This morning during our Picture Talk, we spent time talking about how to disagree respectfully. As they children studied the photograph, they had different ideas about what was going on in different parts of the photograph. We took time to study and think before talking, so the children had ideas about what they thought was in the photograph. When they talking with their partner/s, they soon realized not everyone agreed, but listening in, I heard children being respectful for the most part. We talked about instead of saying "no, that's not what it is" we talked about asking "could it be..." We also talked about what stilts are, as they are an important part of this photograph. We talked about thinking fluently to share other ways of fishing. Ask me to tell you about this photograph.
Have a nice evening!
Today we started our day by studying this painting by Guseppe Arcimboldo. Ask me to tell you about this painting.
We began a short health unit about nutrition. We made a list of why it's important to make good nutrition choices and how this helps your overall health. We read a poem about healthy food and found words with short e, long e and silent e.
With the beginning of a new marking period, we have new academic success skills. We learned about persistence today. Ask me to tell you what persistence means. We thought about times we have been persistent and how being persistent will help you in learning. We watched a short video from Thailand that shows what persistence is and how being persistent helps to solve problems. Ask me to tell you the main idea of this story.
In Writing Workshop the children wrote about a time they were persistent. This was an independent writing piece which we will use tomorrow to set a writing goal for this marking period.
In math, we reviewed subitizing with ten frames. We practiced first by looking at these fast ten frames. Ask me to show you how I am learning to identify the number of dots quickly without counting.
We also enjoying watching a snow flurry today. We really got a better understanding of the word flurry because there were so many snowflakes falling for about 4 minutes, then it stopped almost completely! It was a very nice brain break just stopping and watching those snowflakes!
Have a nice evening!
We have been talking about pedestrian safety. We focused on avoiding distractions like cell phones and horseplay. We watched a short video you might want to watch again with your child. Ask me to tell you what the pedestrians are doing to stay safe while they are walking. Ask me to show you the paper I brought home today that tells a walking safety rule.
We had a visit from Mrs. Kanter yesterday. She discussed making and keeping friends with the children. Today they did a paper she left for them that asked them to draw a picture to show how they make and keep friends. They drew a picture and wrote what they do to make and keep friends.
Today we studied an interesting photograph of some beetles. We studied, noticed and wondered first. Then, we looked at the title of the photograph and thought about why that was a good title. They did a great job explaining to the talk partners why the title fit the photograph. Ask me to tell you about why this title is a good title for the photograph below.
Our mealworm pupas have begun to emerge as darkling beetles. We have a couple that started out white, but have now turned to a rusty color, and then will turn black. They are many more pupas, but since our room will often be cooler or cold in the evening and weekends, the other darkling beetles may take longer to come out of their pupa. We watched an amazing time-lapse video that shows the darkling beetle coming out of the pupa. We thought it looked like someone trying to get out of their sleeping bag without unzipping it. Enjoy!
Today your child is bringing home many papers! Mrs. Park is preparing for her maternity leave, so you will find some art projects. They are also several writing workshop papers in with other papers. Some of this writing was done while I was testing, for example The Bear movie papers and the pedestrian safety writing was all done while I was working one-on-one so you can see how independent the children have become as writers and illustrators. Our testing is now over for mid-year and our classroom routines will get back to normal, as will our schedule. I like days off as much as the next person, but this has been a little over the top lately!
Have a nice weekend!
For our Picture Talk this morning, we studied this interesting photograph. This map of the United States is made of different types of corn. The United States grows more corn than any other country in the world.
Today we talked about how we have grown and changed over the five or six years we've been on this planet! We read a poem about growing and changing and made a list or used pictures and labels to show five things we have learned to do in that time. We chose one thing we were proud to have learned in the past year and wrote about it too.
We had a great time studying the timelines we made of our lives. I am so impressed at the work the kinders did. I know that was a big time commitment on your part as well, so I thank you for helping the children get started and for getting them the materials they needed.
We had a visit from our Bear Buddies in Ms. Wang's class. They asked questions and gave compliments as they looked at the projects. The children enjoyed sharing their projects with the older kids!
Have a nice evening!
Today was a busy day. I continued testing, and did a few quick assessments of the kids to finish up the marking period. We read a great book called Penguin Problems, by Jory John. This book is about a penguin who complains about everything! Ask me to tell you three things the penguin complains about. A walrus has a talk with the penguin and points out the beauty of the world around the penguin and the love of his family and friends. It's a great book that shows everyone has problems, but a good attitude can make handling those problems easier. The penguin, we think, still needed some work with that philosophy at the end of the book, but change doesn't happen over night! This book really made the children laugh with great illustrations drawn by Lane Smith of The Stinky Cheese Man fame.
We are looking forward to sharing our timelines tomorrow. We will set it up as a little museum. I'll be sure to take lots of pictures to share. Thank-you for your help in getting your children the materials and pictures they needed for this project.
Have a nice evening!
Today we studied photographs of bears and wrote questions to use in our research about bears. But before we jumped into the information texts, we read a great book called There's a Bear on My Chair, by Ross Collins. This book is a lot of fun. While the illustrations are somewhat simple, the vocabulary is challenging. We stopped along the way and used the illustrations and context clues to figure out the meaning of the tricky words. There's lot of rhyming with some very sophisticated words. Here is the author reading the story, with a little commentary along the way. The children have not seen this video, but I know they would enjoy hearing this story again.
In Writing Workshop, we learned to use a simple graphic organizer. We read an information text about polar bears. Then we recalled some of the facts we learned about in the text. We learned about just using a few words instead of writing sentences to create notes to use in writing a report or book. These notes, and others the children will be writing next week, will be used in creating a book written by the whole class. Below is the example we wrote together.
In Health today, we talked about calling 911 and fire safety. Your children may be asking you about what they should do in case of a fire at your house. We talked about establishing a safe place to meet. We practiced Stop, Drop and Roll. Ask me to show you how I Stop, Drop and Roll.
Have a nice weekend!
Today we visited Massachusetts on our Read Across America journey. We read the class Make Way for Ducklings, by Robert McCloskey. We stopped along the way to talk about interesting words such as beckoned, responsibility and two meanings of the word bank. Ask me to tell you what a river bank is.
The ducklings in the book have interesting names. All the names end with ack. We talked about how ck is sometimes found in the middle or end of words that have the /k/ sound. We worked hard and spelled words with ack, adding endings and a couple with prefixes. I couldn't trick these little writers! They did a great job of writing the words quickly. They drew a picture of their favorite part of the story and illustrated with brown crayon, like the brown ink used in the illustrations in the book.
We have been working with decomposing numbers. We used two-sided beans to shake and dump to find all the ways to make 7. Ask me to tell you three ways to make 7.
We have been reading information texts about bears to prepare us to write a class book about bears. Wednesday we read about grizzly bears. Ask me to tell you what makes them different than other bears, and something new I learned about bears.
Wednesday we read a poem about eggs. We continued our work with vowels and looked for short and long e words. We also watched a great book on Reading Rainbow called Chickens Aren't the Only Ones. Ask me to tell you four animals who hatch from eggs.
With help from Mr. Sheetz. I'm trying to get the kids to move on to a new song. Octopus's Garden is one song we're working on. I thought I'd get them interested with this amazing photograph from National Geographic and this video of octopus eggs. Maybe that is the garden. Enjoy!
Have a nice evening!
Today we started our day by listening to an information text called Watch me grow; Bear. This book showed milestones or key events in a brown bear's first year of life; The information we read in the book is also what we saw in the Disneynature movie Bears.
We also read a poem today called Baby Chick, by Aileen Fisher. This poem had many short e words in it. We found the short e words and thought of more words with short e. The poem questioned how chicks know how to get out of the egg. We watched a short video to see a baby chick hatch. I chose this video for two reasons; first to show the chick hatching, but the second reason was that the video had the song "What a Wonderful World" in it too. I thought this, along with showing them a songbook of that song, might introduce another song into their repertoire. I love Take Me Home, Country Roads, but they spontaneously burst into song several times a day singing THAT song. I went in the closet yesterday for less than a minute to get another container for the mealworms, and when I came out, they were singing it AGAIN! It really makes me smile to hear them sing, and I look forward to encouraging them to sing other songs. Back to the chicks. Here's the video.
We continued to work with addition today. The children worked on a paper that showed problems written horizontally as well as vertically. They are doing a good job using different strategies to solve these problems.
We visited another state on our Read Across America journey. Today we visited Tennessee and read John Philip Duck by Patricia Polacco. This book is inspired by the story of how the famous Peabody ducks began swimming in the fountain in the lobby. Ask me to tell you the story! We watched a short video about the Peabody Hotel ducks.
Please be sure to look for the Montgomery County Public Library Card that your child brought home today in their folder. This is good for one year. You can go to the library to get a permanent card. This card can be used to sign in to the library website and access many resources. The Kid tab has magazines and games, as well as music that can be downloaded. Just don't download Country Roads. Kidding. I really do love that song.
I also sent home instructions for a Timeline Project. This is not due until Tuesday, January 24. With the upcoming days off, I thought this might be the perfect thing for your child to work on!
Have a great weekend, and stay safe!
Today we went to an assembly about the Montgomery County Public Library. The children were shown some things they can access at home with a library card. Each child will be getting a library card tomorrow. Be sure to look for it in their backpack. They are so excited!
We studied these cuties this morning. Ask me to tell you what I noticed and what parts insects have that you can see in the photographs.
We learned about the life cycle of a butterly and learned a song that named each part of the cycle. We drew a diagram that showed the life cycle and labeled the parts and wrote a title for the diagram.
We used hand lenses today to study our mealworms up close. We looked at the mealworms that are in the larva stage as well as some who are in the pupa stage. We fed them leftover carrots from Sera's lunch. Thanks for that, they seemed to enjoy them. What we wanted to see was the mealworms moving toward the carrots so we could easily see which end was the head and which end was the tail. We also saw, with the hand lens, the mealworms open their mouths.
A hand lens is a great science tool that the students love to use. While waiting for their turn to study the mealworms, they used a hand lens to study other things in the room.
In math, we worked with word problems. We read simple problems and determined if they were an addition problem, joining together, or a subtraction or taking apart problem. We practiced drawing a picture to solve the problem, using a ten frame, using a number line, and writing a number sentence. I added a math game to our homework website to practice story problems more.
I have forgotten to pass out the Read to Me, Talk to Me books again today. I'll try and remember tomorrow and you can keep them until Tuesday, January 24.
Have a nice evening!
Today we learned more about mealworms. We studied an up-close picture of mealworms and talked about what we noticed. We read parts of an information book to learn more about parts of the mealworm body. We also paid attention to text features in the information book. We looked at the contents page, headings, labels and information boxes. Ask me to tell you what I know about the mealworm's body.
We also noticed that some of our mealworms are going through metamorphosis. Some of our mealworms have molted, and a few larva have moved into the pupa stage. We watched a short, time-lapse video that shows a mealworm larva morphing into a pupa. (It's got great music if you don't care for the content.)
In math, we worked with decomposition of numbers. We talked about what the word decomposition means, and how we can break down numbers into parts in math. We found different ways to make 3, 4, 5 and 6 today. We used towers of cubes to take apart and show the number in different ways. So we found 1 and 4 make 5, and 2 and 3 also make 5. We talked about how the order of the numbers does not matter. We will continue to talk about decomposition of larger numbers.
We also learned a game called Cover the Snowflakes. To play this game, you need a regular die, and a die with 0, 1 and 2. Partners take turns rolling the dice, then adding the numbers together and placing a counter on the snowflake with that number. The first person to cover all their snowflakes wins. We used the counting-on strategy to play the game, so if a player rolled a 5 and a 2, they would count on from 5 two more to get to 7.
We watched more of the Disneynature movie Bears today. This movie is so incredible as it shows this mother bear in the wild raising her cubs. They are constantly on the move looking for food.
Today's movie section did have some nervous moments in it. Some of the adult bears fight and a wolf and a bear do threaten the bear family, but I reassure the children that all the bears survive. Tomorrow we will watch the last part and it's more about finding food. We watched a short clip to lighten up the mood and how to be a Disney bear. Enjoy!
We are testing currently in reading. The kids are doing a great job, but all the testing is one on one. We are getting through it and should finish in the next couple days.
Have a nice evening!