When a child is interested in an animal, it’s an invitation for great learning.
In our case, Miss Possum was really interested in wombats so it was a perfect opportunity to learn about them at home and follow it up later with a trip to the zoo. Here’s how you can extend on your child’s interest in wombats.
Read wombat books
Miss Possum’s first interest in wombats came from books so it was only natural to discover other wombat books.
We borrowed some books from the library and displayed the books around the playroom, encouraging Miss Possum and her twin sisters to read them on their own as well. Don’t forget to borrow some non-fiction books too!
- Diary of a Wombat by Jackie French
- Found you, Wombat by Vicki Churchill
- Wombat Down Below! by Jill Morris
- The Wombat Who Talked To The Stars by Jill Morris
- The Wombat: Common Wombats in Australia by Barbara Triggs
Understanding that wombats are marsupials
Learning about how a wombat has babies, can be complex. Wombats are marsupials, and that means that they give birth to under-developed babies (called joeys) and the young must climb into the wombat’s pouch and drink plenty of milk where it becomes fully developed.
If your child doesn’t know much about different types of animals yet, I’d suggest you learn this first. Here’s a great activity that gets your children learning about basic classification in a fun and interactive way.
Once they know these concepts you can teach them about different types of mammals, like marsupials. Teach them through books, watching videos or just chatting about it together. Marsupials are truly fascinating.
Free Wombat Mask
I think Miss Possum is getting used to me creating things for her on the computer because she practically demanded a wombat mask.
I made her the mask, not just because she demanded it but because I thought you might like one too.
We used our mask to form part of our play time.
I’d highly recommend pairing your wombats masks with some wombat play. We built wombat burrows in our playroom, and it was so much fun.
Pretending to be wombats, we used chairs, blankets and sheets to build (dig) our wombat burrows. We even added roots coming down from the walls, so that we knew the burrows were sturdy and safe.
We played a predator and prey activity too; Miss Possum was the wombat and I was the dingo. Miss Possum would pretend to graze on grass, because that’s what wombats do, and I would make a howling sound and run toward her. She would run into the burrow dig and protect herself with her bottom.
Yes, that apparently how a wombat protects themselves, with their bottom!
I think pretending to a wombat was the best fun of all.
Next time your child shows interest in a particular animal, why don’t you jump on it and build learning it all these ways. You won’t regret it!