April is full of fun learning opportunities such as National Poetry Month, Arbor Day, and John James Audubon’s birthday. Here are some simple and creative learning ideas for April.
National Poetry Month
National Poetry Month is a great time to introduce your children to the world of poetry. By starting with highly engaging poems, you increase the chance of lighting an interest in poetry so choose poems that will grab the attention of your particular child. Even poems that might be considered twaddle by some can be a good choice if it makes poetry interesting!
- Keep a collection of age-appropriate poetry books for your children to read during quiet reading time or when they finish their work.
- Highlight a different poet each day by reading aloud a poem. If daily is too much, focus on a different poet each week and read a different poem by him or her each day that week.
- Have your children write poetry. Depending on their writing level, have them write a traditional long-form poem or do something simpler like an acrostic poem or haiku.
National Lawn and Garden Month
When spring arrives, everyone is ready to be outdoors! Learn about the importance of gardening and how it can be both fun and beneficial.
- Grow something! If you need to start simple, plant beans in cups or sprout them in a baggie with damp paper towel. Other easy plants to grow include sweet potatoes and grass. Each one will sprout and grow quickly.
- Focus on flowers! Purchase a bouquet of flowers and discuss the various kinds of flowers, their unique characteristics, and how they are grown. If your children need some art time, have them draw a flower or the bouquet.
- Explore fascinating facts with my Flowers and Plants Fun Fact Cards. Children love learning these little tidbits!
- Have your children design their own backyard gardens with flowers, vegetables, and/or fruits that are appropriate to where you live. Have them draw a diagram of what they would like to grow and where. If you want to add some math practice, price out what it would cost to bring their garden dreams to reality.
- Use my Garden Activity Pack for printable activities.
While many families learn about trees in the fall, Arbor Day is a great time to think about the role trees play in the world.
- Complete an Arbor Day KWL to get the learning started. You might be surprised what your children bring up in the process.
- Research the importance of trees. Make a basic lapbook about trees, highlighting their parts, how they grow, and the importance they play in the world.
- Visit a local nursery and purchase a tree to take home and plant.
- Create a “Trees Are Important” collage. Cut out or draw pictures of things we get from the various parts of trees.
- Use my Tree Fun Fact Cards to explore interesting facts about trees.
Famous April Birthdays
Several important people were born in April. Take the opportunity to celebrate their important contributions to the world.
Hans Christian Andersen (April 2)
- Select several books with stories and fairy tales by Hans Christen Anderson. Make them available to your children to peruse when they have time.
- Read aloud a few favorite stories and have your children illustrate their favorite.
Thomas Jefferson (April 13)
- Introduce students to Jefferson and Monticello. Using a book or the internet, explore the beauties of Jefferson’s home.
- Research Jefferson’s gravestone and what is engraved on there. Discuss why he wanted certain accomplishments on the stone and why others were left off.
William Shakespeare (April 23)
- Learn about plays and the theater.
- Discuss why Shakespeare is still so popular hundreds of years later.
- Show students a clip of a Shakespearean play so they can get a feel for the costumes and language.
- Watch an entire play if your children are old enough to follow along and understand the story.
- Have older students prepare a short scene from one of Shakespeare’s works and perform it for the younger students.
John James Audubon (April 26)
- Using a book with Audubon’s illustrations, discuss the importance of his accomplishments.
- Explore why Audubon was so popular in Europe and was nicknamed “the American woodsman.”
- Have students create a bird book of their own that features birds prominent in their area.
- Learn more about birds with my Birds Fun Fact Cards.
Have a wonderful month of learning!