Find Somebunny

find some bunnyEvery magic show needs a rabbit…unless that rabbit pulls an unplanned disappearing act! Luckily, some glittering stars will help you find your friend!

We read The Magic Rabbit by Annette LeBlanc Cate (Candlewick, 2013). Ray is a street magician, and Bunny is his faithful assistant and best friend. The two friends do everything together. One day, however, Ray’s magic act is interrupted by a passing juggler. In the chaos, Bunny is chased by a dog and lost. Bunny searches and searches, but he just can’t seem to find his friend. As darkness falls, Bunny begins to despair. Enticed by a bag of popcorn, he suddenly notices a glittery star on the ground. It’s one of Ray’s stars! One by one, bunny follows the stars until he sees a very familiar figure on the subway platform. Reunited, the two friends walk home together.

You’ll need:

  • 1 large oatmeal container
  • White construction paper
  • A square of white poster board for feet (approximately 6.5″ x 6.5″)
  • 2 rectangles of white poster board for paws (approximately 1.75″ x 3.25″)
  • 6 twistez wire (or pipe cleaners) for whiskers (approximately 3.5″ long)
  • 2 wiggle eyes
  • 2 white cotton balls
  • 1 medium pom-pom for nose (mine was 1″)
  • 2 white construction paper rectangles for the ears (approximately 2″ x 6.75″)
  • A rectangle of construction paper for hair tuft (approximately 2.5″ x 3″)
  • A strip of felt, any color (approximately 1.25″ x 4.25″)
  • 1 large pom-pom for tail (mine was 1.5″)
  • A magic star template, printed on 8.5″ x 11″ card stock
  • A black plastic top hat (optional)
  • Scissors, tape, stapler for construction
  • Markers for decorating
  • Hot glue

This story time project involves making a rabbit, decorating some magical stars, and then finding your glittery stars in our gallery. We’ll start with…the magic rabbit.

finished rabbitWrap the oatmeal container with white construction paper. Cut feet from the square of white poster board. I recommend rounded feet with like the ones below (I used marker to add some “toe lines”).

feetHot glue the feet to the bottom of the container. To make whiskers, curl one end of each twistez wire (or pipe cleaner), and tape them to the front of the container like so:

face step 1Then hot glue two white cotton balls over top of the whiskers. Hot glue a small pom-pom on top of the cotton balls, and top everything with two hot glued wiggle eyes.

face step 2Next, cut paw shapes out of the small rectangles of white poster board, and draw little toe lines on them. Tab the ends and hot glue (or tape) them to the front of the rabbit.

paw stepsFor ears, round the ends of the 2 rectangles of white construction paper, use markers to add some color, then staple at the bottom. Hot glue (or tape) them to the rabbit.

ear stepsFor a snazzy bow tie, knot a strip of felt and round the ends with scissors if needed. Hot glue to the rabbit.

bowtieFinish everything off with a jumbo pom-pom tail, also adhered with hot glue. I had some extra black plastic top hats lefts over from this project and this project, and they worked really well as rabbit carriers. Set your rabbit aside for the moment.

Next up, magic stars! Each kid received 4 blank magic stars, printed from the template. Then I brought out the Bling Bin and encouraged kids to use markers and the Bling Bin materials to decorate the stars. As you can see, the results were VERY magical.

lots of magic starsWe collected all the stars, sent the kids off to a secluded part of our gallery, and asked them to cover their eyes while we hid all the stars in the gallery. Apparently, those plastic top hats made for some pretty good blindfolds!

waiting in treeWhen the stars were hidden, kids and rabbits went star-seeking in the gallery! Then the rabbits, hats, and stars went home for more games of magical hide and seek.

Perhaps you’re ready to try a magic show of your own? Look no further than this post!

Hip Hat

hip hatsThe task…to make a hat that you NEVER want to take off. The resulting hats? Totally hip!

