Five in a Row's Literature Unit: Mr. Gumpy's Motorcar

By 3:55 PM

We've been busy moving the past few weeks, but here is our last row right before we moved.  We enjoyed reading and doing lessons from a FIAR Volume 2 selection, "Mr. Gumpy's Motorcarby John Burningham.
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Mr. Gumpy's Moto Car Activities for K-3

When Mr. Gumpy decides to go for a ride in his bright-red car, everyone wants to come along -- a rabbit, a cat, a dog, a sheep, chickens, a calf, a goat, and a boy and girl. "All right," says Mr. Gumpy. "But it will be a squash." So they all squash in and, for a while, chug along happily. Then it starts to rain, and the car becomes stuck in the mud. Who will help Mr. Gumpy push the car out? "Not me," says each passenger. In the end, however, they all have to help, and a wonderful time is had by all (Amazon.com summary).

Social Studies:
The location of the book isn't directly stated, but because of certain clues that the author is from England and Mr. Gumpy's phrase "... it will be a squash" we can safely assume the setting is England.  Mr. Gumpy also drives on the right side of the car, which is another clue that it takes place in England.  Thus we placed our story disk on England and T colored the English flag.

Language Arts:
The author uses onomatopoeia as he describes the sounds of the car in the mud, so using a Monster Truck tracing book that I picked up at a book sale and trying to encourage incorporating the shading technique, "cross-hatching," we made our own Onomatopoeia pictures-- monster truck style!  

 Art:
Taking advantage of the few beautiful September days left, we headed outside to practice drawing sun rays. John Burningham took a different approach to drawing sun rays than most artists.  Instead of drawing the rays coming out from the circular sun, he drew the rays using broken lines.

Science:
T received a weather station kit for his birthday, and this was the perfect time to get it out and use it!  Using the weather station, we were able to note the temperature, which way the wind was blowing, rainfall, and a wind gauge.  T also kept track of the weather all week.

Mr. Gumpy didn't like the looks of some upcoming clouds, and he was right to not trust them as they were rain clouds!  Along with reading a book about clouds, I found this cloud viewer online for us to use one day.  T wasn't all that impressed, but we were thinking it was a Cirrus kind of cloud day.

Besides clouds and the weather, I was able to introduce T to friction and traction because of this book.  Apologies for my gross looking cookie sheet!  We used different materials-- foil, paper, felt, etc. and experimented which one would reduce friction.

T has been introduced to the water cycle in other FIAR lessons, but to make the process more hands-on, I made this Interactive Water Cycle wheel.  Here he can "see" that water evaporates into the air, which condenses to form clouds, and finally the clouds get so full that it rains.  


Just for fun:
We made cloud parfaits!  However, instead of whip cream I tried whipping up chilled coconut milk and it was a "just for fun" FLOP!  The coconut milk needed wayyy more vanilla than I had on hand...  Neither T or Little Sis enjoyed it. Bummer!  Nonetheless, we had a great row!

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