Extra fun for Peer Gynt

Hello, Moms & Dads! Below find easy EXPERIMENTS, tiny LESSONS and STEAM inspired ACTIVITIES for your dancers at home! PEER GYNT is born in NORWAY, takes a SHIP through FYORDS, and makes MONEY abroad. So, using something like a STEAM format, I’ve laid out these activities to support our learning in ballet!

This month’s ballet story is from NORWAY! National Geographic for kids has a wonderful page on the nation. Crayola’s Flag Coloring sheet is below. As with all coloring pages, click the picture to go to the link where the image should appear for printing.

Link to Coloring Page: https://i.pinimg.com/originals/68/f8/e2/68f8e2af5daa8e4d5ec5736f28b5ec57.gif

I hope the extras are fun! I loved finding them for you:-) Thanks to all the homeschool families for their great work and resources! Sharing really is caring!

Science: Fjords

It’s good to re-address BIG and SMALL. Whenever we have a map we’re seeing something very big in a way to make it look small. A child can’t imagine the actual distance a map covers. Using household objects can help drive ideas home. Don’t have glaciers to show your child? I bet you have ice cubes, and the difference between the two (BIG and SMALL) is part of the learning opportunity.

Location of Norway: Link to NatGeoKids

Norway is part of Europe, and has a very rich culture and history. The map/coloring sheet below shows a wonderful jagged landscape on the water-facing side of the nation and coloring this can help your child make a connection between the land and the FJORDS described below! Look at all the “U-Shaped” cuts GLACIERS made!

Click for Coloring Page

Fjords (img below) are long, narrow bodies of water running between mountains. Watch a beautiful short video of Fjords here.


Do you see the curves in this fjord? These curves in the fjord are often shallow so boats and people can make their ways into the water. They’re made when glaciers rolls down the land and slowly change the land’s shape. Glaciers roll because the surface of the ice melts and moves the heavy ice above.

Surface melting

EXPERIMENT: When you hold an ice cube, the ice feels wet. This is because the place where the ice is touching your warm hand is melting. That makes the ice cube really slippery. The same thing is happening to a glacier. When a glacier touches the land, the surface of ice touching the ground melts and helps the ice slide down. This is how the fjords were made! Watch a great animation describing the process HERE.

Maybe you did this sensory activity before: you put food coloring in water and freeze the cubes so the child can color with them. The colored liquid also demonstrates surface melting.

Technology: Viking Boats

Remember when Peer runs away and gets on a boat? He sails all the way to Africa. Norway has a long boating tradition. Below you’ll see two versions of the “VIKING LONG BOAT.” The first has OARS. An Oar is a flat stick a person has to put into the water and row to push the boat through the water. This boat has six oars, so it will sail well in the fyords, but it is missing one thing.

A simple longboat.

Engineering: Viking Long Boats

Can you imagine the long fjords with a long boat in them? These boats have oars and SAILS. The oars help the boat when there isn’t much wind, but a sail catches the wind to help the boat travel at sea. Below, find a wonderful activity that shows you how to make a Viking Longboat with a sail!

You can make this! Click for directions!

Art: Cartoons, Music and Sculptures

Every time we learn a new ballet story, we learn a story people loved so much they repeated it again and again. Peer Gynt is a story like that. It was a legend, then a poem and then–most famously–a play by Henrik Ibsen. Ibsen asked Edvard Grieg to write music for it and that music has been used in symphonies, operas and ballet.

See Peer Gynt produced by Ballet Santiago

Peer Gynt makes selfish mistakes, which means his story features bad examples (lying, cheating, stealing, etc). There are plenty of animations about Peer Gynt that are more explicit than you’d expect for a cartoon, so if you find one I don’t mention here, you might want to preview it before you show your child. The warning even applies to music history/appreciation videos like this one: which is very charming and witty, but does includes some stuff you may have to explain.

This 30min Russian Claymation from 1979 is fascinating, but includes drinking and…the BUTTONER (the story’s Grim Reaper). This puppet version from Jim Gambler (25min) is geared towards children, but you might find the puppets occasionally creepy. The best and most renowned is still the MEL-O-TOONS version from 1960, but it’s in pieces like “Arabian Adventures” (including Anitra’s Dance), Hall of the Mountain King and “Storming Seas.

Mel-o-toons Hall of the Moutnain King

Our ballet step progression includes arabesque with arms. Below is a coloring sheet. Coloring in the dancers, much like coloring in the curves of the map, helps reinforce the child’s visual understanding of the principles we’re trying to instill.

Coloring Arabesques to better see body positioning.

Math: Money

Most countries have different kinds of money and each kind of money has a different value. America has Dollars, India has Rupees, Japan has Yen, and Norway has Kroner.

The word Krone means “crown,” and one Krone is worth about ten cents, which means the 100 Kroner you see in the picture below is worth about $10 US dollars.

One US Dollar is worth about 10 Norwegian Kroner.

Maybe you’ve used this work at school? Each row is 10, each square is 100 and each cube is 1,000. This is counting like Krone!

Maybe you’ve used this work at school? This work is counting like Krone!

Thank you for reading and I hope you found something here that could be fun to do while it helps support our learning with Peer Gynt!

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