You can view/print the February art templates at the end of the article.
Groundhog Day Picture
Review all of the basic shapes with this cute and quick Groundhog Day picture. Here's how:
- Run off the master on blue construction paper if the groundhog has seen his shadow, white construction paper if he has not.
- Run off the triangle pine trees on green construction paper. I have made them 3 different sizes so that you can also review small-medium and large!
- Print color copies of the groundhog so that each student has one to cut out and glue to their oval-shaped burrow.
- Point out the various shapes on the paper and ask your students what shape that represents.
- Students cut and glue their trees in a cluster on the left-hand side of the paper. (This project is also a nice review of left and right as well as other spatial directions.)
- Inform students if the groundhog has seen his shadow.
- If he has, they need to draw a shadow in front of their groundhog using a black crayon.
- If he has not, have them draw a cloud on a piece of white scrap paper and glue it over their sun.
- Children TRACE around the heart, as well as the appropriate yes/rectangle or no/square with a crayon.
- If the groundhog has seen his shadow, explain to your class that legend has it that we'll have 6 more weeks of winter.
- Give everyone a Q-tip and a dollop of white paint on a paper plate.
- Students dip their Q-tip into the paint and decorate their groundhog picture with "snowflakes".
- Set pictures aside to dry.
- If the groundhog does not see his shadow, have children color the bottom of their papers with green grass and flowers and put a happy face on their sun, for springtime is just around the corner!
Harrison and Heidi The Happy Hearts:
These danglers and quick and easy and if your students are like my Y5's they will LOVE making these heart-shaped pals to either take home or have hung as a delightful decoration, dangling from the ceiling. Here's how:
- Run off the heart master on red and pink construction paper. I like to do two colors because I think it's important to give students a choice.
- My girls usually pick the pink hearts and my boys usually pick the red ones, but sometimes the boys pick pink because they are making the "pal" for their mommies, which I think is really sweet.
- Cut strips of white paper the length of a long sheet of extra large construction paper (These will be the legs). (You can use regular size construction paper for younger children so that it is more manageable for them. I used the smaller size so that I could fit it on the photograph. I like the longer strips for legs because it's extra fine-motor skill practice and the longer legs look cuter dangling from the ceiling.)
- Cut smaller strips from the width of the paper (These will be the arms.) Students will need two of each.
- Demonstrate how to accordion fold a strip of paper.
- Children fold all of their strips of paper and glue them to the backs of their heart so that their pal has arms and legs.
- Students can decide if they want their arms shorter, and simply snip off a bit of length and then glue them to the sides of their heart.
- You can make the project as simple as this, or you can pre-cut some medium and small hearts to review those 3 sizes and have children glue them on for hands and feet.
- I like to make the small-hand hearts red and the medium-feet hearts black.
- For a bit of pizzazz, children can add dot-dash details around the edges of these smaller hearts using crayons or markers.
- Have students write their name on the black-heart shoe with a white crayon.
- If you opt not to do "shoe hearts", then have students write their name with a black crayon on the back of their large heart.
- Students add a bit of color to the face of their pal.
- To add a bit of pizzazz, if you want, you can add a bit of glitter glue to the dot-dash edges.
- You could also give each student two heart stickers for the cheeks.
- Wiggle eyes also add some 3-D pop, but aren't necessary.
- Punch a hole in the V at the top of the heart, add a loop of yarn and hang from the ceiling with a paperclip.
Super Quick Craft Card:
- If you have access to an Ellison die-cutting machine and the boy/girl silhouettes, make 2 for each of your students out of black construction paper.
- On your printer, make a copy of your class composite.
- Cut your students' photographs into ovals.
- Have them glue them onto the face of one of the figures.
- Students glue their figure to their choice of construction paper and the other foot-to-foot with the photo figure so that it looks like their shadow.
- They write their name under the figure with a black marker and then trace around it with a piece of white chalk.
- Add a paper white heart lace doily with the typed caption: Me and my shadow and present to parents as a greeting card on Groundhog Day.
100 Day Mask:
My Y5's love wearing masks. You can punch a hole in either side of these and tie them on your students/children with yarn, or tape on a Popsicle stick and have them hold it up to their face; either way they will enjoy wearing them to help celebrate the big day. Run off the master on white copy paper. Students color the 100 in zany colors with crayons or markers and then TRACE the words. An adult pre-cuts the eye-holes the day before to expedite things. Students cut out the nose hole. Glue on to a paper plate that has been cut in half with an oval cut out for the nose. These could have been hole punched and tied with yarn the day before as well. Have fun and Happy 100 Day to you and yours!
