President's Day

To date there have been 45 men who have served as President of the United States. Today is a day to remember and honor them.

There are many books about our past Presidents from which you can gain a great understanding of how they grew into the leaders they became. My favorite series for this by far is the “Who WAS” series .

Back in 2010, For Washington’s birthday I gave the bugs an assignment… Write about what you would do if you were president of the USA, and then paint me a picture of yourself as president… here is what they came up with:

If I were President I would…

9 year old Lauren’s Essay: If I were President I would give the jobs money to give the people for payment. If I were President that is what I would do.

8 year old Megan’s Essay: If I were president I would lower prices and I would give food to the poor and I would like to make toys un – breakable. If I were president that’s what I would do.

6, almost 7 year old Douglas’ Essay: If I were President of the United States I would give people jobs… the front of his picture says: I am the President at my desk. I am saying, “How are you doing today?”. I let the little kid in my desk. The Daddy is looking at the jobs. TOOOOO CUTE!!!!!


As adults we potentially deal with Presidents on a daily basis (even if we avoid the news)… how? Because our presidents are on Money!

Did you know that there have been no revisions to the Presidents depicted on currency since 1928? Unfortunately the department of treasury can not determine with any accuracy why certain Presidents and statesmen were chosen for their specific denominations.

The only modifications to currency began in 1996 to improve security against counterfeiting.

You can learn all kinds of Fun Facts about the presidents (and other leaders) on paper money in my slide presentation and guided note activity pack.

Click on image to visit my Teachers Pay Teachers store!

My President’s Day gift to you is this activity:

Be sure to sign up for our newsletter, follow our blog and come back again for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Please note that I am an Amazon Affiliate and as such the links I post are affiliate links.

For my full DISCLOSURE go HERE.

Groundhog Day – February 2

Groundhog day’s largest celebration is held each year in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, where Punxsutawney Phil is awakened from his wintery slumber to let the crowd of thousands know to expect an early spring, or 6 more weeks of winter! It also happens to be Mrs. Crabtree’s Birthday! Here she is checking for HER shadow! She likes to be called: California Christy!

No shadow this year for California Christy!

This unique tradition in weather folklore is tied to the Christian holiday of Candlemas brought to the Americas by the Dutch. It was a tradition on Candlemas day for priests to bless candles and distribute them to parishioners on February 2 (the middle of winter).

Candlemas takes place between the winter solstice and spring equinox, therefore it is traditionally thought to be the “middle of winter”. It is also celebrated as the day in the Catholid Church as the day Jesus was presented in the temple in Jerusalem. When Simon held the baby Jesus, it is said he proclaimed Jesus would be a light for the world, and therefore, February 2nd (40 days after Christmas) was named Candlemas.

There is no clear historical path to the actual beginnings of Candlemas and which came first Jesus as the light or the blessed candles as the light.

The tie into what we now celebrate as Groundhog day comes from the way Farmers see this day.

In Germany a badger or hedgehog was used to see if he saw his shadow. When early Pennsylvania settlers came to America, they replaced the hedgehog with a groundhog.

There are several versions of this song:

“If Candlemas be fair and bright,

Come, Winter, have another flight.

If Candlemas brings clouds and rain,

Go, Winter, and come not again.”

I put this saying up on my letterboard as part of my end of January decorations.

Happy Hive Homeschool letter board on our entry table

It makes a great COPYWORK activity, and happens to be included in the Homeschool Holiday Groundhog Day Predictions Slide presentation and Activity packet.

When the Groundhog comes out sand see’s his shadow – he is presumably scared, and retreats back into his burrow for 6 more weeks of winter. (“If Candlemas be fair and bright, Come, Winter, have another flight. ) No shadow, means he stays out and therefore the prediction of an early spring. (If Candlemas brings clouds and rain, Go, Winter, and come not again.”)

The activity Packet also contains these great posters with clip art from Teacher’s Pay Teachers Seller:

Poster Sample from Activity Packet.

The first Groundhog day celebration in Pennsylvania was held on February 2, 1886. According to The Punxsutawney Spirit newspaper: “Today is groundhog day and up to the time of going to press the beast has not seen its shadow.” The groundhog was named: “Punxsutawney Phil, Seer of Seers, Sage of Sages, Prognosticator of Prognosticators, and Weather Prophet Extraordinary”. Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania is known as the “Weather Capital of the World.” The first prediction called for an early spring as Phil did not see his shadow!

The now legendary first trip to Gobbler’s Knob was made in 1887, just the following year.

How much do you know about Punxutawney Phil? Use the slide presentation portion of the activity pack to play Fact or Fiction and see!

Some other fun things you can do to celebrate the day are: 

Trace your shadow with chalk

Standing in the sun to have my shadow traced.

Bake Groundhog cupcakes / Brownies. Here are 2 sample versions that are easy to copy. The first version I did with my kids. We used Brownies because they are my favorite and are more dense than cupcake batter. They hold the wafer cookie better.

Use icing and a toothpick to draw the face. Depending on the ages of your learners, faces will vary! We used sliced almonds “glued” on with more chocolate icing!

Here is our completed tray.

The second version were created FOR me as a gift. They were assembled by an adult – but could totally be kid created as well. The cupcakes were baked first, then the candy was assembled after they had completely cooled. 

Cupcake and Candy created Groundhog Day YUMMIES!

However you decide to celebrate – may your day be filled with fun. 

 Come back again for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Please note that I am an Amazon Affiliate and as such the links I post are affiliate links.

For my full DISCLOSURE go HERE.

Sources: 

https://www.stormfax.com/ghogday.htm

https://www.timeanddate.com/holidays/common/candlemas

https://www.pennlive.com/life-and-culture/g66l-2019/01/b4ee9d534c8391/groundhog-day-2019-guide-punxsutawney-phil-facts-tips-for-going-to-gobblers-knob-and-more.html

G.I. Joe Day – February 1st

Barbie remains possibly the best known doll of all time. But what about toys for boys? – yes back in the day toys were designed with a particular market in mind. In 1964 Hasbro, in an effort to compete with Matel’s Barbie came up with GI JOE. The soldier was introduced as an “action figure”, not a doll.

Collectors today design elaborate dioramas to display custom GI Joe and other similar action figures.

Government Issue Joe was a huge success! The name came from the 1945 film: The Story of G.I. JOE. (you might find it on youtube with a search 🙂

The action figure carries a patent for its 21 point articulation. It is also copyrighted because of the scar across Joe’s right cheek. This unique mark is what allows the action figure to be copyrighted, otherwise the human likeness isn’t eligible for copyright.

How to Celebrate:

Write letters to soldiers – Check out Operation Gratitude . com

Design your own ACTION FIGURE ( 3d printer) or repurpose an old action figure from yard sale.

Check out my Teachers Pay Teachers store for another paper- action figure activity.

Build your own action figure activity available in my Teachers Pay Teachers Shop.

Come back again for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Please note that I am an Amazon Affiliate and as such the links I post are affiliate links.

Sources:

https://www.holidaysmart.com/holidays/daily/gi-joe-day

https://www.neatorama.com/2010/04/30/10neat-facts-about-g-i-joe/

Squirrel Appreciation Day

Happy Squirrel Appreciation Day!!

Have you ever seen a flying squirrel? What about a squirrel touching up her lipstick?

I have the pleasure of belonging to a group of women who scrapbook and our mascot is the squirrel. We have had many “squirrely” adventures! So indeed I have seen a squirrel stop, pull over and touch up her lipstick.

Photo courtesy Laura Morlok, one of my Scrappy Sisters!

Today we are going to focus a bit more on the 3 types of squirrels you may encounter in nature: the flying squirrel, the tree squirrel and the ground squirrel.

