Random ramblings and TV-inspired activities

Monday, 26 September 2011

64 Zoo Lane: Crocodile

64 Zoo Lane is, in some ways, a poor man's Tinga Tinga Tales. But it is on during Cbeebies Bedtime Hour and if Baby Boy's struggling to get to sleep then it can stretch a tired toddler for an extra ten minutes before bath.

It is hardly cutting edge animation, and the stories are so-so, but the idea of a girl who lives next door to a zoo being told bedtime stories by the animals is quite cute. I take exception to the theme tune however, which sings that "some are slimy" while showing wriggling snakes. Annoys me every time. Everyone knows snakes aren't slimy, don't they? Or am I being a pedant?

(Flash back to our most recent zoo visit: another mother pointing at a gorilla, saying "look at the funny monkey" to her toddler. My daughter points at the animal and asks me what it is, I tell her it's a gorilla. Which it is. Other mother shoots daggers at me and mutters something like "monkey, gorilla, whatever". It's none of my business what she tells her kids it's called, does that not cut both ways? It's not like I made a point of mentioning that a gorilla's an ape, not a monkey. That, I feel, would have been pedantry.)

Anyway, 64 Zoo Lane's crocodiles are pretty basic and easy to mock up. (Mock croc, geddit?) I don't know why my daughter decided an egg-box should become a croc, but she did, and it did.


1 long thin box (I used a breadsticks box)
Half an egg-box (the bumpy half)
1 piece of card
Plain paper
2 googly eyes if you have them, a bit more paper if you don't.

Cover the long thin box in plain paper.
Cut jaws out of one end of the box.
Stick the egg-box half onto the top of the box (I used glue and masking tape to secure it).
Cut 4 feet and 1 tail out of the piece of card and attach to bottom and back of box respectively. I folded the 'fat end' of the tail over to make a tab for the purposes of sticking.
Croc at this point looked like so:

Next, paint crocodile in colours of toddlers choice. Ours was green, yellow, red and blue. And sludge where they all mingled.
When crocodile is dry, stick on two googly eyes, or make two paper eyes.
Cut pointy teeth out of paper, and stick to jaw end to give a toothy effect.

You can "feed" the crocodile bits and pieces by pushing it through the teeth, or make fish shapes from the spare card if you like.

It didn't take that long to make: as projects go, it was pretty snappy! (Ok, I'll stop now...)


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