Welcome Back To School!
I know some of you have already started, but here in MI we start the Tuesday after Labor Day!
A big theme for many teachers is APPLES so I want to center my "kids in the kitchen & classroom" around that delicious and healthy fruit this month. Apples are also really big in this part of MI.
One of my favorite books to introduce the alphabet is Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. Story time is in the afternoon and is often followed by our snack, so sometimes it's fun if our snack also relates to what we are reading and/or studying.
Sometimes I'll ask several parents to supply the ingredients to a snack-activity so that my Y5's can make or create their snack. Click on the link to view/print the Chicka Boom snack letters home.
Making a Chicka Boom alphabet tree is a fun fine motor skill for your students. I was hoping that all the letters of the alphabet were in a box of Alpha-Bits cereal, but to my dismay when I dumped out the box, I did not find a good enough representation of the alphabet to make it a worthwhile activity for my students to try and find the letters in their name.
In fact, the letters G, J, M, S, U, & W were entirely missing from my box!
Instead, give a cup of cereal to each child and have them pick out 8 letters.
Later, if you want, you can give your students a graphing sheet and have them sort and then count the letters in their cup and graph them, then make a class graph of the entire box. Did you find any letters that were missing too?
Click on the link to print an Alpha-Bit letter graphing sheet.
You can also compare your results to mine if you want to do some more math extensions. Click on the link to view/print my results. TeachWithMe.com's Alpha-Bit graphing results
My husband came into the kitchen and wondered what on earth I was doing, as I had cereal spilled out all over the counter. (Our puppy Chloe was anxious hoping for a mishap.)
When I told him I was sorting cereal, he then wondered if anyone besides me even cared? I thought sorting, counting and then graphing letters in a box of Alpha-Bits was a great math extension; besides I really wanted to know if every letter of the alphabet was in the box. (The answer could not be found online.)
As you can see by my photo the ratio of letters in the box is way off, and the largest plate is the one with broken letters. Perhaps that's where the missing letters ended up.
Could the Alpha-Bit missing letter mystery be because those letters are fragile and simply break up in the package? This could make for a great discussion or writing prompt! Anyway, my husband thinks I'm crazy. Are there any other creatively crazy teachers with me? I'd enjoy a comment or two for back up.
I made two different kinds of Chicka Boom trees. One with chocolate wafer cookies (palm trunk) and raisins (coconuts) and one with pretzel rods and red grapes.
You can have both sets of ingredients available, and let your students decide which kind of tree to make, or simply pick just a few ingredients. I find with my Y5's, that usually 1/2 of them do not like raisins.
If you do opt for raisins, you may want to soak them in water the night before. It was my grandma's "secret" for making the best oatmeal raisin cookies, as the raisins turned out really moist, plump and juicy instead of dried out.
Ingredients & Directions:
Munch and crunch away at your Chicka Boom alphabet tree today!
Remember to take some pictures so you can post them in your newsletter.
Grama Lydia's Apple Crisp and Ice Cream
My sister and I were allergic to so many things that my grama was constantly trying to dream up things my twin and I could have as a dessert.
Here's a delicious one that tastes wonderful hot out of the oven with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Drizzle some caramel on the top for an extra special treat. The cinnamon baking in the oven makes the entire kitchen smell yummy, and is one of my favorite fall fragrances to this day!
Apple Smiles With Marshmallow Teeth:
Cinnamon Apple Rings:
For a yummy cinnamon apple recipe and adorable smile poem to go with it, click on the link. She made these for Valentine's Day, but I think her heart border still works for anytime.
I hope you enjoy these activities with your children/students. Remember... "An apple a day keeps the doctor away!"
because they are such a healthy snack,
so eat up, and welcome back!
February is all about sweethearts and sweet treats, and lip-smacking delights! I've got some crazy concoctions for you to whip up with your little ones, that will have their sweet tooth more than satisfied.
Fizzy Sweet Treat: A Science Lesson For Young Students
Toss some "fizzies" in a plastic bag and dip a cherry or strawberry lollipop in it and you have one awesome treat for a little kid to experience. I never really knew what was in my "Sweet Treats" as a child, nor why it sparkled and made my tongue all tingly, but it was great fun. Your students/children can do this too and have a science lesson at the same time!
The basis of the sweet treat is confectioners' sugar. 50g will make enough for about 6 children. For that amount you will also need a scant teaspoon each of bicarbonate of soda and citric acid. You can buy the latter, in the form of white powder, very cheaply, in small quantities, from the pharmacy. Children will also enjoy having a lollipop to dip into the powdery confection. I get the small "dum-dums" at The Dollar Store so that they don't last "forever".
Directions: Mix all the powders together thoroughly.
Why does it fizz? It's a reaction between the citric acid (the same acid as in lemons) and the bicarbonate of soda, which is an alkali. In this case the chemical reaction happens on your tongue, as the two dry ingredients mix with water (saliva) they create a gas in the form of lots of tiny little bubbles. The bubbles provide the tingle in your mouth. You are creating the same chemical reaction when you drop a bath fizzy bomb into your bath water. The active dry ingredients-which again include bicarbonate of soda and citric acid-react when they meet the bath water. Try doing this with vinegar as the liquid and get a real fizzy, bubbling result. The reaction happens immediately because the vinegar is the liquid. Combining vinegar and bicarbonate of soda is actually an old-fashioned cleaning recipe, used to help remove suborn stains in the kitchen, I use this chemical reaction in September during my dinosaur unit and add red food coloring to the vinegar so that it looks like lava. I put all these ingredients in my students' baby food-jar volcanoes and they have fun watching them erupt! Keep your "Fizzy Sweet Treats" dry. Store in little re-sealable plastic bags ready to dip your lollipop in, or in a plastic food container. You could also add some red Kool-Aid for a splash of color for Valentine's Day.
