The language of Fall and Halloween
The general idea of fall is to get out into the country and see the changing colors of the leaves. However, Tucson is slow to get fall colors, and even the mountains around Tucson are just now turning. So what can parents do if they are restricted to town?
Fall colors can be found in the local stores and farmers markets. In fact, the parallel shelves, stacks of cubes, round spheres of pumpkins, and cultural traditions and superstitions of black cats offer chances to use academic language.
The new guidelines for schools require teaching academic language in order to assist students in advanced education. What is academic language? Well, scientific words like parallel, horizontal, cubes and spheres are examples.
Biology words and facts. Autumnal flowers that bloom in fall – chrysanthemums are plentiful now, and do not bloom in spring.
Some cactus you see in Tucson gardens bloom in the fall. Cactus is not a Latin word, so cactus or cactuses is the proper plural, not cacti. Look at all the cactus blooming. There are five different cactuses.
Sweet pea seeds need to get cold to bloom in the spring. In warmer climates, people put them in the refrigerator for awhile. Tucson has a semi-arid climate, but it can get very cold nights in winter. Some orchids require a temperature as low as 50 degrees to bloom again.
Pumpkins and squash get ripe in the fall, the plant dies, and the pumpkins can be stored to eat all winter. Grasses also go to seed in the fall, which helps cattle and animals to gain weight for the winter. A fall fair, or a farmers market has a show of colors, shapes and sizes.
How about some math language? Estimate the number of skulls on the shelf. Confirm the number by counting. Are there more skulls than bats? Or are they less than? How many do you get with 3 large skulls plus three small skulls?
Parents can teach fall facts and colors just by going to the store, walking around the block, or visiting a Farmer’s Market.