A Chapter Book
Over the past couple of weeks on Tuesday and Friday aftenoons, we began our class in a special way. The children were read a chapter or so of the book Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White. At the end of each chapter, they were asked to make predictions for the following chapter.They were told the title of that chapter to build excitement for the next time we met. As this story was shared, the children practiced such skills as recognizing characters in the story (Fern, Charlotte, Wilbur, Avery, etc.), identifying the setting (the barn, the fair), sequencing events that occurred, and finally seeing the conclusion of the story. There were minimal pictures in the book, which truly encouraged them to use their imaginations. Important concepts were also discussed such as kindness, sharing, and the friendship between Wilbur (the pig) and his friend Charlotte (the spider). The two friends are respectful and loyal to each other. As a culminating activity, we viewed the movie on the last day of school before Spring Break. It was fun to watch their faces light up as each character was introduced and when they remembered parts that we read in the book brought to life.
To coincide with Charlotte’s Web, a few spider projects were completed. We first discussed the parts of a spider that make them special, such as their eight legs, many small eyes, and spinneret (which is the silk-spinning organ of a spider). The children helped identify differences between insects and spiders. The first project was named Mondrian Spiders. The children colored the webs of the spiders red, yellow, and blue which were trademark colors of some of Piet Mondrian’s work and then created their own spider to place in the web. In our second art activity, yarn was used for them to weave a spider web. Each web was a unique creation!