classroom newsletters

Classroom newsletters will be posted on this website informing you about what we have been doing and about upcoming events.
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HAPPENINGS FOR SEPT. 11-15,2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
We learned the rhyme/song, "This Old Man". We identified the rhyming words and learned the hand motions to act it out. We read the poem,"Kids in the Tub". We found some uppercase and lowercase letters in the poem, distinguishing between the 2 types of letters. We also found the rhyming words (tub/scrub, knee/be). We generated more words that rhymed with "knee/be". We played the game, alpha-ball. This game requires each student to say the next letter in sequence as we pass a koosh ball around the circle. In literature we read the book Yo! Yes! and discussed how one boy was trying to encourage an other boy (who was shy) to play with him. We shared how the first boy was being kind to try to get the other boy to play. We read the books, What's Under You Hood, Orson? and We Are All Alike, We Are All Different, and discussed how there are some characteristics that we share but there are others that are different. We shared the importance of getting to know each other and not to rely on how others look as we make friends. We read, Down by the Bay, and identified the rhyming words. In writers' workshop we brainstormed why we come to school and what we will learn this year. Then we each decided on a hope/dream that we would like to accomplish this year. We illustrated the poem, "Kids in the Tub", for our poetry binder.
MATH
We made an attendance stick and learned how the stick should match the number of students in Room 104 on a given day. We compared our stick on Friday to the stick that parents had made at Curriculum Night. We found out that there were more parents than students in our class on Friday. We also figured out that there were 3 more parents than students based on comparing the 2 sticks. We explored various manipulatives: junk boxes, ceramic tiles, and transportation manipulatives with tiles. We shared what we noticed or learned from the materials. We read the book, Ten Black Dots, and took turns counting the dots for each picture.
SCIENCE
We observed our monarch caterpillars! We shared what we noticed about the caterpillars. Then we brainstormed some questions we had about monarch caterpillars and butterflies. The caterpillars live in a netted cage.
CHOICE TIME
We opened the block area and learned what kinds of building materials are available. At the art table we are painting pictures with water colors. At the collage table we are creating a strip collage. At the math table we are using pattern blocks in frames, either a triangle or hexagon shape.

We celebrated Tory's birthday! We read her favorite book, The Midnight Unicorn.

EXTRA

Forms: Please send in "My Child as a Learner" and "Information about My Child" forms this week. Thank you if you have already done so.

​Picture Day​: Fri., Sept. 29. Please send in the picture form prior to this day.
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HAPPENINGS FOR SEPT. 4-8, 2017

We had 2 great first days of school! These first 6 weeks of school will focus on learning the routines and expectations, getting to know each other and becoming comfortable in the classroom. Below are some activities and learning we did.

LANGUAGE ARTS
We learned the chants, 'Boom Chicka Boom' and 'Mumbo Jumbo'. 'Boom Chicka Boom' is an echo chant where students echo the words that the teacher says. We used different voices to read the chant. For 'Mumbo Jumbo' we added hand motions to match the syllables of the words. In literature we read the book, Franklin Goes to School and discussed how Franklin felt at the beginning of the book and the end. We learned about some things we'll do in Kindergarten this year based on a "letter" from last year's Kindergarten class. We also read A Porcupine Named Fluffy and discussed the importance of knowing each other's names and being respectful of their names, ie, not making fun of another's name. We also shared that it's important to know how to pronounce someone's name. During morning meeting we began to learn each other's names when we said the greeting. We shared our favorite animal and food. We read the morning message.
MATH
We read the book, First Day Hooray!, by N. Poydar and discussed how the characters were feeling on their first day of school. Then we made a feelings graph that showed how we felt on the first day of school. We shared our observations of the graph. We explored pattern blocks which will be a manipulative we'll be using this year. We shared what we noticed about the blocks or what we could do with them.
CHOICE TIME
We began to learn about the tables and materials that we'll use at choice time. At the art table we drew and used stencils. At collage we used playdough. At the math table we explored unifix cubes. At the letters table we explored uppercase and lowercase letter magnets.

We had our first fire drill! We did a great job exiting the building, staying in line and being quiet!

EXTRA

​Curriculum Night​: ​Thurs., Sept. 14, from 6-7:15 pm.​ Please come hear about the Kindergarten curriculum and about what a Kindergarten day is like. A conference sign-up will be available for conferences beginning in October.

Pictures: Please make sure to send in a 3x5 or 4x6 picture of your child this week. The picture should just be of your child, ie., not a group picture. Thank you to everyone who has sent one in.
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HAPPENINGS FOR JUNE 12- 16, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we practiced generating words that began with /k/ for "The ship is loaded with (a /k/ word)." We reviewed blending words having 3 phonemes in it, ie. "b-a-t" is "bat". In phonics we reviewed the silent 'e' and identified words with the long vowel sound in them. We built words having the short 'e' and short 'i' sounds in them using letter cards in the pocket chart. In writers' workshop we wrote and illustrated ideas in "My Kindergarten Year" book. Ideas included our teachers, specials and choice time activities, and friends. In independent reading we reviewed the reading strategies we've learned as well as sight words. We practiced using some of the sight words in a sentence. In handwriting we practiced writing our first and last name with an uppercase start followed by lowercase letters. In literature we read It Begins with A and identified items beginning with a letter of the alphabet based on clues from the text. We read Peanut Butter and Cupcake and discussed how sometimes it's hard to make new friends but we have to keep trying. We also discussed how it's important to have friends that may have different interests than us. That's how we learn new things.
MATH
We worked in our math journal and focused on: illustrating a set of 12 flowers thinking about 10's and 1's; solving a subtraction story problem; illustrating the equations 6+1=7 and 1+6=7 using the same pictures to represent the parts of the equation; identifying the missing number in a sequence and how you know it's that number. We shared some of our work and discussed how we solved the problem and there is more than 1 way to solve or prove an answer.
SCIENCE
We explored what happens when we put water drops on different kinds of paper. We worked with tissue, chipboard and waxed paper. We made predictions about how each kind of paper would react to the water drop. Then we discussed and compared how the papers absorbed the water differently. At the end of the lesson we each chose one of the 10 papers we've been exploring and placed it in a tub of water. We discussed what we thought would happen after the paper was in water for the weekend. 
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we began to review our year. We shared: fun experiences; favorite parts of the day; what was different about pre-K and Kindergarten; what was hard about Kindergarten; skills we've gotten better at; skills we'd like to improve on or to learn. These opportunities provided a chance to begin bringing closure to our year.
CHOICE TIME
At the letters table we illustrated and highlighted sight words for the song, "Make New Friends" which will go into our poetry binders. At the hands on table we explored sign language stamps. At the science table we played a 5 senses game. Arianna's mom helped at choice time.

We celebrated Michael's birthday and Ella's summer birthday!

In Book Buddies the 4th graders shared their animal projects with us. They read about their animal and showed us their slideshow presentation.

Zahra's mom came in and shared about Ramadan, a holiday that Zahra and her family celebrate. She read a story about Ramadan and explained the traditions of the holiday. For an art project we made paper lanterns which represent the light needed during the holiday.

We visited the Claypit Hill garden and saw that some our pumpkin plants had sprouted! We also looked at other plants growing in the garden.

EXTRA

Star T-Shirt: Please have your child wear his/her star t-shirt that they made on Wednesday.

Backpacks: Please make sure to check your child's backpack each day this week as we are sending home projects and materials every day.
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HAPPENINGS FOR JUNE 5-9, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we practiced blending sounds to make words, ie. r-e-d blends to make 'red'. We also substituted the initial sound in a word to make a new word or rhyming word, ie. it rhymes with 'note' and begins with /v/ = 'vote'. In phonics we reviewed how the silent 'e' at the end of the word makes the vowel before make the long sound. We made words with   '-ive' and '-ave'. We also reviewed the short 'u' sound and identified words having that sound in them. In writers' workshop we wrote about and illustrated a sense in the poem, "Five Senses Cheer". We chose a sense and drew 4 pictures that we use that sense for, ie for smell the pictures might be flowers, popcorn, smoke, perfume. In independent reading we learned a new strategy, Helpful Kangaroo. This strategy reminds us that if we have tried all of the other strategies and still can't read a word, we need to ask someone for help. We also reviewed what a reader does when there is different punctuation in the text. We reviewed all of our sight words. In literature we read about the sense of smell from the book, How My Senses Work. We read the poem, "Five Senses Cheer", and incorporated the sense of smell and taste. We read Nibbly Mouse and learned about different things that the mouse nibbled on in the story. We read My Five Senses and reviewed all of the senses while reading the story. After reading the book, The Pledge of Allegiance, we discussed the American flag, its history and the meaning of the words in the pledge.
MATH
We focused on combinations for 5. We brainstormed as many ways to make 5 using pictures and equations. When drawing pictures we discussed how the placement of the pictures is important to show combinations for 5, ie 2 apples and 3 bananas or 5 dots arranged as a 5 on a die. For equations we wrote addition and subtraction sentences. In our math journal we illustrated the equations 2+4=6 and 4+2=6. We discussed how the 2 equations are opposites. In stations we focused on: showing combinations for 7 with a number bond and an equation; writing numerals to 20; counting on using 2 die in addition cross-out; showing 5+5=10 with pictures and words; working on Symphony Math on the iPad.
SCIENCE
We began our unit on paper and learned about 10 different kinds of paper. We shared our observations about each kind and learned about how each paper is used in our environment. We explored how 3 kinds of paper (tagboard, paper towel, corrugated paper) compared when writing on them with a pencil, crayon and marker. We shared our observations about the best paper for writing, the worst and the most fun to write on.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we practiced using the problem-solving steps to focus on some problems that classmates had put in our 'problem box'.
We learned about the town of Wayland, specifically where we live and where some familiar sights are in town: Claypit Hill school, the library, the Town Building, the Town Beach, the Sudbury River. Then we found where we live on the map. Each of us had drawn a picture of our house to put on the map. An address label was attached to each house. We practiced saying our address including the town and country we live in. We shared what we noticed when the houses were put on the map.
CHOICE TIME
At the hands on table we finished a June calendar. At the art table we made star t-shirts. At the collage table we made wood sculptures using wood shapes, popsicle sticks, wood sticks and old pattern block shapes. Arianna's mom and Julia's mom helped at choice time.

Austin's dad came in and talked with us about aviation. We learned about bernoullis and how they make planes fly. We learned how this works by blowing on top of a strip of paper and seeing the paper rise. We learned how bernoullis work with propellers that he showed us. Then he showed and flew a drone for us outside! It was very exciting!

In Book Buddies we finished drawing our imaginary farms.

We celebrated Austin's birthday and Katelyn's summer birthday!

EXTRA

Pizza Lunch: Dr. Harvey will provide a pizza lunch for our class on Monday. Your child does not need to bring a lunch this day.

Library Books: If your child has a library book at home, please have them bring the book in on Monday.

Backpacks: In the next week we will be sending home materials and work. Please make sure to check your child's bag each day and help them to take it out. For folders, workbooks and the poetry binder please have your child a safe spot where they can save and look at their work.

Sunscreen/Water: Make sure to apply sunscreen each day and send in a water bottle for the warmer days.
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HAPPENINGS FOR MAY 29 - JUNE 2, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In writers' workshop we worked on expanding our writing. Instead of saying "It was fun," we discussed that we could write what part was fun to be more descriptive. We wrote and illustrated a part of Field Day. We added 'play' to our word wall. In handwriting we finished the last lowercase letters, x and z, and practiced writing words using lowercase letters. In independent reading we learned the reading strategy, "tryin' lion". This strategy encourages the reader to read the sentence through to the end and then reread the sentence with a word that makes sense, with comprehension and phonics. In literature we read about the sense of taste in How My Senses Work. We read You Are What You Eat which explained the different food groups that are important to include each day. We read Gregory the Horrible Eater and discussed how it didn't make sense that Gregory (a goat) preferred human food compared to what goats eat. We also discussed how his parents helped him eat a more balanced "goat diet". We illustrated and cut out a picture of our house which will be placed on a large map of Wayland. We will be learning our address and where we live geographically in Wayland. We will learn about waterways and conservation areas too. 
MATH
We worked on some 'function machines' which helps us be flexible in adding and subtracting from a given number. Some of us created our own 'function machines'. We completed a fruit graph by counting and recording the number of fruits and then answering some questions about the graph.
SCIENCE
We planted some pumpkin seeds in the Claypit Hill garden. We worked in teams of 3 to dig, plant and water the seed. We had a chance to tour the garden to see what fruits and vegetables are growing there. We will help to water the seeds for the next couple of weeks. 
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we reviewed some of the concepts we have learned the past few months: double D behavior, annoying behavior, teasing, problem-solving steps, qualities of a leader.
CHOICE TIME
At the letters table we made a little book, My Pet, which focused on the short 'e' sound. In the listening center we have the story, Noisy Breakfast. In the science area we have different materials to explore the sense of hearing: tuning forks; matching boxes with the same sound; exploring how sound vibrations travel through a string to our ear and make a sound! Arianna's mom helped at choice time.

We celebrated Gabe's summer birthday!

We had fun at Field Day despite the cool, cloudy day. Everyone participated at each event, cheered for their classmates and worked hard to do their best! Thank you to the parents that came and helped at events and at lunch!

We attended a strings concert performed by 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students.

We attended the author visit (Jacqueline Davies) and learned how words and sounds express sound, ie a soft or loud sound.

EXTRA

Library Book: All library books are due this Tuesday, June 6. Students will not be taking our books for the remainder of the school.
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HAPPENINGS FOR MAY 22- 26, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we practiced substituting the first sound in a word with a new sound to make a new word, ie. change the /f/ in 'fix' to /s/= 'six'. We reviewed the silent 'e' and made new words by changing the first sound in a word family (fine, line, mine) and by changing the second consonant ( cope, code, cone). In literature we read The Farm Concert and discussed what the reader needs to do when the print is in bold or when the size of the print changes. We read Too Much Noise and discussed how some sounds may seem loud but aren't when compared to other sounds. In the non-fiction book, You Hear with Your Ears, we learned how our ears work and how sounds are different. In the story, Noisy Nora, we discussed how Nora should have used her words instead of making so much noise to get her parents attention. We read the poem, "Five Senses Cheer", with the sense of hearing. We added 'went' to our word wall. In writers' workshop we drew and wrote about something we saw or did at the Garden in the Woods. We also worked on editing our writing by rereading the words to make sure the idea makes sense and that the words are spelled correctly. We also reviewed the importance of our illustrations and the details we need to include to supplement what our words say.
MATH
We worked on a story problem about having 5 crayons in a box that are red and blue. We showed our work with pictures, numbers and words. We discussed that there are many solutions to this problem and that we should try to find as many as we can. In stations we worked on: identifying teen numbers as 10 ones and more ones; combining 3 numbers on 3 die for the dice race to 18; illustrating the equation 3+6=9 with numbers, pictures and words; working on Symphony Math. We shared observations about our eye color graph.
SCIENCE
We had an informative trip to the Garden in the Woods. We learned about living and non-living things, saw different kinds of trees, explored how our sense of hearing changes when we cup our hands behind our ears, used our sense of smell for plants in the woods and saw turtles and frogs in the pond. We illustrated and wrote about our class tree in the spring. We compared the spring tree to the early spring tree that we had observed and drawn. We made a cover for our science folder by illustrating topics we learned about this year: trees, magnets, 5 senses, monarch butterflies, wood.
SOCIAL STUDIES
When we read Noisy Nora, we discussed how Nora should have used the problem-solving steps to try to solve her problem: she wanted to spend time with her parents but they were busy with her 2 younger siblings. We brainstormed some solutions that Nora could have used.
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we are creating pictures using our fingerprints and adding marker details for features. At the science table we are exploring our sense of sight using prisms and different kinds of kaleidoscopes. At the hands on table we are matching designs that are the same amongst several similar designs. Arianna's mom helped at choice time.

We had a full week of special activities. We had a cultural enrichment program, a lazer show. We saw the 5th grade play. We learned about instruments from Africa and got to play an African drum with Rhythm Kids.

EXTRA

Open HouseThurs., June 1, from 8-8:45 am. Families are welcome to visit the classroom with their child and look at their projects and work.

Field DayWed., May 31. ( Raindate is Wed., June 7.) Please make sure that your child wears the assigned color t-shirt and wears shoes good for running around in. Your child does not need a snack. Oranges and water will be provided. We will be eating outside (picnic style). Bringing a lunch on Wednesday will be easier.
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HAPPENINGS FOR MAY 15 -19, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued to practice segmenting and blending sounds in words to identify a word. In phonics we learned about the silent (magic) 'e'. We learned that when an 'e' is at the end of a word, it often makes the vowel before it "say it's name". We practiced making words having a short vowel sound and then adding an 'e' at the end, then we read the new word. For example we made 'cap', added a silent 'e' and made 'cape'. In literature we read about the sense of touch from How My Senses Work and read the poem, "Touch Your Nose". We read the story, Seven Blind Mice, and discussed how the importance of knowing or learning all that you can about something before you make a judgement. We learned the poem, "Five Senses Cheer!", and incorporated the sense of sight and touch into the poem. In handwriting we practiced writing f and q. We added 'she' to our word wall. In writers' workshop we read the story, What Pet Should I Get? and wrote an opinion piece about a good pet to have and why. In literacy centers we worked on: discussing the main idea and whether the story is fiction or non-fiction; writing about the story or making a connection to it; identifying the short vowel in a word; reading on Raz Kids; working on Lexia.
MATH
We continued to focus on combinations for 5 and for 10. We discussed strategies to help figure out the missing number in a combination: using our fingers; counting on or back. We also worked on representing combinations a different way with a number bond. A number bond is 3 circles (2 medium circles connected by lines to a larger circle) and it focuses on the whole and the 2 parts of a number. The whole (let's say 10) is in the larger circle and the parts ( 4 and 6) are in the 2 medium circles. This visual helps us see and understand the 2 parts that make up a number. In stations we focused on: number trains for 5 or 6, representing the combination with a number sentence and a number bond; representing the equation 2+4=6 with pictures, words and numbers; playing memory of combinations for 5 or 6; working on Symphony Math.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we brainstormed some solutions for a problem in our "problem box". We went through the problem-solving steps and then role-played a solution for this problem. 
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we made an example of plywood by gluing 5 pieces of thin wood together. At the math table we graphed our eye color. We colored a picture of an eye with our our pupil and iris color. In the block area we explored magna tiles. Jonathan's mom and Arianna's mom helped at choice time.

We had Book Buddies. We read the story, Harvey Potter's Balloon Farm, and brainstormed an imaginary farm we would draw. We started the illustration for our farm and will finish at our next meeting.

We attended a music concert (strings, choral and orchestra)  performed by Wayland High School students.

EXTRA

Field Trip: Tues., May 23, to Garden in the Woods. Please make sure to dress your child appropriately for walking in the woods. Pack his/her snack in a disposable bag and have all of the containers be disposable.

