Constitution Day


Constitution Day is required by Federal law (Public Law 108-447) to be celebrated by all publicly funded educational institutions on September 17th, the day that the Constitutional Convention signed the Constitution in 1787.  Before this law was enacted in 2004, the holiday was known as “Citizenship Day”.  Now, it’s known as “Constitution Day and Citizenship Day” to be exact, and this holiday also recognizes those who have become U.S. citizens.

Here is a great assortment of activities and links to videos, lesson plans, games, words to rap, a slide show, a timeline, and informational sites:

 

Happy Valentine’s Day from WordWorld: Free Downloads & Video

Our whole family loves WordWorld! We were first introduced to it when our daughter and son-in-law let their baby start watching it when he was a year old. WordWorld was the only show or video he would watch. He loved it! And the great thing is that he started learning his alphabet, letter sounds, and started reading words from watching this excellent children’s educational programming.
WordWorld is wishing everyone a Happy Valentine’s Day!  Here is their Valentine for you:

Valentine’s Day DVDs are available at Target, Toys R Us, Amazon & select retailers nationwide.

Watch “My Fuzzy Valentine” Monday, February 14th, on PBS KIDS.  Check your local listings.

Now Featuring: Make “Valentine’s Day Pouches” to Hold Cards & Treats



Christi at The Frugal Novice developed a simple craft for her young children.   Check out her easy directions for making homemade Valentine’s Day pouches that are adorable!   By the way, the cute little boy in the picture just happens to be our grandson!

Need more Valentine’s Day ideas?  Check out these:

Valentine’s Day: Origin, Activities & Books for Children


Science Fact: Difference Between Sweet Potatoes & Yams

Although sweet potatoes and yams are both flowering plants (angiosperms), they do not have a botanical relationship.  Here are some facts from the Library of Congress:

  • Sweet potatoes have two embryonic seed leaves (dicot).
  • Yams have one embryonic seed leaf (monocot).
  • Sweet potatoes come from the Morning Glory family (Convolvulacea).
  • Yams come from the Yam family (Dioscoreaceae).
  • Sweet potatoes can be either firm or soft.  The soft variety is what we call “yams” in the United States.
  • Yams are starchier and drier than sweet potatoes and are native to Africa and Asia.

Firm sweet potatoes were introduced in the U.S. before the soft variety.  When the soft variety became available, they were called “yams” to differentiate between the two types.  Today, the USDA requires that potatoes with the label of “yam” also have “sweet potato” on the label because they are really sweet potatoes and not yams.

Now Featuring: Make a Candy Corn Wreath

Credit: Free pictures from acobox.com
Christi at Frugal Novice made the cutest Candy Corn Wreath with her two little boys.  She found this project  from Women’s Day.  This is an excellent craft project for a family or for a class. If this is done with a class, two or three students could come up at a time and glue on their candy corn. Be sure and have extra candy corn for nibbling!

(By the way, Christi just happens to be our daughter, and the two little boys just happen to be our adorable grandsons!)

Constitution Day, September 17

Credit: Free pictures from acobox.com
The Constitution begins with three famous words, “We the people,”  and was signed on September 17, 1787  in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  It was signed by the Founding Fathers and because of the Constitution, we enjoy many of the rights and freedoms we have today.  Here are some interesting facts:

  1. The first national Thanksgiving Day was originally created by George Washington to give thanks for the Constitution.
  2. The U.S. Constitution is the oldest and shortest of all the national constitutions.
  3. Benjamin Franklin was the oldest delegate.  He was 81 years old at the time.
  4. When Pearl Harbor was bombed, the Constitution was moved to Fort Knox for safekeeping.  Now it is at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.
  5. There have been 27 amendments to the Constitution out of the more than 11,000 that have been introduced in Congress.

Free Lesson Plans:

Free Online Games:

Free Online Materials:

Videos:

Earth Day Activities

Here are a couple of resources from this site plus a Word World video clip and a story from Starfall about Earth Day that are available to help celebrate Earth Day this year.  Just click on these four links:

 

 

 

  • Starfall:  A story about Earth Day

Easter Activities for Children


It’s easy and fun to make cupcakes that are inviting to eat. Just make your favorite cupcake recipe and frosting (or use canned). Start with white frosting and color part of it green for a “grass” effect since not everyone likes coconut (which can be dyed green for a real grass effect). Then top with your favorite Easter candies such as jelly beans, decorative marshmallow flowers on toothpicks, Easter sprinkles, etc.

