I wanted to share a book that I read to my students that goes along with clouds!
I read this book last week and the kids LOVED it. I just love Tomie de Paola! I know his books were written in the 70s but they are wonderful books that kids still love today!!
When I read the book, I had the students sitting on the carpet in front of me. I read it showing them most of the pictures until I got to the part where Tomie describes the types of clouds. Then I covered up the pictures and read his description (minus the name of the cloud) and had them write the name of the cloud on their whiteboards. They loved it! So simple, yet effective in doing a quick assessment of who knew the types of clouds (after having taught about it for three days). They did great!
The book also goes into more types of clouds than we need to know, but that was great for my learners that what to know more!!
After we read the book, we made clouds out of cotton balls!!
We also made clouds with shaving cream. I was going to link this up to Joanne's Sparking Student Motivation, but I ran out of time yesterday between soccer games and my son's 5th birthday!! But I'll tell you this. If you want kids engaged, fast, pull out some shaving cream!! They were all about it!! One student came up and said, "We used shaving cream once when I was in Pre-k!" Pre-k?? Well, then this is definitely not the norm!
Then, I heard a group of students saying, "4th grade is the best ever!!" Hey, if all it takes is some shaving cream, bring it on!!!
Warning though- it makes the room smell...majorly. Pick a shaving cream that smells appealing to you...because it will smell like that for a loooooooong time. And, it's very messy. Less is more. The more you put on their desk, the harder it is for them to get it off. I MAY have had some that got on the carpets...don't tell our head custodian! He'd kill me!!
At the end of the day, one of my students from last year stopped in and she started sniffing as she walked towards me to give me a hug. Then she said, "You did the clouds with shaving cream today, didn't you? That was so awesome last year!!" Then she sighed. Awwwwwwww!! I think it made an impression...and obviously the sense of smell triggers some memories!! ;O)
I'm pretty sure my assistant principal wasn't all that pleased when the kids were walking down the halls, hands up, covered in shaving cream (dripping on the floors- oops...yeah, pretty sure the head custodian is loving me these days- and I couldn't even hide it because it was all in the trash!!). Oh well. Who knows what the bathroom looked like when they were done! I don't even want to know. Ignorance is bliss!!
Plus, it cleans the desks...right??? I mean, that's what I tell myself...we were learning, having fun, and cleaning the desks...how much better can it get?? (We're still ignoring the spots on the carpet...)
Anyway, reading The Cloud Book is a great way to kick all of this off!! We're going to read Cloud Dance in the next week or so (which we talked about HERE) in language arts as a follow up. But, I'm happy to say, they know their clouds. In every possible way.
I also have them do a project from home where they take pictures of the three types of clouds and then make a visual representation of it. It could be a poster. But last year, my kids were obsessed with Powerpoint so they made Powerpoints of their pictures and then had typed the descriptions of the clouds. I'm interested to see what I get this year. One of my students told me that he was in the middle of the soccer game and saw a cirrus cloud, which he felt was scarce so he stopped on the field and told his mom to get a picture real quick with her phone. I bet that coach (and mom) are loving me right now. I'm feeling lots of love about the clouds unit... ;O)
I figure, we see clouds every day, why not make it real? And, it's just plain fun. And easy. So, why not??
I hope you'll give this oldie, but goodie book a try! Even if you don't teach about clouds, it's a fun book.
Next week, we'll be working on a writing piece about clouds. My kids did a great job on the "If I were a raindrop" piece that we did a few weeks ago when we were working on the water cycle so I can't wait to see what they write about with clouds. I'm thinking I'm going to give them a few choices. I'll let you know how it goes once I get it worked out!!
Have a great day! And enjoy the clouds...maybe you'll see a picture in them!!
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