Friday, July 27, 2012

Magic Tree House



I recently found out that a blogging buddy is a MTH-aholic too! So I decided to blog about my two favorite time travelers, Jack and his sister Annie!

If you have never read this series then you are in for a treat. Those of you, like me, who read a book a week will also nod and smile while you are reading this. (I hope.)

I discovered the brother/sister team while I was teaching First Grade. My co-teacher introduced them to me and we made the best Science and Social Studies plans for our Sunshine State Standards using fun hands-on activities. I want to share some of our ideas with you and maybe you can share yours! I really don't have time to use the books like I used too, but sometimes they are my go-to books when I come across these concepts in our new NGSSS and CCCS.
I always start out with book #1 and continue on in order,I'm funny like that, but really they need to be read like that in my opinion, because of how Mary Pope Osborne has set them up. They are grouped in fours. The first four you must figure out who owns the Tree House, the next four you must read the stories in order to  solve the mystery of "Peanut"....always in fours...

The first book is called Dinosaurs Before Dark. I use this book to learn how to think like a scientist, and also to talk about being a history detective.(Primary Source) It's good stuff!
I also branched out in this book and go on a dinosaur hunt using measurement. We compare our foot prints to that of an actual dinosaur, and "hatch" a class dinosaur using paper mache and a plastic dino. It was fun!
From there I read, The Knight at Dawn, and discuss matter. I use the obstacles they run into (stone wall, moat and the fog) to begin a quick study on matter.
In Mummies in the Morning, I introduced Ancient Civilizations, and for fun we used to mummify an orange slice!
The last book of the four is Pirates Past Noon,. Did I mention I do the voices too? Well this book is always a class favorite! I love being Cap't Bones! Map skills, yes I use this book to teach map skills. I even use maps from the Magic Kingdom (it's in our back yard) and we find the "Pirates of the Caribbean" using N,E,S,W....fun stuff, plus we make our own treasure maps and have a speak like a pirate afternoon! AAARG it's a good time!

I usually make it to MTH #34 by the end of the school year, that is Season of the Sandstorm, an adventure in Baghdad! We have fun traveling through space and time. We do a lot of writing and hand-on crafts and book report projects too!
Here is a list of the rest and the idea I used for each:
#5 Night of the Ninja-Be Nature, go on a nature walk.
#6 Afternoon in the Amazon-Rain forest, make a levels of the rain forest book
#7 Sunset of the Saber tooth- archeology, freeze bones in ice and dig them out (I have a kit)
#8-Midnight on the Moon-space
#9 Dolphins at Daybreak-Scientific Method (this is when I usually get our Science Fair stuff ready too)
#10 Ghost Town at Sundown-transportation
#11 Lions at Lunchtime-Food Web
#12 Polar Bears Past Bedtime-animal adaptations . We make a polar bear (black paper bag) and glue fur on him, sand paper paws....
#13 Vacation under the Volcano-Rock Cycle, I do AIMS lessons with this one!
#14 Day of the Dragon King ancient china, we eat popcorn with chopsticks fun times!
#15 Vikings at Sunrise-Myths (you should hear my Irish accent!)
#16 Hour of the Olympics-Greece (hello it's Olympic year)
#17 Tonight on the Titanic-water cycle
#18 Buffaloes Before Breakfast-Native Americans, we make deer skin hides and write on them.(brown paper bags)
#19 Tigers at Twilight-Endangered Species
#20 Dingoes at Dinner Time- Australia/Marsupials
#21 Revolutionary War on Wednesday- History/GW. Letter Writing too.
#22 Civil War on Sunday-History/Clara Barton
#23 Twister on Tuesday-Weather
#24 Earthquake in the Early Morning-Natural Disasters
#25 Stage Fright on a Summer's Night- poetry
#26 Goodnight Gorillas-Cloud forest. Learn sign language to spell our names too.
#27 Thanksgiving on Thursday-past/present
#28 High Tide in Hawaii-Friendship..plan a luau!

Maybe once I get back I'll figure out how to upload some of my projects for you to download!
I'm off to Las Vegas today...see you soon!
~Natalie

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