Friday, April 25, 2014

Springing into Science Blog Hop, with a Freebie & a Giveaway!

Hi, Teaching Friends!

Welcome to the Springing into Science Blog Hop! From now through Monday, a group of  over twenty K-2 bloggers will be sharing their ideas, freebies, and giveaways to help you put some added zip in your science teaching this spring. You'll find a different surprise at each blog!

Keep reading for your freebie, and a chance to win a Weather Literacy unit!

Is weather part of your science curriculum? Whether it is or whether it's not (sorry, couldn't resist the pun!), the weather is a very real part of our little learners' lives. They hear their parents talk about it every day and they see how it affects their own lives, from what they wear to whether recess will be indoors or outdoors. Even if weather is not an assigned unit of teaching for you, there's a lot of value for your students in teaching about weather and seasons.

Studying weather is a great way to observe and record change over time, which is a skill that applies to other areas of the curriculum. Think about literacy, where we teach our students how to observe changes in characters over the course of a book. How about history, where even our youngest learners will be learning about differences in how people used to live long ago and now? Observing and describing change is an important skill!

Weather and seasons are also a great way to demonstrate the reliability of patterns. Even though weather is not always completely predictable (sometimes hardly predictable at all, it seems!), the cycle of the seasons is a predictable, repeated pattern over time. Even after the kind of winter many of us just came through, spring always follows. The seasons are a pattern. So is the evaporation-condensation cycle. Patterns are a huge part of math, too, even if not always directly so in our teaching anymore. (Help me understand that, please!)  The patterns are sure there, 'though ... skip counting, multiples, time around the clock, and so many patterns on the hundred chart! 

In reading and writing, the dependability of spelling patterns helps our students apply the onset/rime principle as they decode and spell. Amidst the unpredictability of our English spelling, it must be somewhat of a reassurance to struggling young readers that at least some words have usable patterns!

Story structures are another example of predictable patterns. Familiarity with the days in the week pattern of Brown Bear and the months of the year in Jesse Bear will make other books easier to read and understand. Readers will apply the cumulative pattern of a book like The Jacket I Wear in the Snow as they read similar books.

So, even an informal study of weather is valuable as a tool to help us teach our students to build connections across the curriculum.

Here's a free set of weather vocabulary cards! Use them for vocabulary review or alphabetizing, or print two sets for matching and Memory games. Or, leave the cards as a whole page and put it in your writing center to encourage writing stories, poems, and non-fiction pieces about the weather. Just click on the picture to download and enjoy.

The word cards are part of my Weather Literacy unit, 15 Common Core aligned literacy activities to support your science teaching. Weather phrases for building fluency, fact and opinion sentence strips to sort, riddles for inference, an "I Have, Who Has.." game to reinforce vocabulary, syllable sort, making words, compare and contrast, nouns and adjectives, alphabetical order ... over 70 pages of activities for centers! Click to see it at my Teachers Notebook shop or my Teachers Pay Teachers store.


Would you like to win a copy of the complete weather unit? Here's your chance!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

It's time to head over to the next stop on the Springing into Science Blog Hop! Click here to see what Michele has in store for you!

Are you looking for even more great primary science links? Click back to my Spring Science for Firsties Linky Party.

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Happy Teaching!


  1. Your weather unit looks great! I loved teaching the weather unit when I was in the classroom. There were so many real life applications for it, and it could be so hands on. Hope you are enjoying some nice spring weather after a long, cold winter!

    Reading Toward the Stars

    1. Thanks, Andrea! I agree that teaching weather is a lot of fun - lots of variety!
      Thanks for leaving a comment!

  2. Thank you for sharing your freebie on Manic Monday. I teach upper elementary, but I downloaded it for my new student who is also new to English.

    1. I'm so glad that this may help your new student, Mary! Good luck to both you and your student with the new challenges ahead!


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