Just in time for Valentine's Day I made a few puzzles, a thank you note for helpers, a trace and write skill sheet, some pencil toppers + some certificates you can give to your students. Enjoy
Click here to print/view the Valentine Fun Sheets.
I hope you have a fantastic February, filled with everything and everyone that you love the most!
On the day my students earned their cup of hot cocoa by spelling the words HOT CHOCOLATE, I thought it would be fun if we also made a paper mug of cocoa. We hung our “mess-terpieces” in the window as a different way to display our work. It was a wonderful way to unwind after a busy day. The “chocolate” glued on the mug, reviewed the “oval” shape, and the cutting and “splattering” activities were great fine-motor skills.
Lay each child's mug in the bottom of a large box lid, have them dip a child's-size toothbrush in white paint and splatter a paint-flecked pattern on their blue mug. I made name labels for my students to stick on the center of their mugs as well as some punch-cut snowflakes. Click on the link to view/print the pattern. Mug of Hot Chocolate
Icicles: To drip or not to drip?
Cut black or dark blue construction paper in half lengthwise. Pour white tempera paint in a plastic squeeze ketchup bottle or empty Elmer’s glue bottle. Have children write their names with a white crayon on their papers and then turn them over. Remove one of the long sides of a box. Place the student’s paper in the box. Have them squeeze a thick line of paint at the top of their paper so that it faces the open end of the box. Lay the box on the table. Give them a straw. Child blows on the line of paint to make “icicles” down the row of his paper. After he has made as many icicles as he wants have them carefully lift up their paper and let it drip a little more, then set aside to dry. These are great put together and used as a bulletin board boarder or hung around the ceiling of your hallway.
Envelope Snowman Puppet:
Give each child a long white envelope, black construction paper rectangle, (for top hat) and some scraps of construction paper, a glue stick and some colored markers. Have them seal their envelope, carefully slit open the bottom (you may want to do this for younger children) and decorate their envelope to look like a snowman’s head. Wrap a piece of plaid ribbon around the bottom of the entire envelope and then staple it on the sides, for the perfect scarf. (Bolts of this go on sale after Christmas.) I also purchased large wiggle eyes and glue dots during the deeply discounted sales going on. They added just the right touch! Red-heart stickers or hot-pink sale-dot stickers make great cheeks. Children can add a smile and they’re set!
When everyone is done, have them think of a name for their snow pal, bring them to the carpet area and sit in a circle. Students insert their hand and introduce their puppet pal to their classmates. To get the “wiggles” out use the puppets to do the Snowman Pokey.
My Y5’s think it’s “snow” fun measuring things! They enjoy the challenge of scampering around finding things that are as long as their ruler, as well as measuring how tall their best friend is and then having their friend measure them. We do a subtraction activity and then compare their heights. I use this as an opportunity to graph how tall everyone is in the class; surprisingly there really isn't that much difference.
They also like to go out and measure how much snow has fallen on the playground or how big the snow bank in front of our school has gotten, where the snowplow man dumps everything when he shovels the walk. That’s why when they get to make their own snowflake yardstick they get very excited. Run off my sheet of 1-inch square flakes on 4 different colors of construction or copy paper. Each child will need 33 white squares, 1 pink square, 1 blue square and 1 light purple square. They glue a strip of 11 white squares on to their 36 ½ inch long piece of tag board and then glue one of the colored snowflake squares down to represent 12 inches; repeating this process for 24 inches, and finally 36 inches; the 24th and 36th square also being a colored snowflake.
I make my tag board strips 1½ inches wide. I’ve also included a list of fun things for your students to measure. If your students are really young and you think a yardstick is too big for them to handle, have your students simply make a 12-inch ruler. Have a room mom help you make the yardstick strips. When you are measuring the tag board use two strips for each child and do not throw away the excess. I measure 36 ½ or 37 inches so there’s a bit of an edge at the end of my students’ rulers to allow for uneven cutting. (I tell them that when they are measuring to use the snowflakes as their guide as they are one inch long.) Lay the two, 1½ inch strips of tag board, on top of each other and then pull them apart until they have reached the length you want. I mark that off with a pen and then glue the strips on top of each other with a glue stick, putting a piece of Scotch tape on top of each end for extra support. This makes their yardstick extra sturdy in the middle.
