Thursday, October 25, 2012

World Pasta Day

HAPPY WORLD PASTA DAY!  Today, I was the teacher host for our homeschooling group, Home Scholars, and so when I realized that today was World Pasta Day, I ran with it.  Here are some ideas to celebrate your own pasta day!
For the same, I made these Spaghetti and Meatball Cupcakes (you'll see these all over Pinterest) using just a boxed white cake mix and canned vanilla frosting.
For the topping, you will need strawberry jelly (the squeezable bottle works best), Whoppers candy (for your "meatballs"), and white chocolate (to grate over the top of your cupcakes for "Parmesan cheese").
 Using a piping bag (or Ziploc), pipe on your icing (I added a drop of yellow food coloring to the frosting can to make it more pasta-like in color) to resemble a pile of spaghetti.  Once your "spaghetti" is in place, squirt a bit of strawberry jam on the top to resemble sauce, then add your Whopper to the very top.
 Finally, grate your white chocolate over your cupcakes to resemble Parmesan cheese.
 They look great!
For the lesson, I read facts from these two informative books ... Pasta by Jillian Powell, and ...
... Pasta and Noodles by Carol Jones.  Both were packed with all things to do with pasta!
After we discussed pasta in general and the different kinds of pasta shapes, we watched a short video on macaroni, called "Macaroni Polo" from our The Busy World of Richard Scarry: Good Times Never End! DVD.
 Then, after the video, we used different pasta shapes to make these Pasta Bar Graphs.  (This is a great way to illustrate numbers and groups of items.)
 Here are Mags and Olivia, sorting their shapes for counting.
Here are Grace and Stacey, doing the same.
 Again, here's Mags, coloring her bar graph!  :)
 Great job, Mags!
After our bar graphs were done, we used our pasta shapes to get creative and make pictures.  Here was my example for the kids, my map of Italy.
Here's Maggie, gluing on her shapes.
 Today's group!
 Maggie's masterpiece was this picture of her cat, with many bowls of "milk" (using orecchiette pasta, or "little ears").
 Here is Eric, showing us his pasta man, complete with farfalle bowtie and orecchiette hat!  :)
 Liam's "skeleton!"  :)
 Michael's rocket ship!  (I love his farfalle flames!)  :)
After we completed our pasta art, we learned the "On Top of Spaghetti" song using this great read, On Top of Spaghetti by Paul Brett Johnson.
Then, of course, it was time to dig into those cupcakes!
 YUM!
We had a great time!  Before I end this post, though, I'd like to share with you one of my favorite poems by Shel Silverstein in honor of today:

"Spaghetti"

Spaghetti, spaghetti, all over the place, 
Up to my elbows -- up to my face,
Over the carpet and under the chairs,
Into the hammock and wound round the stairs,
Filling the bathtub and covering the desk,
Making the sofa a mad mushy mess.

The party is ruined, I'm terribly worried,
The guests have all left (unless they're all buried).
I told them, "Bring presents."  I said, "Throw confetti."
I guess they heard wrong
'Cause they all threw spaghetti!

Happy World Pasta Day, everyone!  :)

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