Animals are amazing and you can learn so much by watching them at zoos, in their natural habitats, reading books, and looking up information about them with our web resources: https://mppl.org/kids/got-homework/.
Live Web Cams and livestreams are a great way to see animals while staying home this winter. These cameras are mounted in animal enclosures and near animals’ habitats in the wild. By watching them you can get a glimpse of what these animals do daily. Here are some of our favorites:
Hanukkah is a Jewish holiday taking place for eight nights. This year, it started on Thursday, December 10 and ends Friday, December 18. It is also known as the Festival of Lights. Jewish people celebrate by lighting a candle on a menorah each night, eating special foods, and sometimes exchanging gifts. Many also like to play with a spinning top called a dreidel.
To celebrate, you can make your own dreidel and play a fun game to win treats of your choosing.
1. Draw equal triangles on your cardboard. You can do this by drawing two diagonal lines across the brown side of cardboard.
2. Draw the Hebrew letters below on each triangle.
3. Have a grownup poke a pencil in the middle of the cardboard square. Now you can spin it on the pencil tip!
Everyone gets the same amount of a small object- raisins, or stickers, or Hanukkah gelt (gold-foiled covered chocolate). You’ll be playing for these pieces.
How do insects survive the long, cold winter? In several different ways!
Some Overwinter as Eggs
Praying mantids spend the winter as eggs, waiting for the warmer spring temperatures to hatch. Both the native Carolina Praying Mantis and the Chinese Praying mantis are found in Illinois.
Some Overwinter as Larvae
Woolly bear caterpillars, the larval form of the Isabella Tiger Moth, spend the winter curled up under leaves.
Some Overwinter as Nymphs
Insects that have an incomplete metamorphosis only have three stages of life: egg, nymph and adult. Dragonflies spend the winter as nymphs underwater will stay active under the ice. They emerge in spring as adults.
Some Overwinter as Pupae
Some moths and butterflies will stay in their pupal cases (chrysalides or cocoons) and come out in the spring as adults.
Some Overwinter as Adults
Monarch butterflies migrate to Mexico in the fall and wait for the spring to arrive to begin their journey back home.
This easy recipe creates a wonderfully spicy smelling playdough that will last weeks if kept in a sealed container.
Playing with playdough helps with fine motor skills, hand strength, and creativity. You can also use it to make letters and build letter recognition. You can add toothpicks, beads, dried pasta, googly eyes, pipe cleaners, and even feathers to allow for more creative play.