Puddles' Craft Corner
Learn about nature while making a nature craft with Puddles!
Much more than detailed craft instructions, these activities include information about the creature being made, supply lists and pictures of every step!
By Cindy Steele (Bio)
Nothing compares to the quality time experienced while completing a nature craft with a child.
Animals in Winter
Welome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner! When winter comes around, humans can keep warm and healthy with a blanket, warm socks, sitting by the fire, running to the grocery store for food, and a steaming cup of hot chocolate, but some wildlife must take more drastic measures to survive. In the wintertime, the temperatures drop, the trees and bushes are stark and bare, and sometimes snow or ice blanket the ground.
What happens to the wild animals in the winter? What is their survival plan? Some people worry about the animals that are out in the cold, but don’t worry. They have a plan! All living beings have what is called instinct. When you are hungry, do you have to be told to eat? When you touch a hot stove, do you nave to think about removing your hand? Instinct tells us (and animals) what to do without even thinking about it! All animals are born with certain instincts that guide their behavior. An animal's instincts are the ability to know without thinking, the capability to automatically know how to behave or respond in certain circumstances. This "knowing" ability occurs naturally or instinctively to an animal and is inherited from birth. That's why do...
Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner! Have you ever thought about how important trees are to all of us? Trees are pretty much amazing in every way! They come in many different varieties, colors, shapes, and sizes. Not only are they beautiful, but did you know that trees are beneficial too? Trees actually keep us healthy! They cleanse the air of harmful pollution, provide us with clean oxygen, and even produce food! Wow!
Trees are an important part of our world. They provide wood for building and pulp for making paper. They provide habitats (homes) for all sorts of insects, birds, and other animals. Many types of fruits and nuts come from trees -- including apples, oranges, walnuts, pears, and peaches. Even the sap of trees is useful as food for insects and for making maple syrup -- yum!
Trees also help to keep our air clean and our ecosystems healthy. We breathe in oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide. Trees breathe in carbon dioxide and breathe out oxygen. We're perfect partners!
Trees do lots for us, our environment and other plants and animals in nature but we don't...
Animals: Master of Disguise!
Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner! Have you ever been exploring in the woods or walking around your backyard and reached down to pick up a leaf and realize that it’s not a leaf at all…it’s alive!? Animals have amazing ways of making themselves almost invisible. This ability is one of their best ways to protect themselves from predators and danger. Let’s learn all the fantastic ways animals truly are the “Masters of Disguise!”
In nature, every advantage increases an animal's chances of...Read More
Creatures of the Night!
Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner! Imagine being wide awake at midnight and going through your normal day. Can you imagine eating lunch at midnight, going to school, playing with your friends, and talking to your family? That might seem odd to some of us, but to nocturnal animals, that's how they live their lives. Nocturnal animals are awake and active at night and then sleep during the day. Some nocturnal animals can be seen during the day, but...Read More
The Magnificent Monarch Migration!
Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner! If you have ever seen monarch butterflies in our area as they pass through North Texas on their yearly migration, then you have witnessed a very special yearly event!
Monarchs are probably the best-known butterflies in North America. Seven U.S. states list the monarch as their official state insect or...
Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner! You've heard of dragonflies and maybe even seen one or two, but what are they exactly? Are they mythical dragons? No! Are they flies? No! So…what are dragonflies?
If you’ve ever been around water in the summer, then there’s a pretty good chance that you’ve seen a dragonfly. These bugs can be big or small, and almost any color you can think of like red, pink, gold, or even purple! Even though they can be lots of different colors, they can have lots of things in common, even if they look very different from one another. For example, dragonflies aren’t really dragons at all! They are super strong and super-fast, but they won’t hurt you...
Are you someone who thinks snakes are really cool, or do they freak you out a bit? Even if you're not the biggest snake fan, you'll be able to appreciate the fascinating types found in our world. In fact, there are over 3,000 different species of snakes, and they live on every single continent except for Antarctica. Snakes are...
A Home for the Birds!
Have you ever seen a bird flying with a twig in its mouth? Sometimes that’s what you see and that’s all you think. A bird is building its nest. But if you think a little deeper…this tiny little bird is building its home. It’s building the bed where it’s babies will be born, where it will hopefully stay safe and where it will live until it doesn’t. Sometimes, a bird flies by carrying a pretty large twig and it catches your eye. The twig is more like a stick and much larger than you think this tiny bird could carry in its beak. This starts you thinking and noticing all the activity going on in your neighborhood as your local...
