Ekk! I’m uber excited to be guest blogging over at Rachel Lynette’s fabulous blog ‘Minds in Bloom!’ Whip on over there for a peek at my blog post: “Nature Snacks: How to Squeeze a Daily Dose of Nature into Your Classroom.” It’s full of lots of practical tips and a free set of 36 ‘nature snack’ cards with prompts that encourage engagement with the natural world…some of the cards can be used inside the classroom by looking out the window, others can be used while moving as a class from one part of the school to the other, and some are best used outside in the playground!
|Check out the blog post above or click here for your free set of cards!|
|Grab your free copy of these printables here.|
Here in NZ, we often think that autumn has arrived the moment we hit the month of March, even though technically autumn doesn’t arrive until the AUTUMNAL EQUINOX (which is normally around the 20th of March every year). Of course this also means that our friends in the northern hemisphere are heading into their VERNAL EQUINOX at the same time (otherwise known as spring!)
Did you know…..equinoxes occur when the axis of the earth (the line between the north to south poles) is exactly perpendicular to the suns rays? This only happens on two days of the year – the spring and autumn equinoxes. This means that on these days, the day and night lengths are nearly exactly the same (12 hours). The word EQUINOX comes from the Latin ‘aequus’ (equal) and ‘nox’ (night), because on the equinox the night and day are nearly the same.
Click here to see a ‘Brain Pop’ video clip that better models how the earth tilts, and explains how these equinoxes work.
The posters (above) are perfect for displaying on your nature table to mark the transition from: winter to spring (if you’re in the northern hemisphere), or summer to autumn/fall (if you’re in the southern hemisphere like me!) They pair really well with our seasonal nature walk recording sheets (as seen below). Going on a nature walk to mark the changing of the seasons is an activity that most kids will love, and once back in the classroom they can reflect on their experiences by recording the seasonal ‘clues’ they spotted on the nature walk sheets.
Which ever hemisphere you’re located on, I hope you’ve had a happy equinox and enjoy the up and coming season!
Celebrate St Patrick’s day this year by going on a clover hunt! Your class will love folding and assembling this teeny-tiny-one-cut booklet that’s filled with facts about shamrocks and clover…. (e.g. you probably know that 4 leaf clovers are quite rare, but did you know that the world record for the most leaflets on a clover is 56?!!) After assembling and illustrating your pages, head outside to find a clover leaflet to complete your booklet.
|Download your free copy here at my TpT store.|
The instructions below (that also come with the resource above!) are great for creating blank booklets in class – kids love the small size and the fact they require no binding. You can create REALLY small palmed sized books simply by reducing the size of the paper, or increase the book size by using larger paper.
Clover is common in most places, but if you’re having no luck finding a clover leaflet to add to your one-cut book, you might want to change your focus to finding another type of ‘trifoliate’ leaf. Trifoliate simply means that the leaf has 3 leaflets attached together at the base (instead of a single leaf). The strawberry leaf below is a great example of a trifoliate leaf!
|A trifoliate shaped strawberry leaf|
May the ‘luck of the Irish’ be with you this Saint Patrick’s day!
There’s nothing more summery than the deafening chorus of cicadas…. and this has inspired me to whip up another ‘top 5’ printable!
Many of the tree trunks near our house are covered in crunchy ‘cicada shirts’ (this was my 2 years olds description of what an empty cicada shell was after I attempted to explain!)
They really are incredible creatures – it’s amazing to think that some of the nymphs have been underground for up to 17 years before emerging as adults that live for a maximum of 4 weeks. In the photo below you can see the cicadas ‘ocelli’ (the 3 primitive, pinky-jewel like eyes between the 2 main bulgy eyes).
Looking for more thorough resources about cicadas? You might want to have a peek at my ‘Cicada Celebration’ pack! (This 46 page fun and facts booklet is designed to immerse you in all things celebrating the humble but noisy cicada! This pack also contains beautiful photography to help you get up close and personal with this fascinating insect).
|You can find this product here in my TpT store.|
Hope you’re having a great end to summer,