The flying squirrel doesn’t really fly… remember the scene in Toy Story – where Buzz Lightyear is “falling, with style” – that’s exactly what a flying squirrel does… They glide through the air after launching off a tree branch. Fascinating for sure. Check out this great video by National Geographic Wild: World’s Weirdest- Flying Squirrel

Tree squirrels, as their name implies live in trees. Some of the most recognized of the tree squirrels are the grey, red and fox squirrel. They may bury food in the ground so tgey have it for later.

Ground squirrels can sometimes be mistaken for gophers due to their burrowing underground. They eat nuts, seeds and plants. They even eat small insects.

Did you know chipmunks and marmots are also in the squirrel family? There are so many cool squirrel facts I compiled a list of my favorites and created a copywork activity pack. Here is a sample you can use. The full version is available in my TPT store for only $1.25. It comes with 9 facts in print and cursive.

I can not resist sharing this youtube video…. If you can not get out of the house to go squirrel watching today – have no fear. This Mom and her babies will keep you entertained for quite some time. Squirrel Clown Car

One of my favorite websites as a classroom teacher was SCI Show Kids. It’s geared at kids TK – grade 3, but my 4th graders loved it, and I dare say – kids are kids. The information is great. They have a video called: Why do Squirrels dig? I have created a FREE companion worksheet to go along with the video.

Watch the video and use this FREE companion worksheet! (answer key not included, but you can get it in my Squirrel Appreciation Day activity Pack!)

Some other great activities you can do: 

String Fruit Ring Cereal on yarn and hang it outside 

TP Tube and squirrel food with peanut butter

Do you have a park that has lots of squirrels? Why not load an empty egg carton with different food samples (nuts, fruit, etc) … set it under a Tree and watch what happens! 

Make a felt puppet or stuffed animal. The complete instructions, pattern and other great Squirrel Appreciation Day activities are available in my TeachersPayTeachers Shop. 

If you are looking for a GREAT BOOK to compliment nature studies, begin nature studies or just as a stand alone book about squirrels – I highly recommend this one:

The Series of animal stories by Thorton Burgess is a MUST HAVE for every household! You can get many of them for FREE as Kindle editions.

I hope your appreciation of Squirrels has increased!

Come back again for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Please note that I am an Amazon Affiliate and as such the links I post are affiliate links.

For my full DISCLOSURE go HERE.

Sources:

Sources: https://nationaldaycalendar.com/squirrel-appreciation-day-january-21/

https://www.whatdosquirrelseat.org/where-do-flying-squirrels-live/

Kid inventors day

Happy Kid Inventors Day — also called K.I.D. January 17th is a special day. It is the birthday of Benjamin Franklin who invented the first swim flippers at age 12! Mr. Franklin went on to invent many more things (perhaps you can research what they were) as well as become an important statesman in American history. Here is a FREE organizer you can use for this research:

Research Organizer Worksheet for Kid Inventors Day

Kids have brilliant minds, and today is a day to celebrate that. There are no limits on inventions. I bet you have a great idea. I know I would love an automatic laundry folder!

Rube Goldberg was an inventor and a cartoonist. He is famous for drawing cartoons that contained inventions that solved simple problems in the most over complicated – outrageous ways. The main character of these cartoons was named Professor Butts. Today we call these inventions Rube Goldberg Machines. Mr. Goldberg drew over 50,000 cartoons over his life. Around the globe contests are held for the best “Rube Goldberg” Machines!

Take some time to check out his Zany Cartoons in the Rube Goldberg Gallery https://www.rubegoldberg.com/image-gallery-licensing/

Perhaps you will be inspired to create your own Rube Goldberg Machine. If it does fold laundry, will you let me know?

When you do have a true and unique invention, designed to solve a problem, many inventors – even kids seek what is called a PATENT. This protects the invention from being produced by another inventor for a period of 20 years. Even kids can be granted patents!

Visit the United States Patent & Trademark Website. They have an awesome section just for kids and teens.

https://www.uspto.gov/kids/kids.html

Learn about the process and meet other Kid inventors like you!

Amazon has books on inventors, some are just about inventors in general and some are biographies. This is a fun one that covers all interest levels:

Brainstorm is filled with 20 stories of only KID inventors!

