Tuesday, October 2, 2012

4 Fun October Projects for Kindergarten Students

4 Fun October Projects for Kindergarten Students

The leaves are changing color, and the days are growing colder. Here are some great ideas to spark your students’ imaginations!

How much does Mr. Pumpkin weigh?

To keep the spirit of the harvest season alive throughout the month, you can keep a pumpkin in the classroom with the end goal of having students guess the weight. To keep the pumpkin fun and exciting, you can use Mr. Potato Head decorating kits to give your pumpkin a new look. Over the month, the pumpkin will become a mascot for your classroom. Depending on the size of your class, you might allow different groups to decorate the pumpkin at the beginning of the week to promote teamwork and collaboration. The end goal will be to teach the concept of weight, giving teachers the opportunity to weigh a series of different items.

 What really goes Bump in the Night?

What’s better than ghosts and goblins during Halloween? How about the real-life creatures of the night! Owls, cats, mice and bats are all nocturnal animals that are common in the U.S. Throughout the month, students can learn about animals that sleep during the day and play during the night! Bats are strongly associated with Halloween and can seem pretty frightening, especially considering their associations with vampires. However, students seem to find bats extremely interesting. Teachers with large enough classrooms can even make their own bat cave, complete with stalactites, bats and other creepy crawlies (like glow worms and centipedes).

The Discovery of a New World

Through the story of Christopher Columbus, students can learn geographic concepts of navigation by looking at maps and compasses. Have students follow along with Columbus by taking part in their own journey. The teacher can act as the Captain or students can be broken up into three ships (Pinta, Nina and Santa Maria) as you chart the path across the ocean. Using a compass as a guide, students can uncover clue after clue – either on the playground or in the classroom. At the end, students will uncover gold, spices and Native American artifacts. After the treasures have been found, you can explain how each item represents a piece of the nation’s history and how it pertains to Columbus’s journey.

By the Campfire

Storytelling is a part of the Halloween legacy, and there is nowhere better to tell a spooky story or mysterious legend than around the campfire. Recreate a campfire setting by creating paper logs and fire. You can even bring in the noises of the outdoors with an iPhone app or CD that has nature noises. This exercise is perfect for building on the legacy and history of the Native Americans who aided Christopher Columbus. (Also, this is a great way to keep their history relevant and fresh before teaching the children about Thanksgiving.) The campfire tale is all oral presentation, hand gestures and voices. Common fairy tales and fables are good substitutions for scary stories and legends.
Caroline Ross is a former educator who writes for accreditedonlineuniversities.com. She is an avid reader and advocate for global education and equality. Please submit any comments or feedback in the section below!

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