Getting to the Core

1-2-3 Do An Awesome Autumn Activity With Me!

Because my Y5's needed to strengthen their finger muscles, I tried to think of interesting and fun ways to help them do that.  Peeling and sharpening crayons, and then pinching clumps of shavings and sprinkling them on the print of a tree, provided excellent practice; the completed projects looked truly outstanding!

fall arts and crafts, leaf activities, leaf crafts, fall crafts, chlorophyll activities, fall bulletin boards, ideas for october bulletin boards, fall leaf bulletin boards,melted crayon activitiesI'd introduce autumn with a variety of books.  After reading a few, we'd have a discussion about the various colors that leaves turn, and why they do so, (chlorophyll was a brand new vocabulary word for all of them). 

They'd transition to some table top activities, and while they were busy, I called students up individually to make their creation with me or a room helper.  Students could also be peeling their old crayons at this time as well. 

fall arts and crafts, leaf activities, leaf crafts, fall crafts, chlorophyll activities, fall bulletin boards, ideas for october bulletin boards, fall leaf bulletin boards,melted crayon activitiesI've included  7 different trees with bare branches for you to choose from, or run off a selection on white construction paper and give children a choice. 

Children can add more pizzazz to their picture by coloring their tree with a brown crayon.  This should be done AFTER you have "melted" the leaves on, or the trunk will also melt.

fall arts and crafts, leaf activities, leaf crafts, fall crafts, chlorophyll activities, fall bulletin boards, ideas for october bulletin boards, fall leaf bulletin boards,melted crayon activitiesSet this activity up as a center, and call children to the table to shave the red, orange, yellow, brown and green (peeled) crayons with a crayon sharpener.

They made their piles on 5 small paper plates and then pinched a few shavings from each color-pile and sprinkled them onto their tree branches. 

Gently brush any stray crayon shavings onto the tree if they happen to fall elsewhere. As my students "sprinkled" I'd ask them why the leaves turned color?  I was looking for "Because the green leaves lose their chlorophyll."

The teacher or helper gently puts a sheet of wax paper over their tree and presses a warm iron onto the paper.  

If you slowly press the iron in an arched motion, the colors will run together to create more shades and you'll have a thicker looking tree.  If you just press and then lift, the colors won't run as much and this creates a different affect.   When you are satisfied with the way the "melting"  looks, carefully peel the wax paper off.  

My kiddo’s always oohed and ahhed over their beautiful autumn tree.   For extra pop, mount the fall trees on black construction paper.  They make a lovely bulletin board or hallway display.  You can also punch a hole in the top, add a yarn loop and hang back-to-back from the ceiling.  Click on the link to view/download the Autumn Tree Crayon Melts.

Thanks for visiting today.  I design daily and try to blog about it, so I hope you can stop by tomorrow to see the latest FREEBIES hot off the press.  Feel free to PIN away.  If you'd like to take a peek at all of the other educational FREEBIES that I post, click on the big heart to the right of the blog.

"A lot of very successful people are risk-takers.  Unless you're willing to do that--to have a go--fail miserably, and have another go--success won't happen." -Phillip Adams

 1-2-3 Come Make A Multi-Purpose Scarecrow With Me

Since there are so many standards on our plates these days, there never seems to be enough time for everything, let alone a fun seasonal craft that we know our students would enjoy. That's why I spend so much time designing hands-on "craftivities" that revolve around all sorts of standards. 

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsBecause it's so comprehensive, it took me several days to complete this Common Core scarecrow, and even more hours to make a sample of all 11 scarecrows, but it was time well spent, as they turned out so cute, are easy for your kiddos to make, and reinfore the following: 

Upper and lowercase letters, vowels, sc blend, beginning s sounds, matching words with pictures, numbers 0-30, odd and even, skip counting by 2s, 3s, 5s & 10s, shapes, telling time, colors, contractions, number words, color words, compound words, CVC words, and rhyming words.

Completed projects make a wonderful fall bulletin board, or look sweet hanging back-to-back from the ceiling.

To make this extra special, fold a sheet of white construction paper, have students trace their hand and then cut once, to get two hand prints for their scarecrow's "gloves".  I ran yellow construction paper through a shredder to make the "hair". 

Run off the scarecrow's body templates on a variety of colors of construction paper.  Students trim and glue together. 

For more fine motor practice, cut yellow rectangles with a paper cutter.  Have students snip the bottom portion and glue the "hay" to the back of the scarecrow's pant legs, then crumple.

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsI purposely made these patterns super simple to cut out, but if you think this is too much for PK kiddos, have a room helper trace once and then cut 3-6 shirts and pants out at a time,  leaving just the head for preschoolers to cut out.  

