Explorations of Elementary 2017 March Newsletter

March was a busy month preparing for our World’s Fair. Students researched fourteen different points about their chosen country. While researching, students kept their information on note cards in their research folders. Students then used those note cards to write a research paper, make a cover page, and complete a bibliography. After their research was complete, students had to sketch the layout of their trifold including the title of their country, a map of the country, the flag of the country, and other interesting photos or facts. After planning students created their trifold and then practiced presenting their information to each other.

On the evening of our World’s Fair, students were excited to come in costume and to present their research to families and friends. They took breaks to see the work of their friends and try some of the Chinese rice a student prepared!

This month first year students began researching simple machines. They learned simple machines help make work easier for us. They researched inclined planes, screws, wedges, pulleys, lever, and wheels and axles. After learning about each simple machine, students thought of examples for each machine. They then took turns using our simple machine materials to build each type. In April, these students will choose a machine and build it themselves.

Our second year students continued their rock research with a sugar cube experiment. They reviewed the rock cycle and the three types of rocks at the beginning of their sugar lab. Each student took a sugar cube, to represent our sedimentary rocks, then crushed it using a hammer to turn it into sediments.  After crushing each cube, the students had to build a foil boat or pan for their smashed cube. They held their foil pan over a candle flame to melt the sugar. The melted sugar represented magma. After the magma cooled, we discovered this was like an igneous rock. Students decided to redo this experiment many times to see what consistencies they could make!

This month we welcomed our first kindergarten visitors! Each visitor is partnered up with an Elementary child. This child is the guide during the week visit. Our guides are responsible for giving their kindergarten visitor a tour of the classroom and an explanation of the way to do things in the classroom. These guides help the kindergarten students make work choices and answer any questions they may have. This gives the guides an opportunity to be leaders academically and socially to help the visiting students.

We enjoyed Pajama Day before Spring Break! We watched “Homeward Bound” in the morning. In the afternoon, our students made s’mores together from a homemade “cooker” that a student created after our sugar cube experiment. We had a dance party and played board games. Our students were also excited to be able to enjoy outdoor gym class!

We are looking forward to April with you!

 

 

 


Ms. Courtney’s March 2017 Newsletter

Classroom News:

The first week of March we learned all about insects. The children learned how to identify animals belonging in the insect category and those that do not. They learned the main parts of an insect and the preschoolers made a beautiful diagram to display in the classroom.


For the second week of March we talked about plants and flowers. The children discovered the four elements needed to grow a plant soil, seeds, sun and water. They also learned the word photosynthesis! We planted flowers to watch grow in the classroom.


The last week of March we talked about butterflies and caterpillars. Students had a blast learning about how butterflies go through stages of growth and change called a life cycle.


I hope everyone enjoyed their spring break and is ready to get back into the swing of things!


Academic Enrichment Group Time | Kindergarten

The kindergartners started March by learning about nouns and verbs. Nouns are people, places, and things. Verbs are action words or something you can do. We also learned that there are three articles, a, an, the.  We learned that “a” hooks up with consonants, “an” is very picky and only hooks up with vowels. And “the” is not picky at all and hooks up with anything!


Reading Group | Kindergarten
-with Ms. Faith

In reading group, the kindergartners read a folk tale called Rabbit and Guinea Fowl Get Justice. This story was about a rabbit who did not work hard to keep his farm up, and became jealous of a guinea fowls farm that produced good fruits and vegetables. The rabbit decided to take over his farm and lie that the guinea fowls farm was his. At the end, Guinea fowl tricks Rabbit by taking his own vegetables back. This story taught a lesson about hard work, and that you can’t take other peoples things when they work hard. Along with answering questions and practicing reading aloud, the kindergartners created puppets of the characters from the story to use while acting out a scene, they drew pictures depicting what they thought Rabbit would do on his farm at the end of the story, and whether or not they thought the village chief was wise. In April, we will start a series of poems about different seasons.

 

Science Enrichment
-by Ms. Courtney

In the month of March we enjoyed our skittles experiment! We did a skittles science experiment that was very simple. We set up skittles around the edge of a shallow bowl in a rainbow order, then we added about a 1/2 inch of warm water. The skittles started to dissolve pretty quickly because skittles are made of ingredients that are prone to dissolve in water. At first this made a skittles rainbow but eventually all the colors blended together to make brown and the skittles were totally dissolved.


