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Baseball Literacy and Crafts


Baseball Literacy and Crafts

A great way to slip in extra literacy activities is to make it all about something your child loves. If your child is a baseball lover, these ideas will be perfect for family fun!


Literacy Ideas for a Baseball Theme from Making Learning Fun

There are many literacy activities using a baseball theme.

 

Baseball Printables from Print Activities

Mazes, coloring, puzzles, others

 

Baseball Activities for Kids from How Stuff Works

There are 4 games based on a baseball theme.

 

Baseball Crafts for Kids from Artists Helping Children

Magnets, pennants, piñatas…

 

Baseball and Softball Crafts from Family Crafts

Printables, baseball beaded safety pin, rock baseball craft, others

 

Baseball Crafts for Kids and Adults from Squidoo

Beads, printables, patterns, others

 

Baseball Coloring Pages from Hello Kids

13 different coloring pages

 

Have fun!

Gail


Take Me Out to the Ball Game! Books about Baseball


Take Me Out to the Ball Game! 
Books about Baseball

Baseball season started on March 22. Have you seen any games or played yet this season? If you haven’t already caught baseball fever, read some of today’s books and you’ll catch it for sure!

 

Pete the Cat: Play Ball! by James Dean

Pete the Cat plays baseball and although he’s not all that good at it, he still has fun. This is an I Can Read book.

 

Slugger by Susan Pearson, illustrated by David Slonim

Ollie is a slug who loves baseball. He really wants to be on his favorite team, the Creepy Crawlers, but slugs are not really built to hit, catch, and run. Never mind, Ollie is determined. I admit I’m a sucker for slug books since I read Slugs in Love by the same author.

 

Take Me Out to the Yakyu by Aaron Meshon

This is a lucky boy—he gets to go to baseball games in America and in Japan. In America, he cheers for the Pigeons with his grandfather. In Japan, he cheers for the Cicadas with his other grandfather. This fun book is all about the love of baseball. Plus it teaches you some cool baseball lingo in two languages.

 

Good Night Baseball by Michael Dahl, illustrated by Christina Forshay (sorry, no link)

A boy and his dad attend a baseball game at their local stadium. They do all the basic baseball things and as they leave the boy says good night to the various parts of the stadium, like Good Night Moon. Cute!

 

Baseball Is… by Louise Borden, illustrated by Raúl Colón

This book goes to all the corners of baseball: the sound and feel, statistics, tension, victory, failure, history… It does it all with lively illustrations and poetic text. It is baseball.

 

The Technology of Baseball by Thomas K. Adamson (sorry, no link)

There’s baseball played for free time fun and there’s high-tech baseball that uses computers, sensors, accelerometers, and all sorts of other equipment. This book covers lots of what goes on both on the field and behind the scenes.

 

ABCs of Baseball by Peter Golenbock, illustrated by Dan Andreasen

Like baseball but sometimes get confused about some of the terms? This book may be just what you are looking for. Each letter covers several terms with easy-to-understand definitions. Some terms are familiar, such as base, fly ball, and line drive. Others are ones I’ve less familiar, such as can of corn, hot corner, and Triple Crown.

 

BIOGRAPHIES

Catching the Moon: The Story of a Young Girl’s Baseball Dream by Crystal Hubbard, illustrated by Randy DuBurke

Marcenia Lyle loves baseball more than anything and is a really good player. All she wants is to grow up to be a professional ballplayer. But back in the 1930’s that was not anything that had ever happened before. This story follows her first big break toward achieving her dream. The back page tells the rest of her remarkable story.

 

Becoming Babe Ruth by Matt Tavares

Babe Ruth was one of baseball’s first legends. This wonderful story follows his early beginnings in a reform school (he got in lots of trouble as a kid) to becoming a truly great ballplayer. With large illustrations and beautifully written text, this would be an outstanding read aloud.

 

Miracle Mud: Lena Blackburne and the Secret Mud that Changed Baseball by David A. Kelly, illustrated by Oliver Dominguez

I’m learning so much researching for this post! Before the 1930s, new baseballs were too smooth and shiny. Players tried all sorts of ways to take off the shine. Lena Blackburne was a professional player who figured out a way to solve the problem—he used his special mud. It’s still being used today!

