Incredible Insect Activities!

To start off our insect lesson, we compared what we know about the traits of animals, people and insects. However, this may be better for the end of an insect unit.



Here are my favorite Pinterest inspirations from other amazing teachers! Just click the picture to see the website of the original creator of the activity.










Firefly Craft- Add a glow stick inside of a mountain dew bottle! (idea found on Pinterest)














We just completed a fun “Hungry Caterpillar” activity, using real fruit and a caterpillar toy to retell Eric Carle’s story. My students also tasted each fruit, just as the caterpillar did!





























Pumpkin WebQuest


Image by DrBacchus via Flickr

A WebQuest is like a field trip online-for kids. I made this one about Pumpkins because when I searched online, I could not find any that were useful. Most links on existing WebQuests, had links that no longer existed. This was really frustrating because I have some students that could benefit, but they too would become frustrated if the links did not work. I was inspired by what I found online. So, I hope others can benefit from this webquest! Enjoy! You can begin the quest below, online-or you can print the student page so that the student can write on it, to document their journey. Be sure to read the teacher form to find out the many uses of this WebQuest. Have fun!

Pumpkin WebQuest-teacher form

Pumpkins WebQuest-student form

Pumpkins WebQuest


You are going on a WEBQUEST! Your job is to be a detective and find out many facts
about pumpkins. After the WEBQUEST you should know the following:

· Different types of pumpkins-similarities and differences

· The life cycle of a pumpkin

· When pumpkins should be planted, how long they take to grow and when they are harvested

· Many uses of a pumpkin

· The weight and size of pumpkins

Tasks- Your Job

Task 1- Mouse practice!

The first thing a Webquest detective needs to know is how to find the hidden pumpkin pictures. Click the mouse on the
underlined words. Good Job, you found the first set of pumpkins!!! What did they look like?

Task 2 – Pumpkin Types

Pumpkins come in many shapes and sizes. Click on the following links to see! Styrian and little green seed


Pumpkins with the name Baby Boo Canyou guess why one of these pumpkins is called Tallman? And Still MorePumpkin Pictures

Grey Pumpkins

Draw a picture of your favorite pumpkin. Try to list its type and use the correct colors too!

Task 3- Life Cycle

Learn about the life cycle of a pumpkin. (You can ask for this to be printed and then you can cut and glue the pictures in order) Now, draw the life cycle in order. Start with the seed.

1. _________ 2._________ 3._________ 4._________ 5.________

Task 4- Pumpkin Patch

Did you know that pumpkins grow in patches?
Click on this link to see how it starts.

Can you draw your own pumpkin patch? Try it and count how many pumpkins are in your patch.


I am so proud of you! You have completed your detective work! Now you can choose
a product to make, so you can teach us about what you learned! Here are your
choices. Circle the thing you have chosen.

Option 1- Create a non-fiction book with each page containing new

Option 2- Create a pumpkin poster that contains facts and
illustrations or even the life cycle of a pumpkin

Option 3- Create a Power Point about pumpkins

Option 4- Create a short informational video, using a web-cam, iPod
video recording, etc… which tells the details learned during the WebQuest

I am so excited about what you will make!


Your Teacher

Now, celebrate by playing a game: -or- find out more about pumpkins at:

Listen to this wonderful story on YouTube, based on the book “Spookly the Square Pumpkin”






Sid the Science Kid encourages Critical Thinking and Collaboration

Have you seen Sid the Science kid, yet? The first time I saw my six year old watch this show on PBS, I saw how involved she became. The characters are interactive and when I watch the show, I learn something new about Science. It is amazing to see these students in the classroom and home setting. In the classroom, the teacher shows the children the steps of the scientific method: “Observe! Compare! Contrast! Describe!” Scientific journals are also used in Sid’s classroom. I get some great teaching ideas from Sid. I am grateful that PBS has created such a wonderful learning experience for our youngest scientists!

The best part of this show is that you can show students each episode, from your computer-at school! I project it onto the screen in my classroom and then my students take part in many of the activities afterwards. For teacher resources, you can visit this link: Also, I discovered a blog, where a mom and her boys, test out experiments from various episodes. How amazing! Here is that link:

These are some of the topics that Sid teaches:

  • Exploring habitats
  • Little creatures in a forest
  • Sid and his mom talk about air pollution
  • Force, inertia and elasticity
  • Friction, light, and shadows
  • Ways to make less trash
  • Internet Safety
  • Recycling

There are even games that go along with each topic. I just played the weather game. I had fun spinning the weather wheel and then dressing up the character with appropriate clothing! You can even sing 1-2 minute video song clips about his Science topics. What I like the most is that this program and interactive website meets children where they are at. It encourages critical thinking by asking higher level questions, like why? and how? Sid models collaboration as he engages in problem solving discussions. The children are engaged as they learn from Sid! Most of the games on this site can be played on the interactive whiteboard as well.

Sid has an “Investigations” clip video where a real class makes applesauce. Our class viewed the short clip from and watched how the students figured out the best way to use heat to make applesauce. We then decided that we needed ingredients and a recipe. So, for shared writing, I wrote what they children shared!

Then, I had each student then cut up about ten apples. They did it with plastic knives and has so much fun! They then added them to the crock pot along with sugar, water and cinnamon. We cooked it from 10am to 2:30pm on high heat. At 2:00, I let them each stir and mash the cooking apples. Then when the applesauce was ready, I scooped it into a cup, gave them each a fork-and they enjoyed. Every single student enjoyed eating it! I can’t wait to do it again next year!


This is what the apples looked like at 2:00.


Yum! This is how we enjoyed eating our applesauce!


Here is our shared writing poster.

What activity or lesson will your students remember?

International Recycle Symbol

Image via Wikipedia

Last year, my students loves our group recycling project. Parents sent in plastic containers and boxes, the week before and students were asked to create “anything.” While learning about conservation, they children had free reign to create inventions and toys. It was amazing to hear them confidently explain what they made and what its use was. One student made a machine out of a milk jug. It was the magic machine, complete with a red button to make it start! Now, I plan to make a “Creation Station” complete with recyclable containers, donated by parents. I am so excited to begin this station for the first time! At home, my daughter made a fashiony outfit out of the trash from the new crock-pot box. Children are so creative! We just have to give them the stuff to create with.


Learning about wind power

Making a small parachute from a coffee filter and a used paper/ plastic cup, is the first step in teaching young minds about wind power. I was inspired by this activity at the children’s museum and I plan to use it in my classroom. (I have pictures to add, taken from my iPhone, but I am trying to figure out how to do so with my wordpress app). After giving my children some “think time” in the car ride home from the museum, they decided that we could build our own wind tunnel at home with either glass (yikes) or poster board. So, after payday, we plan to build a wind tunnel from poster board the has been rolled and taped into a tall cylinder. Then, our plan is to place a fan (whichever we can find) under the tunnel and drop our special made coffee filter parachutes into it. It should also be fun to experiment with fan speeds, location and parachute design to evaluate the power of the “wind.” I am getting excited as I write this! Is this something your children at home or school would enjoy? Please share!