Good Morning Folks! On this blog Grandma will put October activities for the 1800's and 1900' on this blog.
"Confounded collectors: Tell your (children) these unusual words for collectors of different things: deltiologist (postcards), numismatist (coins), comiconomen-caricaturist (funny names of people, bibliophile (books). Have (the children) investigate the root words for these terms. Next, ask them what they collect. Is there a special term for people with those collections? If no, what words can your (children) make up? For example, how about "fluffacritterologist" for the person who collects stuffed animals? (what about rock collectors)
Variations on a theme park: Disney World boasts many special areas, called "lands," where all the rides, attractions, and characters follow a theme. These areas include Fantasy land, Frontier land, and Tomorrow land. What new "lands" would your students want to include? How about "Retro land," with a back -in-time theme? or "Computor land," where computers do everything? Invite the kids to draw and write about their suggested new "land."
Honors to Mrs. Mallard: Robert McCloskey spent months studying ducks--even sharing his apartment and bathtub with them. The result was his award-winning picture book Make Way for Ducklings. A bronze sculpture commemorating Mrs. Mallard and her eight ducklings can be seen at the Boston Public Garden. What suggestions do your students have for commemorating their favorite animal stories?
Savers: During the first presidential telecast from the White House, President Truman asked Americans to reduce their consumption of meat, eggs, and poultry-- to build up stockpiles of grain for war-ravaged Europe. Have your (children) think of an item or items that they could "do without" for a day to help a cause. Perhaps you could include other classrooms in a plan to designate one day each month as do-Without-for-a-Cause Day.
The world's greatest inventor: Thomas Edison's Kinetoscope projected a clearer, steadier image than other projectors and screen devices. During his lifetime, Edison developed an incredible number of inventions. Have your (children) graph his contributions according to the following categories: electronic light and power, 389; phonograph, 195; telegraph, 150; storage battery and related items, 141; ore separation, 62; telephone, 62; railroad, 26; motion pictures, 9; automobile, 8; mimeograph, 6; typewriter, 3.
Movie first: The Jazz Singer, called the first talking motion picture, was actually more silent than talking. Al Jolson, a popular singer who was the movie's star, belted out three songs and spoke the words "You ain't heard nothin' yet, folks," giving the film a total of 291 spoken words. The rest of the film was silent with captions. The first all talking movie, The Lights of New York, came out the following year, 1928.
Tell your (children) that when The Jazz Singer premiered, some people predicted that talking pictures would never succeed. Similar views have been expressed about the automobile, the computer, and the automatic teller machine. Lead a discussion on why people often turn away from new ideas and technologies. Ask your (children) to list things that they believe won't become an accepted part of our culture.
Rosy pick: Before the rose was selected as the national flower, 70 bills proposing other flowers were introduced. How do your (children) feel about the choice of the rose? What flowers would they have suggested, and why? Have them prepare a brief informational report, with an illustration, for their nominations. Take a vote.
Fire stoppers: The Great Chicago Fire destroyed 18,000 buildings and left 100,000 people homeless. Have your (children) identify potential fire hazards in their home ... . If any students don't have the local fire department's number on their home phone, have them write it on a self-adhesive label ... , and put it there.
Fairy tales, opera style: Tell your (children) that an opera is a story told in song. Then play some of Engelbert Humperdinck's opera Hansel and Gretel. Have the kids select a favorite fairy tale or story and divide the plot into three acts. Challenge them to select popular music that would be appropriate for the plot, rewriting the lyrics if they want. Then they could perform the fairy tale as a puppet show for younger students.
A Perfect day: In 1956 Don Larsen realized a baseball pitcher's ultimate dream when he pitched a perfect game. Invite your (children) to describe their perfect day. For some, this "day in the sun" might already have happened. For others, it might be a cherished dream.
More than Money: In 1843 Charles Dickens found himself desperate for money. He needed to produce a book that would be a quick and sure success, so he lifted a subplot from his already-published novel The Pickwick Papers and called it A Christmas Carol. But Dickens fell in love with his story. Despite his financial straits, he priced the book as cheaply as possible so more readers could buy it. Ask your (children) to write about a situation that produced a change of heart in them.
To fingerprint or not to fingerprint: Fingerprinting has been around for at least 3,000 years. The ancient Chinese used fingerprints as official seals on documents. More recently, law-enforcement agencies have used fingerprinting to identify crime suspects. Your (children) may be aware of an even-newer trend: Certain local police departments, parent groups, clubs, and schools have begun fingerprinting children to help locate these children should they become missing. Some people feel this is a violation of children's civil rights, especially if the prints are controlled by an official agency. What do your (children) think? Have them list pros and cons--and alternatives.
