Tuesday, October 26

We Are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom

We Are Water Protectors... written by Carole Lindstrom and illustrated by Michaela Goade... is a children's book inspired by the protests led by the Standing Rock Sioux against the Dakota Access Pipeline. In 2021, this book received the Caldecott Medal for its illustrations. We Are Water Protectors is a historically significant book, not only because it shines a light on the current events at Standing Rock, but also because Michaela Goade is the first Indigenous illustrator to win a Caldecott Medal. Keep reading to learn more about We Are Water Protectors and for three social studies minilessons you can use.

Learn about the book We Are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom. Blog post includes language arts and social studies minilessons. #waterislife #representationmatters

Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.
 

Monday, October 18

Why You and Your Students Should Go Outside and Take Nature Walks

Not too long ago, I wrote a blog post called 15 Reasons Why Children Need Recess. In that post, I described several of the reasons why children feel like they need outside recess. Many of the children talked about relieving stress, getting exercise, releasing energy, and being able to relax for a bit. In today's guest post by Djew Bennis, Djew explains the benefits of taking your students outside for nature walks to listen to the sounds of nature. She also gives suggestions about integrating nature walks... also referred to as listening walks... with different subject areas. Keep reading to learn more!

Reasons why teachers and students should go outside for nature walks.  Physical activity, observation skills, communing with nature, and more.

The following is a guest post written by Djew Bennis. To learn more about guest posts, please visit the Authors, Publishers, and Sponsors page. Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.
  

Monday, October 11

Pumpkin Balloon Globes

Making pumpkin balloon globes is a fun enrichment activity for your map skills and geography lessons. (It's also a fun way to sneak in a bit of Halloween fun without actually celebrating Halloween.) With minimal materials, your students will be able to create a pumpkin balloon globe that will help them remember where the prime meridian, International Date Line, the North Pole, and the South Pole are and help them remember what lines of longitude are. Keep reading to learn how to integrate making pumpkin balloon globes into your social studies lessons.

Pumpkin balloon globe craft to teach prime meridian, International Date Line, North Pole, South Pole, & lines of longitude. Geography. Social Studies.

Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.

Thursday, October 7

Beatrice's Goat by Page McBrier

Since the mid-1980s, the week between the second and third Saturdays in June has been designated as National Dairy Goat Awareness Week. This week was started in order to educate the American people about the potential of dairy goats and their products. Many communities have festivals during this time in which people can taste foods made with goat milk and meat, try their hands at milking goats, visit goats at petting zoos, learn how to take care of goats, etc. Former President Ronald Reagan himself praised dairy goats for their ability to efficiently convert a wide variety of vegetation into nutritious milk and meat. Yes, goats are great at producing milk and meat. But... I would be at fault if I didn’t tell you about something else that goats can do... goats can change the world.

Learn about the children's book Beatrice's Goat by Page McBrier and how one small goat made a huge impact on a child's life. Based on a true story.

Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.

Tuesday, September 28

Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messner

Winter is almost here in the northern hemisphere and many children are learning about animals and animal adaptations such as migration and hibernation. I recently discovered a book that works really well for an integrated science + art + language arts lesson. It’s called Over and Under the Snow and is written by Kate Messner. It’s an excellent book for teaching about hibernation, which animals hibernate, and which ones don't. Keep reading to learn more!

Learn about animal hibernation with this integrated science, reading, and art activity inspired by the book Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messner.
Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.

Sunday, September 26

How to Use Minecraft to Teach Creative Writing to Kids

Several days ago, I wrote a blog post about making Halloween pixel art in Minecraft. A few weeks before that, I described how to practice finding the area of objects in Minecraft. In this blog post, I'm going to write about how you can use Minecraft during your language arts lessons as an inspiration for creative writing. Keep reading to learn more!

Children practice their writing skills with this Minecraft inspired journal writing lesson plan. Creative writing, technology, Minecraft learning, ELA

Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.

Monday, September 20

Asha Loves Science: Over in the Meadow by Najla Ahmad

When I was a child, I loved listening to the original Over in the Meadow poem. My kindergarten teacher had a felt storyboard set for the poem and I remember feeling giddy whenever she brought it out. In today's guest post, Najla Ahmad talks about her children's book Asha Loves Science: Over in the Meadow... a fun, multicultural twist of that old poem. In Najla Ahmad's version of Over in the Meadow, children learn fun facts about animals and a little bit of Urdu... the national language of Pakistan and 22 states in India. Keep reading to learn more!

Children can learn fun facts about animals in English and Urdu/Hindi in the children's book Asha Loves Science: Over in the Meadow by Najla Ahmad.

This is a guest post by Najla Ahmad that first appeared on my blog in 2016. To learn more about guest posts, please visit the Authors, Publishers, and Sponsors page. Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.

Thursday, September 16

Five Speeches by Martin Luther King Jr.

Did you know that Martin Luther King, Jr. gave an average of 450 speeches per year? When we ask our students about Martin Luther King, Jr. and which of his speeches they are most familiar with, the vast majority of them will say I Have a Dream. I Have a Dream may be his most famous speech... but it's definitely not his only. Keep reading to learn about five of his other significant speeches. Excerpts from each speech are included.

Children can learn about and listen to five speeches by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I Have a Dream, I've Been to the Mountaintop, What Is Your Life's Blueprint, The Other America, Nobel Prize acceptance speech, and Remaining Awake

This is an updated version of a blog post I wrote in 2016. Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.

Saturday, September 11

Minecraft Math Halloween Pixel Art

Anybody who knows me will be able to tell you about my love for the game Minecraft. In a previous post, I wrote about how you can use Minecraft to teach finding the area of an object in math. With Halloween right around the corner, I’d like to share another fun STEAM activity with you in today's post… how to use math and technology skills to create Halloween pictures in Minecraft. In the Minecraft community, these types of pictures are called pixel art. But in the classroom, teachers often refer to them as graph art.

Kids practice their geometry and other math skills when they create Halloween pixel art designs in Minecraft. STEM and STEAM activity. Minecraft math.

This is an updated version of a blog post I wrote in 2016.  Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.

Friday, September 10

What's an Og? by Mary Barry

Learning about letters and the sounds they make... phonics/phonetics... are important parts of learning how to read.  Engaging children in wordplay with rhyming words is one strategy parents and teachers can use to help their students become more proficient in reading.  In today's guest post, children's author Mary Barry talks about her recently released children's book called What's an Og?... a book full of wordplay and rhymes for the /og/ sound. Keep reading to learn about What's an Og? and how Mary Barry came up with her idea for the story!

Children will learn to read and practice words with the /og/ sound while reading What's an Og by Mary Barry. Phonics. Rhyming book. Preprimer/Primer.

This is a guest post by Mary Barry. To learn more about guest posts, please visit the Authors, Publishers, and Sponsors page.  Disclosure: Affiliate links to Amazon are included in this post.