Open HouseThurs., June 1, from 8-8:45. Families are welcome to visit the classroom with their child and look at the projects and work.

Sunscreen and Bug Repellent​: Please apply these before your child comes to school. A hat is also good for sun protection as is long sleeves.
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HAPPENINGS FOR MAY 8-12, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on tapping out sounds and syllables in words. In literature we read the poem, "Roses Are Red", and found the sight words. We read the fairy tale, Jack and the Beanstalk, and identified the features that make it a fairy tale. We read the book,Look Book, and discussed how our eye sends information to our brain to help us know what the part of the picture is that we're seeing. We also read, Mom Can't See Me and learned how a mom that is blind is able to do many activities like our own moms. We read Mother's Day Mice and learned that presents we give our moms (or anyone) don't need to be bought but can be made or can be actions to show her we love her. In handwriting we practiced writing m, h and b. In writers' workshop we wrote an opinion piece about whether the pigeon should stay up late, after reading the book, Don't Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late. We needed to write we thought the pigeon should or should not stay up late. In literacy centers we worked on: reading and discussing a book we read; writing about a focus of the book; working on Lexia on the iPad; creating verses and  illustrating the poem, "Roses Are Red"; and working on Raz Kids on the iPad.
MATH
We continued to focus on combinations for 10. We worked on identifying an amount on a ten frame and then the number needed to complete the 10 frame. We wrote number sentences to represent the combinations. In our math journal we solved a story problem using numbers and illustrations. We practiced illustrating the amount as a ten frame configuration to help us see how many left when we showed the amount being subtracted. (There are 10 fish and 4 fish swim away. How many are left?) In stations we focused on: combinations for 5; using numbers, words and pictures to show 2+3=5; playing domino addition; and working on Symphony Math on the iPad.
SCIENCE
We observed sawdust and wood shavings. We mixed them together and predicted what would happen if we put the mixture in water. We then sprinkled the mixture on a cup of water and observed the sawdust and wood shavings sink and float on the water. 
SOCIAL STUDIES
We discussed the size of the problem and what this means. We learned that our reaction to a problem should match the size of our problem should, ie. if we have a small problem, we should have a small reaction. We learned that sometimes we have a big reaction to a small problem, ie. we overreact about a situation. When this happens, others around us think we might have a serious problem. We also discussed if we have a big reaction to a small problem, then we don't focus on trying to solve the problem just our reaction.
​CHOICE TIME
At the hands on table we did an ABC dot-dot. At the letters table we made word family flowers. We chose a word family (-it, -est) and wrote words on the petals of the flower in this word family. In the listening center we have the book, Rumpelstilkstin. Ella's grandmother, Nicolas' and Arianna's moms helped at choice time.

We had a special presentation, Windows on Wildlife, and learned about the life cycle of raptors. We got to see 2 owls and a hawk.

EXTRA

Open House: June 1 from 8-8:45. Families are welcome to visit the classroom with their child and look at their work and projects.

Field Trip Permission: Please return the permission slip and check for our trip to the Garden in the Woods.
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HAPPENINGS FOR MAY 1- 5, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on word families and building words. For our new sight word 'get' we brainstormed other words that rhymed with 'get' and identified that these were words in the '-et' word family. We focused on the short vowel sound of 'e'. In literature we read the fairy tale, Hansel and Gretel, and identified the features that make it a fairy tale. We read The Thing about Spring and discussed why one of the characters didn't like spring at the beginning of the story but did at the end. We learned the poem, "Roses are Red", and made new verses by substituting other words for items that are red, blue and sweet. We read about the 5 senses and the sense of sight from the book, How My Senses Work, as we begin a unit on the 5 senses. We added 'get' and 'was' to our word wall. In handwriting we practiced writing 'p', 'r' and 'n'. In writing we practiced writing an opinion piece by writing about our favorite special and why we like that special. In literacy centers we focused on: making a sight word book; reading and discussing the main idea of a book; writing about the book; working on Lexia on the iPad; and reading books on Raz Kids on the iPad.
MATH
We focused on combinations of 10 with the game 'spill the beans'. With a partner we took turns dropping 2 sided beans and recording the drop. Then we wrote the number sentences for each drop. In our math journal we illustrated 4 sided shapes and labeled the sides and illustrated shapes with 3 corners and labeled the corners. We worked on drawing different kinds of triangles for the 3 cornered shapes. In stations we focused on: making combinations of 4, 5 or 6 using 2 numeral cards; creating a robot with many different shapes; making 10 using 10 frame puzzle pieces; working on splash math or Symphony Math on the iPad.
SCIENCE
We used sand paper to change the shape of a piece of basswood. We identified the sawdust as tiny pieces of wood. We looked at some wood shavings and compared the wood shavings to the sawdust.
We started a unit on the 5 senses and identified which part of the body experienced each of the senses. We read about the sense of sight and learned about the parts of the eye and how it works.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle Ms. Barnett and I role played a solution to a problem that we've been talking about in circle. She and I purposely changes our tones of voice and did not pay attention to body space. We discussed how having a mean tone of voice or an angry face may not help to solve your problem. As a group we discussed why it's important to think about your tone of voice and how you use your body when talking with others. We created a problem-solving box for students to draw or write about problems they may have that they would like the class to help solve.
CHOICE TIME
In dramatic play we opened a vet office. We have some stuffed animals to visit the vet, some x-rays of animals and some vet tools to help make the animal better. At the art table we made a flower door decoration with marker and tissue paper. At the science table we explored all the wood pieces in a tub of water. Arianna's mom and Julia's mom helped at choice time.

We celebrated Jonathan's birthday!

EXTRA

Poetry Binder: Please have your child read the poems and the sight words with you. 

Open House: Fri., June 2 from 8:15-9 am. Families are welcome to visit the classroom with their child and look at their work and projects.
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HAPPENINGS FOR APRIL 24-28,2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on the short vowels 'a' and 'e' and sorted pictures having these short vowels (ie. cap, nest). We learned about the ending '-ing' and found words in a poem with '-ing', like 'spring'. In literature we focused on the features of a fairy tale and the read Goldilocks and the Three Bears and Rumpelstilksten. We also read a version of Goldilocks and the three bears which was Leola and the Honeybears. We compared the 2 versions. We read Spring is Here and Fletcher in Spring. We discussed what features of spring were shown in each book. We added 'can' and 'not' to our word wall. In handwriting we practiced writing l, k, y and j. In writing we focused on finishing our stories and thinking of how to end our story. We discussed punctuation and how as a writer we can add meaning to our writing. In literacy centers we focused on: reading and discussing the main idea of a book; working on our writing; illustrating a poem; working on Lexia; playing a game focusing on short vowels.
MATH
We reviewed 3 dimensional shapes. We found a 3 dimensional shape in the classroom and sorted the objects based on their shape. We played build a floor and focused on making combinations for 5 or 6. We recorded our combinations as number sentences. In math stations we worked on: identifying combinations for 4 and 5; creating a picture incorporating trapezoids' making new numbers by adding or subtracting a number (-1, -2, +1, +2, +3); working on Symphony Math on the iPad.
SCIENCE
We reviewed the wood we have been learning about. We found an item in the classroom made of wood and labeled it. Some items that were found included: a pencil, a ruler, a rocking chair, the doll house, a shelf. We shared our wood homework by naming one item we found at home made of wood. We read the book, A Day with a Carpenter, and discussed how the carpenter changes the wood to make something, in this case a bench.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed what to do at the green light for problem solving: make a plan and try it. We used one of the solutions we had brainstormed and identified our plan for solving the problem. We role played how this might look.
CHOICE TIME
At the letters table we finished our pull-thru which makes words having '-op' in them. In the listening center we have the book, The Three Billy Goats Gruff. In the science area we explored water drops on all of the wood we are learning about. Arianna's mom helped at choice time.

EXTRA

Open House: Fri., June 2 from 8:15-9 am. Families are invited to come and visit the classroom and look at their child's work and projects.

Dismissal Changes: If your child has a dismissal change, please email me by 8:15 am. Otherwise please call the office and let them know of the change. The office will give me a note about the change. I don't always get to read my email before dismissal and thus may miss an email that comes after 8:15. Thank you!
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HAPPENINGS FOR APRIL 10-14, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we identified the short vowel sound of 'e'. We identified words beginning with or had the medial sound of the short 'e': egg, exit, elephant, bed, leg. In literature we learned the poem, "Spring". We read the story, Red:A Crayon's Story, and discussed what the problem was in the story. We added 2 sight words to our word wall: up, down. In handwriting we practiced the lowercase 'e'. In writers' workshop we reviewed the short vowels and discussed that every word needs a vowel. We are working on segmenting words we write to be able to identify the vowel sound. We also discussed how to end a story that we write. 
MATH
We continued with our study of 3-dimensional shapes. We took a 3-D shape hunt in the classroom to find items in the room that represent 3-D shapes: a marker is a cylinder; a tissue box is a rectangular prism; the globe is a sphere. We played 10 bears on a bus and identified different combinations of 10 using 2 colors of bears. We picked a numeral card and put that many bears on the bus. Then we determined how many more bears were needed to fill the bus to 10. We wrote the number sentences for each combination. In stations we worked on: figuring out the missing addend in a number sentence; identifying combinations for 5 or 6; incorporating a square and triangle into an illustration; matching a numeral to tallies, to a picture of items or to complete a number sequence; working on tangrams and Splash Math.
SCIENCE
We continued our study of wood and how pine and plywood react in water; it floats. With a partner we sunk each kind of wood by using a rubber band and paperclips. We counted the number of paperclips we used to sink each and compared the data. We brainstormed why the pine wood needed more paperclips than the plywood.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed what the next step at the yellow light is for problem-solving: thinking about what might happen if a solution is used. We reviewed the solutions we had brainstormed and decided as a group whether a solution would be a good one to try.
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we are making nursery rhyme mini books. At the hands on table we are making an April calendar. At the math table we are making a cube or pyramid using marshmellows and toothpicks. Julia's dad helped at choice time.

We celebrated Kaydan's birthday!

We participated in a community service project with the school. We created designs on an outline of our hand. The cut out hands will be sent to and sold by the group. The money raised will be donated to children's programs in Nicaragua and Indonesia. Their designs were beautiful!

EXTRA

School Vacation: We will return to school on Mon., April 24.

Snow Gear: We will send home any of your child's snow gear that is at school.
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HAPPENINGS FOR APRIL 3 - 7, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued to work on blending and segmenting sounds in words. In literature we read Jaha and Jamil Went Down the Hill: An African Mother Goose Book. These rhymes incorporated African animals, foods and geography into familiar Mother Goose rhymes. We identified which Mother Goose rhyme each of the African rhymes went with. We began a study of fairy tales. We learned that a 'true' fairy tale has at least features in the story. We read Three Billy Goats Gruff and identified the features that make it a fairy tale. In independent reading we learned the strategy, "skippy frog". With this strategy the reader tries some strategies to sound out the word. If unsuccessful, the reader 'skips' the word to read the rest of the words in the sentence. This helps the reader gather meaning to the sentence and can help read the skipped unknown word. In handwriting we practiced 'g' and 'u'. In writers' workshop we continued to work on our stories. In literacy centers we focused on: beginning sounds in words; sight words; reading and discussing the main idea of a book; writing about a part of the book or making a connection to the book; working on Lexia.
MATH
We reviewed the 3 dimensional shapes and identified the faces of the shapes. At tables we matched the face of 3 dimensional blocks to a 2 dimensional representation. We found different blocks that had the same faces. We reviewed how to make tallies and recorded how many lowercase 'm' we found in the classroom using tallies. Then we counted how many we found. In stations we focused on: learning and identifying 4 attributes of attribute blocks (color, shape, size, thickness); recording pattern blocks used for a puzzle; incorporating a large square into a picture; using a tangram app on the iPad.
SCIENCE
 We read A Tree for All Seasons and predicted what our class tree might look like in early spring. We illustrated our tree for an early spring observation. We worked with pine and particleboard wood samples and explored what happens when each of them has a drop of water on them. We learned that each kind of wood absorbs the water but at different rates.
SOCIAL STUDIES
We read the book, Teamwork Isn't My Thing: I Don't Like to Share. We discussed why teamwork is important for us and the group. We shared different ways that we show teamwork in the classroom. 
CHOICE TIME
At the math table we finished our number book, practicing numbers to 10. At the collage table we are decorating a 'space friend' which can be used to help us create spaces between our words when writing or to use as a pointer when we are reading. In the listening center we have the story, Finders Keepers for Franklin.

EXTRA

Boots: Please send in boots for your child until the mud has dried up. The playground and grassy areas are still wet. Make sure that they have a pair of shoes to wear when inside.

Snack: Some children are commenting that they are still hungry after they finish snack. Please check in with your child to see if they may want an addition to their snack.
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HAPPENINGS FOR MARCH 27 - 31, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we are working on blending and segmenting sounds in words. For blending we listen to the sounds in isolation of a word,         ie. s-i-t, think about the sounds and their sequence and blend the sounds to make the word. In segmenting we say or tap each sound in a word, ie, cab would be c-a-b. Tapping the sounds on our fingers helps to isolate each sound. We are working on 2-4 phoneme (sound) words. We added 'all' and 'said' to our sight word wall. In literature we read and acted out some nursery rhymes. We also found the rhyming words. We read the story, Are We Still Friends?, and talked about the problem the main characters had and how they might solve it. We read Frog on a Log? which is a fun rhyming book about animals that sit on items that rhymes with them, ie. "hares sit on chairs". In handwriting we practiced writing lowercase a, d, t and i. In writers' workshop we worked on our stories. In literacy centers we worked on: reading and discussing the main idea of a book; writing about a part of the book or making a connection to the book; adding the last sound to a stamped word; finding the sight words in "Humpty Dumpty"; working on Lexia. 
MATH
We worked on illustrating a number sentence (4+2=6) and labeling the answer "6 and the name of the category". We also focused on showing the number sentence using a number bond. The number bond helps us think about the whole and its parts: 6 is the whole; 4 and 2 are the parts. In stations we worked on: attributes of blocks; identifying missing parts of a whole; substituting pattern blocks for other blocks in puzzles and in the game, trade a block; working on Symphony Math on the iPad.
SCIENCE
We began a unit on wood. We learned the name of 5 different kinds of wood: pine, redwood, basswood, plywood, particleboard. We also learned how each wood is used and if it is natural (redwood, pine, basswood) or man-made (plywood, particleboard). 
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed what happens at the yellow light in problem-solving. We discussed the first part, how to brainstorm solutions to a problem. We practiced brainstorming solutions to a problem. An important part to this step is not to decide if a solution is a good one or not.
CHOICE TIME
At the collage table we created a collage incorporating a shape into the picture. A square might be used as a house with a door, roof and windows added. At the art table we painted murals depicting the nursery rhyme, "Jack and Jill". At the hands on table we are doing a dot-dot of Little Miss Muffet. Ella's mom helped at choice time.

We celebrated Marc and Reese's birthdays!

We had a bus evacuation practice.

EXTRA

Snow Gear: Please continue to send in your child's snow gear as it looks like we'll have some snow for a bit longer!
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HAPPENINGS FOR MARCH 20 - 24, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we practiced replacing the final sound of a word with a new sound to make a new word. If the word is 'bit', we changed the /t/ to a /g/ to make the new word 'big'. We sorted pictures by the last sound: /l/, /g/, /n/. In literature we continued to read and have students act out the nursery rhyme, "Jack Be Nimble". We read The Itsy Bitsy Spider and The Eensy Weensy Spider and compared and contrasted the 2 versions of the nursery rhyme. We read Shapes in the Kitchen and identified the 2-dimensional shapes that you might find in a kitchen. In handwriting we have started practicing writing the lowercase letters. We practiced writing 's', 'v' and 'w'. In independent reading we learned a new reading strategy, 'Chunky Monkey'. For this strategy a reader tries to find a small word or word part within the word to help sound out the word. For example in the word 'kitten' a reader would find the word, 'it', and add the /k/ to get 'kit'. Then the reader may either sound out the rest of the word or may sound out 'ten' to blend and read 'kitten'. In Literacy Centers we focused on: reading and discussing the main idea of a book; working on our writing in our writing folder; identifying words with short 'a' or short 'i'; illustrating and highlighting the sight words in the nursery rhyme, "Jack Be Nimble"; working on Lexia on the iPad.
MATH
We continued to focus on 2-dimensional shapes with a shape hunt. In pairs we walked around the classroom and found 2-dimensional shapes represented in our room: the clock as a circle; the schedule cards as a rectangle; the floor tile as a square. We drew and wrote each item found. We also began to learn about 3-dimensional shapes: sphere, cube, cylinder, cone, rectangular prism. We explored geo-blocks which includes some 3-dimensional shapes. In our math journal we solved a subtraction story problem showing how many are subtracted and the number sentence. In stations we focused on: learning how pattern blocks represent other pattern blocks; completing pattern block puzzles; creating pictures or designs with 2-dimensional shapes; working with tangrams on an app on the iPad.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed the second part of the red light step for problem solving: stating the problem with a feeling word. We practiced identifying a feeling word and stating the problem for some different situations. We reviewed the importance of calming down for the first step of the red light.
CHOICE TIME
At the math table we are making a number book for "1, 2 Buckle My Shoe" and practicing writing our numbers. At the letters table we are retelling some nursery rhymes with flannel board pieces. In the listening center we have the book, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.

We had Book Buddies. Our Book Buddy helped us make a card for the bus drivers for Bus Driver Appreciation Day last Friday.

We celebrated Arianna's birthday!

We attended the Book Fair.

EXTRA

Wipes and Hand Sanitizer: Thank you for all of the wipes and bottles of hand sanitizer! We are all set for now.

