About once a month, we will feature some insight from amazing guest bloggers (GLOGGERS!) on a topic of interest. This month's topic is: KIDS AND THE GREAT OUTDOORS!
We asked our gloggers the following questions:
What do you do to teach your students or your own personal kids about nature or the outdoors? What activities have you done? What activities would you like to do?
|It looks like each class had their own|
birdhouse outside. Pretty Cool!
|Evidence of creativity at its finest!|
And now, I introduce to you our galactically gifted gloggers!
Amy talks about BEES!
|Students Making Observations|
The students will even make lip balm from beeswax, view a live observation hive, and enjoy a slide presentation on how our economy is affected by bees. Students also learn about the strange disappearance of honey bees over recent years, and what the consequences will be if scientists don’t figure out a way to stop honey bees from vanishing. This is an eye opening experience for my students every year. Many local bee keepers are passionate about their hobby, and if you contacted them they would probably love the opportunity to share their love for honey bees with your students.
Click here to go to Amy's Store!
Alicia talks about CREEK STOMPING!
My kids have always enjoyed being outdoors. Unfortunately for them, I'm not exactly thrilled to be "roughing" it. I'll lay by the pool all day, but being one with nature is not my cup of tea. However several years ago, I discovered a fun way to get my kids outside, exploring, learning and having fun and even have fun myself while doing it. It's called "creek stomping." For those of you who don't know what this is, it is simply playing around in a creek. We'll walk for hours, finding animals, playing in waterfalls, flipping over rocks, swimming and splashing. I'm much more cautious than they are. I'm always on the look out for a creepy crawly to steer clear from...but my son LIVES for those things. He can catch ANYTHING. We once found a gigantic alligator snapping turtle, along with little baby snapping turtles, snakes, crawfish, frogs, tadpoles and even a baby duck. We've gone all over our neck of the woods in southwest Ohio in search of new creeks to explore. When we travel, we'll try to find some new creeks as well. We found some great ones in Hocking Hills and Great Smoky Mountain National Park. It's so fun to watch my kids getting hands on experience with local animals, fossils and rocks. They can't get enough of it! It feels like we are on an adventure every time. It's definitely become one of my favorite things to do with them in the summer.
Click here to go to Alicia's Store!
Susan talks about growing plants and class pets!
|Click here to go to Susan's 2 Week Life Cycles Unit Plan!|
|© Cristina | Dreamstime Stock Photos|
I usually have a class pet each year. Last year we had a pumpkin. We painted it for halloween and when it began to rot we planted it outside our back door. This year we had a pet sunflower. Unfortunately, I forgot to take it home over Spring Break and it died :(.
This past week we planted some veggies. My students planted corn, carrots, zucchini, squash and peas. We check on our plants each afternoon to see if they have sprouted yet. We will be graphing their growth and measuring to see which vegetable grows fastest.
Click here to go to Susan's Store!
Click here to go to Susan's blog!
Rosie talks about BUGS!
|My cute little grub exploring the bugs!|
|Think of the amazing artwork that could be created |
with this as inspiration!
|Click for this BUG SCAVENGER HUNT freebie!|
|Click for FUN BUG ACTIVITIES!|
|You can use these Note Taking Printables: Click here!|
|I used this fantastic free review|
game that I put in my
Literacy Centers after the lesson,
by Jessica Smith:
THEN, I give them all clipboards, pencils, and a note-taking sheet, and we head outside! We walk around the school, through the playground. We investigate trees, and grass, and little bugs. We look at wood chips and plastic garbage. And all the time, the kiddos are talking: "This blade of grass is a living thing!", "Those clouds aren't living things because they don't need food" etc. And they are happy as clams to be outside :)
Meeghan talks about an alphabet scavenger hunt!
|An example of the activity|
Our resident bloggers also have some great ideas!
Kenzie talks about exploring the needs of plants with lima beans!
I am a huge outdoors person and I feel that kids are not outside nearly enough. I recently did an activity with my students that involve planting lima beans. Each group was given a Tupperware container, water, a piece of paper towel, and a couple of cups of presoaked lima beans. Without much direction, I had them assemble their items. I proposed a COMPETITION to see which group could produce the longest, healthiest sprout.
|Picture from http://www.flickr.com/photos/11741436@N04/6063275716/|
|This activity helps children understand the different |
parts of plants and also helps them understand where their
food comes from. $2.00.
The students looked at everybody's projects and wrote down their hypothesis for which group they thought would produce the longest, strongest sprout. They explained why. They also wrote about how they thought my project would do and explained why.
Throughout the course of the project, the students recorded measurements and wrote observations. They seemed to really enjoy this project!
|Free activity to help kids learn about |
the parts of plants
|Awesome Nature Scavenger Hunt!|
Juliana talks about a fun ocean animal research project!
Spring is my favorite season to teach about the outdoors. We get butterflies and ladybugs and watch them grow. When we have recorded our observations in a special handbook, we go to the garden and let them free.
Stay tuned for next month's glogger post, which will be all about building a positive classroom community at the beginning of the school year!
Until next time! :-) Kenzie