Art Enrichment
-by Ms. Faith

To kick off the month of March, the students made a sun catcher with the image of a sun. Ms. Michele drew inspiration from an artist named Don Drumm, a local artist from Akron. He creates sculptures and pieces of artwork using the image of the sun. To create the sun catcher, the young artists drew the sun first on tracing paper, and then they used primary colored paints to blend together to make rainbow colors. The paint was a tempera and glue mix to make the paint thicker and bolder. This was a great reminder that spring will be around the corner. To end the month, Ms. Michele had the students build a small pallet out of Popsicle sticks to create a base for their sculpture. Then, they were given small pieces of wood in different shapes and sizes to glue on the pallet. After the glue dried some, Ms. Michele reviewed the term monochromatic (one color) with the class, and allowed them to choose one color of paint to paint their sculpture.


Music Enrichment
-by Ms. Faith

This last month Ms. Lisa taught the students some new songs about character building. We talked about what it meant to tell the truth, what it means to forgive, and how to share. After the discussion Ms. Lisa taught them the new song for each characteristic. Some of the new songs had sign language to go with the words, which the students enjoyed learning. Throughout the month, the students gained experience playing tambourines, bells, maracas, and rhythm sticks.  In music class the young musicians were able to sing some classics such as, Skinnamarinky Dinky Dink and John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt.

 

 


Ms. Kristen’s March 2017 Newsletter

Classroom News:

The month of March has been very busy in our classroom. We learned about Dr. Seuss, Space, and all about our state of Ohio. The children also enjoyed celebrating St. Patrick’s Day! We were also very excited to welcome Ms. Caroline to our classroom!

Victoria was so proud of her work with the Pink Tower and Brown Stairs! This material helps the child to develop a sense of order as they build from the biggest to smallest piece. It’s also great preparation for the Math area!

During the first week, we had fun learning all about Dr. Seuss. The children enjoyed reading “ Yurtle The Turtle”, “ The Cat In The Hat” , and “ Fox In Sox”. During Afternoon Group Time, the children enjoyed making Cat In The Hat hats with Ms. Kerri. The children also learned that Dr. Seuss’ real name was Theodore Seuss Giesel and he wasn’t actually a real doctor. We also learned that Dr. Seuss lived near a zoo as a child, which is where he began to think of all of his imaginary creatures in his stories! The children also taste tested Green Eggs.

Tenleigh enjoying a Dr. Seuss book in the Library while snuggling the Cat In The Hat. 

During week two and three, we enjoyed learning all about Outer Space.  The children enjoyed learning all the names of the planets in our solar system, learning all about the phases of the moon, and all about constellations. The children also enjoyed watching footage of the first moon landing. They learned about black holes with Ms. Caroline and learned a Planet Song with Ms. Kristen! Some of the children even took it upon themselves to make their own book of planets!

We also were pleased to welcome Ms. Caroline to our classroom! Ms. Caroline introduced herself to the children by bringing in pictures of her and her family and sharing with us how they moved here from England! We are so thankful to have her as a part of our classroom and the children are so excited she is with us!

We learned all about Ohio during week four! The children learned our state bird, the Cardinal. We also learned that our state capitol is Columbus, and that our state tree is the buckeye tree. We also talked about how our state is a small piece of our country, that our county is a small piece of our state, and our city is a small piece of our county! The children enjoyed seeing this up close using Google Earth to zoom in on our school with Ms. Caroline! We also enjoyed talking about famous sites around Ohio, such as Cedar Point, Progressive Field, The Cuyahoga Falls Clock Tower, etc.

For St. Patrick’s Day, the children enjoyed making a shamrock craft with Ms. Caroline and learning about how St. Patrick’s Day became a holiday!

Finally:
I would encourage you to review with your child what they have learned this past month. Read a Dr. Seuss book together and ask your child to point out some of the rhyming words. Discuss with your child the name of our planet, continent, county, state, and city. Practice naming the planets together and discuss which one you and your child would visit if you could.

Maria Montessori was quoted as saying, “ The child becomes a person through work.” I am enjoying seeing how your children continue to grow in their independence, laying the foundation for the adult they will one day become. I am so fortunate to have front row seat to watching each of these wonderful children learn and grow and I considerate a joy to come to school and learn alongside them every day!

 

Academic Enrichment Group Time | Kindergarten
-with Mr. John

The kindergartners started their section in Language.  We will be learning about the parts of speech until the end of the year.  We went over vowels/consonants, and nouns and verbs.  A noun is a person, place, or thing.  A verb is an action word or something you do.  We the learned there are three articles.  They are A, An, The.  We learned rules when we use those articles.  “A” hooks up with consonants, “AN” hooks up with vowels, and “THE” hooks up with anything.

Cultural Subjects:
My line time and the kindergarten class count to ten in 28 different languages (English, Sign Language, German, French, Greek, Spanish, Italian, Romanian, Russian, Tagalog, Polish, Irish, Welsh, Hebrew, Arabic w/the Lebanese dialect, Japanese, Hungarian, Swedish, Swahili, Korean, Serbo-Croation, Hindi, Flemish/Dutch, Malay, Cebuano, Farsi and Turkish)!

