Finally Done With February

Hello everyone!

I hope you all had a lovely weekend! Kindergarten had an awesome week, let’s look back at what we did!

In Math Kindergarten has started skip counting by 2s. Below is a fun video we watched to get them more familiar with it, it’s a tricky skill! being able to look at all of the numbers and visualize actually skipping over the odd numbers will make it easier.

We also have begun our subtraction chapter! At first, Kindergarten wanted to keep adding and had some trouble understanding that we were switching gears and now taking things away. But they soon got the hang of it! We have been using the vocabulary “take away”, “take apart”, “minus”, and “subtract”. During centers this week, they got to practice counting higher numbers and use white boards with me to practice writing these higher numbers correctly. We also got to bring out the flexible seating options while we did one of our worksheets!

In reading we have been doing lots of hands on activities this week, which is why you probably noticed there were not many worksheets sent home for this subject! Students have been using whiteboards, puzzles, our SmartBoard, and have done some projects to strengthen our skills! The whiteboards have been helpful in connect the sounds students here to text, students have to write the word first and then decode it. We reviewed our sight words by being given two choices and then circling the sight word I asked for! Students have begun to start sounding out words that have 4 different sounds in them. This will be a challenge, but they have been doing so well with three sound words that I have no doubts they will be able to rise to the challenge. I did some progress monitoring for them, and I’m so proud of the progress they have been making!

Students also created their own ABC puzzle tournament during Morning Work time! They finished their work early and split into teams to see who could finish their respective puzzle faster. It was awesome to see them creating this moment for teamwork and healthy peer competition all on their own.

If you’d like to have your students practice their syllables (which we do usually as an exit ticket or a time filler), here’s a funny video that helps explain it and can give you some ideas for words to have them clap out!

Syllables! | Scratch Garden – YouTube

In Science we started talking about the planets! We read a book about Mae Jemison, the first black woman to go to space, and students were extremely fascinated by the job of astronauts! We started with the book The Sun is Kind of A Big Deal. This introduced the students to the concept of the solar system — they learned about the planets and even a song from my childhood to help remember them, what the Sun does for us, and how the Earth moves! We used one of our bouncy balls from the Cozy Corner to be the Sun and the students got to take turns pretending to be the Earth and the Moon, it was a lot of fun to see them try to spin in time with each other! We also read a book called So That’sย  How the Moon Changes Shape! by Allan Fowler which explains the moon phases and had lots of photographs of the moon that the students enjoyed. We then made two lists about what we know about the Sun and the Moon to compare and contrast the two and got to spend time reading other books from our classroom library about space. It’s been fun to let the students guide the direction of this topic and I’m interested to see how we further our learning about space!

Here’s the planet song we learned, it’s from Blues Clues!

Blues Clues – Planet Song Music Video! By Hanksterman/Merry Xmas Everyone! – YouTube

This week we had another OperaTots lesson. This time, students got to do it together on the carpet, and we did lots of dancing! We will be taking a little break but the next time we join Ms. Emily we will be watching the opera!

Students were so excited that we got to have recess outside almost every day this week. It’s been so long, but the fresh air was much needed!

We also read the story My Mouth Is A Volcano by Julia Cook, which teaches students why it’s not polite to yell out and interrupt others when they’re speaking and offers strategies to help practice keeping our voices off until it is our turn. Now when I hear students try to yell out, I remind them that their “volcano is erupting” and that we need to fix that!

Please don’t forget to have your student complete their homework that is in their yellow folders (due on Friday), and be sure to check out all of the information in the Keep At Home side of the folder! There is information about lunch, the pepperoni roll fundraiser, and more.

Your student might have informed you that I am going to start gradually decreasing the frequency they get snack in order for them to get accustomed to not having it. Next year in first grade, they only receive snack when the school provides their fruit or vegetable snack a couple times a week! It’s crazy to think about but we are getting so close to the end of the school year!

Love,

Ms. V ๐Ÿ™‚

 

 

A Short and Snowy Week In February

Happy Sunday! I hope everyone is having a lovely weekend.

Here is a recap of how our week went!

