‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ inspired Fruit Printing

After finding caterpillars in the garden last week followed by reading ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ by Eric Carle several times, I decided we’d do some fruit printing this morning. I hedged my bets with the weather and set it up outside. Any excuse to get out in the new garden!

For this activity you will need:

  • Paper – we used a large roll
  • Paints – we used poster paints and mixed a couple of our own colours
  • Fruits – To follow TVHC – Apple, pear, plum (I didn’t have a plum so cheated and used a new potato :)), strawberry and an orange
  • Plates for the paints
  • A bucket of soapy warm water at the ready
  • A fluffy towel


Before we got started, we re-read the book. We have two different copies, the original board book and a finger puppet version. The finger puppet one is simplified and just gives the number, an adjective and the fruit. When Squidge retells the story herself, she merges the two together. Reading is a great way of building vocabulary.

I half expected Squidge to just dive in and go crazy, but she was keen to count how many of each fruit she needed. I didn’t ask her to put them in a row, she just did. Reading the story before we started certainly influenced both of these. I used the finger puppet book to support her throughout as the pictures are much larger and were easier for her to count as she was printing. You can see her double checking how many she needed in one of the photos.

For each fruit she counted aloud – an early years practitioners dream observation! Luckily as her Mummy I don’t have to fill in any paperwork, I can just enjoy the fun. Squidge printed all of the fruits in turn. Besides the counting, she was very quiet and focussed on the task.

After Squidge had finished counting all the fruits, I said she could print as many as she wanted. She continued with a few more oranges and then, as with any good painting activity if you ask me, she decided to really dive in…

I love her face in this series of pictures – you’d think she’d never printed with her hands before! We’re slowly building a hand and footprint alphabet so we have done it a lot. Clearly it still fascinates her every time though.

She then got her feet in the paints. One foot first, then both. She worked her way along the paper carefully, making sure she pressed her foot all the way from back to front, ensuring a clear print. Squidge was eager to wash her hands and feet between each set of prints, so having the warm soapy water and towel to hand was great. I’d definitely recommend this if you decide to get a messy activity out. You don’t want to have to leave it unattended, especially with a smaller sibling in tow!

I always encourage both girls to get involved in the clean up – they had all the fun making the mess after all. They are usually happy to do so, especially if it’s washing up. They don’t always get the clean up finished, but I’m happy that they show willing and want to help.


Here’s our finished Hungry Caterpillar inspired print plus hands and feet. We hope you like it! 🙂


If you enjoyed this post you’ll love our Marble Painting activity!



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I’ve linked this blogpost with #TwinklyTuesday, #BloggerClubUK and #fortheloveofBlog

MummascribblesMy Random Musings

The Pramshed

  • Lisa (June 28, 2016)

    Such a great idea!! Id never have thought about doing something like this!!
    Added to my ideas list for the holidays 🙂

    • Cat (June 28, 2016)

      I have done this activity in the past with the children at school. It’s always proved popular! So simple and you can have the other halves of the fruit for snack 🙂

  • Anna (June 29, 2016)

    This looks so much fun! I really want the rain to stop so we can get outside and have a go at this!

    • Cat (June 29, 2016)

      We just sneaked it in before the heavens opened! It is a lot of fun x

  • New Mummy Blog (July 2, 2016)

    It looks great and definitely lots of fun! It didn’t even look too messy!!! #bloggerclubuk

    • Cat (July 2, 2016)

      I was surprised myself at how neat it was. Please note huge towel and bowl of soapy water in preparation for head to toe paint covered small people! They must’ve sensed my want to blog it. Xx

  • Ali Duke (July 2, 2016)

    What a lovely idea. Looks like a lot of fun. My daughter is nearly 11, but I know she would love this. I love the way she set out all the fruits first x

    • Cat (July 2, 2016)

      Thank you. You’re right even older kids love this type of activity. When I worked in school and the older children had to pass through or bring a message, you could see their eyes light up at certain areas in the room. They could never walk past the sensory table (right by the classroom door) without putting at least a finger in. Cheered and saddened me all at the same time. There’s no time for ‘fun’ with testing to be done! xx

  • Emma Plus Three (July 2, 2016)

    This looks like loads of fun! I’m not sure I’m brave enough for the mess though, haha x #fortheloveofBLOG

    • Cat (July 2, 2016)

      I usually do this kind of thing outside or in my kitchen – where everything is wipe clean! If you have the clean up stuff at the ready it’s really not so bad 🙂 xxx

  • Lisa (mummascribbles) (July 3, 2016)

    This is such a brilliant idea. And the soapy water even more so! Love the finished result. I might have to try this!! Thanks for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

    • Cat (July 3, 2016)

      Thank you and thanks for having me! I’m enjoying reading so many other blogs. Inspiration and ideas galore 🙂

  • Kate (July 3, 2016)

    This is brilliant. We will definitely be trying it out in the holidays. Thank you for sharing it 🙂 #fortheloveofBLOG

    • Cat (July 3, 2016)

      Then I shall consider this blogpost a success! Thank you 🙂 xx

  • Mudpie Fridays (July 5, 2016)

    Oh I simply love this! Monkey use to love the hungry caterpillar when he was younger. I am so going to be doing this in the Summer. Will be pinning. Thank you for joining us at #bloggeeclubuk hope to see you again this week x

    • Cat (July 5, 2016)

      Thanks for dropping in! We’ve just made a pebble caterpillar for the fairy garden too… just as messy and just as much fun! There’s a picture on my instagram 🙂 I’ll definitely be back again! xx

  • A MUM TRACK MIND (July 7, 2016)

    One of my favourite children’s stories and this is just the cutest activity! Cant wait for Sophie to be old enough to do all these things with! Thanks for sharing on #fortheloveofBLOG

    • Cat (July 7, 2016)

      Get the printing out when she’s tiny and then you’ll have a whole collection as she grows 🙂 We’ve started a print alphabet (I think we’ve only got 8) but I think it’ll be nice to have their various sizes and ages as a part of it xx


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