We started our day with a picture/video talk. The children studied this picture and thought about the title, then made inferences about what might be happening in the video we were about to see. We had some children think the big bird in the middle was a trouble maker and was going to do something to the little birds. There was a huge discussion in several groups about whether the big bird was the mother bird, but most concluded it was not because the smaller birds beaks were a different shape then the big bird's beak. The children also talked about how the little birds were feeling by studying their faces. We watch the short first and practiced retelling. We thought about what got the story started, what the events were that happened in the middle of the story, and finally how the story ended. After the children stopped laughing, we retold the story, then talked about what lesson we could learn from the story. We talked about how the big bird was different from the other birds, how he was not welcomed in with the other birds, and how the other birds treated the big bird. Ask me to retell the story, then watch it with me.
In writing today, we wrote about our favorite kind of weather. We needed to clarify the difference between seasons and weather several times. One of the things that often happens as beginning writers start to tell longer stories is that they don't know where to use punctuation. We thought of our idea in our own head, then talked with a partner. We rehearsed the beginning setence that would tell what our favorite kind of whether is. I said my sentence several times, noting how my voice goes down at the end of a sentence, and I used my arm to pull down like I was pulling a balloon down from flying away. After the students wrote their beginning sentence I had them come back to the rug and we talked about adding details that would support our favorite kind of weather statement. Again I emphasized where my voice went down to add punctuation. The students know we don't color when we are in writing workshop unless we have fixed up the piece. I have the children use a pencil to draw their picture after they write. They can add more details in their picture with the pencil. We have more work to do on this piece, but most children started writing longer pieces. We also used paper that added another line and required them to write smaller to fit their words on the lines. I'm really happy with how they did. and we may hang these in the hallway to show off their progress! I will be revising with the students on Monday to add to or take away from their writing. We will also edit for punctuation.
During our computer time, we practiced making movies. I showed the children two ways we can do that on Seesaw. Many of the children had problems with the Chromebook microphone and/or camera not being turned on, so Mrs. E and I had to get that worked out! I think almost everyone now has that worked out now on their Chromebook. I gave serveral ideas for what they could talk about in their movie, but most chose to talk about a favorite book character and used some of the book character stuffies I have collected over the years. They are getting used to recording themselves, so I gave them lots of practice time. We also figured out, and I should have known this, that they needed to spread out. Some of the kids got silly recording themselves, but that's ok, it's part of the process of getting used to seeing and hearing yourself in a movie.
Part of the reason for making movies today was because I will be sending home a project the kindergarten team decided to send home to do instead of doing in school. It is optional and you will get information about it Monday. The children are also going to do a little weather forecast on Monday. They actually will talk about the weather from Sunday, the current weather, and the forecast for Tuesday.
We talked about severe weather in science, specifically thunderstorms, tornadoes and blizzards. We talked aobut what to do during a thunderstorm, and will talk more on Monday about how people prepare for blizzards. We ran out of time today to finish that up!
We have had a few instances of children being excluded by other children ately. I'm sorry to say we have a few groups that have formed in the class that exclude some children. This often happens during the second semester in kindergarten. The children become more comfortable and start testing the limits. So you may see some notes on your child's calendar that you can use to discuss with your child about learning to being part of a group that doesn't leave anyone out. I have had to remind several children to move apart because of talking during lessons or work time, and also excluding others from playing or talking with them. We had someone completely ignored the other day when they tried to tell some children a story in the morning as they were coming in and getting settled. It's a new marking period so it's time for me to move kids around to other tables so they get to know eatch other better, so I hope this helps. I will also be moving their spots on the carpet as well so as we turn and talk to do partner talk they will have different children to talk to. Since next week we eat in our classroom, I will have students make lunch dates with kids they don't know well, and we will spread out in the room so we can have little groups of students eating together that might not normally sit together. We''re just having a few growing pains right now. It happens every year in kindergarten. At least they aren't kissing each other, like sometimes happens second semester. The masks prevent that!
Have a nice weekend!