We provide quality, hands-on, thoughtful learning experiences.

While the time we spend with your students is valuable and important, reinforcement of the lessons by you, their teacher and/or parent, will make the lessons even more meaningful.  Please browse the resources made available to you.  These are some books, videos and craft activities that pair well with our programs.  Enjoy!

Amphibian fun!  Frogs & Toads May 2017

  • Suggested Books
    • Ages 3-5:  "From Tadpole to Frog"  -Wendy Pfeffer  An introduction to metamorphosis.
    • Lower Elementary:  "Frogs" -Seymour Simon  Lots of fun facts for curious kids.
  • Crafts & Videos
    • Frog footprints:  use to build interest in a frog unit or compare the frog footprints to other animals
    • Get your kiddos moving as they jump like a frog--then have them measure their jumping distance (math + science!)
    • Could get messy which means it must be fun!  Fake Frog Eggs
    • Feed the frog and get some fine motor skill training while you do it--this could be a fun activity for centers and independent work
    • Frog life cycle video--no words but a simple and fun song to accompany great imagery
    • Frogs (The Thin Green Line) from PBS-a longer video great for older kids and teachers who want to learn more
    • Use frogs to teach about number sense with this counting activity

Life in a Salt Marsh April 2017

  • Great Books about Wetlands
    • Pre-K to Lower Elementary:  "A Day in the Salt Marsh"  -Kevin Kurtz  This book inspired my lesson this month.  I think it's a wonderful book for any classroom!
    • Pre-K to Lower Elementary:  "Following the Coast"  -Jim Arnosky  This is a first hand memoir of a road trip along the east coast.  Great details and drawings.
    • Grades K-1st:  "Water Habitats" -Bobbie Kaulman  This book goes into details about many different aquatic habitats.  Good introductory information for young learners.
    • Pre-K-K:  "About Habitats-Wetlands"  -Cathryn Sill  This is an author I've recommended before. Beautiful paintings with simple text.
  • Crafts, Activities & Videos

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle March 2017

  • Great Books to Share
    • Lower Elementary Students:  "Ecomazes" -Roxie Munro  Kids do a maze through an ecosystem and get a chance to learn about each!
    • Pre K-K:  "The Whole Green World"  -Tony Jonston  Sweet story for young kiddos!
    • Pre K-Grade 1"The Earth and I"  -Frank Asch  A great story as an introduction to recycling.
    • Pre K-Grade 1  "Compost Stew"  -Mary McKenna Siddals  An ABC book with an environmental theme.  Will introduce students or educate them further about composting and soil.
  • Crafts
    • There are a TON of crafts about recycling and Earth Day....I could be here all day listing them.  I am going to instead, make a statement here about how you may choose to do any of those crafts.  If you want to teach about the Earth and taking care of it, try, as best you can, to use old, reused goods to make the crafts.  I find crafts about the Earth using brand new store bought materials sends a mixed message.  Just a thought!

 

  • Exploring Plants February 2017
  • Great Books About Plants
    • Grades 1-3  "Freaky Plant Facts:  Extreme Greens" -Ellen Lawrence  
    • Grades 1-3  "Cooking With Sunshine:  How Plants Make Food:  -Ellen Lawrence
    • Grades 1-3  "Plant Parts:  Stems & Trunks"  -Melanie Waldron  This is actually a series of books on plants.  Lots of information and great pictures
    • Pre-K-Grade 3  "Seed Sun Soil:  Earth's Recipe for Food"  -Cris Peterson  Great pictures and simple text
    • Grades 1-4  "The Life of a Bean"  -Clare Hibbert  A great read for any student growing beans
    • Pre-K-Grade 3  "A Seed is Sleepy"  -Dianna Hutts Aston  This isn't the first time, nor will it be the last time I recommend this author.  Fabulous pictures with simple text for a story or an elaborated text for additional learning.
  • Craft & Activity Resources

Warm Blooded:  Adaptations of Mammals  January 2017

  • Suggested Books
    • Check out the book series by Cathryn Sill called "About Mammals"  or "About Marine Mammals"  or "About Marsupials".  She has books about other animal groups as well.  The illustrations are terrific!  Her text is informative but short, so this is a good read-to-me book for even young students or emergent readers could read on their own.  All will love the pictures.
    • "Tell me Why Bats Sleep Upside Down"  -by Susan Gray.  This book is a great and informative read for K-4th grades.  I learned a lot by reading it.  A great book for a project research.
    • "Eye Wonder Mammals"  by Sarah Walker.  I saw two different versions of this book.  Both are text heavy with great pictures.  These books will be a fun addition to any class library.  Those who can't read will love the pictures.
  • Suggested Activities
    • A great activity for busy bodies:  Movement Dice
    • Are your kids aching to get involved in helping out an endangered mammal?  Here is a great project for that:  How to Save Tigers
    • A great way to show students how reliant some animals are on their sense of smell for survival  
    • Not native to NC, but animals always open up our imaginations.  Here students can engage in imaginative play with kangaroo puppets.
    • Its hard to live in NC and not know about squirrels.  Here is a template for students to cut, color and assemble.
    • The Wild Kratts TV show on PBS has taught my son more about animals than I ever knew at his age.  Games, videos and more.

