My kids and I are huge fans of classic stories. The Complete Tales of Beatrix Potter are some of our favorites, and of course the most popular of those is The Tale of Peter Rabbit. To give my kids a chance to act out the story which is GREAT for comprehension, I created a Peter Rabbit small world allowing them some hands-on, interactive book play. They LOVED it!
While Peter Rabbit isn’t technically an Easter story, this time of year is a good time to introduce rabbit stories, since the Easter bunny is so popular right now. Our play time today was inspired by Growing a Jeweled Rose’s Dinosaur Painted Small World Scene.
Peter Rabbit Small World Book Play
To create the scene, I first reread The Tale of Peter Rabbit myself trying to envision how best to create a small world based on the book. We have the 1989 edition of The Complete Tales of Beatrix Potter.
After I reread the story, then I hopped into the bath tub armed with red, blue, and yellow washable tempera paints, a few empty applesauce cups for mixing paints to make various colors, and a couple of paintbrushes.
Before long I had created the rabbits’ sand-bank home under the big fir-tree,
the blackberry bushes,
Mr. McGregor’s garden complete with fence and gate,
Mr. McGregor’s toolshed,
and his pond.
I added some details to the small world like purple foam blackberries on the fruit bushes, orange Play-Doh carrots with green pipe cleaner tops in the garden, a scarecrow with Peter’s blue coat made of lollipop sticks held together with a twist tie and blue felt for the coat,
blue gems and orange Play-Doh goldfish to the pond,
a little flower pot in front of the toolshed made from foam, pipe cleaner, and a pom pom, and a rock border on the garden and rabbits’ home. I also added a cat and a rabbit figurine from our toy collection.
I am NOT an artist by any means, but I think the small world scene turned out pretty cute!
The entire set-up took me about an hour to think up and create, but to simply copy the idea would probably only take about 15-20 minutes, and you could involve your kids in the crafting of the scene for even more imaginative fun. I used only materials we already had on hand, so this set up didn’t cost anything out of pocket. I also saved money by only using the 3 primary colors of paint and mixing my own color combinations!
While the paint was drying a bit, the kids got their Peter Rabbit and Cottontail stuffed animals from last year’s Easter basket, and we snuggled up to read The Tale of Peter Rabbit together.
We talked about how naughty little Peter Rabbit had been and how he had gotten into danger because he didn’t listen to his mother’s instructions. We made some real life comparisons.
Then I told them they could play in Peter Rabbit’s World!
While the paint was still a little damp, I only let them use plastic figurines in the tub, but once it was mostly dry, I let them use their stuffed animals in the small world scene, too.
They had fun acting out the story as well as making up their own additions!
We are leaving the Peter Rabbit scene up all day for the kids to climb in and out of when they want to play. Tonight, they’ll have the fun of getting to wash it all away and once the tub is clean again, we’ll end the day with a nice bath!
Be sure to HOP over to Bath Activities for Kids to see a fun Easter Bunny Activities Bath and check back all week for more Easter bath fun!
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