In reading this week we are still practicing middle and ending sounds. We did some puzzles to put together words that had short i sounds, long e, and short e sounds! We are practicing decoding (a fancy word for “sounding out”) words more and more, and students got to pair up and practice reading some sentences to each other from their reading workbooks. They love helping out if someone gets stuck, and this positive encouragement and help from peers can help build confidence and engagement! Now that students know all of their sounds we are working on them being able to apply this knowledge and do it quickly! The goal is to have them reading automatically. Drilling the letter sounds and sight words at home will make this easier!

We also did another class book report, but decided to combine it with Social Studies! We are still learning about “the past”, so we read a story about Jackie Robinson. This was our first book report on a non-fiction story, so it looked a little different than usual. But Kindergarten gave all of the information needed because they were really into this story! They loved that Jackie Robinson played many sports, and they were inspired by his ability to make “good choices”, as we call them in our classroom, even in the face of adversity. Talking about Jackie Robinson even inspired a conversation about women’s rights back when he was alive! A student asked, “How come there were no girls playing baseball?” We had an honest discussion about this, and I told them that in the future we will be learning about some famous black female athletes as well. I am so proud of how perceptive they are and how they challenge these stories!

In Math we are finishing up our chapter on addition! Students had a couple of “projects” (aka, assignments that are a multiple step process and require more time) that had to do with addition, including doing a multistep color by numbers and using manipulatives to complete a cut and paste addition sentence making ten. We are still reviewing numbers 11 to 100, and students are getting better and better at writing these bigger numbers correctly! We did a lot of fun counting games and even did a worksheet to practice identifying higher numbers correctly.

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Here is a link to a great skip counting video you can watch at home for practice!

Students also had TWO visits from the school guidance counselor, Ms. Byron! They learned about how to be assertive, confident, and direct when asking for something or telling the truth about something that happened. They also practiced identifying feelings through facial expressions and body language! These are both two important social-emotional skills that we will continue to work on on our own. On Friday we had our second OperaTots session! Students learned the plot of the opera they are going to see, and learned some theater vocabulary like stage, audience, curtain, etc. They even got to look at different pictures of different kinds of theaters and stages! They of course got to dance and sing quite a bit as well.

Be sure to have your student submit their homework (the dominos addition page) by next Friday. I am looking forward to next week and all of the fun new things we will do!

Love,

Ms. V

A Week Full of Celebrations

Hello everyone!ย  I hope you enjoyed your Valentine’s Day, and are enjoying your day off today!

Last week was fun and a little bit crazy, let’s check out what we did!

One thing Kindergarten has been consistently working on since learning about short and longs vowel sounds is the silent e! When there is a silent e at the end of the word, it makes the vowel in the middle “say it’s name” (aka, a long vowel sound!). Here is a fun song that can help students remember the difference.

On Monday, students read the story Jack B. Ninja by Tim McCanna. This story is about a kid who goes on a ninja mission, only to find out the bad guys were his family in disguise just to give him a birthday surprise! This story was a rhyming story, and is a play on the nursery rhyme Jack Be Nimble. After we read the story, students then had to look at pictures from the story and put them in the order that they happened in the story. This sequencing activity tests student’s comprehension skills. We also did an activity where we had to name the characters in the story and then write who they are. I have been pushing Kindergarten to work on their sentence writing more and more, as I want them to have lots of experience with this before first grade! Even if they are not spelling every word correctly, it gives me insight into what sounds they are hearing in a word and how their brain is connecting the sounds to the letters. It also encourages their creativity! An easy way to encourage this at home is to have students write a sentence of their own either about a story they read together or give them a random word to use in a sentence!

We have also been working on finding some new fun ways to review some old skills! Working on letter sounds and matching upper and lowercase letters by making a game out of it, and taking our workbooks to the floor to practice decoding or reading words. We are still reviewing vowels and the different sounds they make, and we will soon be moving from words with 3 sounds to words with 4 sounds! We also are continuing working on writing sentences independently, which includes having Kindergarten students “build” words on their own!

On Wednesday we celebrated Mikel’s sixth birthday! It was very exciting and we had a great time listening to some dance music, making cards for him, and eating ice cream after he shared his adorable baby pictures.

Also on Wednesday, we got to have our first session with a program called OperaTots! STBCA has partnered with the Pittsburgh Opera to do their special virtual program. Students used their tablets to join Ms. Emily on Zoom, and she taught them about what an opera is, sang some songs with us, and introduced us to the opera that students are going to be able to see in a couple months at the end of the program.

