Low-Tech, At-Home Learning: A Pup By Any Other Name

Luna Photo Courtesy of the Chicago Tribune and Brenna Hernandez/Shedd Aquarium/EPA.

Luna, the sea otter pup at the center of my story Pup 681 became a true celebrity when the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago teamed up with Good Morning America to hold a contest for her naming. But until she was named, she was referred to as “Pup 681” – the 681st otter to enter the otter rescue program at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, where she started her journey. I love the name Luna and how that name reflects the place where she was found – Half Moon Bay in California. But I also love that young sea otters are called “pups.”

Baby animal names can often be so surprising. I think you and your young readers will have fun identifying those names below. While you don’t need my book Pup 681: A Sea Otter Rescue Story in front of you to do this activity, it’s always a bonus if you do. And you can buy it right here.

For more activities, explore all of my FREE  and fun Curriculum and Storytime Guides linked to learning standards at https://jeanreidy.com/schoolslibraries/

And for a complete list of all of my at-home learning activities so far, click on the #kidlitquarantine category. I’ll be posting projects regularly.

Have fun. Stay safe. And stay well.

Jean

Low-Tech, At-Home Learning: Cities, Towns and Venn Diagrams!

Whenever I read my book All Through My Town to young listeners, I tell them that many of the details were inspired by the Chicago suburb where I grew up – Highland Park, IL.

I call it a town. But it’s actually the City of Highland Park. So what’s the difference?

The  simple social studies activity below asks that same question … and may reveal many thoughtful and creative answers.

While this activity was written for classroom instruction, it’s easily adapted for low-tech, at-home learning. Rather than making copies, simply find photos of towns and cities in books or magazines and construct a Venn Diagram of your own. And while you don’t need my book All Through My Town in front of you to do this activity, it’s always a bonus if you do. You can buy it right here.

A little math + a little social studies = what’s not to love about this activity?

For more activities, explore all of my FREE  and fun Curriculum and Storytime Guides linked to learning standards right here: https://jeanreidy.com/schoolslibraries/

And for a complete list of all of my low-tech, at-home learning activities so far, click on the #kidlitquarantine category. I’ll be posting projects regularly.

Have fun. Stay safe. And stay well.

Jean

Low-Tech, At-Home Learning: Yukky and Yummy Plates!

Yummy plateWhen we think of at-home learning, we can’t forget the younger set.

Here’s a simple activity I did with kindergartners who were cracking up over my book TOO PICKLEY! You don’t need to have the book in front of you to do the activity, but it’s obviously more fun if you do. And you can buy it right here.

Too-Pickley-coverSo, the number one question I get from kids who read TOO PICKLEY! is

At the end of the story, what had been on the little boy’s plate?

My illustrator, Genevieve Leloup, and I deliberately left that a mystery. We wanted to involve the reader in the story and get a discussion going. So we encourage the question:

What do YOU think was on his plate?

Really observant kids might look at the few crumbs remaining and guess a cookie, an orange and some peas.

Kids who have read my dedication page might guess hot dogs.

But then you’ll have those kids who fully immerse in the story and say, “Peanut buttSo Yummyer and jelly. Because I love peanut butter and jelly.”

That’s when it’s time to invite kids to tell you what would be on their “So Yummy” plates. How about their “So Yucky” plates?

This would be a great time to talk about tastes, healthy eating and where foods come from, as well.

Finally, using grocery store ads, glue sticks and paper plates, have kids create their own “So Yummy” and “So Yucky” plates and present them to the family. This is a great sorting activity. Extend it to K-1 by involving the whole family and graphing their responses to common foods.

And speaking of sorting and graphing, this easy and fun activity meets Academic Standards  for PreK, 1st Grade and Kindergarten in:

  • Math
  • Literacy
  • Art
  • Physical Education/Health and Wellness
  • CCSS.Math.Content.K.MD.B.3 Classify objects into given categories; count the numbers of objects in each category and sort the categories by count.1
  • CCSS.Math.Content.1.MD.C.4 Organize, represent, and interpret data with up to three categories; ask and answer questions about the total number of data points, how many in each category, and how many more or less are in one category than in another
  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.K.1 With prompting and support, ask and answer questions about key details in a text.

Yucky plateYup! That’s my yummy plate above. And here’s my yukky plate!

How do yours compare?

Send me your Yucky and Yummy photos. I’ll be happy to post them on my blog.

For more ideas for Low-Tech, At-Home Learning check out my Curriculum and Activity Guides filled with fun projects and linked to learning standards.

And for a complete list of all of my low-tech, at-home learning activities so far, click on the #kidlitquarantine category. More coming soon!

Have fun. Stay safe. And stay well.

Jean

 

Low-Tech, At-Home Learning: Color a Bedtime Quilt

Hi friends,

I’m so thrilled that teachers and librarians are re-discovering my book LIGHT UP THE NIGHT. Because while it’s certainly a cumulative verse bedtime book, it’s also an early social studies, science and geography lesson about earth, space and a kid’s sense of place.

And, interestingly, the activity below is a math activity and art activity – so we’ve got some great STEAM action going here.

Back in 2012, I did a lengthy virtual visit with 5th graders at St. Joseph School in Seattle, WA who studied LIGHT UP THE NIGHT (and others of my books) and mastered this quilt project.

Check out all we did in the virtual visit right here: https://jeanreidy.com/2015/02/skyping-with-older-students-and-the-what-i-love-most-critique/.

And take a look at their amazing quilts here: https://jeanreidy.com/2012/10/light-up-the-night-quilt-square-designs-from-st-josephs-5th-grade/.

So lovely, right?

Now it’s your turn. Try this activity at home. Send me photos of your quilts and I’ll post them to my blog. And while you don’t need my book LIGHT UP THE NIGHT in front of you to do this activity, it’s always a bonus if you do. You can buy it right here.

For more activities, explore all of my FREE  and fun Curriculum and Storytime Guides linked to learning standards right here: https://jeanreidy.com/schoolslibraries/

And for a complete list of all of my low-tech, at-home learning activities so far, click on the #kidlitquarantine category. More coming soon!

Have fun. Stay safe. And stay well.

Jean

Low-Tech At-Home Learning: Create a Playground Blueprint

When we’re stuck inside, there may be no better time to dream about the great outdoors – walks in the park, riding bikes, a game of tag … and what about that perfect playground?

All through my book Busy Builders, Busy Week! young readers find clues as to what our animal characters are constructing. They start with a plan. And, of course, the ending is a pure delight.

Today is the perfect day to design your own dream playground … and satisfy some STEAM learning standards along the way. Check out my next low-tech, at-home learning project below. And as always, if you’d like to e-mail me pictures of your creations, I’ll post them on my blog. And while you don’t need my book Busy Builders, Busy Week! in front of you to do this activity, it’s always a bonus if you do. You can buy it right here.

For more activities explore all of my FREE  and fun Curriculum and Storytime Guides linked to learning standards at: https://jeanreidy.com/schoolslibraries/

And for a complete list of all of my low-tech, at-home learning activities so far, click on the #kidlitquarantine category. There will be more posted regularly.

Have fun. Stay safe. And stay well.

Jean

All materials © 2020 Jean Reidy. Author website by Websy Daisy. Shelly the Turtle designed by Genevieve Leloup.