There's a blank head so children can draw their own scarecrow face, as well as a completed template for little ones to color.

 scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsStudents make their scarecrow and then trim and glue on the appropriate patches.  The vowel scarecrow is especially versatile, as it not only covers vowels, but shapes and colors too.

For extra practice, when everyone is done, play an "I Spy" game and give students a piece of candy corn to use as a manipulative.  Choose a student to call out a "patch". 

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsChildren locate that letter, number, shape or whatever, cover it with the candy corn, and then raise their hand. 

This is a fun way to practice and review standards, as well as a quick and easy way to whole group assess, as you can see at a glance who is having difficulty. 

I've also included blank patches for you to fill in with whatever, plus ideas and templates to use the number, letter and shape scarecrows for matching games.

i.e. match the lowercase patches to the uppercase letters; match the number word patches to the numbers; and/or match the shapes to the shape words.

For more scarecrow-themed letter fun, click on the link for a set of scarecrow alphabet cards.

The following scarecrows are wonderful for vocabulary building and Daily 5 word work: Carl is the Compound words scarecrow; (Click on the link for an alphabetical list of over 3,000 compound words.)

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsConnie, is a contraction action scarecrow; (With an alphabetical list of 72 contractions)

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsSam, is a scarecrow that loves 37, 3-letter words that begin with S; (CVC practice!)

Scott, is the SC blend scarecrow, with a list of 50 words. The packet also includes an entire SC blend section, with lots more activities.

vSophie, is a scarecrow with 47-picture patches, for simple words starting with the letter S

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsFor a quick review, I've also included 4, Ss word, picture posters.

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsRodney, is the Rhyme Time scarecrow, with 56 words that rhyme with scare and a list of 274 words that rhyme with crow.

Write the words that rhyme with scare on the front of Rodney, and have children choose some words that rhyme with crow and write them on the back.

In the sample, I chose 24-scare rhyming words and wrote them on the shirt, and then wrote an equal amount of words that rhyme with crow, on the pants.  The alphabetical lists include rhyming words that start with every letter except U & X.  I chose one of each.

Finally, the number scarecrow, has several options and serves double duty.  There are number patches from 0-30, which  I traced in a variety of colors. 

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsYou can make Odd Todd and Even Steven scarecrows (front and back) or put the odd numbers on the top and the even numbers on the bottom.  (See photo.)

For more math number practice, I've also included skip counting patches.  Children can skip count by 2's, 3's, 5's and 10's.  There are matching worksheets in the packet as well, along with number cards, plus number puzzles in color & black and white.  

For more odd and even scarecrow number fun, click on the link to practice numbers from 1-120, in the Scarecrow's Pumpkin Patch packet.

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsIf your kiddos are familiar with that concept, but need to work on matching numbers to their number words, use the Norman & Nancy number scarecrow patterns, with numbers 0-10, along with their matching number word patches.

Glue the numbers on the shirt and the number words on the pants.  For more practice, have students write the words above their matching number patch.

Click on the link to view/download the "craftivity" portion of the Common Core Scarecrow Packet.

This section will be FREE for an entire year!  After that, you can pick up the whopping 184-page jumbo packet in my TpT shop for just $5.95.  Click on the link for Patches, The Standard Scarecrow Craftivities packet to pop on over.

scarecrow crafts, scarecrow activities, common core scarecrows, alphabet activities, blends, list of contractions, list of compound words, list of words that rhyme with scare, list of words that rhyme with crow, odd and even activities, vowel activities, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow shapes, common core scarecrows, shape crafts, shape games, alphabet games, odd and even activities, common core scarecrowsThanks for visiting today.  I need to unclutter my brain, so we're off to a nearby fall festival.  It's a beautiful autumn-weather day, if the rain just holds out for awhile. 

 "If stars can shine with darkness, so can you." -Unknown

1-2-3 Come Make Some Scarecrow Craftivities With Me

scarecrow writing prompts, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow bulletin boards, fall bulletin board ideas, 24 scarecrow themed writing prompts, writing prompts for fallI really believe that if you give students a simple and quick little craft to attach to their writing prompt, they will be a lot more excited to get down to business. 

With that in mind, I designed "Peeking Scarecrow".

scarecrow writing prompts, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow bulletin boards, fall bulletin board ideas, 24 scarecrow themed writing prompts, writing prompts for fallAs you can see by the pictures, there are 2 ways to display children's work.  Completed projects make an awesome bulletin board, or look sweet hanging back-to-back from the ceiling.

scarecrow writing prompts, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow bulletin boards, fall bulletin board ideas, 24 scarecrow themed writing prompts, writing prompts for fallI've included 24 scarecrow-themed writing prompts for students to choose from. 