Have children write their name on their yardstick as soon as they get it. Have them cut two strips of 6 squares long. Have them put glue on the end snowflake marked with an X and put the other end snowflake on top of it so you have a strip of 11. Glue that long strip to the middle of the tag board yardstick followed by a colored 12th snowflake then repeat for the 2nd and 3rd (24 and 36-inch) strips and colored snowflake squares, making sure to butt them up against the previous strip.
Remind students NOT to cut out the individual snowflakes. Only the 3 colored snowflakes are individual. Gluing 36 individual 1-inch squares is simply too much work! I put the lines on the snowflakes so that students can count the squares and know how many inches something is. As with my class, you will probably have a few students cutting out the individual squares too, so I'm giving you a heads up to be on the look out for those little snippers. Snowflake Squares & a list of fun things to measure + a height graph
Just Hangin’ Around Snowman:
Making paper chains are great fine motor skills. Make sure you demonstrate how to put one together right before your students’ eyes. Some of mine always want to pinch the ends together so they look like raindrops instead of circles. I have my students press and hold their links together for a count of 10. That way the glue is sure to stick and hold and their chains don’t fall apart while they’re making them. We vary our counting from 10 to 0 “blasting off”, counting by 10’s to 100, and counting in Spanish. It’s a great way to review counting skills while doing this activity.
Pre-cut 1 ½ inch white and black strips of construction paper on your paper cutter, cutting widthwise. Each student will need 3 white and one black. I also pre-cut the orange noses, and a ½ -inch strip of brown and a ½ -inch strip of black for each student. These become the hat brim and arms of the snowman. Have children draw a face in the middle of one of the strips of white paper and glue on the carrot nose by folding the end of it and gluing just the “hinge” part down, so that it sticks out like a real carrot.
Have students draw 3 buttons on the bottom strip before they make it a link as well. Show them your sample. Students then make their 3 white snowman links making sure to start with their “face” link. Children fold their black “hat” link in half and then fold the ends up and rub glue on each end. Students glue the ends around the top of their white “head” link so that it looks like a hat. The top part looks like the top of the hat. Pass out the small “brim” piece so that they can glue it across the hat. Punch a hole in the top of the hat, loop with a piece of yarn so you can hang from the ceiling. Pass out the brown strips of paper. Students fold them, and cut in half. They hinge the ends like the nose and glue them to each side of the middle “belly” link for arms. Children can have them stick straight out, or they can glue them so they dangle down. Attaching little mittens also looks cute. I give my students a small sticker name label to put across the hat brim. You could also write it on with a white crayon.
- This is a fun center activity that students can put together quickly. It makes a nice tuck-in for the cards you may be making. To make it extra special have students glue their student photograph to the back message. Laminate them and then tie a ribbon or yarn bow and staple it to the top for an extra-special touch.
- Simply print off the bookmarks. Using a paper cutter, trim them and have students glue them to strips of yellow, blue, green or red construction paper. Run off the message memo and have them glue it to the back of the bookmark and then trace the words, sign it and add their photo. Click on the link to view/print the Mother’s Day bookmark masters.
What’s the tallest flower in the garden?
- Demonstrate the comparative adjectives tall, taller and tallest by having students make 3 flowers using green-colored straws for stems. You can pre-cut the two shorter straws to expedite things, or add a math extension by passing out rulers and telling students how long you want these two straw-stems to be and then have them measure and snip.
- If you have a Big Lots store in your community, they have huge pastel colored straws that make the “tallest” flower even more fun to make.
- Use a flower punch to make fancy centers for your flowers or simply run off my flower pattern on a variety of colored construction paper and have students cut them out.
- Punch holes in the centers with a hole punch and then carefully insert the blossom.
- Run off leaves on green construction paper. Each student needs 2 leaves for the short flower, 4 for the medium, and the tallest one, unless you are using the giant straws and then 6 leaves look nicer. This can be a lot of cutting for little ones, so you may want these pre-cut and simply make a template and cut 5 at a time.
- Stick the leaves to the straws using glue dots. I’ve also made labels if you want to have students affix those as well. Click on the link to view/print the tall-taller-tallest flower activity sheets.
Flower Power Math:
Students look at the number inside the flower and then color that many petals, and match the uppercase flower to the leafy lowercase stems on the bottom in these springy-skill sheets. I’ve made a blank tulip page for you to make more letter combinations if you want. Click on the link to view/print the flower skill sheets.
