Wednesday, November 27, 2013

School Age Storytime: Rainforest



K-3: Virtual Field Trip to the Rainforest -- Environmentally-based program incorporating fact-based imaginative fiction, stories and music plus a bilingual story set in Costa Rica, and the true story of a boy who struggled with stuttering and grew up to be a wildlife biologist and conservationist.
(This is a long program, I use different parts with different groups.)


Opened by asking – how can we go on a field trip with no buses outside?  -- through books & our own imaginations! 
 


Fernando’s Gift/El Regalo de Fernando -- 460 Kei  (this book set  is a wonderful bilingual fictionalized photo essay about a boy in Costa Rica who replants a tree near his home in the rain forest after a large tree is taken down -- great multicultural resource introduces both the value of the rain forest and a child's life in another country.   If not available, use  The Great Kapok Tree – Lynne Cherry Booktalk her Shaman’s Apprentice.)

Welcome to the Green House –  Jane Yolen (lyrical introduction to this environment -- if short for time, can just read the first couple of pages to "enter" this green house and point out the metaphor, Yolen also uses wonderful descriptive language “”the lunch of waking lizards” “the plunge of silver fish”.”a slide of coral snake through leaves” “a glide of butterflies through air”…)
 
Action: Rainstorm (see below) -- use when kids need a movement break


Book/song:  The Rainforest Grew all Around – Susan K. Mitchell (This variant on the echo & response song "The Green Grass Grew All Around" provides a wonderful complement to The Great Kapok Tree  (It also works very well alone) It depicts the life cycle from kapok seed to tree through many of the creatures who depend on that tree then full circle round to the seed pod that releases the seed for new growth. Discussed “circle of life” “eco-system” “conservation.”  Lots of additional information in the side panels -- including a great image depicting the size of a kapok tree relative to a 15 story building!  Booktalked: Verdi by Janell Cannon (A young python does not want to grow slow and boring like the older snakes in the jungle.)



Guessing Game Book: Looking Closely in the Rain Forest (578.734 SERAFINI) (picture windows reveal a small section of each rain forest animal and plant, turning the page reveals the whole along with fascinating facts about each one.)
 


 
A Boy and a Jaguar by Alan Rabinowitz  Based on a true story (Stuttering boy grows up to be a naturalist who helps set up a jaguar preserve in Belize – outstanding personal look at how it feels to have an isolating a disability and how his disability enabled his understanding of and empathy with animals.)  
 
Some classes/booktalk: Jaguar in the Rain Forest: A Just for a Day Book  – Joanne Ryder (child “morphs” into jaguar – great inspiration for a writing project, kids research animal but instead of regurgitating facts, they write a fiction story imagining what it would be like to be that animal.)
 
 
Movement interlude: Song/flannel/puppet: “Deep in the Jungle” by Joe Scruggs (from album of the same name) http://www.hellojoe.com/lyrics-ditj.html  (fun musical variant of the song about the croc-provoking monkeys) – no time 2016
 

 


Chameleon, Chameleon (597.966 COWLEY) (fabulous photos by Nic Bishop -- if you don't have time to show whole book, show the photo-spread of the chameleon's extended tongue!  -- and point out that if your tongue was the same length relative to your body, you could flick the nose of a child in the back row!)

Yikes! – Robert Florczak (everyone read together fluently with expression the words -- quick, wild, and funny conclusion celebrating the power of reading to transport you anywhere!)

Other possibilities:
Over in the Jungle – Marianne Collins Berkes (wonderful clay collage pictures illustrate this musical variation of "Over in the Meadow") – used with Kindergarten.
Where the Forest Meets the Sea – Jeannie Baker (thoughtful story of a young boy on a camping trip in an Australian rain forest imagines the creatures living there and the future when the rain forest might be gone.)
Delections from Looking for Jaguar and other Rainforest Poems – Susan Katz 811.54 (great poems celebrating the animals in the rainforest)

Create the Sounds of a Thunderstorm in the Classroom Submitted by Virginia in Idaho

When the entire class performs the actions in unison, the effect is the sound of a thunder and rain storm as it builds then dissipates. Create a thunderstorm.
The order is:
  1. rub your hands together
  2. snap your fingers
  3. clap your hands together in an irregular cadence
  4. slap your hands on your legs (at this time a student flicks a light switch on and off to represent lightning, while another beats a drum to symbolize thunder)
  5. stomp your feet
  6. slap your hands on your legs and stomp your feet (represents height of the storm)
  7. stomp your feet
  8. slap our hands on your legs
  9. clap your hands together in an irregular cadence
  10. snap your fingers
  11. rub your hands together
  12. open palms (quiet)

Have fun!
Sources: http://teachers.net/gazette/AUG03/storm.html
optional DVD: Reading Rainbow: The Salamander Room

5/12 Bedm
5/14 Bedm
5/15 Bedm: opened with "The Rainforest Grew All Around" (didn't do all the repetition), then shared "A Butterfly is Patient" because it had arrived too late for last week's storytime, pointed out long tongue illustration in "Chameleon, Chameleon," patience needed by animal researchers --> "A Boy and a Jaguar," (-->some classes: boy turns into a jaguar in "Jaguar in the Rain Forest"), action "rainstorm" and/or participation song/puppets "Deep in the Jungle..three little monkeys..."
5/16 Bedm  

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