Welcome to the ninth installment of the Popping Book Nook! This wonderful FREE book club includes a lot of your favorite bloggers and takes a themed monthly topic and select a book that is appropriate to the theme. Then, on the last Monday of the month, we all present our books and something that ties in with the books and present a fun hands on learning opportunity such as a craft, project, diagram, report, collage, etc. directly related to the book on our blogs through the Poppins Book Nook. These will not be planned out, or mapped, or set items that you need to create, it is simply up to the participant to reach into their bag of tricks and secrets and share something themed related to the book that they selected to inspire those around them to have some book fun of their own! The age range of each project will also be selected by the participant so it can range from Pre-K to 12th, the sky is the limit. Please make sure to follow along with the Poppins Book Nook on Facebook or on Pinterest!
I hope that you and your children have fun learning about what all the other participants are doing with the theme of pets and animals this month. Last month was seasons, so this month’s fantastic new theme is anything related to the pets and animals! When the children and I were selecting our book for this month’s theme we had a lot to choose from. It seems that there are a lot of really good animal and pet themed storybooks. After a few rounds of whittling it down, we came to the conclusion that we needed to select The Puppy Who Went To School by author Gail Herman.
This story follows Wags, a little boy named Ben’s faithful and loyal puppy. The two are inseparable, just like our Daisy and Elizabeth or Beck and Jack-Jack. One day the two are playing and wags doesn’t understand why Ben gets on a school bus without him, so he follows him to see what Ben is doing. I do not want to spoil the storybook for you, but let’s just say the mischief that Wags gets into trying to find his little boy is nothing short of hilarious. There have been days around our homeschool where one of our four furry friends gets into trouble. Nonetheless, The Dog Who Went To School by author Gail Herman is a must read in my eyes. After reading the book a few times with Elizabeth, we had the great idea to try to recreate some of the elements in the book through crafts and baking.
One of the scenes in the storybook takes place in the cafeteria were Wags and some of his new friends are having lunch. Having 4 fur babies in our household (that’s what I call our doggies) means that at meal or snack time we go through dog food, dog treats, dog toys, and so forth like nobody’s business. One of our dogs, Captain Jack Sparrow (thus the reason we call these treats Pirate Puppy Biscuits), is one those loveable being’s that just simply seems to be allergic to so many things. Over the last 2 years of his life we have tried everything from specialty dog foods and treats to organic dog products. Some worked, but the price tags were through the rough for our little Scottie Dog/Jack Russell terrier (Our smallest dog Daisy is not pictured below. Apparently it was a “bad fur day” for her because she wanted nothing to do with my camera).
Being a baker at heart, I started researching with our veterinarian how to make homemade dog food and treat recipes. After tweaking components and making some biscuits that not even the dogs would eat, I have finally found the perfect combination for our furry family member. Plus, all of the other dogs LOVE this recipe too! I also love this recipe because it is so simple to make that the children often end up making batches all by themselves.
Ingredients that you will need:
- 3 cups of flour (I use white flour since our Captain Jack has trouble digesting wheat)
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup canned pumpkin
- 2 ½ tablespoons of peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla
- ½ teaspoon of salt
To make these delectable doggie treats start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees. Next, fold all of the ingredients together in a large bowl using a spoon. This step will take some patience but you will know when the dough is done once it lumps completely together and very little of the flour can be seen. Then, roll out the dough on a flat surface (I use my wooden pastry board) into a long roll. It should look something like this:
You could roll this dough out flat and use cute little cookie cutters (which I did initially way back when) but with a gaggle of pups waiting anxiously for their treats they quite frankly don’t care what shape they are in. Now I just use the good-ole technique of ‘cut and plop’ onto a cookie sheet. Finally, cut the roll into slices. Depending on the size of your dog you can leave them whole or cut them into halves or thirds. Since two out of four of our dogs are small, I cut ours into thirds so that the smaller dogs are able to enjoy these treats as well. Finally, bake for 40 – 60 minutes until they are hard. After allowing the treats to cool get ready to be covered in doggy kisses as you serve them to your furry friend. Tip: I store them in an air tight jar so that the treats last longer.
During Wags adventure to find Ben he interrupts a class learning to paint. In this book themed craft you can have some quick and easy fun with this paw print art for your child!
Here is what you will need to gather for this art class:
- 1 piece of small poster board (cut into any shape you would like and write your doggie’s name on the sign in permanent ink)
- 1 piece of yarn
- Hot glue gun
- Egg carton
- Single hole punch
Start by cutting out 4 individual circles from your egg carton container. Then, use the hot glue gun to adhere the pieces together on the corners and middle to make a doggie paw print shape. Use a single hole punch on each side of the paw and loop a piece of yarn through each hole. I cut the middle of the yarn so that I could make the paw extra snug for Beck and Elizabeth’s hands like this:
Then, have your child add paint to each pad of your doggie paw and allow them to have some paw printing fun to create a custom dog kennel sign for your dog! Remember, the goal to this art project is not precision, but rather to have your child remember to have fun too. Besides, very few dogs actually press down on all four of their paw pads all at once. This art project is all about having fun and spending time with your furry family members.
This is super fun and all of the dogs loved the extra attention the children placed on them when hanging their signs above their kennels. Worth noting: if you have a puppy or a doggie who likes to chew they may love this sign SO MUCH that you find it in pieces when you wake up in the morning. Naughty puppy Jessie 🙂
Thank you for taking the time to see my recipe for Pirate Puppy Biscuits and for taking a look at my Paw Prints Art Projects. Here are some other animal and pet themed storybooks that your child may enjoy:
Please make sure to visit all of the bloggers participating in the November Poppins Book Nook:
Enchanted Homeschooling Mom – 3 Dinosaurs – Monsters Ed – Chestnut Grove Academy – Growing in God’s Grace – Royal Little Lambs – Life with Moore Babies – Teach Beside Me – The Usual Mayhem – Fantastic Fun and Learning – Kathys Cluttered Mind – Toddler Approved – Growing Book by Book – Adventures in Mommydom – Edventures with Kids – Learning & Growing the Piwi way – A Gluten Free Journey – Preschool Powol Packets – To The Moon and Back – Our Craft ~N~ Things – Fresh Farm Adventures – Are We There Yet? – Afterschool for Smarty Pants – Hopkins Homeschool
Clip art by: Melon Headz
Poppins Book Nook Giveaway! Every month the Poppins Book Nook group will be offering readers a chance to win a brand new storybook that ties in with our theme for the month. This month one lucky winner will win a copy of National Geographic Animal Encyclopedia: 2,500 Animals with Photos, Maps, and More! The winner must reside within the United States. Just enter the Rafflecopter below to win: