Hopping Into Spring With Some Fun Activities!

As we begin to feel hints of warmer weather, we are all starting to see the signs of spring!  Here are some activities you can do at home, at club meetings, or even virtually.

Spring Scavenger Hunt

Make a list of things that your child can find outside or items that remind you of spring.  Send that list to your youth and challenge them to go on a nature walk around their neighborhood and find these items.  They can bring their favorite or most unique item to a club meeting in person or virtually to talk about what they found and what they like about it.

Potato Stamp Pictures.

Take a potato and cut it in half (an adult can help with this).  Then cut an in indented fun spring shape in each half i.e., a flower, a tree, leaf, star or any fun shape.  Then dip the potato into paint and make a fun picture onto  paper.  Youth can do this virtually as an activity or in person, everyone has their own potato and can throw it away when they are done.

Learning Egg Hunt

Get some plastic eggs and in each plastic egg put a question about 4-H, the project area your Cloverbud is interested in, or even a fun spring question. Examples: what is the 4-H motto, what season comes after winter etc.  Along with the question, put in a prewrapped piece of candy or a goody (be aware of any food allergies that your Cloverbuds may have). Now send your Cloverbud on a hunt for the eggs.  Have everyone meet back in the group and read their question. They cannot have their goody until they answer their question correctly.  In 4-H we like to help others, so they can get help from the group. The objective of this activity is to assist them to learn in a fun way.  If you are meeting virtually, have the guardian/parent prepare the plastic eggs with the question you provide.  Give the youth 5 minutes to collect the eggs. Then have youth take turns reading their questions to the group and answering them, again with help from the group if needed.

Spring Story Time

Ask each child to share their favorite spring books. For those that would like to read, have them read their story to the group.  A fun spring book is the Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. An extra activity is to challenge your youth to find a caterpillar and watch its evolution to a butterfly.  Youth can talk about what they observed at the next meeting.  For a snack, make a hungry caterpillar with apple slices for the body, a cherry tomato or strawberry for the face, raisins for the eyes and fruit roll ups or the legs and antennas.

Another book about spring is The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle.  Encourage youth to get some seeds to plant in a cup or do this at a club meeting, (even just grass seeds) and watch them grow.  Other books about spring include: Goodbye Winter. Hello Spring by Kenard Pak, Spring is Here: A Bear and Mole Story by Will Hillenbrand, Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt by Kate Messner, and The Hike by Alison Farrell.

Paper Plate Animals

Use paper plates and construction paper to make a rooster, sheep, or rabbit. You can use your imagination to make other animals, too. For the rooster, fold your plate in half.  Cut out a comb and wattle from red construction paper (or color white paper with a red crayon) and a beak from yellow paper (or color white paper yellow).  Glue on a googly eye or just use a black marker or crayon to make an eye.  Have youth google why roosters have wattles? 

To make a sheep: Fleece is made out of cotton balls you glue onto the plate. Cut out a face and ears with black construction paper or color white paper. Finally cut out eyes to glue on the face. Have youth google why do sheep have fleece?

You can even make a rabbit with cotton for the fur.  Make eyes, nose and whiskers with construction paper or color white paper.  Have the youth google why do rabbits have whiskers?

Crack Some Fun Spring Jokes                                                                                                                                                                                        

Q: Can February March?

A: No, but April May!

Q: What season is it when you are on trampoline?

A: Spring time!

Q:What flowers grow on faces?

A: Tulips

Q: How excited was the gardener about his plants?

A: So excited he wet his plants!

Q: Name bow that can’t be tied

A: Rainbow

Take some time and do something fun outside.  Enjoy the warmer weather!

Celebrate the Snow!

It’s the perfect time of year to celebrate the snow.  A fun, simple craft that your Cloverbuds can complete is making a snow globe.

Let’s get started:

Collect the following simple supplies:

  • A small jar for each child. This can be a baby food jar, a pickle jar or a mason jar.
  • Glitter in silver, white, blue or a combination of all. You can add the reflective snowflake confetti if you like.
  • Water resistant glue and distilled water. Using distilled water ensures that all the minerals and bacteria are removed making sure that you don’t end up with water that can get cloudy.
  • Something to put in your globe. Choose something simple like a small figurine or a toy.  I like collecting items from outside.  Small pine cones, acorns, pretty rocks are all good too (and free!).

