Theme based teaching has not been hugely popular in Australia for the last decade or so. It IS possible though, to integrate theme-based resources into your program AND maintain a very high standard of teaching and learning. I have actually found that by using a theme or holiday as a base for an activity, I can achieve much higher student engagement. The key is to choose themes and holidays that are meaningful for your particular class and community of learners.
Meaningful CAN be something that is not a usual part of the children's lives. Children LOVE to learn about different cultures and what is happening in the world around them. Our world is becoming a whole lot smaller these days, and our students are becoming more aware of other countries and cultures.
I like to use a 'theme' in my classroom, and weave it into my regular skills-based learning activities. A little 'input' lesson, where I explore the topic or theme with the students, is sufficient to give the students some background on a topic.
I have been putting together some 'Print Packs' that are a 'sampler' of sorts, in that they contain resources from some of my core teaching resources, but have a themed-spin on them! I have just finished one for St Patrick's Day.
St. Patrick's Day is a cultural and religious holiday celebrated on the 17th March. It is a day of celebrating Irish culture and heritage in general, and will give you a good opportunity for you to talk about other cultures with your students. In Australia around this time, we have Harmony Day, a day of acceptance and celebration of other cultures - why not combine them!?
Included in this pack, is a template to make a Leprechaun. There is an emphasis on 2D regular shapes in this craft - integrate it with a mathematics lesson!
There is a simple writing activity, provided in 4 style sot cater for a variety of learners in your classroom.
An 'emergent reader' that has a cut-and-paste component....
and a few 'puzzle paste' activities. In these, students cut and paste pieces to create a picture while matching and ordering numbers.
When completing 'puzzle pastes' - teach your students to just place glue on the top edge of each piece. Then, your students will be able to lift the piece and see the matching number underneath.
There is so much in this packet, I have not got everything featured here, but I think you will get the idea. There are 'print and play' games....
And a number match worksheet...
I have also made a 'pattern block' shamrock for you to use. It is NOT in the file, but is loaded on Google Drive, and you can grab it by clicking on the image below. I suggest you ask students to use REAL pattern blocks to try to make a shamrock in this shape, before they do the cut-and-paste component.
Thank you for stopping by friends!