This Leap Year – Stick!

Posted by on Mar 1, 2012 in Body Smart, Early Learning, Holiday, Logic Smart, Nature Smart, People Smart, Self Smart | 0 comments

With a title like Stick, you might not think this book by Steve Breen will work for a Leap Year celebration, but it will! Stick is an independent young frog; he likes to do things on his own, thank you very much. He doesn’t want help from his mom or anyone, until he “bites off more than he can chew” by zapping a dragonfly with his tongue. Now Stick is stuck – to a wildly flying dragonfly who pulls him, by the tongue, through the swamp and into New Orleans. His crazy adventure (which involves being plastered to the face of a motorcyclist and soaring on the beak of a seagull) brings him home only after he realizes that sometimes it’s good to ask for help.

After singing “Five Green and Speckled Frogs” (I encourage kids to leap like frogs every time one jumps into the pool), try this cooperative learning activity. We encourage our kids to be independent and that’s good, but it’s also good to be able to ask for help and to work as a team. For kids who prefer to do tasks alone, cooperative tasks can be challenging – especially if those kids feel they’d be able to complete the job better on their own! For a great cooperative learning activity, give your students jigsaw puzzles that are relatively challenging. Let them work in pairs or teams to put the puzzle together. This activity won’t be graded, so independent students who worry about others negatively affecting their grades can rest easy. Make sure the puzzles are hard enough to show those Self Smart kids that some things really are easier when we work together. It’s such a fun way to learn teamwork, you won’t want to wait four more years for your next Leap Year party to try it!

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