Mr Watson’s Place on the Web

Mr Watson’s place for ideas, resources and all things teaching!

Archive for the ‘Cross Curricular’ Category

Hiya People!

Posted by watseducation on December 13, 2009

I welcome myself back to this blog!

I have very sadly neglected it for a long time!

This is an update to say that Mr Watson’s New Place (The Newly Adjusted Blog) is now available!

Having left my previous job, I have transferred the contents of my old class blog to this new one (minus all the school references and photos naturally)

Check it out blog fans!

You might like it!

Mr W.

Posted in Cross Curricular, Fun Stuff, Teaching Resources, Updates | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

How to turn your classroom into a Rainforest!

Posted by watseducation on January 9, 2009

My topic this term is Rainforests and I was looking for some ideas and came across this site:

http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Ithaca/6471/classroom.html

What follows is copied and pasted from there – Not my work!

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Every year, during our Rainforest unit, the students in my class turn the classroom into a rain forest.

On this page I will include some suggestions for turning your classroom into a rain forest. If you try this, I would appreciate your emailing me with any additional suggestions you have. These suggestions will be added to this page and credited to you at your school. I would also appreciate a picture of your rain forest classroom that can be added to this site. I can also link your picture to your school’s home page, if you’d like.

Suggestions

Windows – You can have children paint huge jungle plants on classroom windows using tempera paint mixed with liquid soap. (They can be very free with this is, it is a background!) It will scrape, vacuum, and wash off fairly easily. After the jungle dries, children can paint birds in the trees, tigers hiding in the jungle, or sloths hanging in trees. I start with only greens and browns to get the jungle, then, on different days, give them colours for the animals.

It took us 2-3 days, spending 1-2 hours each day to paint the windows. Other children were painting tree paper or working on research while this was going on.

Trees – You can have children paint a tree texture onto huge brown butcher paper. Then cut the paper to the height you need and loosely wrap posts or wall areas between windows.

The tree paper can be painted while other things are going on, the windows, branches or research. A parent or 2 helps a lot!

Canopy – To hang a canopy; buy many yards of green material. Drape these out from trees, attaching to the ceiling at several points. If you can drape loosely over some fluorescent lights, the room gets a green hue!

I did this without children around! They were quite surprised when they came in the next day!

Branches – You can make branches using newspaper tubes, wrapped in foil, covered with Papier Mache (strips of newspaper soaked in a mixture of flour and water). I had parent help for the branches! They can be in an area of the hall or room, on a large plastic tablecloth spread out on the floor and groups of 3-5 children can work at a time. You can use as many branches as they make! Let them dry several days. Then have a painting party, where everyone paints branches with tempera paint. (I again use a wide variety of greens and browns.) When dry, the branches can be hung from the ceiling using clear fishing line.

Making the branches takes one 2 hour session. Painting, several days later, takes one 1-2 hour session. I hang these after school for several days!

Vines – You can hang vines by just hanging lengths of jute-type ropes from branches, ceiling, or trees. Asking children to bring in long pieces of rope works well because you will get a variety of kinds. If you want to be really fancy, you can paint or dye some of them. You can attach leaves or flowers to the vines.

Leaves – Have the children all make leaves, using a variety of green paper, some huge, some smaller. The leaves can be taped to the trees, hung on the vines, taped to window edges, as needed.

This takes only one session, about an hour. Some will make one very elaborate leaf, some will make 10 huge, plain leaves. They can draw vein patterns on both sides, or cut pieces out, as though some critter has been eating it!

Flowers – Children can make a variety of small or large flowers using colored tissue paper. These can be hung on vines, taped to trees, attached to branches, taped to windows, etc. The children can put these about anywhere they want.

Bugs – A huge variety of bugs, small frogs and lizards can be added to your rain forest. You can have the children bring in rubber bugs, frogs, snakes, etc. or they can make them with clay. These can be camouflaged on windows, sills, trees, branches, leaves, anywhere!

Bromeliads – Children can make bromeliads by taping long strips of leaf shaped, green paper to toilet paper rolls. They can even put little circles of blue paper in the middle to represent water and add a paper frog. If you want step by step instructions, send an email message to me.