What to Do:

  1. Fill the bottom of the jar with glitter.  Be generous, but not overwhelming.  About ¼ of the way full is a good guideline.
  2. Glue the figurine to the bottom of the lid making sure you keep them centered.
  3. Fill the jar with the water leaving approximately ¾ of an inch of air space at the top.
  4. Run the glue around the perimeter of the inside of the lid to form a waterproof seal when you screw the lid in place. Allow to dry for a bit so your glitter doesn’t stick to the glue.

Turn it upside down and enjoy!

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Fall is a wonderful time of year with the cooler temperatures and leaves changing colors, but it also means there is more time spent indoors. For Cloverbud members, it’s important to find fun and educational activities to keep them busy so you don’t hear those dreaded words…. “I’m bored!”

Have you considered the 3 Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) as a topic for a meeting?

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Read a story – There are many books about preventing litter or recycling. A favorite is: The Wartville Wizard by Dan Madden
  • Invite a guest speaker from your Community Action group or local Recycling Facility to talk about the importance of recycling and reducing waste
  • Make a craft out of items that can’t be recycled, for example Tops or Light Catchers made from old CDs. Search for other ideas or make your own! Creativity is part of the fun.

Craft 1: CD Spinning Top

Supplies Needed:

  • Old CDs
  • Plastic Bottle Caps
  • Marble
  • Markers
  • Stickers
  • Hot Glue Gun

Directions:

  1. Decorate the top of your CD, allow kids to use markers and stickers to make it as creative as they want.
  2. Turn the decorated CD over and use a hot glue gun to glue a marble into the center hole of the CD. This step is best done by an adult when working with younger kids.
  3. Turn the CD right side up and glue a plastic cap to the top of the CD. This step also needs to be done by an adult when working with younger kids.
  4. Allow the top to dry! Then use the plastic cap to spin your top.

Craft 2: Light Catchers

Supplies Needed:

  • Old CDs
  • Ribbon
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Tacky glue
  • Decorations –Silk Flowers, Markers, Stickers

Directions:

  1. Decorate the top of your CD, allows kids to use markers, stickers, or glue on sequins. Remember that the back will be attached to ribbon, so they don’t need to decorate that side.
  2. If silk flowers are being used, use a hot glue gun to glue the flower into the center hole of the CD. This step is best done by an adult when working with younger kids. Allow the glue to dry before attaching to the ribbon.
  3. After the CDs are all decorated, use hot glue to attach the backside side of the CD to the ribbon. Leave some space at the beginning and end of the CD strand and between each CD.
  4. Hang the ribbon in a spot where it can catch light or in an area that needs brightening up!

No-Sew Sock Bunny

Spring has arrived and so have the sights and sounds of baby chicks and baby bunnies.  Whether you are looking outside, walking through the holiday/seasonal section at the store, or viewing the live animals for sale at your local farm store, bunnies are easy to find.

A No-Sew Sock Bunny is an easy craft for Cloverbuds.  It also provides the opportunity to share additional information about the benefits and responsibility of owning and caring for your own animal.

Supplies Needed:

  • Cup
  • Funnel
  • Permanent Marker (fine point tip)
  • Ribbon
  • Rice
  • Rubber bands
  • Scissors
  • Sock

Steps:

  1. Use the cup and funnel to pour rice into the sock up to the bottom of the heel. Use a rubber band to seal off the sock and keep the rice inside.
  2. Use a rubber band to section off the head from the body of the bunny.
  3. Depending on the length of the sock, part of the unused sock may need trimmed to shorten the ears of the rabbit. Use the scissors to cut the sock into two ears above the head and trim each ear to have a curved tip to the ear.
  4. Cut a piece of ribbon and tie it around the neck of the bunny to hide the rubber band.
  5. Use the permanent marker to mark one small dot for each eye and mark an X for the mouth of the bunny.
  6. Make a tail using a small rubber band to section off a small part of the back of the bunny’s body to form a round tail. You can also glue part of a white cotton ball to the bunny as an alternative tail option.

*Adjustments may be necessary based on the size of sock utilized for the craft.