Corduroy {Before FI♥AR}

What is brown, cuddly and wears green overalls?

A sweet story about a lost button . . . and friendship.
~Eliana is 3 years 10 months and Malachi is 5 years 9 months~

Our Learning and Memory Making Fun  ~

Day 1:

I sewed this little toy bear (a few weeks ago) using this Tiny Teddy to Sew and then potched some overalls for a toy Corduroy (I was in sewing mode after making the quilted rag letters!).

Then I made a mattress with buttons on it ~ like the one that Corduroy tries to get a button from, and a pillow (white on one side like in the department store and quilted on the other side like the quilt in Lisa's room).

Here we are reading the story and doing the animal classification cards for Corduroy. We looked through the book to find all the animals on the cards ~ and then they ran to find all the other toys from the story. I suggested they turn the Pet Store into a Toy Store (instead of dragging all those toys downstairs!). :-)

Some discussions we had:

Corduroy said, "I think I've always wanted to climb a mountain."
Me: Tell me about some things that you have always wanted to do or places you have wanted to go."

Malachi: "hiking, hunt for buttons, to a place Corduroy went (shopping mall) - that's all."
Eliana: "dance with each other."

Both answers made me smile. . . and I tried to get them to think bigger, but they didn't budge.

"You must be a friend," said Corduroy. " I've always wanted a friend."
Me: Tell me what being a friend means to you.

Malachi: "Playing with each other, racing with each other, exploring with each other."
Eliana: "Hug, kiss." :-)

I asked them if they knew what the Bible says about friendship and we read Proverbs 17:17 ~ and they replied with: "A friend loves at all times."

And since these have been sitting on our shelf (in plain site for a couple weeks) we could not wait another day to do this activity:

We learned how to "collect and organize data" . . . with Gummi Bears (Super Sour are my favorite!).

First, we sorted the bears by placing them on the correct color on the sheet. (I circled the words with the correct color of crayon). 

Then I had them color each bear section the color indicated on the Gummy Bear Sorting Worksheet.

Then they used the information they found out on their sorting worksheet and graphed that data on the Gummy Bear Graph worksheet.

First time using the quilted numbers.
Note: Since she has a desire to write (and will fill up the chalkboard with "letters"), I think the sensory letters will be super helpful. I don't expect her to write, but when she wants to, I will let her. I decided I will use these also with Malachi for his handwriting ~ especially since he will be working on one letter at a time. But, I want them to be able to "play" with them too. Maybe, I can surprise them from time to time and take them all down. 

Next they wrote the correct number of each color of gummy bears. 

Lastly, the part they were waiting for ~ eating them! 

They were so patient to wait so long for them! 

We finished our day by:

Exploring Feelings with Corduroy

Signing Time Volume 4: Family, Feelings & Fun

We watched the video, sang the "Can You Feel It?" song and reviewed the signs for: feelings, grumpy, surprised, happy, sad, scared, sick, and silly. (We picked up a few that we were not using regularly ~ such as surprised and scared ~ which will come in handy for our next "row!").



We explored feelings that Corduroy showed . . . 

“Corduroy watched them sadly as they walked away.”
The sign for "sad" ~ they look so sad, too! 
And connected these feelings to everyday experiences. For example:

Me: When have you felt sad?
Mali: "When someone hurts you."

Feelings Tot Book

Then I had them draw a picture of themselves using a print out from the Feelings Tot Book and one of the feelings they learned about.


"I feel scared."

"I feel loving." {So sweet!}
Day 2:

Learning about Fabric with Corduroy

We explored the visual and sensory experiences of fabric, thanks to the title of the book!

I asked them if they knew what corduroy was and gave them samples of fabric to touch, feel, and play with:

I introduced words like: soft, smooth, rough, ridges, durable, stretchy, and rigid.

After exploring with the samples, I had them try to find the sample's match in the bag:
It was really hard ~ so I had Malachi just try to find the corduroy sample.

Eliana mostly folded fabric samples and played with them with the toy bear.

 Then I had Malachi complete the My Feely Fabric Book.

