Here I am linking up with Doodle Bugs Teaching for Five for Friday.
It has been such a fun week centering all of my teaching around APPLES!!
I don’t know why I love this unit so much?!
It may be because it puts me in that nice autumn fallish mood….
It may be because I love to eat apples….
Or maybe because I’m a teacher and it’s just kind of part of my genetic make up??
Well…..whatever it is…..I love it and I think my students have fun with it too……and they learn a lot as well!!
I did have a slight problem this year….not huge but a slight one….I couldn’t find my unit file for apples. Ok..maybe that was a huge problem, since I only had about 2 days to plan what I was going to do.
I have so many expandable folders with the word apples on it and yet I couldn’t find even one!! So I decided to do some research….meaning….I pulled up Pinterest….
I found some great pictures along with ideas that I used to make the week really special.
As part of my literacy centers, I have a center called ART SMART.
I found this pin of a really cute poem with a craft idea to go along with it. I thought that would be great, so I clicked on the picture and found out that the idea is from Deanna Jump’s Apple Math and Literacy Unit.
I certainly just HAD to buy this terrific resource…..since I’d lost my Apple unit folder!!
To start off the unit, I used a precious book from the unit that Deanna wrote called, Who Took the Apple? I just loved it! I showed the book on my screen and then I had the kinder cubs complete the sheet that goes with it to create a class book. They loved it!! I put a link in for this unit above with Deanna’s name and the name of her unit. You should really check it out! I’ll reference it throughout this post. Oh….and yes….we did the poem above and it was perfect for my Art Smart Center.
I just need to go ahead and say that I am going to sound like a Deanna Jump groupie throughout this post….but she’s got some good stuff going on!
I am a major fan of hers and DeeDee Wills Guiding Readers Monthly Resources. I began using them last year in January and I knew these were going to be a keeper for me! What I love most about these monthly units is that they teach comprehension skills very explicitly and easily I might add. Everything points back to common core standards and learning targets that fit with kindergarten and first grade. They don’t leave you hanging wondering how you are going to teach these skills. Easy ideas are given for both k and 1 and as you get used to the routine of each daily plan it is really easy to prepare and prep. Then, there are different writing activities throughout the lesson. Also, each lesson brings out particular vocabulary that is found in the book and you can do little activities to go along with the vocabulary. And if that isn’t enough, they have lots of phonics no prep activities that I use as well. I printed all of the comprehension skills posters and the alphabet posters too. In their Guiding Readers Set 2 August/September Unit there is a lesson plan using Betsy Maestro’s non fiction book: How Do Apples Grow? Deanna is a pro with teaching kids about Schema and New Learning. That is the way I like to teach when I’m using nonfiction books. This picture shows a little sample of what we did using the book.
I made a rather sloppy anchor chart that shows their schema and their new information learned from the book. What I love is that most of the students understood that their schema plus their new information equaled new learning for them. As you can see from the 2 drawings, 1 child wrote that the trees help the apples grow and the other even though he didn’t use words I understood he was expressing that his new information was that insects help make the flowers make fruit. By the way, this book really puts in details the “birds and the bees” as far as flowers making fruit. I paraphrased a lot of it, so it wouldn’t sound like I was trying to teach something else…..if you get my drift……
My math centers this week were all apple related. The kids worked on Spinner Math with apples, counting apples and writing the numbers on a work mat, interpreting a graph of their favorite type of apple, and creating this apple glyph….yep….the glyph is from Deanna Jump’s Apple Unit. For kindergarten, glyphs are a great visual to discuss what is the same or what is different about each other. After each small group completed their graph, I would hold up 2 of the glyphs and at first I would model by telling them my “noticings” about the glyphs and then I would hold up 2 more and get them to think and tell me some of the their “noticings” about the glyphs.
On Monday afternoon during our science time, we used our 5 senses to observe a yellow, red, and green apple. The kinders took their science journals and drew pictures of the apples and wrote describing words about the apples. Then, they tasted each kind of apple and we graphed which type was their favorite. Then, we recorded the results on the little poster. Notice the journal on the right……that little kinder used arrows to point to her favorite apple. I thought that was great!
On Tuesday, to introduce maps and globes for social studies, I read How To Make An Apple Pie and See the World by Marjorie Priceman and using a large map, I took pictures of the ingredients and taped them to the different places that are mentioned in the book, on the map. Then, after I read the book, I had an apple pie, and gave all of my little kinders a taste.
This is how I work my science and social studies time block. I teach a whole group science lesson on Monday, and a whole group social studies lesson on Tuesday. I love to integrate science and social studies into my reading and math. However, I think it is important to explicitly teach lessons in these areas even in kindergarten. Then, on Wednesdays and Thursdays, we have SSS time. SSS stands for Science Social Studies Stations. We TRY to get 2 stations in on each day. If I only do 1, I have some time built in on Fridays to finish them up.
This week here were my stations:
Social Studies Station 1: A map of the world for each student. They colored the land areas green and the water areas blue. Basic but it gets them noticing what a map looks like.
Science Station 2: We were also finishing up our Five Senses Unit with an interactive book.
Social Studies Station 3: I read a book about Johnny Appleseed during a read aloud time. Then, the students colored and glued pieces to make a Johnny Appleseed Puppet. There are many patterns for this but my favorite is this one:
Click HERE for the free pattern for this Johnny Appleseed Puppet.
On Friday, they glued a song to the back of their Johnny Appleseed puppet.
Click HERE for a copy of the poem.
Then, I videotaped them singing the poem so I could share it with my Class Story on Class Dojo. They were precious!!
Here is a collage pic of my cutie pies with their puppets:
Science Station 4: Labeling parts of an Apple-(I saw this activity idea on Pinterest) I took an apple and using a divided plastic serving $1 platter, I cut each part and made a label and placed them in the platter. I took time for the small group to touch each part and then label their own recording sheet. They were very engaged throughout the activity. Of course, they got to eat the rest of the apple that I didn’t use.
Click HERE for a copy of the recording sheet.
To complete our unit and my science unit, we did a STEM activity with sink and float. I did this activity last year and the students loved it and learned so much!! You can see that post HERE.
The one thing I did differently this time was instead of the kinders designing a boat of their own to float, I let them make apple boats….in small groups of course…… and they explored with them in the bin of water I used for the sink and float activity. They loved this activity and took their apple boats home.
To find a more detailed example of the apple boats click HERE for the pin.
I know this was a HUGE post, but I wanted to share our week with you in case you needed some new ideas of your own. Hope your week is appleicious!!