Do you have a favorite Dr. Seuss book?
One that I remember reading again and again as a child is Yertle the Turtle. There was just something about it that made me return to it time and time again.
I was happy to discover that my kids love this story, too. They wanted an activity to go with the book, and pretty soon, this Yertle the Turtle game was born.
It’s one of our favorite Dr. Seuss activities so far.
Yertle the Turtle activities
- 2 or more empty egg cartons
- Construction paper (We chose green and brown, but your child may choose another color.)
- 1 or more game die
- Clear tape
Before you can play the game, you will need some turtles.
This is the perfect opportunity for the kids to do a quick craft for Yertle the Turtle.
Yertle the Turtle Craft
Begin by using scissors to cut out the sections of each egg carton.
We used a blue Styrofoam egg carton. But, if you are lucky enough to have a cardboard carton, you can use markers or paint to color each section to look like a turtle’s shell.
Next, cut 1 inch long ovals from construction paper. These will form the turtle’s heads.
Use tape to secure a head to the inside of each egg carton piece.
Your child can use marker if they wish to add eyes to each head.
Yertle the Turtle Game
Once the turtles are made, it’s time to play the game.
Start by selecting one turtle to be Mack (the bottom turtle in the book).
Place “Mack” on a flat surface.
Take turns rolling the game die to see how many turtle to stack on top of Mack. If you roll a 3, you have to place 3 turtles on top.
The idea is to see how many turtles you can stack before someone makes Mack “burp” (like in the book), and the whole stack comes tumbling down!
We had so much playing this inspired by Dr. Seuss math game that the kids didn’t even realize they were working on counting skills and fine motor coordination along the way.
You can easily adapt the game to your child’s skill level.
For younger children one egg carton may make enough turtles to stack. Older children will be able to stack more of them before the tower falls.
To work on addition skills you can use more than one game die and have them add up the total before stacking on the turtles.
More Yertle the Turtle activities
Yertle the Turtle Craft and Treat — Your child will love making this adorable turtle that they can stack and eat.
Crumpled Paper Turtle — This turtle craft would be fun to do after reading the book.
Cupcake Liner Turtle — Cupcake crafts are perfect for toddlers and preschoolers. This one makes some super cute turtles they can play with.
More Dr. Seuss activities:
- Simple Cat in the Hat craft
- I Can Lick 30 Tigers Today craft
- Activities for Hop on Pop
- Dr. Seuss Sensory Play
- Dr. Seuss Sight Word Game
More math activities:
Updated from Feb. 26, 2014.