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March 9, 2012 A Pot of Golden Activities to Help You Celebrate St. Patrick's Day By Sharon Taylor
Grades PreK–K

    St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated each year on March 17th. This year since St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Saturday, I encourage you to join in the fun on Friday, March 16th. There are many traditions and symbols associated with St. Patrick’s Day. This year my class decided to participate in activities centered around the theme of "luck."

    If you want to be lucky this St. Patrick’s Day, read on as I share some of our fun with you!



    A Lucky Day

    To kick things off we read the story Fluffy’s Lucky Day by Kate McMullen. This is another story of everyone’s favorite classroom guinea pig, Fluffy. In this book Fluffy meets a leprechaun that leads him into a field to find a pot of gold.  When Fluffy wakes from his dream, he finds that the leprechaun has tricked him and that he has no pot of gold. Nonetheless, on this St. Patrick’s Day, Fluffy does have very good luck in finding something better than a pot of gold — a pot of golden corn!

    After reading this story, our class discussed what it means to be lucky. Each student completed this "Lucky Day" activity sheet.  For this activity, students were encouraged to finish the writing prompt about what they would eat, see, play, and get, and where they would go on their Lucky Day. Students later gathered on the carpet to discuss their work.  



    Four-Leaf Clover

    While it's the three-leaf shamrock that we associate with St. Patrick's Day, I used Michael Waguespack's book Clover Hunt to introduce a wee bit of fun, having my students search through the book for the rare four-leaf clover. We then discussed how finding one is said to bring extremely good luck.

    Next, students created lucky four-leaf clover headbands to wear all day. Use this four-leaf clover pattern from Scholastic to make them with your class.

    After reading our story, students hunted through plastic bins filled with clovers in search of those with four leaves. They looked like miners!


    Everything Green

    If you don’t want to be pinched, you better wear your green! We made a bubble map of all the things we could name that are primarily green. 

    We even made a leprechaun float by mixing lime sherbet with Sprite. We used this to wash down our Lucky Charms during snack time! Use these cute labels to top off your own Lucky Charms snack.


    How to Catch a Leprechaun

    It is very difficult to catch a leprechaun, but it is also tons of fun!  Read The Leprechaun Trap by David and Kelly Clinch to your class.  After reading this story, lead your class in a discussion about how they would catch a leprechaun.  Allow your students to complete this How to Catch a Leprechaun! (PDF) activity sheet.  Next, have your students work in groups to create their own leprechaun traps. Give them small boxes, bags, and other craft items to use. There is no right or wrong way to build a leprechaun trap, so allow them to be creative.

    After the students build their traps, allow them to practice counting out a given set of coins to add as bait.  I also allowed each group to share their traps by explaining how it worked to the class. 

    Although my students didn’t catch the leprechaun or his pot of gold, they did catch a special treat and a letter from him. I placed these items in their traps while they were out. The smiles on their faces when they returned was definitely my pot of gold!

    Take a look at two of our leprechaun traps:


    Sort and Graph Lucky Charms

    I gave each of my students a Ziploc bag full of Lucky Charms cereal.  Students were instructed to sort the marshmallows by shape and record how many of each kind they had.  Next, the class  collected all the marshmallows by shape and graphed how many of each we had. You can see a copy of our sort and graph activity sheet.


    What do you have planned this St. Patrick’s Day? Comment below.

    May the luck of the Irish be with you this St. Patrick's Day!



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Susan Cheyney