Sunday, April 8, 2012

Some EGGcellent Ideas!

I know!  A horrible pun of a title!  I just couldn't resist. :-D

Easter has come and gone.  Well, almost.  I'm writing this post on Easter Sunday night after a day full of family, food, and laughter. And, too many jelly beans!  As I sit on my couch tonight, I'm loving that my kitchen is clean since we went out for Easter brunch.  This was my view from our table.  I was sitting right next to the window.
This picture is straight out of the camera, no zoom, no photo shop.  Just a glorious day at the shore.  Don't let Snookie fool you.  This is what the real Jersey shore looks like before the summer rush hits. 

But, now that Easter is (almost) over, I was thinking about all those plastic eggs that are going to be on sale tomorrow.

There's nothing I love more than a good sale, so I got to thinking of what we can do with them.  I teach in a public school, so I can't do anything religion related.  But, I know there had to be some use for these fun, colorful eggs.  I had a few ideas, but decided to peruse the blog land to see what ideas were out there.  There are plenty!

First, here are some ideas I had off the top of my head:

Rewards:  Fill each egg with a slip of paper that gives the student or class some sort of reward.  When they earn a reward, they pick an egg from a bowl and get that reward.  You could also just hand them out to specific students for "eggcellent" behavior or citizenship.
Prefix Practice Match-Up:  Write a bunch of different prefixes on the left half of an egg with the rest of the word on the other half.  Put them all in a baggie, unmatched, and have your friends put them together until they all match.  I think the trick here is that some may be interchangeable, but they will probably have to switch them around until ALL the eggs are matched correctly.  You could do the same with suffixes, just writing the suffix on the right egg half.
Word Families:  The egg halves spin, so it's great for practicing word families. Write a variety of letters around the left half of the egg and the word family on the other half.  Then, they can spin the egg halves creating a new word with each turn.  For example, you can put m, h, p, c, etc going around the left half of the egg.  Then, write "at" on the other half of the egg.  As they spin the egg halves, they will create the words mat, hat, pat, and cat.  I searched for a picture of this, and obviously my idea is not a new one!  This picture is from a blog post in 2009!

Math Match:  I thought for my older friends, this would be a great way to practice a variety of math skills.  What if you wrote a variety of number sentences on the different egg halves, such as 4*9,  24.8 - 0.39, 2(33+79), etc.  Then, you could give a baggie full of egg halves to small groups or a single student and have them match them up according to a specific relation symbol.  For example, if  you tell them the egg matches have to be less than.  This means the left half of the egg has to be less than the right half of the egg.  They would have to do the math!  Plus, the egg colors probably won't match if you mix them up, so it would be easy to see.  They could always check with a calculator to see if they were correct.  I think this would be a good center activity.
End of School Countdown:  The end is near!  And, I mean that in a good way!  As we approach the end of the school year, you could number the eggs and have a countdown. If you want to save the eggs, don't number them.  Instead, just count out how many you need.  I think this would be fun for the last two weeks of school.  You could put a special treat in each egg, such as sit where you want, and for the last two weeks  your friends have a fun countdown to look forward to.
Fun Test Prep:  I know, an oxymoron!  We have our state testing coming up the first week of May.  It would be fun to fill each egg with a practice math problem or activity and have your friends pick an egg.  Then, they could work in a small group to solve the problem or write a "test worthy" answer.  You could then share with the class the task and how they solved it.

Now, here are some of the wonderful ideas I found in blog land.  Most are for the younger set, but can be tweaked for your older friends.
  1. Rowdy in First Grade has come up with some cute ideas that can easily be adapted for different grade levels.  They include putting writing prompts in the eggs and a synonym match.  check out her post for more great ideas.
  2. This blog Minds in Bloom has a great post with twelve different activities for plastic eggs.  One I really like is for practice in counting change.  Fill each egg with a different amount of real or fake change, and have your friends count and record the amounts.  I would number the eggs so that you can easily check their answer sheets.  You could probably also have them do more with this like subtract/add the change in egg 1 with the change in egg 3, etc.  Click on the link to see the twelve ideas.
  3. I'm not a music teacher, but if you are this looks like a great idea.  The post is located on the NC School of Education web page.  Essentially, you fill the eggs with different materials (rice, beans, salt, etc.) and the kids will "practice auditory skills by distinguishing differences in sounds made by plastic eggs filled with pebbles, rice, or salt."  The lesson has them go on to create their own musical pieces using the eggs.  For regular classroom teachers like me, we could keep it simple and just have the kids write a story about an animal, creature, object, etc. that makes that sound.  Then, when they read the story aloud, they can use the filled egg to make the sound as used in the story.
  4. Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas has five ideas for the eggs, one of which is the word family idea I posted above.  The one I really like is perfect for the little ones.  She has a match-up with print upper and lower case letters.  They have to match A with a, B with b, etc.  Very cute!
That's some of what I found out there, but I'm sure you all have more ideas.  Please feel free to post them in the comments.

By the way, did you know that you can fill and mail those plastic eggs?  Me neither!  This picture is from the blog Giver's Log.  She tells you all about how she mailed these treat filled eggs  and it worked.  I have some younger relatives that would love getting a surprise like this in the mail. :-)

I hope you all had as nice a day as I did!


  1. Egg-traordinary ideas! I actually just bought 2 large bags of eggs yesterday (they were already on sale) so I could use them for my math centers - LOVE the idea of using them for math expressions. Thank-you!!!

    Runde's Room

  2. You're making me want to rush out to the store to snatch up those eggs! :) Thanks for all the fabulous ideas! One other idea that came to mind as I was reading this is that you could use the eggs with Greek and Latin roots to see which ones can work together to make real or meaningful words -- e.g., photo + graph. I was working on those with a spelling group today, and I bet that would be a fun way to reinforce it.

    Thanks again!

    1. I shared a link to this over at my blog of recommended Weekend Reading. Have a great weekend!