilbur and wrote flattering messages, you can do the same for your children!
When I was a kid, my mother taught me how to make Dreamcatchers. It’s been quite a while since I made one, so I needed a refresher. I found a great tutorial on wikiHow. Using Dreamcatchers as my webs, I added a word to each one that describes my little ones and hung it outside their bedroom doors as they slept- just as Charlotte made her web for Wilbur late into the night!
Warning, I am about to get sentimental and cheesy. But, as I was making these webs for my boys I couldn’t help but feel the kind of love that Charlotte was feeling when she made hers. All of my thoughts were of my love for my kids as I was making these. Taking the time to do this, just to let my boys know I love them, really made this project feel special. I did warn you about the cheesiness. Moving on…
To make a Dreamcatcher: Make-a-Dreamcatcher
Some modifications I made to the above tutorial:
- I did not make my own hoop, I bought two hoops from the craft store
- I used different material on the outside of the hoop. Many materials can work on the outside of the hoop, a little trial and error helps me find the one I like the best.
- I left out the attached feather, because I wanted it to resemble a web.
My finished products:
Rarely (ok, never) do my crafts look like they belong in a magazine, but they are definitely made with love
Here they are hung over the doorway for a surprise in the morning:
To extend this even further: I invited my kids to find words in a magazine or in the environment for me to add to their siblings web, just as Templeton found words for Charlotte to use. At night I would put the found words into their brother’s web so they have new words to wake up to. What I also like about this is how it bonds the boys. They are finding positive words about their sibling, making them focus on the good qualities of each other. They also have the satisfaction of knowing they did something nice for their brother.
If your kids are old enough and have the motor skills, they could even make the web themselves. They could surprise a sibling, parent, or friend with a message web. They will really get the feeling for the time it takes to make something like this, therefore better understanding Charlotte’s devotion!
Some Boy (or Girl)
Another activity to extend your child’s experience with the book is to make a poster of themselves with positive words that describe them. Just as Templeton searched for words in the dump to help Charlotte with her web, your kids can search through magazines for positive words for their posters! This is something they can do on their own.
- Using Clip art, print out a web. Or, if your child is a good artist have them draw a web.
- Write Some Boy or Some Girl on the web.
- Attach it to a corner of the page.
- Have the child draw a picture or paste a picture of him or herself.
- Have the child go through magazines to find positive words that describe him or herself.
- Have a sibling or other students find the positive words to put on the bottom.
- Have children only find adjectives to teach the concept of adjectives.
Not only do activities like these help reinforce understanding of the story, they also help kids focus on the positive qualities of themselves and others.
Linked to: Montessori Monday!
To purchase the book on Amazon, click on the book cover: