Getting to the Core

1-2-3 Come Do A Pepper "Germs" Experiment With Me

Here's a quick, easy & super-fun little experiment you can do with your kiddos.

It's sure to have them saying, "Can we do it again!"

pepper germs and soap experiment about surface tensionI've compiled this activity in a FREE packet, so that you can easily duplicate and extend the lesson.

As parents and teachers we are constantly reminding children to wash their hands, especially now since the Corona virus crisis.

Children look at their hands and don’t really “see” any germs, so if they can’t see anything on their hands, they naturally conclude that their hands must not really be dirty, so why bother washing.

pepper germs & soap experiment, personal hygiene activitiesExplaining to youngsters, that unlike dirt, germs are invisible helps; but when you give kiddos a “visual” of how germs literally flee when they come into contact with soap, you're zeroing in on the importance of hand washing in a dramatic way.

When I was in school, “surface tension” was explained to us with a “pepper experiment”. The result of the demonstration is truly amazing, and provides the perfect illustration for “germs fleeing soap”.

This experiment has the “Wow!” factor, while still being super-simple, plus you have all of the ingredients at home.

Pepper Experiment IngredientsYou’ll need:

  * ground pepper
  * a bowl or plate
  * a cup of water,
  * a paper plate,
  * a tissue and
  * some dish soap.

You can also use a measuring cup instead of a plastic cup to hold your water. Because a measuring cup has a handle, this could be easier for little ones to hold on to.

pepper soap experiment pixI used a 1/2 cup of water to spill onto an 8" paper plate, then when I switched to a glass bowl to see if the container made any difference, (it didn't) I used 1 cup of water to pour into the bowl.

Watch my VIDEO for specifics, then use the FREE packet for your finishing touches.

Video LINK: https://youtu.be/fDWp6z1woBU

I’ve included my "script" plus the poster, so you can use it in your own demonstration. There’s a black & white version for children to color as well.

germ blasting soap postersFor younger kiddos, end with the “poster summary” of the importance of washing your hands; leaving it at that.

However, to extend the lesson for older students, have them look up the definition of surface tension, then for writing practice, as well as some data analysis, have students fill in the “Here’s What Happened” worksheet, keeping in mind their findings about surface tension.

heres what happened data analysis worksheetThe worksheet could also be done as a whole group activity.
I’ve included a surface tension explanation, which you can also share with them.

If your students are like mine, they are extremely interested, and excited about doing hands-on science, so run with it. For added fun, and further exploration you can use the “Does It Make a Difference?” extension activity

For example, “Does it make a difference if you use another spice other than pepper; hot or cold water; or a different container?” etc.

I’ve done all these additional “extras” & include my findings, along with photographs in the FREE packet.

germ fighter doorknob craft boyFinally, just for fun, there’s also an “I’m a germ-blasting super soaper!” craftivity.

Children color, cut & hang on their doorknob.

germ fighter girl doorknob hangerThere is a set of "doorknobbers" for superhero boys, as well as a set for superhero girls.

pepper germs experiment, explaining surface tension with a pepper experiment, personal hygiene activities, doorknob hanger craftWell that's it for today.  Thanks for stopping by.

I sincerely hope you find these activities useful.

Wishing you a safe & healthy week.

"Always remember: You are BRAVER than you believe, STRONGER than you seem, SMARTER than you think, and LOVED more than you know." - A. A. Milne

1-2-3 Come Do Some Hand Washing Activities With Me

this is the way we wash our hands activities, proper hand washing techniques, personal hygiene activities, hand washing song, hand washing puzzle, germ fighting activities, hand washing poster, hand washing puzzle, hand washing centersAre you looking for something to easily explain hand washing to your students/children?

Then I think you'll find my fun-filled "Hand Washing" packet helpful, and it's FREE!

5 steps of handwashing posterI've included a poster of the CDC's, 5-step recommendations for correct hand washing, it comes in both color for teachers, as well as black & white for students to color & take home.

when should you wash your hands posterThere are also two posters which list important times when you should wash your hands.