Small, medium and large frogs on a log:
- Students glue pre-cut brown construction paper to a toilet paper roll and then add log-like details with a brown or black marker. The frogs will be poked into the log so they can be used as a subtraction manipulative. Poking holes with a protractor can be time consuming so you may want this done ahead of time.
- To expedite things you can send t.p. rolls, construction paper, directions and a sample home with a child whose parent has volunteered to help assemble projects at home. The parent can simply staple on the construction paper and then poke holes for you.
- All children have to do then, is add the details and cut out their frogs. You can add wiggle eyes to one of the frogs for a bit more pizzazz. If you don’t want to make this an interactive art project you don’t have to poke the holes. Simply add tabs to the frogs and have them glue their frogs to the log, or for younger children have them cut out the frogs as ONE unit and use only one toothpick, to simplify things.
- I’ve made two styles for you to choose from. Run them off on construction paper so they do not flop over. I use scotch tape to stick a toothpick to the backs of the frogs so that students can poke them into their log.
- This manipulative is great to use with frog stories and songs that have frogs jumping into ponds. As you read the story, or sing a song, a group of students can stand in front with their logs and take a frog away (subtract) as he jumps into the pond. Count the remaining frogs left on the logs and then continue. Many stories/songs involve 10 frogs so you could make your own teacher manipulative using a paper towel tube, so that you have room for 10 frogs. Click on the link to view/print the frogs on a log masters.
For more fun spring art and activities check my 98-page May Art book. I also have a 78-page Frog Unit as well as an 83-page Flower Unit chock full of wonderful lessons to keep your students actively learning!
Why not become a gold subscriber and get all of these things at no additional charge and enjoy an entire year of fun with new things added each month.
Whatever you’re up to, I hope you have a marvelous May doing it!
I LOVE December. I do all sorts of themes this month. Just about everyday is a theme day, and many of the centers are geared around making a gift. I try to instill in the children that Christmas is about giving and not just getting. I have fond memories of making presents with my grama Lydia and I'm carrying on that tradition with my little grandsons now with a craft day at Nana's house.
I have 3 quick projects here a wreath, holly, and reindeer. You can print each one individually, or wait 'til the end of the article and for your convenience print one pdf with all of the directions and patterns. I have lots more creative crafts in the following books: December Art and Activities, Gingerbread Art & Activities, + Christmas Tree Art & Activities that will give you 100's of pages of awesome ideas to do with your children that will help you make adorable keepsake gifts for everyone on your list.
Wreath: The wreath ornament is sure to become a keepsake because their child's picture is glued to the bow. When we started to decorate several trees in our home I always made sure we had a tall skinny tree that displayed all the homemade ornaments my children had made throughout their school years. They were some of my favorites. They followed them out of the house when they moved on. Instead of using heart stickers for the berries, you can dip your student's finger in red paint and use their finger print. This will make it even more of a keepsake, but the project will be a little more time consuming. Clean up with a didey wipe. Click on the link to view/print the directions and pattern. I've also written a poem that would make a cute card to go with it. WREATH
Rudolph the Shape Reindeer: I always try to incorporate my report card standards whenever I'm doing art or center work in my classroom. This reindeer reviews an oval, triangle and circle shape as well as the rectangle that the children glue him to. You can either opt to paint Rudolph on an easel or cut him out of construction paper. His antlers also have several options. You can paint your student's hand prints brown and press them to the top of Rudolph's head, or you can have them draw two straight - parallel vertical lines on his head and then make two shorter, horizontal lines on each one; using this as an opportunity to review/teach those vocabulary words. Click on the link to view/print the directions. Reindeer
Click here for the directions and patterns for all of the projects. All Christmas Crafts
Bingo Santa Song: I use "Bingo" songs as a fun way to teach a new word - wall seasonal word and how to spell it. It's also another creative way to review subtraction. Each month I make up a new "Bingo" song and this month it's about Santa. I make 5 letter cards that spell S-A-N-T-A. As we sing the familiar Bingo tune we take a letter away (subtract) and substitute a clap until we are clapping 5 times with no letters! My students LOVE these songs! It's such a wonderful way to review reading, spelling and math! Click on the link to make a set of cards so you can sing SANTA with your children. Bingo Santa Song
Toilet Paper Tube Santa to go with the song: I've also provided a sheet of Santa stationery to use as a writing extension. Dash off a letter to Santa, or write an "I love you" note to mom and dad, roll it up, tuck it inside the tube and place it on their pillow, car seat, at the table, or any other fun place you can think of. Enjoy! Santa Craft
Christmas Ornaments: If you're looking for ornament ideas click on the link to view/print all sorts of FREE Christmas Ornament ideas.
