Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Good Night, Gorilla

Our activities this week were inspired by the book, Goodnight, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann. 

Gathering: Zoo Animal Toys and Books

The children played with the Fisher Price Zoo Animals and Zoo Train.  We also read zoo books with mommies and played with zoo animal masks and puppets.

Circle Time:


We read Good Night Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann.  I love this story.  There are very few words, but all that needs to be said is conveyed through the pictures.  As a zookeeper closes his zoo for the night, he says "goodnight" to each animal.  A gorilla sneaks behind him and unlocks each cage with the zookeeper's OWN KEYS!  They all silently parade behind him into his house and into his bed!  When the animals are discovered in the bedroom, he brings them all back to the zoo.  All, that is, except the gorilla.  A cute mouse is on each page pulling a banana on a string.  The little ones had a fun time searching for him every time I turned the page.  They giggled as each animal escaped. 

We sang Raffi’s “Going to the Zoo”


The Animals at the Zoo Tune: The Wheels on the Bus
(sing with the animals in the book)

The snake at the zoo goes Hiss Hiss Hiss Hiss Hiss Hiss
The Snake at the zoo goes Hiss Hiss Hiss
All day long
The lion at the zoo goes Roar Roar Roar Roar Roar Roar
The lion at the zoo goes Roar Roar Roar
All day long (Add other animals)

Art: Gorilla Paper Plate Art

We found this adorable gorilla craft at Creativity Takes Flight. 

Snack: Bananas and Animal Crackers


We enjoyed bananas (In honor of the little banana being pulled by a mouse on each page) and animal crackers.

Activities: Zoo Cages and Good Night Gorilla Games

1-)Zoo Cages Guessing Game:

  We made 3 zoo cages out of baskets.   The creative mommy who made these, added the most adorable signs on the cages. 

 We had one child leave the room with Mom.  While they were gone,  we hide a toy zoo animal in one of the cages.   When they came back, they opened each of  the three cages until they found the hidden animal.  

2-) Goodnight Gorilla:

We had  the children pretend to be each of the 7 animals, one at a time.   We said "Goodnight, Hyena". Then they pretended to go to sleep.  

One child pretended to be the zookeeper and would rattle a set of keys and say “Wake up!”   

Then of course, the kids would all jump up.  

Why is it that pretending to sleep is such a fun game for 2 and 3 year olds?  It is one of their favorites!



Love Goodnight Gorilla! So many cute ideas.


We love this book and the activities you have to go with it are so much fun. I especially like the zoo animal cages guessing game!


Fun activities for a great book! Have you noticed why there is a string on the mouse's banana? The balloon that floats free is drawn on every scene in the book. It's wonderful!

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