Jack and the Leprechaun book and Scavenger Hunt (Toddler Books + Crafts Series #2)
This fun St. Patrick’s Day book can be followed by this adorable (simple!) leprechaun scavenger hunt! It takes only a few minutes and supplies to create!
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When I was in elementary school, I remember doing cute little leprechaun traps and crafts for St. Patrick’s Day. And everyone wore green or you’d get pinched. But for the entire 7 years I taught, we were never once in school for St. Patrick’s Day. Our school spring break always lined up with the local colleges, which meant that it always fell in March, over St. Patrick’s Day.
While St. Patrick’s Day doesn’t have a real significance in the United States, it is a fun little holiday to celebrate with kids. We’ve been reading a few St. Patrick’s Day books at our house, like How to Catch a Leprechaun, Jamie O’Rourke and the Big Potato, and the book that I’m sharing today, Jack and the Leprechaun.
This is the second blog post in my Toddler Book + Craft Series; check out my first post too (Love Monster book + craft)!
Jack and the Leprechaun by Ivan Robeson (Toddler Book and Crafts Series – #2)
I found Jack and the Leprechaun in my stacks of books from teaching 2nd grade. I don’t remember ever reading it to them, but I wish I had! It’s such a cute little book, and Camden and I have already read it a few times. In the book, Jack the mouse is visiting his cousin in Ireland for St. Patrick’s Day. He learns all about the important parts of Irish culture that are celebrated during the holiday – and your toddler will learn right along with him.
His cousin tells him the legend of leprechauns: if you catch a leprechaun, he has to give you his pot of gold. But his uncle tells him that’s just silly, and he doesn’t believe Jack when he says he saw Liam the Leprechaun. But at the very end, Jack gets a surprise from the sneaky leprechaun!
Questions to Ask Your Toddler While Reading Jack and the Leprechaun
Asking questions while you read helps your toddler build their comprehension skills.
For 0-3 year olds:
- What do you see on the cover? Can you point to Jack the mouse?
- A leprechaun is a little man who wears a green outfit. Can you point to Liam the leprechaun?
- Do you think Jack will catch the leprechaun?
- (last page) What did the leprechaun leave for Jack the mouse?
For 2-5 year olds:
(you can start with the 0-3 questions and build from there)
- Before reading: Do a picture walk. Read the title of the book and then look through the pictures and ask your toddler to tell you what she thinks is going on. This gets her mind ready to piece together a story and predict.
- While reading: Ask him questions about each page, like ‘where is the leprechaun?’ or ‘How do you think Jack feels right now?’
- (last page) What did Liam the leprechaun leave for Jack? Why do you think she left cheese instead of gold? Which one would you like more?
Making and Setting Up the Leprechaun’s Gold Scavenger Hunt
To make the leprechaun scavenger hunt to accompany the book, you’ll need:
- plastic gold/green coins
- a pot for the gold (any pail or bucket will do)
- the printable clue cards (click to download and print)
- a small surprise for the end, like chocolate gold coins
- Print and cut out the clue cards.
- Hide one gold coin – in fairly plain sight for 0-2 year olds, and a little more hidden for 3-5 year olds – in each clue spot, except one.
- In the very last spot, put a few gold coins for your toddler to find as his surprise.
- Make sure that the card with the surprise is the last clue card in the pile.
That’s it! You’re ready to play.
Connecting ‘Jack and the Leprechaun’ Book and the Leprechaun Gold Scavenger Hunt
Set up your scavenger hunt before you read the book. That way you’re ready to do the scavenger hunt as soon as you’re finished reading!
After you read the book, tell your toddler that Liam the leprechaun has left gold laying all around your house. He left some clues, and if you can use the clues to find all 8 pieces of gold, he’s also left you a small surprise!
Give your toddler the pot to fill with the leprechaun’s gold, and have him turn over the first card. Ask him what that is a picture of – the couch, for example – and then have him go look at the couch and find a gold coin.
Repeat that with the other 7 cards, until he gets to the last one and discovers the chocolate coins (or whatever small surprise you’ve put there)! Tell him that, if he wants to keep the chocolate coins, he has to leave the pot of plastic coins on the table overnight – or over nap time – for Liam to come back and take the coins home. That way you’re able to put the coins away for the leprechaun to bring them again next year.
More Than One Child Playing?
You’ve got a couple of options:
- Have them work together or trade who finds each gold coin.
- Or buy both green and gold coins and assign each child a different color. Or, if they know their letters, write their first initial on their coins in permanent marker. That way, Breanna would know she’s always looking for the coins with a B on them.
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