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Friday, April 27, 2012

The Caterpillar and the Polliwog

"The Caterpillar and the Polliwog" by Jack Kent
The Caterpillar and the Polliwog by Jack Kent is perfect for spring time.  I read the story several times using background music ("Waterfall Sounds - The Soothing Sounds of Ponds and Waterfalls" by Nature Sounds & Backgrounds).  The sounds really help the children to imagine that they are actually at a pond.  On the track you can hear insects, frogs, birds, water splashing, etc.  I use the props (see below) to retell the story and to give every child in my class a part to play.  I made multiples of some animals (such as fish and birds) so that I could bring the total up to 20.  Of course, you could always print extra props as needed.  Beside the sound effects, I place a large, blue tablecloth (as a "pond") on the rug and the children sit around it in a circle.  I fill a spray bottle with water and occasionally spray the children to heighten the experience of being at a pond.

The video for this (from "Owl Moon and Other Stories" by Children's Circle) is so adorable!  My children really loved watching the polliwog turn into a frog as he was waiting to see what would emerge from the chrysalis.  The thing I like the most about this video and book is that the characters have real personalities.  The polliwog is so curious, and the caterpillar is sort of prideful, and a little braggy.  The snail is indifferent, while the fish is very wise and confident.  When my children acted out the story, they really captured these traits.

Story Props Caterpillar and Polliwog

This guided reading book, which I just found in my files, matches really well with this lesson.  Enjoy, and let me know what you think!

Frog Life Cycle Book

As I was shopping at Michael's Art & Craft a few days ago, I found some really neat punchers to make butterfly and flower shapes from construction paper.  They worked great as manipulatives to make patterns, and then the students glued them onto sentence strips.  Next, I made this butterfly strip as a way to quickly assess whether my children understand how to make a pattern.
Pattern Butterfly Long

This post would not be complete if I didn't mention a few songs to go along with the butterfly and frog activities.  "Butterfly Addition" and "Butterfly Subtraction" by Miss Jenny work really well with these butterfly headbands that I found at Target for just a dollar each.  Can you believe that my kids were mad today if they didn't get a chance to be the butterfly?  I told them that they would definitely get a turn on Monday.

Butterfly Song Activity

3 comments:

  1. Thanks for stopping by my blog! I love your ideas!

    learnplayandhavefun.blogspot.com

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  2. Hey Sharon! I'm your newest follower! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

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  3. These are great! I love the headbands...too cute. =)
    Bobbie

    The Daily Cupcake…A Kindergarten Blog

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