Glass Water Bottles: Please have your child bring a non-glass water bottle for school. Although the bottle is covered with a plastic lattice covering, it is possible for the bottle to break if dropped. This happened already. For everyone's safety a plastic or metal water bottle is better.
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HAPPENINGS FOR MARCH 13- 17, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we brainstormed rhyming words for our new sight word 'see'. We discussed that when there are 2 e's together in a word, the sound will be the long 'e' sound. We also added 'be' to our word wall and learned the difference between the insect 'bee' and the sight word 'be'. In literature we learned the nursery rhyme "Jack Be Nimble" and acted it out by substituting our names into the rhyme. We read the book, The Shape of Things, and identified different shapes that were within the illustrations. We also read Hunter's Best Friend at School and discussed how we sometimes need to help our friends do what is expected and not do what our friend is doing (unexpected behavior). We read 2 class books that we had made: Our 100 Collections and 100 Foods I Would Eat and Never Eat. In writers' workshop we continued focusing on story writing. We learned how to decide on a title and cover for our book and how to add detail to our text. We started Literacy Centers this week. During Literacy Centers we focus on different literacy skills: reading and discussing a book in a small group; writing in our writing folder or doing a reading response; working on Lexia on the iPad; illustrating a poem; playing a game or doing an activity focusing on phonemic awareness and phonics. This week we focused on: identifying the first sound of words using beginning sound stamps which had the first sound missing; highlighting the sight words in the nursery rhyme, "The Cat and the Fiddle"; worked on Lexia, worked on writing in our folder; read  and discussed a book in our small group.
MATH
We continued our focus on 2 dimensional shapes. We compared a circle and a hexagon and identified the attributes of each shape. We played a game using pattern blocks, "Fill the Hexagon". We used a special die which had a triangle, hexagon, trapezoid, and rhombus on it. On each turn we rolled the die and used the shape shown to fill a hexagon on the board. We had fill 6 hexagons. We learned how different shapes make a hexagon: 6 triangles; 2 trapezoids; 1 trapezoid, 1 triangle and 1 rhombus; and several other combinations. In math stations we focused on: making hexagons with other shapes; identifying shapes on a robot picture; sorting and counting a grab of pattern blocks; exploring tangrams on an app on the iPad.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we reviewed the meaning of each light on the traffic signal as it pertains to problem-solving. We focused on the first part of the red light: calm down. We shared different calm down strategies that we use. We discussed why it's important to calm down before trying to solve a problem if we feel mad or sad. We also discussed what might happen if we didn't calm down and tried to go ahead and solve the problem; we might do something that we shouldn't so, ie. say something or do something to the person.
CHOICE TIME
At the collage table we are making a representation of 'Hickory Dickory Dock' including the clock face, the mouse and the rhyme. At the art table we are illustrating and writing about something we have learned about magnets. This will go in our science folder. In the listening center we have the book, Three Little Kittens. Julia's mom helped at choice time.

We celebrated Arianna's birthday!

EXTRA

Book Fair: Tues., March 21, from 1:30 - 2 pm. If you would like to join us to help your child choose books, we would look forward to having you.

Poetry Binder: Make sure that your child reads the poems in his/her poetry binder as well as the words on the sight word ring. When reading the poems have your child point to the words as he/she reads. For the sight words have your child find a sight word or 2 in a book or on a cereal box. This helps them learn to read the word in other environments.

Snow Gear: Please continue to send in your child's snow gear for recess. Make sure that they have gloves or mittens. If possible have the snow gear in a separate bag. This helps your child pack the clothes more independently. 

Clorox Wipes and Hand Sanitizer: We are in need of containers of Clorox wipes to wipe the tables. We also need a few bottles of hand sanitizer. Thank you!
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HAPPENINGS FOR MARCH 6 - 10, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we made new words by substituting the first sound with another sound, ie. change the /s/ in 'sit' to /l/- the new word is 'lit'. We played the circle of rhymes with the target word 'hug'. We sorted pictures by their short vowel sound- i, o, u. In phonics we built words having a short vowel sound of 'o' and 'u'. We added the sight words "so" and "he" to the word wall. In literature we began a study of nursery rhymes. We read several nursery rhymes and identified the rhyming words. We learned the rhyme, "Fish Alive", and illustrated pictures and highlighted the sight words for our poetry binder. We read 2 books by Isabelle Harper and Barry Moser, My Dog Rosie, and My Cats Nick and Nora. We identified the setting, the characters and the main idea. In writers' workshop we began story writing. We are thinking of an event or happening that we can tell about on several pages with illustrations and words. We referenced My Dog Rosie and My Cats Nick and Nora and focused on how each story told about an event and showed different aspects of the story on each page.
MATH
We began a study on shapes. We are beginning with 2-dimensional shapes. We identified triangles and rectangles and discussed each shapes attributes. We learned that a square is a special rectangle. We learned the names of the pattern blocks; we labeled the blue and white diamonds rhombuses. As with the triangles and rectangles we identified attributes of the pattern blocks. We focusing on the edges/sides and the corners of each shape. In our math journal we illustrated the number sentence 3+2=5. We thought of a category and 2 items to draw in the category. Then we labeled our illustration with the name of the category. For example 3 bananas and 2 pears make 5 fruits.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we began a discussion about problem-solving. We shared different types of Kindergarten problems at school. We referred to a traffic light and learned how the signals on a traffic light will help us with the steps of problem-solving.
CHOICE TIME
At the math table we are exploring the app, Splash Math. At the hands on table we are making a March calendar. At the letters table we are making a pull-thru for the '-ip' word family.

We attended School Meeting.

We celebrated Julia's birthday!

EXTRA

Snow Gear: I spoke too soon! Looks like we may need the snow gear next week given the weather forecast of a snowstorm! Please send in your child's snow gear in a separate bag. Thank you!

Clorox Wipes: We are in need of Clorox wipes if you are able to send in a container. Thank you!
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HAPPENINGS FOR FEB. 27 - MARCH 3, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued to make new words by changing the first sound. We played circle of rhymes with the target word, 'man'. We played "the ship is loaded with words beginning with /g/". We sorted pictures by the short vowel 'i' or 'u'. In phonics we identified the hard sound of 'c' (as in 'corn'). We identified the short vowel sound of 'u' and brainstormed words beginning or including the short 'u' sound. We practiced building words by changing 1 letter to make a new word, ie, make 'fit' say 'bit'. We volunteered to change the correct letter to make the new word. We practiced changing all positions of letters in a word. We added the sight words "little" and "one" to the word wall. In literature we read Daisy Comes Home by J. Brett. We identified the characters, the setting and the main idea of the story. In honor of Dr. Seuss we read What Pet Should I Get? and shared what pet we thought the main characters decided on at the end of the story. We read Dan, the Flying Man by J. Cowley. We made predictions about the story and discussed how they matched at the end. We practiced summarizing the story. In writers' workshop we illustrated the poem, "Chickadees", for our poetry binder. After the vacation we added new ideas for writing to our finding stories page. We focused on tapping out unknown words to help us hear as many sounds as possible.
MATH
We continued to focus on addition and subtraction using manipulatives, pictures and number sentences. In our math journal we illustrated a subtraction story problem. We learned how to cross out or circle the amount that is subtracted from the total. We played Bump with a partner and practiced adding 2 die. In stations we focused on: subtraction with a grab bag game; matching a partially filled 10 frame to the corresponding number in 10 frame dominos; adding with the game cross-out addition; working on Symphony Math.
SCIENCE
We filled our STEAM feeders and hung them outside the classroom! We watched a video about backyard birds and learned the names (and songs) of some birds that are common to our area: chickadees, cardinals, blue jays, finches, sparrows.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Social Thinking we read the book, The Group Plan. We learned the importance of having everyone thinking and following the same plan when we are trying to accomplish something. If we are thinking of different ideas, then a task or job often doesn't get done or doesn't get done as easily when everyone is working together. We brainstormed when we as a class need to follow the group plan to help things go smoothly.
CHOICE TIME
At the letters table we are making our own letter book by choosing a letter and writing/illustrating 4 items that begin with our letter/sound. We opened the sand table. It has scoopers, animals, rakes and sieves to explore with.

We had Book Buddies. In celebration of Dr. Seuss' birthday we made a Cat in the Hat tic-tac-to board and played the game.

EXTRA

Snow Gear: Hopefully we have seen the last of the snow for this year! We will send home your child's snow gear (if it's still on their hook). In case of muddy days please have your child bring boots.

Clorox Wipes: We are need of some Clorox wipes if you are able to send some in. Thank you!
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HAPPENINGS FOR FEB. 13-17, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on switching the beginning sound in a word with another sound to make a new word: "change the /s/ in 'sit' to a /f/, what's the new word? 'Fit'. This is an oral activity which focuses on manipulating sounds in words. In phonics we identified the sound of 'z' in the beginning of words. In literature we learned a new poem,"Chickadees", and acted out the ideas of the poem. We read the book, Hedgie's Surprise, by J. Brett. We identified the problem and how the characters solved the problem. We also brainstormed how we would solve the problem too. We read Fritz and the Beautiful Horses by J. Brett and discussed how Fritz was being teased by the town people and the other horses because of his size and lack of beauty. We also discussed the importance of getting to know a person and not judging them by their looks or their actions. In writers' workshop we illustrated the poems, "Valentines" and "A Valentine", and highlighted the sight words. We also focused on having our illustration and words match when we are writing pieces. In independent reading we added a new book basket which has a variety of leveled readers. We discussed the importance of using the eagle eye strategy when we are trying to read an unknown word.
MATH
We worked on an addition story problem in our math journal. We illustrated the problem and wrote the number sentence to describe the problem. In stations we focused on: identifying combinations for 4 and 5; identifying the number that comes before or after a given number; creating as many combinations for 5 and recording a number sentence to describe it; working on Symphony Math or Starfall Math on the iPad.
SCIENCE
We worked on our STEAM project to build a bird feeder using recycled materials. The first day we watched a video about backyard feeders and shared what we noticed about the feeders. Then we worked with a partner and explored the recycled materials we could use to build the feeder. Next we drew a plan for building a feeder. The second day we built the feeder with our partner using the recycled materials we had chosen in addition to glue, tape, hole punchers and scissors. We will fill the feeders with seed and hang the feeders outside our classroom after vacation. 
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we reviewed the different kinds of problems we have discussed and identified a problem within a given scenario. We discussed what the behavior was and how the problem could be solved. We also discussed how we as a class were doing dealing with the different kinds of problems.
CHOICE TIME
In the block area we are creating many different domino paths. We are learning how to position the blocks to enable them to fall onto the next block to create a fall of blocks. At the art table we are illustrating and writing an alternative 'trick' to surprise the Tomten in Hedgie's Surprise. We will make a class book with our ideas. Zahra's mom helped at choice time.

We had an assembly with Bren Bataclan, the artist in residence at Claypit Hill. We learned about him and how he draws some of the characters for his paintings. We had a chance to practice drawing some of the characters.

EXTRA

Poetry Binders: Make sure to have your child read the new poems and review the sight words in his/her poetry binder. Please return the binder by Wednesday.

Snow Gear: Depending on whether we have snow after the vacation, please send in your child's snow gear in a separate bag. It's hard to out all of the gear in the backpack. Also sometimes the gear is wet and is better to put into another bag.

Recycle Materials: Thank you to everyone for sending in the recycle materials for our STEAM project! We are all set and won't need anymore materials.
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HAPPENINGS FOR FEB. 6-10, 2017

LANGAUGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on sounds in words and identifying the beginning, middle and final sounds in words. We identified what sound 3 words shared. For the words "sat", "map", "had", all of these words have the short 'a' in the middle. We focused on segmenting and blending sounds in. We are learning to tap out the sounds in a word and count the number of sounds it has: 'cat' ,c-a-t, has 3 sounds. In phonics we identified the sound of 'v' and the short 'o' sound. We brainstormed words having these sounds in them. We added 'are' and 'do' to our word wall. In literature we read The Cheerio Counting Book and practiced identifying and counting groups of 10 to 100. We read Ruby the Copycat and discussed how Ruby was being annoying to Angela by copying everything Angela did. In writers' workshop we illustrated the song, "100 Day Song", and highlighted the sight words. We worked in our writing folder and worked on writing a sentence to describe our picture. We are learning to end our sentence with a period.
MATH
We celebrated 100's Day! We had a 100 themed choice time where we could choose from a variety of activities related to 100. Activities included: making 100 glasses; rolling a die to 100; making a chain with 100 pipe cleaners; finding a mystery number by coloring numbers on a 100 grid; writing about eating 100 of one type of food and not wanting to eat 100 of another food; building a tower with 100 rods; bouncing a ball 100 times; doing 100 jumping jacks; taking 100 footsteps from our classroom. Thank you to the parents that came in and helped us: Sophia's mom, Reese's mom; Ella's mom, Jonathan's mom, Hayden's mom, Marc's mom, Nicolas' dad and Austin's dad. We focused on teen numbers and learning that a teen number has a group of ten and some ones.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed what teasing is and shared examples of teasing behavior. We also shared how it makes us feel when we're teased. We learned to speak up to someone who is teasing us by saying their name and telling the person that we don't like what they are saying. If our words don't work, then we know to tell a teacher that we have a problem and need help solving it.
SCIENCE
From our exploration of magnets and different objects we shared what objects were magnetic and what objects were not. We hypothesized why some objects were magnetic and what made them different from the objects that weren't. We read about magnets and learned that for an item to be magnetic it needs to have iron, cobalt, steel or nickel in it. We had tested a metal spoon and a metal screw that were not magnetic. So we learned that neither of them had a magnetic metal in them.
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we painted a bag to collect our valentines. At the letters table we are making a letter book by choosing a letter and drawing/writing items that begin with that letter. At the science table we are exploring how strong magnets are by having them attract items through different thicknesses of paper. Julia's mom helped at choice time.

We attended a Cultural Enrichment program about Middle East music and dancing.

At Book Buddies we worked on different 100 related activities: 100 coin tosses, color and count 100 pictures, write your name in a 100 grid and color the letters.

​EXTRA

​Valentines​: If your child plans to bring in valentines, please make sure that he/she brings in one for each classmate and that they are labeled. Valentines can be brought in on Monday or Tuesday. We will start to deliver them on Monday.
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HAPPENINGS FOR JAN. 30-FEB. 3, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued to blend orally words having 3 sounds. We began to blend sounds in words that are written. We practiced saying the first sound, the middle sounds, blending the first and middle sound and then adding the final sound to say the entire word. If the word is "sat", we would say the first sound /s/, the middle sound /a/, then the first and middle sounds together /sa/, add the final sound /t/ and then blend the 2 parts together. This is one way for students to sound out unknown words. We identified words beginning with /y/ and /r/. In handwriting we practiced writing J- this is the last uppercase letter. We will start lowercase letters in handwriting in the spring. In literature we read 100 Day Worries and identified the 100 collection that the main character collected for her class. We read Groundhog's Day and discussed what groundhog's day is about. We also read about groundhogs. We read Five Little Penguins Slipping on the Ice and compared it to the story Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed. We discussed how eagle eye helps the reader to know what the words are on the page. We learned a song about 100's day. We also learned to poems about valentines. In writers' workshop we added a tool to help us write sight words: a sight word chart for each table. We discussed what a sentence is and what it needs to have to be a sentence. We added 'come' to our word wall.
MATH
We continued to work on addition and subtraction and played the game, the growing and disappearing train game. This game requires the player to add and subtract cubes by rolling a die with +1, +2, +3, -1, -2, -3 on it. We practiced saying whether we were adding or subtracting an amount. We worked with 5 or 6 number trains and thought about the combinations that make 5 or 6. We predicted whether the groundhog would see its' shadow and analyzed what we thought. Three of us thought it would see its shadow and 13 thought it wouldn't see its shadow. We made a number sentence to describe our graph: 3+13=16. In stations we focused on: thinking of and showing a story to match a number sentence; playing the growing and disappearing train game; building the number on a ten frame and showing/recording +1 or -1; woking on Starfall Math with counting, number sequences and counting forward and backward. We illustrated our 100 collection for a class book.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we identified what dangerous and destructive behaviors are at school, and named these types of behaviors Double D's. We discussed why certain behaviors are dangerous or destructive and learned that we always tell a teacher when we see a DD. We also discussed what annoying behavior is and differentiated it from DD behavior. We identified some annoying behaviors we would see at school. We learned that we need to try to solve this problem ourselves by using our words- being specific about the annoying behavior and why we don't like it.
CHOICE TIME
At the math table we are exploring a 100 grid by placing all the number tiles in order to 100. At the hands on table we are making a February calendar. At the collage table we are creating an armadillo similar to the armadillo in the story,Armadillo Rodeo, by J. Brett. Kaydan's grandmother helped at choice time.

We attended a concert performed by the Wayland Middle School students. There was even a sighting of Spiderman while the chorus sang the Spiderman theme song!

EXTRA

Warm Clothing: Please make sure that your child has mittens/gloves, a hat or hood and boots each day.

Kleenex: We could use some boxes of Kleenex for the classroom. Send it in with your child. Thank you!
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HAPPENINGS FOR JAN. 23-27, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we began our focus on blending sounds in CVC (consonant, vowel, consonant) words, like 'hat' or 'sit'. We listened to the sounds ( h-a-t), sequenced the sounds and identified the word, 'hat'. We identified the sound of /q/ and the short vowel sound of /i/. We sorted pictures by their vowel sound, short /a/ or short /i/. We played circle of rhymes with the target word, 'mitten'. In handwriting we practiced the letters S, A, I and T. In literature we read Let's Read about Rosa Parks and discussed why she was a brave woman. We read A. Tresselt's version of The Mitten and compared it to Jan Brett's version. We read 2 more books written and illustrated by Jan Brett: The Umbrella and Armadillo Rodeo. We compared The Umbrella to The Mitten. We learned about armadillos which helped us understand the characters in the story. We learned the poem, "Feelings". In writers' workshop we focused on making finger spaces between our words and on working productively during the time- adding details to our picture, adding words, or starting a new piece of writing. We illustrated the poem, "Feelings", and wrote and illustrated the feeling we had that day.  In independent reading we learned about a new reading strategy, 'stretchy snake'. This strategy encourages us to think about each sound in a word and gradually 'stretch out' all of the sounds to identify the word. We added "am" to the word wall.
MATH
We continued our focus on addition and subtraction and learning the symbols for a number sentence. We played the game, Growing Train Game, and focused on adding 1, 2 or 3 to a growing amount. We practiced verbalizing the addition sentence after each turn. If a train was on 8 and +3 was rolled, the student would say, "8 plus 3 makes 11". The train went up to 20. In our math journal we illustrated 15 snowflakes. We discussed how to draw them in groups versus randomly on the page. In stations we focused on: addition and subtraction story problems; filling and counting cubes in a space and recording the amount; playing the disappearing train game; working on the iPad on counting and completing number sequences on Starfall Math.
​SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed the importance of speaking up. We identified specific things we need to do when speaking: talk clearly, talk at a good rate, talk loud enough for others to hear. We also discussed how our tone of voice needs to change depending on the situation.
​CHOICE TIME
At the art table we are designing a pair of mittens by drawing a design with crayon and painting over it watercolor paints. They will be connected by a string and will hang on our classroom tree. At the science table we are sorting objects by whether they are magnetic or not. Kaydan's grandmother helped at choice time.

We had the ALICE drill on Friday. Everyone did a great job following the directions and doing what was expected.

EXTRA

Poetry Binder: Make sure to have your child read the new poems and sight words in his/her poetry binder. Please return the binder by Wednesday.

Symphony Math: The Symphony Math program that we use at school is to be used only at school. The data from the program helps inform my instruction with each child. If a child is being helped at home when using it, then the data is not accurate. If your child is using it at home, please remind him/her to use it at school only.