Christmas Gifts: If you need ideas for something to make with your little ones, then you need to click on the link to view/print Christmas Gift Ideas.
Christmas Games: Looking for something different and fun to do at your Christmas party this year? Check out all of the ideas in this fun FREEBIE: Christmas Game Ideas
Christmas Around the World: Whether you're in charge of studying one country or want to take a world wide adventure, I have everything from a cereal-box suitcase to a sticker filled-passport in Christmas Around the World. Click on the link for this 115-page awesome freebie and enjoy the geography journey! Christmas Around The World
I'm not sure if scarecrows really scare crows away or not, but they sure are adorable, and are seen at craft shows everywhere! They are one of my favorite themes to teach, and my Y5's enjoy them as well. A scarecrow's body and face is perfect for teaching shapes and colors so I made up a cute booklet that covers those standards entitled: Scarecrow What Do You See? It's a spin off of Brown Bear one of my students' all time favorite read aloud's.
I teach the vocabulary word SYMBOL with this story. We discuss various symbols of November and different things that we see in Novmeber that symbolize this month, like turkey's for Thanksgiving, harvest, (cornucopias, corn, grapes), leaves falling (autumn), farmers in their fields harvesting those things in their blue jeans, scarecrows chasing away crows also wearing blue jeans etc.
After our discussion, children CUT out their pages and sequence them in the correct order, and then they TRACE the color word in that color. Their booklet is stapled to the tummy of their scarecrow. You can opt to run off the scarecrow and have your students color him, or you can run off the scarecrow pieces on construction paper, have your students cut them out and glue them together. I have pictures of both finished projects. When everyone is done, read the booklet aloud to cover concepts of print.
The second scarecrow craft that covers standards is "Shape Your Learning". Children can simply color their scaarecrow and glue him to the paper plate, or you can have them add a fall-colored paper chain to the bottom and have your students make ABAB or ABCABC paper-patterned links and dangle them from the bottom. They look cute hanging in the hallway. I've also included an "I like scarecrows." trace and write skill sheet where the students CUT and GLUE 2 scarecrows to the bottom of the page and choose their favorite. This offers the teacher a graphing opportunity which is also included. Click on the link to view/print these 2 activities. Scarecrow Patterns
If you'd like more scarecrow ideas you'll have to check out my Scarecrow Unit and my Scarecrow Art and Activities Book. Just click on the links. My all-time favorite is a personal scarecrow where I blew up my students' photo and had them become the scarecrow.
Falling Into Fun- Autumn Leaves Art.
I teach a lot of science to my students. I almost became a science teacher so it's a real "hot topic" for me and my Y5's just LOVE it! The big vocabulary word with our leaf study is chlorophyll. They are all ears to learn why the leaves change color. It's fun to toss a few green leaves into my change bag and have them say the "magic phrase" "No more chlorophyll." and then take out a red, yellow, orange and brown leaf! I made up this quick and easy craft for your students to make, that nails that science fact and vocabulary word. It's called "Sneak A Peek Leaf" Click on the link to view/print the pattern and directions.
For some great leaf templates and a cute leaf wreath "Color with Leo!" by clicking on the link. You'll also find a cute Maize Maze and Shapely Turkey there as well!
If you haven't read my October article Take Your Kids On A Nature Walk it's a fun read filled with lots of science and math ideas, and of course the Nature Faces that are sure to be a hit. Just collect leaves, berries, acorns, pods, sticks or whatever other natural things that you find on your walk, arrange them on a paper plate so that they look like a face, gluing as you go, and Wahla! you've created a spectacular Nature Face. Be advised tho' they're addicting to make! If you're looking for more leaf activities click on the link to see my fun Leaf Unit with 7 more great art projects.
Turkey-riffic! Our final theme this month is turkeys and they're terrific!
A darling place setting turkey that I dreamed up is a fun and easy turkey made out of a styrofoam cup. Buy a pack of 45 at the Dollar Store and you can make one for each family member or have enough for your entire class. The other major "ingredient" is a coffee filter, also inexpensive and come 50 to a package at the Dollar Store.
I've also included a turkey matching skill sheet, a "Let's do the Turkey Pokey" song, as well as a Turkey Pinch and Poke. What's a Pinch and Poke? It's a super way for little kids to strengthen their finger muscles and they LOVE LOVE LOVE doing them. It also helps to give them upper body strength as I have them do this skill sheet on their tummies. Students hold a fat-plastic topped tack and poke it into the holes on their paper. Safety rules are explained that there is absolutely no poking themselves or another child or a consequence will result and they will not be alowed to do Pinch & Pokes. They so enjoy this activity, that I've only had one problem in 10 years! If you want to do this activity with real young ones, you can give them a golf tee and that will work just as well, but make a bigger hole.
The other turkey craft that's included is called Turkey Praise. This is a wonderful way to build your children's/students' self-esteem and let them know that you think they are simply turkey-riffic! Just a few supplies are need here, including yellow plastic folks. They are the finishing touch and will make perfect turkey feet to hold a list of new spelling or sight words! I pass out colored index cards to make that a bit more fun. An index card is also the perfect size for this turkey's toes! Words that the child has already mastered are written on alternating colored feathers. They are sure to ask for more to "gobble-gobble" so their turkey can grow big and fat!
Click on the link to print all this "turkey-riffic" turkey stuff and hopefully you'll have a rootin-tootin' good time with your own little turkeys.Turkey Stuff
If you're looking for more turkey fun, check out my Turkey Unit and my Turkey Arts & Activities Book. You have to click on the camera to view some of the most adorable turkeys you've ever seen. My students so enjoy making them reinforcing our report card standards as we go! Our hallway always looks like a turkey farm. We receive lots of compliments during parent - teacher conferences!
If your little ones are nutty over numbers, try some of these helpful skill sheets. Make a Math Fact Family House , print off a number line, practice sums with a grid, trace numbers 1-100, or play the fun tic tac toe acorn game and reinforce addition and subtraction skills! Click on the link to view/print Nutty over Numbers.
I hope these ideas get your creative juices flowing and your energy ignited; and that you and yours have a wonderful November creating and learning at the same time.
Awesome October Fun!
Comparing & Contrasting apples and pumpkins via a graph and Venn diagram:
If you’re like me, one of your science units in September was probably apples.
I take my students to an apple orchard in October that also has a huge pumpkin patch.
My students enjoy a tractor-pulled hayride out to the fields to pick out our class pumpkin and we get a chance to review what we learned about apples as they pick 3 different kinds in the orchard.
I thought you’d enjoy comparing the two fruits with a Venn diagram and seeing which is your students’ favorite.
My Y5’s have already graphed which color apple (red, yellow or green) they liked best, as well as compared apple juice with apple cider.
To enjoy a pumpkin, I give them each a tiny square of pumpkin pie (some have never tried it!) as well as a taste of roasted pumpkin seeds.
Once they’ve sampled both kinds of fruit, I graph which one they liked the best. Every year the apples have gotten the most votes.
It might be because they enjoy that fruit in a huge variety of other ways or because quite a few of my students do not like the pumpkin pie.
Click on the link to view/print the apple-pumpkin graph and Venn diagram to see how your students do.
I do my initial Venn diagram on the floor with two hula-hoops, picture cards, and sentence strips, so I’ve made you an apple and pumpkin poster-card, if you want to try that fun Venn diagraming method with your students.
Your students will have fun making this plump pumpkin, tracing and sequencing the various number cards and stapling the mini booklets to the appropriate pumpkin part.
What a fun way to review a variety of math standards.
My Y5's have counting by 1's and 10's as a standard, but I've also included 2's 3's and 5's.
Choose whatever is appropriate for your students, run the masters off on yellow and green copy paper, and you'll have a handy reference tool for your little "punkins"!
Click on the link to view/print the pumpkin patterns.
Great Learning is something to CROW about!
So I designed a black crow where you can key in information your students are learning, on the wing-pages of the bird.
You can also use my fast-bird-facts if you want. I've also included skip counting by 2's, 3's, 5's and 10's for a fun way to review that standard, or have students write down spelling words, word wall words, or math equations etc.
Buy a bag of black feathers at a craft-hobby store and add some extra pizzazz by stapling one to the outside of the wing. I used a glue dot and stuck a wiggle eye to my crow for that special 3-D look.
You can staple the pages or attach then with a brass brad.
Click on the link to view/print the crow patterns. If you'd like a fact sheet on crows and an answer as to what's the difference between crows, ravens and black birds, click on the link to view/print my crow fact sheet.
For your convenience I've put October Arts & Activities from 2010 right after this article so you can scroll down for even more ideas!
Click on the links to check things out.
Looking for more? I have entire units on pumpkins, leaves, bats, fire safety, acorns, candy corn, scarecrows and spiders!
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I wish you a howling great time with your little ones!
Our main themes this month are
SPIDERS and PUMPKINS!
Welcome to our Arts-Crafts & Activities section of the Blog.
I simply LOVE fall and hope you will enjoy these activities with your children as much as I enjoyed doing them with mine. I designed some "Quick Crafts" along with a few that take a bit more time. All of them are easy and fun tho'; and If you're looking for more autumn art projects to fine tune report card skills and standards then check out my Pumpkin Art and Activity Book. My Fall Fun as well as my Leaf Unit have some great fall activities in them as well.
I’m big on recycling so I have at least one project for my students each month using recycled materials. This one involves newspapers. Some of my little ones were actually unfamiliar with them! They are a great way to review concepts of print, talk about news, and advertising, plus have them hunt for letters, and shapes, then spell their name in the smile of a Jack-O-Lantern. The orange colored pumpkin on newsprint makes for a very interesting background. Click on the link to print directions and see a bigger picture. Newsprint Pumpkin.
Pumpkin Patch Mobile
, p I try to incorporate science into my art activities as well, so this Pumpkin Patch Mobile made from a coat hanger is perfect. It also helps reinforce sequencing and cutting skills. Click on the link above for complete directions and patterns.
Dryer Hose Pumpkin
While visiting Hobby Lobby I ran into a wonderful gal who asked my opinion about what color to paint her dryer hose pumpkin. She was making them as center pieces for her church and said the idea was almost 2 decades old! I asked her if I could put it on my website and she said “Yes!” Then I went to the hardware store and bought enough dryer hose to make the pumpkins with my Y5’s! Their mommies loved their pumpkins! You can use a fall-colored leaf or, to make it more of a keepsake, do what I did, and paint your students' hand print a lighter shade of green than the construction paper you press it on. Trim around the edges, add a green pipe cleaner that they wrap around a pencil and you have the finishing touch. I had the dryer hose sections all stapled before hand. Decide how big you want to make your pumpkins. I kept mine small (18 inches) and used a stapler to fasten the ends together. I stuck a toilet paper tube in the center. Because the hole in the center of the pumpkin is smaller than the tube, there was no need to fasten it. The children hung on to the tube to paint the bottom of the pumpkin, when the time came. You can have them paint the t.p. tube stems green, but I had my students simply leave them brown. They looked more realistic and was one less painting step. Make sure you buy white plastic dryer hose. Most places only sell silver because it is flame retardant. True Value Hardware still sells white and so does Menards. Menards has a 20 foot bag for $7.99; this will make 11 pumpkins. True Value sells it by the foot as well as a 9 foot bag. This project will cost you a little over a dollar to make for each pumpkin, so you might want to collect some money for it, or do it only if you have a small class. Make sure you give the children big foam brushes so they brush on a lot of paint. Remind them that they need to get into the cracks so that no white shows. I covered my tables with brown butcher paper and had them wear paint shirts. As you can see buy the photo they really look like those miniature pumpkin gourds! When other teachers saw them they couldn't believe how realistic they looked and that my 4-year-old's had made them! Dryer Hose Pumpkin
Another recycling project that I do, is with water bottles. They make an adorable web-walking dancing spider sure to scare Miss Muffet away! When you press the "head" down she "bounces" up and down! Click on the link for directions.
To go along with your Web Walking Water Bottle Spider why not learn a bit of trivia about spiders and make this cool Spider Fact Flip Book out of a black paper plate. Click on the link for directions and pattern pages.
Paper Plate Puppet Theater
October’s just not complete if you’re not singing a few pumpkin songs. I especially like “Five Little Pumpkins Sitting On A Gate” but with all the hoopla over Halloween and witches etc. I thought it best to change a few verses a bit. Here’s a Paper Plate Puppet Theater I designed that you can make for yourself, or it’s easy enough for all of your students to make and take home. Click on the link above to print out directions and pattern pieces.