Go here for more information about Easter: Origin, Activities and Books for Children on this site.

Valentine Books & Activities for Children

Here are a couple of reviews on Valentine’s Day books. For more info about Valentine’s Day on this site, go to Valentine’s Day: Origin, Activities & Books for Children

BOOK REVIEWS:

  • Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch by Eileen Spinelli.  Good for ages 3-8.  Story about how an anonymous Valentine card changes an unsociable man into a friend who wants to help his neighbors and also who appreciates them.
  • Roses are Pink, Your Feet Really Stink by Diane de Groat.  Gilbert gives two not-so-nice Valentine cards and learns something about forgiveness.

CRAFTS:

Kids’ Recipe: “Silly” Muffins

Here is an easy and fun recipe for kids to make. It’s also a great time to teach measuring.
INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup of your favorite ice cream (not ice milk)
  • 1 cup self rising flour

Let the ice cream sit out at room temperature until completely melted but still cold.  Stir in the flour.  Do not overstir.   Spoon into greased muffin tin.  Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.  Makes 6 muffins.

Thanksgiving: Activities & Books for Children

We made the turkey pictured below when our son was in kindergarten.   His “homework” was a family project where everyone in the family had to contribute to the making of this turkey.   Well, as you can imagine, we  have used it to decorate for Thanksgiving as part of our family tradition for over a dozen years now.  Amazingly, the cereal is still in great shape.

alans-turkey-resized.jpg

ORIGIN:

The colonists celebrated their first Thanksgiving in 1621 to give thanks to God for their harvest, and the Wampanoag tribe were the native Americans who celebrated with the colonists.  This took place at Plymouth Plantation.

Abraham Lincoln is the president who decided that Thanksgiving would fall on the last Thursday of November.

ACTIVITIES:

  • Have student work with their family to decorate a turkey picture such as the one pictured above.  Glue the turkey onto poster board and cut out the turkey shape, or better yet, print the turkey out on card stock.  Color and decorate with ribbon, buttons, cereal, etc.  Make sure every family member adds something to the turkey. This turkey will probably be used by the family for many years to decorate for Thanksgiving.    A great addition to this family fun project would be to write what each family member is thankful for along the feathers of the turkey.
  • Have student trace their hand to make a turkey.  The thumb is the head of the turkey.  The four fingers are the feathers.  Draw turkey legs on the bottom and finish adding the details of the turkey.  In the middle of the palm, write “I am thankful for…” and then on each finger name something the student is thankful for.
  • Trace students hands on red, orange, and yellow pieces of construction paper.  Cut them out.  Curl the fingers just a little bit on the ends.  Overlap the hands to form the body of a turkey and glue onto cardboard.  Draw a turkey head and turkey feet to go with the body.  This can be a small turkey to fit onto a piece of construction paper, a medium size turkey to fit onto a piece of poster board, or a very large turkey to fit onto a long sheet of bulletin board paper.
  • Have students decorate Pillsbury Turkey Sugar Cookies for a fun turkey project.  Use icing for the “glue.”  Glue 6-8 pieces of Candy Corn along the top edge of the cookie with the candy pointing downward.  Glue 2 M&Ms in the middle of the cookie for the eyes.  Use a small tube of icing to form the beak underneath the eyes (a small v-shape).  Use the icing to make turkey feet at the bottom of the cookie.

INTERESTING TURKEY FACTS:

  • The turkey was first domesticated in Mexico and Central America.
  • A female turkey is called a hen.
  • The sound a female turkey makes is called a cluck.
  • A male turkey is called a tom.
  • The sound a male turkey makes is called a gobble.
  • The skin that hangs from a turkey’s neck is called a wattle.
  • A mature turkey has 3,500 feathers.
  • Wild turkeys can run 25 miles per hour.
  • Wild turkeys can fly up to 55 miles per hour.
  • Minnesota produces the most turkeys annually.
  • Benjamin Franklin lobbied to make the turkey the national symbol.
  • Approximately 90% of American homes eat turkey on Thanksgiving.
  • The best way to defrost a frozen turkey is in the refrigerator.

