FS2, Year 1, Year 2 Home learning activites

In KS1, we LOVE reading lots of books! In fact, Julia Donaldson is one of our favourite authors. For our tasks over the Summer holidays, we are going to be using 'The Snail and the Whale'. If you have the book, please read and enjoy it. If you do not have the book, do not worry.....

Enjoy the video and have a go at some of the tasks below....

Choose whichever tasks most appeal to you and most importantly, enjoy the story and HAVE FUN!

In the beginning....

We meet the snail 'with an itchy foot'. She is desperate to explore. She says, 'The sea is deep and the world is wide'.

Activity options..... (always check with a grown up before you start exploring!) You could start a 'Snail Activity Log' and include some of these things...

  • We know that snails don't travel very fast on their own...can you go outside and see if you can see any snails? They could be in your garden or you might see them whilst out walking.
  • Can you take pictures of the different snails that you see? How many can you see? What makes them different? Are there big ones? Small ones? Think about all the different places you have found the snails. Why do they like to live there?
  • What about their shells? Can you spot the beautiful patterns? What other parts can you spot on a snail?
  • Can you keep checking on your snail(s)? Have they moved? What things do they like to eat? Research this carefully before feeding!

Make a Snailery!

You will need:

  • a 5l bottle
  • some soil and some stones
  • 2 bottle caps
  • a spray water bottle
  • chalk or limestone (for calcium).


  1. Cut the container in half creating a bottom and a lid. Put air holes into the lid.
  2. Put holes in the bottom for draining.
  3. Fill the bottom container with soil and put stones on top for the snails to hide under.
  4. Add some leaves on top.
  5. Fill one bottle cap with water for the snails to drink from and place it on top.
  6. Put in some pieces of chalk or other rick calcium material as snails need calcium to keep their shells strong.
  7. Each day add new food into the bottle cap. Try foods such as oats, banana, apple, strawberry, raspberry, cabbage.
  8. Keep your snailery moist each day by spraying it with water. This will wake the snails up and keep them active!

At the seashore....

Activity Options:

  • Shell art. Have you got any shells that you have collected? Can you paint them or print with them? What patterns can you see?
  • Draw a seaside picture. What can you see if you go to the seaside? Beach huts, kites, rock pools?
  • Pretty pebbles. Can you find any smooth pebbles and paint a picture? You could paint the snail or the whale!
  • Seaside Poster. Make a poster all about the seaside. What things can you see? What can you hear? Or smell? What can you taste and touch?
  • What habitats are at the beach? What things live there? Think about starfish, crabs, limpets, seaweed.
  • If you are able to travel, visit the National Trails website to see what coastal trails are available.

Make your own sand! Follow these instructions to make your own sand:

What you will need:

  • 8 cups of flour
  • 1 cup of oil (any but baby oil is best)

What to do:

  1. Mix the flour and oil together until combined.
  2. Enjoy playing with your sand.

Let's go deep into the ocean......


The humpback whale takes the snail on an adventure. She sees many things she has never seen before...

Activity Options...

  • Research what things (animals and plants) live in the ocean.
  • Make your own coral reef using playdough, pipe cleaners and beads. You could even use any of your own plastic sea creatures or print some off. If you wanted to make it bigger, put it in a shoebox and keep building until you are happy with it!
  • Make your own ocean in a bottle. Use a clean, empty bottle, blue food colouring, water and oil. Fill 1/3 of your bottle with water. Add the food colouring and give it a good shake. Now fill up with oil, tip upside down and watch the magic happen as your ocean appears!
  • Use the link below to see instructions on how to make a toilet roll squid!


The whale swims too close to shore and becomes beached. Unfortunately, this can happen because too many people are careless with their rubbish. This can end up on our seas and oceans and can cause problems for the marine life. This link to National Geographic will give you more information...

Find some tips here on how to reduce plastic pollution....

Have a look at the activities on the next page to see how creative with plastic you can be!

Plastic Activities....

Always check with a grown up before doing these activities. If you are touching waste, be careful and ask your grown up to make sure you are protected and safe.

  • Local litter picking. Can you help to clean up your local area? Use a litter picker and a bag and ensure you don't touch anything with your hands!
  • Think about what materials can be recycled. Have you got a recycling bin at home? Can you sort them into different materials? Make sure your recycling is clean before using them to make anything out of!
  • Make a plastic sculpture. Gather your recycled materials and make a sculpture. It could even be a sea creature!
  • Make a musical instrument using plastic!
  • Can you make a boat out of plastic waste? Will it float?
  • Can you make an item of clothing out of your recycling?
  • Make a poster about how we can stop plastic pollution and harming animals in the ocean.

The Snail and the Whale

We hope you have enjoyed taking part in lots of snail and whale related activities!

If you would like to complete anymore, there are a range of activities on the Pan Macmillan website.

We would LOVE to see any photographs you have taken of your activities. You could share them on Twitter with us @primaryBG.

Have fun!

Be creative!


Created with images by Anastasia Taioglou - "Sunrise in Greece" • Jeremy Bishop - "untitled image" • Martin Vysoudil - "the snail in my garden" • Pascal Mauerhofer - "When the humpback was hunting for food, he was talking to us. We could hear him perfectly, when we stopped our motor of the boat. This picture was taken in the big bay near Husavik in Iceland. It’s only one of many photos." • Gene Pensiero - "Each morning, our little ones would gather up dozens of snails and put them on our patio table and watch them take their trip back to the flower beds they came from." • Austin Neill - "Little Corona Beach sunrise" • Marek Okon - "It has always been a dream to travel to Micronesia, but it’s a whole other story to get the opportunity to go, and dive the biggest graveyard of WWII ships in the world. The place I am speaking of is Chuck Lagoon of the Federated States of Micronesia, located about 1,000km south east from Guam on the Pacific Ocean. This is the remains of one of the merchant ships that sunk during Operation Hailstorm that took place in 1944." • Silas Baisch - "untitled image" • Angela Compagnone - "Trash found on a beach. https://angelacompagnone.com/series#/advertisingseapollution/" • Brian Yurasits - "A single-use plastic water bottle that I found while snorkeling in The Gili Islands, Indonesia. Use less plastic when you travel, it makes a real difference! Follow on Instagram @wildlife_by_yuri" • Camille Minouflet - "San Lorenzo sunset reflected in the sea" • Peter Fogden - "untitled image" • Paola Ocaranza - "Whales season "