Run them off, trim and give students a choice, or toss them in a basket and have them pick one. 

scarecrow writing prompts, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow bulletin boards, fall bulletin board ideas, 24 scarecrow themed writing prompts, writing prompts for fallIf they are unspired, they have the option to choose another, or swap with a classmate.

Children glue the prompt to their scarecrow and record their final draft on a complimentary color of construction paper.

The packet also includes a sample, so that you can easily whip off an example to share with your kiddos.

For that extra touch of pizzazz, there's a blank border template that students can write inside. Encourage older students to type their final drafts.

Click on the link to view/download the scarecrow writing prompts.  

scarecrow writing prompts, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow bulletin boards, fall bulletin board ideas, 24 scarecrow themed writing prompts, writing prompts for fallThanks for stopping by today.  Happy TGIF.  I'm off to hit some garage sales with my daughter.  Wishing you love and laughter and a happy-ever-after. 

"What you allow, is what will continue." - Unknown

1-2-3 Come Do Some Scarecrow Craftivities With Mefall border

Since TBT (Throw Back Thursday) has become so popular on Face Book, I decided to share some "oldies" but "goodies" every now and then on my blog as well.  I have loved doing arts and crafts since I could hold a crayon, and began drawing the Flintstones, Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck when I was only six-years old. 

personal scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow poems, scarecrow bulletin boards, scarecrow writing prompts, common core scarecrows, paper plate scarecrowsThe wonderful ability to easily draw all sorts of things, was truly a gift and especially encouraged by my grama Lydia.  She was always buying all sorts of materials for my twin and I to do crafts with. 

My love for art spilled into my classroom, where I incorporated lots of hands-on activities to help teach my students a variety of standards. I call these projects "craftivities".  I'm featuring a few scarecrow favorites in today's article. They were designed prior to all of the software programs, fonts and clip art that I now have at my disposal, but I think you'll still enjoy making some of these cuties from my hand drawn patterns. 

Completed projects make wonderful bulletin boards and hallway decorations, at the same time building a child's self-esteem, as well as strengthening finger muscles and listening and following direction skills.

personal scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow poems, scarecrow bulletin boards, scarecrow writing prompts, common core scarecrows, paper plate scarecrowsMy Y5's favorite scarecrow craftivity was their "personal scarecrow".  They are "jointed" so you can pose them in different ways.  Be sure and make a sample of yourself to help explain what you want your kiddos to do. 

I did this as a whole-group, listening and following directions activity and included a variety of colored construction paper shapes to use as "patches" for a quick and easy shape review.

personal scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow poems, scarecrow bulletin boards, scarecrow writing prompts, common core scarecrows, paper plate scarecrowsI enlarged my students' school photo on the copier.  The picture appeared very pixilated, which added to the awesome scarecrow looking effect.

If you don't have the ability to do this, I've also included a scarecrow head template your children can color, cut and glue.

When I was a freelance writer for Mailbox Magazine, my editor asked me to write a scarecrow poem.  The personal scarecrows were my inspiration.

personal scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow poems, scarecrow bulletin boards, scarecrow writing prompts, common core scarecrows, paper plate scarecrowsI've included the poem in the packet, along with a longer version, and hung them under my students' adorable scarecrows

personal scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow poems, scarecrow bulletin boards, scarecrow writing prompts, common core scarecrows, paper plate scarecrowsWe received zillions of compliments on this hallway display, and my Y5's really enjoyed making them. 

Click on the link to view/print the Personal Scarecrow craftivity.

Patrick, the paper chain scarecrow can help your kiddo's countdown to your Halloween party, field trip, or Thanksgiving break. 

personal scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow poems, scarecrow bulletin boards, scarecrow writing prompts, common core scarecrows, paper plate scarecrowsChoose 2-colors for the links and review an ABAB pattern, or add a 3rd color to do ABCABC. 

As I tore off a link at the end of each day, we reviewed a variety of math standards like greater and less than as well as subtraction.

You can simply make one to hang in your classroom, or set this scarecrow up as an independent center and have children work on one of their own.

(Assign as many links as are appropriate for your age group.)  To incorporate blends, have students write an sc word on each link.

personal scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow poems, scarecrow bulletin boards, scarecrow writing prompts, common core scarecrows, paper plate scarecrowsI think you'll find that if you incorporate a bit of art into your students' writing, they'll get a lot more excited.  An easy way to do this is with a topper or banner. 

In the Happy Harvest banner, students choose a writing prompt, (there are 3 options) complete it and then glue it to the back.  If they don't get down to business and complete the writing prompt, they will not have enough time to do the banner. 

personal scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow poems, scarecrow bulletin boards, scarecrow writing prompts, common core scarecrows, paper plate scarecrowsFinally, for a quick, easy and fun way to review 2D shapes, have students make this paper plate scarecrow.  (They look wonderful spinning from the ceiling.) 

