1-2-3 Come Do Some Spider Activities With Me
Do you read Eric Carle's "The Very Busy Spider"? It's one of my students' favorite spider stories.
I introduce the story, and grab my students' attention with this quick, easy and fun scissor activity. As my kiddos are gathered on the carpet waiting for me to start reading, I begin cutting out a spider.
Since it’s folded, you can’t easily tell what I’m cutting. Invariably a student will ask “What are you doing?” To which I reply “I’m very busy cutting. Can you guess what I’m making?”
When I’m done, I slowly open the paper to reveal the very busy spider. After reading the story, I pick a name stick and give the spider to a child who was “very busy" listening.
After you’ve made your own, you can decide if this is an appropriate, whole group activity for your students. I've included a shaded pattern so it's easy to recognize what areas to cut out. There's also a full-bodied "color me" spider for little ones.
Completed projects look awesome glued to a square of brightly colored construction paper, then scattered on a bulletin board.
For a splash of 3D pizzazz, add some of those “pull apart” spider webs to each corner.
After reading the story, we retell the tale together using the picture prompts on my "spider slider". I have them guess which 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 "spider slider" of their own.
So that you can quickly and easily make an example, I’ve included a full-color slider pattern, as well as the black & white version for your students.
A completed orb spider web, as well as a corner spider web with the very busy spider dangling as he weaves.
Children color the story characters on the “slider strip” then cut and glue it together.
As they pull on the end of the “slider” the various pictures go through the “web window”, so that children can take turns retelling the story to a partner or reading buddy, then take their spider slider home to share with their family, once again practicing these standards.
To assess comprehension, I’ve included a “sequence the story” worksheet, where students color and trim the picture “windows” then glue them in the correct order on the blank worksheet.
There's also a “Here’s What Happened…” writing prompt worksheet, as another way to check comprehension plus practice sequential writing, hopefully using a variety of ordinal numbers or other transitions.
Another quick, easy and fun way to review the story, is with my 23, “Very Busy Spider” fix the sentence cards, which will also check comprehension and practice capitalization and end punctuation.
Read the cards together as a whole group to practice a lot of Dolch sight words.
Choose a student to come up and using a dry erase marker, circle letters that should be capitalized and then add end punctuation. (period, question mark & exclamation point).
For more practice, as an individual activity, have students choose X number of mini cards and rewrite the sentences correctly on the worksheet provided.
I continue the "Very Busy Spider" theme for our Daily 5 writing block, where my kiddos contribute a page for our class-made book "The Very Busy Students and Their Spiders".
There’s a "trace & write" template for younger kiddos, as well as a pattern page for older students to fill in the blanks:
“My spider was very busy ___________. As for me, most of the time I’m busy _____________.”
Children complete the prompt and illustrate their page. You collect, collate and add the cover.
I’ve included a completed sample to help clarify what you want your students to do.
When you share the story with the class, each student can come up and read their page.
The parents really enjoy reading our class-made books during parent-teacher conferences.
I mixed Elmer's glue with white paint. A black construction paper circle is placed in a metal cake pan and a dollop of the paint-glue is put in the middle and a marble is placed on top. Students manuever the pan to "spin" a web.
When they are happy with the results, they sprinkle opalescent or silver glitter on their creation, and can pick a plastic fly or spider to squish in the center.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by. It continues to be windy mixed with a misty rain; perfect weather to tackle my too long "to do" list.
Wishing you a stress-free and productive day.
"When life gives you rainy days, wear cute boots and jump in the puddles." -Unknown