Thursday, October 18, 2012

Spiders and Webs and Freebies--Oh My!

October is a love-hate month for me.  I do love the beginning of Fall (although here in Northern CA we are still sweating like it's Summer!) .  It's also a great time in the classroom because we are mostly over the beginning-of-the-year blues.  The kids have adjusted to school, they know my expectations and routines, and they are suddenly capable of doing so much more!  On the other hand, their little minds are preoccupied with Halloween costumes, candy, monsters, and parties.  (Ok, "hate" is a strong word, but.....aaack!)  What's a teacher to do to get their attention?!

Spiders.  Oh my do my students love to learn about spiders.  When I first tell them we are beginning a unit on spiders, many of them crinkle their noses.  "I HATE spiders," they'll say.  I tell them to wait.  Wait until they learn more about them and I promise they won't hate them anymore.  They probably won't exactly want to pet them, but it's such a great topic for teaching that the more you know about something, the more interesting it becomes.  And no matter how squeamish the child, they all enjoy talking about something that liquefies it's dinner and slurps it up  like a milkshake!  (I make sure to ask them if they'd like a grasshopper milkshake for lunch, too!  The response is always a collective "EEEEEEWWWWW!")

What are your favorite spider books to share with your kids?  We have been talking about the differences between fantasy and reality texts.  So far we've read:

Time For Kids: Spiders! (Time for Kids Science Scoops)Aaaarrgghh! Spider!

The Very Busy Spider: A Lift-the-Flap Book (The World of Eric Carle)   The Itsy Bitsy Spider 

 Miss Spider's Tea Party    Are You a Spider? (Backyard Books)

We made a spider counting book: You can find it HERE:

We checked out a spider specimen.

 And I let the kids use a toy spider I found at the dollar tree to count its legs and identify its body parts.

This guy is hanging over my white board.  The way he is "holding" the heart is completely accidental, but I love it!  (That heart was from a lesson about being kind and how unkind words can crumple our hearts.)

We made a has/can/is chart for spiders:

Here is my front door: (more deco from the Dollar Tree!)

 And of course, I always like to end with a freebie!
This is part of my Read It, Glue It, Write It Fall Pack on TpT right HERE. 

More spidery ideas to come next week!  

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Saturday, October 6, 2012

October Love and a Freebie

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Whew!  October is off and running!  I was glad to see September go!  My class is becoming more independent and I love my October themes. (Pumpkins and Spiders!)

My husband had back surgery this week, so I had my first sub of the year.  It went remarkably well. (The surgery AND my sub day!)  Now that he's home, I will be out a few days this coming week to help him around.  But I told him that's all he gets!  Poor guy.  Luckily, he accepted my "teacher-ness" a long time ago!

I just made a cute Halloween book that follows the Brown Bear pattern.  It's free in my TpT Store.

Just CLICK HERE if you want it! 
Please leave me some love if you enjoy it!