On Thursday we celebrated our 100th day of school! We dressed up and did some super fun activities like reading stories about the 100th day of school, practicing writing to 100, and making bracelets to practice our skip counting to 100 by tens!

Students built things using 100 popsicle sticks…

And they also came up with ideas of what they would do if they had $100! Some of their ideas were so creative! This was also some good reading practice.

Kindergarten also had some incredible costumes, they really hit the nail on the head! LOL!

In Social Studies this week, as we continue to learn about the past, present, and future, we learned about Ruby Bridges! Students were fascinated with her bravery and that she is still alive today! We read the children’s version of her autobiography.

On Friday, we celebrate Valentine’s Day! Students made valentines for you, their parents, and got some special treats! They also made Get Well Soon cards for their classmate Sydney who has been sick for the past week or so. We hope she returns soon! Also a special shout out to Reid’s grandmother who made cute Valentine’s Day masks for the whole class. They are lovely. ๐Ÿ™‚

It was a fun-filled and exciting week! I’m looking forward to this one being just as great.

Love,

Ms. V ๐Ÿ™‚

 

 

Catholic School’s Week!

Hello everyone!

I hope everyone had a good weekend! I apologize for this being late. Here’s what we did last week during out short Catholic School’s week!

Monday we had a snow day, and Tuesday (even though there was a delay) was class color day! Kindergarten was yellow, one of my favorites! Some students let me take photos of them in their favorite spot — the gym. We have been having recess in the gym for a while due to the weather, and Kindergarten is making the most of it.

In Math we are continuing to practice our adding! Students have been doing these worksheets independently, as so many of them are doing so well with where we are at with addition. We continue to practice counting up to 100 and working on being able to tell the difference between larger numbers. On Wednesday it was Red, White, and Blue day and we got to play some Bingo! This was a great way to practice recognizing larger numbers in a fun way! We had many winners, most of them took home some candy prizes!

This week we have been brushing up on some old skills, and trying to work on making students more automatic with their letter recognition and letter sounds so they can use these schools quickly and effectively when reading! We did a lot of small group work and utilized games, whiteboards, and other manipulatives! We also are continuing to work on our sentence writing. Students were given notebooks to keep in their desk where they can practice sentence writing, making sure they have nice handwriting, proper spacing, capitalization, and punctuation! We will be reading stories about how the past is different than the present (and the future!) which ties in nicely to Social Studies. We also have been enjoying using our tablets. They got to not only play games but also listen and read along with some virtual books!

It was lovely getting to speak to you all during Parent-Teacher Conferences! Students enjoyed having a half-day, and I enjoyed being able to brag a little bit about how wonderful this class is.

Friday morning we had Mass, and in the afternoon we had our movie day! We got to watch The Princess and The Frog and eat popcorn. Yum!

I sent out an email earlier today detailing some events going on this week, but we will be celebrating the 100th Day of School, Mikel’s birthday, my birthday, and Valentine’s Day this week! It will be a hectic but very exciting week in Kindergarten, so stay tuned!

 

Love,

Ms. V ๐Ÿ™‚

 

Wrapping Up January!

Hello everyone! I hope you take advantage of this three day weekend!

Here are our hallway decorations! We have our collaborative flowers on either end of our self-portraits. We use this to enforce the idea that we are all unique and special, but this is what makes our community so beautiful! Can you spot which one is your student’s portrait? Which one is their flower?

In Reading this week, we worked on the letter Uu vowel sound! Here is a video to go over the different sounds the Uu makes!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yWiRgOuaS84

I also have another video for you all to watch together at home, so you can practice the vowel sounds at home as well!

We are continuing working on ending and middle sounds. This week we focused on words that end with Tt and Pp. One big activity students did was cutting out pictures and putting them on a chart to sort them by Tt, Dd, and Pp ending sounds. We also did some small group work to focus on the individual skills that some students need!

On Thursday we got some time to play our File Folder games, which also work on ending sounds, beginning sounds, and letter recognition. A fun way to review these skills!

Another exciting tool we got to use is the tablets! Students all have their own tablets that stay in their desks. The tablets have a few apps downloaded that we will be using for centers and/or independent work. We might even use them as a prize in the future! This week students got to go on Khan Academy Kids (an app I very much recommend for everyone to use at home) for some letter recognition and letter sound practice, and with Mr. McKay they used Everfi which is a website that combines Social Studies and Reading skills!

