Posts Tagged ‘early childhood’

If you are teaching about recycling and other forms of waste management, check out the PBS Website, which has numerous ideas for educators and parents teaching kids about waste management.

Here are some ideas you will find there:

Zoom has instructions for making your own recycled paper using simple materials. There’s nothing like a good science project to help kids really understand that an old product can be made into a new one!

For younger learners, you can start with a litter campaign. Before kids can understand trash and recycling, litter is a starting point for thinking about the idea that used items have to be gotten rid of.

Eeko World’s Garbage and Recycling page takes students through an animated waste tour. The video is long, but kid-friendly, comprehensive, and detailed. There’s a great accompanying lesson plan to sort trash from recyclables including math extensions.

For these ideas and more, check out the PBS Teachers page on recycling!

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Last week, we mentioned the Magic School Bus At the Waterworks and yesterday we featured Rain. Here are some other fantastic water books you may want to read with younger students:

Drip! Drop!: How Water Gets to Your Tap by Barbara Seulig is written for younger readers than the Magic School Bus and covers both the water cycle and a basic introduction to water purification.

Water, Water by Eloise Greenfield is written for PK students. This very simple book takes students through places they may have seen water and helps them identify just how much water can be found around them: wading, fishing, drinking, or watching water.

Water by Frank Asch is another simple and beautifully illustrated book that tells the story of the water around us from obvious examples (like rivers) to the less obvious (like clouds and dew). The book also shows water’s importance in an urban setting – putting out fires and washing cars.

I Get Wet is designed to inspire all kinds of scientific inquiry. Written for early learners, the book asks questions that require experimentation, leading students to be curious and try out the experiments the book suggests.

And that’s all for early childhood water books for today – check back later for water books for older readers. It’s rainy here in Brooklyn today – we hope these books and the Rain yesterday give you some inspirations for water-focused classroom books.

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Thanks to a recommendation from the Early Childhood department here at Brooklyn Children’s Museum, here’s a lovely fall book for your youngest learners, to add to your fall unit.

Autumn Walk is the story of a puppy who goes on a seasonal stroll, through a world that smells like cinnamon and feels “corduroy cold.” The sentences are simple but very descriptive, a great chance to introduce fall words to your students. Autumn Walk‘s illustrations are full of red, yellow, and orange to match the season and, as you can see, this board book is shaped like a leaf. Read this book with your 2-4 year-olds and then take your own walk outside.

And there’s more! Autumn Walk has a seasonal companion Winter Walk, for use a little later this year.

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Looking for other great sources of science activities? Check out HowToSmile.org, a database of science and math activities (they list more than 2,000). Activities range from PK to high school and you can filter search results by grade, cost, time involved, and more.

Searching for early childhood (PK-K) and environmental topics, here are some of the great ideas I found:

  • Habitat Observation: this lesson provides discussion points for observing an animal and figuring out how it survives in its habitat (can be done indoors or outside)
  • Potato Battery: this one is a great demonstration for your study of energy. Make a clock run using a potato and use that experience to talk about other sources of energy!
  • Fruit Fly Trap: use an empty bottle to tap fruit flies and observe their life cycle (works best in warmer weather)
  • Ladybug Spots: this activity brings in art, science, and math to learn about symmetry in the wild
  • Bird Binoculars: if you’re taking a bird walk, make pretend binoculars with toilet paper rolls to help kids feel like serious bird watchers (you might allow one child to use a set of binoculars you purchased and the others can use their pretend binoculars while they wait). Don’t forget a field guide!

Check out HowToSmile – what other lesson ideas do you love?

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Welcome to Teach Green in Brooklyn! This blog will serve as a compliment to My Green Community and as a forum for educators to share their expertise in teaching environmental education to young learners.

What is My Green Community? It is a publication produced by the Brooklyn Children’s Museum with support from the Institute of Museum and Library Sciences. The guide is designed for educators working with students in grades PK-2, though many of the activities could be easily adapted for older students. The guide has two main sections, about nature about sustainability. Topics include insects, plants, energy, food, water, and waste management. The guide then concludes with a neighborhood mapping activity, designed to help students evaluate just how green their community is. If you are interested in downloading a free copy of this guide, it will be available soon.

This blog, then, will continue the work begun in that guide, linking early childhood teachers to developmentally appropriate, scientifically sound, hands-on activities to prepare young students to act in environmentally conscious ways. Many of the activities may be appropriate for science teachers, but will also have links across the curriculum, to literacy, math, social studies, and the arts.

The blog will contain new activities, links to resources on the web, field trip suggestions, and more. The goal of this blog is to reduce the amount of time teachers have to spend combing the internet for ideas and resources for their classroom. As such, if you have suggestions of great ideas or activities you would like to share with other educators, please email them to gogreen@brooklynkids.org or add them as comments to the blog entries!

Whether you’re here in New York City, or somewhere else around the world, we hope these ideas will help you in the classroom. Thanks for helping your students develop as environmental stewards and, again, please share with us any suggestions you have for other great learning experiences.kids investigate in the garden

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