 

Barbed Wire Baseball by Marissa Moss, illustrated by Yuko Shimizu

Kenichi Zenimura (Zeni) was an outstanding baseball player. When World War Two broke out, Zeni and his family were sent to an internment camp (a kind of prison) because they were considered possible spies, just because they were Japanese-American. While there, Zeni organized the people in the camp to create a baseball field. This true story is well told and illustrated.

 

You Never Heard of Willie Mays?! by Jonah Winter and Terry Widener

This picture book tells the story of the great baseball player from the time he was a teenager to his stardom with the New York Giants. The author tells the story as if he was your uncle sitting with you and the illustrations have the feel of the ballpark on a summer day.

 

What do you like better, playing baseball or watching baseball? Write your preference in the Comments Box!

Gail


Online and Offline Games for Earth Day


Online and Offline Games for Earth Day


Earth Day is all about being active in the environment and doing a better job of being good Earth citizens. But for times when you need a little rest from all that, here are some games.

 

Earth Day Games from DLTK

Both online and printable games and puzzles

 

Earth Day Games from Primary Games

Online games and puzzles…also scroll down for more Earth Day ideas

 

Free Earth Day Games and Activities for Kids! from Kidz Page

Online and printable games, puzzles and activities

 

Animal Rescue Games from Nick Jr.

These aren’t exactly Earth Day games, but they look like fun

 

Have a wonderful and active Earth Day!

Gail

 

There’s So Much to Do! Earth Day Crafts & Activities


There’s So Much to Do! 
Earth Day Crafts & Activities

 

Earth Day is next Tuesday. Here are lots of ideas for how to be active all day. And then for the rest of the year! So much to do!

 

20 Earth Day Crafts & Activities for Kids from No Time for Flashcards

Includes: Nature Detectives, Make recycled Paper, Playdough Earths, and more…

 

The Happy Earth Day Coloring and Activities Book from US EPA

An 11-page coloring and activities book

 

Earth Day Crafts, Activities and Projects from Enchanted Learning

Crafts, worksheets, activities, printables

 

Earth Day from Spoonful

Activities, games, food

 

Earth Day Activities from DLTK

Crafts, games, printables and more…

 

50 Earth Day Activities for Kids from Tinkerlab

Activities to encourage children to create objects from natural and recycled materials and spend more time outdoors.

 

Earth Day from Family Education

Crafts, activities, projects, and lots more…

 

20 Earth Day Crafts and Activities for Kids from Housing a Forest

These look pretty interesting

 

The Greatest Earth Day Pages Ever! from Planet Pals

Information, activities, crafts, and more

 

I hope you have a wonderful and active Earth Day!

Gail


Plan for Earth Day with Outstanding Books


Plan for Earth Day with Outstanding Books

 

Earth Day is on April 22. Here are a bunch of books to help get you started thinking about and planning for how you will celebrate.


Plastic, Ahoy! Investigating the Great Pacific Garbage Patch by Patricia Newman, illustrated by Annie Crawley

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a collection of plastic—both large and tiny pieces that is floating in the Pacific Ocean. A team of researchers spent about three weeks at sea, investigating it. This book documents their work and their findings. I’ve been curious about the patch for some time and this book taught me a lot. This is a perfect book for young scientists and environmentalists!


Earth Day by Molly Aloian

With text and pictures, this book covers the reasons for Earth Day, its history and symbols, and ways it is celebrated.

 

One Well: The Story of Water on Earth by Rochelle Strauss, illustrated by Rosemary Woods

The text and paintings in this book combine beautifully to tell the history, workings, and complex issues surrounding Earth’s water. Written for older elementary and middle school students, this is an exceptional book.


EcoArt! by Laurie Carlson

This book has been around since 1993 and has a fantastic collection of Earth-friendly crafts. I’ve used ideas from it for many years and will continue to.

 

Let’s Celebrate Earth Day by Connie and Peter Roop, illustrated by Gwen Connelly

Using a question and answer format, this book gives lots of information about Earth Day. It includes history, important concepts, and good ideas for being good Earth citizens. The watercolor illustrations nicely support the text. This is a terrific book!

