A Snowman freebie!

Here’s a fun and engaging lesson in analyzing, comparing, and contrasting literature.

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First, you pick two similar winter-themed stories.  I used Frosty the Snowman the book and Frosty the Snowman the movie.  In the past I have also used The Snowman and Frosty the Snowman.  Read the books and/or watch the movie.  You can use this great new product from my store to retell the stories and write about the sequence of the stories to deepen children’s comprehension.

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After completing both books, review with the children the purpose of a Venn diagram.  Show them the snowman body turned sideways and talk about how you would use the Venn diagram to compare the two stories.  Then turn it right side up and ask them what it reminds them of.  Somebody (hopefully) will say a snowman body.

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Either you can prewrite  the names of the things you’re comparing on the blanks before you copy them,  or the children can write them.  Then they illustrate and/or write about about something that happened in only the first story in the top part, only the second story in the bottom part, and something that happened in both stories in the middle.  Add the head (included in the packet), and let the children use crayons, markers, and construction paper to personalize their snowmen.  You now have an awesome wall display that highlights your children’s amazing ability to analyze and compare two pieces of literature!  Here’s some finished samples from my class that we did this year.

frosty sample 2

Teaching at a Catholic School, I did not have white construction paper, so we used manila colored paper.  They still came out very cute, and most kiddos did a fantastic job.  A few needed a little extra help from me to figure out what was the same and different, but that’s okay!

frosty sample

I did not use the pattern I’m supplying you because I did not have it yet!  I just put it together now for this post.  I will probably use it next year, but I do sort of like the uniqueness of each child’s snowman when they cut the circles themselves.  If you do let them cut the circles themselves, be prepared to draw the center overlapping part for some of your kids.  That was tough for several of mine.   I drew that section on both of these samples for the kids working on them.

teacher sample of frosty

Here’s a finished sample I showed the kiddos as I explained the project.  In this sample, I compared Frosty the Snowman to The Snowman.


Frosty (the book) versus Frost (the movie)

Frosty (the book) versus Frost (the movie)

And here’s my finished wall display.  We have conferences on Wednesday, so I will leave these up for parents to look at.

If you’d like to try this in your class, click on the picture below to download the parts.  Do you have any other suggestions of winter stories you could use this for?  I think it would work well for any winter story because a snowman is the quintessential winter symbol.  Maybe two of Jan Brett’s books, since many of her books have winter themes.

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Have a great Sunday, everyone, and go — err, being black and gold Steelers  fan, I’m hoping for a Super Bowl tie.

YIKES!  How could I have forgotten to send you over to 2nd Grade Pad for day 3 of our “For the Love of Teaching Blog Hop”?  There’s just so much going on today!  Head over to Cynthia’s blog to get her compound word freebie activity.  You won’t be sorry you did!

Click on the link below to head over Classroom Freebies for even more great freebies!
Classroom Freebies Manic Monday

Winter Centers – Gone in a Flash!

I had so much fun with my last flash freebie that I decided to do it again, this time with my newest finished teaching eSource, Winter Centers.

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I’m a little late to the party with this center, but let me tell you a story about how they came to be.  I sat down to make a recording sheet to go along with my alphabetizing center for the month of January.  After I made the recording sheet, I looked at my raggedy old alphabetizing cards that I’ve used the past 5 years and thought, “Let me just whip up some new cards to go with my recording sheet.”  So I did.

Then I looked at my Polar Bear Fishy Facts center.  Next to my shiny, new alphabetizing center, the dingy graphics and bent cards looked, well, sad.  So I thought, “How long can it take to whip out new fish and polar bears.  After all, I have this awesome graphics set from Primary Paradise that would work perfectly.”  So I did.

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Then I thought, “I need a center to work with our math unit of place value. Surely that will be easy enough to put together.”  So I did.

Finally, I had one empty board left in my library center, and our newest spelling list introduces silent E, so — well, you know the rest.

So 5 days, 41 pages,  approximately 25 hours of work, and two too many 2:30 nights later, “Winter Centers – “Snow” Much Learning Fun” was born.   I truly had no intention of putting together a set of winter centers.  I was thinking February.  But these winter centers were demanding to be made, so I went with them.   Is that how it works for you all as well?

To celebrate going to bed at 12:30  last night instead of 2:30 — who knew the difference that extra two hours could make — I’m have a two-hour flash freebie.  It is now 2:00 PM EST on Sunday, January 13.  For the next two hours, “Winter Centers – “Snow” Much Learning Fun” will be free!  But hurry because this offer will be gone in a flash!

If you missed the flash freebie, this teaching eSource will be available for $5.50 in my store.

Good luck!