No two snowflakes are alike.
Explain to students that back in the late 1800’s Wilson Bentley was the first to photograph snowflakes by attaching a camera to a microscope. After taking many pictures of snowflakes he coined the phrase “no two snowflakes are alike”. A good book to read is Snowflake Bentley. It tells about his life and his enthusiasm for photographing snowflakes.
To check this out for yourself, place a few pieces of black construction paper in the freezer overnight. The next day take them outside and catch some snowflakes on them.
Look at the snowflakes through a magnifying glass. If you are unable to do this experiment, you can view pictures of snowflakes under a microscope at http://www.cnn.com/2015/02/10/us/microscopic-snowflakes-irpt/ or watch a video of snowflakes under a microscope at https://youtu.be/IzRFdb4r73c .
Discuss students’ observations. If you were able to take pictures or screenshots of the snowflakes, allow students to make posters of their snowflakes with Pic Collage or your favorite app or show their screenshots on the whiteboard. Ask students why they think the snowflakes looked similar but not EXACTLY alike. Explain that snowflakes start out as crystal shapes that are fairly the same but as they travel down from the sky they encounter things such as dust, vapor, and temperature changes that alter their appearance.
“YOU”nique Snowflakes Classroom Display
Have students create paper snowflakes. They can create simple square snowflakes from copy paper or more elaborate 6 sided snowflakes with copy paper. To see a video tutorial for creating simple square snowflakes visit https://youtu.be/3l9Z6iGeW9g. If you have older students and would like more elaborate snowflakes, here is a video tutorial on making 6 sided snowflakes – https://youtu.be/LUFTKDY7mMA.
I have younger students so we made large, simple square snowflakes.
Point out to students that much like real snowflakes each of their snowflakes is unique. No two of their snowflakes are exactly alike.
Give each student a colored square piece of copy paper. Have them write something about themselves that makes them unique and illustrate it.
There are 2 options for attaching the snowflake to the paper. Option 1 is to staple the snowflake over top of the picture like a flap.
Option 2 is to have students glue their snowflake to the top of their picture OR when you are preparing the bulletin board display, staple each snowflake above the appropriate picture.
I glued students’ pictures in the center of their snowflakes. This is optional.
Display students’ pictures and snowflakes with the words “We are “YOU”nique as snowflakes. Each one different, each one special.”