Library Blog

At Home Ideas to Enhance Learning for Elementary Schoolers:  St. Patrick’s Day

Rainbow walking water science experiment

Whether your child is back in school full-time, a  combined  virtual/school student or  an  all-virtual  learner, you may be thinking of ways to build on their  education at home.  The following  activities are a fun way to practice math, science, literacy, movement, and music  on St. Patrick’s Day. 


Rainbow Shaker WandTo create this musical craft you will need the following supplies: Paper towel tube, foil, glue, tape, cotton balls, scissors and rice, beans, or hard pasta to put inside. Cut several squares of foil to place at the bottom of the paper towel tube. Make sure it is at least 3-4 layers thick. Secure with tape. Cut a strip of black, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple construction paper, each about an inch wide, that will be wrapped around the paper towel roll. Start with black at the bottom. This is the pot. If you have gold sequence or glitter you can add to the top of the black strip for gold.  Then move up the tube, gluing the other colors to make the rainbow. Put your rice, pasta, or beans in the tube, about halfway full, and add few more squares of foil over the opening and secure with tape. Next glue the cotton balls over the tape to make clouds. Shake your new rainbow wand as you sing your favorite Irish songs. 


Acrostic PoemCreate a poem using a word we commonly see around St. Patrick’s Day. Write the word down the left side of a piece of paper. The first word of the sentence must start with the letter on that line. Example: CLOVER-Clever Leprechaun get Out of Very Elaborate traps Repeatedly. Some other words you can use could be RAINBOW, GOLD, GREEN, SHAMROCK, LEPRECHAUN, IRISH etc.    


Word Maker  How many words can you make out of the letters in St. Patrick’s Day? Write St Patrick’s Day on top of a piece of paper. Using these letters, see how many words you can make. Examples: trick, pat, sat. 


Lucky Charms Counting and Graphing   They are magically delicious and can be an enjoyable way to practice counting and graphing skills. With a box of Lucky Charms, take a few handfuls and separate all of the marshmallows from the cereal pieces. Then make a graph for the marshmallows once they are separated. You can make your own or Print out this free graph if needed. Count how many of each type of marshmallows you have. Which do you have the most of, least of and the same? And of course, they can be eaten as a tasty treat after you are done.  


Skittles Sorting and Patterning  Taste the rainbow, after you have completed this fun, color sorting and patterning activity. Using a pack of Skittles Candy, sort all the candies out by color. Then once they are sorted, make colored patterns to work on sequencing skills. Example: Green, red, red, green, red, red. If you want to put your senses to the test, you can also close your eyes and try and guess the flavors by using your sense of smell and taste.   


Magic Rainbow Mix colors and see how water molecules move with this fun and easy science experiment. You will need 7 cups, water, food coloring and paper towels. Place the cups in a row and put water in the first, third, fifth and seventh cup. Put five drops of red food coloring in the first and seventh cup. Put five drops of blue food coloring in the third cup and five drops of yellow food coloring in the fifth cup. Take a half shee of paper towel and fold it lengthwise and in half againlengthwise. Then bend in the middle so it makes a V shape. Place the paper towel with one end in the red food coloring and the other in the empty cup. Place the next paper towel in the cup without water and the blue colored cup and so on until it looks like there is a bridge connecting all the cups together. After a while you will see the color from one cup, move up the paper towel and into the other cup. What happens to the cups that had no water? What new colors do you see? 


Green Glitter Slime Create some gooey, green leprechaun slime using an easy slime recipe, green food coloring, and glitterYou will need 1/2 cup of Washable PVA clear or white glue, ¼-½ cup of liquid starch, ½ cup of water, green food coloring, and glitter, beads, confetti or whatever you would like to add to you slime. In a bowl add ½ cup water and ½ cup of glue. Mix well. Now add the color, glitter, beads and/or confetti. Pour in ¼ cup of the liquid starch. Stir until the liquid is gone and the slime has formed. Add more liquid starch if needed. You could even use your new slime in your leprechaun trap. See below. 


Scavenger HuntHow many green things can you find in and around your house? Go on a scavenger hunt and see if you can find the color of St. Patrick’s Day…GREEN!  


Irish Step Dance What better way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day than to learn to Irish Step Dance. Get all your energy out by watching a video on Irish Step dancing and trying the moves out yourself. Here is a video on Irish Step Dancing to give you an idea of what it is all about. There are plenty of other videos on YouTube for beginners if you would like to take more time to learn the movements. 


Leprechaun Trap Leprechauns are known to be sneaky and hard to catch.  Create a plan and make a trap to catch a leprechaunand maybe if you are lucky, you will also find his pot of gold. What do you have around your house that would make a good trap for this wee little lad? 

If you need some ideas for your leprechaun trap, we have some terrific books to read at the library. You can call the library at 330-744-8636 or visit www.libraryvisit.org to put one of these titles on hold. Or check out the Hoopla App where you can find books, music, and DVDs on everything Irish.  


Books for St. Patrick’s Day

How to Catch A Leprechaun by Adam Wallace 

How to Trap a Leprechaun by Sue Fliess 

Three Ways to Trap a Leprechaun by Tara Lazar 

The Gingerbread Man and the Leprechaun on the Loose by Laura Murray

Amy Beth

Amy is a Youth Services Library Assistant at the Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County. She graduated college with a degree in Elementary and Early Childhood Education. After many years in the classroom, she was able to combine her love of books with her joy of reading by working at the library. Her favorite pastimes include hiking, kayaking or anything that gets her outdoors.