This past Monday was the official first day of spring. I know in the Midwest and the Northeast this week there was a hint of spring and spring fever as the snow crocus started to bloom. Spring represents a time of renewal. Longer days, the smell of the fresh flowers, cut grass, and April coming in like a lion and out like a lamb. Spring also represents a time of the year for students to feel refreshed and renewed.
Science Activities Related to Spring Time
There are many science related activities that can be taught during the beginning of spring. Incorporating activities with plants or flowers is great during these months. This could include teaching students about the parts of a flower, pollination, and how the plant absorbs water. A fun activity for the students to do is the carnation color changing experiment. Another experiment including plants could be the traditional experiments where students can feed the plant different liquids, provide more or less sunlight or changing of other variables.
Spring also marks the vernal equinox. On this day, the amount of day light and night time will be almost the same because of the location of the sun in correlation to the equator. In the northern hemisphere, this indicates the beginning of spring including the longer days that will head into the summer. Many countries celebrate this day through a variety of festivals and customs. Teaching students through interactive lessons like the Scholastic web hunt about the equinox are fun and educational.
Spring Cleaning of the Classroom
One way students can feel like they are getting a ‘fresh’ start to spring is by participating in spring cleaning. Students can clean out their desks or lockers. They should throw away the trash, donate used items that are no longer useful to them, but are still in good condition, and keep and organize items that they will need for the remainder of the school year. This activity may seem very simplistic, but it is definitely necessary.
Students with special needs may become anxious during this process as it is difficult for some students to part with personal belongings or papers. Care should be taken by the teacher to let the students complete this process over several days and not to just take the students belongings and throw what they feel is not important away. Teachers and other students should respect the belongings of the other students and ask before touching or throwing something away. Teachers can take part in this activity by spring cleaning their desk area and closets.
Spring Craft Ideas
There are many spring crafting ideas that connect with standards-based curriculum. Kaboose has many great ideas of how teachers can incorporate learning about spring in the classroom. The ideas include printables, crafts, foods, and organization ideas. Craft ideas include making tissue paper flowers, clip butterflies, rock lady bugs, and baby jar gardens. All of these crafts can be combined together to make an artificial garden to brighten up the classroom. They also all use many recycled and reclaimed materials, most of which many teachers already have in the classroom.
Since lions and lambs are popular motifs for the weather during this time of the year, it would be great to tie in a weather lesson with making a craft of lions and lambs. The lambs can be made of cotton balls and lions out of golden yarn. The students could then write down facts of how the lion and lamb are used as metaphors for the weather. The blog Little Fun, Little Learning has a great student example of this project idea.
Feel free to share your spring lessons by commenting!
Article By Laura Ketcham
Picture By quinet