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