This week we read a story called How Anansi Got His Stories and Mosni Can Help, which are two different folktales. The former is from West Africa and the latter is from Mexico. We talked about how folktales help teach kids important life lessons, and they are told to the communities over time. We also watched another Anansi story on Youtube, which I linked below!

In Math, we are continuing working on addition vocabulary. We have been using terms like “in all”, “altogether”, “put together”, “add”, etc. We also have been working on some additional math skills, like transposing numbers (flipping the numbers around, being able to tell the difference between 32 and 23 for example), subitizing (being able to count groups of objects quickly) and identifying numbers 11-20. We used cubes to help practice identifying numbers and showing it with quantities, which students love to use to build! We also played a game where I would say a number and students would have to come to the board and circle the number I asked. This helps with transposing numbers and making sure that we are listening to the names of numbers. This is an easy skill to practice at home as well! And continue practicing counting all the way up to 100 at home!

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Students also got to meet the new baby gerbils that are in middle school! They were so cute and little. We tied this into our continuing discussion on mammals. We also watched an episode of a show on Netflix called, If I Were An Animal. This show has real videos of animals and teaches students different aspects of how they survive in the wild. I totally recommend it for you all to enjoy at home!

The Museum of Kindergarten is looking beautiful! We have a wide range of art in there right now. Thank you to Sola, Matilda, Jalija, and Sydney for their art!

This week we also celebrated our first birthday in the classroom! Matilda turned six! We had ice cream with syrup and sprinkles, made cards for her that included some of her favorite things, and she got to do a special show and tell of some baby pictures of her! Students loved asking her questions about the pictures and what her life was like when she was little.

This week Gregory made a much anticipated return from vacation. We also received a new student who had previously been in virtual school, Sydney! While we were very sad to say goodbye to our friend Brandon, who will be doing virtual school, we are also excited to explore the new dynamic in our classroom with our new friend.

Next week is Catholic School’s week, and every day we will be doing something new! Be sure to check the Option C flyer that was sent out with more details.

Monday: Pittsburgh Dress Down Day

Tuesday: Class Color Day (Yellow for Kindergarten)

Wednesday: Red, White, and Blue Dress Down

Thursday: STBCA Day

Friday: Pajama Day

 

Also, don’t forget that there is homework for your student to complete in their folder! They have until next Friday to complete it.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Love,

Ms. V ๐Ÿ™‚

Ms. V Has Lost Track of What Week It Is!

Hi everyone!

I hope your weekend is going smoothly. Let’s recap what happened during this short week in Kindergarten!

Students got to do a lot of independent work this week due to having so many assessments still going on. I’m proud of the way they have been getting better at focusing even when I am not leading them, and trying their best before relying on me for guidance. They also have been great at watching out for each other and keeping each other in check, which is equal parts adorable and helpful!

In Reading this week we have been working on the letter Ii vowel sounds, both long and short! We had to rush things a little bit due to having an unexpected day off this week, but they handled it like pros! We did some more assessments for ELA called Skill Inventories. We will keep focusing on isolating ending and middle sounds in words, but they have been doing great with blending sounds to figure out what a short word is after sounding it out. Please keep having them practice reading on their own any books you have at home! Even just reading to them, pointing to each word as you read it, helps them catch on to many phonics concepts. Students are working on refreshing their memory of word wall words and using them in sentences! Be sure to also keep practicing have them name individual letters at home, and then saying the sound. We don’t want them to lose any skills while they learn new ones!

Here’s a song to listen to/dance to/learn to at home:

In Math we focused on breaking apart numbers 8, 9, and 10! Students are definitely starting to get the hang of this, with the help of some handy dandy counting cubes! We had our DIBELS Math assessment this week. Most students did great, and this is tricky because each part of the assessment is only one minute long. Some things students can work on at home, regarding their Math skills, are working on counting on from numbers other than 1 (have them start at 5 or 12!) and work on recognizing numbers 20 and higher! Double digit numbers can be very confusing, so the more practice the better. I’m excited to start doing some more small group work with them in Math so make sure everyone is on the same page. Math centers are some of my favorites!

