Saturday, 11 March 2017

Spring Ahead Activities for Your Classroom

Now that Spring is on the horizon, it's almost time to put away the clunky boots and heavy jackets.  I won't miss the endless piles of rocks that trample through the doorway or salt stained pants and boots.  Here are some fun activities that your students will be a hit while celebrating warmer days and sunshine.

Start prepping for a Poetry Cafe (Poetry Month is just around the corner).  Here's some helpful hints:

1) Begin reading different poetry forms for inspiration.  I often use several organizers to introduce forms such as Haiku, Quatrains and Cinquains.  Students then write their own.  I encourage the use of Literary Devices too.

2) Create a portfolio for poems.  When students feel they have chosen two or three they'd like to recite, have them practice with a buddy.  This will certainly help when I launch the Poetry Cafe in April.

3) Encourage voice projection.  Students are encouraged to read across the room to their poetry partner. They can project their voice. Then the partner moves to the halfway point of the room. Voices are then projected to the halfway mark.  The partner moves close enough (within an earshot) for the last reading.  Voice projections are important.  I start with a warm up such as "Today is a wonderful day."  Students were encouraged to showcase their best voices. 

Here's the Spring Poetry pack I use to encourage my students to write:

 2)  Add some Spring Math Games to the mix. Three games are included in the pack. Activities include: Draw the Butterfly Math Challenge and Race to the Birdhouse (place value & odd/even sums) . The Draw the Butterfly Challenge includes 2 versions (addition and multiplication). Students are asked to generate sums or products and then draw the butterfly according to each sum or product generated. The first person to complete his or her picture is declared the winner. You will also find two variations of a Race to the Birdhouse game. The first one involves strategically placing numbers between 0 and 99 on a place value board. The other involves generating odd or even sums through addition practice.

3) For your fluent readers, enjoy some Silly Sentences for SpringSilly sentences have always been a fun way to explore sentence building and recognizing parts of speech. Students in grades 3 through 6 will have the opportunity to use subject, verb and complement cards to build and simplify silly sentences using a Spring theme. Challenging verb cards are included with this unit as well as a blank sentence building template, display and label cards and a synonym chart. This is a perfect activity to use in your Word Work Stations or as an extra project for early finishers. 

4)  For those students who love to write, here's are some fun templates in the Spring Writing Paper pack. This package includes spring letter writing paper and lined paper for emergent and established writers. Art work created includes a frog, bird, butterfly, bee, birdhouse, bunny and flowers. Bonus gift tags included.

5) Students can explore a fun writing activity with this Spring Roll a Story.  All you need are the printables and a number cube.  Students will be prompted to tell or write story with a spring theme. This unit includes a story prompt sheet, graphic organizers, word lists (spring & transition words), rubric and specialty writing paper with full and half lined pages. 

6)  Here are some free downloads for the Literary Devices Posters I created. This pack includes posters for Alliteration, Hyperbole, Metaphor, Onomatopoeia, Personification and Simile. A spring vocabulary list is also included to assist students when exploring literary devices. They're a great way to support writing about spring:

Check out this blog post on how I create a Poetry Cafe in my classroom:  Poetry Cafe in the Classroom

Happy Spring!

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