We read What a Hat! by Holly Keller (Greenwillow Books, 2003). Cousin Newton is visiting Henry and Wizzie. Newton doesn’t talk much, and when he does, he just says “No hat.” Newton simply refuses to take off his fuzzy knitted hat. He wears it at the dinner table, in the bathtub, and when he goes to bed! Henry tries to make Newton remove his hat, but it’s not happening. But when Wizzie falls prey to a local bully, Newton gives her his precious hat in order to make her feel better. And, like magic, it works!

You’ll need:

This is an incredibly simple story time project. Basically, give each kid a hat…

top hatThen decorate!

side of decorated top hatIf you want a big, floppy hat brim (and lots of kids did), begin by rounding the ends of a 14″ x 22″ piece of poster board.

hat steps 1 and 2Flip the hat upside down and place it in the center of the poster board. Use a pencil to trace the top of the hat onto the poster board.

hat step 3 Cut the traced circle out. Turn the hat right side up, and slide the poster board brim onto the hat. You might have to enlarge the circle a little to get it to slide all the way down to the base of the hat.

hat step 5Use a little hot glue to secure the poster board brim to the plastic hat, then decorate!

hat with wide brimQuick tip – if the hat is too big for your head, stuff the interior with extra tissue paper.

Birds on the Brain

singing hatBecause a bird hat is a beautiful thing.

We read The Singing Hat by Tohby Riddle (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2000). Colin Jenkins is an ordinary man, but when he falls asleep under a tree, he awakens to find a bird has built a nest on his head…and it’s not leaving. Colin’s life changes dramatically as he discovers that people divide into two groups: those whose don’t mind his singing hat, and those who do! After many trials and tribulations, Colin is surprised to learn that the bird on his head is one of the rarest in the world – and at the the moment, the bird (and her new baby) fly away. To remember the beautiful bird and how it changed his life, Colin puts the empty nest by the open window of his apartment, just in case.

You’ll need:

  • 1 box (I used a 4″ x 4″ x 4″ box, but a small tissue box would work as well)
  • 1 plastic fedora
  • 1 strip of poster board for a hat band (approximately 22″ x 2.5″)
  • Construction paper for bird’s body and crest
  • 1 cone water cup
  • 2 black dot stickers
  • Poster board for the wings
  • A selection of small feathers
  • A box cutter
  • 1 goose quill
  • 2 duck quills
  • 2 strips of orange poster board for the legs (mine were 1″ X 6.5″)
  • Markers and crayons for decorating
  • Scissors, tape, glue stick for construction
  • Hot glue

I bought my plastic fedoras at Oriental Trading Company, and they arrived with thin paper hatbands on them. So we started the project by tearing off the hatbands and creating our own with poster board and markers.

Now for the bird! Cover the box with construction paper EXCEPT for the very bottom where the bird sits on the hat. Use the leftover construction paper to cut a fringe and tape it to the top of the bird’s head like a crest.

crestUse crayons to color the cone water cup (markers tend to smear) and hot glue it onto the bird’s face. Add two dot stickers for eyes. For the wings, cut two poster board shapes (we found pointy wings looked better than rounded)…

wingsThen glue the small feathers to the wings (and tape one in the crest as well). When the wings are fully feathered, hot glue them to the bird. To create a tail, use the box cutter to cut a trio of holes in the back of the bird where the tail goes:

tail feather holesThen insert the goose quill in the top hole, and the duck quills in the 2 lower holes.

tail featherIt’s time to hot glue the bird on the hat! Reach inside the hat and pop the crown upwards. Then, slather hot glue all over the top of the hat  (but be careful where you put your hands, the glue heats up the plastic fast). Quickly jam the bottom of the bird box on top of the popped up, glue-drenched plastic. Firmly push the plastic onto the bottom of the bird box to insure full contact with the glue.

The last touch is to fold and cut the orange poster board strips to resemble bird feet, and then tape (or hot glue) them to the bottom of the bird box and the hat. The feet really make the hat!

bird legsFor a project that uses one of these plastic fedoras but has a nautical theme (and is also modeled by the lovely Miss Theresa), click here!