February 2nd is Groundhog Day!

Today is the traditional Groundhog Day that arrives every year on February 2nd. It began as a European tradition that was brought to the United States in the 1880’s. It has been celebrated every year since then! How is the weather in your area today? It is sunny or cloudy? Will spring come early or late? Now, let’s do some Monday Magic Math with a calendar. Whether we have six more weeks of winter or six more weeks until spring, what month of the year and what day of the week is spring predicted to arrive?

12359728519_763ca15a4c_zIn Oak Meadow’s second grade course book, science lesson 13 (with the focus on animal characteristics) suggests making a card game to teach children about familiar animals. On one side of the card, the student writes a question about a particular animal’s character qualities. The name of the animal is written and illustrated on the other side of the card. Since the groundhog is not included in the science lesson’s list of animals, you could add a new card for the groundhog with questions, such as: What animal is also known as the land-beaver, marmot, whistle-pig or woodchuck? or What mammal hibernates in the winter and is famously known as the prognosticator or weather forecaster? 

1Groundhog-Predicts-Six-More-Weeks-of-Winter-it-Shall-BeTo learn more about the history of this furry rodent, CBS news offers a wealth of information in the article, Groundhog Day Tradition Casts a Shadow Back to Medieval Europe. It includes a “Groundhog Day Expert” quiz and a “Fun Facts Interactive”. Canadians also celebrate Groundhog Day with their special furry friend, named Wiarton Willie. I discovered a delightful National Geographic Kids production video on Kids Love Groundhog Day that you and your family might enjoy.

Happy Groundhog Day!

1groundhog-day-hd-wallpapers-movies-1869213501

St. Patrick’s Day – Crack the Code!

st-patricks-day

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Every year, on March 17th, thousands of people don their greenest garb, search for four-leaf clovers, eat corn beef and cabbage, dance the Irish jig, march in parades, and search for the leprechaun. Whether you are Irish or not, it can be a joyful occasion for the young and the old.

st-patricks-dayThere are many famous Irish sayings and blessings that come to mind. One of my favorites Irish blessings is:

“May you always walk in sunshine.

May you never want for more.

May Irish angels rest their wings right beside your door.”

 

As a child, my favorite part of this celebration was wearing a bit of green (so I wouldn’t get pinched). I also delighted in imagining how a leprechaun might appear.luck-o-the-irish-st-patricks-day-wallpapers-1024x768

Here’s a leprechaun’s message for you!

Use some letter and number magic to crack the code and figure out the message below.

CODE: 1 = A, 2 = B, 3 = C, etc.

__  __  __       __  __  __       __  __  __  __       __  __

13   1   25       20   8    5        12  21   3   11        2    5

__  __  __  __       __  __  __ !

23   9   20   8        25  15  21

__  __ __       __  __  __       __ __ __ __       __

13   1  25       25  15  21        6   9  14  4         1

__  __  __       __  __       __  __  __  __

16  15  20       15   6         7   15  12   4

__ __       __  __  __       __  __  __       __  __

 1  20       20   8   5          5   14   4        15   6

 __  __  __  __  __        __  __  __  __  __  __  __ !

 5  22   5   18   25         18   1    9   14   2   15  23

 

st-patrick-1024x819