Baby Toddler Book Club has decided to post a special series on our blog as we participate in the Virtual Book Club for Kids throughout the year! Essentially, Virtual Book Club for Kids (hosted by Toddler Approved, Educator’s Spin on It, and Rainy Day Mum) selects an author each month. Kid bloggers from around the blogging world then link up activities related to books by the featured author. This concept was so perfectly aligned with what we do already, we couldn’t pass up the chance to share what we have already done or, in some cases, try something new with our book club! Our participation in Virtual Book Club for Kids will NOT replace our regularly planned book club meetings (you can see what we’re planning on our Book Lists page), but will simply be in addition.
Nick Sharratt is the October Virtual Book Club for Kids featured author. What’s in the Witch’s Kitchen? was the Nick Sharratt book that I could most easily get my hands on and I am so glad that I stumbled upon this book! My toddler instantly became a HUGE fan. After we read through it the first time, he immediately said: “read it again” and that was the phrase repeated each time we finished reading the book. Not only was it a “win” with my 2 ½ year old, but it was the perfect fit for an October/Halloween themed activity!
The book is a rhyming lift-the-flap book wherein readers get to turn each flap two ways to discover either a yummy treat or a yucky surprise! My son enjoyed telling me on each page which item “we eat” or which item “we don’t eat”. We only had one copy at our book club meeting, so we passed it around and every child had a chance to turn the flaps on a page. Even one of our little baby members enjoyed looking at the pictures and flaps.
After reading the book, we headed into our “witch’s kitchen” to discover which of the book’s “yucky” items were hidden in four sensory boxes. See the photos below to findout what items were hiding and see the kids in discovery mode. The idea was for the kids not to see (aka: remove the items from the box) but just to feel. For the most part, they actually followed those directions fairly well.
After all that yucky-stuff, it was time for some of the witch’s yummy treats! Our choice: Biscuits and “strawberry” (aka: Celestial Seasoning’s Wild Berry Herbal) tea. I made the tea very mild and very cool—I only seeped the bag for a brief moment. My toddler and I made the biscuits in advance of the meeting from a recipe in the Kraft Kitchens Dinner on Hand cookbook. I’ve included our adapted version of their recipe below:
4-Ingredient Biscuits (adapted from source: Kraft Kitchens Dinner on Hand, 2002, pg. 147)
- Mix 2 cups flour with 1 tbsp baking powder. Cut in 1 tub (8 oz) of cream cheese spread (we used plain) to form a crumbly mixture.
- Pour ½ cup milk and a handful of add-ins (we used raisins, but they also suggest shredded cheese, dried cranberries, grated orange peel, or lemon peel) into the cream cheese/flour mixture. Stir until the dough holds together. (We needed to add a little more milk to get the dough to stick together.) On a floured surface, pat dough to a thickness of ¾ inch. Using the top of a glass or a round, square (or other shaped) cookie cutter, cut out 10-12 biscuits. Place on a cookie sheet.
- Bake at 425 degree F for 12 to 15 minutes.
The kids (and the moms for that matter) devoured the biscuits and tea. We had a lot of fun discovering Nick Sharratt and What’s in the Witch’s Kitchen?
Join us in a couple of weeks for our regular October Baby Toddler Book Club meeting featuring a Halloween party, adorable toddlers in cute costumes, and a Very Busy Spider!