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 Christmas 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.

   

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! 🙂

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. 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 🙂

Week 9 — Movie Time!

Hello everyone! I hope you all have been enjoying the beautiful weather this weekend! Here is a recap of the past week in Kindergarten:

On Monday, students got to have their pajama day in celebration of their good behavior! We also used this day as an opportunity to celebrate Dia De Los Muertos! Students learned about the holiday in the morning, and even colored their own sugar skulls. Below I linked the two informational videos we watched to help inform us about the holiday. Then in the afternoon, we got together with pre-school and watched the movie Coco together! Students had so much fun learning some new Spanish words during the movie and enjoying some popcorn. Such a fun day!

Jeremiah relaxing during the movie!

https://wqed.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/ket-earlychild-art14/day-of-the-dead/

https://video.link/w/ycOqb

After having Tuesday off, students came back ready to have a great week!

In Math, we finished up Chapter 5 and are now working on 2D shapes, learning number words, and memorizing numbers 11-20. Students have been doing puzzles and building activities to help with their counting. They also learned how to do rainbow writing, to practice familiarizing themselves with number words one, two, and three. On Thursday, they got to practice some 2D shape recognition and sorting review using different colors and sizes of shapes. They had a great time!

In Science this week students learned more about life cycles of different kinds of animals! We learned that many animals lay eggs (just like frogs can) and that when the animals hatch they look different from when they are adults! On the right is a photo of students pretending they are in an egg of their own! We also read the story And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell, the true story about the two male penguins at the Central Park Zoo who raise a baby penguin together. Not only is this a sweet story, but it also details the process of an egg being taken care of by it’s parents before and after it hatches!

Students have been getting very creative during their Free Play, even creating masks!

In Spanish, we are still working on colors! We reviewed the colors we had previously learned by labeling things around the classroom with those colors. Then we played I Spy with the new colors we learned from our Spanish color song! We now know red, blue, yellow, green, purple, black, brown, and white in Spanish!

This week we worked on the letters Dd, Hh, Kk, and Ll. Students have been impressed with their own abilities to come up with so many words for each letter! They even have been noticing the sounds of the certain letters at the ends of words too! We have been watching and listening to letters songs by ABC Mouse and Have Fun Teaching on Youtube to help give students ideas for words that start with the letter they are working on. Their sight words this week were number words, which was helpful in connecting the two subjects.

Below I linked some other videos we used in our classroom this week. We did some more partner yoga and watched a video with facts about turkeys as we started learning about Thanksgiving. We will continue this next week. While doing our black poster painting this week, we watched two videos for stories that we have in our classroom library. One of them is a read aloud of the book Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut by Derrick Barnes, and the other is a short film based on the book Hair Love by Matthew Cherry.

Next week we have Friday off so that teachers can have Professional Development. This week the first quarter ends, and Kindergarten will be getting a new student on Wednesday! We are very excited! I will be sending out a Google Form this week to plan out times for our virtual Parent-Teacher conferences, which will be on Thursday, November 19th. If you have any questions about anything at all, please don’t hesitate to let me know!

 

Love,

Ms. V 🙂

Halloween Week (Number 8), With a Full Moon!

Hello everyone! I apologize in advance for the lack of pictures, my computer is not doing it’s job once again. But hopefully they will be added in soon! (Edit 11/2/2020: They have been added, woohoo!)

In Reading this week, students finished out the alphabet with Xx and Qq! We then reviewed letters Ff and Oo, this time focusing on the sounds they make. Students made big lists with all of the words they could come up with that start with those letters, which is so enjoyable for them. We will make our way through the alphabet once more doing this for each letter. We even addressed that the letter Oo makes more than one sound (because it is a vowel). This can be confusing, so we will continue to review vowels and consonants throughout the year. The high frequency words we did this week were ‘do’, ‘they’, ‘you’, and ‘look’! Students have been becoming experts at matching upper case and lower case letters. I am so impressed with their progress, and pointing out how far they have come in the 30 something days we have been in school makes them get the biggest smile on their face! This month I will begin progress monitoring the students so that we can see some concrete data for their progress in learning letter sounds.

