Space Adventures

The galaxy is full of wonder….limitless possibilities…..endless freedom……Kind of like childhood right? Bringing the solar system to your students is a way to give them a hands on experience with something that feels….well…..very distant. Our students have the BIGGEST questions about life’s biggest mysteries…and it’s not our job to provide the answer, but instead to give them the chance to explore, gather information, investigate….and Blast Off!!

Intergalactic Sensory Bin! Black water beads, black dyed water, glitter and planets…..how can you resist putting your hands in that!?

 

3….2……1…..Blast Off! Building these name rockets was…..well….a blast!

 

What an awesome invitation to create! When students walked in they were invited to mix the colors in the shaving cream to create their own planets! Afterwards they used circular paper to make planet prints!

Paper Plate Planet Art! Each child explored the colors of our earth by making their own version of our world!

 

DIY Constellations! Being inspired by the sky to recreate famous constellations or make your own is such a great way to practice fine motor skills!

 

I love this small world invitation for individual students! Using black sand, glitter, rocks and planet cards students can explore sensory elements while also exploring the solar system!

Chicka Chicka…

Creating opportunities for children to explore and interact with letters is incredibly important, but they also need to have meaning and context during this exploration. If we just throw a bunch of letters in front of children and expect them to care about them…..were kidding ourselves……

However, when we connect them to an experience, suddenly, there is meaning. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom By Bill Martin Jr and John Archambault does that ENTIRE job for us. The story personifies the alphabet and invites the reader to care about their safety and comfort as they fall from the tree and search for loved ones. Its simple. Its catchy. Its rhythmic. And it lends itself perfectly to a bunch of literacy extensions in the classroom!

Check out some of the fun ways we used Chicka Chicka Boom Boom to explore and engage with the alphabet.

Using colored table on a magnetic surface we were able to create this Coconut tree for children to re-tell the story! Simple alphabet magnets were an easy way to allow children to manipulate and move the letters!

 

These SUPER inexpensive foam alphabet puzzles are kinda lame as puzzles……but they really do make the best stencils! They are easier to hold and no so wiggly on the paper, our students love using them to practice those fine motor skills!

 

These alphabet blocks are fun to stack and build with, but they are even better for making prints in Kinetic Sand! Our students love exploring the different letters they can make by pressing them into the sand!

 

Alphabet Soup! These personal sensory bins using colored water and colored water beads (we buy them in already separated color packs) are SO much fun to explore! Just add the foam letters from the puzzles in the previous picture, and start searching for letters! The laminated coconut trees on the table added another element and encouraged students to retell the story!

 

We love using a story to encourage a fun transition game! After students read this story at circle time, the teacher asked each child to come add a letter to the Coconut Tree before heading to the sink to wash their hands for lunch! Each child took their turn carefully adding a letter to the tree!

 

What fun ways have you used this wonderful story in your classroom? Is it a favorite with your littles? We would love to hear your ideas!