Book review, Literacy, Reading, Tips

The Very Hungry Caterpillar turns 50

March 19, 2019

Cover of Penguin’s golden anniversary edition of Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar!

2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. The story has been loved and shared for generations. To celebrate, we’ve listed some ideas for sharing it with your little reader.

  • Observe together 

Look at the front cover together, read the title and talk about what the book could be about. Ask your little one why the caterpillar might be hungry and what it might like to eat. Talk about what you and your child like to eat.

  • Use the pictures

This book can be shared without even reading the words. You and your child can look at the pictures on each page and make up your own words. If this is a book you have shared many times your little one will love “reading” the story themselves by remembering the words they’ve heard over and over.

  • Make connections

When reading the pages with each of the food items the caterpillar eats, talk about whether they are foods your family eats. Which ones are favourites or are disliked? Are there any your little one hasn’t tried or don’t know about? You could explain some of the more unusual ones by linking them to familiar things. For example, Swiss cheese is like the cheese we eat but it has holes in it! You could talk about what you are going to eat for lunch or dinner. Is it the same or different to the caterpillar?

  • After the story

Books don’t have to end when the words stop. Flick back through the pages together to revisit all the different stages the caterpillar went through to become a butterfly.

Read this book over and over again with your little one. The more times you read it, the more involved they will become.

  • Be scientists together

When we explore, look at, describe, talk about and record living things we are being scientists. Why not look for caterpillars in your backyard, at the park or in the bush. What other creepy crawlies can you discover? Draw pictures of the creatures you discover.