How Are You Celebrating?
I was just reading an article that one school in the eastern part of the US has decided not to celebrate any of the fall “holidays” because of controversy.
I know that in many schools Halloween has “bitten the dust” for a variety of reasons, but I found it quite surprising that this principal is also forgoing anything to do with Thanksgiving as “not everyone celebrates it” and she doesn’t feel that it appropriately depicts Native Americans.
Personally, I’m glad that my school offers teachers a lot of lee-way in the various holidays, and has asked for a great deal of parent in-put in how we handle celebrating and studying about the various fall festivities.
There’s a huge amount of history, social studies and geography that can be covered in a variety of fun ways when dealing with the first Thanksgiving.
When I taught kindergarten we enjoyed being part of an all-school kindergarten Thanksgiving feast (4 classes), complete with either a pilgrim paper hat and collar or a Native American vest and headband. Children could choose which they wanted to be.
We played a traditional Native American CD as background music. Students sat on the floor in the cafeteria, with a long sheet of brown bulletin board paper as their “table”.
Some years my Y5’s have enjoyed a tempting Thanksgiving “Tasting” feast. To read that article, click on the link. I was wondering what everyone else is doing or not doing, and would enjoy hearing from you.
A Spooktacular Idea? You Decide!
The other day I was out walking our puppy, Chloe, in the dark and misty morning.
Perhaps it was because she was wearing her adorable little pumpkin hat, or maybe it was because my brain never shuts off, but when we passed a rubber glove lying in the leaves, it made me think of a craft project—ghost finger puppets.
We happened to have a box at home so I quickly snipped off the finger sections.
I wanted the edges to be a little jagged so they would look more “ghostly”.
Just as I had envisioned, their semi-transparent appearance gave them an eerie and spectral look-making them perfect little ghost finger puppets for a child.
To see which I liked best, I made some with black-magic marker eyes and then used mini glue dots to fasten some with wiggle eyes. You decide which "look" you prefer for your students.
They’re not only super-easy, quick and inexpensive to make, you can use them for a multitude of fun activities with your little punkins!
What to do with the digits:
Make a quickie center by putting up a TV tray covered with a black plastic tablecloth. You can buy round ones at The Dollar Store.
Put some safety scissors, the wiggle eyes, black markers and a Halloween bowl filled with the rubber gloves on the table. Demonstrate what to do and post your sample.
When everyone has made their puppet, gather your students together in a circle and do the Ghost Pokey.
Students should be wearing their finger puppets and do the movements with the ghost puppet. Click on the link to view/print the Ghost Pokey song.
Have your students sit in a circle and practice counting by 1’s, 2’s , 3’s, 5’s, and 10’s with their finger ghosts. When you count by 5’s and 10’s, have 5/10 students stand in front of the class and flash their finger ghost in unison as everyone counts.
Read stories like Three LIttle Ghosties, or 10 Timid Ghosts in a Haunted House and have your students follow along, adding and subtracting with their finger puppets. Click on the link for some ghost activities.
Students can also use their ghostly finger to follow along as they read aloud or use it as a pointer to show the correct answer on the board or on their paper.
Click on the link for a skeleton “I Spy”.
My students LOVE doing these each morning.
Fill them in with numbers or letters. Students point to the number/letter that you call out and then trace it. They take the sheet home and play the game again by tracing the circles.
I hope the rest of your October is simply boo-tiful !