I wonder if the snow loves the trees and fields, that it kisses them so gently? And then it covers them up snug, you know, with a white quilt; and perhaps it says, “Go to sleep, darlings, till the summer comes again.” – Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
from “Mountains of Spices” by Hannah Hurnard
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Also known as the party corner.
I love this poem because it is humorous, relatable for the kids, and the language doesn’t get in the way of understanding the parts of a poem. This is especially important for ELs. If the language of the poem is accessible, they are able to focus on the academic specific language of meter, stress, and rhyme scheme. They are also able to move on from basic comprehension to analysis of the text.
Notes: the shapes around the rhyming words are how I scaffold to teaching rhyme scheme. The different shapes belong to specific “rhyming buddies”. The students are thrn able to transfer this to lettered rhyme scheme.
The only thing better than teaching a class of the cutest kindergarteners on the planet is getting to sing with them. One of my goals for my ESL kindergarten class is to encourage them to talk as much and as soon as possible… without letting them know that’s what I’m doing. Songs and chants are invaluable for reaching this goal (even with adults).
So, when we were working on sight words “look”, “see”, and “me”, our weekly book activity was ‘Brown Bear, Brown Bear’. (As an aside, this book is great for noun/adjective order, animal names, and color word review… and questions/answers). We reviewed our sight words, then read part of the book and students read them in the text. We sang this song from YouTube, which is basically the book put to music. As a review of the story, students had to correctly color the animals on our retelling paper (available here). I modeled how to use the paper to retell the story (with a couple eager helpers) They then decorated their bear, added the googly eyes (which they loved), and mounted on a popsicle stick to make a puppet (they are almost as crazy about puppets as they are about singing). They could then practice retelling the story to each other with their bears. One child would ask the question, one would answer. Some of the kids sang the song to each other or as they were working.
This activity was a hit- all of the kids were singing, almost all were talking! And they were having fun while practicing their language skills. That makes this a keeper in my book!
Also, check out this blog post for more fun ideas and get more printables here!