1-2-3 Come Do Some Fun Wind-Themed Activities With Me
Incorporating a variety of genre is one of our standards. It's difficult to cover separate units for all that's required, so I offer a variety of genres within each of my monthly-themed units.
I love poetry, particularly poems that rhyme, but finding age-level appropriate ones that match a theme, is not an easy task.
Since March is a very windy month here in the Midwest, I have a brief, wind-themed mini unit, that I toss in on the tail end of our kite unit. (No pun intended!)
With that in mind, I designed the Wind Tricks poetry packet to go along with my other wind-themed activities. I hope you find it helpful.
I came across this poem years ago, and even with the help of massive search engines, I still have not discovered the author.
I chose this poem because it's short, simple, incorporates rhyme and more than half the words that are in the poem, also appear on the Dolch word lists.
The packet includes:
An anchor-chart Wind Tricks poster-poem. Hang it up and read it to your class, then read as a whole group.
Six large (full-color) pocket chart cards, featuring each stanza. Use these for a whole group activity as well.
Using dry erase markers, call on children to correct beginning capitalization and add end punctuation.
I've also included a small set of matching pocket chart cards which fit on one page.
So that students can read and correct their own poem, I made a black and white "emergent reader" set of cards, which they can color, trim and collate into a booklet.
The packet also has 2 sizes of 34-mini word cards, using the words from the poem. (18 are Dolch Words.)
One of the ways you can use them is with the Mr. Windy envelope.
Pass the mini word cards out to students and then have them "feed" the Mr. Windy "Blow some words my way" envelope or use them to play the Windy Words game.
The Windy Words game is a bit goofy, but I'll try just about anything to get my kiddos excited about reading and writing.
No matter what grade I taught, from PK through college, my students always enjoyed my silly, but educational games.
Children make their own "Windy" by poking a straw through Mr. Windy's mouth. I used a red strip of paper and taped it to the table.
Adjust the game to suit the age of your students. Toss the word cards on the table, or leave them in a pile.
As a math extension, have each student count and then record on the “Tally Ho” sheet, how many words they blew across the line.
Use tally marks then add up a grand total of how many words the entire class blew over the line. (Recording data, using tally marks, as well as skip counting by 5s are all practiced.)
There are other uses for the cards too. Put them in alphabetical order; sort them by long and short vowels; or sort them by parts of speech.
If you have the time, and don't mind a messy, but awesome craftivity, reuse the Windy Word straws to make a "Windblown" Hair-Raising Portrait.
I found this adorable picture on Pinterest, with a broken link, but it's exactly what I had in mind. For easy clean up, lay newspaper on your worktable and use a cardboard box as a "security wall" to catch splatters.
Students can draw their own face on a sheet of white construction paper, or run off my template. Children add facial features and color their "head".
To make a "bad hair day doo" arrange a rainbow of colored plops of paint around the top of the head. (I use watered-down acrylics, because they are inexpensive, washable, and fast drying.)
Children use their straw to gently blow the paint in an upward direction to make "strands" of "hair".
Set aside to dry and later have children mount their creation on the top of the writing prompt: "I'm having a bad hair day when..." or something to do with wind or the Wind Tricks poem. They could also write the poem on the back or whatever words you want them to work on.
Since this is a rhyming poem, I also included some Rhyme Time activities for the words in the poem that rhyme with day, street, and dance, which include anchor-chart posters, featuring the alphabetical lists of the words that I thought of.
This is a great way to build vocabulary, and fits in nicely with your Daily 5 word work activities.
Finally, I included a "What is Genre?" explanation, with an emphasis on explaining the poetry genre. (Nice for giving your students some background.)
For more educational "pinspiration", free ideas, activities and crafts on my Pinterest boards, click on the link. I have one specifically for Windy March.
Thanks for visiting. Time to run. My 2-year-old grandson is coming to Nana's to play this morning. I think baking some cookies is in order.
Although he loves drinking with a straw and blowing bubbles, and truly enjoys craftivities with me, I'm not quite ready for a "mess-terpiece" today. Wishing you a delicious day filled with giggles.
"I can't change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination." -Jimmy Dean
1-2-3 Come Play Some Long E Word Games With Me
Word work and vocabulary building was part of my Y5's every day activities. Daily 5 came along and simplified or complicated things, and gave teachers something else to try and find "stuff" for.
To keep my students interested and semi enthusiastic about word work, I changed the theme of these activities each month, so although the skills were repetitive, there was variety because the theme was different. Doing this little adjustment was very successful and helped avoid tedium.
With that in mind, I wanted to create an activity with a November theme. When I taught kinders and first grade, we continued to practice vowels at this time, particularly "When two vowels go walking the first one usually does the talking." so I went in search of a symbol that I could use.
A sheave of wheat was pretty prominent and perfect for the ea vowel grouping. Some of my kiddos were often confused with that long E sound wanting to spell these words with an ee, so I decided to make up a list of words for both. Need, became needle and the haystack idea was also born.
The Haystack Howdy packet is a quick, easy and fun way to practice words with a long E vowel sound, which have the double ee or ea letters in the middle of the word.
The packet includes the Needle in a Haystack whole group file folder game, with 130 double ee "needle" word cards, plus an alphabetical list of the words in poster form.
The cards are small, with 22 on a page for easy printing. Choose the ones you want your kiddos to work on.
Print, laminate and trim the cards. Toss them into a container and have students choose 1 or 2. Using the list, ask for a word.
The child holding that card, shows it to the class, everyone reads it together, then they put the "needle" into the haystack.
To make the haystack, simply print off a copy, trim and glue to a file folder. (I've included 2 color options, plus one in black & white.)
Using an Exacto knife, cut a slit wide and long enough for the needle cards to be slipped through the slot.
Hold up the file folder, by putting a small basket in the back. The cards will drop through the slot and into the basket. Keep the cards in an envelope, in the folder and tuck into your file drawer.
The Sheaves of Wheat game works the same way, with 107 ea "wheat" word cards to choose from, plus an alphabetical list of those words.
There are plenty of other ways to use the cards as well. For writing practice or a Daily 5 activity, have students choose 3-6 cards and use those words to create sentences. Afterwards, have them select 10 cards to alphabetize.
If they are not familiar with a word, they can look it up and add it to their writing journal or student dictionary. Children can also work with a partner and play Memory Match, Slap, Speed etc. I've included a 4-page tip list of ideas.
For more teachable moments, there's also a background page about the idiom "needle in a haystack" as well as a definition page for the word sheaf.
Finally, whenever a nursery rhyme fit in with a particular theme, I'd plug it in, so I could also review rhyming and this genre.
I used to have an entire week for a nursery rhyme and fairy tale theme, but as standards became more demanding, I ran out of time. I'm sure you all can relate with "so much to do, so little time to do it in..."
Adding rhymes here and there, solved the problem. Because a haystack is featured in the Little Boy Blue nursery rhyme, I've included some activities for that in this packet.
There's a poster poem of the rhyme in black and white, as well as color, plus 8 pocket chart picture word cards, and a paper "strip" booklet for students to make.
I call these "strip" booklets because I fit anywhere from 5-8 "strips" on one page that students complete, trim and collate into a mini booklet.
My kiddos LOVED making these emergent readers that they could take home and practice with. Click on the link to view/download the Haystack Howdy packet.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.
This Nana is in serious need of some snuggle time, with her new grand baby Kaitlyn and little grandson Kaiden, so I'm off to visit my daughter. Wishing you a love-filled day.
"One machine can do the work of 50 ordinary men. However, no machine can do the work of one extraordinary man." - Elbert