Saturday, February 24, 2018

Animals: Raccoons - The Masked Nocturnal Mammal



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Raccoons are such interesting animals. Due to their adaptability, one may find them living in a variety of habitats such as marshes, prairies, forests, and even cities. And because they are omnivores, they can find food almost anywhere which helps them live in a variety of locations.

Raccoon Plastic Lid Craft


So I have been saving plastic lids because I just knew that I would find a use for them.  For a while we have been using them as our paint trays but then inspiration hit me.  Raccoons!

Warning: This craft using permanent marker (because they show up the best on the plastic lids).

Raccoon CraftsMy son practiced his raccoon face prior to using the permanent markers on paper with our Magic Stix markers.











Materials 


  • Recycled, clean plastic lids
  • Permanent markers 

Raccoon Crafts

Steps 


1. Gather all of your materials.

2. Draw on the faces of the Raccoons.


The black mask of the raccoon may help prevent glare for this nocturnal animal, who is awake during the nighttime. 

3. Display in your home.  I think we will hang our Raccoon Faces outside when the weather permits.




Books





Raccoon BooksThe Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn with illustrations by Ruth E. Harper and Nancy M. Leak is a lovely book that has become a children’s classic. Through the story of Chester, his worries about school, and his mom’s family secret, children are provided with reassurance and confidence that they are loved – even when separated from their loved ones.

While the book is anthropomorphic in showing young Chester playing in a sand box and swinging on a swing with his skunk friend, this does not take away from the realistic illustrations of the raccoons, frog, birds, and other animals. The animal-themed children’s books that are my favorites tend to be those with realistic illustrations of the animals – even if the story puts them into situations that are not animal-like.

I would recommend this book for anyone who needs reassurance that, no matter how far apart you are from your loved ones, they still love you.

Raccoon Books


Another book in which we enjoyed reading about raccoons was Raccoon at Clear Creek Road (Smithsonian Backyard) by Carolyn Otto.

In this book, children hear the story of a young mother raccoon who has grown hungry and goes in search of food while her babies, or kits, are left in the safety of the tree trunk nest. The mother raccoon goes looking in a nearby home's backyard and trashcans and in the creek.  

Raccoons are known as excellent swimmers.  This is seen in the book as the mother raccoon is fishing for some minnows and gets swept into the strong current of the creek. 

Raccoon booksPersonally, I really liked the way this book focused upon one aspect of a raccoon's life - looking for food - and told the story without making the animals human-like. We will definitely be looking for others in this Smithsonian Series. 




So what do raccoons like to eat?

Since they are omnivores they eat both meat and plant materials including: fruits, seeds, nuts, birds' eggs, vegetables (sometimes stolen from a human's garden), fish, frogs, crayfish, and in urban environments they will look for scraps in garbage cans. 

Looking for a cute Raccoon-themed card game for preschoolers?  Check out my review - Dice, Decks, and Boards: Raccoon Rumpus.



Resources


National Geographic's Raccoon 
PBS' Nature: Raccoon Nation: Raccoon Fact Sheet

 

Looking for some more great books? Take a look at my review of three books by Carole P. Roman: 

I linked up with the following blog(s): 

A Mom's Quest to Teach  


8 comments:

  1. cute craft to do with your littles. the book looks worth reading too.

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    1. I really liked the one from the Smithsonian Series. Good facts and realistic pictures.

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  2. What a fun study! I never thought to use plastic lids to draw on, but that is a fantastic idea.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you. Now I just have to find other uses for the rest of the plastic lids I have saved. If not...recycling bin for them.

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  3. What a fun idea to go with The Kissing Hand! Thanks for linking up with us on the Nature Book Club! :)

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  4. I absolutely LOVe that craft. It is so cute. We have Raccoon Rumpus, and the children really enjoy playing it.
    Thanks for sharing over at Littles Learning Link Up. Your post is one of this week's featured posts!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you. I appreciate being a featured post.

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  5. I love cute but simple ideas like this!

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