Category Archives: Early Enrichment

Early Enrichment Spark #56: Comedy in Wildlife Photography

Did you know that there are awards for funny photographs of wildlife?

Born from a passion for wildlife, The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards began modestly in 2015 as a photographic competition.

Since then, it has grown into a worldwide competition seen by millions of people every year, and always with wildlife conservation at its heart.

The free competition, open to wildlife photography experts and beginners, celebrates the funniness of our natural world and highlights what we need to do to protect it. From a surprised otter to an angry turtle, Comedy Wildlife’s photographs bring a smile to everyone’s face.

Below is a link to a google slides presentation with some of the finalists for the 2021 Comedy Wildlife Photography awards.

Your job is to write something funny to go along with each photo!

Directions:                                                                                                                                                                  1) Click the link below.                                                                                                                                          2) Make a copy of the slides.   Now they are yours!                                                                                      3) Write something funny on each slide to go along with each picture.                                              4) When you are finished, click on the yellow share button.                                                                    5) Share with the EY teacher at your building!                                                              Swanson/Sunset: henningsen.jennifer@westside66.net                                          Westgate/Paddock Rd.: spady.lynn@westside66.net                                                                        Prairie Lane/Loveland/Westbrook: thompson.megan@westside66.net Rockbrook/Oakdale/Hillside: sindt.kathleen@westside66.net

Link to Comedy Wildlife Google Slides 

Early Enrichment Spark #54: Poetry!

Pictured above is one of my favorite poets – Amanda Gorman. In the picture, she is reading a poem at the inauguration of President Joe Biden! And, she is just 22 years old!!

Amanda Gorman is the youngest inaugural poet in U.S. history, as well as an award-winning writer! She has written for the New York Times and has three books forthcoming with Penguin Random House.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, she began writing at only a few years of age. Now her words have won her invitations to the Obama White House and to perform for Lin-Manuel Miranda, Al Gore, Secretary Hillary Clinton, Malala Yousafzai, and others.

In 2017, Amanda Gorman was appointed the first-ever National Youth Poet Laureate by Urban Word – a program that supports Youth Poets Laureate in more than 60 cities, regions and states nationally. She is the recipient of the Poets & Writers Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award, and is the youngest. board member of 826 National, the largest youth writing network in the United States.

Click on the link below to watch Amanda Gorman read her poem “Talking Gets Us There”.

https://pbskids.org/video/dots-spot/3050991492

HERE’S YOUR CHALLENGE: WRITE A POEM OF YOUR OWN!!

Go to https://www.poetry4kids.com/ to explore! Click on the “Poems” tab to read poems others have written to help you gain some inspiration!

Under the “Lessons” tab, you’ll find poetry lessons, as well as a rhyming dictionary!!

Submit your poem in the comments below.

Early Enrichment Spark #53: Unicorn Study

We will celebrate National Unicorn Day on April 9th. Check out these  fun unicorn topics to stretch your knowledge about this mythical beast to get ready!

Free Vector | Silhouette of a unicorn on a hologram gradient background

Fact Page-kiddle.com

https://kids.kiddle.co/Unicorn

Create your own unicorn fact page

Article-Siberian Unicorn Fossils

https://www.natgeokids.com/uk/discover/animals/prehistoric-animals/siberian-unicorn-fossil-discovery-humans/

Make a trivia game about these creatures

Video-Unicorns of the Sea

https://youtu.be/CJbmSsSxf_A

Take detailed notes while watching this video

Book-How to Catch a Unicorn

Make a list of the traps they tried in the book.

Make a drawing of your own plan for a unicorn trap.

In the news-The Unicorn Puppy

https://www.natgeokids.com/uk/discover/animals/general-animals/narwhal-the-unicorn-puppy/

Summarize this article in 3 sentences

STEAM-Design a unicorn

Include a description about where it live, what it looks like, what it eats, and its powers.

Include a picture of your unicorn in its habitat

Make a pic collage about your unicorn and its features.

Early Enrichment Spark #52: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Today, we celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

Below are 10 facts about Martin Luther King, Jr.

  1. Martin Luther King Jr’s father was the pastor of the Ebeneezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia, in the United States of America.
  2. Martin was a gifted student. He was awarded several university degrees.
  3. He decided he wanted to become a minister and delivered his first sermon at his father’s church at the age of 18.
  4. In December 1955, in Montgomery Alabama, Rosa Parks, a black woman, was arrested for failing to give up her bus seat to a white man.
  5. Martin Luther King, Jr. was appointed president of the Montgomery Improvement Association which led the boycott of the Montgomery bus services. (A boycott is where you stop using goods or services to bring about a change.)
  6. The bus boycott lasted 381 days at the end of which the US Supreme Court ruled that segregation was illegal.
  7. Martin Luther King, Jr. was a very brave man who believed in non-violent protest. During the course of his campaign his house was bombed, he was arrested on numerous occasions, and he was stabbed. Finally, he was shot and killed at the age of 39 in Memphis, Tennessee.
  8. Dr King was a very powerful orator (speech maker). His most famous speech, “I Have A Dream”, was delivered to an audience of 250,000 people.
  9. Following Martin Luther King Jr.’s murder, a national day of mourning was declared in the USA.
  10. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, held on the third Monday of January, is now a public holiday in the USA.

