Friday, November 11, 2011

Thanksgiving and Fall

Thanksgiving is about giving thanks.  This is what I like to teach my kids.  Of course turkeys make such great crafts.   The book by that name I got from scholastic for $1 says it all.

Books

I made a simple big book about scarecrows from a worksheet I was given to let the children color.  In my opinion children shouldn't be given worksheets, but they do make great books with a little creativity.  You could make it with any worksheet. The words I typed on the computer were:  The boots are black.  The hat is yellow.  The shirt is red.  The pants are blue.  Here is a scarecrow.  I just made multiple copies of the worksheet, colored it according to my words, and laminated. 

This book here looks cute.  Sonshine Tot school also gives you her lessons to go with the book.

Here is a flannel board set to go along with I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie.

Turkey feather
My favorite activity for Thanksgiving is one that isn't done in the classroom.  I cut out a large feather shape out of poster board or any thicker paper and send it home with this note.
                                   Dear Parents,
                                         This is a turkey feather that will be part of our class turkey.
                                   Please decorate it at home as a family.  You may use any material
                                   you chose.  Some suggestions are string, cereal, stickers, markers,
                                   pictures, etc.  Have fun and be creative.  Bring it back as soon as
                                  you have finished, so we can give our turkey wings.
                                                                                     Thanks

When the children bring back their feather, I hang it up around a peanut shapes turkey body.  It is a great way to include parents in the daily activities of school. It shows kids how we are all different but work together to make something great.  And it makes the neatest bulletin board.  I only wish I had taken pictures of last years turkey.  Since I have such small classes, I keep the feathers and put them up year after year.  The kids love to see what their siblings made when they were in Preschool.

Here is a cute take home idea where children take home a turkey and have to disguise it.  It would go well with the book The Plump and Perkey Turkey.

Truckful of Thanks-  We use to plan transportation in November, so I combined it with Thanksgiving by giving each child a pre-made dump truck which they drew and dictated what they were thankful for.  Then we cut out a rectangle the size of the truck bed and attached it with a brad, so when you opened it, you could see what was inside the truck.

Turkey place mats
I also tried to include some Fall activities in during the month, a list of ideas is below.  So, we rolled acorns on a large piece of yellow paper.  This paper is then used to make a "place mat" by scalloping the top to curve like feathers of a Turkey.  Then you can add the child's foot print or cut foot print from paper to make the turkeys body.  Color eyes, beak, and a waddle.

Turkey handprints
This is a clasic art project.  I still have mine from when I was little.  Here is a different version.  It gets children using those site words.  I've also used them to make cards and let kids glue real feathers on them.

Other activities
Here is Teach Preschool's collection of Thanksgiving ideas.  She is an amazing collector.

Here is a cute game printable to go with the book There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly

I will post some Turkey poems and finger plays on Friday

Here is a whole packet of cute free printable stuff for Thanksgiving.



Fall
It is just now showing signs of Fall down here, so here are some Fall activities for this month.

The easiest activity I have done is to make tissue paper leaves by giving the children a piece of contact paper and some colorful tissue paper squares to put on it.  Great fine motor activity.  When they were done filling the contact paper up, I would cut a maple leaf shape from the Ellison machine.  Then, I would punch a hole in it and tie a string on it to hang.

Here are some really cute leaf activities including a real leaf graph and observation sheet.

I would love to try this crayon melting activity from Teach Preschool.
 

This is such a cool use for modge podge to keep real leaves looking new.  And, since colorful leaves are hard to find down here, when I visit Ohio we will be doing this project.

Here are some Fall word cards to hang in your writing center.

Here is Teach Preschool's collection of scarecrow activities.

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