Crocodiles are fascinating to toddlers because of their rows of razor-sharp teeth, dangerous bite and lizard-like appearance. Crocodiles are a scary animal that kids love to imitate, re-creating its snapping jaws with their arms. You can start your crocodile activity off by asking your toddler to imitate a crocodile in this way, while shouting snap, snap, snap! This should get the excitement going.
Sing this song about crocodiles, using a tune that fits. "Five little monkeys sitting in a tree, along came the crocodile, very quietly. The first monkey said, 'I bet you can't catch me,' then snap!" Continue repeating the rhyme, but replace five with four, then four with three, and so on. The last verse goes: "One little monkey sitting in a tree, along came the crocodile, very quietly. The first monkey said, 'I bet you can't catch me,' then snap! You missed me."
Show the toddlers an imaginary pond area. Choose one child to be the crocodile in the pond. The other toddlers must take turns to cross the pond. If they are caught, they instead become the crocodile.
Make a crocodile puppet with your toddler. Draw a crocodile head onto green card stock and cut it out. Stick on some white paper circles for eyes with some black pencilled-on pupils. Stick on some small white paper triangles for teeth. Cut out a tail shape from the green card, then cut out a 4-inch-by-12-inch rectangle from green paper. Lay the paper rectangle out, oriented vertically in front of you. Fold over the bottom edge about 1 inch, then turn the paper over and fold the new bottom edge another inch. Repeat this over and over until all the paper has been entirely folded into a zigzag. Open the paper zigzag flat and stick the tail to one end and the head to the other. Tape the top of a lolly stick to the reverse of the head and another to the reverse of the tail. Hold the lolly sticks and move the crocodile like you would a puppet.
Visit the local library with your toddler. Ask the librarian to help you find books about crocodiles or that contain crocodiles. This is a valuable activity to do with your toddler because not only does she get to go on an outing, but it shows her how to search for material in a library. Show your toddler how to find the book, what section of the library to look in, and how to put books back properly. Once you have your crocodile book, take it home. Read the book to your toddler and ask her questions about the pictures. Ask her to spot things on the page like the crocodile's teeth, feet and eyes. Speaking enthusiastically will create interest and enjoyment.
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