This week in Math students learned about tally marks! They picked up on this concept super quickly. The trickiest part was remembering to do the mark diagonally when we get to 5! This also was a good opportunity to review sorting. On Halloween, students had a fun time doing a Halloween Tally Mark Scavenger Hunt. They had to find the hidden pictures around the room and count the tally marks in the picture, and then write the corresponding number on their paper. It was such a fun challenge! As a reward they got a new red pencil, curtesy of Red Ribbon Week! Next week in Math students will start working on 2D shapes and number words.

In Social Studies we started talking about jobs in our community! Mr. McKay, one of the school’s guidance counselors, has started coming into every classroom once every other week to help teach students about different jobs and how they all impact and are valuable to our community. This fits perfectly with our Social Studies curriculum as we will be discussing this topic until the end of 2020!

Ms. Byron, the other guidance counselor, also came upstairs to have a conversation about feelings and how they can affect our ability to listen.

In Science, students learned about the life cycle of a frog! They were very interested in what the eggs of a frog looked like and why they were so small and squishy, unlike bird eggs. They also were very curious about where a tadpole’s tail goes when it grows into a frog. Next week we will continue to learn about frogs and start learning about the life cycle of other animals and what names we use for different species of baby animals.

We also learned about the color pink this week! While doing our pink poster we watched a read aloud of Pinkalicious by Victoria and Elizabeth Kann.

Students were so, so, so excited about Halloween! They got popcorn and cookies as a Halloween treat and watched The Nightmare Before Christmas. They also received treat goody bags provided by the school. Although it was sad that we couldn’t wear costumes, I hope you all had a fun time enjoying the holiday however you did!

Next week, we have our Pajama Day on Monday, November 2nd! We will also be watching the movie Coco in the afternoon to teach students about the Day of the Dead (a Mexican holiday that honors ancestors who have passed away). Tuesday, November 3rd will be a Flexible Instruction Day because of Election Day. I will send packets home with the students the day before to be completed for credit. The packets must be completed by Friday, November 6th. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out!

Love,

Ms. V

Week 7 Wrapping Up Our ABC Bootcamp!

Hello everyone! This week has been a long one!

This week in Math we continued to work on ordering numbers. We are starting to work on remembering how to count to twenty and beyond, and working on identifying number words. Students used pumpkins to practice putting these numbers in order. They also took a test to evaluate where students were at with their understanding of ordering, and students did great! Next week we will also be introducing tally marks, while building on these previous skills!

We also played a group game to practice these skills. Students loved taking turns and working together to figure out the correct quantity for each number!

In reading this week we did the letters Ff, Uu, Zz, and Ww. They enjoyed these letters because of how similar they look in both upper and lowercase! We are also still working on matching upper and lowercase letters with each other, and working on our handwriting skills. Now that we are nearing the end of the alphabet, we also have been starting to introduce letter sounds. When we are done, we will start over going through the alphabet and focusing solely on the sounds each letter makes. Then we will begin isolating letter sounds in words and putting sounds together to make words!

We also learned the words ‘that’, ‘are’, ‘of’, and ‘see’.  Students worked on identifying these sight words to do some coloring activities. Students have also been practicing  getting exposure to new words that they can try and sound out, and have been enjoying it! It makes them feel so excited and accomplished! Be sure to continue working on the high frequency and sight words that I sent home on Friday. Students memorizing these words will make reading so much easier for them!

In Science we discussed the things that living things need to survive. Students made their own drawings depicting each thing we need. Next, to go along with learning about frogs, we made some charts to write down a list of the things we already know about frogs and the things we are wondering about frogs. We will continue learning about frogs next week, specifically about their life cycle.

For Halloween, we made some spiders to decorate our classroom with! These kind of step by step art projects are great for students to practice following directions. They also got a lot of fine motor skills practice folding the legs for their spiders.

We also discussed in Social Studies the different places kinds of neighborhoods people can live in! We learned the words urban, suburban, and rural. Next we will be working on learning what an address is!

Students have also been working on learning the colors in Spanish. Next week we will start learning some more colors, and practice labeling things in our room! We also did the color purple this week.

We are looking forward to our Halloween party next week — don’t forget that unfortunately we won’t be allowed to wear costumes or have our parade, but we will still get to wear Halloween colors and enjoy a little party in our classroom!

Kindergarten also filled up the jar of stones we collect for good behavior, and decided to use it for a pajama day! This will happen on November 2nd. I will send more information on it next week! I am so proud of them for filling it up so quickly!

