Quick, guess what this is!
Raise your hand if you said “melted snowman!” (Or “snowperson” as I refer to them…)
Here in NJ we haven’t had a lot of snow yet. I can’t complain about the mild weather, but I have so many snow-related songs and games, and I want to get them in before spring! Oh well – there’s plenty of winter left.
The following activity, I have to tell you, is seriously boring. But here’s the thing – children LOVE it. I’d be happy to credit the writer of this song, but I forget when I even learned it. It was so long ago the original snowpeople have probably long since melted, evaporated, turned into clouds, and fallen down again in flakes, through numerous incarnations.
So here’s the song (the tune is the first two lines of “Five Little Pumpkins,” repeated):
Five little snowpeople all in a row,
Each with a hat and a big red bow.
Down came the sun and it stayed all day,
And one little snowperson melted away.
I hope you’re still awake, because here comes the fun part: You line up five children to be the snowpeople. They pat their “hats,” tie their “bows” and spread out sunshine-fingers at the appropriate times. And at the end, the snowperson on the end gets to melt! And guess what, young children love to melt, as it turns out! Some simply slide to the floor, some melt superfast in a big whomp, and some snowperson divas take an agonizingly long time, rehearsing for the snowperson-melting scene in “Hamlet.” (Don’t you remember it? Now we know who skipped English class that day!)
So – it’s all about the melting with this activity. You may as well take the opportunity to explore some other melting things. How long would it take an ice cube to melt in a bowl? Find out with your class, and then try to predict how long it would take ten ice cubes. And start a discussion – ask your students why they think snowpeople melt. Yes, they melt when the weather gets warmer… but then why don’t cars melt when it’s warm? Why don’t we melt? Lots of good stuff to explore and talk about!