It was a great Halloween day! The parade was fun, and the costumes were adorable. Our room parents did an amazing job of decorating, planning the snack, craft and mummy game. The kids had the best day ever! A huge thank-you to Mrs. Cook, Mrs. Das, Mrs. Kim, and Mrs. Tonse for their planning and preparation.
Here are a few pictures from our party and of the kids in their costumes. Enjoy!
Have fun Trick-or-Treating tonight. You have perfect weather for it!
Ask Me About Tuesday, October 30, 2018
Today we worked with putting numbers in order from 0-10. The numbers were shown in different ways, so students had to identify the number of tallymarks, fingers, ten frames, and a number word. We also practiced writing numbers in order from 0-20.
We learned the most important word we will learn all year, perhaps in all of elementary school. We talked about empathy. When you have empathy, you are able to make better choices, get along better, and you can help others. We watched the Pixar short "LOU" and first talked with a partner about what we noticed and wondered. Then we talked how J.J., the little boy in the movie, was not being kind on the playground. But then something happened that helped J.J. learn an important lesson. Your child is bringing home two papers about the video short, and I am including the link so you can also see the video if you have not yet seen it, or even if you have. This is a video you will want to watch a couple times, at least, and talk about or refer to often. It has so many important life lessons in it.
Here's the link:
Just a reminder, the parade will start earlier than originally published. Our Halloween parade will start at 9:45. Kindergarten will be the last grade level in the parade. They always save the best for last!
Have a nice evening!
Ask Me About Monday, October 29, 2018
Busy day in kindergarten today! We practiced writing the number 3. This is a tricky number with lots of curves. We also practiced writing numbers in order to ten or to twenty if possible. The kids did an amazing job on the white boards. We will be practicing more on paper over the next few days. We also took time practicing our word wall words. We are not adding new words this week since it's the last week of the marking period. We will be practicing the words introduced so far, and getting ready for a check of all the words we have practiced so far.
We worked on adding more details to our writing. I chose a topic for the students today because I felt it was one that the students could add a lot of details to, and that topic was their Halloween costume. We wrote on paper with more lines, so the spaces were a little closer together. The students practiced asking each other questions to find out more details about the costumes they would be wearing. Then they got right to work writing, sketching and adding labels to their drawing.
In science we talked more about the water cycle. This is a difficult task with many big words that are difficult to understand. One of the most important parts of this lesson is to know that the water cycle continues to go around and around. We compared it to a bicycle wheel. We practiced the order of the water cycle with motions. Ask me to show you the water cycle.
As you probably know, we watch short clips from How It's Made at the end of the day if we get packed up quickly and have time before the announcements. Sometimes we even squeeze in another short video clip, like this one from The Muppet Show. I thought you all might need to hear good belly laughs from your children. They have seen this a couple times, but still laugh every time.
Ask Me About Friday, October 26, 2018
We had a busy day! We had to say goodbye to our friend Hanson. He is moving and today was his last day. We talked about the different parts of the card, how they open like a book, the big message on the front of the card, a more personal message on the inside, and of course where to sign the card. That's a lot for one lesson! The kids worked so hard on their cards, and I got to have a quick peek at them and I know they put a lot of effort and love into them. We know Hanson will do well in his new school and make many new friends!
We worked on the Chromebooks today. We had some technical issues but hopefully next week will be easier. We are going to begin to use them during our Literacy and Math station time, as well as our class time on Fridays. I will be including some beginning keyboarding in the homework next week so the kids can get used to where the letters and numbers are on the keyboard. I wish I had videotaped some of them as they used the Chromebooks. It was like they were at a Ca;itals game!
Have a great weekend!
Ask me to tell you whose birthday it was today! It was Pablo Picasso's birthday. This worked out perfectly because we practiced some of the curved numbers this week, and we worked on the letter Ss today in handwriting! I found these Picasso sketches which show how he used mostly one single line in the sketches, and many curves. We practiced making curves, then tried to replicate the animals Picasso sketched. Then we made them with markers so we could take them home. Here are the sketches we studied:
Have a nice evening!
Today we talked about washing hands. We practiced washing our hands and wrists thoroughly, and talked about when it is necessary to wash hands. Ask me to tell you three times it's important to wash your hands.
In Writing Workshop, we worked on writing longer stories in a booklet. We talked about the beginning of a story, telling how the story starts, then the middle of the story where most of the action happens, then finally the ending that tells how the story worked out. We talked about what we were going to write with a partner, then got booklets and rehearsed what we were going to write on each page, pointing to imaginary words on the page. Finally we began writing, then sketching an illustration that goes with the words.
In math, we practiced writing the number 2 and 5. We also played a mind reader game where children had to guess what number I was thinking of, then changing their guess based on clues I gave them. So if the number was 5, and they guessed 3, I might say, no it's more than three. Then we would talk about what numbers it could not be because they were less than 3, and we would cross them out on a number line. So the children were practicing greater and less than, writing numerals, and using deductive reasoning.
Thank-you for sending back the Read to Me, Talk to Me books and bags. If you did not send them both back yet, please send them in tomorrow so other children can borrow the books.
Have a nice evening!
Ask Me About Monday, October 22, 2018
I've got some bragging to do first! Our class was the only class in the entire school to earn a Bear Buck at lunchtime today. They needed no reminders or redirection during lunch or when walking out to recess. I stopped in the teacher's lounge after lunch, and a fifth grade teacher told me we are so quiet, he is afraid he will trip over us because we are so quiet in the hallways and if he doesn't look down, he wouldn't see them since he is not hearing them. WOW!
