The concept of more and less shows up in our math program right around this time of year and our kids struggled with this so much. So I tried to make it more concrete for them and using Thanksgiving graphics to convince them it was so much fun. This is perfect to do in collaborative groups to meet CCSS standards so I am showing this to my kinder teachers.
These are my Thanksgiving retelling cards that I use in a pocket chart to build a flow map of the story. I practice it with the kids for several days and then move on to the bracelet activity that Dr. Jean taught me, right before they leave for vacation. Click here for my cards.
Please try this pumpkin activity if you have never done this.
1. Scoop out the pumpkin but leave the seeds in the bottom.
2. Add soil to the pumpkin, filling it to the top.
3. Water it and leave it in the sun.
4. It will grow very quickly and your students can use a science journal to record
the results. It was a huge hit in my room.
This is not my idea. I found it on another blog called Growing In Pre- K. You can see her fabulous version here. Can you think of a better way to teach the life cycle of a pumpkin? My teaching friends did this for the first time this year and adored this project.
I have used the retelling bracelet that Dr. Jean created for many years now. However, I found that my English Language learners needed more support because the language of the story is so demanding. Finally, about six years ago I simplified the language a bit, created the flow map cards to practice the story whole group, and came up with a little strip book to support their learning. You can find it here.Why was this such a big hit? My kids could go home and tell the story to their parents at their own Thanksgiving table and feel so successful. A big shout out goes to my friend Dr. Jean who understands young children and their developmental needs better than anyone I know! Visit her blog if you are a kindergarten teacher and you will truly learn from her.
She has a more difficult version for first grade or for students who can handle more complex language.
Finally, these are packets I have created to support their learning at this time of the year. In Turkey Leftovers I have included an emergent reader that is a poem that you can also sing and is precious. Sparkle Readers #5 have a turkey reader about the food we eat at our Thanksgiving meal and focuses on beginning sounds. These are all at my TpT store and at Teachers Notebook. They can be used after vacation too as you get ready for your winter curriculum. Click here for T is for Turkey.
This is a card I created this year for students to make. They pick out the pictures that reflect what they are grateful for. I love the great conversations you can have around this! I think it is so important that we stop and remind each other of how grateful we are for all that we are blessed with. I have posted this before but if you still want to grab it you can find it here.
I love teaching about this holiday, making the costumes, cooking cranberries, creating pasta necklaces and all the other projects. What are some of your favorite activities to do?
I got this idea off of Pinterest and completed the whole thing in just a couple of hours. I sent the Hubs out to find Bugles and Runts and he finally had to look on the internet for them. Wal-mart has these but ran out so he went to Walgreen's and hit it big. The man was my hero and they were so cute. I brought them to school on Friday and was super popular that day! Hint: bring treats to work to feel the love. Here is a set of these labels so you can be everyone's favorite teacher. Click here.
Have a wonderful holiday with your family. It is so well deserved.