Today is a day for creating, even if it’s just THINKING about your invention because we don’t always have the exact supplies laying around the house for an automatic laundry folding machine… Begin by becoming inspired by other KID inventors, then brainstorm your own awesome invention. Use this great resource as a way to organize your thoughts.

If you would like to research 10 different Kid Inventors quickly and easily I put together this great resource for you! It uses QR codes you simply scan and read about or watch a short video about how these real kids solved real problems!

Then you can organize your research and determine how these inventions have impacted your life on a handy graphic organizer!

Head over to my TeachersPayTeachers store to check it out!

Way back in 2010 we celebrated Kid inventors day in a completely spontaneous way, check out that blog post: KID INVENTORS DAY 2010

I hope you are inspired to invent something on your own. (even like my kids – it had already been invented!) Come back again for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Please note that I am an Amazon Affiliate and as such the links I post are affiliate links.

For my full DISCLOSURE go HERE.

Sources:

http://www.kidinventorsday.com/

Rube Goldberg Machine Contest®, Rube Goldberg Machine® and Rube Goldberg Challenge® are all trademarks of RGI. Reference is used for educational purpose only. – not for profit

Ben Franklin Clip art courtesy TPT seller HendersonsHeadquarters.

Dress up your pet day

Pets play an important role in our homes and our lives. Don’t worry if you don’t have a pet – you can still participate in Dress up your pet day! But before you begin – make sure you have permission to dress your pet, and PLEASE make sure your pet is a willing participant.

Pet stores have plenty of clothes, but you can be creative with making a cape, using doll clothes and even baby clothes if your pet is small enough.

If you do dress your pet, be sure to take a photo and share it with us here at HomeschoolHoliday.com.


If you don’t have a pet, or can’t use your pet to celebrate this day, there are some easy alternatives.

One great way is to use a favorite stuffed animal.

Megan’s Duck dressed as a snow queen using Doll Clothes.

Even homemade costumes for a favorite stuffed animal count for Dress Up Your Pet day!

Lauren’s Cow is dressing up as a Vampire. We used an old pillow case for his smock and a trash bag for his cape. His fangs are paper.

You can also print and color our FREE Dress up your Pet coloring pages. Color these animal pages anyway you want then add hats, glasses and other fun items by coloring them or by cutting them from magazines and gluing them to the coloring pages.

There are 16 different coloring pages in this awesome FREEBIE!

For even more fun you can visit our TeachersPayTeachers store and purchase the Dress your Pet paper Dolls. This affordable activity comes with the FREE coloring pages as well as a set of 10 different color your own Pet paper dolls, ( DOG, CAT, HAMSTER, GUINEA PIG, MOUSE, TURTLE, BUNNY, FISH, SNAKE, & BIRD) and 2 color (Cat and Dog) pet paper dolls for your learner to be creative with.

Remember to come back here and post your silly pet pictures, using your pets, stuffed animals, coloring pages or paper dolls. Today is a day to celebrate that special bond we have with our faithful friends.

Penny Pie dressed and ready for her walk. She is a Party Animal!

I hope you have fun dressing your pet, live or paper! Come back again for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Please note that I am an Amazon Affiliate and as such the links I post are affiliate links.

For my full DISCLOSURE go HERE.

January 11 – write your name in Morse Code

The first text messaging system was perhaps the Telegraph! The telegraph used what we now call Morse Code to communicate “instantly” over really long distances for the first time in human history.

Before that news took days, weeks and even months to be delivered by newspapers. With the telegraph, a message could be sent across the Atlantic ocean in minutes!

Morse code is named for Samuel F. B. Morse. He was not the first to think of, or invent the telegraph, but he was the first to get political support for his idea.

The International Morse Code uses the 26 English letters A – Z (it also uses some non english letters). The 10 digits 0-9 (called the Arabic numerals) and a small set of punctuation and signals needed for procedures.