 

Earth Day—Hooray! by Stuart J. Murphy, illustrated by Renée Andriani

Three kids organize an aluminum can drive to earn money. They want to use the money to buy flowers for the local park. It’s a good story, plus it sneaks in a place value lesson.

 

Crinkleroot’s Guide to Giving Back to Nature by Jim Arnosky

I have just recently discovered the Crinkleroot series and I’m so glad I did! Each one is a little gem showing how to be good Earth citizens. This one gives lots of doable ways: feeding animals, planting animal-friendly plants, respecting animal habitats, and more. 

 

You Are the Earth by David Suzuki and Kathy Vanderlinden, illustrated by Wallace Edwards (sorry, no link)

David Suzuki is a scientist and the host of the TV show The Nature of Things. This book for older students (upper elementary and middle school) is full of information about air, water, fire, and more. I really like how it has lots of experiments that help show how many of the book’s concepts and ideas work.

 

Common Ground: The Water, Earth, and Air We Share by Molly Bang

The author starts with a simple story about a long-ago village and its commons where everyone’s sheep could graze. This story is used to show how overuse of each of Earth’s resources is like this village common. A simple story with a powerful message.

 

Planet Ark: Preserving Earth’s Biodiversity by Adrienne Mason, illustrated by Margot Thompson

This book compares Earth to the Bible story of Noah’s Ark. It stresses the importance of biodiversity (maintaining a wide variety of plant and animal species in their natural environments) for Earth’s survival. It covers many topics, including food webs, habitats, environmental threats, and the work of modern-day Noahs.

 

3 Pandas Planting by Megan Halsey

Starting with 12 Crocodiles: We’re carpooling, 11Tigers: We turn off our faucets, this basic book shows animals doing their part to take care of Earth. The illustrations have lots to look at.

 

Nature Recycles: How about You? by Michelle Lord, illustrated by Cathy Morrison

Do you think only humans recycle? Think again! sea urchins, hermit crabs, octopuses, beetles and other animals and insects recycle. I like this book’s  approach to the topic of recycling.


What are your ideas for Earth Day? Write them in the Comments Box!

Gail


Easter Games for Indoor, Outdoor and Online Fun


Easter Games for Indoor, Outdoor and Online Fun

 

One of the lovely things about Easter is the weather is getting nice and you just have to get outside. Here are some ideas for Easter Day fun.

 

8 Easter Games from Spoonful

indoor and outdoor games like Yarn Maze, Egg Scramble, Jelly Bean Trail

 

15 Easter Party Games for Children from Yahoo Voices

indoor and outdoor games like Easter Egg Bowling, Walk the Egg, Duck Walk Race

 

Squigly's Easter Games from Squigly’s Games

online games

 

Happy Easter from The Kidzpage

online games, puzzles and coloring, plus printable activities

 

Easter Games from A Kids Heart

online games and puzzles, scroll down for printable activities

 

Easter from Primary Games

online games and puzzles, plus jokes and coloring

 

Happy Easter!

Gail

 


Easter Crafts for Boosting Literacy Skills



Easter Crafts for Boosting Literacy Skills

Following directions is a get way to practice reading while having fun. And then you have something to show for it when you’re done! I hope these sites give you lots of good ideas.


 

CHURCH RELATED

Easter Resurrection Bible Craft from Smarty Pants Fun

Make a 3-D display. Coloring pages are also included.

 

Easter Crafts for Sunday School from Danielle’s Place

Crafts, cards, puppets…

 

Kids Easter Sunday School Activities from Sunday School Kids

Crafts for grades K-8

 

Christian Cross Crafts from DLTK

This site has several ideas for crosses.

 

 

NON- CHURCH RELATED

Easter Crafts for Kids from Better Homes and Gardens

Crafts, cards, puppets…

 

15 Fun Easter Crafts for Kids from Parent Map

Crafts, snacks, decorations…

 

34 Fun, Easy (and Cheap!) Easter Crafts for Kids from iVillage

A bunch of ways to use plastic eggs (love the first one!), paper tubes and other things lying around

 

10 Easy Easter Crafts for Kids from Parenting.com

Crafts, cooking, table decorations…

 

Easter Kids' Crafts and Activities from Martha Stewart

Crafts, food, games…

 

Easter Crafts from Kinder Art

Coloring eggs, crafts, food…


Easter Baskets from Spoonful

A bunch of ideas for making Easter baskets


 

Have a wonderful Easter!