Costume Party: Instead of wearing the traditional white tie and dress coat with tails, Griswold Lorillard wore a tailless jacket and a scarlet satin vest to a ball in Tuxedo Park, N.Y. This new look was dubbed the tuxedo. Ask your (children) to think of an outfit they'd like to rent for a day. It might be a suit of armor, a clown's costume, a spacesuit, scuba gear, or a fire fighter's uniform. Have each child explain the reason for his selection in this journal.
In the bag: Years ago, the bicycle was an important mode of travel. For this reason, the luggage carrier, designed especially for use with bikes, was quite popular. Have each student sketch the outline of a piece of luggage and inside draw four items a favorite book character might pack. Divide the class into groups, and have group members take turns showing their drawings while the others guess who would carry the luggage.
Famous First Lady: In This Is My Story, Eleanor Roosevelt wrote, "No one can make you feel inferior without your consent." Ask your (children) what she meant by that remark. Can your (children) remember when someone damaged their self-confidence or tried to put them down? How did they feel, and what did they do about it?
As a young girl, Eleanor Roosevelt was extremely shy. When have your (children) felt that way? What did they do to overcome their shyness? (Grandma can partially agree with Eleanor. Grandma believes she was a very famous woman and found ways to hold strong but she says these things in her books to keep children and adults from feeling bad or low, but it is awfully hard for some children to come to these conclusions when they are young and don't know these words spoken by Eleanor. They can go into life feeling they were unworthy and still are to society especially if they are a little more enthusiastic than the down trodders about them. They let their own guard down when they didn't even know what their guards were.Some people have a harder time dealing with their emotions than others also. In all reality the people or children putting others down are those that hold there own emotions as a sword to downtrodden the world.)
Home of the bard: The Globe Theater, the largest open-air theater in London, held about 2,500 people. Shakespeare's plays appealed to a diverse audience, so the theater was built to accommodate members of the upper and lower classes. Ordinary people stood in the "pit" area below the stage, while the wealthy sat in tiered galleries. Do your (children) think they live in a society that has a class system? Why or why not.
New perspective: Have your (children) pretend they're in a balloon hovering above the (house). What would the building look like? What about the shrubs and trees? The jungle gym and swings? Students at play during recess? Challenge the kids to draw an aerial view of the school. Then have them discuss their illustrations in small groups.
Nicknames: Theodore Roosevelt had many nicknames, including Bull Moose, Driving Force, Dynamo of Power, Four eyes, Man on Horseback, Old Lion, T.R., Hero of San Juan Hill, and Meddler. Challenge your (children) to find out the origins of these nicknames. Then invite them to share the stories behind their nicknames.
Pooh party!: Celebrate the debut of Winnie the Pooh with a theme party. Invite your kids to make Pooh-related decorations. Encourage them to bring a stuffed Pooh character or a favorite stuffed animal dressed like pooh or one of his friends from the Hundred Acre Wood. Read one of the Pooh stories while your (children) enjoy a special snack, such as Kanga Kupcakes or Piglet's Popcorn. How about Pooh's honey.
Up and Away: Major Charles E. Yeager became the first person to travel faster than the speed of sound (Oct. 14, 1947). His flight, at an altitude of 43,000 feet above sea level, was clocked at 700 mph. How does that speed compare with the speed of a jogger, a bicycle rider, and Indy 500 race car, and a charging rhinoceros? Tell your (children) that the first time Yeager flew, he got very sick. But he loved the feel of flight so much that he forced himself to overcome this sensitivity. Did any of your (children) keep plugging away at something until they got better at it? Invite them to share their personal stories.
Balloon ride: Ask your (children) to find out the difference between a hot-air balloon and a dirigible. (A dirigible has a hard internal framework and is kept aloft by lighter-than-air gases, whereas a hot-air balloon relies on heated air and does not have an infrastructure.)
Trillion tickler(based on a discovery of a solar system to be 293 trillion miles from earth Oct. 15, 1984): Here's how to make 293 trillion more comprehensible to your (children). Have them use calculators to determine their approximate age in days, then in hours, then in minutes. When they figure out their age in seconds, they'll be working with numbers in the hundreds of millions! challenge them to figure out how many years old they'd be at one trillion seconds. (319.7.) Can anyone figure out how many round trips to the sun would equal 293 trillion miles? (5,376 trips) For younger students, pass out 12 large zeros plus a one and have them line up to form one trillion.
Big birds: You'd expect to find ostriches--the world's largest living birds--in Africa, but how about in Oklahoma? (In the Okie Ostrich Ranch of Marlow, Okla. opened Oct. 15, 1986) When profits from traditional farm products such as cattle and wheat dropped, some ranchers in southern Oklahoma turned to a new industry--ostriches. Getting started isn't cheap; people have spent up to $10,000 for one breeding pair. Ostrich meat tastes like a combination of pork and turkey, and ostrich hide is used to make boots, gloves, and purses. Do your (children) believe that ostriches really stick their heads in sand? Ask them to list other animal myths.