When sending/receiving Morse code there are no capital letters. The letters are formed by “dots and dashes”. The dot is the basic signal and used to measure how long a signal lasts. A dash is 3 times as long as a dot. This is how the person sending (and receiving) can tell the difference. – Remember, many times – we are LOOKING at the dots and dashes when we use Morse code for activities today.

They were LISTENING! Here is a video that plays the audio for each letter of the alphabet. (I have no affiliation with this video. Please preview the video before showing to your learners I use an ad blocking extension for Chrome called Adblock. )

After each letter there is a quiet space equal to the length of a dot, then the signals for the next letter begins. At the end of the word, the space silence is equal to the length of seven dots.

The dashes and dots were designed based on frequency of use. For example, the most used letter in the English language is the letter E, it is only one dot.

So today your challenge is to write your name in Morse Code.

I found an online site that you can input text and it will play it back in Morse Code. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND doing this activity together as it is laced with ads, download buttons and other tricky areas. There were no inappropriate ads, however I would hate for a young one to click the wrong thing.

https://www.mobilefish.com/services/morse_code/morse_code.php

You can also use my FREE Morse Code printable and use the printed version of Morse code to write your name.

If you are interested in learning more check out these books and activities available on Amazon.

Text the old fashioned way with this pair of handheld Morse code flashers. Two people can signal back and forth. Includes two conversion charts to learn Morse code and the Alfa, Bravo, Charlie alphabet used around the world.
This book for both kids and adults, contains fun illustrations and pictorial representation to assist in memorization of the Morse Code. The illustrations help to keep a mental projection of each code and its related alphabet. Illustrations for Alphabets A to Z and Numbers 1 to 0. are included.
This book is written graphic-novel style and follows the amazing life of Samuel Morse, who developed a working telegraph in 1844 and changed the way people communicated.
Have a learner that is REALLY into Morse code? This notebook is just the thing! It includes the Morse code, practice exercises and special paper to write your own sentences in Morse code. Makes a unique gift!

Finally this basic kit can be used to produce a light that flashes your Morse Code signals! Great for a basic lesson in circuits too!

I hope you enjoyed learning your name in Morse code. Come back again for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Please note that I am an Amazon Affiliate and as such the links I post are affiliate links.

For my full DISCLOSURE go HERE.



Sources:

http://www.elon.edu/e-web/predictions/150/1830.xhtml

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morse_code

https://www.checkiday.com/

3 Kings Day – January 6

For many of us, the holiday season ends with what Christians call Epiphany, or 3 Kings Day. Today is the day we remember the journey of the Magi (the plural form of magus- a member of a priestly hierarchy of ancient Persia). It is also the 12th day of Christmas. In the gospel of Matthew, the Wise Men (also called the 3 Kings, however they were not actual kings in the way we define kings today) follow the brightest star to find the baby Jesus after his birth. Melchior, Caspar,and Balthazar bring Jesus gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh.

NOTE: The popular Christmas Carol, The 12 days of Christmas is not related to THIS 12th day of Christmas, three Kings Day. But is in line for its own future post and curriculum!

Today you can learn about the 3 kings with books and activities:

Make crowns with this easy to use TEMPLATE:

Crown pattern you can use to make your own 3 kings day crown.

(Print onto colored cardstock if desired. Cut along the “mountain peaks” and staple or tape together to fit the circumference of your learner’s head. Decorate with paint, stickers, self adhesive gems, feathers, craft poms, etc.)

Frankincense and Myrrh are essential oils available today. Do you have them, or know someone who does ? Let your learner smell and feel them. Learn about these oils and their uses today. See why they were considered great gifts! My links are for informational purposes only, These This products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Information on Frankincense

Information on Myrrh Oil from DoTerra

Gold was the third gift brought by the Wise Men. Gold has always been a valuable item. Today we use it for jewelry and it is considered the best filling when you have a cavity!

These gifts were symbolic gifts. The gold was given because Jesus was believed to be the King of the Jews. Frankincense was for His divine nature. Lastly, Myrrh was a perfume used to embalm dead bodies. This gift foretold Jesus’ eventual suffering and death.

In some countries children leave their shoes by the door so the 3 Kings can leave them a gift. (What a wonderful tradition! If you don’t already do this, consider beginning)

If you are looking for a more detailed activity perhaps you would like my 3 Kings Mobile available in my TeachersPayTeachers Store.

Click Image to Visit TPT and purchase.

The mobile comes in an easy to use color set you can print and assemble as well as a black and white version for you to print and color yourself. You can also use the black and white file as a template and trace the patterns onto patterned scrapbook paper. (I mean your learner – I have to admit I’m totally into this activity myself!)

Custom 3 Kings Day wall hanging created with Black and White template and scrapbook paper.

Here is a short video showing one strand of the Mobile hanging outside. This lets you see the double sided nature of the print and cut version.

Another cultural 3 Kings day tradition is Three Kings Day Bread. It is called: Rosca de reyes or Ring of the Kings. A figurine of the baby Jesus is sometimes hidden in the bread to represent the flight of the Holy Family. Whoever finds the baby Jesus figurine is blessed and must take the figurine to the nearest church on February 2 (Candlemas Day)

Visit your local bakery for your own Ring of Kings or improvise by making cupcakes and hiding a baby inside one.

Which cupcake has the baby?

I hope to see you next time for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Please note that I am an Amazon Affiliate and as such the links I post are affiliate links.

For my full DISCLOSURE go HERE.

Sources: https://www.newsweek.com/when-three-kings-day-and-how-it-celebrated-epiphany-772690

https://www.checkiday.com/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosca_de_reyes

January 4 – Spaghetti Day

I have a feeling I know what’s for dinner tonight! Spaghetti! Why? Because today is National Spaghetti day!

This long, thin pasta is made of milled wheat and water. Some theories state explorer Marco Polo brought Spaghetti from China but it is most likely that pasta was created in Sicily much before Marco Polo’s time!

The name Spaghetti comes from the Italian word spago which means thin string or twine.

If you would like to read some books about Spaghetti Day here are my recommendations:

This is a “Math” book that gets kids thinking about area and perimeter.

This fun “I can Read” level 2 reader is about eating too much spaghetti!

You can try to make your own spaghetti – there are plenty of recipes online.

You can also create some fun art with Spaghetti by gluing it to paper in abstract ways. If you are really ambitious, you can color the spaghetti first.

It’s easy – I recommend reading through the directions first before beginning so you are familiar with the process, but anyone can dye pasta !

Here is what you need:

2 gallon freezer bags (one for each color you want to make)

Dry spaghetti (works with other pasta too!)

Food color drops like these:

Rubbing alcohol

Measuring Teaspoon

Parchment paper (or equivalent)

Cookie sheets for drying spaghetti

  1. Put the dry spaghetti into a large zip top bag. I use the 2 gallon size but they can be hard to find. Gallon size does work. Use a separate bag for each color you want to make.
  2. Add one teaspoon of rubbing alcohol to your first bag and zip the top closed securely. Rub the spaghetti (or other pasta if doing so another day) and the rubbing alcohol around in the bag to evenly distribute the alcohol. This should take about 1-2 minutes. It’s fun for kids to do, being careful not to break too much 🙂
  3. Repeat for each bag of spaghetti/pasta you have.
  4. Now go back to your first bag and add 10-20 drops of food coloring depending on how vivid you want the colors. Seal the bag nice and tight and roll the bag around to evenly distribute the color. Remember, this is fun, creative and ART – it does not have to be perfect.
  5. Repeat for each bag/color you want. If you would like to get scientific you can do a little bit of color mixing and add drops from different bottles and see what happens….
  6. Let your spaghetti sit in the color bags for about 15 minutes.
  7. Remove the spaghetti from the bags and let it air dry. Overnight is best but if you spread it out flat* it will dry faster.

Now you are ready to create!

*NOTE: The spaghetti/pasta is still wet and as such can get food coloring on your hands when you transfer it to the cookie sheets for drying. You may want to wear disposable gloves, or just go for it. I did not include these in the list of needed items.