Kleenex: We could use some boxes of Kleenex for the classroom. Send the box in with your child.
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HAPPENINGS FOR JAN. 16-20, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we played "the ship is loaded with ..." and shared things that began with the /f/ sound. We identified words that were the same for having a sound in the same position, ie. "fit, cat, lot"- they all end with the /t/ sound.  We identified the short vowel sound for /a/ and identified words having the long or the short sound of /a/, ie. cake versus cat. We identified words with the initial sound of /w/ orally; we discriminated written words by their ending sound, ie. "underline the word that says 'sad' " (the choices of words are 'sad' and 'sap'). We are focusing on sounding the words out as well as identifying lowercase letters that can be confusing (b,d,g,m,n,p). In handwriting we practiced the letters G and Q. In literature we read Ruby Bridges Goes to School: My True Story and discussed how brave Ruby was for going to a school for white children during a time of integration. We read The Hat by Jan Brett. We identified the setting, the characters and the main idea of the story. We also compared the story to The Mitten. We read The Mitten Tree and discussed why the woman was knitting mittens for the children and who may have left wool for her in a basket. In writers' workshop we reviewed what to do when we think we are done with a piece of writing. We began to fill in ideas for writing on a "finding stories in my world" page. This document is a way for us to draw/write ideas we might have that we can use for writing. There are 4 sections for ideas: me, my family, my friends, school. We discussed how we can use this document when we need to think of an idea for writing. For a few days we had listened to a song called, "With My Own Two Hands", which is about what we can do to help or improve our world using our 2 hands. In writers' workshop we thought of an idea that we could do to help the world and added it to the refrain of the song. We will put this in our poetry binder. In independent reading we worked on thinking about the main idea of a book that we read.
MATH
We continued working on addition and subtraction story problems and identifying the number sentence that tells about the problem. We are working on understanding what +, - and = mean in a number sentence. We played a dice game called, Bump. The focus of the game involves combining the numbers on 2 die by counting on from the greater number or just knowing the sum (2 and 2 is 4). In stations we focused on: representing addition and subtraction story problems and writing the number sentence; sequencing and identifying numerals to 20; combining the numerals on 3 die; identifying numerals and their sequence on Starfall Math. We have been playing some rote counting games that involve knowing a sequence of numbers out of order. One student counts from 61-63, the next student counts the next 3 numbers, and so on until a student says 70. This student sits down and the count begins again with 61. This helps students become comfortable with different sequences of numbers.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed what it means to cooperate and shared different ways that we cooperate in the classroom. We discussed the importance of cooperating with each other and related it to including others. In Social Thinking we discussed what expected and unexpected behaviors are. We modeled some unexpected behaviors and discussed why they were unexpected and what would be expected behavior in the situation.
CHOICE TIME
At the collage table we are creating our own mitten story with animals using a cut out mitten and pictures of animals. We are dictating the story to be attached to our collage. At hands on we are doing a dot-dot of 4 different mitten designs. In the listening center we have the story, The Mitten.

EXTRA

Recycled Materials: Thank you so much for all of the recycled materials! We are all set for materials for now. I'll let you know if we need more in the future.
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HAPPENINGS FOR JAN. 9-13, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we identified the long sound of /e/ and /u/. We brainstormed words having each of these sounds in them: eagle, eat, unicorn, use. We also identified the initial and final sounds in words focusing on the sounds /j/ and /f/, both orally and written. In literature we have begun an author/illustrator study of Jan Brett. We read Annie and the Wild Animals and The Mitten. For both stories we focused on her use of borders to add more to the story. For The Mitten we identified the setting, characters and the main idea of the story. We read 2 books about Martin Luther King, Jr., and learned about his life and work for our country. We added 'this' to our word wall. In writers' workshop we moved from our journal to our writing folder. We talked about small moments and how we can use small moments to draw and write. We thought about activities that we do on a snowy day and recorded our ideas on a sheet full of snowflakes. Then we chose one of the small moments and drew and wrote about it. We will be focusing on small moments to help us with ideas. Our writing will be ongoing from each time we have writing. We illustrated the poem, "The Mitten Song". We illustrated mittens, highlighted sight words and wrote the word 'the' in the poem. In independent reading we learned about the importance of pointing to the words as we read. This ensures that we read all of the words.
​MATH
We worked on representing story problems using ourselves and cubes. We focused on the addition and subtraction (minus) symbols and what they mean. For the story problems we identified if the problem was an addition or a subtraction problem. We worked on combining 2 or 3 die and adding on to an amount that we knew. When using 3 die we focused on identifying a combination that we knew (ie. 3 and 2) and then adding on 4. Then we made a number sentence for a couple of dice rolls to understand the use of the symbols, ie. 3+2=5. In stations we focused on: solving addition and subtraction story problems; sequencing teen numbers; making the balance equal using different materials in the buckets; working on Symphony Math on the iPad. We worked on a STEM activity involving creating a tower of Solo cups as a class. The week before we explored building towers with the Solo cups in small groups. As a class we built a tower using only the cups. When we were done, we shared what we noticed and thought about whether our tower could be taller (it had 3 rows of cups, starting with a row of 8 cups). One student shared an idea about starting the tower with 5 cups on the bottom row. The student said this would allow more cups for building more rows to make the tower taller. We tried it this way and did create a taller tower! 
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed the importance of including others. We shared how we feel when we are not included in a game or activity. We brainstormed ways that we could join a group or ways that we could include others.
CHOICE TIME
At the letters table we are working on Lexia on the iPads. At the art table we are making a resolution for the rest of our Kindergarten year; something we want to learn how to do or something we want to learn how to do better. At the hands on table we focused on gripping the marker with the correct grip and coloring spaces with small movements of the marker.

At Book Buddies we read I Am Snow and made paper snowflakes with our book buddy.

​EXTRA

​Library​: Remind your child to pack his/her library book for Tuesday.
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HAPPENINGS FOR JAN. 2-6, 2017

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we worked on isolating the first sound in a word. We played the "ship is loaded with" and shared words beginning with /r/. We identified the long sound of /o/ and words having that sound: oval oatmeal, open, oak. We identified the initial and final sounds in words focusing on the sounds /g/ and /r/. In literature we read the story, Squirrel's New Year Resolution. We learned what a resolution is and why some people make one. We read 2 stories about winter and discussed which one was fiction and the other non-fiction: The Snowy Day and It's Winter. We read 2 poems about winter: "Getting Ready" and "The Mitten Song". We added 'on' to our word wall. In handwriting we practiced C and O; these are center start or magic C letters. In writers' workshop we focused on the details for an illustration so that it tells a story without the words. We illustrated and wrote about our vacation news. We illustrated the poem, "Getting Ready", for our poetry binder.
MATH
We summarized our unit on measurement by thinking of how to compare 3 items using a kind of measurement: height, length and weight. We compared a rock, a bottle and a stapler. We shared a way that we could compare the 3 using measurement: line them up by length from shortest to longest. We started a new math journal which will focus on addition and subtraction story problems. We will be learning how to write a number sentence that describes the story problem. We illustrated the story of 1 snowman and 3 friends. In stations we worked on: combinations for 5; the plus and minus symbols; comparing weights of items using a balance; sequencing 4 trains of cubes from shortest to longest and writing how many; working on Starfall focusing on length and weight, on the iPad.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we reviewed topics that we have discussed recently and thought about how we're doing understanding and using the concepts: using positive self-talk; calming down strategies; identifying another's feelings from their body language. We learned about compliments and shared how they make us feel when we receive one. We discussed that a compliment should always be truthful and sincere.
CHOICE TIME
At the collage table we are making a tissue window to hang up in our classroom windows. At the science table we are exploring magnets. In the listening center we have the story tape of The Snowy Day.

We celebrated Sophia's birthday!

EXTRA

Library Books: Please help your child pack his/her library book on Tuesday.

Recess: Thank you for helping to pack outside winter clothing in a separate bag. Make sure that your child has gloves/mittens and a hat or hood each day.

Recyclable Materials: If you were collecting recyclable materials for our STEAM projects, please send them in this week. Thank you to everyone that has sent items in!
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HAPPENINGS FOR DEC. 19-23, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued to focus on blending the final sound to the rest of the word to identify the word. We played circle of rhymes and shared words that rhymed with 'tree'. We practiced generating a sentence using a target word- a color word. We reviewed that a sentence is a mini story that tells about something. We identified the initial and final sounds in words focusing on the following sounds: /r/, /n/, /t/. We identified the long sound of 'i' (as in 'ice') and identified words having the long 'a' or long 'i' sound in them. In literature we read some books about December celebrations and discussed how the celebrations were similar and different. We read: Hanukkah Lights, Hanukkah NightsMy First Kwanzaa, and The Legend of the Poinsettia. We added the sight word 'my' to our word wall. In handwriting we practiced the rest of the corner start letters: X, Y, Z. In writers' workshop we illustrated and wrote about a strength that we have in the classroom. We worked on writing a few words to explain our idea. In independent reading we reviewed a 'good ride' book and included one during the reading time.
MATH
We continued with our focus on measurement. We read the story, How Big Is a Foot?, which tells about measuring a bed using 2 different sized feet. We discussed how the measurements were different given the 2 lengths of footprints. We used our own footprints to measure items in the classroom. In our measurement journal we calculated how long a rocket ship was in cubes given its length in popsicle sticks. We reviewed numeral writing and worked on writing numerals to 20 playing dice race with 2 dice and spin and write. In stations we focused on: coding directions into the BeeBot; exploring a pan balance; measuring lines with cubes and popsicle sticks; working on Symphony Math on the iPad.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed making mistakes and how we can learn from making a mistake. We learned that we can look at our mistakes and think about what we would do differently the next time. We also discussed mistakes that we make with friends: saying something we didn't mean to say, bumping into someone by mistake, knocking over a structure. We shared that it's always important to apologize when this happens.
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we are making our own color book- illustrating and writing about things of different colors. At the letters table we are coloring in the sequence of lowercase letters. At the hands on table we are spinning tops. By spinning the tops we are strengthening the 3 fingers we use for our grip on markers and pencils. At the math table we are sequencing 5 objects from shortest to longest: a pencil, a crayon, an eraser, a marker and a pencil. We had Julia's mom and Jonathan's dad help at choice time.

We attended a Choral Concert.

In Book Buddies we read a story about winter and illustrated and wrote about something that we like to do in winter. 

Our greeting this week is "Buon giorno", hello in Italian.

EXTRA

Poetry Binder: Please have your child read the poems and sight words with you. Please return the binder by Wednesday, Jan. 4.

Winter Clothing: Make sure that your child has warm clothing to wear for recess. We will go outside every day. He/she should have: winter jacket; snow pants; boots for snow; gloves/mittens; a hat. Thank you for putting the snow gear in a separate bag; this helps with saving room in the backpack.
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HAPPENINGS FOR DEC. 12-16, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we practiced blending the initial or final sound to the rest of the word to identify the word: h...ouse = house, roo...m = room. This activity encourages us to hear parts of words and blend the parts together. We identified the initial and final sounds in words focusing on the following sounds: /b/, /k/, /d/, /m/, /s/. In literature we read the non-fiction book, Chameleon, and learned about why some chameleons change their color. We compared the book to the book, A Color of His Own, and discussed how they were different. We read When I Feel Angry and identified what made the character angry and what the character did to calm down. We read the story, The Little Engine That Could, and discussed what the message of the story was: keep trying and don't give up. We added 'it' to our word wall. In handwriting we practiced the letters: K, L, U, V, W. In writers' workshop we illustrated and wrote about our weekend. We also wrote about a time or a situation that makes us angry. We focused on how our faces need to show how we feel about the situation. In independent reading we identified types of books for reading as a 'good ride' book, a 'downhill' book or an 'uphill' book. The analogy references riding a bike. An 'uphill' book is a book where we need to stop and try to sound out most of the words; it's very hard and not much fun in terms of trying to read the book. A 'downhill' book is a very easy book that you can read all the words and often have memorized the text; this type of book doesn't give your brain a workout. A 'good ride' book is a book where you can read many of the words but need to stop and sound out some of the words; this type of book is enjoyable to read and challenges you just enough as a reader.
MATH
We continued our focus of length and using the language shorter and longer as we compared objects. In our measurement journal we found and illustrated objects that were longer and shorter than a popsicle stick. We also worked on a story problem involving the length of a teddy bear measured in popsicle sticks and a puppy measured in cubes. We needed to determine which was longer. We began to discuss the concept of height and how it's different from length. We used the language of taller and shorter as we compared ourselves using our height to objects in the classroom. We recorded and posted our findings. In math stations we worked on: coding directions into a BeeBot to navigate a map; measuring objects with cubes; filling a space (a truck) with different lengths of cuisenaire rods; working on Symphony math on the iPad.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Social Thinking we reviewed how we always have thoughts and feelings. We described our thoughts and feelings for some unexpected situations that the teachers acted out- reading a book upside down, looking for a book in the middle of Open Circle, talking with someone while the teacher was talking. We discussed what thoughts and feelings we had about the teacher doing unexpected behaviors. We learned about positive self-talk. We discussed how the little engine (from the story, The Little Engine That Could) encouraged himself to keep trying when it was so hard. We identified what is hard in the classroom and how we could use positive self-talk to encourage us to stay with a task or activity.
CHOICE TIME
We opened the listening center and heard the story, Pete the Cat and His White Shoes. At hands on we colored the gum balls following a color code and worked on using small motions with the marker to color in the space. We practiced holding the marker on the power stripes of the marker; this helps us use the correct grip. In the science area we have color and design tops. We had Julia's dad help at choice time.

We attended a strings and band concert performed by students in grades 3-5.

EXTRA

Open HouseMon., Dec. 19 from 8:15-9 am. Families are invited to visit the classroom with their child and look at his/her work and projects. Please let me know if your child will not have a family member that can attend.

Winter Clothes: Please make sure to send in boots, snow pants, hat, gloves/mittens for your child every day. Please also pack a pair of shoes if your child is wearing boots to school. We will go out for recess every day unless the temperature is too low. Thank you for putting the winter gear in another bag; that has helped packing our bags each day. 
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HAPPENINGS FOR DEC. 5-9, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued to identify the number of syllables in words. We tapped out 2, 3, 4 and 5 syllable words. We are also identifying the number of syllables in our names. We identified the long 'a' vowel sound and words having the long 'a' sound (say, cake, made). We continued to identify the initial and final sound in words focusing on the following sounds: /n/, /l/. In literature we read The Day That the Crayons Talked and identified the problem and solution in the story. We read I Like Colors as a read-aloud and discussed what made the book easier to read: repetitive text, background color for the color word, pictures representing that color which encouraged using 'eagle eye'. We read The Way I Feel which is a collection of poems about different feelings. We discussed how the illustration and text demonstrated each feeling. We added 'at' and 'like' to our word wall. In handwriting we practiced the letters: R, N, M, H. In independent reading we learned a new reading strategy: 'lips the fish'. This strategy encourages the reader to look at and think about the first couple of sounds in a word and try to sound it out.
MATH
We began our study of measurement. We identified different kinds of measurement: length, height, weight. We worked on length and focusing on how to measure and compare objects. With a paper strip we found another student that had the same length strip as our own. We used the vocabulary 'longer' and 'shorter' as we compared our lengths of paper. We learned how to accurately measure an object and why that's important. We used our footprint to measure objects in the classroom. In math stations we focused on: comparing towers of cubes and identifying which has more or less; sequencing 3 towers of cubes; comparing numerals in the game top-it; identifying an amount after a quick look. In our math journal we illustrated the story of seeing a tree with 4 red, 3 orange, and 5 yellow leaves on it. We wrote numerals to tell about the story.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Social Thinking we read the book, Thinking Thoughts and Feeling Feelings . We discussed that our heart is our feelings maker and that our brain is our thought maker. We also discussed that we always have thoughts and feelings and that we need to be aware of others' thoughts and feelings when we're with them.
CHOICE TIME
At collage we are creating and writing about a chameleon changing its color on an object. At the art table we are painting still-life paintings of gourds and Indian corn using the primary colors plus white. We need to mix colors to make colors we need, like purple, dark red, light yellow, brown. At the letters table we're doing a letter dot-dot. We had Jonathan's mom help at choice time.

We had Book Buddies. Together each buddy group created a verse for the poem/song, " A-Hunting We Will Go". They wrote the words and illustrated the idea as well as highlight the sight words. The poem was added to the poetry binder.

EXTRA

Poetry Binder: Please have your child share their poems and read the sight words to you. Please return the binder by Tuesday.

Open HouseMon, Dec. 19 from 8:15-9 am. Families are invited to visit the classroom with their child and look at his/her work and projects.

Winter Clothing: With the colder and snowy weather please make sure that your child has a warm jacket, hat, gloves/mittens, boots and snow pants to wear for recess. It's easier to pack the winter gear in a separate bag. If you want to have your child leave snow pants at school, that is fine. Let us know if you want them to come home for the weekends. 
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HAPPENINGS FOR NOV. 28- DEC. 2, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we practiced blending parts of words and began to identify the syllables in words. We began with words having 2 syllables: tur-key. We learned how to tap the syllables of words on our arm starting from the wrist and moving to the head: wrist-inner elbow-shoulder-head. Each tap corresponds to one syllable. We continued to identify sounds at the beginning and final positions of words focusing on the following sounds: /h/, /t/. We did this with oral and written activities. In literature we read the book, Oh A-Hunting We Will Go, and also read it in the pocket chart. We focused on rhyming word pairs: mouse in a house. snake in a cake> We generated some of our own verses too. We read Mary Wore Her Red Dress and discussed how the illustrations and repetitive text help the reader read each page. We read I Went Walking and compared it to Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See?  In the book A Color of His Own we discussed why the chameleon wanted to be like other creatures in having his own color. We added 'go' and 'we' to our word wall. In writers' workshop we drew and wrote about our weekend news. We are working on writing a few words to tell about the idea using our best ear spelling. We made a class book similar to the book Mary Wore Her Red Dress and wrote/drew about something that we're wearing and its color. In handwriting we have begun practicing the uppercase letters. We practiced F, E, D, P, B. These are all 'frog jump' letters because they start at the top with a big line down and a 'frog jump' back to the top. This formation helps with the correct direction of the letter.
MATH
We continued to focus on which has more, less or the same using objects and numerals. We also focused on identifying how many more or how many less. We played the card game 'top-it' which focuses on the numeral card that is more; we also played the game focusing on which numeral card is less. In stations we worked on: comparing towers and identifying which one was more or less; adding 2 to a rolled die and writing the numeral; comparing 2 inventory bags; identifying an amount after a quick view of it- subitizing the amount. In our math journal we illustrated the story about seeing 5 pumpkins and 3 cats. We wrote numerals to tell about the story. We worked on how to show a number in different ways using dots, the numeral, tallies and showing the amount on a 10 frame.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed how to get calm when we're upset. We learned about the frontal cortex and the amygdala. When we're upset our amygdala is working hard and often interferes with the thinking in the frontal cortex. We shared different ways we calm down at home and at school. We discussed what happens if we don't calm down when we're upset; we sometimes make choices we regret making.
CHOICE TIME
At the letters table we are retelling the story, Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?, using animal figures on the flannel board and reading the book. At the math table we are playing a puzzle math game. In the science area we have color paddles and shaker tubes. The tubes have 2 primary colors in them. When you shake them the colors mix to make a secondary color. In dramatic play we have opened a restaurant. We had Julia's mom help out at choice time.

