First published in 1881, Heidi has become a classic. It’s a story of friendship and love, and appreciation of simple things. It does, like most books from this time period, have strong religious undertones. Much of this box is already geared toward younger children, so we are categorizing it as both a Class and a Bitty Box.
1. Books: Clearly, this book is now public domain. You can get it free on your Kindle, or purchase a hard copy. If you need a bit of a break from reading aloud, you can also choose an audio version (free with Audible 30 day trial) to keep things running smoothly. And if you have a sensitive or younger child, Great Illustrated Classics offers a lightly abridged version.
2. Games: Neither of these games is a perfect fit for the book; we had a hard time finding one, and if you have suggestions, please leave them in the comments! For early elementary, Mountain Raiders focuses on addition skills up to three digits. Or you can talk about how both Heidi and Clara overcame obstacles and add some movement to your day with Obstacles.
3. Snacks: Check your local grocery store to prepare a Swiss feast! You can either include a certificate for the perishable items, or wrap them up at the last moment. Think goat’s milk, goat cheese on bread, Swiss cheese, and Swiss chocolate. Toblerones are even mountain shaped!
4. Activities: Kitchen chemistry is the tastiest kind! If you have a child that loves to cook, consider adding in a special bread cookbook. Not a baker? That’s okay, we have some chemistry for you, too! Make some goat milk soap with this kit. Goat’s milk soap makes a wonderful gift.
5. Crafts: Follow instructions to make a construction paper Edelweiss flower from Cutting Tiny Bites. If you have a crafter who feels inspired by Heidi’s grandfather, consider a whittling kit, with a book, a tool kit (please use your judgment about whether you child can safely handle this), and some woodblocks.
7. Movie: TOO MANY CHOICES! Pick one bases on your personal nostalgia. Did you watch Shirley Temple tap dancing in wooden shoes as a child? Get that one. Or perhaps as a child of the 90s you were more familiar with this version? Then again, if you’ve never seen one and want a more recent version, try the 2005 release (and these are just three of the MANY options).
8. Extended Education: Books are such a lovely way to travel on a budget. Get into some geography with a free, printable lapbook about Switzerland from Homeschool Share.
9. Field Trips: Heidi shows so much love to both the blind grandmother and the crippled Clara. Perhaps a trip to a local hospital or nursing home to spend some time with people in need would be a way to bring the lesson of loving home. Another option would be to go visit somewhere with animals and outdoor spaces, like a farm. Or you could see if you have anyone in your area that raises goats (urban homesteading is increasingly popular after all).
10. Bitty Box Extension: If you want to occupy your wiggly ones while you read, you can print some coloring pages for them. Don’t worry too much about the fact that there a quite a few from Germany and France. Heidi goes to Germany (Frankfurt) and European borders have shifted many, many times in past centuries.