Handwriting Enrichment
-with Ms. Kristen

The children learned how to write vowels and consonant blends in cursive this month, such as ” oo”, “ee”, “th”, “sh”, etc. We also ventured into more creative journal writing, answering questions such as ” If you could go on vacation anywhere, who would you take with you and why?” and ” Tell me two things you plan to do over your Spring Break”. I’m daily impressed with their creativity and excitement for writing!

Reading Group | Kindergarten
-with Ms. Kate

For the month of March our Reading group read two wonderful stories called The Frog Prince, and Guinea Fowl and Rabbit Get Justice. With each of these stories the children were able to illustrate and write about what was happening in each of the stories. By illustrating, the children are visualizing the characters and setting of the story. As they make their own decisions about what the hardest thing is, they are learning that their individual perspectives on a story are important. They also had so much fun acting out the stories. Dramatizations can make it easier for students to take in detail and get plots straight! The children really enjoyed these stories!

 

Science Enrichment
-by Ms. Kathleen

This month in March we did 3 Science experiments,

  1. Density:  What happens when you put a lemon and a lime in a container of water? The lemon floats and the lime sinks. Why? because the lime is denser than the lemon, the lime has more water by weight in it, it is also guessed that lemons have more air in them which makes them float.
  2. Density: What happens when we mix oil, water and Alka Seltzer in a plastic clear bottle? But first we pour water into bottle about 1/4 full. Then pour vegetable oil into bottle until full, wait until it separates. Add 10 drops food coloring. Break a seltzer tablet in half drop into bottle. Watch it sink to the bottom and the bubble greatness begins, bubbles start wildly going up and down the bottle quickly almost in a dancing like fashion, truly entertaining. This fantastic experiment is because the oil stays above the water the oil is lighter than the water. Oil and water do not mix, the structures of the two molecules do not allow them to bond together. When the tablet pieces are added, they sank to the bottom and created a gas, As the gas bubbles rose, they took some of the colored water with them. When the bubbles reach the top, the gas escapes and down went the water. This was for sure one of the Children’s favorites this month because of all that it does, so fun to watch.
  3. Carbonation: What will happen when you place raisins in a fresh glass of ginger ale? The raisins sink to the bottom of the ginger ale. Then after just a few minutes the raisins get covered in bubbles and rise to the top. Then fall to the bottom. They repeat this pattern for several minutes. Why does this happen? The raisins are heavier than the ginger ale. When enough bubbles attach to the raisins they become” lighter” than the ginger ale. The bubbles raise the raisins to the top. When the bubbles reach the surface they pop dropping the raisins to the bottom again.
Up, up the dancing raisins go!

Music Enrichment
-by Ms. Sabrina

Music is so much fun! This month was all about good manners! A song and game about sharing was played! While listening to the directions in the song, the children passed and shared a ball, and had a lot of fun!  The magic words “please” and “thank you” were reinforced through song and by using movement and castanets. “You Have a Choice” was a song played during class, which taught the children that they had a choice to be kind. The children enjoyed using bells, tambourines and rhythm sticks as well this month. The children also learned the difference between forte and piano or loud and soft. They loved raising and lowering their voices with the music. Songs about forgiveness and telling the truth were also shared this month. Ask your child to share all these great songs!

Art Enrichment
-by Ms. Ame

The first week of March Miss Michele felt much better and brought some (much needed) sunshine into our rooms using modge-podge glue with different colors mixed in! The students each created their own sunshine using different colors. These masterpieces will look fantastic in a window that gets a lot of sunshine. The next week Miss Ame stepped in when Miss Michele was sick and taught an abbreviated art lesson on Andy Warhol, that’s what all those colorful cats were about! The students learned a bit about his life and the definition of pop art. The next week Miss Michele taught the students about the definition of monochromatic. Monochromatic means only using a single color.  The students each created their own “house” or creation out of gluing popsicle sticks. Then they painted their creation only one color. It was difficult to pick only one! The next week Miss Michele talked about complimentary colors and introduced the color wheel once again. The students had to identify the complimentary color to the color they painted their creation the previous week. Then Miss Michele provided small boxes full of all sorts of treasures! The students had to be very careful to pick out only the complimentary colored items and glue them onto their monochromatic creation! They turned out so beautiful! If you see yours on the art rack, feel free to take it home! We can’t wait for April and see what multicultural projects Miss Michele will have us make to display at the International Festival on the 21st!

 

 


Mr. John’s March, 2017 Newsletter Article

On a personal note…

March was a hard month for my animals.  I had many deaths which does happen once in awhile.  It just seems that the animals get old and…. well, die.  With death comes life and new animals- which has been exciting in our room.  I did add Green and Brown Anoles and Long Tailed Lizards AND the popular Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches.  These are calm and beautiful creatures are not like the cockroaches that shared my apartment in college at The Ohio State University.  Those roaches looked into my soul and gave me chills before they darted off behind the stove.  Dreadful beasts they were.  Although, it was sport for me and my roommate to capture them in the Roach Motel. A game so to speak.  The roaches toyed with us at times.  We would think we got a few the night before. Looking in the box and expecting to see roaches glued to the inner box only to have them taunt and mock us and some pretended to be stuck and when we picked up the motel they scurried out of the box behind the fridge laughing.   By Spring Quarter we all became friends and lived harmoniously together! We ate dinner together, watched TV, and sometimes they would go to out with us.  Although since they didn’t have an ID we had to sneak them in.  I often wonder what some of my six legged friends are up to now.

 

Observing Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches
Green and Brown Anoles and Long Tail Lizard        

 

Line Time Lessons:

The beginning of the month brought us looking at various artists like Monet and Picasso.  We looked at Claude Monet’s water colors and his view of the world.  Monet’s view was not as interesting as Pablo Picasso’s.  The children laughed as they saw some of his “weird” pictures.  We went to the Akron Art Museum and learned that paintings consist of lines, shapes, colors, and textures.  The students had a blast at the museum!

 

  

“I Spy”  (Language)                                                        Young and old in a Montessori Classroom

                                                                                           

We turned our attention to our environment.  We looked at what pollution can do to our environment.  What air, water, littering and noise pollution does to our environment and what we can do to help clean our world.  We learned the 3 R’s … Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.  I showed them pictures of polluted areas and clean areas then asked which they would rather live.  It was a resounding answer of a clean environment.  We now know that pollution is TOXIC!

 

The 9 Tray(Math)

We prepared ourselves for the International Festival about learning about our own great state of Ohio.  We learned that our official tree is the Buckeye tree,  mammal is the White Tailed Deer,  fossil is the Trilobite, bird is the Cardinal, flower is the Scarlet Carnation, insect is the Lady Bug, drink is Tomato Juice… get what the predominant color is?  The official rock and roll song is Hang On Sloopy and the state flag is the only state in the union that is not a rectangle.

 

     

9 Tray(Math), Kindergarten Binder work             9 Tray and Blue Rectangle Box(Geometry)

 

Cultural Subjects:

My line time and the kindergarten class count to ten in 28 different languages (English, Sign Language, German, French, Greek, Spanish, Italian, Romanian, Russian, Tagalog, Polish, Irish, Welsh, Hebrew, Arabic w/the Lebanese dialect, Japanese, Hungarian, Swedish, Swahili, Korean, Serbo-Croation, Hindi, Flemish/Dutch, Malay, Cebuano, Farsi and Turkish!)

We had our cheeky leprechaun, Sean O’Keefe, visit us again.  He left the room a mess but left candy for the teachers and students.  I will catch you next year Sean O’Keefe!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

                                                                       Sean O’Keefe aftermath

 

St. Patty Day Princesses

 

We had a wonderful field trip to the Akron Art Museum.  This yearly field trip is one of my favorites.  The docents do a great job of explaining the art and keeping the children’s attention.  The students love to see all the art and participate in the activities at the Art Museum.

 

Hands on at the art museum

I have a 9 year old Amaryllis flower that blooms every spring.  I am having the kindergarten students track and document the growth of this plant and form their hypothesis on how big it might get and what color the flowers will be.  They are measuring with a ruler and documenting in inches and centimeters the growth of this plant.

 

                                                             Tracking the growth of a plant

 

Spring has sprung.  Students noticed our flower in bloom looked like a work!

 

Visitor:

We had Ms. Taylor, a dental hygienist, come in and she gave a lesson how important it is to brush, floss, and eat healthy to protect our teeth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Academic Enrichment Group Time | Kindergarten
-with Mr. John

The kindergartners started their section in Language.  We will be learning about the parts of speech until the end of the year.  We went over vowels/consonants, and nouns and verbs.  A noun is a person, place, or thing.  A verb is an action word or something you do.  We the learned there are three articles.  They are A, An, The.  We learned rules when we use those articles.  “A” hooks up with consonants, “AN” hooks up with vowels, and “THE” hooks up with anything.

Cultural Subjects:
My line time and the kindergarten class count to ten in 28 different languages (English, Sign Language, German, French, Greek, Spanish, Italian, Romanian, Russian, Tagalog, Polish, Irish, Welsh, Hebrew, Arabic w/the Lebanese dialect, Japanese, Hungarian, Swedish, Swahili, Korean, Serbo-Croation, Hindi, Flemish/Dutch, Malay, Cebuano, Farsi and Turkish)!

Handwriting Enrichment
-with Ms. Kristen

The children learned how to write vowels and consonant blends in cursive this month, such as ” oo”, “ee”, “th”, “sh”, etc. We also ventured into more creative journal writing, answering questions such as ” If you could go on vacation anywhere, who would you take with you and why?” and ” Tell me two things you plan to do over your Spring Break”. I’m daily impressed with their creativity and excitement for writing!

Reading Group | Kindergarten
-with Ms. Kate

For the month of March our Reading group read two wonderful stories called The Frog Prince, and Guinea Fowl And Rabbit Get Justice. With each of these stories the children were able to illustrate and write about what was happening in each of the stories. By illustrating, the children are visualizing the characters and setting of the story. As they make their own decisions about what the hardest thing is, they are learning that their individual perspectives on a story are important. They also had so much fun acting out the stories. Dramatizations can make it easier for students to take in detail and get plots straight! The children really enjoyed these stories!

Science Enrichment
-by Ms. Kathleen

This month in March we did 3 Science experiments,

  1. Density:  What happens when you put a lemon and a lime in a container of water? The lemon floats and the lime sinks. Why? because the lime is denser than the lemon, the lime has more water by weight in it, it is also guessed that lemons have more air in them which makes them float.
  2. Density: What happens when we mix oil, water and Alka Seltzer in a plastic clear bottle? But first we pour water into bottle about 1/4 full. Then pour vegetable oil into bottle until full, wait until it separates. Add 10 drops food coloring. Break a seltzer tablet in half drop into bottle. Watch it sink to the bottom and the bubble greatness begins, bubbles start wildly going up and down the bottle quickly almost in a dancing like fashion, truly entertaining. This fantastic experiment is because the oil stays above the water the oil is lighter than the water. Oil and water do not mix, the structures of the two molecules do not allow them to bond together. When the tablet pieces are added, they sank to the bottom and created a gas, As the gas bubbles rose, they took some of the colored water with them. When the bubbles reach the top, the gas escapes and down went the water. This was for sure one of the Children’s favorites this month because of all that it does, so fun to watch.
  3. Carbonation: What will happen when you place raisins in a fresh glass of ginger ale? The raisins sink to the bottom of the ginger ale. Then after just a few minutes the raisins get covered in bubbles and rise to the top. Then fall to the bottom. They repeat this pattern for several minutes. Why does this happen? The raisins are heavier than the ginger ale. When enough bubbles attach to the raisins they become” lighter” than the ginger ale. The bubbles raise the raisins to the top. When the bubbles reach the surface they pop dropping the raisins to the bottom again.

 

         Up up the dancing raisins go!

Music Enrichment

-by Ms. Sabrina

Music is so much fun! This month was all about good manners! A song and game about sharing was played! While listening to the directions in the song, the children passed and shared a ball, and had a lot of fun!  The magic words “please” and “thank you” were reinforced through song and by using movement and castanets. “You Have a Choice” was a song played during class, which taught the children that they had a choice to be kind. The children enjoyed using bells, tambourines and rhythm sticks as well this month. The children also learned the difference between forte and piano or loud and soft. They loved raising and lowering their voices with the music. Songs about forgiveness and telling the truth were also shared this month. Ask your child to share all these great songs!

Art Enrichment
-by Ms. Ame

The first week of March Miss Michele felt much better and brought some (much needed) sunshine into our rooms using modge-podge glue with different colors mixed in! The students each created their own sunshine using different colors. These masterpieces will look fantastic in a window that gets a lot of sunshine. The next week Miss Ame stepped in when Miss Michele was sick and taught an abbreviated art lesson on Andy Warhol, that’s what all those colorful cats were about! The students learned a bit about his life and the definition of pop art. The next week Miss Michele taught the students about the definition of monochromatic. Monochromatic means only using a single color.  The students each created their own “house” or creation out of gluing popsicle sticks. Then they painted their creation only one color. It was difficult to pick only one! The next week Miss Michele talked about complimentary colors and introduced the color wheel once again. The students had to identify the complimentary color to the color they painted their creation the previous week. Then Miss Michele provided small boxes full of all sorts of treasures! The students had to be very careful to pick out only the complimentary colored items and glue them onto their monochromatic creation! They turned out so beautiful! If you see yours on the art rack, feel free to take it home! We can’t wait for April and see what multicultural projects Miss Michele will have us make to display at the International Festival on the 21st!

 


Ms. Kate’s March 2017 Newsletter Article

Classroom News:

March was a busy month for us. The children had fun talking about Dr. Seuss, learning about different artists, and exploring the our five senses, and also learning about spring. We also had fun celebrating Saint Patrick’s Day.

   

The first week was celebrating Dr. Seuss. The children had a blast this week! Throughout the week the children were able to wear silly socks, mismatched clothes, have crazy hair, and wear a crazy hat! The first day we read The Cat In the Hat. After we read the story, the children were able to create their own cat in the hats out of red and white paper. We then took a silly picture! The next day the children were given a plain sock template and they were able to draw their silly sock they wore. We then made a silly sock graph. Having graphs is super important for children because they provide meaningful opportunity for children to represent and communicate important mathematical relationships. Later on we made green eggs and ham and had a taste test. Lastly we created another graph using all of the books we had read that week, and then graphing our favorites.

   

The theme for our second week was, Art Appreciation. This week we focused on different artists and their works. The children were able to create their own works from the artists they learned about. The first day we learned all about Claude Monet. We discussed landscapes and why he chose to only draw them. We also learned about oil pastels and how to blend them. The children then created their own landscape while using oil pastels. On the second day, we discussed Pablo Picasso and his different Periods. The children learned about his Blue period and how he was very sad. We also talked about his Rose period where he fell in love and became very happy and all of his paintings were a rosy hue. We then went over his angry period, where all of his paintings were a bit scary. I showed them how he would drew faces in a different way and how all of his drawing were different. The children then drew self-portraits, cut their pictures up and created their own Picasso with Ms. Ame. The next thing we learned about was Vincent Van Gough. The children learned the history behind his art, they were also able to explore his different paintings and why he painted certain paintings the way he did. The children then created their own 3D Sunflower portrait! They also had a lot of fun learning, exploring, and doing different types of art with Ms. Ame!

  

Our third week was all about spring and the different things that happen during this time. To start out the week we discussed the four seasons. We created a chart that was sectioned into four groups. We then went over the different weather that we get with each season, the clothes we might wear, what the trees are doing, and what the animals might be doing with each of these seasons. We then lead a discussion about the adult animal and what their baby animal is called. We read some wonderful books and then we played a fun matching game where we had to place the baby animal next to its mother. Matching games are great for children’s brain development because it provides an opportunity to master a skill, it also brings in deep concentration which is calming and deeply satisfying for the child, and it also demonstrates that they are capable of making the connection between the real item and the pictorial representation. We also went over the parts of the flower, and the life cycle of a chick!

   

The last week of March we had fun learning about our five senses. The first day the children learned about hearing and how the ear works. We also listened to an awesome CD that played different environmental sounds where the children had to guess what the sounds were. We then learned about touch and the children had to place their hand in the mystery bag and guess the item that they were touching. We also had fun learning about taste where the children got to taste something sweet, salty, sour, and bitter! We then played a take away game that explained all about sight, and lastly the children had to place a blindfold on while smelling different smells such as bananas, vanilla, lemon, peppermint, orange, and cinnamon. I loved seeing all the children’s facial expressions!

I hope everyone has a wonderful and safe spring break! See you in April!

 

Academic Enrichment Group Time | Kindergarten
-with Mr. John

The kindergartners started their section in Language.  We will be learning about the parts of speech until the end of the year.  We went over vowels/consonants, and nouns and verbs.  A noun is a person, place, or thing.  A verb is an action word or something you do.  We the learned there are three articles.  They are A, An, The.  We learned rules when we use those articles.  “A” hooks up with consonants, “AN” hooks up with vowels, and “THE” hooks up with anything.

Cultural Subjects:
My line time and the kindergarten class count to ten in 28 different languages (English, Sign Language, German, French, Greek, Spanish, Italian, Romanian, Russian, Tagalog, Polish, Irish, Welsh, Hebrew, Arabic w/the Lebanese dialect, Japanese, Hungarian, Swedish, Swahili, Korean, Serbo-Croation, Hindi, Flemish/Dutch, Malay, Cebuano, Farsi and Turkish)!

Handwriting Enrichment
-with Ms. Kristen

The children learned how to write vowels and consonant blends in cursive this month, such as ” oo”, “ee”, “th”, “sh”, etc. We also ventured into more creative journal writing, answering questions such as ” If you could go on vacation anywhere, who would you take with you and why?” and ” Tell me two things you plan to do over your Spring Break”. I’m daily impressed with their creativity and excitement for writing!

Reading Group | Kindergarten
-with Ms. Kate

For the month of March our Reading group read two wonderful stories called The Frog Prince, and Guinea Fowl and Rabbit Get Justice. With each of these stories the children were able to illustrate and write about what was happening in each of the stories. By illustrating, the children are visualizing the characters and setting of the story. As they make their own decisions about what the hardest thing is, they are learning that their individual perspectives on a story are important. They also had so much fun acting out the stories. Dramatizations can make it easier for students to take in detail and get plots straight! The children really enjoyed these stories!