This took most children one 1-11/2 hour session. Some finished these as others painted or worked on research.

My children each added a model of her/his rain forest plant or animal. We had paper bag gorillas, Styrofoam birds, paper mache monkeys, felt bats that hung on the vines, giant paper raflesia flowers on the counter, etc.

Suggestions sent from afar:

I have a 3rd grade class in Yoncalla, Oregon. We have made rainforests in our school hallway two different years. The first, second and third grade all worked together to create our rainforest. The kids all enjoyed it and took a lot of pride in the results. We made trees with textured bark from a laundry detergent and brown tempera paste. We cut leaves from butcher paper and hung the animals being studied from overhead wires or attached them to the trees or the hall walls. We have several rainforest sound tapes that we played. We hid the tape recorders behind tree trunks. It was great.

 

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Mr W.

Posted in Creative Curriculum, Cross Curricular | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

Downloading videos from Youtube etc.

Posted by watseducation on December 15, 2008

Video Download Tools

I thought this might prove useful.
I have been throught the use of Mozilla Firefox as a browser and using the Download Helper add-on, and it is good but as they have improved the service that add-on provides, it has got more compliacted and doesn’t always do what I want it to do!

I have found this link though and it is great!

It is to Downloadtoolz.com
It gives download programs for Youtube, Teachertube and other video hosting sites. (I must tell you though it gives them for other more ‘unsavoury’ videos sites too)
But the Youtube, and Teachertube ones are excellent, and gives you an flv file (flash video file) that you can then insert into a SMART file to watch as part of a lesson – just what I want and it is FREE too!

Hope it is useful to you too!

Mr W.

Posted in Creative Curriculum, Cross Curricular, Fun Stuff, ICT, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The Romans – Make and Do!

Posted by watseducation on September 21, 2008

Here are some more ‘Creative’ resources for The Romans.

A series of make and do activities for your class. All should prove to be great fun and all provide opportunities to develop skills across the curriculum.

Celtic Roundhouse

K’Nex Ballista

Face Pot

Jewellery

Knucklebones

Roman Clothes for a Doll

Roman Recipes

Soldier Costume

Writing Tablet

They aren’t all my own work! (Although I did put them into Word!) They are from this site which has loads of good quality resources.

http://museums.ncl.ac.uk/reticulum/funstuffSub.htm

Hope these are useful, and if you know of any good sites for the Romans – please let me know!

(I also make this picture into a 6ft Roman Soldier using Block Posters, it looks awesome!)

Mr W.

Posted in Creative Curriculum, Cross Curricular, Fun Stuff, Teaching Resources | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Making HUGE posters

Posted by watseducation on September 11, 2008

Have you ever wanted to make your photos wall-sized? Here is a totally free website to upload a photo and then create a saveable .pdf file with all you need to print, cut and stick your own.

http://www.blockposters.com

Amaze your class with a 6ft picture of you!!!! – or make a walk-in landscape.

(Thanks to the Kent ICT Blog again for this one!)

Posted in Creative Curriculum, Cross Curricular, Teaching Resources, Updates | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

TutPup – ‘Safe’ Online gaming for kids, and Educational too!

Posted by watseducation on September 4, 2008

Tutpup is an exciting and new safe way of playing games against children in the UK and across the world. It is free, has no ads, doesn’t grab kids personal data and allows them to play competitive maths games against their friends or students from around the world in a safe educational environment. For example, they could try a division game and find themselves instantly challenged by a child in India!

Children cannot:

  • Send messages to other players.
  • Use their own names. When a child registers to use Tutpup they choose a unique screen name, a combination of a colour, animal and number

All they can do is play games.

http://tutpup.com/

I confess entirely to stealing this Blog Post from the Kent ICT blog!

But they have put a link to my Class Blog so I am sure that they won’t mind and I have owned up!

This site is AWESOME!!

Very addictive and I am a teacher playing children! (That is soooo mean!)

I truly don’t believe that there is a child who won’t respond to the site and the games it contains.

The fact that there is NO chat option and they have no idea who they are playing against, or how old they are is great!

I brilliant way to get ICT into Numeracy or Literacy (and I bet they go on at home too!)

