1-2-3 Come Do Some Scarecrow Crafts With Me
I love doing a variety of scarecrow-themed activities in the fall, so I created this cute “Peekin’ Scarecrow” writing prompt craft.
Whenever I toss a bit of creative craftiness in with our writing, my students get all excited to get down to business.
I find that if one provides students with a variety of interesting, fun and thought-provoking writing prompts, you will have hit a motivating “hot button”.
With that in mind, I spent quite a bit of time thinking up 42 engaging prompts, all with a scarecrow in mind.
For simple & quick printing, the writing prompt pattern provides 6 prompts on a one-page template.
TIP: Whenever I need to pre-cut things for my kiddos as a time saver, I stack at least 3 pages then staple around the edges.
After cutting, toss the "prompt cards" into a basket.
This prompt is then glued to their completed project.
There are 5 different, writing prompt worksheets for students to compose their final draft on.
So that I have a pretty even amount, and a nice variety for my display. I assign half my students to glue their writing horizontally and the other half vertically.
For any of our writing assigments, I have students make a first & final draft.
To help them, I've included a writing rubric, which students can use as a checklist, before they complete their final draft.
Look closely & you will see that I've added some deeper shading with crayons, as well as some "stitch marks" to the nose, heart cheek & along the edges of the face & hat.
Another way to add some extra pizzazz, is by putting a few sheets of yellow construction paper into a shredder.
My kiddos absolutely LOVED adding "hay hair", which is a great fine motor skill that will help strengthen finger muscles, and increase dexterity.
Fold the petals up for some added dimension.
As you can see by my samples, completed projects turn out so cute!
I've also included 2 posters to enhance your display.
So that teachers can quickly & easily make an example to share, I've also made templates for 3, of my completed writing prompts.
Sharing an example, not only helps easily explain what you want your students to do, but also gets them excited to make one of their own.
As with all of my packets, there are clear directions, with helpful tips & photographs.
Use them for a variety of games.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for stopping by.
It's started snowing quite heavily this moring here in Michigan.
Since it's only the frist week of November, I am so not ready for the craziness that winter weather creates.
That said, it is quite lovely, and the quiet of the woods, frosted in sparkling white is quite peaceful.
"In teaching others, we teach ourselves." -Proverb
1-2-3 Come Do Some Quick,Halloween Activities With Me
Halloween happens to be on a Monday this year, so some schools will be celebrating on Friday, others waiting 'til the real day.
Since our party day is Friday, I still wanted to have some quick, easy and educationally fun Halloween-themed activities for Monday, so I whipped together a pumpkin glyph, writing prompt and class book. They are featured on the blog, along with today's FREEBIE.
First up is the pumpkin glyph. No matter what grade I taught, my students absolutely LOVED making glyphs.
They are a quick, easy & interesting way to practice and assess listening and following directions. This pumpkin glyph will also review some 2D shapes as well.
Since this is one of my report card standards, glyphs also provide a "hard copy" to use as proof that a child does or doesn't listen & follow directions.
Completed projects make an adorable bulletin board, as each one will be different!
I've included 2 posters for the center of your glyph display.
Glyphs are also an interesting way to get to know your students. The packet also includes a few posters for explaining things so even PK students can make one.
The "Positive-Negative Writing Prompt Pumpkin" also makes an awesome bulletin board or hallway wall display.
The controversy of Halloween, makes a nice comparison-contrast writing activity, where students list the positive aspects of Halloween that they like, as well as the negative ones that they don't care for.
Whenever I include a bit of hands-on craftiness to a lesson, I instantly have my students' attention; and they can't wait to get down to the business of writing.
So as a topper for their completed October writing prompt, children use an art form fittingly called: "positive-negative" and create a Jack-O-Lantern with my easy-peasy pattern.
To add some variety to your display, I've included 5 writing prompt worksheet options with different Halloween-themed graphics and fonts for your students to choose from.
PK teachers can do this as a whole-group discussion activity, where students give their opinion and you jot down their answers on one of the writing prompt worksheets, then each child can make a positive-negative pumpkin, which can be scattered around the prompt.
Finally, if your kiddos are like mine, they are constantly talking about what costume they are going to wear for Halloween. I take advantage of their excitement and enthusiasm by having them make a costume class book.
They are super-excited to get down to the business of illustrating their own page, which is a great activity for the week of Halloween, or even on party day for something educationally fun to help channel all of that energy.
I’ve included 2, full color cover options to choose from, as well as 3 different page designs. (See PREVIEW).
There’s a black and white pattern for your students, as well as templates in color, so that you can easily make a sample to share to help explain things, then contribute your costume page to the book too.
