Tag Archives: writing activities

A Traveling Suitcase in the Classroom

The Traveling Suitcase

A few years ago now — when I taught Grade One — I had a Math Suitcase, a Writing Suitcase and a Science Suitcase in the classroom. Within each suitcase were games and activities relating to certain areas of study. Students took turns bringing the suitcases home. Once home they played the games, engaged in the activities and conducted the experiments found therein with family and friends. They loved them!

Well, one day I was sharing this idea/activity with a colleague of mine and I thought to myself, “Hey! This was so successful in Grade One … why not try it with my Grade Fives?!”

… So now,  if you were a fly on my classroom wall, you would notice a small, well-used suitcase in the corner of our room. It was donated to our class by a parent. The suitcase goes home with a different student twice a week … It is both loved and well used.

& Just in case you are interested in doing this same type of activity in your classroom I have included some information below!

Have fun!


The Traveling Suitcase

1. Students take turns bringing The Traveling Suitcase home. The suitcase goes home twice a week: Monday afternoons (to be returned Thursday mornings) and Thursdays (to be returned Monday mornings).
Please be sure to bring the suitcase back to school so that everyone has an opportunity to engage in the activities enclosed.

2. In The Traveling Suitcase you will find fun, educational activities that relate to our units of study. You may find books to read, experiments to conduct, or puzzles and games to play.Please note that as your teacher, I will be asking you, the students for suggested activities (e.g. What is it that you like to do? Readings? Experiments? Puzzles? Word searches?) on a regular basis and will do my best to include them in The Traveling Suitcase.

3. Once you have The Traveling Suitcase at home take some time to explore its contents. Please choose two or three activities to complete. Some activities must be done with an adult so read the instructions carefully.

4. Be prepared to discuss the activities with the class when you bring the suitcase back. If you have an opportunity please consider taking picture of you engaged in any of the activities. If you email the picture to email I can put it up on the Smart Board the next day!

5. Please take good care of our suitcase. Take care of the books, papers, pencils and items found inside. We have a place for everything so keep everything in its place. Finally, should you notice that anything needs replacing please let me know so that I can have The Traveling Suitcase ready for the next student.

Best regards,

Here are some sites & ideas that I have used in order to “pack my suitcase”:

1. Math:

2. Social Studies:
Word searches
Colouring pages
Easy crafts

3. Science Experiments:
Word searches
Colouring pages

4. For Fun:
Magic tricks: http://magic.about.com/od/libraryofsimpletricks/ig/Easy-Magic-Tricks

5. Books:
Library books based on a topic of study or general class interest