Is it November already?

November means fall leaves, football, cranberry sauce, pilgrims, Native Americans, pumpkin pie and TURKEY!  In my first grade classroom we make a bulletin board for Thanksgiving.  I have a parent helper take each student one by one and ask them how they would cook a turkey if they had to make it for their family for Thanksgiving.  The parent types EVERYTHING that the student says.  The parent also has a list of prompts if the student cannot think of what to say (how long do you cook it, where do you cook it, do you put anything inside of it, how much do you need to make, etc- I give the parent helper a checklist of things just in case). 
I then print them off and the students get to read it to the class (with my help). Afterward, they decorate their border and we post them on the bulletin board:

They are HILARIOUS!  Here is an example:

"First you go to Smith's down the street and buy a big turkey.  Take it home and rip off the plastic and pull all that yucky stuff out of the middle of it.  I think you are supposed to put something inside of the turkey, but I'm not sure what it's called.  Turn the oven on to hot.  It's 100 degrees hot.  Make sure you check the oven a lot because my mom burned one last year.  When it's done it will be brown and you can take it out to eat.  Put salt and pepper on it.  I do like turkey on Thanksgiving Day, but I like chocolate pie better."

For the bulletin board I made a turkey out of butcher paper, the serving dish out of tin foil, and the garnishments are fake ivy leaves.


Happy Halloween!

Candy Bars wrapped decorated in Halloween characters!

Thanks for the idea Room Mom 101!

Halloween Q-Tip Skeletons!

It's time for Halloween!  My students really love to do Halloween activities.  Here is one that I got from my 1st grade team a couple of years ago.  It would be fun for ALL ages and you can even do it at home with your kiddos.  First, we read the book:  Skeleton Hiccups by Margery Cuyler .We always talk about how many bones we have (206 for adults). I show them where their biggest bone is in their body (femur-thigh bone) and the smallest bone in our body (stapes-in the inner ear).

*Skeleton face pattern (or you could just have them draw it on with a white crayon)
*Elmer's Glue
-Ribs: Q-Tip middles-9 per student (cut the ends off with wire cutters or scissors)
-Bones: Q-Tip cut in half-8 per student
-Fingers/toes: Q-tip ends-20 per student

Science Experiments

Every year around Halloween time Ashlee and I do REALLY fun dry ice experiments with our 1st graders.  We talk about the scientific process and the students make really good hypothesis' on what they think might happen with each experiment.  Here is what you do:

You need about 3 pounds of dry ice, gloves, and a hammer to get started.

This experiment you warm up a quarter in your hands and stick it in the dry ice.  It makes the quarter dance and it also makes a buzzing sound! We call it dancing quarters!

If you add a piece of dry ice in a film canister, put the lid on, and shake it- the pressure causes the lid to fly off!  The kids LOVE this one.

If you add water and soap in a cup with a chunk of dry ice, it will bubble up and overflow.  Then, if you pop the bubbles, the dry ice smoke comes out.  You can also add food coloring.

By putting a piece of dry ice inside of a balloon, the balloon blows up!

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