On party day I snap everyone’s picture, then add their photograph to our book as well.
Class-made books are one of my students’ favorites in our classroom library; they are terrific to share during parent-teacher conferences too. Besides the book, I’ve also included 2 song posters.
I enjoy making up songs to familiar tunes. One is “Trick or Treat” to the tune of “Are You Sleeping Brother John?” the other is “What Costume Will You Wear” to the tune of “Farmer in the Dell”.
Today's featured FREEBIE is a collection of tried and true Halloween party games that my students really enjoy. I call the packet "Ready-Set-Ghost!"
Click on the link or photo to grab your copy and let the spooktacular fun begin!
Well that's it for today... Gotta dash, as there are treat bags yet to make for the neighborhood children. We don't have that many, so I like to make something extra special.
Wishing you a very Happy Howling Halloween!
"There is magic in the night when pumpkins glow by moonlight!" -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do Some Pumpkin-Themed 2D Shape Activities With Me
Since pumpkins are carved with all sorts of shapely features, I thought it would be fun to make some "pumpkin eye" activities to practice 2D shapes. Today's blog features my "just finished" packet, along with today's featured FREEBIE.
The packet includes:
* 2 sets of picture cards featuring pumpkins with the various shaped eyes: circle, oval, rectangle, square, triangle, hexagon, pentagon, octagon, rhombus, trapezoid, heart and star.
These can be used as flashcards or for Memory Match, or "I Have; Who Has?" games.
* There’s also an emergent reader craftivity: “Pumpkin Eyes", with 3 options:
* One option features pages with simple sentences using words from the Dolch lists, especially pronouns: “My pumpkin has rectangle eyes.” There is space underneath for students to draw that shape.
* Option 2 includes the sentences as well as the shapes. The 3rd option, for little ones, doesn’t have sentences, just the picture shapes for them to color.
Students cut the pages and staple the "Pumpkin Eyes" booklet to the eye-section of their pumpkin.
* I’ve also included a whole group chant written on a poster. Read and point to the words on it:
“Oh my! We’re wise. We spy a pumpkin with ____________ eyes!”
When you get to the blank, place a shape word card on the poster.
To start the game, pass the various shaped eye cards out to your students. The child holding the called-for shape, puts that eye-card on the pumpkin poster.
Continue the chant ’til you have used all of the shape word cards.
My Y5s absolutely LOVE practicing shapes this way.
* Make an extra set to be used as an independent center. Children place the shape word above the pumpkin, then put the matching eyes on. To make this self-checking, draw the shape on the back of the word card.
* This activity can also be used as a fun tool for individually assessing 2D shapes.
* Afterwards, graph which pumpkin eyes everyone liked the best using the “Graphing Time” poster.
* Another fun way to whole-group assess 2D shapes, is by making a “Pumpkin Eyes” slider craft.
There are 2 pumpkin patterns to choose from, as well as two slider strip options featuring the various 2D shapes.
* I’ve also included 2 pumpkin patterns where students draw a shapely face, which makes for a sweet bulletin board.
Place the “Welcome to our patch” poster in the center of your display. This poster is today's FREEBIE. Click on the link to grab your copy.
* Finally, a great “go along” story to read with these activities is Denise Fleming’s “Pumpkin Eye”.
The story is about all of the things the pumpkin’s eyes see on Halloween, so I’ve included a class-made book activity as well.
Class books are wonderful to share at Parent-Teacher Conferences.
Each child completes the prompt: “My pumpkin’s eyes are ___________. (shape) He sees ____________________.
Students draw those shaped eyes on the pumpkin, then illustrate their page of what their pumpkin saw. Collect the pages, collate, then add the cover.
Well that's it for today. Thanks for popping in.
It's time to put my "Nana hat" on, as I'm watching two of my favorite little "punkins" today. Wishing you giggles galore and lots of warm snuggly hugs.
"There's nothing quite like a grandchild to put a smile on your face, a lump in your throat, and a warm, loving feeling in your heart." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Do Some Writing Craftivities With Me
The key to getting children motivated to write, is simply giving them something exciting and fun to tease their imaginations and get the creative juices flowing.
Pumpkins in the News does that. It's my latest, 29-page, writing prompt-emergent reader packet.
I’ve included 2 class-made books: The Case of the Missing Pumpkins, as well as Our Class Pumpkins in the News.
To get the pumpkin rolling, there’s a “What can you do with a pumpkin?” poster, which includes two graphing extensions to cover more standards.
Children will readily share that you can eat and carve them, but are they aware that you can grow a record-breaking giant pumpkin, catapult them through the air, or turn them into a boat and sail them in a regatta?
All of these are popular contests and make headlines in the news.
