Friday, January 11, 2013

Snowflake Symmetry, Snowman Life Cycle & More!

I guess Amy and I are secretly hoping for some snow, because it is ALL about snow in our classroom!! And our kids are really enjoying it :) Now if we could just get a snow day here in a couple weeks...
We did a lesson today on symmetry. I started off by showing them pictures of real snowflakes on the Smartboard. They LOVED them! We discussed what they noticed {they all had 6 sides, both sides were the same, etc}. This led into a great discussion about symmetry. They brainstormed other items around the room that had symmetry and practiced drawing lines of symmetry on the snowflakes. Then the kids got to make their own symmetrical snowflakes {idea originally from Cara Carroll}. I just love the way they turned out :) And this fits in perfectly with our Everyday Math unit about lines, shapes and symmetry :)
We read Dream Snow by Eric Carle. After reading and discussing, we told our kids to think of anything they'd want to draw. They would then need to describe it because we would be hiding it under the snow! They then read their description to their small group, and their friends had to try and guess what was hidden in the snow! They loved this and did an amazing job! We reminded them that the goal was to get their group to guess what was hidden {and if their friends couldn't guess it, they would need to add more descriptions!} This was a great reminder and informal assessment on their descriptive writing :)

{The picture above was written by one of our ELL students! We were so proud of her!}
We also learned about the states of matter by observing the life cycle of a snowman! I originally saw this idea on Pinterest, through Louise and The Frugal Teacher. We tweaked the idea a bit so that we could do the lesson in about 45 minutes. You'll need an electric skillet and a snowman :) We got ice from Sonic and it worked perfectly! The kids are able to see the solid, liquid and gas. I wish I could tell you what all we talked about, but I honestly can't remember because Amy and I just kept bouncing ideas off of each other. I will say that after the lesson, we both felt like we had had an AWESOME discussion with our kids and that they really got it!

After observing and discussing, our kids filled out The Life Cycle of a Snowman sheet I made {pick up your free copy HERE!}
And lastly, I wanted to leave you with a picture of some of our Snowman Glyphs! Enjoy :) And don't forget to pick up a copy {HERE} for your snowy unit!


  1. Love your snowman!

    I am Simply Kinder (and I also run Simply Centers!) We should collaborate on a project or two! =) (I could not find your email on your profile... sorry for the comment with that in it!)

    Jen from Simply Kinder

  2. Love the snowmen Lauren! The life cycle of the snowman is too cute!

  3. Wonderful post!! THANKS for the ideas-you never let us down with your informational posts!

  4. How did you manage to stack the ice to make a snowman. I am aiming to conduct the activity in the same time frame as you. Any advice is appreciated.

  5. I used a small snowcone machine to do the lifecycle of a snowman. That was by far, one of the CUTEST activities ever!

  6. Where did you find the pre-cut shapes for your snowflakes?