Mad About Munsch: 5 Activities Bringing Kids' Stories to Life | Parenting from the Heart, Robert Munsch, the paper bag princess, Murmle Murmle, the Fire Hall, the Fire station, play dough recipe, learning through play, sensory play, toddler activities, budget friendly activities, language development, linguistic development, promoting literacy, kids lit, children's lit

Mad About Munsch: 5 Extension Activities for Kids’ Stories

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Right now, I’m on a big Robert Munsch kick. Here are some of the fun things we’ve done with some of his favourite books of mine (most have been related to play dough). To save money, we bought most ingredients in the bulk section of our local grocer. I bought a package of airtight containers for $1 to store the dough. Play dough should be sealed, and will store in the refrigerator for up to three months.

 I love children’s books. There is something about the primitive humour, the whimsy, the enticing illustrations, and the gate of the almost lyrical prose that is so nostalgically wonderful. They evoke imagination in such a delightful and unlimited way. The library was such an indulgence in my childhood; the time we frequented the most was during the summer when leisurely time seemed to be unending. When each warm, sun-filled day rolled into the next, my mom would take us to the only place we were allowed to completely gorge; our one un-rationed indulgence. She would take our armloads of books home in a large Rubbermaid container or a laundry hamper, and we would pour over them daydreaming of the stories coming to life.

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At a Bed & Breakfast, not my decorating taste 😛

Because of these fond memories, I could not wait to start reading to my first-born. An early crawler, and walker, there was only a brief time when she was willing to sit for longer children’s books. Her desire to take on her environment meant very short stories were all I could hold her attention with. Shortly after her second birthday, there came a greater thirst for language. As such and thanks to her one year old brother’s elation at the prospect of having ANYthing read to him, we have been able to revisit books we once read, and take on new ones. To say I’m excited is a bit of an understatement. And as such, I have gotten all too eager to bring these stories to life.

Right now, I’m on a big Robert Munsch kick. Here are some of the fun things we’ve done with some of his favourite books of mine (most have been related to play dough). To save money, we bought most ingredients in the bulk section of our local grocer. I bought a package of airtight containers for $1 to store the dough. Play dough should be sealed, and will store in the refrigerator for up to three months.

Mad About Munsch: 5 Extension Activities for Kids’ Stories

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Mud Puddle

Jule Ann steps outside and a mud puddle jumps on her head? Seriously? The ridiculousness of this book is just too fun not to enjoy! In attempt to make our own mud puddle to come to life, I tried my hand at two different recipes.

Right now, I’m on a big Robert Munsch kick. Here are some of the fun things we’ve done with some of his favourite books of mine (most have been related to play dough). To save money, we bought most ingredients in the bulk section of our local grocer. I bought a package of airtight containers for $1 to store the dough. Play dough should be sealed, and will store in the refrigerator for up to three months.

1) Mud Puddle Flubber

The consistency of this dough is very much how I image the puddle to be. It is wobbly and almost seems bouncy in consistency. Also, if you place it on a cooling rack it will slowly ooze out in a way that looks as if it is dripping, similar to the illustrations in the book.

Right now, I’m on a big Robert Munsch kick. Here are some of the fun things we’ve done with some of his favourite books of mine (most have been related to play dough). To save money, we bought most ingredients in the bulk section of our local grocer. I bought a package of airtight containers for $1 to store the dough. Play dough should be sealed, and will store in the refrigerator for up to three months.

Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1 tbs or more of non-toxic coloured paint of your choice – brown of course is best for mud, but it isn’t as pretty as other colours 🙂
  • sparkles (optional)
  • 1 cup of Elmer’s glue (this equals just under two standard size bottles)
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 1 tsp Borax
Instructions

Mix cold water with glue, paint, and sparkles. Then, set aside. NB colour must be added initially, and with this combination or the colour will not hold. Mix 1/2 cup hot water with 1 tsp Borax. Mix until Borax is fully dissolved, then slowly combine two mixtures. Knead until mixed well. Drain excess water. Store in air tight container.

2) Mud Puddle Play Dough

This recipe is very much a classic play dough one and as such is especially great to mold, manipulate, and shape(the flubber one above isn’t great for that). We used some of our Playmobil 123 toys to recreate the story.

Right now, I’m on a big Robert Munsch kick. Here are some of the fun things we’ve done with some of his favourite books of mine (most have been related to play dough). To save money, we bought most ingredients in the bulk section of our local grocer. I bought a package of airtight containers for $1 to store the dough. Play dough should be sealed, and will store in the refrigerator for up to three months.

Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup of dirt or used coffee grinds (if you use the latter, I recommend adding a bit of vanilla or cinnamon to diminish the coffee scent)
  • 1 tbs or more of non-toxic brown paint
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 tbs cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 2 tsp oil
Instructions

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, mix initially with a wooden spoon until mixture is cool enough to knead. Unlike the recipe above, if desired consistency or colour hasn’t been achieved, it is possible to add more water, dirt, or colour.

