Blueberries for Sal Unit Study
Exploring Blueberries with Sal
As the sun rises higher in the sky the blueberries start to ripen. Plump, ripe and delicious blueberries are one of my children's favorite berries to pick so when we discovered Robert McClosky's classic tale, Blueberries for Sal, we just had to turn it into a Unit Study.
We will read about blueberries and learn about blueberry plants. We can write with blueberry juice and unscramble the blueberry words. As we pick more and more blueberries we will be counting, adding and multiplying the blueberries and then divide them evenly to practice skip counting.
So pick up your tin pail, and tie up your shoes, we're going blueberry picking with Sal and her mother on Blueberry Hill....
Reading Blueberries for Sal
Blueberries for Sal - by Robert McCloskey
Kuplink, kuplank, kuplunk go the blueberries into Little Sal's tin pail. Sal and her mother are picking blueberries up on Blueberry Hill and today we will join them as we begin this unit study. Let's start by reading Blueberries for Sal.
Blueberry Fiction - Language Arts for Multi-Ages
Here are some of our favorite blueberry books. We love to read them over and over again. For the little ones just learning letters we sometimes point out a letter such as the letter b for blueberry and after reading a story go back and look to see how often we can find it on a page or throughout the book.
Increasing Vocabulary - Searching for Words
Children who are learning words might look for the word blueberry rather than just the one letter. This age group loves to use Highlighter Tape to find words in books. You could ask your beginning readers to put a piece of highlighter tape on the word blueberry each time they run across it as an independent activity while working with your other children.
Older children could write stories that take place after the story that you just read, research information about blueberries or read a favorite blueberry story onto a tape for the younger ones to listen to.
No matter what age your children are, they will love listening to long chapter books such as the Blueberries for the Queen. Listening to books with high vocabulary levels is the best way of increasing children's vocabulary.
Letter K - Kerpink, Kerplank, Kerplunk!
"Kerplink, kerplank, kerplunk" As I was working on a unit study for Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey, it stuck me that the words "kerplink, kerplank, kerplunk" all began with the letter K. Now wasn't there another book that had letter K words? Oh, yes, it was by Ed Emberley Klippity Klop
These are the sounds that the blueberries make as they drop into Little Sal's Pail. Notice how the author has used the letter K to begin each word. Since the letter K is rarely used it emphasizes the sound. Blueberries for Sal is a great book to use when introducing the letter K.
The letter K was used in each of these books I believe to highlight the fact that these words are not actually considered words but letter sounds that represent a sound heard. kerplink, kerplank, kerplunk are the sounds heard as Sal drops blueberries into her tin pail. Klippity Klop is the sound of the horse's hooves as the little Knight sets off on an adventure.
Both delightful tales that children of all ages will love, the connection between these two books will be appreciated by older children struggling to spell our complicated English language.
View all my reviews >> on GoodReads
A Tin Pail full of Blueberries
Blueberry Poems for Increasing Vocabulary
- BLUEBERRY POEM - An amusing blueberry poem by Robert Frost.
"You ought to have seen what I saw on my way To the village, through Mortenson's pasture to-day: Blueberries as big as the end of your thumb, ...
- Not Enough Blueberries (poem) by Mary E Lacey on AuthorsDen
We walked and picked berries, and ate almost every one, than when we got home we realized what we had done. Mom looked at our empty baskets, and asked us ..
Hi Ho a Cherry O
Blueberry Picking Game - Blueberry Place Value Game
Pretend that the cherry trees are blueberry bushes.
Each bush has ten holes for placing up to 10 blueberries. Spin the spinner or roll some dice to see how many blueberries to add to your tree. When a tree is full, pick those blueberries and add them to a tin pail. (Only ten blueberries to a pail.)
When you have ten pails you will have counted out 100 blueberries.
Wooden Blueberries - Blueberries for the Place Value Game
These wooden blueberries can replace the cherries in the Hi Ho Cherry O game so that you can play the Blueberry Place Value Game. Blue wooden beads are perfect for creating a fun imaginative game of picking blueberries.
Small Tin Pails for Collecting Blueberries - Blueberry Place Value Tin Pails
Time to pick some blueberries and learn place value. Though children can count to 100 they may not truly understand what the digit in the tens place means. By counting groups of 10 blueberries and then 10 tin pails containing 10 blueberries each, children will develop this concept in a concrete way that will eliminate the problem that students have in higher levels of math because they will realize the digits in the tens column actually represent 10, 20, or 30 rather than 1,2,or3.
Bake a Blueberry Pie
The Math and Science of Baking a Blueberry Pie
Use math to measure the ingredients accurately, set the oven temperature, and measure the time needed to bake the pie. Later on you will be able to use your knowledge of fractions and division to cut the pie into enough equal pieces for all the members of your family.
