For someone who is terrified... like scared to the bones... of spiders, I find it odd that I actually enjoy teaching about the creepy crawlers. Put a spider in front of me, and I'm capable of squealing as loud as my 4-year old daughter. BUT, plaster their pictures in books, and I'm all over that! I mean, they are actually pretty interesting creatures, ya know?! And, I definitely salute mommas who can have up to 2,000 babies... even if you are a spider :) ONE baby is all I can handle right now, ha!
I pulled out this chart that I've used for the past few years. It's really withstood the test of time. I've been feeling guilty about doing all the writing on my charts, so this time I gave my kids the pen and let them write all of our info. Is the spelling perfect? No! Is the handwriting perfect? No! Are the sticky notes straight? NO! But, it's kid-made, so that's makes everything okay!
It's been hanging in our room all week with these spiders I made for decor.
My kids LOVE reading these books I borrowed from our school library. I put books on the white board that match the season or what we are learning about. Their eyes light up when I change out the books!
After reading some books about spiders, we made this chart as a class. Once again, my students did the writing. I realized that I drew my spiders wrong! Their legs should be attached to the cephalothorax, not the abdomen! Even teachers make mistakes ;)
While we were reading the nonfiction books, we noticed that there were quite a few diagrams of a spider's body. So, I gave my kiddos a piece of paper and let them go at it! I think this has been their FAVORITE activity so far!
I love how they all had the same patterns, but their little personalities still shine through! I always tell them that it does NOT have to look just like mine!!
Side-note... my kiddos work in partners A LOT, especially when completing activities like this. When you have 2 people cutting, it just makes things go a lot faster. And, they are so used to working in partners that they don't argue about who takes it home, or ask me questions about it. It saves me a lot of time and paper!!! If you are looking to incorporate things like this, but don't have the time, give it a try :)
Next week we will be fully engaged in our spider research and reports. I stretched my spider plans over two weeks this year because my kids just love learning about these guys. I have to say, I'm glad we aren't finished tomorrow because it has been so much fun!