CHILDREN’S BOOKS:

  • Thanksgiving by Miriam Nerlove.  Good for ages 3-6.  Has not only a brief overview of the first Thanksgiving feast but also a modern-day family’s visit to Grandma’s house for a celebration.
  • Thanksgiving Is For Giving Thanks (Reading Railroad Book Series) by Margaret Sutherland.  Good for ages 3-6.   A child tells everything he is thankful for.
  • Dora’s Thanksgiving (Dora the Explorer Series) by Sarah Willson.  Good for ages 3-7.  Find out what Dora is thankful for.
  • Just So Thankful (Little Critter Series)  by Mercer Mayer.  Good for ages 3-7.  Little Critter is jealous of things his rich friend has but then learns what to truly be thankful for.
  • Thanksgiving:  A Harvest Celebration by Julie Stiegemeyer.  Good for ages 4-10.  This is a book with beautiful illustrations.  It emphasizes the faith of the characters.
  • Thanks for Thanksgiving by Julie Markes.   Good for ages 4-7.   Children tell about the people and things they are thankful for.  Beautiful illustrations.
  • The Night Before Thanksgiving by Natasha Wing.  Good for ages 4-8.   “Twas the night before Thanksgiving when…”
  • Thanksgiving on Thursday (Magic Tree House Series #27) by Mary Pope Osborne.  Good for ages 6-9.  Jack and Annie experience the first Thanksgiving with the Pilgrims and Indians.

Teaching Older Kids About 9-11

This site, National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center, contains the following  information:

  • 9-11 History
  • Exploring 9-11:  The World Before & After
  • Timeline of Events
  • Origins & Impacts
  • Explore the designs and learn about the planning of the museum
  • Photo Albums of the Memorial & Museum
  • Growing collection of artifacts & oral histories
  • Education Resources (see below)

This site, Education Resources for Teachers & Students, contains the following information:

  • For high school educators:  a discussion guide and activities to download
  • 9-11:  Stories of Survival and loss
  • The Spirit of Volunteerism:  9-11 and Beyond  (a short film)
  • Teaching Guide with take-home pages to download
  • Scholastic Kid Reporter Articles

Video: September 11 Memorial Video Tribute

Cinco de Mayo: Origin, Activities, & Books for Children

cinco-de-mayo-4-25-09

Although many people have this misconception, Cinco de Mayo is not Mexican Independence Day which is in September.  Cinco de Mayo actually commemorates the victory of the Mexican army over the French army at the Battle of Pueblo on May 5, 1862.  It is a significant victory because the French had not been defeated for almost 50 years and the Mexicans were outnumbered almost two-to-one, so the battle was not in favor of the Mexican army.  Also, it is a significant battle because it was the last time a foreign country invaded the Americas.

ACTIVITIES:

  • Have an activity center with Mexican dresses, pinatas, and other items.  Place books about Cinco de Mayo in the center.
  • Have a pinata party where the children take turns trying to break the pinata and release all the candy.  Pinatas can be bought at some Mexican restaurants such as Pulidos or at a party supply store.
  • Make a pinata with paper mache.
  • Let kids make bean burritos.  Have soft flour tortillas already warmed.  Mix water with a can of refried beans to make an easily spread consistency.  Let kids spread refried beans on their tortilla, sprinkle with shredded cheese, and roll up.  Enjoy eating!
  • Have kids learn how to count to ten in Spanish.  Play Spanish Bingo by called out numbers in Spanish and having numbers 1-10 on Bingo cards.