Have you heard of Kid President? Click on the video below to watch him tell the story of Martin Luther King, Jr. Then, in the comments, tell us how will you celebrate and honor Dr. King on his special day.

Early Enrichment Spark #51: National Cookie Day!

Friday is National Cookie Day!!  This is a great time of year for cookies! I know I can’t stop eating them!

Here’s a quick, but fun, video about the history of the cookie – did you know they were invented by accident? Find out how by clicking below:

Then, who is the most FAMOUS lover of cookies???  Well, Cookie Monster! Who else? To help celebrate National Cookie Day, sing along with the video below!

Finally, I think I have the BEST recipe for chocolate chip cookies. I’ve shared it below.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients

1 cup Shortening
1 cup Sugar
1/2 cup Brown Sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. Vanilla
2 cups Flour
1 1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Baking Soda
12-oz. pkg. Chocolate Chips

Preparation

Cream shortening, sugars, eggs, and vanilla until light and fluffy. Sift together dry ingredients. Stir into creamed mixture. Blend well. Add chips.
Drop from tsp. 2 inches apart on a greased cookie sheet (or a non-stick baking sheet). Bake in moderate oven (375 degrees) for 8 – 10 minutes.
Makes 6 dozen.

SHARE YOUR FAVORITE COOKIE RECIPE IN THE COMMENTS!

Early Enrichment Spark #50 – Turkey Time

Step 1 – Have you ever wondered why turkey is often a dish enjoyed at Thanksgiving Dinner? Check out this Wonderopolis to learn all about this tradition. Click below.

Now, that you have learned a little about this tradition, let’s get creative!

Step 2 – Watch this video for step-by-step directions on how to draw an adorable turkey. Grab a piece of paper and drawing utensil and click on the video below.

Remember, you can pause the video if you need more time.

Step 3 – Display your turkey drawing in your house for others to enjoy!

Early Enrichment Mini-Spark #49: Heroes

In the last Early Enrichment Mini-Spark, you were shown how to make your own pipe-cleaner superhero. That was fun!!

But, did you know that not all heroes have superpowers and/or wear capes?

Lots of stories have heroes or heroines! Think about this question: What does it take to be a hero?

Think about that question while you go to the link below to watch and listen to a story about Ping.

After watching/listening to the story, answer the following questions in the comments below:

1. Was Ping a hero? Why or why not?

2. What qualities or character traits did he have that could be considered heroic?

3. What qualities or character traits did he have that might not be considered heroic?

And, finally…

4. What does it take to be a hero?

LINK TO THE STORY

 

Early Enrichment Mini-Spark #48: Pipe Cleaner Superheroes!

Source: https://frugalfun4boys.com/pipe-cleaner-superheroes

If you are a superhero fan, you will not want to miss this awesome craft! You will have a blast creating your own jointed and posable superheroes out of very simple materials. Pipe cleaners, straws, beads… You probably have most (if not all) of the supplies on hand!

First, grab your supplies:

  • Pipe cleaners
  • Felt, for capes
  • Straws – we used paper straws, but regular straws are just fine (and much cheaper)
  • Googly eyes
  • Pony beads
  • Wooden beads – we used 3/4 inch diameter beads
  • Tacky Glue
  • Hot glue
  • Scissors
  • Markers – we used Sharpie oil based paint markers. They bleed less on wood than regular Sharpies.

Step 1: Start by drawing hair and superhero masks on the wooden beads.

Step 2: Glue on googly eyes – SO CUTE! Then draw a little mouth.     

Step 3: Grab three pipe cleaners. Twist them together in the middle. I found that three “twists” was enough to hold them securely together. Then adjust them so that they are in the arrangement shown.

Step 4: Slide three pony beads onto BOTH of the bottom two pipe cleaners. This will form the body.

Step 5: Cut a straw into 8 one inch segments. (Or feel free to adjust the size!) We found that we could get 7 segments out of each straw, so you’ll need two straws per superhero, with quite a bit left over.

Step 6: Build each limb by sliding on a straw segment, then a pony bead, then another straw segment.

Step 7: Bend the ends of the pipe cleaners into hands and feet. I found that it helps to wrap some of the excess around the wrist or ankle to make it secure. Then trim off any excess ends.

Step 8: Slide the head onto the final two pipe cleaners. Then trim off the excess.

Step 9: To make the head more secure, attach it with Tacky Glue. Squirt some glue onto the pipe cleaners. Then slide the head on. We had a little bit of glue ooze out at the bottom of the head. Just wipe off the excess with a paper towel.
Step 10: Cut out a cape from felt and use hot glue to attach it to the backs of the arm segments.
In the comments below, share a picture of YOUR Pipe Cleaner Superhero!
**Extra challenge**: Write a story with your Pipe Cleaner Superhero (or heroes) as your main character. Share the story with the EY Coordinator at your building!

Early Enrichment Mini-Spark #47: Moving Mammals!

Mammals are everywhere—from the Arctic ice to the driest of deserts. They live on land, in the open ocean, and underground. With more than 5,400 species, mammals move in all kinds of ways. They walk, hop, gallop, and swing from trees. They swim, dive, glide, and even fly!

Go to this website to check out how bats, bears, dolphins, gazelles, gibbons, and/or kangaroos move and learn some fun facts about each!

In the comments below, write down something you learned!