Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Holiday Fun

I'm back, baby! Wow, the flu really had me down, but I am finally feeling like myself again. A few people told me how much they enjoyed the turkey lesson. I do something similar with a different grade level during the winter holiday weeks. This lesson can be done with bibliography or with locating different types of sources. You could even create holiday trivia questions and teach searching skills with it. The possibilities for skills are pretty wide open.

Once you teach the skill portion of the lesson, give each team the option of collecting flames for a menorah or parts of a Santa Claus. I found a template where Santa is broken up into parts: a head, 2 arms, 2 legs, and a body. How many parts you use depends on how many tasks you want the students to complete.

You could alter this in a number of ways---you could break up a template for a Snowman or a gingerbread man as well.

I'll talk about the rest of the lesson as a source search. I make a basket of winter/holiday related topics: snow, blizzards, evergreen trees, menorah,
Santa Claus, etc. The students pick one topic and try to locate one related source from each branch of the research hierarchy: general encyclopedia, specialized reference, non-fiction books, databases, and websites. Each time they locate a source, they bring up the required information from our district's presearch sheet and then they receive a body part or a menorah flame. Once they have collected all of their pieces, it is on to decorating. We have the class vote on the most beautiful menorah and the most creative Santa. They each earn a little prize for their efforts. We then use their creations to decorate the front windows of the library. Free and easy holiday decor! Happy Thanksgiving to all!

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