CHILDREN’S BOOKS:

  • Cinco de Mayo by Kate Torpie.  Full color photographs, history & customs, directions for making a pinata, and a recipe.
  • Cinco de Mayo:  Celebrating the Traditions of Mexico by Diane Hoyt-Goldsmith.  Great book with nice, large illustrations.  Book explains history, traditional dances, dress, and food of this celebration.
  • Cinco de Mayo (Holidays and Festivals) by Alice K. Flanagan.  Covers the history, symbols, and customs of the holiday.  Beautiful illustrations, interesting facts, and additional resources are included in this book.
  • Cinco de Mayo (Read About Holidays) by Mary Dodson Wade and Nanci R. Vargus.  Scholastic.
  • Cinco de Mayo:  Yesterday and Today by Maria Christina Urrutia.  Beautiful illustrations.  Historical references.

Earth Day: Origin, Activities & Books for Children


Earth Day was founded by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson in 1970 as a day to teach about the environment.  It is celebrated on April 22 in the U.S., and many countries around the world now celebrate Earth Day.  It occurs in the spring in the northern hemisphere and in the fall in the southern hemisphere.  In 1990, 200 million people around the world participated in Earth Day which boosted awareness about recycling.

ACTIVITIES:

  • Plant a small tree sapling at school or in the yard at home.
  • Have children plant seeds in Styrofoam cups and water them as needed.  When plants get big enough, tranplant outdoors.
  • Have a newspaper drive and have children bring newspapers.  Class or student that brings the most gets a certificate or some reward.
  • Have an aluminum can drive and have children bring soda cans that have been rinsed out with water.
  • Take a field trip to a recycling center.
  • Have a guest speaker from a recycling center.
  • Have children sign a pledge that they will turn off the water while brushing their teeth so they won’t waste water.
  • Collect used clothing to donate to a charity.
  • Have children bring items from home that aren’t used anymore (and might be thrown away).  Have a brainstorming session for ideas of ways to reuse the item in a different way.  Think “out of the box.”
  • Decorate a large box to use as a recycling container for paper.
  • Earth Day Birthday by Pattie Schnetzler contains activities for kids.
  • Earth Day Crafts by Carol Gnojewski.

CHILDREN’S BOOKS:

  • Earth Day by Margaret McNamara.  Good for ages 4-6.  Child learns that even small ideas can help a lot.
  • Earth Day by Trudi Strain Trueit.  Good for ages 6-7.  Scholastic Books.
  • Earth Day by Linda Lowery.  Good for ages 7-9.  Tells about Earth Day in 1970 & 1990.  Discusses pollution, environmental destruction, and wasting of natural resources.
  • Earth Day – Hooray! by Stuart J. Murphy.  Good for ages 7-12.  Teaches how important it is to take care of the earth, whether by recycling cans or planting flowers.
  • Dora Celebrates Earth Day! (Dora the Explorer Series) by Emily Sollinger.  Good for ages 3-7.  Dora finds simple things to do at home that helps the planet.
  • Earth Day Birthday by Pattie Schnetzler.  Good for ages 4-10.  Can be read or sung to the “Twelve Days of Christmas” as it tells about 12 North American species in their natural habitats.  Includes suggestions for Earth Day activities.  Great illustrations!

CHILDREN’S DVD’S:

  • RECYCLING / The Earth at Risk by Schlessinger Media.  Good for grades 5 and up.

TEACHING ABOUT EARTH DAY – The Three “R’s”: Recycle, Reuse, & Reduce


* RECYCLE – use a recycling bin which is placed out by the curb on trash day or check on locations of recycling stations in your area

  1. Plastics – Look on the bottom of the plastic container and find the triangle with a number inside of it (check with your area to see what numbers they recycle).
  2. Glass – Clear glass (some areas take colored glass)
  3. Paper – Newspapers, phone books, etc. (some areas take cardboard)
  4. Plastic grocery bags – Usually have to be taken to a grocery store

* REUSE – some things can be used again

  1. Donate – Give things to charity.
  2. Hand-me-downs – Give good clothes to someone who can use them.
  3. Reuse paper grocery bags
  4. Reuse plastic cereal bags – Line the bottom of paper trash bags so they doesn’t leak. Use them for chicken bones, etc., to help contain the smell.
  5. Reuse gift bags – Just make sure you don’t give a bag to the person who gave it to you.

* REDUCEReduce the amount of natural resources that you use.