I’ve included links to awesome videos to whet everyone’s writing appetites.
On the crazy creative side, how about the discovery of an alien pumpkin, or a pumpkin that could talk or grant 3 wishes?
Trust me, your kiddos will WANT to get right down to the business of writing! Woo hoo.
The crafty part of the project is a newsprint pumpkin.
Coloring newspaper with crayons or markers, creates a super-interesting and awesome look.
Completed projects look amazing swirling & twirling from the ceiling. I've included several "header" cards to choose from, as a title for your display.
Little ones can search for all of the letter Pp’s and circle them.
I’ve also included several worksheets for more letter Pp practice.
Toss in a bit of shape review, with the pumpkin’s facial features, and practice spelling names via his smile.
There's also a pattern with 12-on-a-page to make an Itty Bitty one. It's packed with plenty of Dolch sight words.
If you don't include it with the emergent reader, you could give them to your kiddos on party day.
They are today's featured FREEBIE. Click on the link to grab a copy in both black & white as well as color.
Well that's it for now. Thanks for stopping by. It's my sincere hope that your own little "punkins" enjoy these craftivities. It's a gorgeous 70 degrees today; the leaves are finally starting to turn.
The fresh air floating in from my window is beckoning me to come play. I shall succumb. Wishing you a peaceful day.
"I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion." - Henry David Thoreau
1-2-3 Come Make A Pumpkin Writing Prompt Craftivity With Me
With all of the pros and cons about Halloween and the hype about the negative versus the positive aspects of the holiday, I thought this controversy would make an interesting October writing prompt that even younger students could manage. This would be great for your writing block or Daily 5 writing portion on Halloween day, which tends to be a bit crazy.
As a whole group, brainstorm what things students like about Halloween and list them on the board. Then discuss the negative aspects of the holiday and things that they don't like about Halloween. Write those on the board as well.
The lists can help students with spelling, as well as deciding what things they want to include in their own writing prompt.
I've always been intriqued by the positive negative aspects of art, and the fun things you can create around that concept.
With that in mind, I thought the perfect craft to use as a topper for this writing prompt, would be a positive negative pumpkin. Click on the link to grab your FREEBIE.
Here's how to make one:
Run the pumpkin template off on orange construction paper. I've put two pumpkins on a page for qucik printing, so you'll need to cut them in half using a paper cutter.
Likewise, cut black construction paper in half as well. Students lay their 1/2 sheet of black construction paper underneath their orange paper pumpkin half, and then cut out 2 pumpkin halves at the same time. One will be orange; the other black.
When they are done, they glue a half sheet of black construction paper onto a whole sheet of orange construction paper.
Now glue the orange pumpkin on top of the black construction paper side, and the black pumpkin on the orange construction paper side, so that the two pumpkins are joined together, making a positive and negative pumpkin picture.
Finally, students glue their writing prompt underneath. I've included a completed sample if you want to use mine to make an example to share with your kiddos.
You could do this with other Halloween themed objects as well. I found this monster version over at In The Art Room, when I Googled positive negative art samples. Instead of using my pumpkin pattern, students could also create a Jack-O-Lantern of their own.
While doing research, I found a helpful art site. For more information about positive-negative art click on the link.
There's a short video clip explaining the positive negative art form, plus some cool samples like this one. Do you see a vase or two profiles?
Thanks for visiting today. Since it's not too brisk out, I'm off to do a bit of winterizing in my garden. Too much for one day, but slow and sure wins the race. Wishing you an energizing day.
"Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body." -- Joseph Addison
1-2-3 Come Do Some Fall Writing With Me!
While I was working on the scarecrow packets, it crossed my mind that scarecrows are really not all that scarey? I thought of the scarecrow in The Wizard of Oz who wanted a brain, and I wondered if a scarecrow had one, what would he say? My brain needs a shut off button, so one idea led to another, 'til I decided to turn all of these thoughts into interesting writing prompts with a scarecrow character.
Getting students excited about writing, and WANTING to write, can be difficult. A teacher announcing that "It's time to write." is often followed by a lot of groaning, as if you had asked students to whine in unison.
To get my students enthusiastic about writing I'd dream up creative and interesting writing prompts to jump start their brains.
Instead of informing students that it's time to write, ask them: "If you were a scarecrow what would you want to wear?" or "Do you think scarecrows are scarey? If you were the farmer, how could you make a scarecrow scarier?"
Watch all the hands shoot up. With lots of enthusiasm say: "Great! Now choose one of these scarecrow writing prompts and tell me your thoughts in detail." Reveal the prompts listed on the board and have students choose which one they are most "excited" about. My kiddo's couldn't wait to get started. Woo Hoo!