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In Religion we are still continuing our lessons about how we are all made perfectly in God’s image, and to illustrate that we did self-portraits of ourselves! Students had to follow step by step instructions in order to make sure the portrait was large enough to be seen well on the paper and that the coloring was done correctly. They all turned out so beautiful, it was wonderful to see students make positive observations about themselves! These will be hung up in our hallway alongside the flowers they made.

In Science this week, we read the story What Do You Do With A Tail Like This? which shows different body parts of different animals and explains why that part is unique and important to that animal. We had fun picking out the mammals featured in the book!

If you haven’t heard, Kindergarten has been FASCINATED by the ice on the playground! They love to pick up big chunks and watch it melt due to their body heat. They also love to try and break the chunks of ice by stepping on them. We’ve had many scientific conversations about the weather, temperature, states of matter, and more just based on them playing outside. It’s so enriching when their learning comes from natural experiences!

We are so close to filling up our classroom behavior jar and earning another class-wide prize!! Students have submitted some ideas as possible prizes, and once they are approved by Mrs. Michael we will vote on one of the prizes. Keep an eye out for what that may be!

Here are some silly pictures that made me laugh this week. Kindergarten is exhausting, but they always keep the days interesting!

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I also just want to say that I am so, so thankful for this wonderful and amazing group of kids. Every day they make me smile and laugh, and show me so much love. Getting to be their teacher makes the hard times so much easier. So thank YOU parents, for raising such incredible little people! Keep up the good work!

Love,

Ms. V ๐Ÿ™‚

Hello 2021!

Hello again everyone!

I am so glad to be back in Kindergarten. I missed all of the students so much.ย  Last week they were with our building substitute, Mrs. Ketchum. She was so impressed with their behavior, and they were great helpers to her. I am so proud!

This week we are jumping right back into the nitty gritty! We had our DIBELS assessments this week. Everyone has been making great progress! We are currently learning the differences between vowels and consonants, and the difference between a long vowel and a short vowel. This week we worked on the letter Aa, and differentiating between the short and the long sounds it makes! We have been practicing isolating every sound in a word, and picking out a sound that is either in the middle or at the end of a word. For their homework this week, they have to learn the word ‘little’ which we will be adding to our Word Wall. Please be sure to practice their flashcards that I sent home as well!

Last week with Mrs. Ketchum, Kindergarten did a class book report on the book The Water Princess by Susan Verdie. This story is about supermodel Georgie Badielโ€™s childhood, and her dreams of bringing clean drinking water to her African village.

In Math, we have started learning how to break apart numbers. This is the foundation for adding and subtraction, breaking apart numbers into two groups in different combinations. This week we focused on breaking about numbers 2-7, and next week we will do more numbers. Then we will start doing some addition! This is one of my favorite things to teach in Math, and I’m so excited to see Kindergarten catch on to these concepts! Once they get the hang of it, they truly blossom. This is also quite easy to practice at home!

In Science this week and last, Kindergarten learned about the differences between different kinds of animals — starting with mammals! We read a story about squirrels this week, and we talked about how we know they are mammals because of their fur, their legs, their ears, and the fact that they have babies!ย  The story, The Secret Life of Squirrels, is fictional. But the author took real pictures of squirrels, which the students got a big kick out of. Then we did an activity afterwards in which we made an obstacle course to complete, and reviewed positional words like ‘around, under, next to’ etc. Students had so much fun! I’ll send a video of them completing the course in an email.

In Religion this week, we read the book I Am Perfectly Designed by Karamo Brown and his son Jason “Rachel” Brown. The story is like a conversation between the father and son, and the father is letting his son know that he was born perfect, just the way he is! We had a conversation about how we are all made perfect the way we are, in God’s image. We also went around and said one thing that we like about ourselves. Some notable comments were, “I like that I’m talented!” and “I like that I’m intelligent!” These positive affirmations are important to build self-confidence, even at a young age. Afterwards we designed our own parts of a flower which will be used for a collaborative art piece this week. We noted that everyone’s flowers are unique and different, but they are all beautiful in their own way. Just like us!

In Social Studies this week we learned about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. We read the book below, and watched some videos about his life!

We also listened to this story written by his son and what is was like for him growing up.

Throughout the rest of the year in Social Studies we will continue to talk about famous historical figures and the past, present, and future.

Students have also been practicing controlling their voices during class time. Please remind them how important it is to remember there is a time and a place for everything!

Have a wonderful long weekend!

Love,

Ms. V ๐Ÿ™‚

A Short December!