Use your knowledge of science to observe the way that the skin of the blueberries break down when heated. Notice that the juice coming from the berries mixes with the sugar, they become a sweet solution, a physical reaction, not a chemical reaction. When the crust browns that browns on top, that is a chemical reaction.
Blueberries and the Five Senses
How many of your five senses can you use to explore the ingredients needed to make a blueberry pie?
- See the blueberries - Watch for the perfectly ripe ones, the perfect blue, not red nor black
- Hear the blueberries drop into your tin pail. Kaplink, Kaplank, Kaplunk
- Touch the blueberries, feel for soft ones that may be overripe or under ripe
- Taste those perfectly ripe blueberries and compare them with the red or black ones
- Smell the blueberries as the pie comes out of the oven or the jam cooks on the stove
Making Blueberry Jam
Blueberies of Maine
- Blank outline map of the Maine
Use blue a blue ink pad and the eraser of a pencil to mark where blueberries are grown in Maine.
- The University of Maine - Cooperative Extension: Maine Wild Blueberries - Fact Sheets
Challenge your older children to create a board game that reflects the change in wild blueberry production over time.
Growing up in Vermont we had a few commercial blueberry bushes that grew big, fat blueberries on tall bushes, but the best blueberries were the ones that grew up on the hill. Those wild blueberries were tiny but had more flavor than a whole basket full of the big ones.
Blueberries are ripe during the hot days of July and into August.
Have you ever picked wild blueberries?
Which kind of blueberries do you prefer?
Tiny Wild Blueberries are the Best
Lost on Blueberry Hill - Blueberry Hill Map Skills
Mother and Little Sal, Mother Bear and Baby Bear get mixed up and lost on Blueberry Hill. Make a Blueberry Hill out of play dough and then use the plastic figures to make the tracks on Blueberry Hill. Talk about how important it is to stay within sight of your mother or other caregiver.
Blueberry Patch Collage - Blueberries for Sal Bulletin Board and Word Wall
Tear green construction paper to form the shape of blueberry bushes. Use the hole punch to punch out blueberries and glue them onto the bushes. These can be used to create a Blueberry Hill Bulletin Board. Think of all the other plants and animals that might live in the meadow. Label each plant and animal with words large enough for your children to read from where they sit to write and you will have created a Word Wall that will help your children be able to write stories using words that they might not otherwise remember how to spell correctly as well as encourage the use of a greater variety of words.
One time we found some black fur, cut it out in the shape of Mother and Baby Bear and added them to the scene. How could you add Mother and Little Sal?
Blueberry Coloring Pages - Coloring Pages to Accompany Blueberries for Sal
Tin Pail Kurplunk Music - kerplink, kerplank, kerplunk
Music is about orchestrating sounds. Hold a tin pail by the handle and drop wooden beads (Blueberries) into the pail one by one. Listen to them make the sound, kurplink, kurplank, kurplunk.
How else could you make music using the tin pail and the wooden beads?
Start a rhythm and have each person create their own sound while following along with the music.
Singing about Blueberries for Sal
- Blueberries for Sal
SINGING THE STORY Fill in the missing words. Sing the song to the tune of "My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean". Oh, Sal and her (1) M _____________________________ went walking All over the Blueberry (2) H ______________________________________ They wante
Physical Education and Health
Ride a Blueberry
Children need lots of exercise and as a fun way to add imagination as well as exercise to this unit study I decided to add a metallic Blueberry Hop Ball. My children loved hopping on balls with handles. With a hop ball for each child you can have blueberry races, follow the leader games or even make paths with sidewalk chalk in a large parking lot and hop on vocabulary words from the Blueberries for Sal story.
Make sure that you write the words in very big letters. We found that writing in cursive made the paths more clear and that it was fun for the onlookers to stand on the second floor of our house as one child hopped on the word. Video taping is also another way to get onlookers involved.
The next child gets to run down the stairs as soon as the first child has gotten to the end of the word. (More Exercise)
Blueberries for Sal Lapbooks - Blueberries for Sal Activities
- Blueberries for Sal on Pinterest | 50 Images on blueberries for sal, …
Hands-on activities to accompany Blueberries for Sal Unit Study
- Blueberries for Sal Lapbook
- Who is a girl named Sal and what does she have in common with a baby bear? Written in 1948 "Blueberries for Sal" by Robert McCloskey is a classic tale about a girl picking blueberries with her mom and is a must read for you and your students. In Bl
- Bears Unit Study Activities
Activities to accompany a unit study of The Three Bears