I hope Spaghetti Day is delicious fun for you and your learners!

I hope to see you next time for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Please note that I am an Amazon Affiliate and as such the links I post are affiliate links.

For my full DISCLOSURE go HERE.

Fruitcake Toss Day – January 3

Perhaps the “holiday” aspect of fruitcake toss day was invented because so many people do not like fruitcake. Did you have the opportunity to make or buy fruitcake last week on FRUITCAKE DAY? You need that fruitcake for today so you can toss it !!!

That’s the whole point behind Fruitcake Toss Day – to throw your fruitcake.

One of the largest fruitcake tossing events is held each year in Manitou Springs Colorado. If you can’t attend their celebration, or one in your area, why not host one of your own with your family, class or co-op?

There are some great activities you can do to make your toss an exciting event.

I would suggest if holding an event, you can have a tasting station. It’s fun to see people react to their first taste of fruit cake. You may want to have some milk on hand to wash down the fruitcake taste.

You can also have a catapult building station. Participants load a bit of fruitcake in their homemade catapult and see who can launch it farthest. Be sure to use equal size pieces (if you want to be very scientific, use a food scale).

You can even use a slingshot if you have one or want to make one of those.

See if you can hit a TARGET. Glue the printable i created for you FREE to a box and place it on a table for the competition. To avoid the target getting ruined quickly you can place it in a page protector. Otherwise, just print several copies to have on hand.

Download this free printable for your Fruitcake Toss day activities… or visit my TPT Store for all December 27 and January 3rd files TOGETHER!

Another great activity is the “traditional” distance throw. Simply cut a chunk of fruitcake, and see how far it goes.

Our family did the distance throw. We laid out a measuring tape along the front lawn as a reference for each toss. The “Bugs” had to see where their piece landed and record it on their data collection sheet.

Lauren launches her fruitcake first. I used the computer to circle it on the picture so it can be seen “flying” through the air.
Megan, ever observant, used what she saw happen with Lauren’s fruitcake to her advantage and tossed next.
Douglas may be small, but his toss was mighty!
This was our Fruitcake Toss 2010

There is plenty of math in this holiday!

After you throw your piece:

*convert the number of feet into inches (1 foot = 12 inches).

*Graph the distance the fruitcake is tossed for each family member (Use this handy PRINTABLE) … or visit my TPT Store for all December 27 and January 3rd files TOGETHER!

all printables available in my TPT Store for December 27 and January 3rd TOGETHER!

*Throw the pieces several times and calculate the average distance.

(Math refresher if you need it: the average is found by adding up the numbers from each toss and dividing by the number of times you tossed. For example, Toss 1 = 24 inches , Toss 2 = 55 inches , Toss 3 = 17 inches , Toss 4 = 87 inches and Toss 5 = 10 inches . Now find the sum of the numbers: 24 + 55 + 17 + 87 + 10 = 193. The fruitcake was thrown 5 times, so divide by 5 and the average is 38.6 inches. )

Who threw the farthest?

Who threw without breaking their piece?

Best 2 out of 3?

Let younger learners use a calculator – that is a very important skill and not at all cheating!

Whatever you decide don’t forget to recognize your participants. I created these great AWARDS for you to use. The packet includes: Fruitcake Tossing Champ, Best Average Distance, Throwing Fruitcake the Farthest, Hitting fruitcake Target, and a blank for your creative idea.

Sample Fruitcake Toss Day Award – FREE to download … or visit my TPT Store for all December 27 and January 3rd files TOGETHER!

If you are interested in ALL my fruitcake downloads in one handy spot, please visit my TeachersPayTeachers Store where for $1.50 you can get BOTH December 27th AND January 3rd printables in one convenient file!

I hope you’ll join us next time for another fun holiday.

I hope Fruitcake Toss Day is filled with FUN for you and your learners!

I hope to see you next time for another fun Homeschool Holiday to explore- because there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

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