1-2-3 Come Do Some Groundhog Activities With Me
I do a variety of groundhog-themed activities during the week of Groundhog Day.
One day (February 2nd) is simply not enough time to take a look at these interesting animals, which provide a way for me to get in a bit of science, non-fiction reading, as well as use them as a fun theme for word work (GR blend, compound words) plus math centers, where we count groundhogs, do puzzles, and practice graphing (Will he or won't he see his shadow?) predictions.
With that in mind, I designed two groundhog “flip the flap for facts” booklets. One includes fun facts about groundhogs, the other has interesting information about Groundhog Day. First up, is the background information about Groundhogs.
Don’t know anything about groundhogs? No worries. I’ve done tons of research so you don’t have to.
Simply make the teacher’s edition booklet, familiarize yourself with whatever facts you want to share, then read them to your students.
I categorized simple and interesting information into: characteristics, habitat, home, diet, hibernation, young, predators & behavior.
There are 2 "flip up" pages to a one-page template for easy printing.
Besides the teacher’s edition, there are blank page patterns so you can program them however you want, as well as pages with the category headers, so that students have a guide for their research and written answers.
I purposely did not number any pages, so that you can choose which topics you want your students to explore.
The booklet provides a simple and fun way to introduce research and writing a report, which can be done individually, with a partner, or in a small group of four.
The cover (head of the groundhog) is run off on tan construction paper. Students add highlights and shading with crayons. The base or back cover of the booklet is printed on card stock.
The pages are trimmed and just the top "glue tab" is glued to the base of the booklet. When all of the pages have been collated, the cover is glued down on top of the base, so that the "mouth" portion of the groundhog "flips up" to reveal the informational pages underneath. Again you have the option to choose which pages you want your students to include.
There are just 8 pages to do independently, (if you choose all of the categories) which can also be divided into a 4-page partner assignment, or a 2-page small group activity; allowing you to do the project in a short amount of time.
The groundhog booklet can be done in class during your writing/reading block, or be finished as homework then returned. Be sure and check out the non-fiction groundhog books your school library may have or do a bit of research with your students, during your computer lab time.
The packet is also appropriate for younger students, as I’ve included a “fun fact” worksheet for little ones to color, then write down a favorite fact that they learned from you reading the informational teacher’s edition. As always, I've included completed samples for you to share with your kiddos to help explain things.
Completed projects make a cute February bulletin board. The booklets can also be displayed.
I’ve included 12 real photographs of groundhogs too. (Two-on-a-page for easy printing). Use them to introduce your lesson, then scatter them around your students’ work.
There’s a “Learning About Groundhogs” poster for the center of your display as well.
The other "flip for facts" booklet features information specifically about Groundhog DAY, so if you’re looking for a little something to share with your students, I think you’ll enjoy this craftivity.
It can be a simple card for little ones to make. There are 3 “Happy Groundhog Day!” greeting options, which are revealed when you flip the legs of the groundhog cover up.
You can also make a “Flip the Flap For Facts” booklet, with interesting information about Groundhog DAY.
Make your teacher booklet and read it to little ones so they learn a bit about Groundhog Day, then have them transition to making the card.
There are also 2 black and white versions so students can make their own booklet. So that you can differentiate your lessons, I’ve included an emergent reader option, packed with lots of Dolch sight words, as well as a preschool “trace the word & color the pictures” version.
Besides the 3 booklets and card, I’ve also included a “Fun Fact” worksheet.
Use this after you read your booklet to check comprehension. Children color the groundhog then jot down an interesting fact that they learned, or their favorite one.
Completed projects make a cute February bulletin board. I’ve included a “Groundhog Day Fun!” poster for the center of your display.
There are also 2 graphing extensions to go along with the optional "question" pages.
Because Canada also celebrates Groundhog Day on February 2nd, I included 2 pages with the alternate “colour” spelling, as well as a Venn diagram activity comparing our Phil with their Will, plus a photograph poster featuring both groundhogs. (Willie is an albino groundhog, so grab that teachable moment to teach a new vocabulary word.)
There are several map worksheets of both countries as well. If you studied Canada during your “Christmas Around the World” travels, this is a fun way to revisit those lessons.
So....you've covered non-fiction reading, a bit of science, some writing a dash of math, plus a smidge of geography all with one craftivity, which you can feature on an easy-peasy bulletin board!
Woo hoo for you!
Today's featured FREEBIE also has a groundhog theme and is titled: Groundhog Slappin' Games. (I was inspired by the "Whack-a-Mole" arcade game, because the critter that pops up reminded me of a groundhog poking his head out of his burrow.) The packet is a whopping 60 pages long!
Your students will really enjoy playing these games, as they slap a variety of groundhog cards, with a flyswatter, to show that they know specific standards. This is a super-fun, quick and easy way to whole-group assess as well.
Students practice recognizing skip counted numbers, shapes, colors, groundhog-related words, (there are 54!) + upper and lowercase letters.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by. If you can believe it, it has started to snow here in Michigan.
Although it's quite lovely, and covers up the ugly dirt and dead things, I am quite tired of winter and ready for the warmth of sunshine-filled days.
If a groundhog can truly predict an early spring, here's hoping he does NOT see his shadow. Wishing you a lovely day.
