Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Devloping Verbal Skills: Winter Trees

This week, our printable weekly activity highlights a strange plant. We use this fruit to teach math concepts. If you haven't signed up to receive these free activities, please do so in the box to the right.

Staying on the theme of plants, we know you talk with children about the ways plants, animals, and trees change with the seasons. Use the idea that some kinds of trees lose their leaves in the winter to help children describe nature and their response to it. If you have classroom windows or can go outside to see deciduous trees, ask children to tell about that type of tree. You can always show photos of these trees, too.  

Ask children to use their senses to talk about deciduous trees. Provide guiding questions such as: 
  • How does the tree look? 
  • Do you think this tree smells different in the winter (no buds, leaves, flowers, etc.)? 
  • Might the tree sound different when the wind blows through it? (Children should understand that since there are no leaves, there will not be a rustling sound). 
You can also have children compare their response to winter weather to a tree's response to the cold. People bundle up in layers of clothes while trees lose all of their leaves. Have children color a picture of a winter tree and then add themselves to it to show this difference. Feel free to use this drawing as the basis for your lesson:

Finally, one numeral that can be difficult for children is zero. Use this concept freely when talking about the number of leaves on a winter tree. "There are 0 leaves." Have children use the term in other fun ways in the classroom, too. "We see 0 monkeys in that tree!" Encourage families to say zero when discussing what children learned during the day.

Standards Alignment:
NAEYC - 2.D.03, 2.F.02, & 2.G.03
Head Start - VIII.B.1 & 2, X.A.1, & XI.B.1.

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