Video segment about me, by the school district

Monday, October 1, 2012

Autumn Activities

I can't believe it's October 1st!  Fall is my favorite season, and I think it's really important to celebrate the change of the seasons with my students.  So I read all of the books in the carousel above, plus Fall, Leaves, Fall which is a great large-size book, but Amazon did not have a picture of it.  I want to share what I did for Leaf Man, because some of my children who normally don't like to do seat work were really motivated by this activity.  We read Leaf Man, of course.  Then I had little pieces of paper cut out in red, yellow, orange, green and brown so that the students could make their own leaf man pictures.  I hung the originals in the hallway, but I also wanted to make a class book so that students could practice reading the sentence frame "My leaf man is a ______," and so that they could see their own writing.  If you're interested, take a peek:
Our Leaf Man Book

I've been working a lot on math plans lately, to match the Common Core standards.  I came up with this idea to have the children count leaves, identify numerals, and then color the squares on the ten frames.  Since Common Core wants us to recognize up to 20, I made twenty different Velcro spots for leaves, and 20 different numeral cards.  There are also two ten-frames on the tree so that children can color the appropriate amount of squares up to 20.

This week, we started working on number lines, so I designed a leaf number line paper to keep with the theme:

Number Fill in the Gap Leaves

I feel that my posts are never complete unless I share some of the songs that I've been using.  There's a fabulous song by Jack Hartmann called "Follow Me to the Apple Tree," which has the kids actively hopping, paddling, skipping, walking, etc. to an apple tree and then picking the apples.  After they pick the apples, they hurry back through the same motions, sort of like the song "Goin' on a Bear Hunt."  I also really like the song "Seasons" by Dr. Jean, because the kids can easily picture different activities for each of the four seasons.  Both of these songs go really nicely if you're discussing and making connections between the books and the real world.

I also recently put up Four Seasons Writing Folders on TPT, and I think they could be really useful in any writing center throughout the year, especially when you're focusing on seasons.

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