EXTRA

Walk-a-Thon: Tues., Dec. 6. If you want to contribute $1 for this fundraiser, send it in with your child by Tuesday. We will be walking during part of our recess.

​Open House​: ​Tues., Dec. 20 from 8:15-9 am.​ Families are welcome to visit the classroom with their child and look at his/her projects and work.
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HAPPENINGS FOR NOV. 21-25, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we practiced orally blending parts of words together and identifying the word. For example if the parts are 'tele' and 'vision', the word is 'television'. We continued to identify sounds at the beginning and final positions of words and focusing on the following sounds: /s/, /m/, /p/, /d/. In literature we read Feeling Thankful and learned what children are thankful for as well as recognizing similar ideas to our ideas of being thankful. We read Franklin's Thanksgiving and discussed how Franklin and his family were making sure that their friends had a place to go to on Thanksgiving. We added 'for' to our word wall. In writers' workshop we illustrated the poem, "Thanksgiving", and wrote and illustrated what we are thankful for. In our journal we wrote about our weekend news.
MATH
We practiced counting on by 1 to a rolled die, identifying the number and coloring a feather on a turkey. In stations we worked on: identifying amounts and numbers that are more or less using a more/less spinner; comparing 2 grabs of different color cubes; completing cuisenaire rod puzzles; working on quick images on the iPad.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed what body language is and what we can learn from it. We identified some body language poses and what they might mean. Then we practiced showing how we would feel using our body in certain situations: someone has taken your ball at recess; you were given a present that you had really wanted. We discussed how we felt in each situation and what our bodies did to show that emotion.
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we are making shades of the primary colors by adding increasing amounts of white. At the hands on table we are 'feeding the monster'. The 'monster' is a partially slit open tennis ball which opens when your dominant hand squeezes on the edges of the slit. We practiced opening the 'mouth' and feeding it buttons. The squeezing action strengthens the muscles on the inside of your hand. At collage we are making Pete the Cat and choosing what color shoes he'll wear. We had Ella's dad help out at Choice Time.

We met with our Book Buddies. We played games, did puzzles and built with pattern blocks and geoblocks.

We attended an assembly about being thankful.

EXTRA

Fundraiser on Tues., Nov. 29: On Tuesday, Nov. 29, students will be participating in a walk-a-thon during recess. If possible please have your child bring in $1 to contribute to the fundraiser. The fundraiser is in honor of Jessie Aufman who was a student at Claypit Hill School a couple of years ago and died last January. The money will go towards buying a piece of equipment for the upper playground. We will walk a few laps and walk as a class.

Library on Tuesdays: Please make sure to help your child pack his/her library book on Monday night or Tuesday morning.

​Open House:​ ​Tues., Dec. 20 from 8:15-9 am.​ Families are welcome to visit the classroom with their child and look at his/her projects and work.
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HAPPENINGS FOR NOV. 14-18, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued our focus on identifying the initial and final sounds of words. We identified words ending with /d/ or /m/ using letter cards. We identified words beginning with /p/ and sorted pictures beginning with /p/ or /d/. We focused on the length of words and identified the longer word. We discussed how we can hear more sounds in a longer word, that's what makes it sound like a longer word. In small groups we continued to focus on isolating the beginning or ending sound in words when doing picture sorts or games. In phonics we identified written words by the final sound of /m/ or /d/. In literature we read the poem, "Thanksgiving", and shared what we are thankful for. We read The First Thanksgiving and learned about how and why the Pilgrims came over on the Mayflower and how the first Thanksgiving originated. We read Pete the Cat and His New White Shoes chorally. We added the sight word 'in' to our word wall. In independent reading we learned about the reading strategy, 'Eagle Eye'. This strategy encourages us to use the illustrations on a page to help us read an unknown word. In writers' workshop we illustrated the poem, "Rhymes for You", for our poetry binder. In our journal we illustrated and wrote about our weekend news and topics of our choice. 
MATH
We focused on comparing amounts and determining which amount has more or less as well as how much more or how much less. We compared our name trains and found trains that had more, less or the same number of letters as our own name train. In small groups we compared grabs of cubes and determined how many less one color had than another. We also built towers of cubes based on numeral cards and determined how many less one tower had than another. In math stations we focused on: sorting pattern blocks by how many sides and counting the number of blocks in each pile; comparing name trains and recording names that are shorter, longer and the same number of letters as our own name train; completing cuisenaire rod puzzles; determining an amount (subitizing) on a 10 frame or shown with fingers seen briefly on the iPad. We illustrated a story problem in our math journal: I had 3 apples and 2 bananas. We illustrated the fruits and wrote numerals to explain the amounts of each fruit and how many altogether. We explored rekenreks. We discussed how we would use them as a math tool. We practiced showing amounts using one move to slide over an amount. Each day during our calendar time we are making tallies to show the number of the day.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Social Thinking we read the book, Whole Body Listening, and learned the importance of showing whole body listening when we are talking with others. The story gave examples of listening with your hands, feet, eyes, body and mouth, and how the speaker feels when others are not listening. We have been reinforcing whole body listening in the classroom and encouraging students to think about how their body is listening to others.
SCIENCE
We continued our focus on leaves and looking at size attributes of leaves. With a silhouette of a leaf on a card we found leaves outside that were longer, shorter, narrower and wider than the silhouette leaf. We compared leaves we found for each attribute with others and discussed whether our leaves were the same type of leaf. Then we thought about the shape of leaves. With a leaf collected from outside we sorted our leaf by its shape: heart, star, triangle, paddle, line, oval, pointed oval. We discussed the sort of leaves and shared what we noticed about how the leaves were sorted.
CHOICE TIME
At the collage table we made a leaf rubbing of a leaf from our class tree. We wrote a word to describe its shape. At the letter table we are highlighting the sequence of uppercase letters. At the math table we finished sorting buttons by recording the groups and writing how many in each group. In blocks we built roads and structures for cars with unit blocks. We had Julia's mom help out at Choice Time.

We had a presentation from 2 Wayland fire fighters. We learned about fire safety for when there may be a fire in our home. We learned about fire tools (matches, lighters) which are only to be used by adults. We discussed how lit candles should be in safe places away from curtains and on counters away from children.

We watched the 5th grade rocket launch on Friday. Wow! There were a lot of great rockets soaring in the air!

EXTRA

Early DismissalWed., Nov. 23. School will be dismissed at 12. Lunch will not be served and there is no BASE this day. Please make sure to inform us of your child's dismissal routine this day.

​Open House​: ​Tues., Dec. 20, from 8:15-9 am.​ Families are welcome to come visit the classroom with their child and look at his/her projects and work.

Extra Clothes: Please make sure to return clothes for your child's extra clothes bag if he/she brings home soiled clothes. If you want to send in pants and a long sleeved shirt for the winter months, we'll send home the shorts and t-shirt.

Spoons for Snack: If your child brings a snack that requires a spoon, please make sure to pack a spoon for him/her. We have a limited number of spoons in the classroom.
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HAPPENINGS FOR NOV. 7- 11, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued our focus of the initial and final sounds in words. We identified words ending with the sound /m/ and /s/, and identified words beginning with the /d/ sound. In small groups we are working on isolating the initial and final sounds through picture sorts. We also focused on the length of words, which word is longer when hearing a pair of words- cow or grasshopper. This will lead to identifying syllables in words. In phonics we identified written words by their final sound: "underline the word that says 'ham' ", when given the choices of 'ham' and 'has'. In literature we read the poem, "Rhymes for You", and acted out the motions of the poem. We read Colorful Leaves which is a non-fiction book. We learned how a non-fiction book is set up, its purpose as a book, and learned about leaves. We reread chorally In A Dark, Dark Wood and discussed how the text in the book helps the reader read it. We read Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? chorally. We also read 2 of our class books: "A Trip to Shelburne Farm" and "Halloween Fun". We added the sight word 'you' to our word wall. In writers' workshop we focused on our illustrations having details and are beginning to write labels  to inform the reader about our illustration.
MATH
We learned about tallies and how a tally represents a number. We read Tally O'Malley and learned how a family plays games using tallies to keep track of amounts. We practiced making tallies to show how many feet we have, how many fingers we have, how many legs on a dog, how many toes we have altogether. We began math stations which we'll do twice a week. There are 4 stations that have different math activities. Each group works at 2 stations on a given day. The stations focused on: identifying amounts with more or less and how many more/how many less; identifying dot combinations and recording the numeral; exploring cuisenaire rods; completing puzzles on the iPad. We worked on a problem in our math journal: show a brown cat with three friends. We focused on the illustration and the numbers to show how many brown cats, how many friends and how many altogether.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Social Thinking we finished learning about what other parts of our body need to do to show whole body listening: feet are still; body is facing the speaker; brain is thinking about what the speaker is saying; heart is caring about what the speaker is saying. Listening with our heart and brain are important for us to think about and practice. 
SCIENCE
We observed our class tree and discussed what we noticed about it: thin trunk; many branches; colorful leaves; exposed roots at the base of the trunk. We illustrated the tree for our fall observation.
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we are mixing primary colors (yellow, red, blue) to make secondary colors (orange, green, purple). At the hands on table we are exploring geo-boards and created designs using rubberbands. At the science area we continue to explore leaves and seeds with magnifiers and the observa-scope. In blocks we built marble runs. We had Jonathan's mom help out at Choice Time.

We had Book Buddies. Our 4th grade buddy brought a book and read it. Then we illustrated a scene from the story.

We had a Cultural Enrichment program which played music from Latin American countries. We enjoyed clapping and moving to the rhythm of the music.

EXTRA

Extra Clothes: Now that the temperatures are cooler, families may want to replace shorts and t-shirts in their child's extra clothes bag with a long sleeved shirt and long pants. If you send in the long pants/shirt, we will send home the shorts/t-shirt. Please make sure to send in replacements for your child's bag if they bring home soiled or dirty clothes.
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HAPPENINGS FOR OCT.31- NOV. 4, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on identifying the sound at the beginning or the end of a word. We identified words with the final sound of /s/, brainstormed words beginning with /m/ and sorted pictures by their beginning sound (/s/ or /m/). In phonics we identified written words by their beginning or final sound. We have been working in small groups and focusing on letter fluency for uppercase and lowercase letters. In literature we read the poem, "I Can Read Colors", which includes several sight words as well as color words. We read Listen Buddy which focuses on the importance of listening. We added the word 'is' to our word wall. In writing we made a class book about our Halloween experiences. We had a choice for a writing topic and brainstormed many ideas for writing. The ideas focused on experiences that we have had. We also focused on the importance of details in our illustration and how the illustration should 'tell a story'. We illustrated the poem, 'I Can Read Colors', and highlighted the sight words.
MATH
We finished learning how to write all of the numerals; we practiced '9' and '0'. We practiced writing numerals with a couple of activities: counting and recording the number of Halloween characters and playing roll and record using a dot die. We read Two Little Witches: A Halloween Counting Story and practiced adding one more to an amount. We are working on adding and taking away 1 from a number, and identifying what the number is. We started a math journal and worked on 2 story problems. The focus of the story problems is to illustrate the items and record numerals which explain the problem. One story problem was, "I see two dogs and two cats." We needed to illustrate the cats and dogs and write numerals that explain the story. We thought about how we can group the cats and dogs to provide a way for the reader to see how many easily.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we learned about the importance of listening and what our body needs to do in order to listen well: sit still, listen and not talk, look at the speaker. We learned what a 'school listening look' looks like and discussed times when we should use a 'school listening look'. In Social Thinking we began to learn about whole body listening which encourages us to think with our whole body. We learned about 4 ways of whole body listening: eyes looking at the speaker; mouths are quiet; hands are still; ears are listening. We will learn the remaining ways for whole body listening next week. 
CHOICE TIME
At the collage table we are making leaf creations with leaves, pine needles and some acorns. At the letters table we are matching rhyming pictures. At hands on we are moving a magnetic ball through a maze using a magnet. The magnet is like a small pencil and encourages us to hold it with a pencil grip. In blocks we built with Legos, and with unit blocks and animals. We had Reese's mom, Ella's mom and Nicolas' mom help out at Choice Time.

Our morning greeting this week has been "Bonjour", which is 'hello' in French.
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HAPPENINGS FOR OCT. 24- 28, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
We began to learn about sounds that letters make. We identified the sound of /s/ and identified words beginning with /s/. We sorted pictures that began with /s/ and didn't. In phonics we worked on letter fluency for both uppercase and lowercase letters. This means that we are working on naming the letters out of sequence and uppercase and lowercase letters mixed together. In literature we learned the poem, "Ghosts". We read the story, We're Going on a Leaf Hunt, and identified different types of leaves. We also read It's Fall and identified activities we do in the fall or what happens in nature in fall. We read Fletcher and the Falling Leaves and discussed how Fletcher didn't understand that when a tree loses its leaves in fall, that it's ok. We shared what we might do if we could talk to Fletcher to ease his sadness. We added 'to' to our word wall. In writing we wrote about our weekend news, what we like to do with a friend, and what we like to do in the fall. We continue to work on our illustrations and including details to help tell the story about our idea. We use a picture rubric to help learn important parts to include in the illustration.
MATH
We continued to learn how to write the numerals. We practiced writing 5, 6, 7, and 8. We continued our focus on sorting. We worked in small groups and sorted containers of junk 3 different ways. We also worked in small groups and sorted a collection of leaves that had been collected. Each group decided on a way to sort the leaves, glued the leaves on paper and then labeled the sorts. Each group shared with the class the poster and explained how they had sorted the leaves. We read Clifford's Halloween and designed a costume for Clifford. Then we sorted the costumes by category (spooky, funny, animal, movie/tv character).
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we identified different feelings and how we might know how someone is feeling based on a facial expression. We also shared how our body might look and feel when we are feeling a certain way. We discussed why it's important to think about another person's facial expression; we may be able to help someone if they look sad, frustrated or mad, or share in the happiness of someone who looks happy or excited.
SCIENCE
We took a leaf walk and collected 6 leaves. We chose one leaf and described an attribute about it (color, shape, size, points, texture). We discussed how different trees have different type leaves. We used some of our leaves in a sort with a small group. 
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we began ti dying leaves. At the math table we are sorting a grab of different color unifix cubes and recording what we grab. In the science area we have leaves and seeds to explore with magnifiers and an observa-scope. At letters we retold the story of Chicka Chicka Boom Boom using felt letters on a coconut tree. We pretended in dramatic play. In blocks we built marble runs and created structures with Legos. Ava's mom helped out Choice Time.

We attended the Book Fair.
We had a Bus Evacuation drill and learned safety procedures if there was ever an emergency on or with the bus. We practiced exiting out the emergency exit in the back of the bus.

​EXTRA

​Snack​: Please do ​not ​include candy for snack. If your child would like a piece of candy at school, please include it at lunch.

​Recess​: Please make sure to pack an extra sweater or sweatshirt for your child in case the temperature gets colder. Last week we had some very cold weather.
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HAPPENINGS FOR OCT. 13/14 AND OCT. 17-21

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we found rhyming words in the poems, "Jack-O-Lantern" and "Higglety Pigglety Pop". We played circle of rhymes with the target words, 'bug' and 'book'. In phonics we focused on naming the letters fluently with the games: before and after, what comes next?, finding uppercase and lowercase letters in our poems, and alphaball. We identified the vowels and learned a song to help us remember them. We added "and" and "I" to our word wall. We spent time identifying words and learning that words are separated by spaces. We also began to focus on what a sentence is and generating a sentence about a target word, ie a fruit. In writers' workshop we illustrated the poems, "Pumpkin" and "Jack-O-Lantern", for our poetry binder. In our journal we drew about a time when we were kind, based on the book we read, What Does It Mean to Be Kind? In literature we read From Seed to Pumpkin and learned about the growing cycle of a pumpkin. We read Chicka Chicka Boom Boom and matched the lowercase letters to the uppercase letters.
MATH
We did pumpkin math using our pumpkins for different activities: discussing different ways to sort our pumpkins, determining its width, height and weight. We also predicted and learned whether our pumpkin would sink or float. We recorded our findings in a pumpkin journal. We began to focus on comparing towers of cubes and determining which is tallest and shortest and by how much taller or shorter. We also practiced making towers of cubes by rolling a dot cube and determining how many to add or take away for each roll. For example if a played had a tower of 3 cubes and rolled a 5, how many cubes does the player need to add to make it 5? This game helps to develop fluency of number. We played dot cube plus 1 which also helps to develop number fluency. When the dot cube is rolled, 1 is added to it and the player covers that number. We began learning to write numerals. We practiced writing: 1 2 3 4.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed ways to get calm using 2 different breathing techniques:flower breathing and balloon breaths. We discussed why it's important to get calm and when we might use either of the breathing techniques at school.
In Social Thinking we discussed what a speech bubble and a thought bubble are. We identified times during our day when we would use the thought bubble and the speech bubble. 
SCIENCE
We reviewed the parts of the tree: roots, trunk, leaves and branches. In small groups we matched these words to their respective picture.
CHOICE TIME
We began using the choice board. We learned how to use the choice board and explored different areas and activities. At the art table we are working on our special stars. At the collage table we are making an ABC tree based on the book, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. We are cutting the trunk, leaves and coconuts for the tree and stamping letters to have 'fall out of' the tree. In the block area we built with blocks and used cars one day, and built with lincoln logs and used animals another day. At hands on we made designs on the magnetic disc board.

We had Book Buddies with our 4th grade buddies. We interviewed each other in order to learn about one another.

We celebrated Nicolas' and Lucas' birthdays!

For our morning greeting we are saying "hola" to each other.

EXTRA

Book Fair: Tues., Oct. 25 from 11-11:30 am. If you would like to join us to help your child choose books, meet us at the Book Fair which is set up in the lobby.