  

Animal Speak  December 2016

  • Suggested Books
    • "How Animals Communicate:  Slap, Squeak & Scatter"  -Steve Jenkins  Lots of great information to share with your youngest and oldest students.
    • "Animal Behavior Revealed:  How Animals Communicate"  -Rebecca Stefoff  I am using this book in my lesson, both content and pictures.  This is a great research book for a project for strong second grade readers and older--great resource for teachers!
    • "Nature Files:  Animal Communication"  -Anita Ganeiri  Lots of pictures and short bits of information, so this is the best book to add to a preschool library if only to look at the pictures!
  • Suggested Activities
    • Do You Hear What I Hear?  This fun activity helps children listen for and identify sounds, an important skill in understanding spoken communication.  Can be adjusted for the youngest and oldest students.
    • My Hands Can Say  This activity encourages children to express how they are feeling using their hands and words.  Can be adjusted for the youngest and oldest students.
    • Color Wheel  I liked this as it is a cooperative assignment, instilling important group work skills...and colors!  For preschoolers.
    • The Peanut Game  (or pick another small object).  I liked this for its lessons on reading body language and deductive skills.  A very social game!  Good for indoor recess with older students or for preschoolers.
    • Animal Crawl   Get your kiddos moving with this game about animal behaviors.
  • Technology Links
    • Spirit  A fun video on how humans can better communicate with animals.  You have to see it to believe it!
    • ASL video 1 and ASL video 2:  here is where I learned the signs I used in my communication lesson.  These videos are on YouTube so screen first for ads you don't want children to see.  Here is an ASL handout I made to be printed if you prefer.

Food Chains:  The Flow of Energy  November 2016

  • Suggested Books:
    • "This is the Sea That Feeds Us"  -Robert E Baldwin  It rhymes, it's repetitive, sweet illustrations!  I love it.
    • "Butternut Hollow Pond"   -Brian J. Heinz  A more advanced story with a wide variety of organisms.  Also beautifully illustrated.  
    • "Wolf Island"  -Celia Godkin  This is great for illustrating how natural disruptions in a food web can cause problems.
    • "Pond Circle"  -Betsy Franco  Colorful, also repetitive, so good for the littlest learners.
    • "Who Eats What?"  -Patricia Lauber  Not a story but solid information for older students about the science of food chains.
  • Suggested Crafts
  • Technology Links

Fish Facts  October 2016

  • Suggested Books
    • "What's It Like to Be a Fish?"  -Wendy Pfeffer  This book's focus is goldfish and if you are thinking of getting a goldfish as a pet for home or the classroom, I recommend introducing the idea to your kiddos with this book.
    • "Animals of the World:  Salmon & Other Bony Fish"  Lots of interesting facts about fish.  This is a great book for 1st-4th graders to use for research or to read for fun.
    • "The Cod's Tale"  For second grade students and older; has terrific pictures and includes historical, geographical, environmental & commercial aspects of the cod fish.
  • Crafts
  • Technology Links

  

Cold Blooded:  Reptile Adaptations September 2016

  • Suggested Books
    • "Lookout for Turtles" -Melvin Berger  Great for ages 4-8 years old; a sweet tale about how turtles are able to survive
    • "Little Skinks Tail" -Janet Halfmann  Recommended ages 6-9 years old; we didn't focus on lizards and skinks during the lesson, but this story is a sweet one; award winning and entertaining!
    • "A Turtle's Life"  -Nancy Dickmann Recommended ages 4-6
    • "Snakes"  -Gail Gibbons Ages 7-10; I've recommended this author before.  She has written many highly regarded books about various animals
  • Crafts
    • Clay Pot Turtles:  I think kids of all ages could have fun with this; of course would be more work for teachers of younger students.
    • Wool Snakes:  Certainly requires some prep to cut out the turtles but older kids could do it themselves; very good activity for practicing dexterity
    • Wooden Spoon Snakes:  the easiest of the three so the best for the youngest students; would need to shop at a couple of dollar stores to find enough spoons.  Have fun!

Flowers & Their Pollinators    August 2016

  • Suggested Books
    • "Unbeelievables:  honeybee poems & paintings" -Douglas Florian
      • Selections from this book could be read to kids of any age
    • "Monarch & Milkweed" -Helen Frost
      • A sweet and simple story about the monarch lifecycle
    • "Plant Parts:  Flowers" -Melanie Waldron
      • Better for more advanced readers or for teachers who need some help with the facts
    • "Grow With Me Bee" -Kate Riggs
      • Fabulous pictures and accurate information.  I would recommend for ages 4+
    • "What's the Buzz?" -Merrie-Ellen Wilcox
      • I LOVED this book!  Best for advanced younger or older readers or as a teacher reference.
    • "Inside Butterflies" -Hazel Davies
      • What a great book!  I think its best for older readers, but I learned a lot too.
  • Crafts & Projects
    • Bees & Flowers color sheet
    • Beekeeper color sheet
    • Bee Magnet interactive project: this takes some unique supplies (magnets and a magnet wand), but this looks like A LOT of fun for kids to play with.
    • Bubble Wrap Beehive:  cute idea for preschoolers!  Easy prep but could be messy.
    • Pollinator Parade:  this is a science activity for elementary school age students.  Can be modified for younger or older students.  Talk to me if you have questions on how to adjust it for your kids.
    • Pollination Experiment:  such a cute idea for Pre-K to 1st grade.  I am always weary of using junk food in the classroom.  Maybe it could work with some chalk?

The Night Sky   July 2016

  • Suggested Books
    • "The Moon" -Christine Taylor Butler
    • "The Constellation Ursa Major" -Lisa Owings  
      • This is actually a series of really informative books with great images that explains about stars and constellations and space, but gives the individual tale of each constellation.  What I loved is that stories from different cultures were all included.  There are several books in this series.  Use for the pictures, to read the tales to your students or just for information for yourself!
  • Craft Suggestions
    • Preschool Plan It:  this website gives many suggestions on how to include space in your preschool classroom.  From arts and crafts to counting and songs, this is an all inclusive site.
    • Stars as Compass:  This is for older students.  It teaches how the constellations can be used as a directional guide.  It looks like a lot of fun!