Over the past 2 weeks the kids have watched quite a few different documentaries about Volcanoes and have really enjoyed them. So this week I thought a volcano topic would be a good topic.
I knew there were some Twinkl eBooks about mountains and rivers with activities linked to them so I hoped there might be one with a volcano theme – straight away I spotted – The pack of Pompeii. A story about Pompeii and animals, I knew it would be a hit. So I downloaded the pack (I love these packs – a story together with some learning activities).
We started by reading the story. It is a really well written story with lots of detail describing typical Roman life and what living through an actual volcanic explosion would have been like. I was thrilled that they included details like the fact that there were earth tremors before the eruption and that it hurt to breath in the air because of all the gases. I was really impressed with this story. Really Impressed. My kids loved that the story was written from the point of view of the dogs (lovely details like talking about humans as two legs and how a pet dogs family is its pack – my kids really enjoy this sort of thing). While we read the story we also went through the guided reading questions – I really appreciated that this was included. I found it emphasised interesting points and made the kids think about key elements of the story and the characters.
The eBook comes in a pack with a number of different resources. There is a comprehension for the story and an extra non-fiction comprehension on Pompeii. I was impressed that they included both comprehensions in the pack (both have 3 different sets of questions which you choose from and the answers).
We used the Labelling a Volcano page, the famous volcanoes on a map page and the Volcano Top Cards. But the pack also includes a paper model of a cross-section of a volcano and a science experiment on how to create your own volcano (we have already done both of these before).
After reading the story and doing the activities in the pack there were three angles that I thought we could explore further – volcanoes, the history angle of Pompeii and Roman life and thirdly personifications. We have covered Pompeii in quite a bit of detail before so apart from looking at the Pompeii comprehension included in the pack and suggesting that the kids reread our Pompeii book I did not feel like we needed to do more.
I thought exploring Personifications further would be good. We downloaded the Wildlife personification worksheet and then I suggested the kids write their own version of the Pack of Pompeii but as a different animal (and use personifications in their writing). They choose to write as a feral cat and a wild fish in a river. To help them think about the story they could write we first completed the Pompeii and eruption senses worksheet.
We are going to be looking at Volcanos more next week as part of our tectonic plate topic so for this week we focused on parts of the volcano and significant/ famous volcanoes (we actually found two new documentaries on Hawaii and Krakatoa which we also watched).
I downloaded this really nice Cross-section of a Volcano Poster for the kids
And I also found these Volcano Fact Sheets.
Twinkl have lots of different Volcano resources which are all good. But for me the most outstanding item this week has been the story – The pack of Pompeii – I was really impressed with the story and both my kids thoroughly enjoyed it.