Store in the fridge, in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

Murmle Murmle Murmle

Digging in her sandbox one day, Robin happens to find a baby murmling in a hole. The baby pops out of the hole and they set off in search of an adult to take care of the infant. As a little girl, this story seemed quite promising. I hoped that one day, I would come upon my own baby just as easily! 🙂 Fast forward to present day; we successfully have excavated our share of babies from sand. However, the babies were purchased from Michael’s and the sand was sand play dough.

Right now, I’m on a big Robert Munsch kick. Here are some of the fun things we’ve done with some of his favourite books of mine (most have been related to play dough). To save money, we bought most ingredients in the bulk section of our local grocer. I bought a package of airtight containers for $1 to store the dough. Play dough should be sealed, and will store in the refrigerator for up to three months.

Sand Play Dough
This is so much fun to knead, shape, and make mini-sand castles out of. Furthermore, it is so much cleaner than traditional sandcastle building.

Right now, I’m on a big Robert Munsch kick. Here are some of the fun things we’ve done with some of his favourite books of mine (most have been related to play dough). To save money, we bought most ingredients in the bulk section of our local grocer. I bought a package of airtight containers for $1 to store the dough. Play dough should be sealed, and will store in the refrigerator for up to three months.

Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup sand
  • food colouring or paint to achieve desired colour
  • 1 tbsp lemon jello mix (for scent, optional)
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 tbs cream of tartar
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 2 tsp oil
  • 1 cup boiling water
Instructions

Combine all ingredients in a bowl, mix initially with a wooden spoon until mixture is cool enough to knead. If desired consistency or colour hasn’t been achieved, it is possible to add more water, sand, colour, or jello mix.

The Fire Station

Sheila urges Michael into a precarious, adventures trip through the fire station, hidden in a fire truck and ultimately to the scene of a fire. They become so laden with colourful muck that they are unrecognizable to their respective parents, mistaken as prospective playmates, and on account of their filth, are forbidden entry into their own homes!

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To bring this ridiculously fun story to life, we used our fire station from Playmobil. To really experience the multicoloured mess they were in, I made plain play dough, we grabbed washable finger paints, and painted away. NB I recommend using the lids or small portions of existing paints to avoid having your entire paint collection turn into varying shades of brown.

We also did a play dough activity with this one too. To recreate the mess Sheila and Michael find themselves in after riding in the back of a fire engine to a fire, we took plain play dough and painted away with watercolours.

Right now, I’m on a big Robert Munsch kick. Here are some of the fun things we’ve done with some of his favourite books of mine (most have been related to play dough). To save money, we bought most ingredients in the bulk section of our local grocer. I bought a package of airtight containers for $1 to store the dough. Play dough should be sealed, and will store in the refrigerator for up to three months.

Classic Play Dough
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 2 tbs cream of tartar
  • 2 tsp oil
  • 1 cup boiling water

Mix all of the ingredients with a wooden spoon first. Once the dough has cooled enough, knead well.

Here are some other ideas we’ve tried or are going to try!

The Paper Bag PrincessPaperBagPrincess

With our Fisher Price Disney Castle or Playmobil 123 Castle, we have used two people as Ronald and Elizabeth, a stuffed dragon, and a window in the castle to denote Ronald being trapped in the dragon’s lair (my daughter’s favourite part, mine is the last page!!). For anyone who doesn’t have a makeshift lair or castle to act as one, this post on making your own castle.

Mortimer

Mortimer is sent to bed, but his desire to sing about making noise all day wins out over requests to be quiet from his mother, father, SEVENTEEN brothers and sisters, and even two policemen! Of all of Munsch’s books, this is one gets the most replay in our household. Get pots, wooden spoon, warm up those vocal chords and “Clang! Clang! Rattle! Bing! Bang!” away!!!!

For Thomas’ Snowsuit, the sand or mud play dough with coconut flakes instead of sand work well.
For 50 Below, the same recipe for Thomas’ Snowsuit is great or this recipe for midnight play dough from Toddler Tales.

Right now, I’m on a big Robert Munsch kick. Here are some of the fun things we’ve done with some of his favourite books of mine (most have been related to play dough). To save money, we bought most ingredients in the bulk section of our local grocer. I bought a package of airtight containers for $1 to store the dough. Play dough should be sealed, and will store in the refrigerator for up to three months.

Hope your family enjoys bringing these Munsch Classics to life as much as we have!

Have any fun suggestions to bring your favourite children’s books to life?

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7 thoughts on “Mad About Munsch: 5 Extension Activities for Kids’ Stories

  1. You are incredibly creative. I really enjoyed the idea of taking books and recreating the scene. My preschoolers would love this! Thank you so much for inspiring me!

    1. Glad you enjoyed this Melissa. We (I’d venture to say, especially I) had a lot of fun! Thank you so much for your compliment! It means a lot!

    1. Looking forward to your Liebster Award answers!!! Thank you for taking the time to do it. The mud puddle flubber is a lot of fun! Enjoy!

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