Science Enrichment
-by Ms. Kathleen

This month in March we did 3 Science experiments,

  1. Density:  What happens when you put a lemon and a lime in a container of water? The lemon floats and the lime sinks. Why? because the lime is denser than the lemon, the lime has more water by weight in it, it is also guessed that lemons have more air in them which makes them float.
  2. Density: What happens when we mix oil, water and Alka Seltzer in a plastic clear bottle? But first we pour water into bottle about 1/4 full. Then pour vegetable oil into bottle until full, wait until it separates. Add 10 drops food coloring. Break a seltzer tablet in half drop into bottle. Watch it sink to the bottom and the bubble greatness begins, bubbles start wildly going up and down the bottle quickly almost in a dancing like fashion, truly entertaining. This fantastic experiment is because the oil stays above the water the oil is lighter than the water. Oil and water do not mix, the structures of the two molecules do not allow them to bond together. When the tablet pieces are added, they sank to the bottom and created a gas, As the gas bubbles rose, they took some of the colored water with them. When the bubbles reach the top, the gas escapes and down went the water. This was for sure one of the Children’s favorites this month because of all that it does, so fun to watch.
  3. Carbonation: What will happen when you place raisins in a fresh glass of ginger ale? The raisins sink to the bottom of the ginger ale. Then after just a few minutes the raisins get covered in bubbles and rise to the top. Then fall to the bottom. They repeat this pattern for several minutes. Why does this happen? The raisins are heavier than the ginger ale. When enough bubbles attach to the raisins they become” lighter” than the ginger ale. The bubbles raise the raisins to the top. When the bubbles reach the surface they pop dropping the raisins to the bottom again.
Up, up the dancing raisins go!

 

Music Enrichment

-by Ms. Sabrina

Music is so much fun! This month was all about good manners! A song and game about sharing was played! While listening to the directions in the song, the children passed and shared a ball, and had a lot of fun!  The magic words “please” and “thank you” were reinforced through song and by using movement and castanets. “You Have a Choice” was a song played during class, which taught the children that they had a choice to be kind. The children enjoyed using bells, tambourines and rhythm sticks as well this month. The children also learned the difference between forte and piano or loud and soft. They loved raising and lowering their voices with the music. Songs about forgiveness and telling the truth were also shared this month. Ask your child to share all these great songs!

Art Enrichment
-by Ms. Ame

The first week of March Miss Michele felt much better and brought some (much needed) sunshine into our rooms using modge-podge glue with different colors mixed in! The students each created their own sunshine using different colors. These masterpieces will look fantastic in a window that gets a lot of sunshine. The next week Miss Ame stepped in when Miss Michele was sick and taught an abbreviated art lesson on Andy Warhol, that’s what all those colorful cats were about! The students learned a bit about his life and the definition of pop art. The next week Miss Michele taught the students about the definition of monochromatic. Monochromatic means only using a single color.  The students each created their own “house” or creation out of gluing popsicle sticks. Then they painted their creation only one color. It was difficult to pick only one! The next week Miss Michele talked about complimentary colors and introduced the color wheel once again. The students had to identify the complimentary color to the color they painted their creation the previous week. Then Miss Michele provided small boxes full of all sorts of treasures! The students had to be very careful to pick out only the complimentary colored items and glue them onto their monochromatic creation! They turned out so beautiful! If you see yours on the art rack, feel free to take it home! We can’t wait for April and see what multicultural projects Miss Michele will have us make to display at the International Festival on the 21st!

 


Explorations of Elementary April 2017 Overview

Explorations of Elementary April 2017 Overview

Research

  • Our first-year students will continue their study of Simple Machines by constructing their own machine. Each student will also write an experiment card for their fellow students to be able to use their machine.
  • Second year students will move into the study of main characteristics of vertebrates. This will help them at the end of the year to make a Venn Diagram with the third year students about vertebrates and invertebrates. They will also focus their polygon study on triangles for this month.
  • Third year students will begin an in-depth study of the different groups of the plant kingdom.
  • Students researching the human body will finish up with organs and discuss our largest organ, the skin.
  • Students have been separated into two groups for the International Festival. Two second year students are in charge of each group. One group has chosen to research Horseshoe Bend in Arizona, and the other, Immortal Bridge in China. These groups will write a research paper, create a model of their landmark, and prepare a presentation.
  • We will be studying the continent of Australia. We will look at the currency of Australia, a timeline of the history of Australia, and creating Aboriginal Dot Art.
  • Math and Language lessons are given to children based on individual needs, instead of age level.

Reading Groups

  • Two groups are reading different chapter books from the Junie B. Jones series. A third group completed Bunnicula and is beginning a book from A Series of Unfortunate Events. The fourth group is continuing Hidden Figures and will have a special presentation for the International Festival.
  • For Writer’s Workshop this month we will finish our study of fairy tales. We will begin writing “All Abouts.” Our “All Abouts” will focus on different types of animals. Students will write everything they know about the animal of their choice, then will work with a partner to edit their work.

