Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Hallowe'en craft: Simple woolly ghost

The Hallowe'en holidays are fast approaching and it's time to get stuck into some nice spooky crafts. Here's a simple ghost craft for children to make. 

I had previously blogged about making woolly octopuses. Simply make them in white, following steps 1 - 3 you have a ghost! 

You could also make the full octopus, adding scary faces (using wool or felt) to make different types of spooky monsters.

What you need:
  • Scissors
  • Wool
  • Book
  • Googly eyes (and glue if they're not self-adhesive)
  • An elastic band
Step 1:
Wrap the wool around the book 60 times.
Step 2:
Put and elastic band tightly around the wool, about a third of the way down. Then tightly tie some wool (of the same colour) just above the band. Remove the elastic band. Do the same a few centimetres from the top. 

Step 3:
Snip the loops at the top and bottom. (You should now have 120 strands of wool at the bottom.)
 Step 4:
Take 15 strands of wool and plait to form a leg. Repeat this to create 7 more legs.

Step 5:
Add the eyes et voilà!

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Creative Drawing Activities

Ashleigh from Ashleigh's Education Journey wrote a great post about how she organises her early finishers activities. These are focused on critical and creative thinking.

 I particularly like her creative drawing task cards. The child is given a squiggle to begin and has to create a meaningful picture with that as a starting point. She has also shared some examples of how the children have used it. Visit her blog post and scroll to the end to download those creative drawing task cards for free.

Some other great creative drawing resources are:
The Anti-Coloring Book by Susan Striker

This is a series of books for children and adults in which you are given a part of a picture and some instructions. As the instructions require reading, this is more suited to older children. You can download some sample pages from this book for free on her site.

Do you Doodle? by Nikalas Catlow
 This is along the same lines as The Anti-Coloring Book series. You are presented with the start of a picture and some written instructions to help you to complete it.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Behaviour management clip charts

After seeing so many creative clip charts on teaching blogs, I've decided to give this behaviour management technique a go this year. The idea is simple: Everybody has a clothes peg. Everybody starts the day on green. The children are asked to move their pegs up or down according to how they behave.

I am teaching 5 and 6 year olds this year and so far, have found this technique really effective. The children get really excited about moving their pegs up. It's great for trying to target specific behaviours e.g. "I will move everybody in the most cooperative group up after this activity. They also really don't like moving it down. A very calmly worded, "Please move your peg down" is a lot more pleasant than raising your voice and getting angry.

The clip chart I have been using is from Jessica at Under the Alphabet Tree. You can download it for free from her TPT store.

Here are some of my favourite clip charts that I've stumbled upon:

This rock 'n' roll clip chart from The Inspired Apple:
A basketball-themed one from Mrs. Tyner at Create 2 Educate:
 A cute jungle-themed one from Curriculum to the Core:

This pirate-themed clip chart from My (Not So) Elementary life:


Thursday, 3 October 2013

Join the dots for various, differentiated lessons

I had a little problem this week. I wanted to create lots of differentiated (but in some way similar) homework tasks. Some children in my class are counting in ones, others skip counting in 10s and some really need to be challenged. I decided to give a join the dots activity. Little did I know how many different types of dot-to-dot worksheets already exist online.

Source: Kidscrafty.com
Here are some of my favourite sites with FREE join the dots activities. Kidscrafty.com has some great dot-to-dot activities based on sequencing capital and lower case letters,counting in ones (some are incredibly simple!) and skip counting in 2s, 5s and 10s.

I found some multiplication dot-to-dot activities on prasinipriza.com like this 6 and 7 times tables practice sheet.

For more challenging worksheets, look no further than this resource from Education.com! It has skip counting activities for 2s, 3s, 4s etc. and the sheets contain many dots (so the children have to skip count beyond 100!). There are 15 sheets of various difficulty levels in this pack.