  1. Reduce paper – Read the newspaper online and help save trees.
  2. Reduce gasoline – Plan errands efficiently so that the least amount of gasoline is used.   Walk, ride a bike, or car pool when possible.
  3. Reduce wattage – Use fluorescent light bulbs that are energy efficient.
  4. Reduce heating & cooling – Set the thermostat a few degrees warmer in the summer and use fans.  Set the thermostat a few degrees cooler in the winter and wear a sweater if you need to.
  5. Reduce water – Use water-efficient shower heads and take shorter showers.  Only use the dishwasher or clothes washer when you have a full load.  A full dishwasher saves water versus washing by hand.  TURN OFF THE WATER WHILE BRUSHING TEETH.  A lot of water is wasted just from this habit alone.

Teaching About Easter: Origin, Activities and Books for Children

2nd-sd-card-easter-pic-2-17-09-0011

Easter is a Christian celebration and originated as a feast day.  Jesus was resurrected from the dead three days after his crucifixion, and many Christians celebrate his resurrection on Easter Sunday.  Easter occurs on the first Sunday after the Paschal Full Moon which is the first full moon on or after March 21.  The egg is a symbol for rebirth, specifically the rebirth of man.

The Easter bunny probably originated in Germany where it was part of a pagan celebration and first mentioned in German writings in the 1600’s.  The Easter bunny was brought to America by German settlers in the 1700’s and was eventually combined with the celebration of Easter.  According to their tradition, if children were good then the Easter bunny would lay brightly colored eggs in nests for the children.  The nests were replaced by Easter baskets as the tradition spread.

ACTIVITIES:

  • How to save dyed easter eggs
  • Decorate Easter cupcakes
  • Make little Easter baskets out of decorated Easter party cups.  Punch two holes at the very top on either side.  To make a handle, use a long, colored pipe cleaner and secure on either side of the cup at the top by inserting the end of the pipe cleaner into the punched hole.  Twist both ends of the pipe cleaner onto the cup.  Fill with Easter basket grass.
  • Play Easter Egg Toss by trying to toss plastic Easter eggs (ones that stay closed) into an empty Easter egg basket that is several feet away.
  • Sing “The Bunny Hop” song.

CHILDREN’S BOOKS:

  • Berenstain Bears and the Real Easter Eggs by Berenstain.  Mama Bear teaches the bear cubs about rebirth and life.
  • Easter by Gail Gibbons.  Explains the significance and traditions of Easter.
  • Easter Bugs by David A. Carter.  Discover much more than eggs on an Easter egg hunt.  Discover all sorts of bugs!
  • The Easter Story by Patricia Pingry.  Explains the reason for celebrating Easter.
  • The Night Before Easter by Natasha Wing.   Written in the style of Clement Moore’s classic poem.
  • The Story of the Easter Bunny by Catherine Tegen.   A legend about how the easter bunny got his job of painting eggs.   According to the story, the job originally belonged to an older couple.
  • Where Are Baby’s Easter Eggs? by Karen Katz.   Preschoolers and toddlers will enjoy lifting the flaps to find the eggs.

CHILDREN’S DVD:

  • The Easter Story Read-A-Long Sing-A-Long DVD by Nest Learning System.  Spanish version available.  (Good for ESL)


St. Patrick’s Day: Origin, Activities & Books for Children

WHY WEAR GREEN?

Actually, “St. Patrick’s Blue,” a dark blue, was the original color associated with St. Patrick for a long time.  The phrase “the wearing of the green” became popular and was associated with wearing a green shamrock.  Also, green is the color associated with Ireland.  The popular phrase and showing allegiance to Ireland probably influenced the change from wearing blue to wearing green on St. Patrick’s Day which occurred around the 1750’s.  Today, if you are caught not wearing green, you will most likely be pinched!

As I was growing up, I would always try to remember to wear green to school so I wouldn’t be pinched!  I forgot one year, and the teacher pinned a piece of green paper on me.  When I got a little older, I realized, “Hey, I have green eyes so I always have on green!”  I was rarely pinched after that!  So…all of us who have green eyes can point to them if someone tries to pinch us!