Poetry Binder: Your child has brought home his/her poetry binder. Inside the binder is a ring of our sight words for him/her to review and practice reading and finding in the poems and in other texts (ie. a book, cereal box, magazine). Please make sure to put the ring of words back into the binder when your child returns it. We will continue to add words to the ring as we learn them.
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HAPPENINGS FOR OCT. 3- OCT. 7, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued to focus on rhyming. We played 'circle of rhymes' with the target word, 'tree', and 'The ship is loaded with...' with the target word,'cats'. We began to focus on words as a unit and hearing words in a sentence. We counted the words in sentences with 2-3 words. In phonics we identified the vowels (a,e,i,o,u) and learned a song to help us remember them. We played the 'before and after' letter game with Lou using the alphabet. In literature we read and acted out the poem, "Autumn", and learned the poem, "Pumpkin". We are working on using the illustrations for a poem to help us think about what the poem will be about. We read the non-fiction books, Amazing Apples by J. Bauer, and A Butterfly is Born by M. Berger, and learned about apples and butterflies respectively. We added the word, 'the', to our word wall. In writers' workshop we illustrated a part of our field trip and dictated the words to make a class book about our trip. We also illustrated the poem, "Autumn", for our poetry binder.
MATH
We continued our focus on counting and representing sets of objects. We continued our work in our counting books by representing the numbers from 0-6 and above. We began to work with adding or subtracting 1-2 from a set with manipulatives and without. This develops and strengthens understanding of number. For example if there are 8 cubes under a tub and 1 is taken away, how many are left? This is done without seeing the cubes under the tub. We need to rely on our understanding of number.
We began to discuss sorting and what it means to sort. We started with sorting ourselves and figuring out how the class was sorted, ie. tie and velcro shoes, boys and girls, something in our hair and nothing in our hair.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we reviewed our class rules and gave examples for each rule. For homework we needed to discuss rules that we have at our homes and shared them at the next Open Circle. We shared what we noticed about home rules that we shared. Some rules were similar and some were different. We learned and discussed what a non-verbal signal is. We identified some that we will use in our class.
SCIENCE
We had 7 chrysalis hatch into monarch butterflies! We enjoyed watching them fly around in the butterfly tent and take the juice from a clementine in the tent. We illustrated the monarch butterfly in our butterfly journal. We released them on the playground so they can acclimate to the outside. We still have 2 chrysalis left.
CHOICE TIME
We opened the dramatic play area. During Choice Time we are learning what materials are in this area and where they belong, and had a chance to play with some friends. At the art area we are beginning to make our special star which tells 5 things that are special about us. At the collage table we are making tissue paper apples for an apple tree. We are rolling the small pieces of tissue with the 3 fingers that we use to hold a writing tool and to hold scissors. We also had a chance to play games and do puzzles in the games area.

We had a great field trip to Shelburne Farm! We picked apples, had a hayride and picked a pumpkin from the patch. We are keeping the pumpkins at school for next week to do some pumpkin math. Then we'll bring them home.

We had Book Buddies with Ms. Postma's 4th grade class. Each of us has 1 or 2 4th graders as a buddy for the year. We met and read books with our buddies this week. During the year we will do projects and activities with our Book Buddy as well as read together.

EXTRA

Snack: Thank you for sending in nutritious snacks for your child. If your child wants to bring in candy to school, they may have it for lunch, but not snack.
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HAPPENINGS FOR SEPT. 26- SEPT. 30, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued our focus on rhyming by matching pictures that rhymed and completing a phrase with a rhyming word. We played 'circle of rhymes' where each student generates a word (real or nonsense) that rhymes with the target word. We made rhymes for "cat" and "pad". In phonics we sequenced letters of the alphabet orally and with letter cards. We played a game with 'Lou" where we found a letter that comes before or after a letter. In literature we read the poems "Shining Apples" and "Autumn". We worked on distinguishing letters from words and focused on the spaces between words. We added 2 sight words to our word wall: a, me. We found these words in the poem, "Shining Apples". In writers' workshop we began drawing/writing in our journal. We illustrated what we did over the weekend and what our favorite toy is. We worked on details for our illustrations and referred to a drawing rubric. We illustrated the poem, "Shining Apples", for our poetry binder.
​MATH
We continued our focus on counting sets of objects and recognizing amounts by the formation. We read, Anno's Counting Book, which focuses on matching sets of objects in each illustration to a number, ie. 3 houses, 3 trees, 3 people on page 3. We practiced counting the objects on the larger numbers (5-10) and discussing how it's important to have a strategy for counting when the objects are randomly placed on the page. We started our own counting books by illustrating objects that correspond to the number on the page. We began work with 10 frames by learning how to build numbers on a 10 frame. We used junk to fill a number shape card, counted the junk and matched a numeral to the shape card. We worked with inventory bags which focuses on organizing and counting a set of objects, and recording the amount. We played match up with dot cards which focuses on identifying the number of dots on a card and matching it to another dot arrangement of the same number. We discussed how we can "see" an amount without counting it (subitizing) and then add on the other dots. 
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed the importance of knowing each other's names and how to say someone's name. We went around the circle saying our name one at a time and then having everyone say "Hi" to that person. We also discussed how we have some similarities and some differences. We shared ways in which we are different. We played the "stand up/sit down" game to help us learn more about each other: who has a brother/sister, who likes to draw, who likes spicy food, and more. At the end we shared what we learned about each other.
SCIENCE
We reviewed the 2 types of trees: broadleaf and conifer. We learned the parts of a tree: roots, trunk, branches, leaves. We took a walk outside and found the parts of tree on a broadleaf and a conifer tree.
All of our caterpillars have made a chrysalis. We are waiting for them to hatch into monarch butterflies!
CHOICE TIME
We continued to explore the areas and do the projects from last week during choice time.

We found out this past week that Sarai has moved to another town and will no longer be in our class. We shared how we felt about her leaving and shared other situations when we had to leave a friend or a friend left us. 

EXTRA

Field Trip: Wed., Oct. 5, we will be going to Shelburne Farm. Please make sure to dress your child in clothes appropriate for the weather that day. Your child needs to bring a nut-free snack in a disposable bag for the trip.

Cooler Weather: With the changing temperatures during the day, please think about packing a sweatshirt or jacket in your child's backpack in case he/she needs it for recess.
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HAPPENINGS FOR SEPT. 19- SEPT. 23, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued our focus on rhyming and identifying sounds. We identified the rhyming words in the rhyme, "1 2 Buckle My Shoe" and matched pictures that rhymed. We also generated rhymes by completing a phrase with a rhyming word, ie. "a goat sails a ____ (boat)". We read, Mitten Kitten, and identified the rhyming pairs of words from the illustrations. We practiced sequencing 3 instrument sounds and identifying the missing sound from 2 sounds played. In phonics we focused on sequencing the letters of the alphabet using letter cards and orally by playing the game, alphaball. In independent reading we continued to explore the book baskets in our classroom. In writers' workshop we illustrated our hope or dream for kindergarten. We illustrated the rhyme, "1 2 Buckle My Shoe", for our poetry binder.
MATH
We focused on counting sets of objects and creating designs with 9 or 10 objects. We discussed how we could see combinations without counting them. For example seeing 3 tiles instantly because of the way they were arranged in the design. We also practiced estimating and counting a set, and then recording how many we had counted. We read the book, Chrysanthemum, and counted 13 letters in her name. Then we made cube trains to represent each of our names. At tables we compared the different lengths of our names. We finished the activity by writing our name on a strip and completing a graph about the length of our names. We discussed what we noticed about our names and comparing their lengths.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we reviewed our classroom rules and discussed how they will help us enjoy our classroom and achieve our hopes and dreams. We each signed the list of rules and agreed that we'll do our best to follow them.
We learned what we'll be doing in Open Circle this year. We practiced getting in and out of the circle that we'll make each time we meet.
​SCIENCE
We have been observing our monarch caterpillars for the past 2 weeks and sharing what we notice. Last week some of the caterpillars changed into a chrysalis! This was very exciting! We are recording the stages of the caterpillar in a monarch butterfly journal. We drew the caterpillar and the chrysalis.
CHOICE TIME
We opened up the games area! Groups of students explored the games and puzzles, how to play the games and where the materials belong on the shelf. We also created pictures or designs with bingo markers, made balloon shapes by twisting pipe cleaners around a cylinder block (this is to strengthen the pincher grip of the dominant hand), and built with legos in the block area.

EXTRA

Field Trip Permission: Please make sure to return the permission slip and check by Friday, Sept. 30.

Emails during the Day: If you need to get a message to me during the school day that pertains to dismissal, please contact the office and have them give me the message. I don't always have a chance to read my email during the day and don't want to send your child to the wrong destination. Thank you!

Cooler Weather: With some cooler weather coming please think about packing a sweater or sweatshirt in your child's backpack in case he/she needs it at recess. 
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HAPPENINGS FOR SEPT. 12- SEPT. 16, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
We began to focus on rhyming and identifying words that rhyme in songs and poems. We identified the rhyming words in the song, "This Old Man", and in the poem, "Kids in the Tub". We learned the song, "Down by the Bay", and began to generate pairs of rhyming words to sing in the song, ie. cat wearing a hat, dog sitting on a log. We practiced sequencing 2 and 3 sounds by  listening to instruments played while our eyes were closed. This develops our listening and sequencing skills for hearing sounds. In phonics we found uppercase and lowercase letters in the poem, "Kids in the Tub". We sang the alphabet song with Lou to certain letters. We played 'alphaball' and sequenced the alphabet orally. In writers' workshop we made our first class book about ourselves by drawing a self-portrait and writing our name. We illustrated the poem, "Kids in the Tub", for our poetry binder. We began independent reading and learned the rules of how to look at a book quietly during this time. We are exploring the different book baskets in our classroom library. During our story time we heard 2 books which focus on the importance making an effort to meet new people and not to judge someone by how they look. We read, Yo! Yes!, and, What's Under Your Hood, Orson?, which focused on these topics. During our Morning Meeting we are learning how to: greet one another; talk with a partner about a topic; share ideas to the group; participate in a group game; and read the message each day. 
MATH
We continued our exploration of manipulatives which included junk boxes, transportation vehicles and ceramic tiles. After each math time we shared what we noticed about the manipulative we had explored. We shared how we could sort them, how they were the same or different from one another, and how we counted them into groups. We created an attendance stick for our class and discussed how the number of cubes on the stick should match the number of students in our class on that day. We played the game, 'Count and Sit'. This game involves counting to a target number, stopping and then beginning the count again to the target number. If a student says the target number, he/she sits down in the circle and the next student begins the count again. As we become more familiar with the game, we will practice predicting who will be the last one standing.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we brainstormed what rules we should have for our classroom in order to work and play, and accomplish our hopes and dreams for the year. 
CHOICE TIME
We opened up the block area! Groups of students are having a chance to discover what is in the block area, play with some of the materials and learn where the materials belong. We also painted with watercolor paints; created a strip collage; creating designs with pattern blocks in a triangular or hexagonal frame.

We had our first School Meeting.

EXTRA

Picture Day: Mon., Sept. 19, is Picture Day. Please make sure to return the picture form for your child.
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HAPPENINGS FOR SEPT. 6- SEPT. 9, 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
We learned a couple of chants to develop rhythm and rhyme. We learned "Mumbo Jumbo" and "Boom Chicka Boom". For "Mumbo Jumbo" we identified the rhyming words and created different ways to keep the beat. For "Boom Chicka Boom" we practiced echo response and using different voices. We read the poem, "Kids in the Tub", and discussed how the illustrations help us know what some of the words are. We also acted out the poem to develop an understanding of the meaning of the text. We heard the book, Pete the Cat Rocking in My School Shoes, and read some of it chorally. For phonics we met Lou and learned how to sung the alphabet song a different way. 
MATH
We read the book, First Day, Hooray!, by N. Poydar. We discussed the feelings of some of the characters on their first day of school and then identified our own feelings. We graphed our feelings and then discussed what we noticed. Many students were excited! We explored some manipulatives that we'll be using this year: pattern blocks, tiles, counting bears. Ms. Lepow, the math coach, came in and read us a story about counting sea creatures in the ocean. Ms. Lepow will visit our classroom during the year to participate or lead math activities.
CHOICE TIME
We began to explore some materials in some of the areas in the classroom: markers and stencils, playdough, unfix cubes, magnetic letters. Each week we'll open up an area to learn what is in that area, how to use the materials and where to put them when we're finished.

During our morning meeting we are playing games and doing activities to learn each other's names and to get to know each other. We began to "greet" each other by saying "good morning" to each person sitting next to us.

​EXTRA

​Picture Day​: Mon., Sept. 19. Please make sure to send in the picture envelope by then.
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HAPPENINGS IN JUNE 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we practiced generating rhymes for a target word. In phonics we learned about the silent 'e' and how it makes the first vowel 'say it's name'. We made new words by adding the silent 'e': bit-bite, cut-cute, at-ate. We also made new words in the pocket chart by changing the first consonant for the rimes '-ave' and '-ive' (ie. save, wave, hive, dive). We added words to the word wall: come, her, have, she. In writing we finished our stories. We wrote a 'thank you' note to our Book Buddy and included something that we appreciated about our buddy. We illustrated some poems for our poetry binder. In independent reading we shared the main idea of a book that we read with a peer at our table.
MATH
We focused on adding and subtracting within 10 using manipulatives. We illustrated number stories using pictures, numbers and words to show how we solved the problem. We continued using number bonds to show several combinations for a number within 10, ie. 3+4=7, 2+5=7. We practiced illustrating the reverse of a number sentence and learning that both ways show the same sum (1+6=7, 6+1=7). We practiced adding 3 numbers and combining numbers we know instantly and counting on the 3rd number. For example if the numbers were 1,3 and 6, I know that 6+1=7 and then would count on the 3 to get 10.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we solved a couple of classroom problems that were in the 'problem box'. We acted out a solution to demonstrate the type of voice and facial expression we might use to solve the problem. We spent the last week discussing the end of the year, our thoughts about the year and what we are looking forward to and are unsure about for next year. In our final Open Circle we shared a 'wish' for our classmates in Room 104. Many friends hoped that everyone would have a good summer and first grade class.
SCIENCE
We learned about paper and 10 different kinds of paper: wax paper, tissue, paper towel, tagboard, newsprint, drawing paper, chipboard, kraft, corrugated paper, corrugated cardboard. We explored some of the paper and discussed whether it would be good for writing or drawing on. We also explored what happens to paper when it has a drop of water on it and when it is soaked overnight. We illustrated our class tree for a spring entry and wrote about something we noticed about the tree.
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we made star print t-shirts. At collage we created a collage using shapes we had brought in for math. At letters we made a pull-thru with with the rime '-ed'. At hands on we made a June calendar. At the science we explored our sense of hearing by matching sound boxes and listening to the vibration from tuning forks. At the math table we explored geo-blocks and cuisenaire  rods with bear counters.

In Book Buddies we shared our thank you note and read with our buddies.

We had fun with Stuffed Animal Day! We illustrated a picture and wrote about our stuffed animal. At gym our stuffed animals joined us for some games. At independent reading we read to our stuffed animal.

June birthdays: Clark
Summer birthdays: Samantha, Olivia
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​HAPPENINGS IN MAY 2016

​LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued to practice segmenting and blending phonemes in words. This skill helps with writing words and identifying unknown words when reading. We reviewed how to identify syllables in words and tapped out 1-4 syllable words on our arm. This skill helps when writing multi-syllabic words and hearing the phonemes. We practiced changing the initial, medial and final phonemes in words, orally. We added several words to our word wall: as, has, be, no, go, one, two, all, said. The focus is to read all of the words but we also practice using them in our writing. In handwriting we finished practicing the lowercase letters. We are practicing writing our first and last names with an uppercase start and lowercase letters. In literature we focused on making a prediction of a story, identifying the characters and setting, and identifying the main idea. In reading we learned the strategy "tryin' lion". With this strategy we work hard to use all of the strategies we know to sound out a word. During independent reading we share a book with a partner or group and tell about the book and why we liked the book. In writing we wrote stories about an event or about a topic we are knowledgeable about. We discussed how to make the cover connected to the story with the title and illustrations on the cover. We also discussed how add details to our writing to make an idea interesting and clear.
​MATH
We focused on knowing all of the combinations for 5. We worked on addition and subtraction story problems and how to include illustrations, numerals/number sentences and words to solve the problem. We worked on adding and subtracting within 10 using manipulatives and discussed how to group the manipulatives (the 5 way) to help us see how many. We also learned how to show combinations or parts for a number using a number bond. Setting up the materials in this way provides a good visual to understand what makes up a number. We also worked on showing teen and higher numbers using 10's and 1's.
​SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we created a problem box for us to draw or write about problems that we experience in Kindergarten. We have used the problems to practice using the problem solving steps during Open Circle. We have practiced role playing solutions to practice using an appropriate voice and body language. We reviewed the importance of listening to each other and how to show others that we are listening to them, ie., by asking questions, nodding, rephrasing. We also practiced creative thinking by thinking of different ways to use a clipboard and a sink stopper. We shared that when you think creatively, you sometimes brainstorm more solutions to problems.
SCIENCE
We continued our focus on wood and looked at wood shavings and sawdust. We made sawdust by sanding a piece of basswood. We did an experiment with sawdust and wood shavings in water. We learned that the sawdust absorbed the water quickly and sank while the wood shavings took more time to absorb the water and sink. We made plywood by gluing several pieces of wood together. We discussed how strong the wood becomes when there are several pieces glued together. We began our unit on the 5 senses. We identified how each of our senses works and how important they are to our daily lives.
CHOICE TIME
In dramatic play we opened up our grocery store, the Star Shop. We are enjoying buying and selling groceries as well as restocking the shelves. Thank you to everyone who sent in food containers for our store! In blocks we continue to explore building different domino paths with the unit blocks. At the art table we crated our houses that we put up on a map. At collage we made a Look Book which encourages the reader to use their sense of sight as they look at a piece of a picture. At the math table we graphed our eye color. At letters we learned how to use Raz Kids on the iPad. At the science table we explored the sense of sight and sense of touch with Braille items, various kaliedoscopes, magnifiers.

In Book Buddies we illustrated our imaginary farms.

May birthdays: John, Brodie

EXTRA

Open House: Thurs., June 9, from 8:15-9:15 am. Families are invited to come and visit the classroom.

