During March, there are several holidays and events at the beginning of the month. Daylights Savings Time begins and St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated, which can be a fun event for children. These events provide great cross-curriculum lessons to actively engage children in learning.
Daylights Savings Time
Daylights Savings Time began this Sunday, March 13th at 2 a.m. This is the time when we ‘spring forward’ our clocks 1 hour until the fall. This allows for more daylight time through the spring and summer months. Incorporating this event as a lesson can include history, science, and economics.
Daylights Savings Time (DST) is observed in the North America and Europe, along with several other individual countries around the world. It was originally proposed in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s as a way to extend the day for leisure in the evening after a long, physical work day and also to limit the use of electricity and conserve coal. There have been many statistical studies since the mid 1970’s to determine whether DST actually reduces the costs and consumption of electricity along with other health benefits, political impact, and technology issues. Collecting and analyzing this data in more detail is an excellent activity for advanced students.
Children with special needs might find it hard to adjust to the time differences because of times for meals, getting ready for school, visiting doctors, or taking medication. Educators should definitely cover this topic before it happens along with family support to help make the transition easier.
- SMART Board Daylight Savings Time Activities: Great interactive lessons, especially Daylight Saving Time: Practice Telling Time
- Elementary Lesson Plan on DST: Have children write a reflection paper about how they feel returning to school the day after DST
- Tips for helping special needs students adjust to DST
St. Patrick’s Day
St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated on March 17th. This year, it falls on a Thursday. This holiday was originally a religious holiday in honor of Saint Patrick celebrated in Ireland. Today, St. Patrick’s Day is not only celebrated in Ireland but around the world. The traditions vary from country to country and even through the various cities in the United States. This makes for an interesting culture and geography lesson. They can learn about the various traditions that are celebrated around the world along with the historical significance of the holiday.
Incorporating lessons on St. Patrick’s Day will help children with special needs to learn about different culture and people. This helps to expand their knowledge beyond home and school, bridging the gap to include the community and the world.
The tradition in the United States is to celebrate Irish heritage and culture. Traditions include wearing green, shamrocks, leprechauns, and the rainbow with the pot of gold. Children of all ages love to see the tiny leprechaun footprints scattered about the classroom. Typical meals eaten on St. Patrick’s Day include corned beef, cabbage, and potatoes. Parades and parties, festivals and dying fountains and rivers green for the day will take place in many American cities with large Irish-American populations. Children could taste the traditional Irish food, make crafts associated with St. Patrick’s Day or even watch parades streaming on the Internet.
- St. Patrick’s Day Facts & Sites for Kids
- Cross-curriculum St. Patrick’s Day Activities
- St. Patrick’s Day Plans, Printouts & Interactive Whiteboard Activities
Article By Laura Ketcham
Picture By Bruno Girin