Before you share the list with your students, see how many they can come up with, during your discussion.

As a fun way to further reinforce the lesson, I've also included a 5-piece puzzle for these hygiene rules.

Teachers can print, laminate & trim the colorful puzzle to use for a center activity.

I've also included a #5 base for the puzzle, which will help preschoolers assemble the pieces..

Keep each of your puzzles in a large ZipLock Baggie. 

proper hand washing techniques, personal hygiene activities, hand washing song, hand washing puzzle, germ fighting activities, hand washing poster, hand washing puzzle, hand washing centersAs always, there are black & white patterns, so that students can color and cut apart, to create their own puzzle. 

hand washing puzzle pieces, proper hand washing techniques, personal hygiene activities, hand washing song, hand washing puzzle, germ fighting activities, hand washing poster, personal hygiene activities, hand washing puzzle, hand washing centers Demonstrate how to cut out the number 5 and then snip each section off.

When everyone has completed their puzzle, reinforce the rules as a whole group. 

Hang the base #5 pattern on your white board.  Stick magnetic dots on the back of your 5 puzzle pieces and hold them in numerical order.

You show the #1 puzzle piece and read it, then stick it to the matching #1 section on the base. 

dice game for how to wash your hands, proper hand washing techniques, personal hygiene activities, hand washing song, hand washing puzzle, germ fighting activities, hand washing poster, hand washing puzzle, hand washing centersChildren follow your "monkey-see, monkey-do" directions & do the same with their puzzle piece. 

After everyone has placed that piece down, read the rule again, then have children "read" it with you.

For added fun, and more reinforcement, have children pick a partner & take turns rolling a dice. 

If they roll a 1 they place the matching #1 puzzle piece on the puzzle base, and so on.

If they roll a 6 you can decide if they lose a turn, or if the 6 is wild & they can choose any numbered puzzle piece that they need. The first one to complete their puzzle is the winner.

this is the way we wash our hands song poster, proper hand washing techniques, personal hygiene activities, hand washing song, hand washing puzzle, germ fighting activities, hand washing poster, hand washing puzzle, hand washing centersBecause children love to sing, I've also included a song in the packet.

The CDC recommends 20 seconds, as the minimum amount of time for effective hand washing. They say that humming the “Happy Birthday” song twice will do the 20-second job.

However, I wanted children to have a more appropriate song to specifically go along with hand washing.

here we go round the mulberry bush songSo I took the tune from the nursery rhyme/song “Here We Go ‘Round the Mulberry Bush”, ( public domain) and changed the words to “This is the way we wash our hands”.

When I was a little girl we also sang “This is the way we wash our clothes” to that same tune, as we pretended to scrub away on grama’s old washboard.  

Online timerAs you sing the song, with my “wash your hands” lyrics, demonstrate lathering the hands with pretend soap, showing how you rub over & under the hands, as well as in-between the fingers, plus scrubbing the nails. Singing, while “washing”, will take the desired 20 seconds.

You can practice with this online timer: LINK

video of how to wash your handsTo show you the correct hand washing technique, check out this  video, (46-seconds) then do those movements as you sing the two verses.

I for one, discovered via this video that I was missing the “nails” step. I think that many others will find room for improvement too. Hopefully, the entire world will now do a better job of hand washing.

I’ve made a poster-poem of the “This Is The Way We Wash Our Hands” words, which you can share with your students.

germs germs germs videoChildren may wonder, “What’s the big deal about hand washing?”, so it’s a good idea to introduce your lesson with WHY hand washing is so important.

I like this 3-minute video entitled "Germs, Germs, Germs" because my students also say, “…but my hands don’t look dirty.” 

Finally, I've also included a little certificate of praise your kiddos can color.

There are two, on-a-one-page pattern, for quick printing.

One template features a colorful frame, the other one has a black & white one. 

free germ fighting activitiesWell that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.

Stay tuned for more "Germ Fighting" FREEBIES, that you can do with your own children or with your students. 