Hello everyone! The past two weeks were so fun and jam packed with Christmas activities. Since it was a short time being back at school I figured it made the most sense to just consolidate the newsletters!

We made some beautiful Christmas trees which decorated our hallway! Students loved using the glitter and all of their trees turned out beautifully. I hope they are decorating your home now!

We also did another class book report with the story Melrose and Croc A Christmas to Remember by Emma Chichester Clark. This story was sweet and sentimental, and really encompasses the true meaning of Christmas.

We also read this English and Spanish Christmas story. Students were excited to learn how to say Merry Christmas in Spanish, and we even listened and danced to “Feliz Navidad”! We also used My Merry Christmasย to help introduce the concept of fact vs. fiction. The story is about animals who decorate and prepare for Christmas. Students were able to understand that this is not something that would really happen, so it is made up or fiction! This is a concept we will continue working on in the new year!

In reading we went over the words ‘where’, ‘was’, and ‘said’, and we did the letters Jj, Xx, Qq, Nn, Cc, Vv, and Ii. Students played lots of games to practice isolating sounds in words. We are now focusing on ending and middle sounds, as students have almost mastered beginning sounds. A fun way to do that is to match pictures with similar beginning, middle, or ending sounds. But be sure to review this skill over Christmas break so it doesn’t get lost!

Students practiced reading a few different decodable stories this week, and some even got the chance to practice reading to each other! We also are working on sentence building and using correct spacing, capitalization, etc. One way we remember these things is by using our fingers as a “finger space” in between words. You’ll see more of this in students’ packets for their Flexible Instruction Days!

Students did a fun graphing activity during Math centers where they got cards at random and had to fill out the graph to match the information on the card. They used Christmas erasers as counters and had to check each other’s graphs!

In Math we have been talking about 3D shapes and counting past 10! Students got to use blocks as manipulatives to help learn the different kinds of 3D shapes. They also got to try out a geoboard for the first time and use rubber bands to make their own shapes. They loved experimenting with this and making their own unique shapes!

This past Friday, students enjoyed Polar Express day at school! They got to visit different classrooms with different grades and do many fun activities. We then watched the movie in the afternoon with first grade. At the end of the day they got to go out and enjoy the snow! We used it as a chance to talk about where snow comes from and why we salt the roads and sidewalks/what the salt does.

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Another memorable moment from the past two weeks was that we played a fun game of Memory Match during Free Play! This is a great way to enhance student’s memory skills, and even just having them practice following directions and taking turns. Having them practice playing games like this without my guidance also fosters independence! They had a lot of fun! Also on Friday, students got to watch a presentation done by StepAfrika, a dance organization that educates and teaches children about stepping! They really enjoyed trying to do it on their own. It was so fun to watch them! I will attach a video them dancing in an email for you all to see!

Please don’t forget to complete the Flexible Instruction packets for students for Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. If you need help with any of the packets please let me know! And you can always refer back to the email I sent out with details on some of the specific packets and what they contain. I hope you all have a safe and enjoyable holiday. Talk to you all in the new year!

 

Love,

Ms. V

Week 11 – Holidays Are Upon Us!

Hello everyone! It was so lovely to meet you all this week. Sorry for the delay in posting this. Let’s get into it!

This past week was a crazy one! Students had Steeler Dress Down Day on Monday, and we also kicked off the week doing some activities to practice listening for the beginning sounds in words. We then did this with ending sounds as well. Students looked at a group of pictures and paired up the pictures with the same beginning (or ending) sound. They had a lot of fun and this prepared them well for another game we played later on in the week! This week we learned about the letter sounds for Ww, Ss, Ee, and Yy. Some of these are tricky — Ee is a hard vowel because many people say it differently based on their dialect. Students often confuse Yy for a Uu sound, and students don’t understand why Ww is called “double u” if it doesn’t make that sound. LOL!

Kindergarten got to play some ABC Bingo this week, but now we have changed the rules a little bit to make it more challenging: they have to listen for the sound and then figure out the letter that makes that sound on their own and see if it’s on their bingo card! They love this challenge! Then, we also played a Thanksgiving word game. Students had to tell me what the picture they got was, listen to the sounds in the word, figure out what letters made those sound, and find the word on the plate! It was lots of fun and students even got to work collaboratively when they needed help. Having them learn from each other makes it all the more enjoyable! Students are still working on finding sight words and high frequency words in their morning message! Be sure to continue practicing these words during the next two weeks.