Helping hands: Mother Teresa's religious order, the Missionaries of Charity, provides food, shelter, and medical care for the needy in about 30 countries. Ask the kids to comment on the saying "Charity begins at home." What are some suggestions they have for helping the less fortunate of their community?(Based on her award of the Nobel Peace Prize Oct. 17, 1979.)
Women's rights advocate: Even as a young girl, Lucy Stone was ware of the unequal status of women. When she married Henry Blackwell in 1858, she became the first woman to keep her maiden name. Nowadays, many women chose not to use their husband's last name. They're called "lucy stoners." Can your (children) think of other common nouns based on personal names?
Mr. October et al: Reggie Jackson was called Mr. October. Ask your (children) why this nickname was appropriate. Then have them think of other baseball players' nicknames--for example the Sultan of Swat (Babe Ruth), the Say Hey Kid (Willie Mays), the splendid splinter (Ted Williams), the Iron Horse (Lou Gehrig). Have the kids draw a picture that illustrates a baseball nickname literally. For example, an illustration o Dwight Gooden's nickname, Dr. K, might show the letter K adorned with a stethoscope and surgical mask.
Child adviser: While campaigning for the presidency, Abraham Lincoln received baskets of mail every day. And he took the advice of 11-year-old Grace Bedell, whose letter suggested that he grow a beard because "Your face is so thin" and "the ladies like whiskers." After the election, Lincoln stopped in Westfield, N.Y. to meet his young adviser. Ask your (children) why Lincoln is such a recognizable president. Which other presidents are physically distinctive? Then compare political cartoons with photos of today's leaders. How do the cartoonists make their subjects so recognizable?
Rocket Man: When Robert Goddard was a boy, he'd climb an oak tree at night, look at the moon, and imagine he could travel there on a rocket. His imagination was fired by two of H.G. Wells's books, First Men on the Moon and War of the Worlds, which were filled with imaginative predictions of space travel. Invite your (children) to share book titles and stories that have fired their imaginations.
Museum in the round: Architect Frank Lloyd Wright used right angles in most of his building designs, but he was in a "circular mood" when he planned the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. Wright's finished design looked like a giant spiral sculpture. Show your (children) a picture of the Goggenheim Museum. Tell them that some people call the building a "giant snail," whereas others think it's "the most beautiful building in New York." How do your (children) feel? What other buildings or structures do they think of as giant works of art?
Copy king: As a law student, Chester Carlson spent hours copying information from library books. And he worked in a patent office, where making multiple copies of patents was a laborious task. To find an easier way to get copies, he built his own laboratory and developed xerography. Years after investing in Carlson's process, the Haloid Company changed its name to Xerox Corporation. The corporation is proud of its name and history and objects when people use "xerox" as a synonym for "photocopy." How do your (children) feel about Xerox's point of view? Can they think of other trade names--such as Kleenex and Plexiglas--that are misused as common nouns?
First flying female: Seven years after the Wright brothers flew a heavier-than-air machine, Blanche Scott became the first woman to fly solo. She later became the first woman test pilot. Blanche Scott, entered a field that had been "for Men only" Today, women pursue a wide range of careers in aviation. Ask your (children) to list these careers. What jobs are still for men only or women only?
A right for all: From colonial times on, groups of women worked to gain the right to vote, often in the face of great opposition. Why, do your (children) think, were some men opposed? And why were some women opposed? Invite your (children) to pretend they've joined the "march for suffrage." Have them design a poster they could carry, compose a song they could sing, or write a slogan they could shout as they march.
Fall gal: Annie Edson Taylor wanted to prove how daring she could be. She placed a 100-pound blacksmith's anvil (for ballast) at the bottom of a wood barrel and squeezed herself inside. Attendants packed pillows around her, screwed the lid on tight, and pushed the barrel toward Niagara Falls. The barrel plummeted 158 feet straight down and disappeared beneath the turbulent water. It finally popped up hundreds of yards below the falls. When rescuers recovered her, Taylor said, "Nobody ought ever to do that again." Have your (children) figure out how many desks they'd need to stack to match the distance of Taylor's fall. As a special challenge, give (your children) a paper bag and a raw egg. Have them devise a way to prevent the egg from breaking in a fall. Test their ideas by dropping their inventions from various heights. (Discuss why Annie Taylor said what she did in the end. Discuss what she may have gone through during that fall to feel that way.)
Bitten by the love bug: A bull moose in Vermont spent over 10 weeks following a Hereford cow named Jessica. Thousands of sightseers watched the moose woo and nuzzle its bovine sweetheart. Tell your (children) that a moose in the woods is well camouflaged: Its legs blend with the tree trunks; its brown body fades into the shadows; and its antlers look like branches. Ask your (children) to draw other animals that rely on camouflage. (Also have the children do some research to see if this kind of a phenomena can happen often and what the outcome could be.)
