Little House on the Prairie Books : My First Little House Series

I adored Little House on the Prairie books by Laura Ingalls Wilder when I was a child and was thrilled when one of the Creekside Learning Facebook followers told me about the My First Little House series.  This series is wonderful for younger kids, who are not quite ready for the chapter books. And, Little House on the Prairie Christmas is a great theme for literature and activities in December. 

Little House on the Prairie Christmas

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The My First Little House stories are based on the original Little House on the Prairie books.  The timing is a bit different in the First series. For example, most of the books include baby Carrie, Laura’s youngest sister in all the stories. In the original books, Carrie doesn’t appear until later, being much younger than her older sisters, Mary and Laura. But an introductory books to younger kids, that will only be noticed by the adults reading to them. This series is pure joy.

Christmas is a great time to discover these books because there are several Christmas themed books in the series. One of our favorites is Christmas in the Big Woods.  The book describes the very simple way that the Ingalls family celebrated Christmas, with a few simple gifts and some special foods.  

Little House on the Prairie Christmas

Little House Pancakes

Caroline Ingalls makes pancakes shaped like little men for the children to enjoy on Christmas.  This inspired us to make lots of different shaped pancakes. 

Little House on the Prairie Books by Laura Ingalls Wilder

 We took metal cookie cutters and filled them with pancake batter. You’ll want to grease the cookie cutters first with a little butter or some spray oil to prevent the batter from sticking. We flipped the pancakes over to the other side to cook, still inside the cookie cutters. Once both sides were done, the cookie cutters slipped right off and we had pretty shaped pancakes. 

Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House on the Prairie

 

 

Laura Ingalls Wilder 

 Little House Maple Syrup Snow Candy

In Laura’s chapter book, Little House in the Big Woods, the family helps Laura’s grandmother make Maple Sugar Snow Candy. This scene is also recreated in the book Christmas in the Big Woods in the My First Little House series.  For instructions on how to make maple syrup candy, click on the photo below.

Laura Ingalls Wilder Little House on the Prairie

This post is part of Rainy Day Mum’s Story Book Advent.   Click through to find more wonderful pairings of children’s holiday literature with go-along activities. More will be added throughout the season. 
Story Book Advent

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Describing With Adjectives

As kids learn to write creatively, picking up vivid sensory details is key.  Describing with adjectives that paint a picture and appeal to the reader’s senses is the goal. We love to learn via our favorite books and recently we were inspired by {affiliate link} Elephant and Piggie’s Should I Share My Ice Cream? by the amazing Mo Willems

Learning About Adjectives with Elephant and Piggie

In Should I Share My Ice Cream?, Gerald the Elephant describes his ice cream cone, using words like “tasty” and “sweet”.  The words are printed into the shape of an ice cream cone.  We thought that was pretty neat and decided to try it ourselves. 

Cut out some simple shapes with construction paper, grab some markers and you are ready to go.

You can have your child write the words, or you can write the words for them. The important thing is that they are thinking and coming up with great descriptive adjectives.

If your child gets stuck, here are some prompts to help.

Prompts for Describing With Adjectives

What color is it? What shape? What is it’s weight? What texture? Size? How does it behave?

Lets look at a real cloud/taste an actual ice cream cone and see if that inspires us.

For objects they cannot touch or see up close:  What does the cloud look like? What might it feel like, or smell like or taste like or sound like? 

See if your child can fill in the blank: “A butterfly’s wings are like…..”  They are as light as a…..”

More Resources for Learning Parts of Speech

For more ideas on how to develop kids as Creative Writers, visit our sponsor, Brave Writer.
Brave Writer creative writing curriculum for kids

Schoolhouse Rock video about adjectives: 

 

Top 10 Roald Dahl Book List ~ With Go-Along Activities

Roald Dahl is a master storyteller of some of the most fantastic tales in children’s literature. His books are some of the first chapter books that many children read and some of the most popular read-aloud books for families. Top 10 Roald Dahl Books with Activities Here is the top 10 Roald Dahl book list and some great activities to go along with them.  A”hands-on, learning-with literature-style” is such a great way to engage kids in learning

Why are these the top 10? Via careful research, i.e. looking at Amazon best sellers, Ranker.com, and crowdsourcing the Creekside Learning Facebook fans, I put together this list. If you feel another Dahl book should be on the list, leave me a comment at the end of the post. You can purchase any of Dahl’s books via the Creekside Learning Amazon affiliate link, at no extra cost, by clicking on the book titles below. 

  1. The BFG (Big Friendly Giant).   Make your own Dream Bottles and go see the play

    The BFG on Stage at Imagination Stage, Bethesda, MD

    The BFG on stage at Imagination Stage, Bethesda, MD. Image courtesy of Imagination Stage.

  2. George’s Marvelous Medicine. Grab some items from the medicine cabinet and pantry and let your kids make their own marvelous concoctions, just like George. 
  3. James and the Giant Peach. Accompany this book with an Insect Unit Study and of course, eat some delicious peaches. 
  4.  Matilda. Watch the movie, too, starring Danny Devito and Rhea Peralman as Matilda’s parents. 
  5.  Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  Create some wild and wonderful play dough candy creations.
  6.  Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator.  Make some fun table decorations, including a free printable
  7.  The Witches. Practice symmetrical art with a witch drawing
  8. The Magic Finger. Celebrate  Roald Dahl Day  in September. 
  9.  Fantastic Mr. Fox. Make a Mr. Fox marionette/puppet with recycled materials. 
  10.  The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me. Try some patterned giraffe art.  

Follow Creekside Learning on Facebook.

Come pin with us. Our Learning With Literature collaborative Pinterest board has more great ideas.  

Follow Julie Kirkwood, Creekside Learning’s board Learning With Literature on Pinterest. 

Poetry Contest Winners!

May I present to you the very talented kids who are the winners of the  Children’s Poetry Contest? Get yourself a little snack, perhaps a spot of tea, and sit down with your kids to enjoy these lovely poems. Let them inspire you! Thank you to all who entered and thank you to our wonderful sponsors. Most of all, thank you to Carla at Preschool Powol Packets who tirelessly organized an entire month of celebrating kids and poetry.

tea time poetry for kids

And the winners are… 

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Poetry For Kids ~ 10 Favorite Poetry Books

I am thrilled to be one of the co-hosts for the 2014 Kids Poetry Celebration and Contest! Poetry for kids is something we are passionate about in our house. Readers often ask me what poetry books we use and love.  There are so many, but these are the ones we come back to over and over again, the ones with the dog-eared dust jackets and chocolate smears from our Tuesday Tea Time snacks.  

Poetry for Kids :: 10 Favorite Books

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