It’s Bluebonnet Time!
When the Texas wildflowers blanket the fields across the state, Texans have never been able to stay indoors. We’re always thinking of ways to get outside. This is especially true when our beloved bluebonnets begin to paint our fields and roadways this beautiful shade of blue.
Texans have a deep love for bluebonnets, and this is seen every year when families load up in the car and head on road trips across the...Read More
April Showers Bring May Flowers!
Have you ever heard the phrase, “April Showers Bring May Flowers”? Well, it’s true! Spring is the season for rain… lots and lots of rain, and these activities are sure to keep your kiddos engaged, even on the days that it’s too wet to go out and play! April is the perfect month to learn about the water cycle and what makes rain, so let’s learn a little bit about where our water comes from! Pour yourself a glass of water and take a sip. Did you know that the water you’ve just swallowed...Read More
Shades of Green!
Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner. It’s March and spring is about to burst out all around us! Spring officially begins on March 20, but signs of spring start earlier in the month in our area. It seems like everyone, young and old, gets a little bit excited once we start to see grass turning bright green, early spring flowers starting to bloom, and the trees unfurling their vibrant delicate new leaves. Let’s learn a little bit about why plants are green and how this helps...Read More
Cardinals--The Singers in the Trees!
Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner. It’s February! You might be noticing those bright red songbirds sitting in your trees or hanging around your bird feeders. Winter is a good time to notice these beautiful singing birds since they aren’t hidden by the leaves that are usually on the trees. You've heard of cardinals because they are mascots for a lot of sports teams, but maybe you don't know much about them. Are they always red? Where do they live? This lesson...Read More
It’s January! It’s that time when we think about the cold weather, and that means thinking about things like building snowmen, snowball fights, snow angels…in other words – SNOW! Here in the North Texas/Southern Oklahoma area we usually don’t see snow until January or February, if we even see snow at all. We might be making paper snowflakes at school or at home, dreaming of waking up...
Honk, Honk: Geese at the Refuge!
Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner. Honk, Honk! It’s that time of year that we hear the sounds of thousands of migrating geese descending on Hagerman Wildlife Refuge! It’s quite a sight to see! If you visit the refuge this month, you could easily see fields of thousands of geese enjoying their winter meal. The arrival of our winter visitors has been described as geese, “descending like a prairie blizzard.” The sound of their honk, honk, honking is almost... Read More
Welcome back to Puddles’ Craft Corner. Gobble, Gobble! When we think of turkeys we often think about the Fall season and the Thanksgiving Holiday. Who doesn’t remember making fun turkey crafts in school while anticipating our Thanksgiving school break and the smell of turkey cooking in the oven?
But turkeys aren’t just for Thanksgiving. They are an interesting species of birds. Turkeys are one of most popular and...Read More
We’re Going Batty!
Are you afraid of bats? Well, did you know that bats are afraid of you? These amazing mammals have long been misunderstood! In fact, bats actually help the environment and people by eating tons of flying insects that destroy crops and spread diseases. Bats also pollinate night flowers, such as cactus, and help spread seeds to create new fruit trees. They’re mysterious, nocturnal hunters who have...
Let's Make an Owl!
Whooooo doesn’t love owls? They’re mysterious, nocturnal hunters who have captured our imaginations for centuries. Owls are beautiful, mysterious, intriguing, fierce, spooky, and cute. If you’ve ever spied this nighttime animal, you know that the owl has big, curious eyes and makes a unique “hoot” sound. Owls are most famous for their wise appearance, because their intelligent eyes glow and they stare so intensely. You may be surprised to learn that owls are very interesting creatures, and there is a lot to learn about their mysterious ways....
Cicadas: The Humming Sound of Summer!
You just know it’s gonna be a scorcher when you hear the cicadas in the morning. They sound like 90 degrees in August; like sizzling, sticky heat bubbling over and down the tops of the trees around you. They sound like ice cream trucks, lawnmowers, kids playing in the pool, and the clink of ice in a glass of lemonade—cicadas stealthily singing...
The Magical World of Fireflies
Most of us remember running outside at dusk with a jar in hand. Even as children, we knew that summer nights become magical when the fireflies flash their brilliant behinds in a spectacular display of lights. With approximately 2,000 firefly species around the world, these night-loving insects can be found near wet and wooded areas all over...