CLIFFORD'S BIRTHDAY PARTY

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Circle Time Presentation

Show the children the cover of the book without reading the title. Often simply showing the cover of a Clifford book brings applause from the audience collected on the circle time rug. Ask thechildren how old Clifford is and they will know by the one candle on the birthday cake. Read CLIFFORD'S BIRTHDAY PARTY and pause after each present is given for the children to predict whatClifford will do with this present. At the end of the reading, the children will request that you read it a second time. End circle time by announcing the Clifford activities for the day.

STORY STRETCHER

For Art: Presents For Clifford

What the children will learn-
To extend the story with a different present for Clifford

Materials you will need-

  • Construction paper or manilla paper
  • gift-wrap ribbons
  • thumbtacks or tape
  • choice of media-crayons, markers, chalks, paints, colored pens

What to do-

  1. Make a bulletin board background of huge, enormous Clifford, the Big Red Dog.
  2. Ask the children to draw or paint a picture of a present they would like to give Clifford.
  3. When the pictures are completed, roll them up like a scroll and tie a gift-wrap ribbon around them. Thumbtack or tape the ribbons to the background of Clifford, the Big Red Dog.
  4. Later during the birthday party open the pictures to see what the presents are.

Something to think about-
The Clifford background for the bulletin board could also be made by the children. You can cut a huge Clifford from two pieces of butcher papertaped together and the children can take turns painting him red. Then cut him out and staple him to the bulletin board.

ANOTHER STORY STRETCHER

For Art: Making Party Hats

What the children will learn-
To construct and decorate a party hat

Materials you will need-

  • Sheets of construction paper
  • scissors
  • scraps of gift-wrap paper and construction paper
  • stapler
  • gluesticks
  • tape
  • ribbons

What to do-

  1. Show the children how to roll a sheet of construction paper into a cone shape.
  2. Staple it in place and round off the edge that will be on top of the head.
  3. Bring out collage materials, such as scraps of brightly colored construction paper, giftwrap paper and bits of ribbon.
  4. Let the children decorate their party hats by gluing on bits of brightly colored paper and ribbons.
  5. Cut ribbons long enough to tie under the children's chins.
  6. Staple the ribbons onto the hats and cover the staple with tape so that the paper is reinforced and the ribbon doesn't pull loose from the paper.
  7. Put the hats away until it is time for "Clifford's Birthday Party."

Something to think about-
Younger children will have difficulty waiting to wear their hats. Let them wear them as soon as they are made.

STORY STRETCHER

For Cooking And Snack Time: Clifford's Birthday Party

What the children will learn-
To decorate a cake

Materials you will need-

  • Cake or cakes
  • frosting
  • spatulas
  • bowl of warm water
  • cans of different colored cake decorating icing
  • plates
  • napkins
  • glasses
  • forks
  • milk

What to do-

  1. Bake the cake or cakes ahead of time.
  2. Have some children frost the cake using a spatula. Dipping the spatula in warm water helps the frosting spread more easily.
  3. Let other children decorate the cake by using the cans of colored icing which spreads when they push on the nozzles.
  4. Serve the cake at snack time with glasses or cartons of cold milk.
  5. Sing "Happy Birthday" to Clifford.
  6. Stack Clifford's picture presents on each table and let the children take turns telling about their presents for Clifford.

Something to think about-
Younger children find it easier to decorate long flat sheet cakes. Older children can help bake the cakes one day and decorate them on another. Ifyou have parents or grandparents who decorate cakes for a hobby, ask them to come to class and show the children some of their special tricks and the special tools they use.

STORY STRETCHER

For Housekeeping And Dress-up Corner: Pet Supply Store

What the children will learn-
That caring for animals requires many different supplies

Materials you will need-

  • Leashes
  • bowls
  • empty dog food and cat food cans
  • flea collars
  • chewy toys
  • traveling cages
  • blankets
  • baskets

What to do-

  1. Turn the housekeeping and dress-up area into a creative dramatics center and call it the "Clifford and Friends Pet Supply Store."
  2. Invite parents to send in pet supplies, being careful that they have been thoroughly cleaned.
  3. With the children, improvise display areas and materials from around the classroom.
  4. Add a cash register, note pads, order blanks, pens and pencils and other supplies for the check-out stand.
  5. Leave the pet supply store up for at least a week and the children will add props and invent roles.

Something to think about-
Add reference materials on different pets and their needs so that the children role play reading to find information and directing their customersto books about pets.

STORY STRETCHER

For Music And Movement: Party Piņata

What the children will learn-
How to play with a piņata as a part of birthday celebrations

Materials you will need-

  • Piņata
  • scarf
  • yardsticks
  • blindfolds

What to do-

  1. Show the children the part of CLIFFORD'S BIRTHDAY PARTY where he is blindfolded and hits the piņata until it breaks.
  2. Uncover the piņata from where you have it hidden under a scarf.
  3. Hang the piņata in a place where it is safe for the children to hit at it.
  4. Let the children take turns hitting the piņata with the yardsticks until it bursts, spreading its contents on the floor.
  5. Then the children can enjoy scrambling for the treats, candies or little toys that were inside. Ask the children to take only one treat.

Something to think about-
This activity is a good one to do outside by tying the piņata from a tree limb. For young children do not use a blindfold. Older children can makea piņata as an art project.

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