Backbreaker: The Erie Canal was completed after 8 years of construction. Using wheelbarrows, shovels, and other hand tools, the crew dug a ditch 4 feet deep, 40 feet wide at ground level, and 28 feet wide at the base. Eighty-three locks were built to enable ships to make the climb from the Hudson River to Lake Erie. Have your (children)use a map scale in their atlas to figure out the length of the canal, which runs from Albany to Buffalo, N.Y.
Class charity: Raise money for a Red Cross charity by holding a used-toy sale. Ask your (children) to collect old toys, and arrange them by price--25¢, 50¢, $1, and so on. ... make posters advertising the event, send invitations, produce a video about the event and its purpose, and speak about the event ....
Book math: After outgrowing its 88 miles of stacks, the New York Public Library began building an underground extension. Books stored there will be brought to the main library when needed. The extension, which will hold 3.2 million books, should fill up fast because the library acquires over 150,000 books each year. Ask your (children) to estimate the number of books in their library. Collect enough books to make a stack 1 meter high. Then have the kids use this information to estimate how many meters high all the books in their library stacked together would reach. Can your (children) think of other ways to solve this problem? Ask your librarian to check your class's estimate.
Determined record-breaker: Pole-sitter Melissa Sanders was determined to raise $100,000 for cancer research. Her sister Rebecca was a cancer patient. Tell your (children) that Melissa's pole-top "home," which was a 42-square-foot box, included a telephone, a television, and a small plastic pool for baths. Ask your (children) what they would take with them if they were attempting to break Melissa's record. Have them use grid paper to determine some possible shapes for a 42-square-foot "home." (42-square feet is still quite a bit of space.)
Masses welcome: The sonnet "The New Colossus," by Emma Lazarus, is inscribed on a bronze plaque inside the Statue of Liberty's pedestal. Read it to your students, then have them write their own inscriptions for the Statue of Liberty in their journals. (This would be a good time to talk about the Statue of Liberty and where it came from.)
Peeking at prints: Try some dactyloscopy (fingerprinting) with your class. Have your (children) rub a sharpened #2 pencil on a piece of paper until they've produced a dark, shiny patch. Next, they should lightly rub their index finger over the patch, then cover that finger with a piece of clear adhesive tape. Place the tape on an index card or on an overhead transparency. Have your (children) compare fingerprints and make observations. Tell them that a police computer can examine over 600 prints per second. How many is that per minute? Per hour?
Cloud capers: Throughout history, people have tried to change the weather. They've chanted, danced, and even fired rockets. Modern technology has enabled scientists to modify the weather somewhat. With cloud seeding, dry ice or silver iodide is added to very cold clouds to promote the formation of ice crystals.This method can clear fog over airports and increase precipitation by up to 30 percent in certain circumstances. Ask (the children) to illustrate other ways humans have successfully dealt with the weather (heaters, air conditioners, humidifiers, irrigation systems, landscaping techniques).
Next , follow this simple procedure to create a cloud for your (children). Pour about an inch of very hot water into a large glass jar. Then fill a metal cake pan with ice cubes and place it on top of the jar. Take the jar into a darkened room and shine a flashlight on it. Your (children) will see a small cloud and, if they're observant, drops of precipitation on the bottom of the pan.
Power of the pen: As a journal assignment, have your (children) compare and contrast a fountain pen and a ballpoint pen. ...Encourage the kids to write a letter--from the fountain pen's perspective--describing its feelings about being obsolete. What do your (children) own that might be obsolete by the time they're adults?
Black Hills stone faces: Sculptor Gutzon Borglum needed to select four presidents to memorialize on Mount Rushmore. He looked for leaders who practiced the ideal "Man has a right to be free and to be happy." His first three choices--Washington, Jefferson, and Lincoln--were obvious. For the fourth, President Calvin Coolidge suggested Theodore Roosevelt, who, he believed, had established the United States as an industrial giant with a backbone of dedicated workers. With this endorsement, Borglum's group was complete. Have your (children) nominate and vote on four present-day leaders they'd memorialize on a Rushmore-like monument.
Kid power: On Halloween morning in 1987, the pickup truck driven by Rocky Lyonns's mother hit a pothole. It flipped over and rolled down an embankment. Five-year-old Rocky pushed his dazed mother out of the truck. She'd sustained bad cuts on her face and two broken shoulders. With Rocky pushing his mother from behind, the two began to crawl up the embankment. Rocky's mother didn't think she could make it, but the boy kept repeating a line from The Little Engine That Could: "I think I can, I think I can." Once they reached the road, a truck driver stopped and took them to the hospital. Have the famous words "I think I can" ever gotten your (children) through a tough situation?"