Cover more shapes by having students draw or glue colorful "patches" on the scarecrow's hat or around the poem that's featured on the back: 

"Hello little scarecrow with the face so round.  Going no place--stuck in the ground.  Staring at crows without making a sound."

personal scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, scarecrow poems, scarecrow bulletin boards, scarecrow writing prompts, common core scarecrows, paper plate scarecrowsThanks for visiting today.  The weather is gorgeous so it's time for a break.  I'm going to collect some nature "stuff" for another fun "craftivity" that I'm working on.  Wishing you a fun-filled fall.

" Be a voice, not just an echo." -Unknown

1-2-3 Come Study 2D Shapes With Me

Since fall is in the air, I decided to put some autumn decorations up.  I have lots of scarecrow-themed things, as they can stay up through Thanksgiving.  I LOVE decorating for the seasons, but hate taking stuff down and putting it away, so the longer things can hang around, the better. 

My love for scarecrows probably stems from fond childhood memories, seeing all sorts of creations watching over large gardens and small farms in Wisconsin.  My Y5's enjoyed this mini-theme as well, so I used scarecrows to help teach all sorts of standards.  Here are some that I designed to reinforce 2D shapes.

scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, shape activities, shape crafts, scarecrow activities, 2D shapes, ccss shapesMy personal favorite is Socrates.  He's a "slider" as the paper strip of shapes, slide through the "window" to make his nose.   It was fun drawing and putting him together. 

As I putzed with what to do for his hair, I decided to put a sheet of yellow construction paper through a shredder. 

Rubbing a glue stick on the edges of his head and neck, then pressing down various pieces of shred, made the perfect scarecrow hair and "hay stuffing" peeking out of his neck and hat.

So that you can cover more standards, I've also included "sliders" for numbers 1-30, skip counting by 2's, 3's, 5's and 10's, as well as upper and lowercase letters.  Click on the link to view/download Socrates the Scarecrow Shape Slider.

scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, shape activities, shape crafts, scarecrow activities, 2D shapes, ccss shapesSocrates came about, because I made an easy reader booklet entitled: My Scarecrow's Nose. In the story, an adorable little scarecrow needs a nose! 

It's up to your students to decide which 2D shaped nose is the best for their scarecrow

scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, shape activities, shape crafts, scarecrow activities, 2D shapes, ccss shapesIt's a quick, easy and fun way to learn about shapes, at the same time helping strengthen finger muscles, as children trace and draw the nose shapes and then trace and write the shape words

scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, shape activities, shape crafts, scarecrow activities, 2D shapes, ccss shapesTo reinforce concepts of print, when everyone is done, read the booklet as a whole group.

I've also included a graphing extension where students vote on their favorite shaped nose. 

There are also 2 worksheets. Students trace and write the shape word, then match the shape to its shape word.

Finally my last scarecrow-themed shape activity is  Sam and Samantha. They are full-body scarecrow "danglers"

Give students the option of whether they want to make a boy or girl scarecrow.

scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, shape activities, shape crafts, scarecrow activities, 2D shapes, ccss shapesAs with Socrates, I used shredded paper.  Picking up the long shred, ripping it into smaller lengths and then pressing them to the back of the scarecrow, is wonderful fine motor skill practice. 

However, if you think this is too time consuming, use a few pieces of double-sided stick tape, then cover with a piece of regular tape when children are done decorating.

Because a pile of shredded paper is tempting for all sorts of shenanigans, remind students ahead of time, that if they throw the shred around and make a mess, they will not be able to use some on their scarecrow.  I never had a problem.

scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, shape activities, shape crafts, scarecrow activities, 2D shapes, ccss shapesSo that you can review lots more 2D shapes, I've included a template with extra shapes on it.  Students can cut and glue as many shapely "patches" on their scarecrow as they want.

Children can opt to keep the shapes separate, (see photo of Samantha) and glue the various shapes onto a piece of yarn, or they can glue their pieces together, which is a bit easier for little ones. (See photo of Sam.)

Punch a hole in the top triangle and suspend from the ceiling, back-to-back with another child's scarecrow.  Adding a few real buttons adds a bit more pizzazz.  Click on the link to view/download Sam/Samantha The Shapely Scarecrow craftivity.

scarecrows, scarecrow crafts, shape activities, shape crafts, scarecrow activities, 2D shapes, ccss shapesThanks for visiting today.  For more scarecrow fun, be sure and pop back tomorrow  The timer's ringing, so I need to dash off and check the big pot of Veggie soup I'm making for dinner.  Nothing like a nice hearty bowl of soup on a crisp fall evening.  Wishing you an ed-venture filled day.

"Trying times are times for trying." -Unknown

 

 

 

 

 

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