Friday, October 14, 2011

Salmon Pin Pushing

This is a really simple pin pushing but with the grey fish on one side and the red, spawning salmon on the other it really does add to the salmon unit!  This was one of our sound of the week projects for this week since we started with 's'.

Making a Salmon Redd

This idea came from an old write up I found when I borrowed a friends Salmon Unit binder!  We've been discussing the salmon's lifecycle and their amazing journey back from the ocean when it's time for them to spawn.  Their Redd is the nest the female makes to lay her eggs in from swishing her tail in the rocks of the riverbed!   

On the tray are 3 different colors of paper representing the rocks, gravel, and dirt in the river bed, a glue stick, a small bowl of red paint, a pencil with tape around the end to dab in the paint, a damp sponge to wipe off the pencil with, and a square of blue paper representing the creek.   

A salmon Redd!  They've really enjoyed this hands on activity and it helped envision what this salmon redd looks like!

Color Mixing Pumpkin Work!

I made yellow and red play dough and rolled them into individual balls.  In the basket is a pin poker to 'dot' their initials with on the bottom of the pumpkin, and I cut up a thin willow branch for the stems.

First they make 'snakes' and then twist them together.  It takes quite a while for the colors to mix to it's a lot of rolling, squeezing, and pinching for them!

It took her probably 10 minutes to get this orange color!

Here it is all done!  My friend Tiffany had the idea of making a small pumpkin patch on top of a little shelf!  We lined it with brown felt and I just cut some leaves off a ground cover plant off the playground!

Hammering Nails into a Pumpkin

I can't remember where I heard of this idea but I did it last year as well!  I showed it at circle time making sure everyone knew to wear the goggles, hold the hammer with two hands, and do gentle taps so everyone was safe!

 They first do 5 gentle taps while holding the nail on the line with their fingers.  Then they are sure to keep two hands on the hammer as they are nailing it in the pumpkin.
 This was in use all morning long and all these nails were done in 1 hour of work time!  I think I'll draw another face on the opposite side of the pumpkin to get more use out of it!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Halloween Party Invitation

Each year at the school I'm at we have an annual Dad's Pumpkin Night.  The kids come in costume and the dad's too if they wish.  They carve a pumpkin together, play games, and at the end of the night the kids all sing songs!  I try and think of a clever and new invitation each year and this is what I came up with this year.  I used a bat die cut at Ben Franklin on black sparkly scrapbook paper.  Then they used the circle metal inset to trace the 'Harvest Moon' and glued it down and the bats on top.

 On a separate piece of paper all the details of the night that they glue and then sign their name!  I love the bats on the moon so much I'm brainstorming a bats on the moon counting work for next year!

Sunflower Tweezing

We have many sunflowers around our area this time of year including in our garden at school!  For our lifecycle study this year we are doing a week on sunflowers.  These ones were right from our garden!  We've been reading many books about sunflowers, their lifecycle, and how they provide food for birds in the fall (which we've been observing on our playground).  

For this lesson I read this book which has great pictures and goes along in a rhythmic rhyme similar to 'The House That Jack Built".  Very engaging for all and it tells the story of the sunflowers life and shows birds eating the seeds and then dropping some which grow more!  The lifecycle!
 I showed them this one first.  This is out of our garden on the plaground picked clean from the birds!
 Then we gently scraped off all the tiny flowers from the sunflower head to reveal the seeds!  Each child had a turn with this at circle and it is quite fun to do!
Now it is ready to go on the shelf for them to tweeze the seeds out of the sunflower head one at a time!  This child had an audience around her watching in Awe!  The magnifying glass is fun for them to have a closer look at the seeds and the hole it came from!  Of course, they love this!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Parts of the Sunflower

I am a big fan of the 3 part card activities and make multiple kinds of them for every unit, theme, or holiday we study!  You can find pretty much any black lined master online and it's such a great way for the kids to learn so many different concepts.  Making their own book is always a great take home work too!

This is for my sunflower unit and if you want the master just email me and I'll send it to you!

Pumpkin Chalkboard

This idea came from my friend Tiffany.  The first year I did it I got one of the artificial pumpkins from Michaels that's round (solid- like a pumpkin).  I found it tricky for them to draw on it.  Last year I found this.  It was also at Michaels and it's made out of balsa wood.  I spray painted it with chalkboard paint and I think I used 2 coats.
 It's a great art work to have out so early in the year.  Simple, clean, and fun! 

Sunflower Sequence

I found a coloring sheet online and made a sunflower lifecycle activity out of it.  There's also a master for them to color, cut, and glue once they complete the matching part.

Acorn Tonging

For October it's so fun to have themed practical life and so easy too with all the items you can find at craft and party stores!  My director picked up this glass acorn container at Michaels. 

 The school already had the wooden acrons that are inside and they fit perfectly on this pallette 

Spiders on a Web

This a super simple tweezing work that I like to put out around Halloween.  I printed out a spiderweb image on orange paper, cut it out in a circle, and laminated it.  The tiny spiders can be found at any party store around Halloween.

They simply tweeze the spiders on to the web!

Fishing for Salmon

We are doing a lifecycle of the salmon unit this October.  Salmon are native to where we live so there's lots of opportunity to see them in action at this time of year both at the fish hatchery's and in local rivers!  This is one of the works I'll introduce on the first day we talk about salmon. This idea came from my friend who I interned under!
It's just a simple plastic storage container lined with blue felt, rocks from the playground, and I sprinkled some flat marbles all around to represent salmon eggs.

 I tied a piece of hemp string to a wooden dowel (can be bought at craft stores) and hot glued magnets to the end of it.  The fish are printed off on cardstock (from google images) and I punched a hole around their mouths with a tiny hole punch and put metal jump rings (for jewelry) through them.
They can just gently move the fishing pole back and forth and the catch the salmon!  There are 3 different sizes.
Here's a cute song to sing while doing it.
(Sung To: Row, Row, Row your boat)
Submitted byJenni
Catch, catch, catch a fish, 

Hook it on your line. 
Reel it, reel it, reel it, 
This one will be mine.

Sunflower Art

For the first week of October we are doing a short study on the lifecycle of the sunflower to go along with your year long lifecycle theme.  This art project turned out very nice!  
Here is how it's set up on the tray.  In the jar is glue, and instead of tissue paper which is so thin it can be trick to work, especially at the beginning of the year, I used crepe paper (streamers) from the party store!

 I have a 8 1/2 x 11 piece of off white card stock with a small circle drawn on it.  The first step is to fringe cut the small yellow rectangles of crepe paper and glue them around the circle.  You can add as much or as little as you wish.  The older kids add more covering all the gaps.

Next they cut out the circle on the beige paper and glue it over the first circle and on the ends of the crepe paper holding it down.
They paint that circle with glue all over.
 Sprinkle with sunflowers and add a stem and leaves!  Beautiful!