I love hungry hippos, and who can help but love them when my bug is learning some new words and letters with them!
It began with a Hippo and a corn dog box
I realize some days I am very much a zombie. My little T-Rex has decided sleep is for the birds. I deserve to not sleep, but sit up, cuddle him, and re-assure him.I remind him he is indeed my favorite three year old on the planet. I am tired. It is in these moments, genius hits! Mine happened while making yummy corn dogs for my goober. He ran in to the kitchen and I chased him with the empty corn dog box.
Its those weird moments when you have an epiphany. I was giddy, I examined that box like I was looking for the cure for polio. I moved the lid slowly and gauged where I was going to tape for securing, and started planning it out right away. My dear hippo was coming into view.
I absconded with my hubby’s shipping tape and took to the box. I taped both the inside and the outside of the corners for a bit more durability. She was going to be chomping a bit. After I secured everything, I meandered out to the garage and found my trusty paint box, my can of chalkboard paint, and plopped down the framework. after about 3 coats of chalkboard paint, I felt pretty good about the coverage.
The Black Box comes to life.
Now I had a great big black box I could write on, I had to figure out the next step. I grab the always handy box of yarn and decided to make some cute pom pom eyes. Hippo has to see what he is eating! Fortunately, my hubby has a great tool for this. I tease him, but I love this tool. You can whip up a nice pom pom in no time. I used to make my own like the one located here. After getting them completed, I attached a pair of googly eyes to them. Now he’s looking good…see what I did there.
I believe my hippo is starting to look , well like a hippo. He needed ears. Here, I used some card stock here to give my hippo a sense of hearing. Now he was looking like a hippo. I realized, in my excited dance moment, I also needed teeth. Its a hippo after all and those giant tusks kinda make the picture come together. Card stock came back out and ta da!
Feed that Hippo!
Now here is where you can get super creative. I did a mix of the following ideas. taking some 3×5 cards, I created the alphabet in upper and lower case. Then I could toss them around the floors and have the hunt begin. I also found things around the house that began with a certain letter we would be working on. I made a toy pile and then they had to find which toy began with the letter.
The great thing about the chalkboard paint on this hippo, is you can really work on anything. I chose to start with letters, but numbers and finding their name is another fun idea. You can work up to words, and anything else you put your mind to!