Snack: Please remember to pack a nut-free snack for your child every day.
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HAPPENINGS IN APRIL 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued our focus on segmenting and blending. Orally we made new words by changing either the final phoneme (the word is 'cat'- change the /t/ to a /p/, what's the word? 'cap') or the vowel ( the word is 'pat'- change the /a/ to a /o/, what's the word? 'pot'). This activity requires us to segment the word and identify where the phoneme is and then to blend the new phoneme to know the word. In phonics we identified the sound of 'y' (as in yellow) and the short vowel sound for 'e'. We built words in the pocket chart by changing the initial, medial or final sound in a word. We are focusing on all of the vowel sounds as we make new words. We added words to our word wall: little, here. We also identified the rime and ending, "-ing", and have added it to the word wall as a reminder. In reading we learned the reading strategy, 'skip it, skip it'. With this strategy a reader 'skips' the unknown word and reads to the end of the sentence. Then with some context of the sentence the reader goes back and tries the word again, using the other strategies and thinking about what word would make sense. In literature we continued reading and reciting nursery rhymes. We also read fairy tales and learned about features of a fairy tale that make it a fairy tale. We worked on identifying the characters, the setting and the main idea or problem of each fairy tale. In handwriting we continued to learn and practice writing lowercase letters. In writing we are beginning to write stories about an experience we have had or a topic that we are knowledgeable about. We are identifying the beginning , middle and end of the story and writing/illustrating each part.
MATH
We focused on shapes: 2 and 3 dimensional. For 2 dimensional shapes we focused on naming the following shapes: circle, square, rectangle, triangle, hexagon, rhombus, trapezoid. We did activities to complete a puzzle with the shapes, to trade shapes for other shapes (3 triangles can make 1 trapezoid), identify the sides and angles/corners of shapes, and find these shapes in our classroom. For 3 dimensional shapes we focused on naming the following shapes: sphere, cube, cone, rectangular prism, cylinder. We focused on identifying the faces of each shape and matching a face to a 2 dimensional outline. We used 3 dimensional shapes to make other 3 dimensional shapes. We also looked for 3 dimensional shapes in our classroom. We have begun to work on fluency for 5. This means knowing all of the combinations for 5 and being able to identify a part when the other part is known, ie. if there are 5 balls and I see 2 balls, how many are missing?
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we practiced solving problems using the problem solving strategy we learned. We acted out some solutions to the problems and discussed what the 'actor/actress' did well to solve the problem.
In Social Thinking we reviewed expected and unexpected behaviors when we read ​David Goes to School​. We identified the behaviors that David did that were unexpected. Then each of us wrote and illustrated what David should have done, ie the expected behavior. We read Standing in Another's Shoes by S. Debell, and learned what it means to 'stand in another's shoes' and to be empathetic towards others. We learned about another 'unthinkable', glass man. Glass Man causes us to have a big reaction to a small problem or situation. We discussed that when we feel that we're going to have a big reaction we can use some of the calming strategies we've learned (flower breaths, short walk, straw breaths).
SCIENCE
We continued with our study of wood and explored how the other kinds of wood react when put into a tub of water (they float). We did a STEAM activity involving wood and our knowledge of wood in water. With a partner we had to design a way to get a piece of wood to sink using a variety of materials: clay, popsicle sticks, paper clips, jewels, rubber bands, straws. Each pair decided what materials to use, drew a design of their plan, and created their structure. Then we tested each groups structure. We discussed what we noticed and why some structures sunk or partially sunk and others floated. There was a lot of thoughtful observations and conversations.
CHOICE TIME
Thank you to the parents that have come in and helped us at choice time! At the art table we made a collage using a 2 dimensional shape integrated into an illustration, ie. a rectangle used as the base of a truck. At the collage table we are making puppets for retelling the story of The Three Billy Goats Gruff. At the math table we are drawing and labeling shapes with 3 corners and shapes with 4 sides. At the letter table we made a pull-thru for words having the -ug rime. At hands on we made an April calendar, practicing writing the numerals.

We had Book Buddies. We read the story, Harvey Potter's Balloon Farm, which is a story about a man who grows different shapes, colors and designs of balloons. Each buddy group brainstormed what imaginary farm they wold want "to grow". When we meet in May each buddy group will illustrate and label their imaginary farm.

We had a cultural enrichment program (just for Kindergarten) called Rhythm Kids. We learned about some West African drums and some unusual instruments that created sounds as we traveled to "Africa".

April birthday: Sofia

EXTRA

Library: Please remember to have your child bring in his/her library book on Thursdays. We will not have library this Thursday as we have our field trip.

Empty Food Containers: Please send in any empty/clean food containers or boxes for our grocery store that we are setting up in dramatic play.

Recess: Although the weather is gradually getting warmer, it can still be chilly when we go out mid-morning. Please think about putting a sweater or sweatshirt in your child's backpack just in case he/she needs another layer of warmth.
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HAPPENINGS IN MARCH 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on segmenting and blending sounds in words. We primarily worked with 2-3 phoneme words but have also practiced with 4 phoneme words. These activities were done both orally and with the written symbol. These skills strengthen our reading and writing skills. We also worked on replacing the initial or final phoneme in a word to make a new word, ie. switch the 't' in "hat" with a 'd', makes "had". In phonics we identified the sounds for: z, w, v and short 'o' and 'u'. We added some words to our word wall: he, did, on, at, are. In reading we learned a new strategy, 'chunky monkey'. This strategy helps identify a 'chunk' or part of the word we know and then add the rest of the sounds. We started a unit on nursery rhymes. We identified the rhymes, acted them out and sang some of them. In literature we focused on identifying the characters, setting and main idea of a story we read. We began literacy centers which is a time when we focus on literacy skills: reading a book and discussing it; responding to the book with words and illustrations; using a phonemic awareness program on the iPad; illustrating a poem/song; playing a game focusing on a specific phonemic skill.
MATH
We focused on 2 dimensional shapes. We identified and worked with the following shapes: square, rhombus, triangle, circle, hexagon, trapezoid. We focused on using shapes to form other shapes and identifying shapes in different orientations. We made a hexagon using a variety of shapes, ie. 2 trapezoids, 6 triangles, a trapezoid with a rhombus and triangle, and several other combinations. We also found these shapes in our environment/classroom. We worked in our math journal solving addition and subtraction story problems. We also illustrated a picture that represented an equation. We worked on writing equations for addition and subtraction story problems.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we learned about, discussed and practiced the problem-solving steps using the traffic light as a guide. We identified each step and the importance of thinking through each step to help solve a problem. We practiced solving a couple of problems using the steps and acted out how it might look using the solutions we had brainstormed. In Social Thinking we discussed the importance of following the "group plan". When we follow the "group plan" we work together with others and do what is expected; we accomplish the goal. We discussed how others feel about us when we follow the "group plan"; they have good thoughts and feelings about us. We discussed how 'rock brain' can sometimes interfere and cause us not to follow the "group plan".
SCIENCE
We began our unit on wood. We learned about 5 different kinds of wood: pine, basswood, redwood, plywood, particleboard. We learned that plywood (or 'sandwich' wood) and particleboard are man-made and made of pieces and parts of wood. We had a 'wood hunt' in our classroom and labeled items in the room that are made of wood. We explored what happens to wood when it gets wet with drops of water and then placed in a tub of water. We learned that some wood absorbs water more quickly than others.
CHOICE TIME
Thank you to the parents that have come in and helped us at choice time! We appreciate your help and time. At the art table we made a picture incorporating a shape into the illustration and writing about how we created specific item in the picture. At the collage table we made a clock representing 'Hickory Dickory Dock'. At the math table we made a number book using the rhyme, '1,2 Buckle My Shoe'. At the letters table we recited nursery rhymes using flannel board pieces. At the hands on table we did some dot-dots focusing on different nursery rhymes. In the science area we continued to explore the different kinds of wood and how it reacts to drops of water.

We had Book Buddies and read about spring. Then we illustrated something from the book about spring or what we like about spring.

We had a wildlife program and learned about different raptors.

March birthdays: Lila, Kavya, Izzy

EXTRA

Supplies: Thank you very much for the boxes of Kleenex and sponges! They have been helpful in trying to keep the germs away. Currently we are all set with both.

Extra Clothes: Please make sure to send in replacements for your child's extra clothes if they bring some soiled ones home. 

​Book Fair​: We will visit the Book Fair on Mon., April 11, from 11:30-12.
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HAPPENINGS IN FEBRUARY 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on identifying the ending sound in words. We worked on segmenting words in to their phonemes (sounds) and counting the number of sounds in words. We practice tapping and counting the sounds on our fingers (using the thumb as the base on which the other fingers tap on). For example 'time' has 3 phonemes ( t-i-m, these are the sounds you hear when you isolate each sound); 'tie' has 2 phonemes ( t-i ). We have worked on blending sounds in words to make a word, ie. b-a-t (short 'a' sound) makes 'bat'. For both of these exercises we are listening to the sounds in the words, not looking at the letters. We have also practiced blending sounds using written letters and blend each sound separately and then blend the sounds together. These skills are important for reading and writing. In phonics we identified the letters 'G', 'F'', and short 'a' and 'i'. We added 'do' to our word wall. In handwriting we finished practicing all of the uppercase letters. Next month we will begin to learn how to write the lowercase letters. In writers' workshop we continued to write about our weekend news and other experiences we have had. We are working on writing a sentence, using spaces to separate our words and using punctuation to end our sentence. We did some fiction writing about our mitten collage. In literature we continued to read books written and illustrated by Jan Brett. We worked on identifying the characters, the setting and the main events of the story.
MATH
We celebrated the 100th day of school! We had fun doing activities around the number 100. We continued working on addition and subtraction story problems- representing the problem with materials or drawings and writing the equation for the problem. We have worked on recognizing combinations of 5 and 6 using different materials and explaining how we know there are that many. For example looking at a design of 5 toothpicks a student may see a combination of 2 toothpicks and 3 toothpicks within the design and knows that the amount is 5. This helps to build number sense for numbers. We have also worked on teen numbers- naming teen numbers and understanding that a teen number has a group of 10 and some, ie. 16 has a group of 10 and 6 ones. We used the ten frames and rekenreks to build the number numbers and discuss the parts.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed what a friendship is, what friends do together, what problems friends sometimes have and how to keep a friendship going. We also discussed why it's important to show respect for each other.
In Social Thinking we learned about 'Superflex' and the 'Un-thinkables'. 'Un-thinkables' are types of behavior that influence us in social situations and cause us to behave in ways that are not helpful or friendly. We learned about 'rock brain' who causes us to be stuck on what we want to do and makes us inflexible. 'Superflex' is a way of thinking that helps us to 'overcome' the 'un-thinkables'. We can all be 'superflex' to overcome the 'un-thinkable' and do what's expected.
SCIENCE
We continued to explore and learn about magnets. We worked on a STEM lesson about building a bird feeder using certain materials. We worked with a partner or partners and collaborated to build a bird feeder using paper towel tubes, styrofoam plates, yarn, toothpicks, popsicle sticks, toilet tubes, egg cartons, glue and tape. Each group drew a picture of their plan and then built the feeder. We tried to put them out one day but had to bring them in because of the strong wind. We'll put them out again and observe how they serve as a feeder. We discussed that it is ok to have the feeder not work. This will be information on what the group might do differently if given the chance to do the project again.
CHOICE TIME
Thank you to all of the parents that have come in to help at choice time and at our 100 day celebration! We really appreciate your help!
At the art table we painted pairs of mittens for our tree in the classroom. We also decorated bags for our valentines. At the collage table we made an armadillo (a follow up to the book, Armadillo Rodeo, by J. Brett). We made heart creatures using hearts as a part of an animal or insect. At the math table we worked on placing number tiles into a 100 grid. At the letters table we made our own letter book.

We had Book Buddies and illustrated winter poems with them.

February birthdays: Parker and Kyle

EXTRA

Snack: Please check labels of granola type bars. Some bars have traces of peanuts or have been made in a machine that has been exposed to nuts. Children need to bring in nut-free snacks.

Math Family Fun Night: Thurs., March 3, from 6:30-7:30 pm, at the Loker School.
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HAPPENINGS IN JANUARY 2016

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on blending the initial sound with the rest of the word and identifying the word, ie., d...inner. This is the beginning of learning how to blend sounds in words. We have begun to isolate the initial sound or the final sound in a word. This is the beginning of learning how to segment sounds of words. These skills are important for reading and writing. In phonics we have identified all of the long vowel sounds. We will begin to identify the short vowel sounds next. We have identified the consonant sounds: /b/, /k/ for C, /r/. We added some words to our word wall to use during reading and writing: my, am, it, for. In handwriting we practiced writing the letters: Y, Z, C, O, Q, G. We are almost done learning how to write the uppercase letters. We are practicing writing all of the letters from the top, not the bottom. In writing we have illustrated some poems. We have continued to write in our journals about our weekend news and other personal experiences. We continue to focus on finger spaces between our words and including details in our illustration. In independent reading we are practicing using 2 reading strategies: eagle eye, lips the fish. For eagle eye we use the illustration to help us read unknown words; sometimes the illustration can add a clue to the word we don't know. For lips the fish we get our lips ready to say the first sound or 2 of the unknown word. We have been doing an author study about Jan Brett. We have read some of her books and discussed how the borders in some of her books let the reader know more about the story or adds to the story. We have read:​ Annie and the Wild AnimalsThe MittenThe HatArmadillo RodeoFritz and the Beautiful Horses.
MATH
We finished our unit on measuring. We used both standard and non-standard feet to measure objects in the room and compared the measurements. We used a balance to determine what items are heavier than others as well as making the balance equal using different items in the buckets. We have learned how to make tallies and use them to keep track of an amount. We practice writing the number day on the calendar in tallies and then counting by 5's and counting on any single tallies. We have focused on story problems and solving them using cubes. We have worked on addition and subtraction problems. We learned what the + and - symbols mean and have begun to write equations to go with the story problem.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed how to express angry feelings and why it's important to walk away or use our words when we're angry. We also discussed different types of behaviors that others demonstrate and how to handle them. We discussed: double D's (dangerous and destructive behaviors), annoying behavior, and teasing. We identified each kind of behavior, how it makes us feel and what it may look like at school.
In Social Thinking we reviewed expected and unexpected behavior. We discussed whether a behavior was expected or unexpected and why. We also discussed if an unexpected behavior could be expected at another time, ie. yelling - this is ok outside on the playground but not in the classroom.
Before and after Martin Luther King, Jr., day we discussed Dr. King's message and how it affected our lives. We also read about Ruby Bridges and Rosa Parks.
​SCIENCE
We have been experimenting and learning about magnets. We have sorted items that are magnetic and not magnetic, had magnets work through different thicknesses of paper, made a paper clip chain on a magnet.
CHOICE TIME
Thank you to all of the parents that have come in and helped at choice time! We really appreciate your help! At the art table we created our own picture of animals and a mitten. We also designed a pair of mittens using crayon resist ( a follow up to the book, The Mitten Tree). At the collage table we created an armadillo; we also created a mitten as a door decoration outside of our room. At the letters table we used Lexia on the iPads; we are making our own letter book. At the hands on table we are using tweezers to take fruit off of the fruit stand and did a dot-dot of mittens. In dramatic play we are creating play scenarios in a dollhouse.

We had Book Buddies and did two 100 related activities.

December birthdays (I apologize forgetting this last month!): Eliza, Sam, Katelyn, Sophia
January birthdays: Brandon, Ian

RTI: We have begun RTI in math and ELA. RTI stands for Response to Intervention. During RTI students work in small groups with a teacher on a specific skill or skills. Groups work in the classroom or in a nearby room (reading room, conference room). The groups are flexible and change throughout the year. Teachers that are involved include: the reading teacher, special education teacher, TA's and myself.

​EXTRA

100 Collections: Please make sure that your child brings in his/her 100 collection by Thurs., Feb. 4, in the zip-lock bag.

100 Celebration: Tues., Feb. 9, from 9:15-10:30. Please sign up if you are able to help during our celebration of the 100th day of school!

Math Family Fun Night: Thurs., March 3, from 6:30- 7:30 pm, at the Loker School.

Extra Clothes: Please make sure to return clothes for your child's extra clothes bag if they bring home clothing. With the melted snow the ground has been wet at recess and children have wet socks or wet pants if they fall.
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HAPPENINGS IN DECEMBER 2015

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we focused on syllables in words and our names. We identified each syllable of a word and counted how many syllables in a word. We kept track of the syllables by tapping our arm: the wrist, elbow, shoulder, head, opposite shoulder. After tapping out the syllables, we would then blend them to make the word. We focused on identifying the initial and final sounds of words orally and written. We focused on the letter sounds for: N, L, T, long A. We continued to focus on rhyming words and generating a rhyming word for a target word. In phonics we worked on lowercase letter identification. We added the following words to our word wall: like, can, we. In writing we focused on identifying the initial and final sounds in written words as well as using finger spaces to separate our words. We illustrated some poems for our poetry binder and some pages for class books. We also illustrated and wrote our own color book. In literature we focused on predicting and summarizing books we read. We read some books that focused on the December holidays: Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanzaa. In handwriting we practiced writing: N M H K L U V W X.
MATH
We focused on comparing amounts and determining how many more or how many less one pile had than another. We used manipulatives, 10 frames and the rekenrek to practice comparing amounts. We also compared numerals and determined which number was greater or less than. We played top-it and monster squeeze to practice comparing numerals. We have been working on identifying naming numerals from 1- 20. We practiced counting on from different numbers and counting by 5's and 10's. We began our study of measurement. We have worked on measuring the length, height and weight of objects. For length and height we practiced using non-standard units of measurement, our footprints.
SCIENCE
We observed trees in winter and compared how different they were from the fall trees. We noticed that some trees (oak) still had their leaves. We also discussed how evergreen/conifer trees do not loose their leaves all at once like broadleaf trees. They loose their leaves gradually over time.
During our unit on color we observed how primary colors mix to make secondary colors using the color tubes and doing the color explosion experiment.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we focused on compliments, cooperating and speaking up. We discussed how a compliment is like a gift- it makes you feel good and should be returned with a "thank you". We identified ways that we cooperate as a class and how important it is when we all work together towards a common goal. We discussed 4 goals for speaking up: speak loud enough, speak clearly, speak towards the person, speak slowly.
CHOICE TIME
Thank you to all the parents that have been able to come in and help us out at Choice Time! We appreciate your time and energy! At the art table we made our own color books and 5 Little Monkey puppets. At collage we made beautiful tissue paper windows for our windows. At math we compared grabs of color cubes as well as measured objects with cubes. At letters we sequenced lowercase letters and completed rhyming puzzles. At science we did a color explosion experiment and saw primary colors explode to make a secondary color. At the hands on table we practiced using our 3 working fingers to complete geo-board puzzles. In dramatic play we have enjoyed "working and eating at" our class restaurant.

We had Book Buddies. We brainstormed ideas for completing the poem/song "A-Hunting We Will Go". We thought of an animal and an object that we could put it in, ie. "I'll catch a mouse and put it in a house." The poems will be in our poetry binders.

EXTRA

Recess: Please make sure to pack or have your child wear boots now that we have some snow on the ground. This will help keep your child's feet dry and warm and avoid tracking in dirt from the playground.