Enjoy some photos of students using their scoop chairs and putting on a puppet show performance for me during free play. 🙂

 

Love,

Ms. V

Week 6

Happy Sunday everyone! I hope you’ve been enjoying the cool fall weather! Kindergarten has been loving making observations about the leaves and trees. We even collected some brown and yellow leaves we found at recess!

In their folder on Thursday, students received some Computer homework from Ms. DeBruyn. Please be sure to have them complete it and return it by Tuesday, when they have Computers again!

In Social Studies this week we have been talking about families and homes, and how all families are a little different. We read The Family Book by Todd Parr, and the students were excited to see their own families represented! The following day we reviewed the book, ang thought of some words that we would use to describe our own families. Some of the ones that students came up with were thankful, messy, quiet, silly, and clean! Then students drew a picture of the home they live in and all of the people they live with and wrote a sentence describing their families. This assignment was a practice in patience and not worrying about perfection! Many students wanted to get their pictures juuuuust right. With a little perseverance, they all turned out great and will be kept in the student’s portfolios for everyone to see during conferences!

In Reading this week students focused on the letters Gg, Oo, Vv, and Yy! We talked about grapes, octopus and otters, vampires, and did lots of yoga! As we get closer and closer to finishing our alphabet, we are reviewing some previous letters and starting to introduce some letter sounds. When we finish our alphabet, we will go through it again to focus specifically on the sounds the letters make and not just what they look like! Here are some links to things we watched about animals that start with Oo!

Kindergarten is also starting to learn literary concepts like being able to identify the characters, setting, and events that happen in a story. We did a class book report this week on the book Good Dog, Carl by Alexandra Day. This story was one of my favorites as a child. I love to read it with Kindergarten because there are only two sentences in the whole story — the rest is just told with pictures! It’s very funny, and a great way for students to also learn how pictures can be vital elements to story telling. This is helpful for students who are emerging readers, who sometimes get discouraged when they can’t read the words of a book. They feel like because they “can’t read”, why should they pick up a book? Teaching them the importance of illustrations helps encourage their interest in books, which in turn will help them learn to read more quickly!

We did some partner yoga early on in the week and it was a BIG hit! The students loved working together to do each pose and there were a lot of laughs. We have been doing yoga daily to practice calming our body, practicing balance (a gross motor skill that is important to work on at this age!), and the importance of mindful breathing. Purposeful movement is a great way to help regulate a child’s behavior and have them refocus their minds. Mindful breathing has been especially helpful with teaching students how to calm themselves down when they are upset. We’ve also been practicing being thankful for our bodies and all the amazing things they can do for us!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kindergarten also learned the words ‘me’, ‘for’, and ‘with’. They have been getting really great at spotting these high frequency words all over the place! Be sure to keep practicing those flashcards I sent out, and this week I will send out some more with new words!

In Math, students have been continuing reviewing numbers 6-10 and reviewing the words “before” and “after”.  Because these numbers are a review for our students, we have been using it to practice doing independent work. Kindergarten is where students start doing assignments on their own, without a teacher doing every problem with them. This also helps raise their confidence in their academic abilities, seeing they can do school work on their own! After students complete their packet, I check it over for them and have them correct any mistakes I find. We discuss how mistakes can be good things because they teach us what we can do better next time (working on resiliency)!

In connection to Math AND Halloween, which is quickly approaching, we read a story called A Creepy Countdown! This story was a fun way to practice counting forwards and backwards, and had many spooky characters! Afterwards, we decided to make some ghosts to decorate the door of our classroom! This worked into our learning about the letter Gg that day as well! Kindergarten had a fun time drawing the shape of their ghost, and had some good practice cutting along the squiggly lines. They turned out so cute!

Students are also trying new things during Free Play! We have been encouraging them to try things they might not normally gravitate to by purposefully only having certain games or toys “open” during Free Play. Students love to make things using our Art Cart, including so many sweet pictures and messages for me! They also have enjoyed learning how to play Connect Four! Following the rules is tricky, but they’re getting the hang of it!

I’m looking forward to next week and all the fun things we have planned! As always, please reach out with any questions or concerns!

Love,

Ms. V

Gimme [Week] 5!

