We are ready! We painted, made thank-you bags, talked about the sale, and finished out hats. These little guys are ready to sell all kinds of goodies to shoppers on Sunday! A huge thank-you to everyone for making this possible! I know this will be something these kids remember for a long time!
Today we also had a visit from Mrs. Kanter and two first graders to talk about how first grade and kindergarten are the same and different. The first graders answered questions the kids had, and told them about having their very own desk. As you can imagine, this went over very BIG. They are so excited to have their own desks!
We had Talent Time today and enjoyed magic tricks and a very unique recitation of The Star Spangled Banner. We also celebrated May birthday and watched a Curious George story as our birthday treat.
Well, I'm off to the store so I can start baking. I'm so excited and so grateful to all our families for volunteering your time and resources. It's going to be great!
Enjoy the weekend!
Today we read a great poem about a pelican. We studied bird photographs of birds with different types of beaks, then watched video clips of the birds using their beaks to get food. We used household objects to compare the beak and talk how the beak is used to get food. We compared the beaks to pliers, scissors, a straw, a nail and tweezers, and chopsticks. Look at the birds and ask me to tell you about the item we compared the beak to in our simulation.
We watched videos of the birds getting food and eating, and we want to share a couple with you.
And although this video does not show the eagle eating using his beak, I showed the children this video to show this amazing bird catching a fish.
This morning we talked about the No Kid Hungry Bake Sale. We talked about what we are doing, why it's important to work to end childhood hunger, and how raising money for this charity will help children. Tomorrow we will work more with the bake sale and will write a script for advertising over the in-school announcements for our bake sale and raffle.
We went to the chorus concert this morning. The fourth and fifth grade chorus sang songs their teachers picked. We enjoyed the concert and were very respectful of the performers.
We learned about similes today. We listened to the story Quick as a Cricket, by Don and Audrey Wood. The story compares a little boy and his behaviors to different animals. The little boy in the story is actually Don and Audrey Wood's little boy, who grew up to be an author and illustrator like his parents! After we read the poem, we talked about how we could write a poem using similes about someone we love too. We will finish writing and revising this poem over the next couple days.
The children practiced reading their Reader's Theater scripts today. I was amazed to sit and watch how well they worked with their partner(s) and were so self-motivated and focused on reading their part. They are so supportive of each other!
Have a nice evening!
We had a great trip to the College Park Aviation Museum today! Check out these pictures!
A huge thank-you to Mrs. Hsin and Mrs. Domask for chaperoning our trip! As you can see, the children were very busy on the trip. They were complimented on their good behavior and how much they know!
We came back to school, and had Talent Time. Our pianists performed today. They did a wonderful job, and the children recognized several familiar songs they played.
We read our Reader's Theater scripts today. The children enjoyed reading their story with their partners. Finally, we finished reading the fairytale Hansel and Gretel.
It was a busy, fun day! A great way to start off a holiday weekend!
Have a nice evening!
Let's catch up! Sorry I missed a couple days blogging. I had a workshop and a meeting after school a couple days this week and didn't get to blog. So just a few highlights!
We took a nature walk yesterday to study trees. I reviewed the use of the binoculars, cameras, and hand lenses. We studied the deciduous trees by the playground and between the two wings of the building. We will go out another time soon to study conifers. The children were so interested in what they saw, and were amazed at what they hadn't noticed before in some of the trees. They saw beautiful blossoms on some of the trees that you are easy to miss if you are always in a hurry to get to the playground! Their focus was really on using the new tools I gave them, but they did some sketching and wrote some notes about what they saw. They seemed very excited and one child was overheard to say "I'm really into nature now." This was very evident later when we were writing poetry in writing workshop. Several of the children wrote about nature, especially wind since it was a very windy day when we went out!
We are continuing with our poetry unit of study. We practiced trying out different words, and listening to our poems to hear the rhythm of them. I am amazed at their interest and their work writing the poems. They are revising as they go along and reread, and really give a lot of thought to the topic choice and the words they use.
We have been doing some testing in math, and we have been working to extend their understanding of place value by playing Digi-Pig. They love playing math games!
Today we watched a short video of puppies. As we watched, we talked about what we were seeing and searched for words that really told how the puppies were moving and their character traits. We contrasted that with photographs of eagles, then compared those to penguins, and finally looked at kittens. We shared a lot of great words, then the children got to work on writing poems about animals, specifically on how they move.
We read a beautiful story today about a woman from Massachusetts who moves to North Carolina because her husband wants to live there. She is a librarian, and has always wanted to have a brick library in the center of town. But in the blue mountains of North Carolina, there is no money for the town to have a library. They take up a collection and are able to buy a panel truck and, with donations of books, she is able to have a bookmobile. The book is called Miss Dorothy and Her Bookmobile, by Golria Houston and beautifully illustrated by Susan Condie Lamb. We took a quick look at North Carolina and saw photographs that showed those beautiful blue mountains at different times of the year. We also learned that North Carolina is home to many furniture manufacturers. We took a quick look around Cape Hatteras too.
Don't forget, our field trip is tomorrow to the College Park Aviation Museum. Children need a bag lunch for the trip.
Have a nice evening!
Today we welcomed a new friend to our class. We passed the talking fish, and today we told three special things about our family. As part of our school social and emotional learning goal, we talked once again about peace. We read The Peace Book, by Todd Parr. We listened to the message of the book about peace, but studied the illustrations as well to identify Todd Parr's style of illustration. We noticed the black outlines around everything in the picture, the bold colors, and the unusual colors for hair and skin in the book. We used Todd Parr's style and created our own statement about what is peace to us. We sketched first with pencil, then used black marker to make our page look like a coloring book, then we chose bright colors to fill-in our pictures.