Wishing you a safe & virus free day.

"Did you sneeze? Did you cough? Be sure and wash those nasty germs off!" -Unknown

 

1-2-3 Come Do Some Sequencing & Retelling a Story Activities With Me

There was an old lady who swallowed a clover activities, retelling & sequencing a story activities, St. Patrick's Day books, St. Patrick's Day stories, St. Patrick's Day craftsDo you read "There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Clover" by Lucille Colandro?

My students absolutely love this collection of stories, and they are perfect for practicing the “sequencing and retelling a story” standards.

There was an old lady who swallowed a clover activities, retelling & sequencing a story activities, St. Patrick's Day books, St. Patrick's Day stories, St. Patrick's Day craftsWith that in mind, I designed these quick, easy & fun storytelling slider craftivities that will help your students retell the "Granny Clover" story in the proper order.

This simple craft is a great addition to your St. Patrick’s Day activities too.

There was an old lady who swallowed a clover activities, retelling & sequencing a story activities, St. Patrick's Day books, St. Patrick's Day stories, St. Patrick's Day craftsThere are 5 “cover” options available. Pick your favorite or give children a choice.

All of them are easy-peasy to cut, as they are in a box shape; however, you can also choose to cut around the patterns as well.

Check out the photo to the left to see which style you like best.

There was an old lady who swallowed a clover activities, retelling & sequencing a story activities, St. Patrick's Day books, St. Patrick's Day stories, St. Patrick's Day craftsI’ve also provided two smaller patterns with a shorter slider for little ones.

You decide what’s best for your students’ abilities. I personally like the cut out covers, which I do for all of my teacher samples.

As always, both color, as well as black & white patterns are included.

Children color, cut & glue their slider strips together, then insert it into the “slits” of their cover.

Since it only takes me about 8 minutes, to pre-cut the slits for my students, I do this prep with an X-acto knife, which saves me classroom time, by doing this step for my kiddos.

As they pull on the end of their “slider” the various pictures go through the “window”, so that children can take turns retelling the story to a partner.

I introduce the lesson by reading "There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Clover" , then share my sample with the children.

We retell the tale together, using the picture prompts on the slider.

My students now know what’s expected of them, and are very excited to transition to making a “Granny Clover” slider of their own. 

When they complete the craftivity, they pick a partner & take turns retelling the tale.

There was an old lady who swallowed a clover activities, retelling & sequencing a story activities, St. Patrick's Day books, St. Patrick's Day stories, St. Patrick's Day craftsFor an easy & interesting way to assess comprehension, I’ve also included a “Let’s sequence the story” worksheet, where students color and trim the picture tiles then glue them in the correct order on their worksheet.

Use the teacher’s colorful copy as a whole group activity, sequencing the story as you read it, then again as a review afterwards. Grab that teachable moment to practice ordinal numbers as well.

For writing practice, there’s also a “Here’s What Happened…” writing prompt worksheet, as another way to check comprehension, plus practice sequential writing.

Use the colorful template to do this as a whole group activity with younger kiddos, discussing beginning, middle & end

There was an old lady who swallowed a clover activities, retelling & sequencing a story activities, St. Patrick's Day books, St. Patrick's Day stories, St. Patrick's Day craftsIf you aren't familiar with the book, you can click on the LINK & check out a reading of "There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Clover" on YouTube.  It's less than 3 minutes long. 

I like to show a quick video at the end of our day, which reinforces the lesson.

I also encourage my students to share their slider & storytelling skills with their family when they get home.

St Patrick's Day activities, shamrock 10 frames, March math activities, St. Patrick's Day gamesSince St. Patrick's Day is just around the corner, today's FREEBIE is a shamrock-themed set of 10 frames, which includes some quick, easy & fun math activities.

There was an old lady who swallowed a clover activities, retelling & sequencing a story activities, St. Patrick's Day books, St. Patrick's Day stories, St. Patrick's Day craftsWell that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by. 

The sun is endeavoring to peek out from behind the clouds, so I think I'll venture out with my pup Chloe, to breathe in some nice fresh air. 

