my 3 year old is in love the The Very Hungry Caterpillar, so we made a birthday party out of it!
he can “read” you the entire story and when you get him out of the tubby he likes to be all wrapped up in a “cocoon” and then emerge as a nude butterfly and run down the hall several times flapping his new wings. hilarious.
if the art and story and brilliance of eric carle has not hit you yet, i encourage you to check out his books and then spend some time on The Official Eric Carle Web Site. it is genius.
whilst trying to think of a birthday party theme that tyson would love for his third birthday and while trying to stay within my budget, i looked online to see what other teachers and parents had done with The Very Hungry Caterpillar. my creativity took off. let me share with you some of my favorite parts of the party …all done on a tight budget.
you will notice that the cupcakes are varying shades of green. if you have ever seen eric carle’s art (painted and cut tissue paper), then you know why it is so important to stay away from one-color/texture when trying to create a party in the theme of his art.
i love to decorate my kitchen light fixture. as you will see a few pictures below, i wrapped and weaved tulle through it and attached ribbon, streamers and even a pinwheel that i couldn’t take my eyes off of at the grocery. we also hung these lovely homemade coffee filter butterflies. take a coffee filter, color it with washable markers (the more ink the better) and use a spray bottle full of water to soak them. the colors bleed together and create this tissue paper-like effect. (some people use food coloring instead of markers, but i can never get the colors to bleed the way i like them to.) then i just take a pipe cleaner, pinch the filter in half and twist to make the body of the butterfly and the antennae. they were hung from the the light fixture using paper clips and fishing line.
you may also notice The Very Hungry Caterpillar inspired art on the sliding door. (and yes, that is snow outside although it was may!) the boys did all the painting for the leaves and the sun. we painted for a few months here and there, whenever we wanted to, in preparation for this window art. i then cut out the pieces and hung them on the window. we hot glued those sparkly puffy balls to the leaves to look like caterpillars.
here is the food display. if you are familiar with the book, you know that the very hungry caterpillar ate through quite a long list of food before he felt full and curled up into his cocoon. for tyson’s birthday dinner and dessert, we had everything the very hungry caterpillar had in the book. (apples, pearls, plums, oranges, strawberries, lollipops, sausage, pickles, swiss cheese, salami, watermelon, ice cream cones, pie, chocolate cake, etc.)
i used these multicolored glass beads to give the polka-dot feel like the front and back covers have on the book. then using screen shots from THIS link, i made little signs for each food the caterpillar ate and what day he ate it on. the food was arranged in order of the book on the counter. the outlined food is in the same style of the book and i colored the food in (just with crayons) in eric carle style.
it was a smashing success …and we still have those decorations hanging in the r house. now to think what we will do for gavin’s second birthday in august.