Winter Fun with Vocabulary and Snow Pre-K - 200:00
Hi! I'm Mickey from Mickey's Place.
First I'd like to share a little about myself.
I am a retired teacher National Board Certified Teacher with a specialty as an Early Childhood Generalist. I taught for 44 years in urban school systems and worked with students that were labeled, "slow learners".
In reality, these kids weren't slow but products of their environments, which included a lack of life experiences many suburban kids routinely have.
I would like to share some strategies I developed during these years.
Each month, I would make a list of words pertaining to that month. These words were in addition to the vocabulary specified by the curriculum.
- Every student would make a theme shaped booklet for these words. For example, our January theme was winter, so the booklets were shaped like snowflakes, mittens, and other winter symbols.
- We would add a Word of the Day to their Booklet.
- Students would then practice reading and writing their new word. We used a variety of methods of recording the words, including writing them in rainbow colors, illustrating the words, learning the meaning of the words, and using them in sentences.
- Words were posted around the room, and we would "read the room" several times a month.
- They might match words to pictures
- Put them in alphabetical order
- Play flashcard games
These simple activities, which only took five to ten minutes daily, enhanced the learning process and increased the reading ability of my students. Building reading confidence spilled over into other subjects as well as my students achieved academic success.
If you would like to try these strategies, here are some words that you can use.
- Week One: January, New Year's, holiday, winter, calendar
- Week Two: snow, snowflake, snowball, snowman, snowboard
- Week Three: polar bear, seal, penguin, moose, musk ox
- Week Four: scarf, boots/ mukluk, parka, gloves, mittens
- Other Words: winter sports: hockey, downhill skiing, sledding, ice skating, cross-country skiing
If you don't have the time to create winter words for your kids, I have a product in my store that will do the trick. It's ideal for small group work or for independent center work.
I also have an extension for reading comprehension which is free:
A Fun Experience,
And A Wonderful Science Moment!
If you are lucky enough to live where you get snow, please take a few minutes to go outside!
- Have your students collect Snow in a small plastic cup, 3 oz is perfect, or reuse your yogurt cups.
- Make sure that the student pushes down on the snow in the cup. The snow needs to be packed tight all the way up to the top.
- If the students can't retrieve the snow themselves, you can collect enough in a large container. Now they can gather it into their cups in the classroom.
- (Of course, you made sure the cups were labeled before collecting the snow.) I made this mistake once, and never again!😧
- Add a few drops of food coloring on top of the snow. This will help them to see the colored snow/water when it is melted.
- Now the easy part, let the students watch their snow melt.
- It should take about an hour.
- They can look at it, but don't let them put their fingers in it, until it is melted.
- The AhHa moment is when the snow is melted, and they actually touch it. Their little eyes get wide with excitement, to find that the water is cold.😲
- They should also discover, the water in the cup, is at a lower depth than when they packed in the snow. WHY?
What can you do with this short science activity?
- Estimate how long it will take the snow to melt: time telling.
- With the class make a chart of the steps they used to collect the snow.
- Students can illustrate the sequence of steps.
Why is this little activity important?
One, SNOW is FUN.
Second, students often don't get to go out into the snow and play,
due to being at daycare, and getting home after it is dark.
At dismissal if it is snowing, let them catch a snowflake on their tongues. Simple enough, but definitely a moment they will remember!
If you live, where there isn't any snow, 😭
substitute an ice cube for the snow.
- Have them watch the ice cube melt.
- Predict how long it will take for the ice cube to melt.
- Remember, only let them put their fingers in the water, after the ice cube has melted.
Many students at this age, need to use their senses for this revelation.
Ice is cold when it melts!
I hope you enjoyed these little tips to use with your little ones!😄
by Michele Strayer