Thursday, February 25

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing + Leprechaun Traps

A Visit from St. Nicholas... also known as 'Twas the Night Before Christmas... by Clement Clarke Moore is a traditional Christmas poem that has inspired authors to write parodies, satires, and their own versions of it.  Are you familiar with The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing?  Children's author Natasha Wing was so inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas that she wrote a St. Patrick's Day version for children to read!  Keep reading to learn more about The Night Before St. Patrick's Day and how you can tie it into a STEM/STEAM activity for your students.

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing is a book inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Read the book then build a leprechaun trap!

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

Author's Summary

Natasha Wing puts an Irish twist on a Christmas classic. It's the night before St. Patrick's Day, and Tim and Maureen are wide awake setting traps to catch a leprechaun! When they wake the next morning to the sound of their dad playing the bagpipes and the smell of their mom cooking green eggs, they're shocked to find that they've actually caught a leprechaun. But will they be able to find his pot of gold?

πŸ€πŸŒˆ Title: The Night Before St. Patrick's Day
πŸ€πŸŒˆ Author: Natasha Wing
πŸ€πŸŒˆ Illustrator: Amy Wummer
πŸ€πŸŒˆ Publisher: Grossett and Dunlop
πŸ€πŸŒˆ Date: January 22, 2009
πŸ€πŸŒˆ Pages: 32

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing is a book inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Read the book then build a leprechaun trap!

Reading the Story

'Twas the night before St. Patrick's-
the day to wear green.
Not a creature was stirring,
except Tim and Maureen.

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day is a fun story to read out loud to your students.  Many of your students will be familiar with 'Twas the Night Before Christmas and will be excited to hear this St. Patrick's Day version.  When you read The Night Before St. Patrick's Day to your students, read it with the same rhythm and animation you'd use while reading 'Twas the Night Before Christmas.  Be dramatic.  Dim the light.  Change your voice for each of the characters.  If your students ask for you to read the book again and you have the time... read it!  The Night Before St. Patrick's Day is the kind of story students will want to hear over and over.

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing is a book inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Read the book then build a leprechaun trap!

Constructing Leprechaun Traps

After reading and discussing The Night Before St. Patrick's Day, go back to the pages that show the leprechaun traps Tim and Maureen made.  What materials did they use?  (boxes, construction paper, stickers, string, etc.)  What are some of the St. Patrick's Day symbols you can see? (shamrocks, rainbows, the color green)  If you were to build a leprechaun trap, what materials would use?  How would it work?

Having your students design and construct their own leprechaun traps is a terrific way to integrate the engineering and art components of STEM and STEAM into your lessons.  If you have time during your day and a variety of materials on hand, your students can build leprechaun traps during class.  They can work in partner groups or independently.  The other option is to have them build leprechaun traps at home as a homework project.  When your students bring the leprechaun traps back into school, you can set them out, invite another class or two to come into your classroom, and host a 'mini science fair!'

Note: If you have your students build their leprechaun traps at home, you can expect moms, dads, brothers, sisters, grandma, cousins, etc. to help build them.  This is a fun project and family members will want to join in.  When this happens, just smile and roll with it.  

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing is a book inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Read the book then build a leprechaun trap!

Check Out These Leprechaun Traps!

The beauty of making leprechaun traps is that no two traps will ever be the same.  They may have similar components, but each trap will be as unique as the child... and possibly their family... who made it.  When you look at the leprechaun traps below, you will see how amazingly creative and well thought out they are.  A special shout out to Hillary Daecher and our friends at Line Upon Line Learning, Mombrite, and Homeschool Preschool for letting me use their photos!

Leprechaun Trap by Hillary Daecher

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing is a book inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Read the book then build a leprechaun trap! Photo credit: Homeschool Preschool
Leprechaun Trap by Homeschool Preschool

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing is a book inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Read the book then build a leprechaun trap! Photo credit: Mombrite
Leprechaun Trap by Mombrite

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing is a book inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Read the book then build a leprechaun trap! Photo credit: Line Upon Line Learning
Four Leprechaun Traps from Line Upon Line Learning

The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Natasha Wing is a book inspired by 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. Read the book then build a leprechaun trap!

To learn more about the other books in Natasha Wing's The Night Before Series, please visit her website.  You can also listen to this read-aloud of The Night Before St. Patrick's Day by Brightly Storytime.




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