Hello everyone! Sorry for the delay on this newsletter. Last week went by so fast! Here’s what we did:

In Science we are continuing talking about the seasons. Students got a chance to review the seasons and learn about why they happen. Then, we looked at different pictures of trees. Trees are a great indicator as to what season we are in. Then, students got to make their own trees for a specific season! We used ink pads, crayons, and even paint to make our trees. Now, they are out in the hallway for everyone to see! Yay!

In Reading, we focused on the letters Nn, Jj, Kk, and Hh. We also learned the words ‘my’, ‘we’, and ‘make’! Students are still working on matching upper and lowercase letters together and rhyming. Next week we will start to learn more about syllables and the sounds that letters make as we get closer to the end of our alphabet! In connection to the letters we learned, we also learned about koalas, kangaroos, jack-o-lanterns (more on that later), hippos, and hammerhead sharks! On Thursday we got to visit Ms. DeBruyn and meet her hamster, Tater Tot! This was a great connection to the letter H and to Science. We discussed how to tell if something is a living creature, which is a topic we will delve into more in the coming weeks. Below are some links to animal videos we watched. These are often watched and discussed during snack time at the end of the day.

On Tuesday, when learning about the letter J, students also learned about Jack-O-Lanterns! Just in time for Halloween! We first listened to this read aloud of the story It’s Pumpkin Day, Mouse! This quick book showed students that Jack-O-Lanterns can have many different facial expressions! We then looked at some photos for inspiration. Then, students were ready to make their own. Using construction paper, pencils, scissors, and glue, students followed step by step directions and made their own Jack-O-Lanterns! They all have a stem, two eyes, a nose, and a mouth! Some used yellow to show how the face would glow when there is a candle inside, others decided to use black instead. Either way, they all turned out so unique and festive! We are looking forward to making more Halloween decorations soon!

The color we learned about this week was green, one of Ms. V’s favorites! Our color posters finally have a home in our classroom: hanging above our Word Wall and collaborative alphabet line!

In Math, we are continuing practicing ordering our numbers (“counting order”) and learning the words “before” and “after”. These are tricky to remember, so we practiced labeling who came before and after people in line to help us! We also are learning the vocabulary “greater than” and “less than”. During Math, students are learning to do their worksheets more independently. We often do problems independently and then come together to check them. Soon we will be learning about tally marks and working on writing numbers 6-10.

We also had a SURPRISE visit from Officer Coffee, and he brought stuffed animals and other toys for our class! They were very excited!

This will be another jampacked week, and I’m excited with all of the progress Kindergarten is making! As always, feel free to reach out if you have any questions or concerns about what your student is doing.

Love,

Ms. V 🙂

Week 4: Short and Sweet!

Hello everyone! I hope you all have had a wonderful week!

Here in Kindergarten we are still getting busy busy with working on colors and letters! The color for this week was yellow, one of my favorites! Students are loving the posters they are making. They’re enjoying seeing the differences between everyone’s handprints, even from one week to the next. They also have noticed that we can look at the posters to see how the color words are spelled! We read a story called Green Is a Chile Pepper (A Book of Colors) to connect our colors with our Spanish lessons, which we started this week.

In Spanish, we are learning a Good Morning Song. We also talked about respecting other languages by not laughing at Spanish words or mocking them by pretending to speak it. Teaching the legitimacy of languages other than English is an important part of students learning to respect people from other cultures.

One skill we have been working on since the first week of school is remembering our days of the week! Some students have picked it up already, but some are still working on it. This is an easy thing to practice at home. Below is a link to the song that we sing at school to remember the days by:

This week we learned about the letters Ii, Cc, Ee, and Dd! Students are getting really good at thinking of words that start with each letter. We made disco balls to put on our desks for the letter D. Some students also got to practice forming letters with their bodies! This was a fun team building activity as well, as they had to work with each other to form the letter as accurately as they could.

                                                         

We learned about iguanas, elephants, and dolphins too! This is one of our favorite parts about learning about each letter: we also get a mini Science lesson! (Hopefully, we can go to the zoo sometime this year to see some of these awesome animals we are learning about!)

For Science, we also read the story Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn by Kenard Pak, which helped provide visuals and explanations as to what happens when we transition from Summer to Autumn. Students have been very focused Weather Watchers! Whenever the weather or temperature changes, they ask if we can update our Weather chart, which we do every morning during our Morning Meeting. Soon I will be changing the job name to Meteorologist to make it more scientifically accurate!

We also added the words ‘he’, ‘have’, and ‘is’ to our Word Wall! Students have been practicing finding the Word Wall words in our Morning Message and in stories that we read together. This week, students are receiving Word Wall words in their folder. These are for you all to cut out and use as flashcards to practice at home! We are still working on rhyming, and next week we are going to start learning about syllables.

In Math, we have been reviewing the vocabulary fewer/fewest and more/most. For the first time, Kindergarten got to use unifix cubes to help us complete an assignment in which we were comparing quantities. Hands on tools help make Math concepts more concrete for students who might struggle with the new vocabulary! We also have been working on writing 0-5 and counting up to 10! We have been doing this by using Math puzzles and playing games like Roll & Color.

Next week I will be sending home October Homework Challenges! I hope everyone enjoys their long weekend. Please be sure to reach out with any questions or concerns, big or small!

Love,

Ms. V 🙂

Week 3 And We’re Feeling Fine!

Another week in the bag for Kindergarten! We are really getting into our curriculum now and students have settled into the classroom routines nicely. They are really enjoying getting to do their jobs in the every week, and are quick to remind each other when they’re slacking (or when I am)! LOL!

In Reading this week we learned about letters Bb, Aa, Rr, and Ll. We also learned the words ‘to’, ‘a’, and ‘like’ and added them to our Word Wall! Students have been practicing identifying these letters and words in books, posters around our room, and in our daily Morning Message. We have started reading some decodable books, full of words from their Word Wall and pictures to help guide them with their reading. Students who see our reading specialists have started to get pulled out so everyone can have even more one on one attention, and everyone is doing great! The DIBELS Reading Assessment was done this week for the students, and soon we will be going over the results to closer identify the areas students struggle with.

Students searching for letters around the room.

In Math, we are practicing writing numbers 0-5 and we introduced the concepts of fewer/fewest and more/most as well as making equal groups. Practicing writing our numbers was definitely a lesson in perseverance for some of us, as some numbers like 3 and 5 can be really tricky! But we’re doing great! Next week students will be evaluated with the DIBELS Math Assessment by Mrs. Michael, and we can see what other areas need to be targeted for each student. We will continue reviewing fewer/fewest and making equal groups next week, as well as doing some problem solving work.

This week we had Ms. Byron, one of our school counselors, come in to our room to talk about listening skills. We went over some ways we can check our body to make sure we are listening –> having a still body, looking eyes, listening ears, and a quiet voice! We also read the story Wordy Birdy by Tammi Sauer this week, which is about a bird who gets herself into a tough situation because she doesn’t listen very well. This helped connect the lesson to why it is so important to listen to others, not just in school but in the real world. Ms. Byron will come in a few more times this year to do lessons similar to this one to help encourage students to learn more about certain social-emotional skills. If a specific student has a skill that needs to be worked on, her and I work closely together to help them with that skill. She is a wonderful resource and we love her visits!

In Science we have begun learning about the 4 seasons! We first did a picture matching game, matching items of clothing we wear to the appropriate season for them. We are also continuing our discussion on the 5 senses, and went on a nature walk to use our senses to see what we could learn about some of the plants around our school! We saw lots vegetables growing in the garden, and we are excited to check back in on them in the future to see how they’re doing! We will also continue to work on learning about the seasons for the next couple of weeks by utilizing stories and a super fun art project.

This week we learned about the color orange. Kindergarten has also been very focused on rhyming any words they can, and they were SHOCKED when they found out that nothing rhymes with orange. We also are working on finding patterns, specifically rainbow patterns! This helps connect our colors to math, and learning about rainbows and how they are created connects them to science as well!

Students have been earning so many tickets for their good behavior individually, and they have been thoroughly enjoying the rewards that come along with it! Students have joined me for lunch, utilized flexible seating, taken bubbles out to recess, brought in toys from home to share with friends, and we even had one friend earn the 10 ticket prize of having a day of no shoes in the classroom! We also are continuing earning stones for good behavior as a class so we can earn some sort of party as a prize. Students suggested a pajama party or a pizza party, so we will take a vote on that soon. We have filled the jar up about halfway already, so it will be happening sooner rather than later! 🙂

Next week, we have a 4 day week due to a teacher in-service training on Friday. Thank you to everyone who has donated some snacks to our classroom, it is a huge help to me! As always, please reach out to me with any questions or concerns you have. Talk soon!

Love,

Ms. V