Wishing you a wonderful week, and a happy-go-lucky St. Paddy's Day.

"May the dreams you hold dearest be those which come true, and the kindness you spread, keep returning to you."

1-2-3 Come Read Some Dr. Seuss Books With Me!

I totally agree with Dr. Seuss when he said: "You're never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read to a child!" 

a list of Dr Seuss books, bibliography of books by Seuss, synopsis of seuss books, a synopsis of 79 Seuss stories, an alphabetical list of 65 books by seuss, Seuss book what pet should i get, how many books did seuss writeReading to my young 5 students was my favorite part of our day. A time to relax and travel the world on all sorts of "ed-ventures" right there in our room, fueled by a splash of imagination. 

March was an especially fun reading month for us.  Our school celebrated March is Reading Month, took part in Read Across America, and had a Celebration of Seuss Week as well. 

a list of Dr Seuss books, bibliography of books by Seuss, synopsis of seuss books, a synopsis of 79 Seuss stories, an alphabetical list of 65 books by seuss, Seuss book what pet should i get, how many books did seuss writeI personally have a collection of over 40 Dr. Seuss books.  It was amidst this pile of fun, that I wondered just how many children's books Dr. Seuss had actually written. 

I thought the answer would be a no-brainer.  Simply Google my question and a number would pop up right?  Wrong! 

To my surprise, no one really quite agreed.  I found guess-timates from 40 to 60.  I couldn't even find a complete bibliography!  How could this be?  Hmmm...did I want to make the time to take up this challenge and figure it out for myself? 

a list of Dr Seuss books, bibliography of books by Seuss, synopsis of seuss books, a synopsis of 79 Seuss stories, an alphabetical list of 65 books by seuss, Seuss book what pet should i get, how many books did seuss writeMy curiosity got the best of me.  Zillions of hours of research later, I have come up with the answer of 64 + 1.

I'm proud to present to you, a FREE copy of my alphabetical list of Seuss's books.

Finding and getting all of the covers on one page, was no small feat.

Since I was on a roll, I also wrote a synopsis for all of them, which includes all of the “stories” that were published as collections.  (A total synopsis then, of 79 works.)

Click this LINK to grab a free copy: Synopsis of 79 Seuss books/stories. 

a synopsis of all Dr. Seuss books & stories(While doing research and discovering books and stories I had never heard of, I had to find and read them of course! Thus the "zillions" of hours, which was definitely time well-spent!)  I hope you think so too, and find it helpful.

So why the variety of answers? I think some of the discrepancies happen, because certain "counters" only include the books written under Theodore's pseudonym: "Dr. Seuss" and not those he wrote (but did not illustrate) under his pen name, Theo. LeSieg (Geisel, his real name, spelled backwards.)

A lot of lists also don't include the 2 books (The Seven Lady Godivas & You're Only Old Once) that he wrote for adults. (Most people don't even know that Seuss drew cartoons and wrote for an adult audience prior to writing children's books.)

a list of Dr Seuss books, bibliography of books by Seuss, synopsis of seuss books, a synopsis of 79 Seuss stories, an alphabetical list of 65 books by seuss, Seuss book what pet should i get, how many books did seuss writeAnother, often "uncounted" Seuss, is the adorable little book "A Little Bug Went Ka-Choo", which he wrote under the pen name Rosetta Stone. What? Why on earth would he add yet another pen name?

It seems that Dr. Seuss was writing a book with Michael Frith. He didn't want to use his name on the book, so Mike suggested he use his wife's name instead. Audrey's maiden name was Stone.  Frith thought of Rosetta and the rest is history or not...

a list of Dr Seuss books, bibliography of books by Seuss, synopsis of seuss books, a synopsis of 79 Seuss stories, an alphabetical list of 65 books by seuss, Seuss book what pet should i get, how many books did seuss writeThe rather expensive, The Many Mice of Mr. Brice, which was made into a 1989 pop up book: The Pop-Up Mice of Mr. Brice (Theo LeSeig) often escapes counting as well, perhaps because of the price.  If you're lucky enough to find a "new" one, you'll likely be shelling out over $300.

