The weather is getting warmer and your students are likely getting antsy. Why not embrace this season and integrate some of these fun activities into your daily lesson plans? Plus download a free activity for your parents to use at home at the end of this post.
1. Taking it outside
With the warmer weather, you can just take your materials and your students outside to teach a lesson. Yes, there will be some distractions. It may be challenging to keep your kiddos contained, but there is a lot to learn from just being outside. Try to set up the area with clear boundaries so students understand where they are supposed to stay. Use either physical items like chairs, carpet squares, or a blanket. You can also use visual cues like drawing chalk lines if you are on a solid surface. Make sure to remember to bring:
- any visual schedules or behavioral picture cues you normally use
- communication devices
- all your materials
Make sure you look in the Free Resource Library (see tab at top of page) for some FREE vocabulary cards you can download and use for a Spring lesson that would be perfect outside.
2. Go on a scavenger hunt
Spring is the perfect time to go on a scavenger hunt. There are so many changes happening in the world and clues that spring is here. I just wrote a blog post about going on a scavenger hunt, including a FREE hunt for spring you can download for spring. Be sure to read all about it HERE.
3. Plant a class garden
This is the perfect time to plant your class garden. If you plant it now, by the time Earth Day comes around, you will have some things already coming up out of the ground. This is a great way to get those sensory needs met. Play in the dirt. Let the seeds run through your fingers. Have a large bucket of water students can plunge small cups into to water the newly planted seeds.
4. Incubate some chicken eggs
This was always one of my favorite spring activities, although it didn’t always go that well. There were years when none of my eggs hatched. That was a bummer. But, for the years it did work, it was great!! I have a companion unit in my store that goes great with this classroom activity. You can check it out HERE.
5. Go on a field trip
It seems like everyone is going on a field trip this time of year. Why should our kids be left out? I wrote a great blog post about making the most of a field trip (with some free downloads of course). Read about it HERE.
6. Make a collage
I love doing arts and crafts even though they may get a little messy at times. Spring is a great time to make a collage. There are several ways to do this so ALL your students can be involved and work at their own level.
- Take items you find outside (maybe from your scavenger hunt) and glue them on a sturdy piece of cardboard.
- Take some magazines and find pictures of spring things to make a colorful picture.
- Using those same magazines, for students who are readers, have them make a collage of all the spring words they can find. They can even spell some words out by cutting out letters.
7. Write a story
There are so many things happening this time of year that students can write about. Writing prompts are one of my favorite tools to give students a chance to express what they like and don’t like on their own. I have a great new product in my store that contains 15 Writing Prompts for Spring. Check it out HERE. If you are not sure how to use writing prompts with your students or don’t think they can do them, read more HERE (and download a free prompt to try.)
8. Take a nature hike/walk
So this is a little different (in my mind) than a scavenger hunt. In one of my schools, we had these great trails behind the building that went through the woods and down to a creek. Taking a hike during each season was a great way for students to see how things in nature changed. We had one particular spot where a student would stand and we would take their picture. We could compare how the colors changed, how the height of the plants changed, how the ground covering changed, etc. with each season. It was such a fun activity! If you want to make it more structured for your students, read how to do that in my blog post on structured walks HERE.
9. From caterpillar to butterfly
Similar to incubating the chicken eggs, creating a habitat for caterpillars and watch them grow, make cocoons and hatch into butterflies is something many students are doing this time of year. I have a unit that has some great supporting activities for this if you plan on doing it in your classroom this year. Check it out HERE.
10. Get your parents involved
I don’t know about you, but I always need a little extra help getting out of my winter rut at home. Your students’ parents are probably feeling the same way. You can download this great family involvement activity below that gives your parents lots of great ways to get outside and enjoy this warmer weather. You can set this up as a contest, a homework assignment, or just a helpful handout to send home. I always did one of these at Christmas time and they worked really well. Click the button below the image to download this free activity.