We learned more about rain today. We read an information book about what animals do when it rains, then did a quick write to share one fact we learned. Ask me to tell you something I learned about animals in the rain.
In math, we practiced measuring in small groups. We measured using little inch worms and cubes. Then we measured big things with foam feet. We measured a table and our carpet. We also practiced subitizing. We responded to flashcards with ten frames. We said how many dots there were, as well as how many more are needed to make ten. Having that firm understanding of ten is important in our number system. Finally, we compared two numbers and determined which was greater, less than, and equal. We learned about the symbols used to show greater than and less than.
Have a nice evening!
Ask Me About Friday, October 19, 2018
We had a great day! In reading, we learned more about information texts. We know we can learn from studying the photographs, maps, charts, and diagrams that are often in information texts. We used the table of contents to help find the section about wind in a longer book we wanted to read. Ask me to tell you what contents means.
We took a brainbreak and used streamers to move to music. We practiced skipping, sliding, and moving the streamers up high, low and on the side of our bodies. We moved fast and slow to the music.
In writing, we talked about what we can do when we think we're finished. We have a workshop format, so during this time, we are working on writing pieces the entire time. Most of our illustrating is done just with pencil, and we only fancy up our writing when we are taking it through the entire writing process. This makes it possible for the students to spend more time on the text, and to add more details with their pencil to their illustrations that might not be possible with crayons. Today I added a new tool; we now use pencils with pencil toppers instead of erasers. We had some children who took a lot of time erasing over and over and not getting as much writing done. Children were very concerned about their piece being perfect. The pencil topper is a reminder to go back and read what has been written to check to see if words have been left out and that it sounds right. It also encourages those very beginning writers to make their text make sense by writing the sounds they hear in the words so their text can be read by others. They did a great job today with writing the whole time. No one reported they were done writing to me today, and the Writing Station was the hot station today during Literacy Stations!
In math, we counted larger quantities today as we played a game with links. We had long chains of links that needed to be taken apart. The children sat in a small group and passed the chain around with each child removing one chain. They hadn't used the chains before, so this was tricky at first! They had five minutes to take apart as many links as they could, then count them. This gave their little fingers a good work-out! There were still links to take apart, so they all helped to take apart thee links and count.
Enjoy the weekend! Hopefully it will be as beautiful as today was!
Today we learned about another symbol of the United States. We learned about the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia. Ask me what I remember from the information books we read about the Liberty Bell.
We had a bus evacuation drill today. The children got on the bus and were told what to do in case of an emergency or the bus breaking down. They learned about two exits and how to exit the side of the bus. Ask me what I need to do when i get off the bus through the side door.
We have been reading information books in reading. We know there are facts in information books. Yesterday we listened to a song from "You're a Good Man Charlie Brown," called Little Known Facts. We listened to the Broadway version, then watched a cartoon from the Peanuts cartoon show. Lucy is mixed up in her facts, although of course she doesn't think so! Here's the cartoon version. Ask me to tell you what the facts really are that Lucy is confused about!
We need a little more practice subitizing. Here's a fun video to watch to practice subitizing.
If up to five goes well, you can move on to ten!
Have a great evening!
We have had a busy week so far. Let me catch you up on the highlights
Mrs. Kanter visited us on Monday and talked about DeBug. This is a set of strategies children can use if someone is bugging them. We have talked about the difference between someone annoying you and someone physically hurting you. The children have been told multiple times now if someone hurts you to tell a grown-up immediately. But if someone is annoying you, that is bugging you, and there are some ways you can take care of the problem on your own. Here is a list of the steps in DeBug.
This is a lot for kids to learn, so this is something we will continue to talk about in the classroom. The goal is to empower children to solve kid-size problems. Ask me to tell you about the steps to DeBug. I may need help remembering the words!
We are working with a new tool in Writing Workshop. Today we used Spaceman to remind ourselves to put spaces between words. Spaceman goes on our paper between words to remind us to leave space so the reader will know where one word ends and another word starts. It mighty hard to read when it looks like one long word!
We read a book called Decibella, by Julia Cook. This book is about a little girl who has a hard time monitoring the loudness of her voice. Her teacher teaches her different levels for different situations. They used the word "slurpadoodle" to practice the different levels. Ask me to tell you about this chart and the voice levels.
We learned about talking bubbles. When we add talking bubbles to our illustrations, it makes them more interesting. We looked at some Peanuts comics to see how talking bubbles are used to tell a story. Ask me to tell you about this comic strip and why school is important, and why I am important to the people at school.
In math, we have been working tally marks as another to show numbers. The kids are doing great with this! We played a game where I flash tally marks and they write the number on their whiteboard. They were fast, wrote their numbers pretty well with the exception of a few reversals, and could tell what the tally marks looked like. We are continuing to practice subitizing which means the kids can look at dots, ten frames, tally marks, fingers, collections of things and without counting, know how many there are. Talking about what we saw as these things are flashed on and off a screen is a great way for kids to get better at subitizing, but also to give them a good foundation of how numbers work when quantities are joined and taken apart.
We are also measuring in math. This topic will come back later in the year, but we are spending a little time measuring with non-standard units. We are using connecting cubes, links, and other items to measure things around the classroom. We are developing language to tell about what we learned by measuring, especially when comparing items. We are using words like longer, shorter, taller, wider, etc. and replacing words like bigger and smaller.
Have a great evening!