Cup Cake Cuties
I was in Michael's Craft store and saw the Wilton paper cupcake holders. They come in a variety of seasonal prints and are too cute! As you know my "mantra" is: "What can I do with this?" So I dreamed up "Cup Cake Cuties" Since we got our school pix back, I simply enlarged them on the copy machine and cut an oval head for each child. Cut some orange strips on a paper cutter and let your students have some much-needed fine-motor skill practice by folding the strips into an accordion fold for the legs and arms and then have them glue to the cup cake holder. You too can have adorable "little pumpkin people" dangling from your ceiling! Mommies are sure to enjoy these cupcake cutie keepsakes! Have them make the flower card also made out of cupcake holders for Sweetest Day, or save for a Mother's Day or spring flower activity. Click on the link to see that pix. FLOWER
Whatever arts and crafts or activities you're doing with your little "punkins" I hope it will be brimming with lots of fall fun. As always if you have an original idea you'd like to share with us, we'd enjoy hearing from you!
Here's a pix of the Pirate Booty Bag that I made for my grandson to take trick or treating. Michael's Crafts sells the bags for only $1.99. I used puffy paint for the lettering and white glow-in-the dark paint for the pirate skull and cross bones. He loved it!
As a "sneak peak" into next month's topic: Scarecrows click here to see my favorite scarecrow project I do with my students. I call it "Personal Scarecrows". Enlarge a student's photo on the copier machine. At this size it will become pixelated and give their face a true scarecrow look! We're studying shapes so I have examples of rectangles, squares, and triangles throughout the project. You can print my scarecrow head and design your own shape project or check out my Scarecrow Art & Activity Book for all kinds of patterns, poems and fun! There will be more freebies in November!
Until then "Keep On Craftin'" and making those wonderful memories that make you smile and your little ones smile!
I LOVE glyphs. They are the perfect activity for "listening and following directions!" Plus, a back-to-school glyph can really help teachers get to know their students.
No matter what the age group, students seem to really enjoy making a glyph. Glyphs are also a nice way to decorate a hallway wall and get other students reading to see if they can discover whose glyph it is.
Click on the link to view/print the back-to-school apple glyph.
Apple Tasting Mats & Graph:
The study of apples is one of our science units. One of the facts I teach my students is that apples come in three colors: red, green and yellow.
It's fun for them to taste the 3 different kinds of apples and then have them decide which is their favorite and graph the results.
I'm not only teaching science, but incorporating math and including snack time! What a great use of time as I cover a variety of report card standards and subjects!
One of the problems I had was that when I layed out the different chunks of apple, children couldn't tell which was the red, yellow or green one, so I designed a little mat for them to color.
This will reinforce listening and following directions, ordinal numbers, colors, that particular science fact and later, they can use it for snack time when you put their 3 different apple pieces on the mat for them to taste.
Click on the link for the apple tasting mat and graph.
Apple Pinch & Poke:
For those of you who use my themed-center activities, you know how important Pinch & Pokes are to me. My Y5 students transition from table top to centers.
Pinch & Pokes are one of my consistent centers. Students get a P&P, take it to the carpet along with a large tack or golf tee, and follow the pattern by poking a hole in each dot to make a picture.
If they hold their paper up to the ceiling and shine a flashlight on their picture they will see a "star print" on the ceiling at night.
P&P's are great for building upper body strength as well as increasing finger dexterity, finger and hand muscle strength and coordination and are a fun fine motor skill that students really enjoy.
Click on the link to view/print an apple pinch and poke. Run it off on red, yellow and lime green copy paper to reinforce the various colors of an apple.
One of the vocabulary words that I teach my students is spiral. Learning to cut on a spiral is a great fine motor skill.
Run these apple spirals off on red, yellow & lime green construction paper. Have students glue the top end to their white apple and let them dangle down from the ceiling.
They double as an introduction to autumn poetry/rhyming words, cover science, review the a & e vowels, as well as help students who are learning how to write and identify their name, + they make a darling hallway display that's sure to help build your students' self-esteem when they see their photograph and work displayed for all to view.
What a fun way to cover a lot of "stuff!"
Click on the link to see/print the Appealing Apple patterns.
Whatever arts, crafts and activities you're planning to do during the month of September, I hope they are simply apple-icious!
These activites will be FREE through the month of September and then they will be for sale in an Apple Activity Booklet for only .59 cents.