Learning Lately

Reading: We finished up working on learning the name, sound, and formation of v and w this week. We began learning about x and y and will finish those letters up next week. We continued working on making connections as we read. We read about a variety of fall holidays and made connections to our own life as well as noticing connections between the holidays.

Writing: We continued to work on doing our best spelling by saying the word slowly and writing a letter for every sound we hear. We learned that we do not have to worry about spelling every word correctly, just try our best. We also made birthday cards for Dr. Majerus.

Math: We continued working on sorting by attributes and the attributes of different shapes. We also practiced writing numbers.

Science and Social Studies: We enjoyed a Mystery Science video about why leaves change color in the fall. We read about a variety of fall holidays (some are in the fall this year but not every year depending on the lunar calendar) such as Diwali, Halloween, Trung Thu, and Day of the Dead. We will continue learning about fall holidays next week as well.

Math Resources

In order for children to grow and develop their mathematical thinking, they need to engage in a variety of activities over time. One way to achieve this is using interactive activities on the computer. Listed below are several websites that provide an opportunity for children to engage in important mathematics. You and your child may want to check these out together to determine what is an appropriate developmental match for your child.
https://www.youcubed.org/resource/parent-resources/ – top pick
https://illuminations.nctm.org/Search.aspx?view=search&type=ac – one of the best
http://nlvm.usu.edu/en/nav/vlibrary.html
http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/ks1bitesize/numeracy/index.shtml look at carefully; it’s British so some activities may not be suitable because the units are different
http://mathforum.org/sum95/suzanne/active.html lists many links, some are appropriate for young children some are not; look at carefully
http://www.learner.org/teacherslab/math/patterns/logic.html lots of text; will need adult support
http://www.mcps.k12.md.us/departments/hiat/websites/math.shtm lots of links to other websites; be cautious and check out the site before your child does
These (AND MANY MORE) can be found by searching for interactive mathematics websites for young children. In your child’s folder this week will be an informational note on how to access Everyday Math games that correspond to our math curriculum.

Heroes’ Day

What an amazing Heroes’ Day! We had a wonderful turn out of heroes. It was so fun to meet everyone and share our school with you. I loved seeing the kindergarteners share their learning with special adults in their lives. Our assembly was amazing. The students who shared their dreams for America really impressed me with their thoughtfulness and positivity. Here are tons of pictures of the fun!

Learning Lately

Reading: We focused on learning the name, sound, and formation of v and w this week. We continued working on making connections as we read.

Writing: We wrote a letter to our families about what we have been learning which you will see during your parent teacher conference. We are working on stretching out words as we spell and putting a letter for every sound we hear.

Math: We practiced number formation with a fun game called Roll and Record. We continued our work with shape attributes by making them with string and toothpicks. We continued to develop our understanding of numbers with a number line game called Monster Squeeze.

Science and Social Studies: We enjoyed a Mystery Science video about how many people are in the world. We celebrated all kinds of heroes as well as reading about community helpers.

Twinkle Twinkle Song and a Valuable Lesson in Respect

Each morning we begin our day singing the Twinkle Twinkle Song from Conscious Discipline as a way to connect with our peers. Here are the words.
Twinkle twinkle little star,
What a wonderful person you are.
With big bright eyes, nice round cheeks.
A wonderful person from head to feet.
Twinkle, twinkle little star,
What a wonderful person you are.

Singing this song to a friend helps each child both receive a kind message about themselves as well as share a kind message with another student. It sets the tone that we all are good, we all are enough and we all believe in each other.
The song also incorporates actions which the kids gently tap their friends near their eyes, and on their cheeks as well as their heads and feet. These actions are another way to build a sense of connection and kindness towards other children. Each day as we get ready for our song we first ask our partner if they would like to be touched and they can say yes please or no thank you. We listen to their wishes and make sure we do what they have requested. This is a very kindergarten way to approach the topic of consent as well as respecting everyone’s bodies and boundaries. I love this build in opportunity to introduce the idea that we are all in charge of our own bodies. We need to ask others if they want to be touched and respect what they say. We also need to communicate our own needs to others.
Here is a little video of our song. If you watch carefully you will notice that one student is touching their partner after they said no thanks and their partner is speaking up and telling them again. Everyday is an opportunity for learning!

Learning Lately

Reading: We focused on learning the name, sound, and formation of l, h, and k this week. We practiced the sight word “this” and “me” in our little book. We practiced making connections as we listen to read alouds. We learned connections are the things books make us think of.

Writing: We continued our personal narrative unit by reading Joshua’s Night Whispers. This book tells the story of Joshua hearing sounds in the night, getting out of bed, and snuggling with his dad. We read to book to see how the author Angela showed who, what, and where in the pictures and the words. Then we tried it in our own writing.

Math: We worked on learning the formation of numerals 7-10 and 0 with the numeral song! we continued our work with counting, understanding quantity and recognizing numerals with games and activities.

Science and Social Studies: We enjoyed a Mystery Science video about why pumpkins are orange.We learned about our country’s flag, the Pledge of Allegiance, and Veteran’s Day to prepare for our upcoming Heroes’ Day celebration. Our cool tool this week was about The Pledge of Allegiance and Veteran’s Day.

Learning Lately

Reading: We focused on learning the name, sound, and formation of p and j this week. We practiced the sight word “this” in our book about firefighters. We continued reading from our chapter book A Boy Called Bat. It has been fun to finish a chapter and read the next chapter title and wonder what might happen!

Writing: We continued our personal narrative unit by reading In My Heart by Molly Bang to help us think about what and who we care about in our life. We learned that writers right about things that our important to them and made a class “heart map” to list things we care about that would be great personal narrative topics.

Math: We worked on learning the formation of numerals 1-6 this week with the numeral song! We worked on comparing the length of objects and finding things in the classroom that were longer and shorter. We also enjoyed using position words to move through a classroom obstacle course!

Science and Social Studies: We enjoyed a Mystery Science video about the biggest spider in the world.We continued learning about fall and made fall trees. Our cool tool this week was about appropriate behavior during class parties.

Fall Trees

Our classroom turned into a forest today! After learning more about fall and how the trees change, we made our own trees using paper bags and tissue paper. This project incorporated so much of what we are learning: science, fine motor skills, focus, work ethic, creativity and problem solving.

Each tree turned out as lovely, vibrant, and unique as the tiny artist who made it.

Learning Lately

Reading: We focused on learning the name, sound, and formation of e and r this week. I assessed each child to see how they were doing with letter names, sounds, and formation. Children who need more practice will work on this during their reading groups along with other beginning reading skills. Children who have mastered this will move on to learning sight words, blends and digraphs, as well as reading skills.

Writing: We began our personal narrative unit this week by reading Rain Feet, a story about playing in the rain. We worked on thinking of a true story from our life and showing it on paper using pictures, details, and labels. I have been modeling writing a sentence after drawing the story so children who are ready for this challenge can go for it!

Math: We played games to compare numerals this week. We also introduced combinations of ten with with game 10 bean spill. We continue to work on basic math skills such as counting, sorting, understanding quantity. We use our small group math time to zero in on skills children need more practice with or skills that challenge the children.

Science and Social Studies: We enjoyed a Mystery Science video about how fish breath. We read about fall and took a walk to look for signs of fall around our school. Our cool tool this week was about respectful behavior during the Monday Meeting.