Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Farming in March

Spring is full of opportunities to teach fascinating facts about nature! Exploring farm animals is a popular topic and many young children are familiar with some animals. Even if you live miles from grazing cows and quaking ducks, young children have probably seen or heard about farm animals. Many books as well as songs for toddlers feature animals living on farms. Learning the names and vocabulary at a young age helps kids to develop important skills such as categorizing things in the world. A young child might begin sorting animals by putting brown cows and black-and-white cows in the same category. 

Learning about farm animals is fun! Using fact booklets help children to build their vocabulary and knowledge about animals living on farms, for example, sheep, goats, horses, cows, chickens, ducks and pigs. Talk about the baby names for farm animals and discover the fun of using onomatopoeia to describe different sounds that farm animals make such as the clip-clop of horses’ hooves. Let kids explore the range of products we get from farm animals. You can make a display in the classroom with empty packaging and photos of products. 

You can start the project by letting your kids tell you what animals they already know. Ask your kids to identify which animals can be found on a farm. Ask them if they know of any other animals that might live on a farm. Show your kids real photos or videos of the animals that they are interested in learning more about. Encourage creative thinking by using open-ended questions and use story-writing prompts about farm animals. 
With a combination of independent learning and reading and hands-on activities such as craftivities and visits from local farmers young learners can develop various skills. Small-world sensory play is an amazing way to explore the farm animal theme deeper and to solidify learning as well as further develop their imagination and creative thinking.  

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Wednesday, March 1, 2023

March 2023 Products

Every year on the 17th of March people around the world celebrate St Patrick’s Day with joy, enthusiasm and everything green. St Patrick’s Day is a much-celebrated holiday in not only Ireland but in the US as well as around the globe. Saint Patrick was the patron saint of Ireland and he introduced Christianity to Ireland. According to legend, he used the three-leaf clover, Shamrock,  to explain the holy trinity. Kids love to learn to draw shamrocks, which have three leaves – not four, like the clover. This symbol can be found on rugby shirts but also on the flags of Montreal and the Boston Celtics - the professional basketball team from Boston. Use the resource How to Draw St Patrick’s to inspire your kids to learn to draw clovers, leprechauns, pots of gold and other important items.

The mischievous Leprechaun is the reason why many wear green on St Patrick’s Day. Kids love to learn about this mythical creature who according to Irish folklore hides pots of gold at the end of the rainbow. Use a fact booklet about St Patrick’s Day to help your kids develop reading and writing skills. Print out the booklet and let your kids take notes about Leprechauns and illustrate their stories and research with stunning drawings. Leprechaun cannot see people dressed in green on St Patrick’s day so wearing green is one trick to catch a Leprechaun. Designing and building a trap is a great activity that challenges kids' creative thinking.
You can plan a themed day filled with St Patrick’s inspired activities ranging from color-by-code math and sight words. You can also use BOOM cards where your kids can practice reading short words and also color-by-code.
Want to extend the learning? 

The fact booklet about Ireland is perfect for learning more about Irish people's love for singing, dancing and storytelling! Combining the research with reading books about Irish Myths and Folklore is a great way to welcome March!

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Sunday, February 12, 2023

Dental Health Month

How do you support kids’ dental care?  Activities or a longer project about dental health can with engaging resources be both educational and fun.  Sadly, tooth decay is a prevalent childhood disease and motivating kids, as well as parents, is important to ensure a lifetime of healthy smiles. Healthy teeth are an asset for kids and poor oral health can cause pain and increase the risk of dental infections. Brushing up kids' knowledge and understanding of dental hygiene at a young age is important.

Learning appropriate vocabulary is essential to ensure that kids understand advice about how to protect their teeth. Combining drawing activities with looking for information about facts about teeth and what to expect when you visit a dentist is a great starting point. Start small and positive and keep things fun so that kids look forward to taking care of their teeth. Look at basics such as brushing and flossing. Using a toothbrush to paint is a great way to make some special art while learning how to use a toothbrush. 

Learning about a healthy smile from the perspective of an animal is a lovely twist. There is a wide range of books about visits to dentists and teeth. Reading a book about a crocodile who visits a dentist or a bear’s loose tooth is the perfect introduction to a session about healthy smiles.  Use craftivities to support the understanding of healthy smiles. Story writing and crafts ranging from making a toothbrush flip book to a tooth fairy can be mixed with math and reading activities. If you a looking for something special for Dental Health Month I have made a design resource. Designing and creating a Dental Office is such fun. Easy hands-on design projects are a great way to boost your kids’ confidence and allow them to create with joy, wonder and awe!

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Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Valentine's Day products

This Valentine’s Day take the opportunity to celebrate different types of love. The holiday is usually linked with romantic love but exploring other kinds of relationships is beneficial. Encouraging kids to mark and show kindness to friends and family members is important. Also, you can teach your kids about self-love and self-esteem. When you love and respect yourself, you set an example for how others should treat you.

Use the resource “Everybody Loves You” to engage your kids in activities that explore ways to care for others. Read the book “Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch” by Eileen Spinelli and use the storybook activities to help you keep the lesson focused. The resource makes planning easier and kids love the included activities that help them explore the topics in the book. Mr. Hatch is lonely but one Valentine's Day someone sends him a box of candy. It turns out that this is a mistake but his new friends show him that he is loved after all.

Add a fun twist to Math, English, Science and Art lessons by including Valentine activities. Teach number sense up to the number twenty by using a resource with a lovely heart theme. Help your kids to stay focused by using a Digital Rotation Timer for Centers with a Valentine's Day Theme. Boom digital task cards with a Valentine’s Day theme are a great way to capture kids’ attention. They will love watching an image emerge as they work through the task cards filled with counting and addition challenges.

Are you planning a reading activity? There is a set of Valentine’s Day Boom color by code with reading activities. Color by code is always popular and if you prefer there is also the option to use a PDF file. Print out the cute reading challenges and display the finished items in the classroom. A finished color-by-code drawing can also be sent home.

Valentine’s Day celebrations can be made extra special by including drawing and craft activities. Directed drawing resources provide kids with wonderful learning opportunities. They love using their skills to make gifts for friends and family.

Finally, Hearty Animal Crafts is perfect if you are looking for Valentine's activity that combines scissor skills with learning about animals. The finished animals make a beautiful gift. Valentine's Day is such a special day so make sure you fill it with memorable as well as educational heart-filled activities.

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Thursday, January 12, 2023

Winter Animals

Winter is an exciting time in the animal world! Kids love learning about their favorite animals during the cooler months. Animals have clever plans to endure changes in temperature. A project-based learning unit, PBL, is an inviting way to encourage students to explore how animals use different ways to survive in their environment. 

Reading and writing about animal adaptations in a context makes it easy for even young children to grasp the variety of ways that animals prepare for the colder months. You can begin the project by exploring the differences between winter and summer from the point of view of different animals. Look at the food sources, how an animal tries to blend into the environment and how animals deal with warm and cool weather. The PBL resource contains, two animals that hibernate, two animals that migrate, and two animals that adapt. A perfect resource to use as an introduction for young children.

The Animals in Winter Fact Booklet provide kids with opportunities to learn about how animals prepare for and survive by adapting their bodies and behavior. Some animals even adapt both their bodies and behaviors to survive. Observing the world around us is the core of science and directed drawing is a remarkable easy-to-use activity that helps kids to look closely at animals.

Nurture a love of the natural world by planning engaging Winter Animal activities. Save yourself hours of prep time and check out these seasonal resources in my shop. 

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