Tuesday, March 26, 2013

The One About Dr. Seuss

Yes, I know.

I know this post is terribly late.  Horribly Late.  No good, very bad late.  I'm sorry.  But, remember the break?  Well, it happened but the teaching continued.

Do you celebrate Dr. Seuss' birthday?  I mean, what's First Grade without this momentous occasion?  The Father of Children's Literature.  Did I just coin that?  Probably not, not my luck.  But it's true.  I'm a huge Dr. Seuss fan and, as it turns out, so are my kiddos this year.  They tore his books up.  In fact, I still have all of my Dr, Seuss books up on top of our library's shelves where we keep the books that relate to what we're studying or interested in.  The kids just keep going back and I don't have the heart to put them away yet.  But I will soon.  Oh, that reminds me, I have to put out my Easter books!  I can't believe I forgot.  Sorry for my squirrel moment there (you know, like the dog in Up).  Anywho.  

Dr. Seuss, yeah, that's where I was.  I have a whole day of fun activities planned.  Dr. Seuss Day is what I call it actually.  It's always the Friday closest to his birthday because, let's face it, only a Friday can support such craziness and fun right?  I do many different activities throughout the day but sadly I did not get a picture of them all here.  Even though my iPhone is never more than a few feet inches away from me, we still got so busy I couldn't capture it all fast enough.  I'll detail the big things here for you and show you some of my favorite pictures.

Now, I am by no means claiming to be totally original in these ideas.  In fact, you likely do most of them yourself.  I just wanted to share what I love about the day.  Maybe you'll relate.]?  Maybe you'll get a new idea?  Maybe you'll just read along with me?  Who knows.  I'll list my resources at the end in case you want to hunt them down for yourself.

This year Dr. Seuss Day coincided, completely by accident, with our Science unit on Earth's Resources/Recycling.  It was totally random, but I think I'll orchestrate this from now on because it worked out so well.  After learning all about resources and the 3 R's, we read The Lorax.  The movie, although they have all seen it a gobzillion times, is still quite relevant so they were pumped.  I was surprised at the number of kids who had not actually read the book!  Gasp!  We read the book and related it to recycling and caring for the planet.  This led to a discussion about what we can do since, maybe just maybe, the Lorax was referring to us at the end of his book.  Each student then chose one thing they could do to help the Earth and wrote it on a little Truffula tree.  We hung these up on our door.  Sorry no pictures :(  But the kiddos loved it and came up with some great ideas.  We also did some comparing and contrasting with my beloved Venn Diagram as we worked on comparing the book to the movie.  

On Dr. Seuss Day we started off around morning snack by reading One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.  I then gave them each a handful of the multicolored goldfish crackers and they sorted and graphed them.  Eating was off limits until their final count had been tallied and recorded.  We then shared our results.  Turns out that the usual color, orange, is by and large the most common color.

One of the other activities we read was I Can Read with My Eyes Shut.  The kids thought this was hilarious and it led us into a discussion about gifts and talents, whether or not they're done with eyes open or shut.  We each then created our own sheet stating what we could do with our eyes shut.  I collected these all and made a book out of them, giving each student a copy.  They loved having everyone else's page to read.  It was fun

No celebration in my class would be complete without a hat, so of course we made a Cat in the Hat hat.  It never ceases to amaze me what you can do with copy paper and a sentence strip!  

We also read Bartholomew and the Oobleck.  This is one of my favorite books and I always try to read The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins prior to it, if I have time and remember, since he is the main character in both.  Of course, we then make our own oobleck out of water and cornstarch, with green food coloring.  This is so simple but it never fails to impress them.  I got applause with it this year.  Seriously, applause.  I mean I couldn't take all the credit, I found the idea long ago on the Internet.  But I did let them clap, my adoring fans.  I mean, who am I to deny them that?  So we made this and talked about solids and liquids.  We haven't covered this yet in Science so I'll be able to use this when we do to connect it all.  I explained the basic idea of a non-Newtonian fluid and then let the kids get their hands in it.  The expressions on their faces was priceless and I with I could show them all to you.  They LOVED it I tell you.  I'll show you Braeden's picture, it's a good example of the general population's.

The final activity of the day came with Green Eggs and Ham.  They've all read this before and when I pulled it out, they instantly knew what our activity would be!  As it turns out they do like it Sam!  I went easy with the ham part this year, opting for ham lunch meat as I haven't found a great way to get green meat?  The eggs though?  That's easy.  Those little guys tore it all up.  All 18 of them.  I only had one container of lunch meat and one dozen eggs.  What was I thinking?  I could have easily used triple that amount.  You'd have thought they had never eaten eggs or ham before.  That or it is just their all-time favorite meal.  Regardless, I've made a mental note to up the count for next year's activities!

The day ended, along with out green eggs and ham snack, with watching the first half of The Lorax.  I mean, after a day like this I needed a little bit of down time and they had been amazing.  They deserved a little movie time.  Plus, it did tie in with our Venn diagram and discussion from the morning!

All in all it was a very successful day.  Nothing too fancy or extraordinary, I told you that before.  Just great opportunities for learning fun!  I did other small things throughout the day with some other books, but these were the biggest.  How about you?  How did you celebrate?  Did you celebrate?  Any tips, tricks, or ideas you'd like to share?  I've already created a board on Pinterest for Dr. Seuss activities for next year.  I got it started this year but did so too late to incorporate much.  There are so many awesome teachers out there with amazing ideas!  I can't wait until March 2014 to do it all over again!  

Thanks for hopping by!  

- Oh the Places You'll Go - Jodi Southard: fun-in-first.blogspot.com
- Dr. Seuss Noun Sort - Mrs. Saoud: primarygraffiti.blogspot.com
- Dr. Seuss Rhyming Memory Match - Michelle Tomaszewski: thecolorfulclassroom.blogspot.com
- Oh the Punctuation You Will Use! - Annie Minor: awesomein1st.blogspot.com
- Oh the Thinks We Can Think - Abby Mullins: theinspiredapple.blogspot.com
- Seussy Synonyms - Christie Berlener: first-grade-fever.blogspot.com
- The Lorax - Rachel Friedrich: subhubonline.blogspot.com
- A Unit for March 2nd - Rachelle: whattheteacherwants.blogspot.com


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