Mike

Posted in Cross Curricular, Literacy, Numeracy Ideas, Teaching Resources | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Class Blogs – Why not start one up?

Posted by watseducation on September 1, 2008

Have you considered setting up a class blog?

You should give it a whirl!

Using wordpress.com you can set up blogs for free! It is quick and easy to do, register, choose a name and away you go!

You can have as many as you want and can set them up for every class, teacher, TA, and even the school council!

It is a great way to encourage writing – Boys love it! (Mind you so do the girls!)

It is something new to most children and because it is ICT and Web based it gets them where they live!

You can set homework, give activities, webquests, communicate with parents and children, post resources, weblinks, newsletters, almost anything you can imagine!

Once you build it up it is amazing how many hits you can get from all across the Web!

If you want any advice, get in touch or comment here – you DO NOT need to be a computer whizz to be successful!

Have a Go!

Mr W.

Posted in Cross Curricular, Primary School, Updates | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Roman Topic Resources

Posted by watseducation on September 1, 2008

I have had a hunt around and found some resources for my Roman topic.

I thought that they might be useful to some people.

Let me know what you think!

Building a Roman Road

KS2-3 A Roman Learning Journey

Romans Topic Pack

Make Roman Sandal with Diagram

Nuffield DT – Roman Mosaics

Info Card – All items in Impedimenta

Assorted History Websites

Posted in Cross Curricular, KS2 Planning, Teaching Resources | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Are you bringing back the Nature Table?

Posted by watseducation on July 14, 2008

The Country Living Nature Table Campaign

I must confess I feel strongly about this one.

As a person who teaches in the city and lives in the country, near a riverside, woodland and farmland. I am still saddened to meet Year 6 children in my school who have never been in woodland, or seen a cow! Milk comes from the supermarket (I have been told so by a bright 11 year old).

We need to get children out side and back in touch with nature. I have taken children to a village in the country, a new experience for many. From where we base ourselves we are  5 minutes walk to woodland, 10 seconds to a field and 5 minutes to the river.

The village farmer takes the children around the farm yard, to see the crops, both growing and harvested, the machinery and the animals. They are always fascinated, and talk about it for ages afterwards, it is such a positive experience for them.

Every year the trip has been a success, every year the children and parents thank me and every year I try do it again.

I have taken this from the Country Living Magazine website – join in, it is a must wherever you teach, town, city, village or rural:

Country Living Nature Table Campaign

country living nature table campaign

It’s important for children to connect with nature, which is why we’ve launched our Bring Back the Nature Table campaign. We want to see one in every primary school and for parents, grandparents and guardians to take children regularly to parks, fields and woodlands.

Can you create a winning nature table?

Country Living online 15.04.2008

While you’re out and about with your children, help them to create a winning nature table at school or to put together a nature project at home

children at nature table Country Living's nature table

The Best School Nature Table (open to primary and junior schools in the UK) will win a Nikon Fieldmicroscope Mini (worth more than £500, see www.nikon.co.uk), plus a Nikon Pocket-type Loupe magnifying glass to help the winning class study their nature finds and a bird-box webcam. Our competition is open to schools that already have a nature table or are starting a new one.

The Best Home Nature Project created by children and their parents, guardians or grandparents) will win a pair of Nikon Sportstar EX binoculars (worth more than £100) to take on nature walks, plus a family (max. six people) visit to Pensthorpe Nature Reserve. Runners-up will receive a Jordans hamper. Children can be as creative as they like – their project could be a scrapbook, a collection of photographs from walks, or even an art installation!

For both categories, the judges will be looking for seasonal changes and an emphasis on native plants. (Remember to follow the Countryside Code). The winning entries will be featured in the December issue of Country Living.

How to enter

For Best School Nature Table, send photographs of the table and an explanation of no more than 200 words, along with the school/class name, address and tel no.

For Best Home Nature Project, send photographs and/or the project, along with the adult and child’s/children’s name/s, address and tel no.

Send all entries to: Nature Table Competition, Country Living, 72 Broadwick Street, London W1F 9EP. Closing date for entries is 1 September 2008.

Click here to find out more about the nature table campaign

Country Living

The Country Living Nature Table Campaign

Posted in Cross Curricular, Nature Tables, Science, Updates | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »