Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spring-is-on-its-Way Giveaway!

Years ago as a teacher in Alaska, my students and I enjoyed working together to identify the seasons: autumn, winter, spring and summer.

Autumn in Alaska is when the leaves on the trees change color and fall, the temperature takes a noticeable dip and stays there, and the scent in the woods is much less green and ever more cranberry-ish.  If it's a rainy year, it's muddy.  Autumn lasts about two weeks, so try not to blink or you'll miss it.

Winter is rather straightforward and long-lived.  It's snowy, cold, and dark.  Each morning as the hair in your nostrils frosts over, you catch the distinct smell of wood burning stoves.  You might hear the slow crunch of tracks being made by a moose in your backyard.  Block scheduling at school includes an extra ten minutes before the bell, before and after recess, and before dismissal for students to either take off and store all of their cold weather gear or to put it all on before stepping outside.  Daylight stays on the horizon for a very short period of time each day, so try not to blink or you'll miss it.  Winter can stretch from October to March.

Spring can begin in March, but sometimes holds off its solid start until April or even early May.  Despite the snow melting and warmer temps, people know not to bother washing their vehicles no matter how mud covered they might become.  Students alter their layers of clothing, swapping out snowpants for jeans or even shorts though it's still only twenty degrees above zero.  With the sun's return, everyone purchases sunglasses and watches where they walk or drive to avoid puddles, lakes, and potholes.  You won't be inclined to blink but you'll certainly be squinting as you await summer, noticing the buds on trees and the tiny spots of green popping up amongst the rotten slush-ice and debris that needs to be cleared away on an annual clean up day.  Summer is just around the corner.

When summer arrives, mosquitoes have hatched from every water source imaginable, and bare legs, arms, necks and faces wear more bug repellant than sunblock.  Students wear shorts and light shirts to school, teachers wear sandals and prep their homes for summer visitors, and many families give their green thumbs the go-ahead to dig in the dirt, plant seeds, or arrange glorious plant and flower varieties in hanging baskets, whiskey barrels, or tires left lining the driveway.  Green explodes overnight.  Aluminum foil covers many bedroom windows to block out the twenty-plus hours of sunlight.  Neighbors might mow their fast growing yards at nine or ten o'clock at night, and children are tan from all of the time spent outdoors.  If it's a rainy year, it's muddy.  The school year ends in May, just in time for everyone to soak up as much sunlight as possible before autumn returns after the solstice.

My Stars in Oz observe a more evenly distributed progression of the seasons.  Though school begins in August, it's still rather summer-ish in its warmth and appearance.  Fall begins in October, and winter can be finicky when deciding whether or not to provide students and teachers with snow days right before or immediately after winter vacation.  Spring is one of our favorite seasons because with the return of warmer weather comes flower blooms on many trees, worms crawling across sidewalks, and the promise of Easter egg hunts on freshly mown lawns.  Summer is hot, and can deliver a bounty of produce from the garden, along with mandating several hasty moves to tornado shelters and safe rooms.  

What observations do your students make as they track the change of seasons?  


To welcome the return of spring, Carson-Dellosa is celebrating Very Hungry Caterpillar Day with a giveaway!  Check out the prize pack below:


To enter, please leave a comment *on this post only* telling me which season is YOUR favorite.  Please remember that I must have a way to contact you if you are the winner, so either leave a link to your own blog or an email address with your comment.  I'll pick a winner on March 30!

Good luck!


  1. SUMMER! I love the heat! :) Thank you for the cute giveaway!
    tracystandage at gmail dot com

  2. Anonymous8:39 AM

    Fall is my favorite season. I like when the humid days of summer are left behind and the nights turn cooler. I like the smell of lanolin in homemade wool sweaters. I like the open fields of pumpkins waiting to be picked and the sound a fresh apple makes as one takes the first bite. Yes, there's no doubt, I like fall the best! 8~)

  3. SPRING is my favorite season. The days get longer, the sun seems to shine brighter and the birds return to spread their joy through song. It's great to be able to take students outside for varied learning opportunities provided by Mother Nature! Paulajoe1213@aol.com.

  4. My favorite season is summer because I love to sleep in and then have time to swim or float in the pool and read novels. Seasons here in Arizona are a little trickier so we talk about what seasons are like elsewhere, so in fall we talk about leaves changing color, even though a lot of them don't do so until winter. In winter we notice it gets colder and we talk about snow elsewhere. Now that it's Spring, the class is excited because spring means shorts, t-shirts, and swimming pools.

  5. I love Spring, although living in Alaska (Anchorage) it's not the same as when I was growing up in Washington.
    You described the seasons up here perfectly, right now our reading curriculum theme is "Spring Is Here", since it doesn't look like spring here, we are comparing spring in Alaska to spring in the lower 48.

    ✪ Miss W

    Miss W Teaches

  6. Fall...fall is my favorite season! I mean I love the snow and the beauty it brings, but the cool, crisp fall air and vibrant colors you see everywhere is simply amazing. I am a New England girl and the colors just make you feel happy. I love being able to sit on the porch with hot apple cider while watching the kids be kids and jump into piles of leaves! What is better than that?
    Kara Collins

  7. Oh my goodness...I absolutely LOVE spring! Even when the winter season is not so cold, I still look forward to waking in the morning and NOT having to put on a coat. LOVE IT!

    jennkeys @ gmail . com

  8. Anonymous6:52 PM

    I love winter. I love to wear hoodies and sweat pants and curl up on the couch with a blanket.

  9. Anonymous1:14 AM

    I love summer time,so I can leave AK and visit family outside! L.Lewis@acsalaska.net

  10. Fall! I love back to school and sunny days with cool nights!

  11. Spring! I love that everything is in bloom!

  12. I love the sun rising in the desert in the spring and summer! It gives way to a quiet that keeps me calm and refreshed. I love the sun rising in the desert in autumn and winter! It gives way to crisp breath on the cold morning that keeps me exhilarated and awake. So I guess I love all the seasons in the morning! which gives way to loving the calm spring mornings the best! http://csplace-clc.blogspot.com

  13. Interesting read Michaele. I have always found Autumn to be my favorite season, as we can leave the heat and humidity of summer behind and enjoy fresh air activity like hiking and leaf peeping. But this Spring has been wonderful. There are more interesting options for instruction and the students are seasoned learners now as well.

  14. When I first moved to NC from FL, Fall was my favorite season. Now that I have five little children, four whom are seven and under, I'd have to say that Spring is my favorite time of year. There is so much to explore with them outdoors and so much beautiful colors to see.

    Thank you for this opportunity!
    raisinglittlesaints {at} gmail.com

  15. My first instinct was to say spring...since everyone's (especially the children) mood lifts and everyone just seems happier. But--then I realized that I truly love summer. Not just the break from school--but the chance to recharge, relax and be with my family. I'm so excited to spend this first "real" summer with our 1yo.

  16. Anonymous6:15 PM

    My favorite season seems to be whatever season it is! I love the sweaters in the winter, the rain showers in the spring, the lake in the summer, and the beautiful leaves in the fall!
    breena_44@yahoo.com :)

  17. Anonymous7:05 AM

    I love fall! Start of a new year, new pencils, crayons, etc. I love the warm days and cool nights. And of course the start of a new football season!

  18. Oh summer is fabulous! I love being able to sit on my deck and enjoy the smell of fresh cut grass!



As always, thank you for your comments, tips, suggestions and questions!