Counting confusion can also be attributed to the fact that Dr. Seuss wrote several books that were collections of stories.  Some of these stories were later made into separate books, like What Was I Afraid Of? which first appeared in The Sneeches.

a list of Dr Seuss books, bibliography of books by Seuss, synopsis of seuss books, a synopsis of 79 Seuss stories, an alphabetical list of 65 books by seuss, Seuss book what pet should i get, how many books did seuss writeBooks like Daisy-Head Mayzie and My Many Colored Days, which were published after his death, also allude many lists. As with the other LeSeig books, he did not illustrate these.

Does the "to illustrate or not to illustrate?" add to the confusion? Perhaps; who knows what factors people use to make up a list of Dr. Seuss books. 

However, my research included them all, which resulted in 64 books!  So why does my cover page say 65?

a list of Dr Seuss books, bibliography of books by Seuss, synopsis of seuss books, a synopsis of 79 Seuss stories, an alphabetical list of 65 books by seuss, Seuss book what pet should i get, how many books did seuss writeAlthough Seuss did not write Horray For Diffendoofer Day, Jack Prelutsky, expanded and completed Seuss's original work, so I thought it only fair to include it in my count. After all, it features Miss Bonkers. a teacher.

Alas, just when I thought my counting was done...Oh no! Along comes another one! 

a list of Dr Seuss books, bibliography of books by Seuss, synopsis of seuss books, a synopsis of 79 Seuss stories, an alphabetical list of 65 books by seuss, Seuss book what pet should i get, how many books did seuss writeRandom house announced that they will be releasing What Pet Should I Get? on July 28th, saying: "...it was likely written between 1958 & 1962." 

OK already! One book is fine, but that is not all! Oh no, that is not all...   

It seems that the publisher plans on at least two more books, based on mysterious manuscripts found in Seuss's home in La Jolla, California, by his widow and secretary. 

I wonder if one of those will be from Seuss’ unfinished manuscript “All Sorts of Sports,” which  sold at an auction in 2010 for $34,000? 

piles of papersCould this be a "too good to be true" thing, or did Dr. Seuss, like most prolific writers, actually have the proverbial piles of paper, stuck like a book in every "cramped cranny and little nook?"

Be that as it may, I will not be up-dating my current lists anytime soon, at least not until they stop finding things “every-which-where".

a list of Dr Seuss books, bibliography of books by Seuss, synopsis of seuss books, a synopsis of 79 Seuss stories, an alphabetical list of 65 books by seuss, Seuss book what pet should i get, how many books did seuss writeClick this LINK to see all 30 of my quick, easy & fun Dr. Seuss-themed activities that I have in my TpT shop.

Thanks for visiting.  I'm off to take some aspirin and curl up with a good book. 

My brain feels as fried as Sam's green eggs and ham.  Wishing you a stress-free day.

"The more you read, the more you know, the more you learn, the more places you'll go!" -Dr. Seuss

1-2-3 Come Do A Valentine Storytelling Craft With Me

story there was an old lady who swallowed a rose activitiesDo you read "There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Rose" by Lucille Colandro?

My students absolutely love this collection of stories, and they are perfect for practicing the “sequencing and retelling a story” standards.

video little old lady who swallowed a roseIf you don't have the book, and would like to familiarize yourself with the story, click this LINK to find it on YouTube.

With that in mind, I designed these quick, easy & fun storytelling "Slider" and "Wheel" craftivities that will help your students retell the story in the proper order.

Either craft is simple enough as a great addition to your Valentine’s Day party too.

There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesFirst up, the "There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Rose" storytelling SLIDER:

There are 4 “cover” options available:

  • There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activities2, little old lady "head options,
  • a full-body granny, plus
  • There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesa rose. 

Pick your favorite or give children a choice.

