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Naturally Educational » 9-12 (Middle Grades)

Hot Air Balloon Craft – Inspired by American Girl Saige

Hot Air Balloon Craft – Inspired by American Girl Saige

My daughter is really enjoying her Saige American Girl of the Year doll. She’s been reading the second book, Saige Paints the Sky. So, we decided to make a hot air balloon craft, inspired by Saige! Materials: inflated balloon glue, diluted with a few drops of water tissue paper yarn fishing wire plastic container raffia   Directions: 1. Tear or cut your tissue paper in strips.   2. Coat the balloon with the slightly diluted glue mixture. 3. Cover the balloon (except a small circle at the bottom) in … Read entire article »

Filed under: 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-12 (Middle Grades), Featured, Science

Elevate the Arts with American Girl of the Year, Saige Copeland — An Interview with Author Jessie Haas

Elevate the Arts with American Girl of the Year, Saige Copeland — An Interview with Author Jessie Haas

In Saige, the first book for the American Girl of the Year for 2013, Saige Copeland, author Jessie Haas shares an inspiring story about a young girl who loves painting and takes a stand for keeping the arts in her school. In the first book, Saige grows as an artist and as an equestrian, makes a new friend, develops a more mature relationship with a life-long friend, takes on new responsibilities, and helps save the arts … Read entire article »

Filed under: 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-12 (Middle Grades), Art, Featured, History and Culture

Join me for a LIVE chat with John Stephens, author of The Emerald Atlas! (1 PM EST April 24)

Join me for a LIVE chat with John Stephens, author of The Emerald Atlas! (1 PM EST April 24)

John Stephens, author of The Emerald Atlas, is joining the Random House Read & Play Community for a LIVE CHAT at 1pm EST on Tuesday, April 24. Are you a fan who cannot make the chat? Just leave a question below and we’ll do our best to ask it during the conversation! All responses will be archived. To join in, either use a BlogFrog account or you can login with Facebook! You can chat in the widget … Read entire article »

Filed under: 9-12 (Middle Grades), Featured

Books, Videos, and Websites About Vikings for Elementary Kids

Books, Videos, and Websites About Vikings for Elementary Kids

It’s a Viking raid here on Naturally Educational! My friend, Athena, is always exploring the most exciting topics with her three kids. Last year they delved into American pre-history and found themselves spending a bit of time on Vikings. Here are some of their favorite picture and chapter books about Vikings, primarily for elementary school-aged children.  The Vikings were always a favorite with my classes when I taught high school history, too. I cannot wait to … Read entire article »

Filed under: 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergartners), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-12 (Middle Grades), Featured, History and Culture

Native American Indian Medicine Bag for Kids

Native American Indian Medicine Bag for Kids

My daughter noticed the medicine bags when we were looking at pictures online of traditional Native American dress. So, we decided to make a simple one from felt. You can buy Medicine Bag Craft Kits that come with real leather. We made this inexpensive, young-kid-friendly version from felt and other materials we had around the house. While it may not be as accurate a recreation as an older child might make, making the Native American Indian … Read entire article »

Filed under: 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-12 (Middle Grades), Featured, History and Culture, Home Arts

How to Make a Flower Fairy

How to Make a Flower Fairy

We made these Flower Fairies in early summer but I am just getting around to posting them.  In the fall, we will make them with leaves. We had been wanting to make Flower Fairies for some time and I was inspired to finally give it a go when I saw these forest fairies at A New Bohemia during the Smart Summer Challenge. Materials: 1 wooden bead artificial flowers 2 chenille stems 1 metallic chenille stem embroidery floss or yarn glue dots or hot … Read entire article »

Filed under: 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergartners), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-12 (Middle Grades), Featured, Home Arts, Literacy, Spring, Summer

How Can Fiction Inspire Middle Grade Readers? Join Author John Bemis for a Live Chat

How Can Fiction Inspire Middle Grade Readers? Join Author John Bemis for a Live Chat

When I taught history in the classroom, I found that a handful of students came with a deep background level of knowledge of certain eras. Usually, they gained this information from reading historical fiction. The fiction narrative captivated them while the history lent meaning and realism to the text. I was very excited recently when I heard from Random House about the books by John Bemis. Bemis blends historical fiction with the stuff of legend to … Read entire article »

Filed under: 9-11 (Elementary), 9-12 (Middle Grades), History and Culture, Literacy