Gail

 


Easter is Coming! Celebrate with Books for the Whole Family


Easter is Coming! Celebrate with Books for the Whole Family

 

Easter is April 20th this year—just two weeks away. Easter is such a wonderful holiday. I love the quiet celebration with family and church. It’s spring, or nearly so, and everything is starting to grow. Lovely.

 

FICTION

Pete the Cat: Big Easter Adventure by Kimberly and James Dean

The Easter Bunny asks Pete to help him find, paint, and hide some Easter eggs. So Pete puts on bunny ears and goes out to find eggs. He gets the eggs, plus more bunny parts to wear. A poster, stickers, and Easter cards are included.

 

Easter Bunny on the Loose by Wendy Wax, illustrations by Dave Garbot (sorry, no link)

Discover who took the Golden Egg by following the clues in this Where’s Waldo type book. The clues are all there, you just have to find them!


Bently & Egg by William Joyce

Bently is a young and musical frog who gets roped into egg-sitting for his friend Kack Kack the duck. Bently is not very impressed by the plain white egg so he paints it with a beautiful design. This makes it look like an Easter egg, which causes a string of adventures. This picture story is very sweet.

 

Sawdust Carpets by Amelia Lau Carling

The Lau Family has been invited to spend Easter with their cousins in Antigua, Guatemala. Though the Laus are Chinese and Buddhist, they love their relatives' celebration of Easter. The creation of spectacular sawdust carpets is one of the best parts. This is a beautiful book—it made me want to go to Guatemala to see the carpets and the procession they were part of.

 

Bunny’s Easter Egg by Anne Mortimer

Bunny is tired after spending the night hiding Easter eggs. There is still one left, but she is too tired. She brings it into her basket and goes to sleep. When it starts to crack, Bunny decides to look for someplace quieter – not an easy task. Be sure to look for the Easter eggs hiding on each page.

 

Piggy Bunny by Rachel Vail, illustrated by Jeremy Tankard

Liam the piglet is like any other piglet, except he wants to be the Easter Bunny. Even though most of his family thinks this is a crazy idea, Liam goes into training. Funny story and funny pictures!

 

The Birds’ Gift retold by Eric A. Kimmel, illustrated by Katya Krenina

A little girl discovers many golden birds caught in an early winter storm. The villagers take in the flock and care of them through most of the winter. When they return in the spring, the birds have something for the villagers. This is a retold folktale of the Ukrainian pysanky eggs.

 

NONFICTION

Easter Traditions around the World by M.J. Cosson, illustrated by Elisa Chavarri

Read about the Easter traditions in 12 countries, including Australia, Germany, Mexico, and Poland. Directions for coloring Easter eggs are also included.

 

Easter by Trudi Strain Trueit, illustrated by Benrei Huang

This book covers many parts of Easter: history, traditions, and foods. It also has Easter poems and songs.

 

The First Easter: The Story of Why We Celebrate Easter by Carol Heyer

Starting with his birth, this book is a simple retelling of Jesus' life and the events leading up to the first Easter. The painted illustrations beautifully support the text. It would make a terrific read-aloud.

 

My Very First Easter Story by Lois Rock, illustrated by Alex Ayliffe

The story of Easter is told simply, from Good Friday to Easter day. The attractive illustrations nicely support the story. The small size is perfectly suited for small hands.

 

Easter Sweets and Treats by Ruth Owen

This book is best for family cooking or an experienced older child. All the recipes are clearly written and look delicious. There 6 recipes: Easter Brunch Eggs, Easter Bunny Cookies, Carrot Cake, Easter Nest Cupcakes Homemade Easter Eggs and Deviled Easter Eggs. Enjoy!

 

The Easter Story by Brian Wildsmith

Brian Wildsmith is one of my favorite writer-illustrators. This book is absolutely beautiful. It tells the story of the last days of Jesus' life, the crucifixion, and the resurrection, as seen through the eyes of a small donkey. It is a perfect read aloud book.


I hope you have a Happy Easter!

Gail


 

Great Games, Crafts, and Puzzles for Bird Lovers


Great Games, Crafts, and Puzzles for Bird Lovers

 

Did you see Monday’s bird books? Here are games, puzzles, crafts, and coloring to go with them! Check them out for excellent literacy opportunities and fun!

 

GAMES AND PUZZLES

Bird Games and Videos from Learning Games for Kids

Videos, online games, and puzzles


Bird Puzzles from Jigzone

Lots of jigsaw puzzles

 

Mission: Migration from Audubon.org

Online game

 

 

CRAFTS AND COLORING

Bird Seed Bird Craft from All Kids Network

 

Feeding Wild Birds in Winter from The Crafty Crow

Several bird feeder projects

 

Paper Bag Crow or Raven Craft from DLTK

 

Bird Coloring Pages from DLTK

choose from cartoon or realistic type pictures

 

Curly Birds from Spoonful

I want to make these!

 

Nest o' Fluffy Chicks from Spoonful

very cute

 

Yay birds!

Gail


Expedition Everest: A Lofty Writing Project for Student Writers



Expedition Everest: A Lofty Writing Project for Student Writers

Today’s guest post is from Martin Waller’s Moonstone Class. The class is Year 5 (Grade 5), at Holy Trinity Rosehill Primary School in the United Kingdom.  Their blog is an online space where members of the class can share their learning and views with the rest of the world. The students have their own usernames and passwords so that they can create blog posts both in school and at home.

I loved following the class’s Mount Everest project. The knowledge and creativity of the students impressed me, as did their enthusiasm. I was delighted when Martin and his class agreed to write a post about the project.

 

Expedition Everest

In Y5 Moonstone Class we have been taking part in an exciting project called Expedition Everest. Our project was focused on the biggest mountain in the world – Mount Everest. We started our project by exploring facts about the mountain environment. We were then in contact with Ben Stephens who trekked up Mount Everest in 2007. Ben sent us a presentation about his expedition including some amazing photographs which we used as inspiration for our art work.

Milly commented, “I enjoyed creating art work based on the harsh environment of Everest!”

“I liked looking at the sunset over the summit of Everest,” added Evan.

We then wrote newspaper reports about Ben’s triumphant summit to Everest.

Jack said, “Expedition Everest was fun and exciting – I enjoyed learning about Base Camp and Camp IV before the summit to Everest.”

We were then very fortunate to be able to interview Tori James as part of our project. Tori was the youngest British women and first Welsh women to successfully summit Mount Everest. We watched videos of her trek and she kindly answered our questions. You can see our full interview at: http://moonstone.htrblogs.net/2014/02/02/y5-moonstone-interview-tori-james/

Boaz comment, “I enjoyed the videos of the explorers on the summit of Everest.”

We then moved onto writing vivid and figurative poetry about the ‘Mother of the Earth’ and Matthew said that he really enjoyed this part of the project! Owen found it really helpful to use the pictures from Ben Stephens when writing his poetry.

Mr Waller then organised a special Skype session with adventure cameraman Keith Partridge, who helped realise an 88-year-old promise by taking an Olympic gold medal to the summit of Everest. Keith kindly answered our questions about the harsh environment and what it was like to be at the “roof of the world.”

Amelia reflected, “I enjoyed taking part in the Skype session with a real Everest explorer.”

Friend of Y5 Moonstone Class, Gail Terp kindly recommended the book “The Hunt for the Yeti Skull” by Elizabeth Singer Hunt which we used as the basis for writing our own fiction work. Towards the end of our projects we created a class compilation of stories called “Expedition Everest: The Yeti Sightings” and have started to publish these on our class blog. Matthew said, “I really enjoyed creating my Yeti story set on Mount Everest.”

Expedition Everest was an exciting cross-curricular project which inspired us to learn more about the great outdoors whilst also improving our literacy and writing skills. We are very thankful to Gail Terp, Keith Partridge, Ben Stephens and Tori James for helping make our project so special.

 

Y5 Moonstone is a connected classroom at Holy Trinity Rosehill C.E. (V.A.) Primary School in the United Kingdom. We use technology to help us with our learning. You can find out more on Twitter and on our class blogs:

Class blog: http://moonstone.htrblogs.net
Twitter: @Y5Moonstone
Mr Waller’s Twitter: @MisterWaller

 

Many thanks to Mr. Waller and his talented students!

Gail


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