When I packed up my cart, I included navy blue 9 x 12" construction paper, yellow squares, and black strips. The idea was that students would use the navy blue as their placemat, then use it as the background for a constructed home for their clay owl. I pictured a black tree silhouette and a yellow moon. I even thought about how I would teach making the tree... V's and Y's..V's & Y's! I wasn't prepared for when I asked the first graders where their owl would live. First student said a tree, a second said a nest, then they started getting creative. "A house, like a real house with a TV!" "underground!" "my bedroom!" "a house IN the tree!" So, I scrapped my step-by-step boring construction of a tree and moon, and let the kids draw whatever kind of habitat they wanted with pencil. We traced with Sharpie and colored with regular crayons Had I been in my classroom I would of used color sticks, or construction paper crayons, however the regular crayons gave it a nice dark night feeling. First graders understood that their owls are most active at night.