Bird's-Eye View Snowmen: Easy Art Project

Hello friends!
Today I want to share a really cute art project that my 5th graders did this week. In art class, we discussed perspective and looked an examples of a "bird's eye" or aerial view of things. Then we set to work creating a snowman from a bird's-eye view:
Aren't they cute?!?
I found the idea on Pinterest - where else? :)

Here's a step-by-step of our project (picture heavy!)
We passed out the supplies:
Each student got a piece of paper, some watercolors, pastels, and a baggie filled with white paper for the snowballs, scrapbook paper for the scarf, brown paper for the arms, and an orange scrap for the carrot nose.
Then the students drew all over their paper with a white crayon.
Yes, white crayon on white paper.
They drew snowflakes, swirls, and flurries.
Then they used blue watercolors to paint over the entire page, creating the background of our artwork: 
We set the backgrounds to dry: 
And got to work creating our snowmen: 
We then took pastels, traced around the outside, and rubbed around the edges of each snow ball: 
We layered the snowballs, putting a small square of cardboard between each layer to add depth: 
And voila!
 Here's the bulletin board:
 It was a fun and easy project that the kids thoroughly enjoyed!

I;m linking the idea up with my friend, Joanne, from "Head Over Heels for Teaching"

Pop over to her page to see other motivating ideas!

Wordless Wednesday: Penguin Classroom Door Decor

Happy Hump Day, friends!
Here's a quick post to brighten your day:
How cute is this door decor?

Do you ever decorate your door?

Link up your picture posts with Miss DeCarbo:

Tried It Tuesday: Heat & Energy Teaching Ideas

Hello friends!
Happy Tuesday :)

Today I want to share with you some activities we did in our recent science unit on Heat & Energy.

Now, this unit is tough, filled with difficult concepts and unfamiliar vocabulary. So, I found/made a few items to supplement our curriculum:

Here's a great example of an anchor chart, discussing the different types of energy and a quick follow-up sorting activity for the visual learners in your class:
Mrs. Richardson's Class: science  Forms of EnergyThis is an activity that you can use when you are teaching about the different forms of energy.
Now we don't have science interactive notebooks (we do for reading, grammar, and Bible), but I wanted to incorporate some interactive note-taking into our study. So, I gave each student a piece of construction paper and we filled it up with foldables - in essence, we pieced together our study guide, one topic at a time. 

Here are some action shots of my kiddos working on their foldables each day:
You can check out these foldables (and much more!) in my Heat & Energy Interactive Notebook Foldables packet, available on TPT.

We also watched this video on heat by Bill Nye

We also did a couple of cool experiments:
This idea, which came from "First Grade Wow!" showed the difference that the temperature of water has on a substance.
Put glowsticks in ice and hot water.  Look at the difference!!!

We also tested to see which melted faster:
Whole peppermints or crushed peppermints (tying it back into our discussion of matter and surface area from a previous chapter)

I don't know if you've tried out Study Jams in your classroom, but we LOVE them! Here's are some fun activities to show your kiddos about energy, light, and sound:
StudyJams! Heat

Well, I hope these ideas help you to make your study of Heat and Energy more engaging!
I'm linking these ideas up with Holly from "Fourth Grade Flipper"

What Would Your State WEAR?

Good morning, friends!

Our Social Studies curriculum has a chapter covering the States. It's a quick overview that's more of a review than anything (they study the states in-depth in 4th grade). The chapter speaks as if all of the States are characters in a play about America and discusses the important role that each state would play.

During our discussion of the reading, I asked my students what costume our state (Washington) would wear and the hands FLEW UP! They got so into describing the clothes and props that "Washington" would "wear," so I did a spur of the moment project: 
I gave each student a template and let them go to town, designing his (or her) "costume." They could choose to do a historical costume or one that fits the modern-day themes of WA.

Here's a Seahawks loving character with two Washington staples: Microsoft technology and Starbucks coffee!
 Here's a historical spin: a Snoqualmie Indian
 Another Seahawks fan with University of Washington pants, a smoothie from Jamba Juice, and an iPhone:
 This girl has grown up in Seattle and understands the rainy season!
This student had a BLAST with this assignment. 
As you can see, she went ALL OUT: 

This quick, spur-of-the-moment project brought out the students' creativity and gave me some insight into their perception of their state, both historically and culturally.

If you want to try this project with your kiddos, here's the FREE template I found from the blog ARTventures:
all about me template and GREAT ART BLOG for kid crafts :)!

If you're looking for other fun resources that teach about the States, I recommend The Scrambled States of America, an awesome (quirky) book about the states.
It's ridiculous how much I love this book! The Scrambled States of America is hilarious and a very fun way to reinforce geography lessons. The states decide to change places with each other. You learn a little about the personality of each state and hijinks ensue. Very highly recommended!

Here's the description from Amazon:
At the first annual "states party," Virginia and Idaho hatch a plan to swap spots so each can see another part of the country. Before the party is over, all the states decide to switch places. In the beginning, every state is happy in its new location. But soon things start to go wrong. Will the states ever unscramble themselves and return to their proper places?
Packed with madcap humor and whimsical illustrations, this quirky story-starring all fifty states-is chock-full of introductory facts and silly antics that will make learning geography as much fun as taking a vacation.
Click here to purchase on Amazon

If you'd like something to supplement your study of the states, check out this 50+page MEGA packet includes everything you need.
States and Capitals MEGA Packet (CC Aligned)
Simplify your lesson planning today - purchase this print-and-go packet for only $6.

Diamante Poem {FREEBIE}

We just wrapped up a fun poetry unit in Language Arts - and my 5th graders had a blast!
I love introducing the kiddos to new forms of poetry - one of which is the Diamante Poem.

Diamante poems are 7-lined poems that are used to compare and contrast two opposite nouns. It gives students valuable practice in identifying and providing examples of different parts of speech, comparing/contrasting nouns, and writing different lines of poetry.

First, we discussed what words (what part of speech) go on each line. A great grammar review - and reinforcement for those who are still struggling! Then, we did a class example (Cats vs. Dogs). Finally, the students were free to start brainstorming and planning their rough drafts:

Then, once their rough drafts were edited by a classmate, they create their final project. I decided to throw in an art component (decorating the background) to stimulate my artistically-inclined kiddos:
Didn't they do a phenomenal job?!?

If you'd like to try this project, you can download my FREE Diamante Poetry packet on TPT. It includes a definition, instructions for writing, brainstorming paper, and a final draft template.
Diamante Poetry Packet
If you download it, please leave some feedback! :)

Happy almost-weekend, friends!

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