"No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do Some Groundhog Day Activities With Me
Do you read ”Who Will See Their Shadow This Year?” by Jerry Pallotta?
It’s one of my students’ favorite Groundhog Day stories and perfect for practicing the “sequencing and retelling a story” standards.
With that in mind, I designed this quick, easy and fun ”Who Will See Their Shadow?” “slider” craftivity, which will help your students retell the story in chronological order.
The gist: A variety of animals are sick of winter and anxious for spring. Since the groundhog is sleeping, they wonder if they can make it come sooner by seeing their shadows.
Each one takes a turn, causing all kinds of weather from a hurricane to a tornado, which makes this a great story to review all kinds of weather with your kiddos as well.
There are 3 outside slider options to choose from. Pick your favorite or give children a choice.
There are also 2 slider strip options: one with just the animal graphics, and the other with the animals and their weather word.
For example, when the chicken saw her shadow it rained; when the polar bear saw his shadow there was a blizzard.
Students color the animals on the “slider strip” then cut and glue it together.
As they pull on the end of the “slider-strip” the various animal characters go through the “window”, so that children can take turns retelling the story to a partner or reading buddy, then take their craftivity home to share with their family, once again practicing these standards.
Even if you don't have time for everyone to make a slider, make one for yourself, as it's a great tool for reviewing a story.
I introduce the lesson by reading the book ”Who Will See Their Shadow?”, then share my completed "slider craft” with my students.
So that you can quickly, and easily make an example, I’ve included full-color patterns.
After I read the story, we retell the tale together, using the picture prompts on my slider.
I have them guess which animal character they think comes next, before I pull the picture through the “window”.
My students now know what’s expected of them, and are very excited to transition to making a “Shadow” storytelling slider of their own.
Storytelling sliders are also an easy & interesting way to assess comprehension.
I’ve included a “Let’s sequence the story” activity for this, where students color and trim the picture “windows” then glue them in the correct order on their worksheet.
There’s also a, “Here’s What Happened…” writing prompt worksheet, (BW & color) as another way to check comprehension, plus practice sequential writing, hopefully using a variety of ordinal numbers and other transitions.
Today's featured FREEBIE also has a Groundhog theme.
Click the link for the quick, easy & fun "Fickle Phil" Groundhog Day lunch bag craft.
Well that's it for now. Thanks for stopping by. I hear the snowplows zipping up and down the roads, sure wouldn't want that "way too early" morning job.
Wishing you a prosperous day.
"Laughter is the sun that drives winter from the human face." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Play Some Groundhog Games With Me
Slip Slappin' Away....
Have you ever been to an arcade and played the game where you hold a hammer and wait for that crazy furry little critter to emerge and then try and bang him on the head?
That game led me to thinking up a slapping game you could incorporate in your Groundhog Day activities. My Y5's couldn't wait for their turn to slap a groundhog card with a flyswatter.
So why would they slap him? To recite answers: like letters, shapes, numbers and skip counted sequences! I thought this would not only be a great time for my students, but a terrific way to review lots of report card standards, and a super easy way for me to whole-group assess at the same time! Click on the link to view/download the Groundhog Day Slappin' Games
The packet includes slapping cards for 54 words that are related to groundhogs and Groundhog Day. I've included a traceable word strip on the bottom of each card for students to practice writing.
Make an extra set, laminate and cut the traceable word off to make puzzles. There's a 2-page tip list of ideas for the word cards, plus I've included a cover for them, so students can make "Itty Bitty" word books.
As a Daily 5 word work activity, have students arrange the words in alphabetical order. There's also a cover for students to make a Groundhog Day Word Dictionary.
There's a set of groundhog alphabet cards showing both the upper and lowercase letters together, and then sets for separate upper and lowercase letters. These are great for Memory Match of "I Have; Who Has?" games.
So you can review colors, there's a set of cards for traceable color words as well as 2 different kinds of groundhogs that your kiddos can color, so there's a groundhog to match each color word.
Traceable number cards to 10, as well as sets of skip counting cards by 2's, 3's, 5's, and 10's are also included.
My personal favorite is the "I spy a shape" groundhog cards.
There is a card for the star as well as the heart, because I know some preschool teachers also cover those shapes, plus a set of cards that don't have the groundhog on them, so that you can make more games, or use them after Groundhog Day is a distant memory.
These too have matching traceable word cards. All sets include blank cards so you can program with whatever you'd like, such as addition and subtraction equations, spelling words, CVC words etc. (So many possibilities; so little time!)
Here's what you do:
I hope you'll have lots of fun slapping these groundhogs! Enjoy your day! Click on the link to print/view the Groundhog Slap Game cards. Feel free to PIN away.
"Education is learning what you didn't even know you didn't know!" -Daniel Boorstin
What are you doing for Groundhog Day? You can start today by making this educational and interactive bulletin board. Or make this a huge wall display in your hallway and get other students and passersby excited and involved. Click on the link at the end of the list to print/view all of the Groundhog Day bulletin board templates.
On the left is a photo of a small construction paper placement picture I made, so you can get an idea of the way things are laid out.
I hope you have a groundhog great time with these activities!
As always, I'd enjoy hearing from you. firstname.lastname@example.org