Circle Time: The Story
The story, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, will be read a few times in today’s lesson. As the initial reading introduces the story, repetition will only increase its familiarity. By the end of the day, the children will know the entire book by heart. Some may even want to “read” it to others. This is an excellent way to encourage literacy. I have used this lesson, but there are many ideas from other sources, that could be adapted.
Together, the children will make the coconut tree that will be displayed on the bulletin board. The teacher will prepare a large tree trunk, made from brown paper, as the children trace and cut out their hand prints on green construction paper for the “leaves”. This display will be the focus of other activities throughout the day.
Continue the art activity by giving each child a sheet of white construction paper to create a collage. Instruct them to draw a coconut tree and leaves. As you give each a magazine, they will search and cut out letters spelling their name. They will then glue the letters on the coconut tree.
Pre-cut and laminate 3" x 5" strips of construction paper. With a permanent marker, write letters the children have been learning and tape them on the tree. These may be erased with acetone for future use. This may be adapted for older children by writing “high frequency words” on the strips. Tape the strips on the bulletin board “coconut tree”.
Show the children what a real coconut looks like. Let them touch and shake it, as you tell them about the coconut milk inside. You may also pour the milk, from another coconut previously prepared for pouring, as it is difficult to break through.
Extend the learning by showing on the map, some tropical islands where coconut trees grow.
As the class sits in a circle, read the book Chicka Chicka Boom Boom once again. This time, be prepared to throw large plastic letters in the center of the circle, at end of the story. As the children “snap, clap” to a rhythm, teach this chant, “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, flip, flop, flee. What letter fell from the coconut tree?” As everyone says it with you, toss the letters and let a child pick up a letter from the pile, say its name, its sound, whether it is a vowel or a consonant and then say a word that begins with the letter. Continue going around the circle until everyone has had a turn.