With winter here, plants tend to go through changes. Living in the rural mountains ourselves, we tend to have a variety of changes in our plant life. We have some species that thrive in the winter, others that tend to hibernate, and some that seem to not care if it is summer or winter. With this in mind I wanted to expand Beck and Elizabeth’s knowledge of plants and their cycles of life during the different seasons. When my contributor Ashley from Life with Moore Babies created these wonderful Paint Stirrer Snowmen for the Enchanted Homeschooling Mom blog readers in December, I just knew I could use them in some way with teaching about plants too! (Make sure to follow along with Ashley’s site as she is truly such a creative talent!)
So, my first thought was to create some sort of fun measuring stick for science. I thought long and hard and decided that if we walked around our property and then discussed our plants that there could be a fun way to incorporate taking measurements with it. It then dawned on me that I love Groundhog Day and since that is the point in time that winter decides to recede and let spring push through, or stay, it would be a great tie-in with scientifically observing plants.
In My Groundhog Day Plant Expedition you and your child, student, or family can take a walk around your property or neighborhood or go on a hike to observe the plants in your area. I designed this printable so that you can use it however many days that you wish. I intend to do a few plants each day and revisit the same plants every few days to track their progress. The measuring sticks will be used to measure each plants height and width so that the children can track them. There is a spot on the ‘My Groundhog Day Plant Expedition’ pages for them to write information about the day like date, plant name, temperature, cloud cover etc. Then, the page is completed when they draw a picture of what they see, make their measurements, and determine what life cycle stage the plant is in. This hands-on scientific expedition should be fun for children of all ages, especially 1st through 5th graders.
So, now that we are going to take a Groundhog Day Plant Expedition, I needed to make the wooden paint stirrers into a fun measuring tool as well. So, here is what I thought could be a fun way to tie in Groundhog Day…
I created a fun Groundhog Day themed variation to use on our Groundhog Day Plant Expedition! While you and your children, students, or family are on their expedition around your home, neighborhood, or favorite hiking trail be sure to take your Groundhog Measuring Sticks with you too!
To make your Groundhog Measuring Sticks you will need the following materials:
- Wooden Paint Stirring Stick
- Paints (Brushes sponges, etc.)
- Construction paper (black, brown, white)
- Pom-pom (black, small)
- Felt (white)
- Tape Measure or Ruler
- Permanent Marker
To make your Groundhog Measuring Stick follow these steps:
- Paint your wooden paint stirrer stick brown. I had Beck and Elizabeth apply washable tempura paint with a sponge to make it look like fur. Then, allow it to dry.
- While the paint is drying, cut out a hat, ears, feet, bow tie. To make the feet we used the permanent marker to make toes on brown construction paper. We then also cut teeth out of the felt.
- Once the paint is dry, use a ruler to mark one-inch increments from the bottom up the stick with the permanent marker. I found that 10 inches and about 27 cm was as far as we could go.
- Next attach the feet, bow tie, teeth, draw a smiling face, add the nose, eyes, ears, and hat to make your fun face at the top of the stirrer stick. To top ours off, Elizabeth used some festive yarn to make the hat special.
Voila, we now had Groundhog Measuring Sticks to take on our Groundhog Day Plant Expedition!
I hope you and your children, students, or family have fun on their Groundhog Day Plant Expedition with their new Ground Paint Stirrer Measuring Sticks, just like we will!
This printable, like most of my other printable creations, is available through my E.H.M. Member’s Only Website. What can I find at your members only website? You can expect printable curriculum, unit studies, activity packs, and more (there is a FREE catalog to flip through) for a $15.00 one-time lifetime fee! Perfect for teachers, homeschoolers, and parents looking for classroom and after school enrichment. Please click HERE to find out how you can join my Member’s Only Website!
Clip Art Used In This Printable Is By: