Friday, January 27, 2017

Stuffies and Jammies

The children have been working on filling a jar with cubes for god behavior. When the jar is full they choose a reward for their behavior. This year the front runners were being kitties and stuffies and jammies. These choices beat out things like a movie and popcorn and a party with our buddies. As you know the final choice was stufies and jammies. See the very cute pictures attached.

We introduced the idea of equations as part of making a math book. Children made pages of tiles for the numbers 5-10 and we have just begun to ask them how they see groups of tiles. In the number six, some might see 1+3+2 = 6, others might see 3+3 = 6 and someone else might see 4+2 = 6. We will wrap this up soon and come back to it later. We continue to tell story problems and ask children to repeat the story we told, visualize it and act it out. W are more interested in laying the groundwork now than in solving the problem. We begin a unit on 3D geometry next week.

We are focused on sight words in language arts. We call them snap words and hope to learn to say them in a snap. We have been playing lotto games, car races and practice cheering the words as well as writing them.We are developing our picture power in ou reading, our snap word power and our sound power (does the word we are reading sound the same at the beginning as the word we see on the page).

We plan to begin a Mo Willems unit soon.

We have stopped doing yoga for now, as Grace can no longer meet with us during the time we had set aside. We'll let you know if we can find a new slot.

There is no school on Monday, March 13th for the kindergarten class only. This is the visit day for next year's class, so we ask the kindergartners to stay home. The following day, March 14th is a field trip to the Fine Arts Center to see Frog and Toad. This will be for K, 1 and 2. We haven't told the kids yet.

Children continue to enjoy doing DreamBox and like to play hide-and-seek. They seem to have dropped the idea of a robot play.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Adding and Subtracting

We are jumping into more complex work in kindergarten math. We played One More One less, where children figured out what the answer would be when they added or subtracted one. Then we played Build It, Change It; one person drew a card and put pennies on the board to match the number and the other person drew a card and changed the pennies to match the second card. Both activities were confusing initially, but the children figured them out with practice. We have been practicing writing numbers and visualizing dots on a ten-frame so we can make a copy.

We are working on our Super Powers in reading. We have learned about pointing power, the power to match the word we are saying to the word on the page. We are paying attention to the first letter and sound in a word to help us match what we are saying to the word we are pointing to. We practiced songs and poems that we are familiar with to learn to match our pointer to what we were saying. We've talked about reread power, where we go back and read again, if our pointing does not match the number of words in a sentence. Next week we will talk about partner power, where our reading partners help us match the print to what we are saying. It's work being a Super Hero!!

We made our own chocolate using cacao powder. We dipped fruit in it and thought it was so delicious that we sent the recipe home with children. That was an alternative to taking home pieces of chocolate dipped fruit to share with our parents.

Some children want to make a play about robots. They are working on costumes, but haven't started work on a script. If they told you to come to assembly to see the play, don't believe them yet. They have a long way to go.

We read a story and talked about Martin Luther King Jr. and how his white friend told him that his parents wouldn't let him play with Martin anymore because he was colored not white. That provoked some thoughtful discussion on skin color and discrimination. The children have good ideas about kindeness that go beyond outrage over the unfairness.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Happy New Year

We had a very busy week leading up to the break, getting gifts ready to send home, making perler bead frames and cards for our buddies and making gift wrap. We hope you enjoyed your ball.

We have introduced kindergarten to DreamBox, an on-line math program. Everyone will have set up their account by the end of the day and a letter will come home on Friday telling you how you can access it at home, if you choose. We realize not everyone has a fast internet connection at home. I will send you their password (a picture) when the letter comes home and will check with Polly to see that the home part of the program is set up later in the week.

In reading we will begin a unit called Super Powers, calling children to use their Super Power of reading to read charts, labels. signs and books!

We are counting, adding and playing games such as Collect 15, One More or One Less and acting out story problems in math.

We have been collecting data on weather for several months and will add information on temperature to this in the new year. We will look at freezing and thawing; liquid and solid states of water as we track the temperature.