All of them are easy-peasy to cut, as they are in a box shape; however, you can also choose to cut around the little old lady’s head.

There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesI took pictures of both samples so that you can decide which you like best. 

There are also 2 size options available.

There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesBoth heads are bigger, with a larger "slider strip", while the rose & granny's body are smaller (on a half page). They have a smaller "slider strip" as well. 

You decide which best suits your students' abilities.

Children color, cut & glue their slider strips together, then insert it into the “slits” of their cover.

As they pull on the end of the “slider” the various pictures go through the “window”, so that children can take turns retelling the story to a partner.

I introduce the lesson by reading the story, then share my sample with the children.

We retell the tale together, using the picture prompts on the slider.

My students now know what’s expected of them, and are very excited to transition to making a “There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Rose” slider of their own.

As always, both color, as well as black & white patterns are included.

There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesFor a quick, easy & interesting way to assess comprehension, there's a “Let’s sequence the story” worksheet, where students color and trim the picture tiles then glue them in the correct order on their worksheet.

Use the teacher’s colorful copy as a whole group sequencing activity,  by passing the cards out to your students. 

When you get to that part in the story, the child with the matching card, comes up & places it on the ordinal number mat. (Use magnet or Velcro dots to adhere the cards).

After the story, I pass the cards out to different children for a final review.

Remember to grab that teachable moment to practice ordinal numbers as well.

BThere was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesoth the Slider & Wheel packets include a “Here’s What Happened…” writing prompt worksheet, as another way to check comprehension, plus practice sequential writing.

Use the colorful template to do this as a whole group activity with younger kiddos, discussing beginning, middle & end.

there was an old lady who swallowed a rose wheel craft, There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesFinally, the storytelling wheels are also a super-fun way for your students to practice the sequencing & retelling standards.

There are 3 wheel “cover” options to choose from.

there was an old lady who swallowed a rose wheel craft, There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesChoose your favorite, or give students a choice.

When everyone is done, practice telling “There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Rose” using the manipulative.

Simply turn the wheel & call on a child to explain what’s happening in that graphic.

there was an old lady who swallowed a rose wheel craft, There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesAfterwards, have students pick a partner and take turns retelling the story to each other.

Sometimes we do this with our older, reading buddies.

For more reinforcement, as well as another way to assess comprehension, I’ve also included 2, “color, cut & glue” puzzle worksheets.

there was an old lady who swallowed a rose wheel craft, There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesUse the two, full-color versions for an independent puzzle center, where children arrange the pieces on a 5-piece pie grid.

There is puzzle for the first half of the story, plus another puzzle for the second half of the tale. To make this center self-correcting, number the pieces on the back using two different colors, which will make sorting easy-peasy.

there was an old lady who swallowed a rose wheel craft, There was an old lady who swallowed a rose activities, valentine party ideas,  valentine stories, sequencing & retelling a story activitiesAnother super-fun thing for students to do is to play “Speed”.  Children pick a partner & race eachother to see who will be the first to complete their puzzle. 

Add to the fun by using a dice for the first puzzle. 

Whatever number a child rolls is the number that they put on their puzzle.

If they roll a 6 they lose their turn. 

When doing the second puzzle, children play with two dice, which will help practice simple addition.

rip tear valentine, valentines day party ideas, valentine cards to make, valentine craftsToday's featured FREEBIE also has to do with Valentine's Day.

It's a simple, (rip & tear) "I love you to pieces" valentine card, that's lots of fun for your kiddos, while being a great way to help strengthen their finger muscles.

It's perfect for your valentine party day, and is generic enough so you can use it for Mother's Day, Father's Day or Grandparents Day as well.

Me 3 2 2Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.

We just had 5 inches of snow dumped on us, so it's time to do a bit of shoveling.

Wishing you a toasty & warm week. 

Click this LINK, and come join the fun on Face Book for my exclusive FREEBIES & Monthly GIVEAWAYS.

Check out my educational Pinterest boards by clicking HERE.

 "The Giving of love, is an education in itself." -Eleanor Roosevelt

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