Ground Hog's Day

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Crafts & Activities

Playdough Fun
Make up a batch of brown playdough and sculpt groundhogs!

Pop-Up Groundhog Puppet
Here is a fun poem and puppet to help children learn about winter and hibernation - perfect topics for Groundhog Day on February 2. After the children use their puppets to recite the poem, discuss what things their puppets (besides his shadow), the groundhog might see in February. Or, talk about why the groundhog might decide to finish his nap. Older children may be ready to question why the groundhog might or might not see his shadow on this particular day.

WINTER NAP by Georgianne Detner

My backyard has a great big hole
Near where Sprin flowers grow.
On the second fay of February,
I'll watch it from my window.

I want to see our groundhog
Push up his furry head,
'Cause if he sees his shadow,
He'll go back down to bed!

To Make the Puppet:
Cut out a pattern of a grounghog's head and upper body on a piece of tan craft foam or cardboard. Take a 12oz foam cup and sponge paint it green and then add some brown, inside out out, let dry. Glue wiggle eyes onto groundhog and black pom pom for nose. Use a marker and outline groundhog's body, head and ears, and draw mouth, eyebrows, and markings for fur. Then take a 10" length of 1/8 dowel or bamboo skewer and glue to back of ground hog. With cup facing right-side up, gently push other end of dowel through hole until groundhog is inside cup. To work puppet, push dowel up and down so groundhog appears and disappears according to poem's lyrics.

Ground Hog Puppet
Using tacky glue, have child find center of a 2" pom-pom ball, drop a bit of glue and insert a Popsicle stick. Have child spread the ball for the two smaller pom poms for ears, and find and glue the smallest pom pom for a nose. Finish with two googly eyes. Set aside to dry. Paint a toilet tissue roll either brown or green or a combo of the two for the ground. Let dry. When both are dry, the pom-pom puppet goes inside his 'burrow' (the tp roll) and pops out to see his shadow by the child's manipulation of the tongue depressor! Another option would be to use one of the coloring pages (there is one that would work nicely after coloring), and have him pop out of a painted Styrofoam cup, turned upside down, with the Popsicle stick stuck through the bottom.
Submitted by Beth (RYJACK16)

Shadow Measuring
Mark a spot in the playground and have children stand on the spot and measure their shadows in the morning, at noon, and in the afternoon. Write down the measurements and compare them. Discuss the differences in the measurements and why.
Submitted by Ruth (RUTHJRC)

Make Hand Shadows
Shine a bright light (flashlight or lamp) on a bare wall. Show the children how to hold their hands to make shadow animals on the wall.

Search for Shadows
Go outside and look for shadows. The best time for this activity is early in the morning or late afternoon.

Body Shadows
Hang a white sheet in a doorway or from the ceiling. Place a bright light behind the sheet so that the light shines on it. Have the children take turns moving behind the sheet, while the others watch.

Shadow Images
Make silhouettes of each child. Using a lamp or flashlight, project the light so that when the child stand against the wall it creates a shadow of their profile. Trace around the profile of their head. Cut out of black construction paper. Glue to a piece of white paper; display.

Shadow Measurement
Have each child make a paper or cardboard groundhog stick puppet with a Popsicle stick. First thing in the morning, carefully stick the stick into the ground so that the groundhog is standing up. Then measure the shadows at 1 hour intervals throughout the day. Chart shadow lengths. Then at the end of the day, discuss why the lengths and directions of shadows varied.

Shadow Tracing
If the sun is shining on Groundhog Day (and there is no snow on the ground) take the children outdoors to a large paved area. Children work with partners. One child "poses" while the partner traces his shadow on the pavement with a piece of sidewalk chalk. If they are not old enough, you can do the tracing, and then they can color on them.
Submitted by Beth (RYJACK16)

Fun with Shadows
With some large black paper and some large white paper. 12 x 18 construction paper will work. Put a small chair in front of a wall and put the kid in the chair. Tape the black paper on the wall and get a lamp and plug it in and have it shine on the childs head and the paper on the wall. Then quietly talk to the child and trace around their head on the black paper, use a pencil so you can see later where you have to cut. Cut out the black silouete and glue it on the white paper. Hang them all up and have the parents pick out their child's shadow when they pick up and they can take them home. Do it on Ground Hogs day so the kids can see what a shadow is. Don't forget to date the back and sign the name of your day care. These definitely become keepers.
Janet (IJANET1)

Groundhog Shadow Tag
This is a great sunny day game! One child pretends to be the groundhog. The "groundhog" chases the other children and tries to step on their shadow. If the groundhog steps on your shadow you become the new "groundhog" ('IT'). Teach the children that if they squat down their shadow shrinks.

