Literature-Based Snow Science and Art Activities for Snowflake Bentley

This post is part of the 31 MORE Days of Literature Unit Studies series. You can find all of the links to the thirty-one studies in this post. If you’d like to use these ideas to create your own unit study, this post has step-by-step instructions as well as a free unit study planner. (Want to know more about what, exactly, a unit study is? This post will help.)

While you’re reading and working on your unit study, you can download this free printables pack of graphic organizers for reading. It has a plot chart, venn diagram, KWL chart, two mini book report organizers, a character analysis chart, a plot outline chart, and a reading response sheet where students can record facts while reading.

Snowflake Bentley Unit study

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One year my younger daughters read about a man nicknamed Snowflake Bentley in their homeschool co-op class. They were interested, and so was I. I learned a little from them and looked up this interesting man. He was a scientist/artist who studied snowflakes. He was doing STEAM activities long before there was such a thing.

There’s a beautiful Caldecott award winning book about his life- Snowflake Bentley. It’s a great book to read with the kids and a great jumping off point to do some snow-themed art and science of your own. The book is a good one to use with multiple ages of kids as well. There is more simple text throughout and then more factual information presented in the snowflake sidebars.

Book Information

Title- Snowflake Bentley

Author- Jacqueline Briggs Martin

Recommended ages- PreK-3rd grade

Synopsis- Wilson Bentley was born in 1865 in Vermont. From the time he was a child he was fascinated with snowflakes, and as he got older he longed to capture their images with his camera. When he was able to obtain a microscope with a camera, he began to explore snowflakes in a more scientific manner. His beautiful snowflake photography is still used in places today.

Snowflake Art

Make some cool crayon resist snowflake art with these instructions from Classic Play.

Even the little ones can in on the fun with Snowflake Stamp Art.

I love the snowflake sponge paintings in this post.

What Mommy Does has some great free printable snowflake templates that you can print and use for some of these art projects.

This Snowflake Canvas Art Project is another one that you can let the little ones do along with the big kids.

Kids Craft Room has an interesting Sugar Painting Snowflake project.

Do you have pattern blocks? Print these free snowflake pattern block templates for the kids to use.

Or get creative, cut out paper pattern blocks, and let the kids make collages like these.

Snowflake Science

Get a free Life Cycle of a Snowflake booklet from Mama’s Learning Corner.

Make salt crystal snowflakes with these instructions from Little Bins for Little Hands.

Try this Melting Magic Snow and Ice experiment from STEAM Powered Family. (If you live in the South like I do, use finely shaved ice for the snow.)

Even your little people will like watching the experiment in this Fizzing Snowflakes experiment from I Can Teach My Child.

Make a Snowflake Tinker Tray like this one at Cutting Tiny Bites and teach kids about symmetry.

Do this simple experiment to see how much water is in snow. (I think us Southerners could use finely shaved ice for this one as well.)

Snowflake Booklist

Snowflakes in Photographs by W.A. Bentley– This book isn’t particularly a children’s book but is a collection of seventy-two of Bentley’s best snowflake photographs.

Curious About Snow by Gina Shaw

The Story of Snow: The Science of Winter’s Wonder by Mark Cassino

The Snowflake: Winter’s Frozen Artistry by Kenneth Libbrecht

Snowflakes: A Pop-up Book by Jennifer Chushcoff

The Snowflake: A Water Cycle Story by Neil Waldman

Snowflakes Fall by Patricia Maclachlan

Snowflake Bentley unit study

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