Shake It & Make It - Ice Cream In A Bag
If you've got a few minutes, you can make another Sweet Treat with your students and have more science fun in the classroom.
Cinnamon Heart Ornaments:
A room mommy brought these cupcakes in for her daughter's February birthday treat. She got the recipe from the Internet and shared it with me. Makes 24 cupcakes
I hope you enjoy these sweet treats with your little sweeties!
May you have a love-filled February!
The snow’s melting; look at all that mud! That’s what these no-bake cookies remind me off…little mud pies! And that’s just one of the reasons they are so much fun for kids to make.
No-Bake Oatmeal Mud Pie Cookies
Build a Sweet Treat Snowman!
Ingredients per person:
Frosted Face Sugar Cookies
Snow Covered Logs
Ingredients per person:
Purple Sauce Slurpies
From a Liquid To a Solid
In January we study liquids turning into solids and then melting when they get hot.
A fun way that I demonstrate the liquid to a solid with my students is making Popsicles. As a behavior modification technique I write the word Popsicles on the board and circle a letter at the end of each portion of our day, if everyone has performed/behaved appropriately. It helps them clean up, line up, stay focused, get their work done etc. When all the letters are circled, we take the Popsicles out of the freezer and see that the liquid has turned into a solid! We also let one melt in the sun on our shelf to see a solid turn back into a liquid.
Popsicles with a Punch
Dirty Snow-Ball Cookies
Kool-Aid Cool-Snow Cones
Yogurt “Snow” Fun Pops
Dreaming up frozen concoctions with a kid in the kitchen can be "snow" much fun, especially if your state is a bit on the warmer side! I hope you have a great time with yours.
These recipes were all rather on the "cool" side, but January is also National Soup Month so why not have a nice bowl of your favorite some frosty day, especially if your state is on the colder side like mine is in Michigan. MM-MMM-Good! And you won't be alone while enjoying this comfort food. According to Lifestyle Magazine approximately ten billion bowls of soup are consumed by Americans every year! Bon Appétit!
Let’s trim the Christmas Cone! This is relatively inexpensive so that you could do it with your students at your Christmas party for a fun snack that they would create. Or do it during your Christmas Tree theme day.
Rudolf the Snack Cracker Reindeer
You can keep this simple, or make it an even heartier snack by adding cheese spread between two crackers. Because I want to do this with my entire class I omit the cheese.
Every year my Y5’s make a Classroom Cook Book and give it to their mommies for Mother’s Day. I often thought it would be fun to make a Cookie Cook Book for Christmas. I had one mom submit her “grannie’s” “Red & White Chocolate Drop” cookie recipe from Ocean Spray®, also known as Oatmeal Cranberry White Chocolate Chunk Cookies They are 5-star delicious!
My two favorite cookies to eat that my grama Lydia used to make were her oatmeal raisin cookies and her sugar cookies that we put our thumbs in and filled with a dollop of jelly. During December tho' the most fun cookie we made were her gingerbreaad cookies. She made them with black strap molasses which she believed was a cure-all for all sorts of ailments. I don't think our cookies tasted all that fine because of all the gobbledy gook we loaded them with, but oh what fun we had making them, licking our frosting spoons and then decorating them. I carried the tradition on with my children when they were really little, and plan to do it with my grandchildren too. Click here for grandma Lydia's gingerbread recipe from my heart to yours. There are two; one with molasses, and one without. Gingerbread Recipes
Gingerbread Play-dough Recipe: Now is a great time to mix up a batch of gingerbread play dough! Put it in your kitchen center or have a 15-minute whole-group gingerbread play dough center and give each child a cookie cutter and a small ball of gingerbread play dough to make their very own gingerbread play dough boy! Click on the link for this delicious smelling recipe. This is a fun activity to do after you've read the story. Gingerbread Play-dough recipe
Christmas Greetings-Christmas Blessings Snack
Bugles : Symbolize trumpets reminding us that the world is heralding the news that Jesus is born
Pretzels : Symbolize arms folded in prayer thanking God for the reason for the season; LOVE the greatest gift of all.
Chex Mix: Symbolize a blanket of warmth, comfort and joy
Craisens : Symbolize the holly berries that decorate our homes
Peanuts or cashews: Symbolize the planting of seeds of thanksgiving and peace on Earth.
M&Ms: Symbolize sweet Memories and the Magic of Christmas
Hershey Kisses: Symbolize the love of family and friends.
If you'd like to make this snack as a gift and put it in a tin along with a note, click on the link to print a copy.
To make this adorable Hershey Kiss Mouse click on the link. His tail is the stem from a cherry that's dipped in chocolate. His ears are almonds. MMMMM-MMMM delicious!
Are something fun you can do with your entire class. They make a nice gift that is relatively easy to make, incorporates math extensions, and is inexpensive. If you had parents sign up at your Open House to bring things in when needed, draw from that list for your ingredients, or tie it in with your snack time and ask that parent to donate bulk size jars of applesauce. A bonus of this activitiy is that your room smells fantastic!
Well that's it for Dishin' Up With Diane for this month. I'd love to hear from you if you have a favorite December recipe or holiday tradition, or if you tried one of my recipes and had fun with it. Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org In the meantime, I hope you have a simply wonderful time with your kid in the kitchen!