Groundhog Tunnel Game
Have the children line up in a row. (If there are a lot of children, have them line up in two rows.) To form a tunnel, have them stand close together with their legs apart. Let the last person in the row be the groundhog. Have the first groundhog through the tunnel on his or her stomach. When the groundhog reaches the end of the tunnel, have him or her stand up and become a part of the tunnel while a new groundhog starts wiggling through.
Submitted by Beth (RYJACK16)

Find The Groundhog’s Shadow
Trace an outline of a groundhog on black poster board, laminate it, and hide it in your outdoor play area while the children have their backs turned. Let them all search for the shadow. Whoever finds it, hides it next.
Submitted by Beth (RYJACK16)


Song - Oh Mr. Groundhog
(tune of "Up on the Housetop")

Oh Mr. Groundhog, tell what you see
I see my shadow staring back at me
Winter's not over I'm going back to bed
6 more weeks with the covers on my head.

Oh no no, please don't go
Oh no no, please don't go
Winter's not over he's going back to bed
6 more weeks with covers on his head!

I'm a Little Groundhog Activity & Song
With a cloth tunnel (you know the one from Ikea!) - Stand it up on end and have a child climb inside to hide..and pop-up as you sing this song.

I'm A Little Groundhog
(sung to "I'm a Little Teapot")

I'm a little groundhog, furry and brown,
See me pop up while I look around,
If I see my shadow, down I'll go
Six more weeks of winter, oh no!
Mr. Groundhog
(sung to "Frere Jacques")

Mr. Groundhog, Mr. Groundhog.
Are you there? Are you there?
Will you see your shadow?
We all want to know
On this day, Groundhog Day.
One Little Two Little...

One little, two little, three little groundhogs.
Four little, five little, six little groundhogs.
Seven little, eight little, nine little groundhogs.
Sleeping under the ground. I'm a Little Groundhog
Sung to: "I'm a Little Teapot"

I'm a little ground hog
Furry and brown
Pop my head up
Look around
If I see my shadow
Down I go
Six more weeks of winter...

Groundhog, Groundhog
Sung to: "Baa, Baa Black Sheep"

Groundhog, Groundhog,
Please will you come out?
Yes sir, yes sir,
If the sun is not about.
Groundhog, groundhog,
The sun is shining bright.
Then I'll hop back in and curl up tight!
-- Submitted by Beth (RYJACK16)

I'm A Little Groundhog
Sung to: "I'm A Little Teapot"

I'm a little groundhog, it's my day.
Wake and stretch; go out and play.
Down in my burrow, down so deep,
Time to wake up, from my long winter's sleep.
Grumble, grumble, scratch, scratch, grunt, grunt, yawn.
I'll eat my breakfast in your front lawn.
I'm a little groundhog, it's my day.
Wake and stretch; go out and play
-- Submitted by Beth (RYJACK16)

Groundhog, Groundhog

Groundhog, groundhog, don't be shy!
Won't you come outside and spy?
If your shadow you should see,
Winter weather there will be.
If your shadow isn't there,
Spring is surely in the air!
-- Submitted by Beth (RYJACK16)

Little Groundhog

Little groundhog down below,
Underneath the wintry snow.
Come on out and tell us true...
Is Spring coming?
Is Winter through?
-- Submitted by Beth (RYJACK16)


Groundhog Day Dirt Pie
1 box of instant pudding
4 chocolate graham crackers squares
Mix pudding according to pckage directions. Place into four bowls. Crush graham crackers until to ifnd crumbs (and resembles dirt). Sprinkle crumbs on top of the pudding. On a popsicle stick, draw the face of a groundhog with a felt pen...stick into the pudding!

Ground Dogs (Or Hogs-in-a-Hole)
Prepare homemade biscuit dough (or store bought). Slice a wiener in three equal sections. Place one section of wiener in cener of dough, wrap dough around it with the end of the wiener poking out! Bake for about 12 minutes or until dough is browned slightly.

Groundhog Face Cupcakes
Make cupcakes with chocolate frosting. This is the face of the groundhog. Use 2 vanilla wafers as the ears. Place at the top edge of your cupcake. Use 2 blue m&m's for the eyes. Use a brown m&m for the nose. Use 2 white mini marshmallows for the teeth.
Submitted by Beth (RYJACK16)

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