January 9, 2013
Happy 2013! I hope everyone is staying healthy and that resolutions are in full swing. Your children came back from vacation eager and ready to learn. It may not seem that way at home but I have to say that all workshops (Reading, Writing, and Math) continue to run smoothly and every one of the kids surprised me with their personal best writing pieces last week. I was so proud! I keep telling them that they are beginning to dive into First Grade work. Of course that brings instant smiles to their cute little faces. We are beginning a new unit on sea creatures that will incorporate all subject areas for the next couple of months. I have been working closely with my Kindergarten colleagues at SCS and from around the district for the past five Teacher In-Service days studying the new Common Core State Standards. As Kindergarten teachers at SCS, we had the opportunity to develop a common unit about Sea Creatures that connects science and technology with math, reading, and writing standards from the new Common Core Standards. Your children will be reading and writing about creatures of the sea. They will be learning what it means to be a specialist about a creature topic of their choice and will be writing "Specialist" books about their topics. They will be working with the Art and Music teachers to help inspire them to create and sing about this exciting topic. Our Bridges in Mathematics Program already used sea creatures as the manipulative the children used to dive into higher number recognition, addition concepts, and other fun math games. Math is where the sea creature topic came from and we were able to creatively design a unit that the children are VERY EXCITED to dive into! We have a very fun end of unit celebration scheduled for the end of February for both our Journey and TreeHouse teams. Be on the lookout for some fun activities coming home in the upcoming days!
Yesterday was Hands On Nature and the topic was very interesting. It began with a puppet show that had local wild animals as the characters. The children explored the differences between herbivores, carnivores, and omnivores. They observed real skulls and teeth to determine what type of animal they belonged to. With a teaching snack during the lesson and an art project where they created their own animals using the outline of a skull later in the day, the lesson was truly a wonderful learning experience for the children. Here are a few photos of the experience.
On February 6th, the Kindergarten students will be singing some songs and doing some dances as part of SCS's traditional Kindergarten Concert. This year, all of the Kindergarten classes are inviting parents back to our class spaces as part of an Open House. There will be a scavenger hunt to work through as your child shows you the classroom. A big part of the Open House will be for you to come and play some of the fun math games with your child that are part of our Bridges in Mathematics math program. So, please save this date and time. More information will come home this Friday as well as a note from our Math Coordinator, John Madden, detailing some new cool ways to talk about math with your child. Please be sure to let me know if you cannot make it to these events on February 6th. It will be a lot of fun!