Shapes and patterns, shapes and patterns! Students have been very focused on this this week! They learned about pattern rules, which help us determine what the pattern is and how to continue it. The patterns we worked on this week all contained shapes. We also did a group activity to help us talk about how some 2D shapes can come together to create new shapes! We used our pattern blocks to help us complete our worksheets. Students had to use some trial and error to figure the answers out, but were very engaged so that didn’t bother them too much! ๐Ÿ™‚

On Friday afternoon, students went for a Shape Scavenger Hunt! We took a walk around the school to try and mark all of the different shapes we could see outside. Students found many, many, many rectangles but also were surprised to find a few triangles in some unexpected places like the church building and on some signs around school! It was a nice way to get some fresh air too!

As we prepared for Thanksgiving, students were learning as much as we could about the holiday! We made bracelets as jewelry and talked about how Native Americans make jewelry out of gems and stones and other materials they find in nature! We read some books about Native American history, including D is for Drum.ย Students learned about Squanto, the Native American who helped some pilgrims learn the way of the land here in America. We also listened and danced to Native American music!

Students also got to watch A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, just because it’s one of Ms. V’s favorites! And we even did some Thanksgiving yoga, which you can do below:

On Friday students were sent home with their folder that contained all of the packets needed for Flexible Instruction for the next two weeks! If you need any help or have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out. Now is also a great time to utilize the November Homework Challenges, which can be found on this website if you need to look at them again! Also be sure to check out SeeSaw to see what the Gym teacher is posting for Kindergarten, and to try out the typing and coding sites recommended by the Technology teacher (there is a paper for this in your student’s folder as well).

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Love,

Ms. V

Week 10 — A New Friend!

Hello to all! I hope you have been having a safe and fun weekend! Let’s recap our week in Kindergarten:

In Math we have started working on 2D shapes! Recognizing the shapes is mostly review for Kindergarten, but creating the shapes on their own is a newer skill they are working on. We started by using popsicle sticks to help create squares and rectangles of different sizes! Students would have to use a certain number of sticks to create the shape, and by adjusting the number of sticks they could use students had to really think about maintaining the formation of the shape. Students also have been using pattern blocks and playdoh for more hands-on experience with shapes. They even learned about the hexagon this week! We are still reviewing ordering of numbers, number words, and counting up to 20!

In Reading this week, students did letters Gg, Aa, Tt, and Bb. Our word wall words were ‘four’, ‘five’, and ‘here’. Students have been practicing identifying the first sound in words, rhyming, and putting sounds together to make words. Mrs. Etzel, the reading specialist, has been coming into our classroom additionally to help students with their skills! We have been using puzzles to help connect pictures of letters to sounds. We also read the story Julian Is A Mermaid by Jessica Love, and identified the different parts of the story! I highly suggest watching this read aloud of it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sNjGIgpNk8k

This week, students made turkeys and wrote on the feathers what they are thankful for! Students had so much fun following the step by step directions to make these. Next week, we will learn more about the holiday of Thanksgiving and the Native Americans. Students also made fall trees in their Art class with Ms. Dowe. These beautiful trees are hanging up across from the office! We learned about the color brown this week as well, and we have completed our classroom rainbow! I will post a photo of it next week!

Ms. Byron, our school guidance counselor, came into our classroom to teach Kindergarten about “self-talk”. “Self-talk” is a tool students can use to help keep them focused when being asked to follow directions. Repeating the directions to themselves can help them stay on task, especially when there are multiple directions to follow! Mr. McKay also visited and had students do a self-evaluation to see what kind of things they might want to do in the future!

Students also got their own bags full of supplies to keep at home. This will be helpful for our Flexible Instruction Day packets. Students will get to different activities at home with these materials!

This week we had a new student join us who had previously been doing virtual learning. Students were very excited to meet him, and have been so helpful and kind with helping him get adjusted. We’re so excited to have him be a part of our classroom family!

And here is a photo of Jeremiah experimenting with magnets, sticking them onto some paper clips, during Free Play!

Please be sure to send back your response on the parent-teacher conference times. I am so excited to meet you all! Let me know if there is anything you need!

Love,

Ms. V ๐Ÿ™‚