Best Back to School Ideas 🍏

Snow Day!

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Well it’s been cold here in FL for the past few days. I mean nothing compared to the rest of the country… but cold enough. Unfortunately, the rest of the country has been getting snow days left and right, while us Floridians are all like…

wait… where’s my gloves and scarf because it’s 55 degrees out and I’m freezing! 

Classroom snow day fun snowflake bentley

With all the snow day talk on the news, I knew I had to do something for my sweet seconds to help bring that snowy weather south a bit!. We started off the week learning all about the “Snowflake Man” himself, Snowflake Bentley.

 main idea and details interactive anchor chart with snowflake bentley
After reading the text through several times, we worked to ID the main idea of the text. I wrote our thoughts on our Main Idea and Details Interactive Anchor chart. Then, I challenged the students to think about the text and write two details that supported our main idea.
(click here to see more ideas for Snowflake Bentley)
snowflake bentley close reading activities- great activities for main idea and snow
We sorted through the sticky notes after each student had placed their details. As a class, we read each detail, decided if it belonged on our chart and then grouped them by idea. I love using the chart because it allows a very abstract idea to become hands on.
As we continued our learning about snow through the week, we also recorded our learning on our Interactive KWL.
KWL interactive anchor chart for snow. perfect for January
As our week continued, if we didn’t find an answer to a question, we took to the IPads to do a little research. My favorite was having the students explain why it rarely snows in sunny Florida. Words like equator and heat were all over their little explanations. #proudteacher!
So as our snow unit came to an end, I knew we’d have to have our own Florida style “Snow Day”
To help amp up the wintry feeling, I painted the windows of our classroom with tempera paint.
paint your windows like a winter wonderland to help transform your classroom into a winter wonderland snowflake bentley

Using a mixture of white and blue, I was able to make some decent looking snow banks and snowflakes. Not bad for a lady who’s lived in Florida for over 25 years! ;)As a fun writing activity to add to our “Snow Day”, we also completed this “Do You Wanna Build a Snowman?” Expository writing activity.

how to build a snowman activity

As a class, we brainstormed the step we’d have to take to make a snowman. Then, students used the steps we had brainstormed to write their own expository piece.

how to build a snowman activity

Once students finished their writing, they got to build their own snowman using some simple cut and paste pieces. You can grab this activity from my “Snow Days” Literacy Centers.

I also convinced my student teacher, Miss Perry, that we just had to get into character and dress up in our most wintry attire!

She was a great sport and donned a beanie and scarf! Oh, did I mention I am hosting a student teacher this semester? This poor girl doesn’t even know the mess that she has walked into… but so far, she’s fittin’ right in!

Of course no snow day can happen without some actual snow!

Well… almost actual snow…

Easy to make fake snow for snow day, stem snow day, snowflake bentley

This is seriously the EASIEST recipe ever! Just some baking soda and conditioner and BOOM!

Mix snow using foil pan

We used foil baking dishes to mix up our snow. We made enough for each table to have a baking dish to work with.  This stuff even feels “cold”!

To set up our space, we threw plastic table cloths over the students’ desks. Believe me when I tell you… it will get messy!

After setting a few ground rules: ie- no eating or throwing the snow…

It was time to play!

My seconds had a blast working to make their own snowmen…

classroom snowman

The kiddos used some left over classroom craft materials to accessorize their little buddies.

Some of the groups even pulled all their snow together and made larger snowmen.

snow ideas, fake snow, snow stem activities, snowflake bentley

The kiddos also worked to make igloos…

and other icy creations.

Clean up was pretty easy. No seriously! I’m not kidding!

The kiddos worked to get as much of the “snow” back into the pan. What didn’t make it, was rolled up and thrown away with the plastic tablecloths. Some snow did end up on the floor. The snow that landed on the tile was just swept up. The little bit that landed on the carpet was vacuumed away.  Oh… and my room smelled freshly washed for the next few days! LOL!

This was such a fun way to end our Snow unit! You have to try it!

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Hi, I'm Leigh.

The Applicious Teacher is all about creating hands-on and engaging lessons that align with the standards while still having time for your life. This is your place for ideas, tips, and resources for the REAL teacher!


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