It’s August already and we are starting to see a change in the seasons. Here in the Southern Hemisphere we are getting ready for Spring, while in the Northern Hemisphere, you are maybe hoping things will start to cool soon. Wherever we are, it seems the uncertainty caused by the pandemic still has us in its grip. I think I’d probably be right in saying that we’d all like that to change, and soon.
The help lighten your workload and inject something a little different into the routine, I’ve listed some special days and events you might like to celebrate in the classroom this month.
The MS Readathon runs throughout the month of August. The purpose of the MS Readathon is to encourage children to read and, at the same time, raise money to help kids who have a parent with multiple sclerosis. Teachers can register their class or children can register individually. Find out more and download some great resources from their website.
The Horses’ Birthday is celebrated on 1 August in the Southern Hemisphere. Horses born after 1 August in will be considered one year old on 1 August the following year.
In the Northern Hemisphere, 1 January is recognised as the horses’ birthday. The dates are chosen as most foals are born in late winter.
Why not celebrate with a carrot cake, or give your favourite horse a carrot treat?
Children may enjoy discussing the question, “What if we had a people’s birthday, and celebrated everyone’s birthday on the same day, regardless of when they were born?”
Some horse-related resources from readilearn:
Jacqui Halpin’s picture book Parmesan the Reluctant Racehorse is a great one to read to aid the celebration.
Who’s who on the farm introduces children to farm animals (including horses). It provides them with the names of male, female and baby animals as well as the names given to groups of animals.
On the farm Who am I? presents written clues for the children to read and pictures from which they select the answers.
The repetitive texts support beginning readers as they learn to recognise sight words and use initial sound cues.
National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s Day is celebrated on 4 August each year. This year’s theme is We are the elders of tomorrow, hear our voice.
“Children’s Day is a time to for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families to celebrate the strengths and culture of their children. The day is an opportunity for all Australians to show their support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, as well as learn about the crucial impact that culture, family and community play in the life of every child.”
The organisation invites you to explore their website for ideas and resources to assist your celebration in the changing times of 2020.
The purpose of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples held on 9 August is to recognise the importance of protecting indigenous peoples and maintaining their customs and traditions.
This year’s theme is COVID-19 and indigenous peoples’ resistance. “a special event will feature a panel discussion on the innovative ways indigenous peoples continue demonstrating resilience and strength in the face of the pandemic, while confronting grave threats to their survival.”
Book Lovers Day is also held on 9 August. This is an easy one to celebrate. Grab a book you love and read. Read aloud to the children as many times as you can throughout the day, and give them time for independent reading, of their choice, too. Why not make a bookmark, or write a book, to give to another who loves books as much as you do.
The theme for this year’s National Science Week is Deep Blue: innovations for the future of our oceans. The week runs from 15 – 23 August and provides an opportunity to learn more about marine science and discover the importance of our oceans and their effect on climate.
While the celebrations will be a little different this year due to COVID-19 restrictions, there are still many ways that teachers and students, and parents who are homeschooling, can be involved. Ideas and resources can be found on the website or in this article from the ACER Teacher Magazine.
readilearn’s ocean-themed resources
At readilearn we also have some sea-themed resources which you may find useful.
Let’s find out about Sea Turtles is an interactive nonfiction text for use on the interactive whiteboard.
It is suitable for use in the first three years of school when children are learning about
– living things
– the needs of living things
– features of living things
– life stages of living things
What do you know about Sea Turtles? is a quiz that follows up on information explored in Let’s find out about Sea Turtles.
Other turtle-themed resources include:
Ten Tiny Turtles — an interactive lesson for adding numbers to ten
Turtle tens and ones — printable resources for teaching place value and other number concepts
Turtle Island — a printable game for teaching directions such as forwards, backwards, left, right
Interactive 9 square turtle puzzle — a fun puzzle to solve on the interactive whiteboard
Poet’s Day on 21 August is a great excuse for adding a little more poetry into your program, but really, no excuse is necessary. Poetry is a great way of introducing children to the rhythms and sounds of our language.
Being early childhood teachers, we have the advantage of reading picture books to children every day. Many picture books read like poetry or contain aspects of poetry, including rhythm, rhyme, metaphors, similes, assonance and consonance. You do not have to look far for examples of these and more.
But why not find some books of poetry to read to children anyway or write some together?
There are also some great websites of poetry for children, including:
Australian Children’s Poetry A new poem is added to the collection every day.
(Sadly, Michael was hit by the coronavirus. He was quite ill and hospitalised for a number of weeks. Gladly, he is now out of hospital and recovering.)
Jennifer Poulter’s Facebook page Jennifer is a prolific writer of poetry for children and frequently uploads free poems and teacher notes to her Facebook page. Follow her for access.
readilearn’s resources for teaching poetry
Here at readilearn, we also have blog posts and resources to support your teaching of poetry, including:
Christmas poetry — writing with children provides lessons, examples and templates for teaching five different poetry forms that are easy for even young children to write.
If You Were an Animal — poem and teaching notes presents a poem that is equally suited to the English as the science curriculum.
Write your own “I love” poem provides resources for innovating on the traditional camping song ‘I Love the Mountains’.
Let’s read and write with Little Miss Muffet presents a series of lessons based on the rhyme to support learning in reading and writing and the development of oral language and imagination.
Find my rhyme is an interactive lesson for introducing rhyme to children.
Animal Rhyme Time provides a list of one-syllable animal names and words that rhyme with them. It’s a useful reference for writing rhyming stories and poems about animals.
Ten Tiny Turtles is a poem that can be used in conjunction with other work about turtles or read independently for poetic enjoyment.
Another date we are looking forward to celebrating this month is readilearn’s 4th birthday on the 24th.
Thank you for sharing the journey with me. I appreciate your ongoing support.
This list of August days and events is now available to download and print free from readilearn teaching resources.
While you are here, remember to check out the complete readilearn collection of
over 400 teaching resources for the first three years of school
Resources beyond worksheets – lessons for teachers made by teachers.
Let readilearn lighten your workload.
I appreciate your feedback and comments. Please share your thoughts below.
Follow Blog By Email