ORIGIN OF ST. PATRICK’S DAY:

St. Patrick’s Day originated somewhere around the 400’s as a religious holiday in Ireland.  Nowadays, it is celebrated as a public holiday in the United States, Australia, Great Britain, Canada, and New Zealand to a large extent.  There are many parades associated with the celebration.  In the United States, the first public celebration took place in Boston in the 1700’s.

ACTIVITIES & CRAFTS:

  • Have children cut out 3 green hearts, all the same size.  Glue the hearts together to make a shamrock.  Cut out a simple green stem and glue to the shamrock.
  • Have children trace their hands on different colors of construction paper to make a large rainbow on a wall in the classroom.
  • Have children use colored circle stickers to make a rainbow.
  • Have each child paint a smooth stone with green paint and glue green felt on the bottom to make a Blarney Stone paper weight.
  • Buy medium-large sized, plain sugar cookies or bake them.  Let kids decorate their cookie with a rainbow by using tubes of colored icing.  Or put a solid color of icing such as light blue to make the sky and then let kids make a rainbow out of M&Ms.
  • Serve Rainbow Jello Dessert (actually called Ribbon Jello Dessert).  You could add another layer or two of color to make it look like a rainbow.
  • St. Patrick’s Day Crafts by Carol Gnojewski.  Good for ages 8-9.  (10 easy crafts with pictures, directions, and traceable patterns)

CHILDREN’S BOOKS:

  • Good Luck!:  A St. Patrick’s Day Story by Joan Holub.  Good for toddlers and preschoolers.  (illustrates concept of parades)
  • St. Patrick’s Day Countdown by Saline Yoon.  Good for toddlers and preschoolers.
  • It’s St. Patrick’s Day by Rebecca Gomez.  Good for ages 4-6 and ESL.
  • St. Patrick’s Day Alphabet by Beverly Barras Vidrine.  Good for ages 4-8.
  • Luckiest St. Patrick’s Day Ever! by Teddy Slater.  Good for ages 4-8.  (illustrates concept of parades)
  • Shamrock Scare (Scooby-Doo!) by Courtney Tyo.  Good for ages 4-8.  (“Picture Clue” book that uses a rebus to teach words)
  • St. Patrick’s Day by Mari C. Schuh.  Good for ages 4-8.
  • That’s What Leprechauns Do by Eve Bunting.  Good for ages 4-12.  (great illustrations by award winning illustrator, Emily Arnold McCully)
  • Fine St. Patrick’s Day by Susan Wojciechowski.  Good for ages 5-8.  (great story of generosity versus greed)
  • Night Before St. Patrick’s Day by Natasha Wing.  Good for ages 5-8.  (story is in verse like Twas the Night Before Christmas)
  • St. Patrick’s Day by Gail Gibbons.  Good for ages 5-8.  (the story of Patrick’s life, how this day is celebrated, and six legends)
  • St. Patrick’s Day in the Morning by Eve Bunting.  Good for ages 5-8.  (illustrates concept of parades)
  • St. Patrick’s Day by Carmen Bredeson & Don L. Curry.  Good for ages 6-7.  (Scholastic – gives a little history of St. Patrick’s Day)
  • Green Gravy by Beverly Lewis.  Good for ages 7-10.  (great author)
  • Shamrocks, Harps, and Shillelaghs by Edna Barth.  Good for ages 8-12.  (explains the legends and historical facts of St. Patrick’s Day)
  • Let’s Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by Peter & Connie Roop.  Good for ages 8-11.  (question and answer format about the history and how St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated)

CHILDREN’S DVD’S:

  • American Cultures for Children:  Irish-American Heritage by Schlessinger Media .  Good for grades K-4.  Presents Irish immigration to America, history and customs,  how to say some Gaelic words, Irish dances, how to make a Celtic harp, a folktale, a folk song for children to sing.  Features Phylicia Rashad (from the Cosby Show).
  • Holidays for Children: St. Patrick’s Day by Schlessinger Media.  Good for grades K-4.   Gives history, brief biography on St. Patrick,  info on leprechauns and how to make a hand puppet, and festive celebrations.  A teacher’s guide comes with it and is also available online.