After reading the story, I asked them to make up a story about their favorite stuffed animal. They each then ran to get their stuffed animal and their story was more about all the things they would do together.

Button Snake

I added another twist to the Button Snake that I first saw @ Along the Way. I followed her links and have seen several variations on this . . . and love this concept!

Teddy Bear Cookie Math & Snack

Teddy Bear Division.

I had Malachi count out 15 cookies and tell me how many each would get if he divided them between 3 people. We worked several more division problems and then he ate them. 

Eliana counted to 20.

Day 3:

Exploring with Buttons

I found this stash of colorful scrapbooking buttons from Hobby Lobby (on sale!). I used some of them for the quilted rag letters I made. They sorted some and then had free play.

Button Sewing

She has come a long way since our first button sewing!

Lap Journal Activities:
Activities from Homeschool Share.

Day 4 and 5:

Paper-Mache Piggy Bank

After Lisa's mom won't let her buy Corduroy because she has spent too much money already that day (been there!), Lisa comes back the next day because she had enough money in her piggy bank to buy him herself.

We talked about saving money and made a homemade piggy bank to start saving!

I used cardboard egg carton cups for the feet and nose.

After letting it dry, painting it, and letting it dry some more, I used pink foam for the ears, a pipe cleaner for the tail and googly eyes. 

Here is it {almost} finished! 

I let it dry one more day before cutting the slot for the money ~ and she is already starting to save. :-)

Only 3 more B4 books left to row and I am hoping to row them before baby is born so we can take a break!

Next row: We're Going on a Bear Hunt.

Delightful Links:

1+1+1=1 (More ideas for ages 1-3)
Preschool Corner & 5K too! (More ideas for ages 4-5)

Corduroy Resources @ HSS


  1. Wow, What a lot of fun learning. I am curious do you plan all those activities out in advance? I need help in this area.

  2. very very fun! i just found this site through a best homeshool blogs list, and i LOVE it! :) Great inspiration and ideas. awesome! :)

  3. Great job, as usual! Still not sure how you pull it all off all the time. Very inspiring! Also good to know there are gelatin free gummy bears out there. I will have to look for them for my kiddos.

  4. What a great week! Love the gummy bear graphing. The piggy bank is adorable!!

  5. You had me at gummy bears. LOL

    Love your twist on the button snake. Very cute! And I'm totally jealous of your sewing talent.

  6. I love everything you did. The button threading is so cute. The animal classificiation is awesome.

    I would love for you to link this to Read.Explore.Learn.

  7. Wow so many wonderful activities from just one book...Awesome!

    I love the piggy bank, that is just too cute!

    popping by via the stART linky!

  8. Chel,

    You did wonderful! I love seeing the pictures of our kids and seeing what they are learning. You certainly are a great homeschool mom.



  9. Love all the details and photos. Looks like you are having lots of fun with B4FIAR.

  10. This post was selected one of my great posts of the week

    I would love for you to link it to Read.Explore.Learn.

  11. Wow! What a lot of activities. Thanks for the great idea!

  12. I just love this book, and it looks like you all do too. I was just looking at your Angus Lost post, since that is next for us.
    I was thinking about the button snake idea... It would be fun to make one to go along with Very Hungry Caterpillar, with circles for the caterpillar. Or for sequencing... thread all the foods he eats in order as we read. I can see ways to try this idea with lots of books. Hmm I think we'll have to try this sometime!

  13. Thank you! I'm off to check out your blog!

  14. See, that is what I love ~ one idea inspiring another! The caterpillar snake would be perfect! Have fun with it and I will be looking forward to seeing all that you do! :-)

  15. I love that little piggy bank! So, so cute!

  16. Awww, I love that piggy bank! I am totally going to put it on my homeschool to-do list, and when my girlies want to get money out, I'm going to make them break it like a pinata--we can always make another.

  17. I just love all of these ideas. I think I will borrow the button snake idea for our January Bear unit. I will link back to your post:) Thanks so much
    Jada Roo Can Do

  18. We had Buzz Lightyear/Toy Story theme...making paper mache helmets and Sophia is doing piggy bank modeled after yours!