Sunday, January 22, 2017

Winter Fun :)

Hi Kinder Families!  I hope you're enjoying this chilly Sunday as you cheer on my fave football team in the playoffs.  :)  I'm here with a few updates and pictures from the past couple of weeks . . . 

Composing and decomposing numbers:  To precede our work with addition and subtraction, kinders have been working on composing and decomposing numbers to 10.  Composing and decomposing refers to putting together and breaking apart numbers in different combinations.  We played a fun paper snowball fight game where students had to clear their side of the rug of the paper snowballs (10 in all).  After I counted down from 10, each participant had to stop and we recorded how many snowballs were on each side.  This game was a crowd pleaser!  We'll have to play again soon with all the snow that continues to fall!

Practicing tally marks:  In addition to working on combinations of numbers to 10, students continue to work on the correct arrangement of tally marks for quantities in math.  We are working hard on that "1, 2, 3, 4, shut the door" rule!  

Third grade reading buddies:  We finally got to meet our reading buddies from Miss Hubbard's third grade class.  We got to do a fun meet and greet where our big buddy asked us some fun questions in a survey they brought so that we could learn more about each other.  Team 111 is looking forward to reading with our big buddies again this week!

Learning the story of La Galette:  One of our kinder mom's, Mrs. Klunk, came in to teach us the story of La Galette.  The french story bears a strong resemblance to the well-known story of The Gingerbread Man.  We loved acting out the story, learning some words in french, and trying the La Galette cake.  One special tradition of eating the cake is that whoever gets the small porcelin piece (don't worry - visible and not sharp!)  in their piece of cake gets to be the king or the queen for the day.  Look who found the piece in our class! 

Jan Brett books:  January is a great month to study the author/illustrator Jan Brett, as many of her stories carry a winter theme.  We have been learning how to retell stories in detail including all of the following: characters, setting, beginning, middle, and end events.  Our team acted out one of her most popular books, The Mitten.  We will act out another later this week.  :)

As I write this, the Patriots are working on scoring some touchdowns.  So I'm off to continue cheering them onto the Superbowl!  GO PATS!  

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Gingerbread Hunt Recap (and other December things I need to catch up on)

Hello and Happy New Year!

I hope everyone's holiday break was restful, fun, and valuable time with family and friends.  Thank you for your patience in my delay in posting the pictures from our Gingerbread Celebration.  I had every intention of getting a blog post in over break, but it went by so fast and I was savoring time with family :)  I hope you did too!

Most of this post will be LOTS of pictures from the end of our gingerbread study and our fun-filled Gingerbread Man chase that led us around the entire school.  Enjoy!

Password Candy Canes: Making password candy canes during reading centers helped students to practice reading sight words while creating a decorative craft and practicing fine motor skills.  Then I decided to embrace bravery and embellish with glitter!  

Gingerbread Man Bridge Challenge:  After reading several versions of the classic tale, The Gingerbread Man, we brainstormed ways that he could cross the river without relying on the Sly Fox's help.  Students had many inventive ideas.  Since materials for a bridge were easy to come by, students worked in partnerships to design and build a bridge that would support the Gingerbread Man as he made his way across.  This was so neat to watch and could have kept our kinders engaged and creating all morning!  

Here is a list of the other ideas we had for helping the gingerbread man across the river . . . blow him across with a giant fan, build him a boat, build a bridge, help him jump really far, or design a wet suit so he stays dry.

Guest Readers: Our team enjoyed having a couple more guest readers join us to share other versions of The Gingerbread Man with us.  Thank you to all of our guest readers and gingerbread celebration volunteers and donations!

The Great Gingerbread Chase:  Here they are - the pictures from our gingerbread hunt, start to finish.  We were great detectives!

Our first clue led us to Mrs. Ricciardi's room.

Where did he go???

Then down the hall to our 4th grade friend, Miss Allison's room . . . 

Then to the library . . . 

Next we checked in our 3rd grade friend Miss Hubbard's room.

Down the stairs . . . 

To the main office!

Finally back to the kindergarten hallway and into our classroom!

This Week - Making 10:  In math, our number studies have led us all the way to the number 10.  We are currently working on composing and decomposing numbers by putting quantities together and breaking them apart.  This week, we read the book Ten Apples Up On Top by Dr. Suess and created pictures of ourselves balancing 10 apples on top of our heads.  Students worked on writing a combination to 10 based on how many apples of each color they had.

The Week Ahead:  Here are some things we'll be focusing on this week.

  • Continued focus on counting with 1:1 correspondence and composing/decomposing numbers to 10.
  • Working on making our writing pieces the BEST they can be with "5 Star Illustrations" and "5 Star Words."  So far we know that:
    • 5 Star Illustrations tell -
      • Who is in the story
      • Where the story takes place
      • What is happening
      • Have lots of details
      • And Careful Coloring
    • 5 Star Words - 
      • Have spaces between them
      • Are stretched out to hear many sounds
      • Have capital letters where you need them and the rest are lowercase
  • Finger tapping the sounds in CVC (consonant-vowel-consonant words: cat, dog, mop, lip, etc) words to practice reading and spelling using our knowledge of letter sounds
  • Reading grade level text appropriate for each reader in our classroom
  • Revisiting routines and procedures as we continue to get back in the swing of things after a long break
Here's to another great week back!