Sunday, May 19, 2013

Habitats Mentor Text: Log Hotel and a FREEBIE

Happy Sunday!

My Sunday has not been very sunny, but I've still had a good day.  Actually, I've had a really good weekend all around having fun with friends, as well as getting lots of errands and other work done.

On Friday, I experienced Medieval Times for the first time.  Medieval Times is a Medieval-themed dinner theater.  It is something I had never heard of until I moved to Jersey; however, there are actually quite a few of them spread across the country near major cities.

The first thing that happens when you get there is they give you a crown of a certain color.  The color is the color of the section you will sit in and the color of the knight you need are supposed to root for.  My friends and I were in the green section, so we sported lovely green crowns.

Photo: City of Leon cheering the Green Knight to victory!
The demonic gleam in our eyes seems to suggest this might be a Medieval episode of Dr. Who.  I assure it was not.  We are all quite least I think so.

After we got our crowns, we went into the theater and the show began.  As we watched knights joust and sword fight, we feasted (without utensils) on tomato soup, garlic bread, chicken (delicious), and an apple pastry.  The food was amazing!  The entertainment was a tad comical and unbelievable, but still fun.

Then, yesterday, I got a million and a half errands done.  None of which I will bore you with, except one, which was very exciting.  That errand was...applying for my Indian visa!

I had my first training call for my trip to India and the assignment afterwards was to get all the paperwork, pictures, and documents together for our visas.  It took a bit of doing, but I think I did everything right and it's all set to go.  Sending everything off in the UPS made the whole thing really real to me.  I really am going to India this summer!  It's happening!

To prepare for the trip, I nervously said "yes" when my friends asked me to go out for Indian food today.  I have never had much Indian food and am actually quite intimidated by the spice factor, but I figured I might as well start to acclimate my stomach and my taste buds.  The dosa I had was pretty spicy, but actually really good.  I also enjoyed the samosa.  Perhaps I will survive the trip after all.  Hehe

Photo: Huge #dosa
Dosa or baseball bat?  That is the question.
Now enough about the excessive amount of food I ate this weekend.  On to the good, teachery stuff.

I am linking up with Collaboration Cuties for Must Read Mentor Texts.

The science book I'd like to highlight this week is Log Hotel.

I read this book during our current unit on organisms.  This story tells the story of a tree that falls down in the woods.  As it starts to decay, fungi starts to grow on it, plants weave their way in, and animals move in to make the log their home.  Eventually, the dead tree fully decays and a new tree begins to grow in the same spot.

This book is great because it shows how all types of living things depend on each other and how nature goes through cycles.  Also, the log is a perfect example of a habitat because it is a place where many plants and animals get what they need to live.

I love teaching about habitats.  Last year I found this great free Habitats PowerPoint made by Hayli for Wacona Elementary School?  I am not sure if this link will work, but I'm hoping it does so you can download it.  If not, just search Wacona Habitats and it should come up on Google.  I just found it by searching.  

Anyways, the PowerPoint goes over the basic features and characteristics of many different habitats.  I made a mini book to go along with it, so my kids could take notes and draw pictures.  Last year's kiddos LOVED this.  They got so into learning about the habitats.  This year, now that I have been introduced to the world of cute fonts, frames, and clipart, I jazzed the book up A LOT.  It took me quiet awhile, but I like how it turned out.  You can download it for FREE by clicking the picture below.  One note though, I adapted the PowerPoint a bit, so the mini book has some extra pages in it that aren't found in the PowerPoint.  Also, in case the PowerPoint doesn't work, I included a teacher's copy with some basic information filled in the blanks.  This is what I focus on with my kiddos, but the blanks allow for flexibility based on what information you teach your kiddos.

If you download this freebie, PLEASE let me know what you think.  I worked super hard on this book and would love to know what you think.  Even if you have ideas for how to make it better, please let me know.


Before you go, don't forget to enter my 100 Follower Giveaway going on now!  There are THREE different chances to win some awesome prizes.  

Also, my best bud Jessica from Joy in the Journey is having a fabulous 200 follower giveaway.  Be sure to stop by her blog to enter.

Last, but certainly not least, this weeks Tricks of the Trade Thursday Theme is:
So, Field Trips, how do you schedule them, organize them, manage them, etc. What types of activities do you do before, during, and/or after your trips?

Start thinking and be ready to link up on Thursday!


  1. A trip to India? How exciting! The food would scare me too. I'm not a spicy person. Hope you will be blogging from there! This book looks great. Thanks for sharing the freebie too!
    Beach Sand and Lesson Plans

  2. Did you eat an actual entree or just appetizers?

  3. That sounds like lots of fun. :) I've never heard of Medieval Times Dinner Theater. Fun!
    Brandee @ Creating Lifelong Learners

  4. I really liked your habitat book. It is very user friendly and I think the kids will enjoy making a book. Thanks for sharing!
    Love Teaching Kids

  5. I found you via Pinterest and am very pleased with the habitat book. It was just what I needed. Thank you for sharing the freebie! I cannot wait to check out the rest of your blog.

  6. Thank you so much for the work you put in on the habitat book. My kidos will love this.

  7. The habitat book is great. I don't know yet how many or which of the habitats I will teach my 2nd graders. I love that you have the answers to most of the habitats but it would be nice to have your answers to rainforest and pond too! Thanks