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Peanut Butter Playdough

Mix together equal amounts of peanut butter and dry nonfat milk to make playdough (add more peanut butter or dry milk as needed). Wash cookie cutters and any other playing utensils you wish to use and set them out on a clean tabletop. Then invite the children to touch, smell, taste and create with this different kind of playdough.

Variation: For a sweeter taste, mix honey with the peanut butter before adding the dry milk.

Peanut Shell Collages

Use this activity at the end of your peanut unit to recycle the peanut shells saved from other acivities. Cut peanut shapes out of heavy brown grocery sacks or brown construction paper. Pour glue into shallow containers and set out bowls of peanut shells. Then let the children dip the shells into the glue (rounded sides up) and place them all over their peanut shapes to create collages.

The Peanut Plant

Read the following poem with the children. Encourage them to act out the growth of a peanut plant as described. At the end of the poem, ask them to name things they like to eat that are made from the plump and round peanuts.

Up through the ground the peanut plant grows.

(Crouch down near floor.)

Peeking out its little green nose.

(Slowly start to rise.)

Reaching, reaching for the sky,

(Raise arms above head.)

Growing, growing, growing high.

(Stand on tiptoe.)

Then the flower starts to grow,

(Make a circle with arms.)

But it doesn't grow up! Not it! Oh, no!

(Shake head.)

Down it goes, sending shoots underground,

(Bend over and touch floor with fingers.)

And there grow the peanuts, plump and round.

(Kneel and pretend to dig up peanuts.)

Peanut Number Game

Set out five containers numbered from 1 to 5 and a basket containing fifteen peanuts. Then let the children take turns placing the appropriate number of peanuts into each container.

How Peanuts Grow

Discuss with the children how peanuts grow. Explain that although we think of peanuts as nuts, they really belong to the same family as peas and beans. When a raw peanut is planted, a sprout forms between the two halves of the nut and grows into a flowering plant. Then when the flowers fade, they send shoots down under the ground where the peanut pods form on the ends of the shoots. If possible, show a picture of a peanut plant from an illustrated dictionary or encyclopedia.

Peanut Drop

To develop color discrimination and eye-hand coordination skills, mark unshelled peanuts with different colored felt-tip markers. Tape matching colors of construction paper to wide-mouthed containers placed on the floor. Then let the children take turns standing beside the containers and dropping matching colored peanuts into each one.

Variation: Number the containers and let the children take turns dropping in the corresponding numbers of peanuts while everyone counts.

Feed the Elephant

Draw an elephant face on the side of a large cardboard box and cut out a hole for its mouth with a sharp knife. Give each of the children several unshelled peanuts and let them take turns "feeding the elephant" by tossing the peanuts into the elephant's mouth. Add more peanuts to the box at the end of the game and let each child reach in and grab a handful. Let the children keep and eat as many peanuts as they can hold.

Found a Peanut

Hide peanuts in the room in advance (enough so that every child will be successful in finding several) and let the children have a "peanut hunt" while singing the following song.

Sung to : "Oh, My Darling Clementine"

Found a peanut, found a peanut,

Found a peanut just now.

Just now I found a peanut,

Found a peanut just now.

A Peanut Sat on a Railroad Track

Sung to : "Pop! Goes the Weasel"

A peanut sat on a railroad track,

Its heart was all a-flutter.

A train came chugging down the track--

Whoops! Peanut butter!

Peanut Butter

Sung to : "Frere Jacques"

Peanut butter, peanut butter,

Good for you, fun to chew.

Put peanuts in a blender,

Add a little oil.

Let it whirl, let it whirl.

Peanut butter, peanut butter,

Now it's done; oh, what fun!

Spread it on a sandwich,

Spread it on a cracker.

Good for you, fun to chew.

Peanut Butter

Let the children help shell a package of unsalted, roasted peanuts. Then have them grind the peanuts in a food grinder. Gradually add peanut or vegetable oil until the mixture is the desired consistency. Add salt to taste. Serve on crackers, apple slices, or celery sticks. Or, for a special treat, spread on slices of whole-wheat toast and top with warm applesauce.

Nutty Bananas

Finely chop some peanuts. Give each child a plate with a small amount of chopped peanuts, a spoonful of yogurt and one half of an unpeeled banana on it. Have the children gradually peel their bananas and dip them first into the yogurt and then into the nuts before taking each bite.

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Visitors since July 4, 1998