Snack: Please make sure to pack your child a nutritious snack every day (crackers, fruit/vegetables, cheese or yogurt, drink). Also make sure that the snack is nut-free.
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WEEKS OF NOV. 2-6, NOV. 9-13, 2015

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued our focus on rhyming words, specifically generating rhyming words. We focused on the rime in the target word. The rime in 'cat' is '-at'. We have begun to identify the initial and final sounds in words and matching them to specific letter sounds. We have identified the sounds of /s/, /m/ and /d/. In phonics we are connecting the letter sounds to the corresponding letter. We are continuing our work on letter fluency for uppercase and lowercase letters. In literature we read the poems: "I Can Read Colors" and "Apples Peaches". We are focusing on colors and have read some fiction and non-fiction books related to colors: Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?A Color of His Own and Little Blue, Little Yellow by L. Lionni; I Went Walking by S. Williams; Colorful Leaves by M. Fleming; Chameleons. We compared the stories of Brown Bear and I Went Walking about the colors included and the text features. We added some sight words to our word wall: is, see, me. In writers' workshop we illustrated and wrote about our weekend news in our journal. We illustrated the poems, "I Can Read Colors" and "Apples Peaches", for our poetry binder. We illustrated and dictated an idea about our Halloween for a class book. In handwriting we finished the numerals, 0, and have begun the uppercase letters, F E D. The important part for writing the letters and numerals is to always start them at the top.
MATH
We continued our focus of counting a set of objects as well as counting out a specific amount. Both of these activities require different skills. When counting out a specific amount we need to hold on to the number as we count objects and stop at the number. We worked on counting on from different numerals when we played the die +1 and die +2 games. We have begun to compare sets of objects and identifying which has more or less and how many more or less. We made a name graph of  the number of letters in our first names. We analyzed the graph and shared what we noticed and learned from the graph. We worked in our math journal and represented story problems with illustrations, numerals and words.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Social Thinking we learned about expected and unexpected behaviors. We identified when a behavior would be unexpected (yelling to someone across the classroom) and when it would be expected (yelling to someone across the playground at recess). We also identified what thoughts we have when someone is behaving in an expected or unexpected way. In Open Circle we discussed how our body feels when we are upset and what happens in our brain when we are very upset. We learned that the amygdala works very hard when we are upset and prevents the frontal cortex from doing its job of thinking. Thus we act in ways without thinking what we are doing. We shared ways to calm our bodies down at home and at school so that our frontal cortex can help us make better decisions. We also discussed how we all make mistakes and that we can learn from our mistakes.
Every morning we greet each other. This has been a wonderful way for each of us to learn the names of our classmates. It has also been good practice for showing others that we are listening and thinking about them. We practice using a speak up voice and learn to ask someone his/her name if we don't know it. We have done several different greetings: "hello", "hi", "hola", "bonjour".
SCIENCE
We took a leaf walk and focused on the dimensions of leaves- the length and width of leaves. We collected some leaves for a collage project.
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we mixed primary colors (red, blue, yellow) to make secondary colors (orange, purple, green). We also learned how to make shades of colors by mixing increasing amounts of white. At the collage table we made leaf creations using leaves and acorn tops and adding a background to create a scene. At the math table we compared our name to classmates' names and found names that were shorted, longer and the same as our own name. At the letters we sequenced uppercase letters. At the hands on table we played puff soccer. We used a bulb syringe to blow air which moved a pompom. The act of squeezing the syringe exercised our hand muscles. In the science area we had leaves and seeds from trees. In the games area we have the characters from Brown Bear, Brown Bear to retell the story. We enjoyed having Eliza's mom and Sophia's mom come in and help us at choice time.

EXTRA

Poetry Binder: Please have your child bring in his/her poetry binder if he/she hasn't already. Next time the binder comes home a ring of our sight words will be inside the binder. Please have your child read the words with you and find them in our poems.
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WEEKS OF OCT.19-23, OCT. 26-30, 2015

LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued our focus on rhyming words by matching pictures that rhyme, completing phrase with a rhyming word and generating a rhyming word when we play 'circle of rhymes'. In this game we have a target word (ie. bug, bee, ghost) that we need to rhyme with a real word or a nonsense word. We began to identify the sounds of letters; we started with the letter 's'. We focused orally on identifying words beginning and ending the the /s/ sound. We also worked on identifying a written word by its initial or ending sound. In phonics we focused on identifying the uppercase and lowercase letters. We are working to strengthen our fluency of naming the letters. In literature we read the poems, "Jack-O-Lantern" and "Ghosts". We found specific uppercase and lowercase letters, rhyming words and our sight words. We added 'in' and 'to' to our word wall. During read-aloud we read 2 class books, Who Is This? and The Hungry Caterpillar, as well as In a Dark Dark Wood. These books encourage us to read along because most of the text repeats and is supported by the illustrations. In writers workshop we began writing in our journals. Our first entry was about our weekend news. We illustrated one event of our weekend with detail and , if possible, wrote a word/s to describe it. We illustrated the poem, "Jack-O-Lantern", for our poetry binder.
MATH
We continued our focus on counting sets of objects as well as counting out a specific amount. We worked with shape creations and number shapes which had us focus on counting a specific amount. We began to work on story problems in our math journal and focused on representing the story with illustrations and numerals. We worked in math stations and worked on: sorting and categorizing buttons; writing a numeral to match a die roll; exploring cuisenaire rods; and identifying an amount quickly (an activity, Quick Images, on the iPad). After reading the story, Clifford's Halloween, we did a graphing activity about what we thought would be a good costume for Clifford the big red dog. We sorted our costume ideas by spooky, funny, animal or movie character. We analyzed our graph. We continued with practicing to write numerals.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we discussed the importance of understanding the meaning of body language and what it can tell us about the people we interact with. We focused on facial expressions and how our body is positioned, ie, head down, shoulders down, arms raised, body tight, and how this relates to feelings.
In Social Thinking we identified what a thought bubble and a speech bubble are and how they are different. We sometimes need to keep our thoughts in our thought bubble when it's not an appropriate time to talk or when the thought we have may make someone feel uncomfortable. We read the book, Thinking Thoughts and Feeling Feelings, and discussed how we all have thoughts and feelings when we are alone or interacting with others. Wed discussed how it's important to think about how others are feeling when you are with them and how you may know what another person's thought may be.
​SCIENCE
We focused on leaves, specifically the attributes of a leaf. We collected 5 leaves having different attributes. We shared one and described 2 attributes about it. In a small group we shared 2 leaves and discussed how we could sort the leaves. After deciding on a way to sort, we glued them into the decided groups and labeled each group. Each small group shared how they sorted the leaves. We illustrated our class tree in the season of fall and shared how our tree had changed from our first observation.
CHOICE TIME
At the art table we made tie-die leaves using leaf cut-outs and die. At the collage table we made a tree book which includes illustrations and words for each part of a tree. At the math table we sorted cubes by color and recorded the amount for each color. At letters we identified uppercase letters by feeling them in a feely box/bag. At hands on we completed a ball maze using a magnet stick. We worked on our grip holding the magnet stick as we directed the balls through the maze. In the science area we have different leaves and seeds that we are exploring
BOOK BUDDIES
We began our book buddy time with Ms. Postma's 4th grade class. We met our 4th grade buddy by completing a puzzle. We read our 'All About Me' book to our buddy and then spent time reading books together with our buddy. We will meet once a month with our buddy class and do different activities with them.

We celebrated Jianji's birthday!

​EXTRA

​Snack​: Thank you for sending your child with healthy snacks. Please do not send in candy for snack or lunch. We would like any candy to stay at home.
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WEEKS OF OCT. 5-9, OCT. 12-16, 2015
LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we have continued to focus on rhyming words. We are matching pictures that rhyme, finishing a phrase with a rhyming word (ie. the frog sat on a ___ (log)), and generating rhyming words that are either real or nonsense words. We are focusing on the part of the word (rime) that helps us identify a rhyming word. For example the rime in "cat" is '-at' and we think of all the words with the rime '-at'. Rhyming helps us focus and identify sounds in words. In phonics we are working with uppercase and lowercase letters: sequencing letters, identifying a missing letter in a sequence of letters, finding letters in a poem. In literature we learned the poems, "Autumn" and "Pumpkin". We acted the poems out to help us remember the words of the poem. We added 2 words to our word wall: the, and. We also have been learning about types of literature, fiction and non-fiction. We have been reading books about apples and pumpkins that represent both types: The Season's of Arnold's Apple Tree, by A. Lobel; Amazing Apples, by J. Bauer; The Apple Pie TreeFrom Seed to Pumpkin, by W. Pfeffer. In writers' workshop we illustrated the poems, "Autumn" and "Pumpkin", for our poetry binder. We are also illustrating and writing a book,​All About Me, which highlights some information about each of us. We illustrated and dictated an idea about our field trip to Shelburne Farm which will be made into a class book.
MATH
We have continued a focus on counting a set of objects and counting out a specific number of objects in the games build a staircase, grow and shrink, and racing bears. We are beginning to work on identifying a set of objects instantly. This is called subitizing which is the ability to recognize an amount without counting. We are beginning to focus on sorting and identifying attributes of objects as a way to sort a collection. We worked in small groups and sorted a collection of junk 2-3 different ways. We looked at our pumpkins we picked on the field trip and shared ways we could sort them, ie. height, width, type of stem, color, weight. We used our pumpkin to do some 'pumpkin math'. We measured its height and width; we weighed it; and we predicted and then tested to determine whether our pumpkin would sink or float. We had a thoughtful discussion about why the pumpkins all floated. We have begun to practice writing numerals; we practiced writing the numerals: 1,2 and 3.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we shared ways we get ourselves calm at home. Then we learned some ways we can get ourselves calm using flower breathing and balloon breathing. We discussed what a school listening look is and looks like. We compared it to whole body listening and discussed why we need to have our whole body listening. We began to identify feeling words. We shared when we feel certain feelings and how our bodies may look when we feel a certain way. We started reading The Way I Feel by J. Cain which identifies different feelings and when we may feel that way.
SCIENCE
We enjoyed our field trip to Shelburne Farm and picking apples and pumpkins. We identified the apple trees as broadleaf trees. We continued our focus on types of trees by completing a tree puzzle with a partner. The puzzles represented broadleaf and conifer trees. We created a sequence of the monarch butterfly with pictures and labels. We were fortunate to have a warm day last week so we could release our butterflies! It was exciting to see them fly from the cage and up into the air!
​CHOICE TIME
We began to use the choice board to make independent choices in the room. At the art table we are creating a special star using the picture that each of us brought in. We are thinking of 5 things that are special about us to share on our star. At the math table we are building designs with pattern blocks in frames. At the letter table we are retelling the story ​Chicka Chicka Boom Boom​ using uppercase and lowercase felt letters on a coconut tree.

​EXTRA

​Cool Weather​: Now that we are into fall please think about sending your child to school in layers or packing a sweatshirt/sweater in the backpack.

​Library Books​: Please remember to remind your child to pack his/her library book every Thursday morning or Wednesday night.
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WEEK OF SEPT. 28- OCT.2, 2015
LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we continued our focus on rhyming words. We matched rhyming pictures, completed phrases with a rhyming picture and played 'circle of rhymes'. For the game 'circle of rhymes' there is a target word  (real or nonsense) that everyone shares a word that rhymes with it. The target word was 'cat'. We worked on our listening skills and identifying the missing sound of 2 sounds and 3 sounds. In phonics we identified uppercase letters in our poem, "Shining Apples", and when we sing the alphabet song. We began to add words to our word wall. We identified the words "a" and "I" and put them on the word wall. We also found them in the poems, "KIds in the Tub" and "Shining Apples". In writers' workshop we illustrated the poem, "Shining Apples", for our poetry binder. We also dictated a word and illustrated a page for a class book, The Hungry Caterpillar. During read-aloud we read All About You by C. and L. Anholt. We practiced doing turn and talk with a partner about parts of the book to help to get to know each other.
MATH
We focused on counting out a set of objects and recording the amount of the set. We played a dice game and practiced recognizing numerals on a die and moving the corresponding number of spaces. For build a staircase we practiced sequencing a set of 6 towers. We also worked on creating a set of objects that matched another set in number.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we learned what a nonverbal signal is and identified some nonverbal signals that we'll use in the classroom. We discussed what "the golden rule" means and discussed how we could act in different situations to demonstrate the golden rule. We read Whole Body Listening by Hendrix, Palmer, Tarshis and Winner and learned how to listen with our whole body as well as why it's important to listen with our whole body. This book is part of the Social Thinking program.
SCIENCE
Our butterflies have hatched from some of the chrysalis! We let 2 go outside and are caring for the others as we wait for a warmer day to release them. We illustrated the 4 stages of the monarch butterfly. We worked in small groups and learned about the parts of the tree: roots, trunk, branches and leaves.
CHOICE TIME
We opened up another area: the games area. We explored the different materials in this area: games, puzzles, books, card games, We created an apple tree by rolling a small tissue piece between our 3 working fingers. At the math table we explored dominos.

EXTRA

Poetry Binder: Your child is bringing home his/her poetry binder to share with you. Please encourage him/her to read and share it with you. Please return the binder by Tuesday.

Field Trip: Wed., Oct. 7: Please make sure that your child brings a nut/peanut-free snack in a labeled disposable bag. Have them dresses appropriately for the weather that day.
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WEEK OF SEPT. 21-25, 2015
LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we practiced identifying rhyming words by matching pictures that rhymed: dog-frog, red-bed, book-cook. We also created rhyming verses for the song, "Down by the Bay", and sang them as a class. We learned the poem, "Buckle My Shoe". We identified the rhyming words and practiced acting it out. We continued our work sequencing sounds. We practiced sequencing 3 sounds and then identifying a missing sound from 2 sounds heard. In phonics we practiced singing the alphabet song to specific letters and playing alpha ball. In writers' workshop we illustrated the poem, "Buckle My Shoe", for our poetry binders. During independent reading we continued to explore classroom book baskets by telling the story based on the illustrations or on familiarity (knowing the book) or by reading the words. For read-aloud we read: The Pledge of Allegiance by Scholastic and learned about and recited the pledge; The Very Hungry Caterpillar by E. Carle and read chorally all the foods that the caterpillar ate; We Are All Alike, We Are All Different and learned how to 'turn and talk' with a partner about ourselves. We read the story, Elmer by D. McKee and discussed the importance of being ourselves even though we may think we're different.
MATH
We finished exploring junk boxes, ceramic tiles and vehicle manipulatives. We shared what we noticed about them. We played 2 games which focused on counting. For grab bag we focused on counting a set and matching it to the corresponding numeral. For racing bears we focused on identifying a dot combination and moving that number of spaces. We also learned how to split a number to move more than 1 bear.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we reviewed the rules when we are in Open Circle and played the stand up/sit down game to get to know each other better. We discussed how rules make us safe and the importance of having them. We shared some rules that we thought were important to keep our room safe and a good place to learn and play. We learned that some classroom rules are 'non-negotiable', the rules will never change. For homework we are to talk to our families about rules that we have at home. Each one of us will share a 'home rule' at the next Open Circle.
SCIENCE
We discovered that all of our caterpillars have made chrysalises. We counted out 10-14 days on the calendar to learn about when they may hatch into monarch butterflies. This will happen this week or the beginning of the following week. We began our tree unit and learned about 2 types of trees: broadleaf and conifer. We found each type on the playground and field around the school. We have a class tree that we will be observing during the year. We illustrated it for our science folder. We focused on the parts and details of the tree.
CHOICE TIME
We opened up two areas in the room: the block area and dramatic play. During choice time we had a chance to explore the materials in each area and play. We also used bingo markers at the art table; goe-boards at the hands on table; made pipe cleaner balloons by twisting them with our pointer and thumb fingers at collage.

​EXTRA

​Field Trip​: Wed., Oct. 7, to go apple picking at Shelburne Farm. Please make sure to return the permission slip and check by ​Fri., Oct. 2.
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 WEEK OF SEPT. 14-18, 2015
LANGUAGE ARTS
In phonemic awareness we began to focus on rhyming words. We read the poem, "Kids in the Tub", and identified the words that rhymed. We learned the chant, "Mumbo Jumbo", and identified the rhyming words. We identify rhyming words as words having the same rime but a different onset, ie. c-at and b-at. We began our work sequencing sounds and identifying the first and last sound. In phonics we played alphaball- passing a koosh ball in the circle and having each student say the alphabet letter that comes next in the sequence. We also sang the new alphabet song with Lou. In writers' workshop we illustrated a page for a class book, Who is This? During read-aloud we read Pete the Cat Rocking in My School Shoes by E. Lewin and read chorally the parts of the story that repeat. We read book and then sang the song, Down by the Bay and identified the rhyming pairs of words. For stories we read What's Under Your Hood Orson? and discussed the importance of getting to know others and not making a judgement about someone before getting to know them. We also read Chrysanthemum by K. Henkes and discussed the importance of respecting each other's names. During independent reading we began exploring the different book baskets in our room.
MATH
We continued to explore more math manipulatives: junk boxes, ceramic tiles and transportation vehicles. We focused on the number of students in our class and the importance of knowing how many. We created an attendance stick which will represent how many students are in our class each day. After Curriculum Night we compared our attendance stick to the parent attendance stick. We shared our observations: more cubes on the parents' stick, fewer cubes our stick, need 1 more on the student stick to make them the same. Then we figured out how many parents had come, 20.
SOCIAL STUDIES
In Open Circle we practiced getting in and out of our circle and sharing what we did well doing this routine. We played the "stand up/sit down" game which is a game where students stand up if the clue applies to them, ie. stand up if you have a brother, stand up if you like to swing, stand up if you like dinosaurs. We began to learn about each other from the clues and looking to see who stood up or not.
SCIENCE
We observed our monarch caterpillars several times and watched them eat lots of the milkweed leaves. By Friday we had a chrysalis and some caterpillars making a "J". We read the book, A Butterfly is Born by M. Berger and learned about the stages of a monarch butterfly. We're eager to see if we have more chrysalis by Monday.
CHOICE TIME
We had some new choices and began to explore the block area. At the art table we are painting with watercolor paints. At collage we are making a strip collage with plain and patterned paper. At the math table we explored pattern blocks in a triangle or hexagon frame.

We celebrated Ryan's birthday! (A belated birthday as his birthday was Sept. 1.)

EXTRA

Picture Day​: Monday, Sept. 21. Make sure to send in the photo forms if you plan to order pictures.

​No School​: Wed., Sept. 23.
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WEEK OF SEPT. 7-11, 2015

We had a full and busy first week of Kindergarten! For these first several weeks of school we will be focusing on learning routines and rules and getting to know one another. 
LANGUAGE ARTS
We learned the chant, "Boom Chicka Boom", and said it in different voices (small, deep). We read and then sang the pocket chart poem/song, "This Old Man". We acted out the number and the item for each number- showed one finger for 1 and showed our thumb. We read the poem, "Too Many Kids in the Tub" and identified the illustrations that help us know the word in the poem. In phonics we identified letters that are vowels and consonants on the alphabet.We also learned a new version of the alphabet song with 'Lou' and clapped on certain letters to help us eliminate the letter 'LMNO'. We heard several stories which focused on: feelings at the beginning of the year- Wemberly Worried by K. Henkes and Pete the Cat Rocking in My School Shoes by E. Litwin; hopes for the new school year- This School Year Will Be the Best by K. Winters; learning and respecting names- A Porcupine Named Fluffy.
MATH
We read the story, First Day Hooray by N. Poydar, and discussed how the characters felt about the first day of school. Then we identified our own feelings on the first day and graphed them. We analyzed the results of how our classroom felt on the first day. We spent time exploring manipulatives that we'll be using this year in math. We explored pattern blocks, tiles and bears. We shared our observations about each of the manipulatives. We played a game called "Count and Sit" which focuses on counting off and keeping track of numbers to a target number.
CHOICE TIME
In small groups we explored materials in some areas of the classroom: stencils, playdough, unifix cubes and magnetic letters. Each week an area of the classroom will open and we'll learn how to use the materials in the new area and what the rules are for the area.

EXTRA

Curriculum Night: Curriculum Night is on Sept.16 from 6:30-7:15 pm. This is a time for parents to come and hear about the Kindergarten curriculum and learn about your child's day. This is a parent-only event.

Snacks: Please make sure to check the ingredients of your child's snack. We are a nut and peanut-free school. Some snack bars may not have nuts in them but have been processed in a machine that has been exposed to nuts/peanuts.