Today we worked more with poetry. We began revising some poems, as well as creating new poems. We paid special attention to the beginning and ending of our short poems. We continued to choose our words carefully; we also go back and choose different words to try out and see how it sounds. Our poetry papers are our messy copies because just as authors do, we revise often as we write.
Today we visited our state of Maryland as we read across the United States. We read Aunt Flossie's Hats (And Crab Cakes Later), by by Elizabeth Fitzgerald Howard. Your children insisted it should be cheesecake instead of crab cakes, but since the story is set in Baltimore, I insisted it remain crab cakes. Of course now I need cheesecake for dinner! The story is of two little girls who go to visit their aunt and try on her old hats. Each hat has a memory behind it. Aunt Flossie tells the girls the stories, even though they have heard them before! The hats are a keepsake that help tell the story of this family. Ask me to tell you about Aunt Flossie's memories.
We toured our beautiful state to from the beautiful mountains of western Maryland to the majestic Chesapeake Bay. We saw farmlands, cities, our beautiful capital of Annapolis, and the rich history our state holds with sites such as Fort McHenry. Several of our classmates are ready to head up to Keyser's Ridge and look at the beautiful scenery of the mountains in western Maryland!
Have a peaceful evening!
Today we had a visit with Mrs. Kanter, our school counselor. She talked with the children about bullying behavior. She also talked about what was not bullying behavior and that we give second chances at our school when children make poor choices. She read Llama Llama and the Bully Goat, by Anna Dewdeny. This book explains bully behavior in a gentle way that young children can understand. The book reminds children to walk away from bullies and get grown-up help.
Today we wrote short, simple poems about things we love. We tried out different words in our poems because we know that poems use fewer words than reports and stories usually, and that word choice is very important. The children had a great time writing poems and are anxious to continue with this unit of study next week.
We took the MAP-M test in the computer lab today. The children did very well, not only with the math, but with reading quietly while other children finished. Several children need to go back and finish, and children who were absent will need to go next week to take the test.
We also finished almost all our reading testing. I have a little more to do with some of our new students. Monday we will be welcoming another new student!
We had Talent Time once again today. We had three performers who entertained the audience with their talents. We had a dancer/hula hooper, a singer who composed her own song, and a magician. All three performers were so well-prepared and confident as they performer. And our audience once again supported them by listening well and clapping after they finished.. It's not too late to sign up to perform, if your child hasn't yet!
Have a great weekend!
Today we welcomed a new student from California. You would be so proud of the way the children welcomed him to our room and the way they helped him out all day! I did more testing today, and am except for a few little bits I may need to do, we're done with the reading testing. Our schedule will get back to normal! We watched a short part of Reading Rainbow that featured the book Show Way, by Jacqueline Woodson. The story is about a quilt that was made by six generations with clues to follow to escape slavery of the south and move to the north. We talked about how families have special things they keep and pass along to younger family members. These special keepsakes help tell the story of the family.
We also read Wangari's Trees of Peace, by Jeanette Winter. This book is about Wangari Maathai, and her work to reforest Kenya after so many trees were cut down. She started with six trees, and encouraged other women to plant trees. As word spread about women reforesting Kenya, more and more women joined in and thirty million trees were planted. In 2004, Wangari Maathai won the Nobel Peace Prize for her work with the Green Belt Movement.
Today we also studied some very simple poetry to see how it is different than writing a story or report. Tomorrow the students will begin writing poems of their own.. In math, we talked about tens and some more ones. We were able to move quickly to more tens because this is a topic we worked with earlier and the children have a good understanding of the concept.
We ended our day with a visit to South Carolina. This was very exciting since many of the children have visited South Carolina. We looked at the mountains, the coast, and Charleston. We also took a peek at Fort Sumter and talked about cannons and the start of the Civil War very briefly. Then, we read the book This Is the Rope, which is also by Jacqueline Woodson. This book is about a very ordinary piece of rope that became a family keepsake because of the journey it took with a family as they migrated from South Carolina to New York City.
Today we studied the Baobab tree and compared it to trees we have in the school yard. We looked at some Audubon prints of trees and talked about how we could sketch what we saw in the schoolyard. We talked about new tools we have for the classroom, binoculars and cameras, and got all ready to go outside. Then the lawnmowers started and dust and grass was flying everywhere. Soooo......we are flexible, and will go on our nature study tomorrow. We continued talking about what makes us special, and made torn paper self-portraits. The children did an amazing job and you will see these when you come in for our end of the year program.
I got a lot of testing done as the students worked today, so I am hoping one more day, two at most and we will be finished!
Thank-you to everyone who sent in permission slips and the fee for our field trip!
Just a plug for the Bells Mill Summer Camp...
It's not too late to sign up! If you are interested in your child attending summer camp, please let me know and I'll send home the registration form. This year's camp has great programs coming to it with Mad Science, Reptile Man and a My Gym session. And of course, the camp ends with a mini-field day!
Have a nice evening!
Today we started our day with a song by Mary Chapin Carpenter called I'm Really Glad I'm Me. We talked about what we like about ourselves and used a simple graphic organizer to list what we can do, what we have, and our character traits. We reviewed some traits from the Will I. Am Song "If What I Am" that we used at the beginning of the year. We will be using this organizer to write a poem about ourselves. We also watched a video of the book Unique Monique, by Maria Rousaki and learned about what it means to be unique in a group. We talked about the words ordinary and unique and then drew a picture to show an ordinary thing and the same thing only created to be unique. We continued to work with subtracting 1, 2 and 3, and practiced addition and subtraction by playing games. We visited Alaska today, and read another Cinderella story called The Salmon Princess by Mindy Dwyer.
Enjoy Mary Chapin Carpenter and her song I'm Really Glad I'm Me!