Elephants are the largest living land mammals with two different species - the African elephant and the Indian elephant. The most obvious difference between the two species is that the African elephant has larger ears, and is typically larger overall. The African elephant is also sometimes categorised into two sub-species - the savannah elephant and the forest elephant, with some experts preferring to refer to them as a seperate species. All male elephants have tusks, but only female African elephants do. The tusks are used for digging and searching for food. Elephants have no natural predators, although lions may prey on weak elephants in the wild. Find some really interesting elephant facts here, or more detailed elephant information here.
I don't know who was the first to look at a plastic milk bottle and notice the similarity to an elephant, but it's a fantastic craft idea and I particularly love this "Sparkle Lellifant".
Even young toddlers can make handprints, and this handprint elephant is lovely.
You can make almost anything from toilet roll tubes and here's the instructions for a simple toilet roll tube elephant, complete with printable templates for the shapes.
Paper plates are really versatile for crafting. You could make an elephant paper plate, or use the paper plate to make a gorgeous elephant mask.
For older toddlers, here is a great collection of elephant themed activities to print, particularly aimed at teaching the letter E, but also some colouring, number recognition and matching activities.
On a hot day, pretend to be an elephant with a water gun! Try drawing targets with chalk on walls or patio to practice that hand to eye co-ordination.
You can make an elephant trunk quite easily from the leg of an old pair of tights. Stuff with more old tights, or just with newspaper, then use elastic to attach around the face.
There are lots of elephant colouring pages that you can print and colour yourself. You don't need to stick to pens and crayons, you could use pieces of paper to collage with, glitter, dried pasta...anything small that can be glued in place!
Elmer's Friends - Young children love Elmer the colourful elephant, there are lots of books in the series but this is my favourite.
Five Minutes' Peace - A lovely story about the elephant family and a Mum who is desperate for a bit of peace and quiet!
Elephants: A Book for Children - For older children, or toddlers under supervision, a beautiful elephant book for children which combines gorgeous photography with plenty of facts about elephants.
Schleich African Elephant Figure (Male) - A really good quality elephant figurine toy.
HAMA BEADS ELEPHANT SINGLE PEGBOARD 291 - This blank pegboard can be used with your Hama Beads to make elephant shapes.
Hama Beads 10,000 Beads in a Bucket - Hama beads are brilliant, this is a huge box of beads that you can use with pegboards like the elephant one above.
Melissa & Doug Elephant - Plush - A lovely big stuffed elephant.
Elmer soft ball - For babies, young toddlers and older toddlers, a soft ball featuring Elmer the colourful elephant.
Hasbro Elefun Game - Classic and popular elephant game - catch the butterflies as they are blown out of the trunk. Young toddlers might not have the co-ordination, but they will be fascinated watching (under supervision only as the toy contains small parts).