The first baby book club meeting is in the history books (ridiculously cliché pun intended)! Our little group of seven moms and seven babies (will be eight at our next meeting) gathered together one rather humid morning to read, Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You? by Dr. Suess. This clever little rhyming board book is a story about Mr. Brown who can make all sorts of sounds, like “Moo, Moo,” “Boom, Boom, Boom,” and my son’s favorite, “Knock, Knock,” to which he knocks on the page of the board book every time. I personally enjoy reading the book out loud to my little guy because it can be read almost rhythmically.
Since the book was all about sounds, we made rain sticks. (On one of the pages, Mr. Brown sounds like the rain, “Dibble, Dibble, Dibble, Dibble, Dopp, Dopp, Dopp…”)
To make the rain sticks, cover one end of a paper towel roll with a doubled up sheet of aluminum foil that is just big enough to cover the opening (fasten with a rubber band). Fill the paper towel roll with loosely crumpled up balls of aluminum foil. Fill the paper towel roll with a small amount of dried rice. Cover the other end of the roll with another sheet of doubled up aluminum foil (fasten with a rubber band). Let your baby turn the roll upside down to hear the sound of rain. Source (and more details): http://www.parentsconnect.com/parenting-your-kids/activities/crafts/Pitter_Patter.html.
Some of the babies helped pour the rice or crinkle up the foil, but the rice in the large plastic bin was by far the star. They could hardly contain their curiosity and loved playing in it (many literally got in the tub of rice)! Knowing that this would be a fun play activity, I threw funnels, scoops, and other “sand” toys in the rice bin in advance.
Keeping with our sound theme, we needed a snack that made a sound. At first I struggled with what food would make a sound but still be appropriate for one-year olds. It was Mr. Brown, however, that provided the inspiration when he made the noise, “Pop, Pop, Pop, Pop”. What food pops? Why Rice Krispies snap, crackle, and pop of course! So we ate Rice Krispies cereal in whole milk. Although, I discovered later, while feeding left over cereal to my little one, that he loved the cereal mixed with applesauce, yogurt, or other fruit purees and the cereal still “popped.” This would have been a good option for the one baby under a year who was not yet consuming cow’s milk.
I always feel a little bad playing with food like rice when there are so many people who need food to eat. To keep with our read, play, eat, give theme, our donation this month was an extra box of cereal and a bag of rice. Each month, we’ll try to purchase a little extra food or provide leftovers as a donation to those in need. It’s not much, but it’s a start. Maybe we’ll continue to think of other creative ways to give.
The following is a photo slide show of our first meeting. Enjoy!
Next month: I Spy Little Books