Click on the link to view/download the 6 Scarecrow Writing Prompts
Thanks for visiting today. I design and blog daily, so I hope you can stop by tomorrow to check out the newest FREEBIES hot off my computer. Feel free to PIN away. I think sharing is so important. To ensure that other "pinners" return to THIS blog article, click on the green title at the top; it will turn black, now click on the "Pin it" button on the menu bar. If you'd like to see all the creative-educational items that I pin, click on the heart to the right of the blog. I have an entire board of just scarecrow and writing activities.
"It's always better to try and fail, than fail to try." -Unknown
1-2-3 Come Make A Keepsake With Me!
I’m Surviving In School is a quick, easy and fun way to get students to practice their writing skills.
Graphic organizers are extremely beneficial for visual learners and help students organize their thoughts and think succinctly. These mini-writing prompts are more do-able and less intimidating. Doing a page at the end of each month, is a terrific Daily 5 activity, or independent writing center. Alphabetize the booklets and number them, so students can quickly and easily find theirs to work on. These are a great addition to a portfolio or file, to share with parents, during conferences, as they should show marked improvements along the way. Completed books make an outstanding keepsake.
Encourage students to use proper capitalization, punctuation, spaces, adjectives etc. and you have covered a lot of Common Core State Standards as well. There’s a generic cover as well as covers for preschool through 6th grade. Define what an adjective is and why using describing words are important. Pass out markers and have students write adjectives that describe themselves, in each bubble box on their cover. Explain that they can add more words as the year progresses. To make this extra special, have students glue their school picture inside the bus. You may want to make a booklet yourself, to use as an example to help explain things each month. Students really enjoy learning about their teacher.
The pages are geared from easy to more difficult as students advance. Later, explain to them that instead of just a list, you want them to write sentences. You can also have them start with the header, so that they are working on a complete sentence with proper capitalization, instead of just answering the topic. i.e. Favorite food: My favorite food is pizza. Later, have them expand their thoughts even more, by explaining why and adding adjectives: i.e. My favorite junk food is pizza, because I like spicy pepperoni.
To get in more fine motor practice and add some pizzazz to the pages, have students use colored markers, pencils and crayons. In the Me... section, students practice writing their name and drawing a self-portrait. This is especially important for preschool and kindergarten students. In the beginning, younger kiddo’s can draw a picture of how they feel, with a happy or sad (etc.) face. They will be limited to 1-word answers in the boxes. You can also opt to have students do these 1-on-1 with a helper, who writes down their answers, or send a page home as homework to be returned in a week.
Click on the link to view/download the I'm Surviving School, monthly-writing prompt booklet. If you're looking for another fun keepsake book, that students can write in monthly, check out The Very Hungry Student. Children write what they learned each month. Of course they are still hungry for more, so they move on to the next month... The rhyming text makes it a fun read-aloud. There's a page in the back for students' autographs. It's also a nice way to review the names of the months and a super way to show progress/improvement to parents. Click on the link to view/download The Very Hungry Student.
I also have an entire year's worth of writing prompts. Each month's writing prompts are based on popular stuff that's going on during that time frame. Click on the link to view/download the Monthly Writing Prompts packet.
Thanks for visiting today. Feel free to PIN away. To ensure that "pinners" return to THIS blog article, click on the green title at the top; it will turn black, now click on the "Pin it" button located on my menu bar. If you'd like to take a look at all of the awesome educational items I spend way too much time pinning, click on the big heart to the right of the blog.
"Millions saw the apple fall, but Newton asked why!" -Bernard Baruch
Happy Columbus Day!
It's Fire Safety Month here’s the scenario:
It’s National Clock Month Choose One:
It's National Bat Appreciation Month:
I’m In A Spin…
Make Mine Pepperoni:
October 21st is Reptile Awareness Day:
Oh don’t be such a GROUCH!
Frankenstein Friday: is October 28th. Here's the scenario: You too, are a "mad scientist" like Dr. Frankenstein. You have just created a monster as well! What does he/she look like? Have you named your monster? Describe your monster and then draw a picture of it.
Have some fun with the DICTIONARY
I Dare - double dare you to do something crazy!
And The Light Goes On…
Happy Bosses Day!
National Pet Peeve Week is in October:
Spider-iffic Spiders-NOT! Ugh!
October 31st is National Knock-Knock Joke Day: What's your favorite knock-knock joke? Do you like telling jokes? Do you think "laughter is the best medicine?"
Put a little MAGIC in your life!
October 31st is National Magic Day. If you had magical powers what would you do to make your school a better place to be? How would having these powers change your life? What kind of powers would you have?