The Very Hungry Caterpillar Retell Literacy Center Activity

Create your own The Very Hungry Caterpillar retelling activity with this free download for kindergarten.

This is how I created a Very Hungry Caterpillar retell activity to go in our retell center as a storytelling option for my kindergarten students.

Let me show you what’s in our set and give you the materials to make it happen in your classroom too.

It’s one of my favorite literacy centers and we usually introduce The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle late in the fall.

I like using this when my students are familiar with the days of the week and can see the pattern of growing numbers and when the pattern stops.

When at the literacy center, they read they act, they use lots of great vocabulary and are developing fantastic reading habits all while continuing to build their love of reading.

My kinders get to choose the book(s) they want to retell while they are at this literacy center. This one is usually a favorite.

What’s in my Very Hungry Caterpillar retell set

Here are the props I gathered rather inexpensively (and you can too) to bring the book alive once we knew it by heart.

I found a set of matching food pieces online. I cut and laminated them with the holes cut out so the caterpillar could actually go through each item.

I did also make hand-drawn pieces of fruit too for the Monday through Friday items because I was feeling crafty.

As a side note, the beanie babies were donated. But I know you can find them at a garage sale or find plastic insects at the dollar store that might work!

How to make your own retell activity

If you plan to make this a year-long literacy center, I highly recommend that you read the Retell Literacy Center Directions for more details and making everything run smooth.

Because you can make this kindergarten activity yourself and once you and your students are hooked on retelling you’ll want to make this a year-long thing.

Here are the materials you’ll need… (may include affiliate book links to Amazon)


And here are a few alternative free downloads that may come in handy to help you round out your props to retell this story:

What to do

Take your book copy, creatures and food items and place them together. A container like an open basket, a book bin or a large Ziploc bag will work!

I recommend laminating the five oranges together, the four strawberries together, the three plums together and the two pears together to help keep the “mess” to a minimum that that could otherwise occur from having so many pieces.

We liked to keep a blanket nearby these materials so that they could create a theater-like puppet stage to sit behind.

But all they need to do is have the book and the materials and use the props to tell as much as they can:

  • about the story
  • from the story
  • with the story (following along)

Encourage kinders to use as many words from the text as they can remember. With a patterned story like this one, it’s pretty easy, especially if you read this story multiple times before you release it to your students.


There you have it – how to make a Very Hungry Caterpillar retell activity for your class. I love that it doesn’t require much to get it done. {wink}

If you like this activity, check out this list of 20 more famous stories that are great for retelling in kindergarten. Most of them are just as simple to pull together and I’ve found all of the downloadable resources for you.

Other books that are great for retelling in kindergarten

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