The Mitten by Jan Brett
What would winter be without warm, cozy mittens? In her distinct style, renowned children's author Jan Brett has created a wonderful winter story about a lost mitten and the woodland creatures who find it called, The Mitten - a book which Teachers.net lesson plan contributor Janet Lowe thinks makes the basis of a great winter lesson for your preschoolers and kindergartners.
Language & Literature
Begin by reading the story to your students. Invite them to listen carefully, taking note of each of the woodland creatures who finds (and wiggles into!) Nikki's lost mitten. At the story's conclusion, test your students' listening skills by completing a sequencing activity where students are provided with mitten and animal cutouts then asked to place the creatures inside the mitten in the correct order. Jan Brett offers delightful printables for this activity on her website that you can print and distribute or you could have students draw their own.
You might also consider using Brett's printables to create flash cards (like the ones shown at the right) where students can trace the animal names for letter and pre-writing practice as well as use the cards for ordering practice (alphabetical) and even memory/matching games! The possibilities are endless!
Practice with Adjectives
Lowe also suggests providing students with a mitten cutout to decorate with craft supplies from around the classroom (i.e. yarn, pom pons, etc.) with the phrase "My mitten is ____________." at the bottom, inviting students to brainstorm describing words. Once again, you can use one of Brett's printables and word processing software to create and print a project worksheet onto sturdy card stock (that will stand up to the demands of decorating!). Below is an example of a worksheet adapted using Jan Brett's artwork:
To reinforce the concept of sequencing, it might also be fun to have your students take turns dressing up as the characters in the book - Nikki and all the animals - and act out the story while it's being read. This offers a great creative outlet for your preschoolers while helping them to remember the story and practice sequencing!