When the Weather Outside Is Crazy

When the weather outside is....crazy.  You know - super warm one day, super cold the next - raining like cats and dogs one day, sunny as summer the next.  At least, that's the way winter break has been in these parts.  How about you?  I actually think it's going to make our weather unit super fun when we go back to school next week!

It's already one of my favorite science units to teach because it is so interactive!

We make our own wind vanes to observe the wind's direction.

We make a class anemometer to observe the wind's speed.

Students make "practice" thermometers that they can use with a partner to quiz each other on reading thermometers correctly.

Students bring in water bottles so they can construct their own rain gauges.

We also do a few fun experiments like this one that shows us how clouds work!
(Just a shaving cream cloud sitting on top of water.  Students add water droplets (food coloring) one at a time and when the cloud gets too full, they will begin to fall (rain).

Since my school requires us to use Interactive Notebooks for science.  I have made it my mission this year to create them in the same "No-Cut" format that I use for math...it has made my life so much more sane! :)

You can grab it below, if you're interested.  It has recording pages that we use for all of these tools, plus more!




Don't Be A GRINCH!

So, on the last day of winter break we had a little GRINCH day.  It was a last minute idea and my team couldn't find ANY Grinch attire....we searched everywhere!  So, we tried our best with a green theme.  I do have green on under that black coat - promise! :) 

I thought I would share a couple of activities we did with you. I found this adorable directed drawing from Art Projects for Kids.  It was just PERFECT!

I love how they all turn out so different!  Some of them weren't happy with theirs at first, but once they began coloring them I heard things like "Mine is just perfect!" and "This is my best drawing ever!"  I think those smiles tell you how proud they are of their work. :)

Of course, I always create one right along with them and they just oooh and ahhh over my work.  They think I should become an art teacher (HAHA) but what they don't realize is that I'm just as amazed as they are that I created something that somewhat resembled the Grinch! :)

But, they always think the teacher's work is golden.  So, I use that to my advantage.  I like to "auction" mine off at the end of the day and let a student take it home.  This time of year, you can even use that as a little behavior management technique and let them earn "tickets" into the auction.  (Hey...we need all the help we can get the week before Christmas break, right??)

We're currently working on learning to use dictionaries and thesauruses in our classroom, so I knew I wanted to get some green paint strips from Lowe's.  I write an adjective describing the Grinch at the top of each strip and students worked with partners to find synonyms in a thesaurus.  They had to be able to pronounce their chosen word and use it in a sentence to share with the class.  They loved learning new Grinchy vocabulary! <3

Next year, I'll be ALL SET for Grinch day!  Today, I received a snail mail package from Jen over at Teaching in the Tongass - a Grinch shirt, water bottle, and flash drive FULL of clip art sets from her shop!  I won a contest she hosted - Merry Christmas to me!!!  I LOVE Jen and use her amazing clip art on a ton of my products.  Go visit her shop - you'll love her work!


A Calculator License

I'm blogging over at Owl-ways Be Inspired today so hop over there to visit!  You can learn all about how I use a Calculator License in my room....and even grab a FREEBIE!


STEM Challenge Student Gift Idea


Hi friends!  Whew!  Is this a busy time of year, or what??  So busy in fact, that I recently realized I had not ordered books for my students' Christmas gifts!  EEK!

That kind of left me scratching my head for a bit.  BUT, I think I've come up with an idea that I like even better.  There's a big push towards STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) learning right now and I'm a huge believer in gifting experiences to people.  Combine those two things and I've come up with a new little gift for my students!

The best part is, most of these supplies I collected from my classroom - no money needed! :)  The goal will be for students to use ONLY these supplies (scissors and tape are allowed) to create a device that will launch a snowball (white pom-pom) across the room.  I'm hoping this will be a win-win in that it will help fight that boredom that sets in over winter break and it will keep my students' brains engaged a bit!  Who knows - they may be able to get the whole family to join in for some quality family fun time!  I mean, that's what the holidays are all about right!

With the supplies included, I can envision my little scientists creating slingshots, canons, or even snowball blowers!  I can't wait to see/hear about what they create! :)

In keeping with the snow theme, I also included the classic "Snowman Soup" for students to enjoy as they work on their creations.  Super cheap!

I tossed it all into a white sack and kept with the snow theme by decorating the bag to look like a snowman and adding the little gift tag along with the STEM Challenge instructions.

If you're looking for something different for your students' gifts....or are empty-handed and in a pickle at the moment like I was....you can pick this little packet up for FREE in my shop right now!  ENJOY! :)

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