Your room will smell delicious when you make these acorns that are sprinkled with ground cinnamon & /or ground cloves. Practice name writing with the glitter acorns. Both make cute borders for your November bulletin board featuring student work.
1-2-3 Come Do Some Awesome Autumn Craftivities With Me!
To help motivate my Y5's to get down to business, stay focused and complete their morning table top lessons, I'd often offer a simple & quick craftivity that they could transition to, when they were done, or if I spied them quietly working. The textured acorn is perfect for this.
Use the acorns as a border on your bulletin board that displays student work. Your caption can be: “We’re simply nuts about...” and then fill in whatever you’re studying. Click on the link to view/download the scent-sational acorn craftivities.
Another sweet-smelling craftivity I call the pumpkin pie pomander. Simply cut a paper plate into 1/8ths.
For a quick and interesting review of fractions, do this in front of your kiddo's to demonstrate how fractions are formed, by first cutting the plate in 1/2 then in 1/4ths and finally into 1/8ths. I've included a set of fraction pies for even more reinforcement.
Punch a hole in the corner and tie a yarn or ribbon loop. Call quiet students up to the painting center. They paint their slice of pie with light brown paint. While the paint is still wet, help them sprinkle on ground cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice. Shake off excess. When it dries students can glue the little poem to the back. I've also done this as a whole group activity.
You can skip painting and simply have children color the edge of their "crust" with a light brown or tan marker or crayon. Instead of using paint, students brush Elmer's glue onto the bottom portion of the pie using a Q tip.
Remind students that they just want to make their pie sticky and not sloppy with glue puddles. Have a mixture of cinnamon-clove powder sprinkled on 8" paper plates (1 per table). Students carefully place the wet side down onto the powder and press. Click on the link to view/download the Pumpkin Pie Pomander craftivity.
I've included a variety of leaf templates + an acorn. Prior to the activity, brainstorm with children about the things they are thankful for. Write them on the board so students have help with spelling.
There are several ways to make the wreath: Children flip over a paper plate and glue the poem in the middle.
They select 8 leaves that you have run off on a variety of fall-colored construction paper. Older students can cut their own leaves, but I'd pre-cut for pre-K's to expedite things. If you want them to have some cutting practice, have them trim the elm leaf.
Children write something they are thankful for on each leaf. Before they glue, have them arrange the leaves in a circle around the poem. When they are satisfied with the appearance, they glue the leaves to the wreath. In the picture I used two oak leaves to make a "bow" and put an acorn in the middle with a child's photo glued to it.
The other way you can make the wreath is to skip the poem and cut the center of the plate out. As I was making samples, I liked a thinner circle so that the white didn't show through, but you still had enough "base" to glue things on, so I cut quite a bit of the ribbing off as well.
After students have written on the leaves, they rub glue all over the wreath and then press their leaves on.
My Y5's absolutely loved anything with glitter, so I thought that some "sparkles" would help add the "wow" factor they so enjoyed.
Completed projects make a lovely bulletin board, or hang them back-to-back from the ceiling in the hallway. Click on the link to view/download the Thankful Wreath patterns.
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"Without Thy sunshine and Thy rain, we could not have the golden grain. Without Thy love we'd not be fed. We thank Thee for our daily bread." -Unknown.
1-2-3 Come Do Some "I'm Thankful" Writing With Me!
If you're looking for an alternative to the "I'm Thankful Turkey" writing prompt activity that's you've done for years, you may want to try the Thankful Tree.
The tree-top writing prompt pages are larger, so students can write a bit more than on the typical feather. The tree is also a nice review of the 4 seasons, and a chance to showcase students descriptive writing, if you encourage the use of adjectives.
Here's what to do:
Print off the tops of the trees on appropriate colors of construction paper. i.e. a green cover, orange for the fall page, white or powder blue for the winter page, pink for the spring page, yellow for the summer page, and finally ending with green for the thankful page.
Via a discussion, review the various seasons and what kinds of things children see and do in them. Write a list on the board.
Look at the list and ask students to think of descriptive words that would make those things and activities "come alive". List those as well. This will jump-start your students' brains as well as help them with spelling.
Students should compose their rough draft on scratch paper. Have them underline the adjectives, so they can see if they have included at least 2 per sentence. If they haven’t, they need to go back and add some.
Children can work on a page a day as part of their writing block, or for the writing portion of your Daily 5 activities. Remind students to use proper spacing and end punctuation, as well as trace the beginning words of each sentence. I’d have them underline the adjectives as well.
Once they have written their sentences, students cut out their tree trunk and tops of the tree. They need to make sure the pages are in order.
Children start with the last page and glue it to the top of the tree, and then staple the rest of the tree-top pages together onto that last page, so that the staple acts as a hinge and the tree-top pages flip up.
To add that finishing touch, students glue their school photo to the hollow of the tree. Children can also draw seasonally appropriate things to each of the trees, or glue, paper punch-cut shapes. Seasonal stickers are also fun. I used apples, leaves, snowflakes, flowers and hearts.
Click on the link to view/download The Thankful Tree. Thanks for visiting today. I design and blog daily so I hope you can stop by again tomorrow for the newest FREEBIES. Feel free to PIN away.
"I read; I travel; I become." -Derek Walcott
1-2-3 Come Do Some Fall Writing With Me!
While I was working on the scarecrow packets, it crossed my mind that scarecrows are really not all that scarey? I thought of the scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz who wanted a brain, and I wondered if a scarecrow had one, what would he say? My brain needs a shut off button, so one idea led to another, 'til I decided to turn all of these thoughts into interesting writing prompts with a scarecrow character.
Getting students excited about writing, and WANTING to write, can be difficult. A teacher announcing that "It's time to write." is often followed by a lot of groaning, as if you had asked students to whine in unison.
To get my students enthusiastic about writing I'd dream up creative and interesting writing prompts to jump start their brains.
Instead of informing students that it's time to write, ask them: "If you were a scarecrow what would you want to wear?" or "Do you think scarecrows are scarey? If you were the farmer, how could you make a scarecrow scarier?"
Watch all the hands shoot up. With lots of enthusiasm say: "Great! Now choose one of these scarecrow writing prompts and tell me your thoughts in detail." Reveal the prompts listed on the board and have students choose which one they are most "excited" about. My kiddo's couldn't wait to get started. Woo Hoo!
Click on the link to view/download the 6 Scarecrow Writing Prompts
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"It's always better to try and fail, than fail to try." -Unknown
November is such a fun month! So many goofy things going on to trigger kids' thoughts and get them excited to write! From pizza to football, turkeys to forget-me-nots, there's a little bit of everything! Here are just a few:
Play it again Sam:
I’m thankful for our Veterans! Happy Veteran’s Day!
I’ll take it with everything on it!
Paging Miss Care Giver; you’re wanted in the OR Stat!
If you can read this, thank a teacher!
Now Read This!
A is for Adopt
I’m fighting for my life!
This freaks me out!
Also click on the link for 80 writing prompts. This site also lists another 50. I have my college students use this site to jump start their brains when they write in their journals. Make sure you go over it so that you can develop your own appropriate list from it. Do not just send your elementary students here to pick one. Although most of the prompts are excellent, a few of these topics are not appropriate for younger students.