Teaching About Presidents Day

Presidents Day (also Presidents’ Day) is known as Washington’s Birthday and is celebrated in February on the third Monday.  The reason the celebration of his birthday was moved to the third Monday in 1971 was to simplify the calendar.

Many people celebrate both Washington and Lincoln’s birthdays or all of the presidents’ birthdays on Presidents Day, but it was originally instituted to celebrate George Washington’s birthday alone.  However, it is convenient to celebrate more than one president on that day and most people do that.

CHILDREN’S BOOKS ON PRESIDENTS:

  • So You Want to Be President? by Judith St. George.  (2001 Caldecott Medal Award Winner)  Great for ages 8-12.
  • Our Country’s Presidents:  All You Need to Know About the Presidents, from George Washington to Barack Obama by Ann Bausum.  Great for ages 9-12.
  • You’re Kidding!  Incredible Facts About the Presidents by Elizabeth Koehler-Pentacoff.  Great for ages 8-12.
  • Don’t Know Much About the Presidents by Kenneth C. Davis.

CHILDREN’S DVD’S & VIDEOS:

  • Presidents Day DVD ( Holidays for Children DVD Series)  by Library Video Company
  • Presidents 2-DVD Special – Abraham Lincoln and George Washington by Nest Learning System

MORE INFORMATION ON WASHINGTON & LINCOLN:

Valentine’s Day: Origin, Activities & Books for Children

Valentine’s Day has been celebrated for many, many years.  I remember when I was a child, a relative told me about her childhood when one of her classmates stole her Valentine cards that she was going to pass out.  As a child (and now too), I thought that was sad for someone to do that.   That happened back in the 1920’s, so that just goes to show how long children have been passing out Valentine’s Day cards at school.

ORIGIN OF VALENTINE’S DAY:

The first recorded mention of Valentine’s Day was by Geoffrey Chaucer in 1382 when he wrote about “Volantynys Day.”  Later in 1400, a High Court of Love was established in Paris on Valentine’s Day.  Modern Valentine’s Day, as we know it, was celebrated in the 1840s, and Valentine cards made from paper lace were mass produced as early as 1847.

ACTIVITIES:

  • Make Valentine’s Day cards for parents or someone special using paper lace doilies and construction paper.  Talk about how over one hundred and fifty years ago people made paper lace cards.
  • Make a Valentine’s Day Zoo.  Using all different sizes of heart shaped cut-outs, let the students glue them together to make different animals.
  • Make or buy heart shaped sugar cookies.  Let children decorate their edible Valentine cards.
  • Have children make up their own Valentine poem and write it on a heart shaped piece of paper.
  • Have children make Valentine Card Pouches (easy to make)

CHILDREN’S BOOKS:

  • Arthur’s Valentine by Marc Brown
  • Barney’s Happy Valentines’ Day by Gus davis & June Valentine-Ruppe
  • Bee My Valentine by Miriam Cohen
  • Clifford’s First Valentine’s Day by Norman Bridwell
  • Dinosaur Valentines by Liza Donnelly
  • Disney’s Winnie the Pooh’s Valentine by Bruce Talkington
  • It’s Valentine’s Day! (Blue’s Clues Series)  by Brooke Lindner
  • Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney
  • Guess Who Loves Blue! by Deborah Reber
  • Heart to Heart by George Shannon
  • Love, Splat by Rob Scotten
  • Nate the Great and the Mushy Valentine by Marjorie Weinman Sharmat
  • Pepper’s Valentine Surprise by Linda Bleck
  • Queen of Hearts by Mary Engelbreit
  • Richard Scarry’s Best Holiday Books Ever Be My Valentine! by Richard Scarry
  • Roses are Pink, Your Feet Really Stink by Diane de Groat
  • Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch by Eileen Spinelli
  • Too Many Valentines by Margaret McNamara
  • Valentine Cats by Jean Marzollo
  • Valentine Surprise by Corinne Demas
  • Valentine’s Day by Anne and Lizzy Rockwell   (good for ESL)

CHILDREN’S DVD’S & VIDEOS:

  • Valentine’s Day DVD  ( Holidays for Children DVD Series) by Library Video Company

BOOKS ABOUT THE COLOR RED: