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I Did See A Mammoth: ideas and activities

Learning type: Classroom activity
Category: Author/book resource
Programme: Bookbug
Genre: Adventure, Animals, Art
Age group: 3-5, Children, Families
Topics: Bookbug

Our friends at PlayTalkRead have come up with some great crafting activities to help you get the most out of I Did See a Mammoth by Alex Willmore, which is in the Bookbug Explorer Bag.

Visit the Bookbug Explorer Bag homepage

How to make pom pom woolly mammoths

You will need:


  1. There are lots of different ways to make pom poms, but our favourite way to do it is to wrap the wool around our fingers. It’s also a great way for an adult and child to make different sized pom poms, using each other’s hands to wrap the wool around. Hold the end of the wool between your fingers and keep wrapping the wool around until it is as thick as you want your pom pom to be. Don’t wrap the wool too tightly! Slip the wool off your fingers, keeping the bundle together.
  2. Use a piece of wool to tie a tight knot in the middle of the bundle. Then use scissors to cut the loops at each side of the pom pom.
  3. Add tusks, a long trunk, and eyes to the woolly mammoths using pipe cleaners, cotton buds, pom poms and googly eyes.

Collage image - step by step of how to create woolly mammoths

How to make woolly mammoth handprints

You will need:


  1. Draw around your hands and make the thumb much longer so that it looks like a long trunk.
  2. Use pencils to make handprints look woolly, drawing on ears and eyes, and use pieces of white paper for the tusks.
  3. Try making a woolly mammoth family using your own family’s hands so that your woolly mammoths are all different sizes.

Step-by-step collage of how to make woolly mammoth handprints

How to make paper cup penguins

You will need:


  1. Colour in one part of the paper cup in with black pens, leaving a white shape at the front.
  2. Use coloured paper to make beaks and feet and add googly eyes, or you could draw yours on.
  3. Penguins have wings called flippers. To make these, glue black paper onto the sides of the cup to add an extra detail.
Step-by-step collage of how to make paper cup penguins

PlayTalkRead is the national programme and roadshow campaign for the Scottish Government’s Parent Club(this link will open in a new window) initiative. It showcases, demonstrates, and delivers key messages to support parents and families with young children to play, talk and read together more from birth. Our team travels around Scotland to provide storytelling and play activity sessions for children to enjoy along with their parents or caregivers.

For more inspiration and ideas, or to find out where our vehicles are travelling to next, you can follow us on X at @playtalkread(this link will open in a new window). PlayTalkRead is a project delivered by Smart Play Network, a charitable organisation supporting play opportunities in Scotland www.smartplaynetwork.org(this link will open in a new window)

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