Spelling Groups

  • Our first group will continue their work reviewing long vowel spellings with long i, long o, and long u. The second groups will focus on silent letters, /aw/ spellings, and /s/ and /j/ spellings. The third group is completing the red level with contractions and moving on to study challenging long vowel words in the orange level. The final spelling group will study suffixes, doubling final consonants, contractions, and complete a final review of their level.
  • The homework for the month of March will be rhyming words for groups 1, 2, and 3. These groups need to write each spelling word once, then two words that rhyme with each word. Groups 4 and 5 will be doing “Code Words.” These students need to create a code for each letter and write their words using the code. The codes can be a symbol for each letter or a number for each letter.

Field Trips and Special Events

  • April 7: Dads and Donuts from 7-7:45am
  • April 7: Laser Quest Gym Field Trip
  • April 14-17: Easter Break – NO SCHOOL
  • April 19: International Festival Rehearsal
  • April 21: International Festival

 

 


April 2017 Academic Enrichment | Cuyahoga Falls Campus

Our Academic Enrichment time is daily from 12:00-1:00pm. This time is specifically designed for our Kindergarten students to join as a group to work and progress through the advanced materials and lessons in the Montessori primary curriculum with Mr. John. During this time Ms. Kristen also gives additional handwriting and journaling lessons. Throughout the school day in their classroom they are still working individually with their classroom teacher on these and other materials at their level. Please read through what we will be covering during this time together below.

Reading Group Overview | Ms. Kate
Junior Great Books is a foundational reading program that introduces students to a variety of literary genres, while teaching critical thinking and comprehension skills. Our Kindergarten students meet twice a week as a small reading group. During this time, they listen to a story being read to them and take turns reading the story aloud. Students pause during readings to think critically about the story, identify the different parts of the story, such as the characters and main ideas, make predictions about what might happen next, and learn new vocabulary words, using the context to understand the meaning. Each week I will email information about the current story and any assignment information for at home work.

4/03: Introduction to Pronouns

Rules of the pronouns
Worksheets, grammar symbols, diagramming sentences

4/10: Introduction to Adjectives

Rules of the adjectives
Worksheets, grammar symbols, diagramming sentences

4/17: Introduction to Adverbs

Rules of  adverbs
Worksheets, grammar symbols, diagramming sentences

4/24: Introduction to Conjunctions

Rules of conjunctions
Worksheets, grammar symbols, diagramming sentences

Sight Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.

**No Sight words or synonyms until 4/24/2017 due to the International Festival

4/24: look, many

Synonyms of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.

4/24: Talk, Chat, Gab, Speak, Converse

 

Mr. John will be sending homework home to reinforce these lessons. Please turn homework into the BLUE box outside of Mr. John’s classroom.  Please email him if you have any questions: jkotradi@thesmarterkids.com.

 


April 2017 Academic Enrichment Overview | Tallmadge Campus

Our Academic Enrichment time is daily from 12:00-1:00pm. This time is specifically designed for our Kindergarten students to join as a group to work and progress through the advanced materials and lessons in the Montessori primary curriculum with Ms. Courtney. During this time Ms. Courtney also gives additional handwriting and journaling lessons. Throughout the school day in their classroom they are still working individually with their classroom teachers on these and other materials at their level. Please read through what we will be covering during this time together below.

Reading Group Overview | Ms. Faith
Junior Great Books is a foundational reading program that introduces students to a variety of literary genres, while teaching critical thinking and comprehension skills. Our Kindergarten students meet twice a week as a small reading group. During this time, they listen to a story being read to them and take turns reading the story aloud. Students pause during readings to think critically about the story, identify the different parts of the story, such as the characters and main ideas, make predictions about what might happen next, and learn new vocabulary words, using the context to understand the meaning. Each week I will email information about the current story and any assignment information for at home work.

4/03: Pronouns

  • Rules of the pronouns
  • Worksheets, grammar symbols, diagramming sentences

4/10: Introduction to Adjectives

  • Rules of the adjectives
  • Worksheets, grammar symbols, diagramming sentences

4/17:  Introduction to Adverbs

  • Rules of the adverbs
  • Worksheets, grammar symbols, diagramming sentences

4/24: Introduction to Prepositions

  • Rules of the prepositions
  • Worksheets, grammar symbols, diagramming sentences

Sight Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.

4/03: That

4/10:  Not

4/17: See

4/24: Big

Synonym Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.

4/03: NICE, friendly, courteous, good, pleasant, charming

4/10: SNEAKY, underhanded, dishonest, tricky, secretive, sly

4/17: BRIGHT, shiny, glowing, dazzling, lighted, vivid

4/24: DULL, dark, dreary, somber, boring, tedious

Things to do at home this month to reinforce our themes:

  • Look for our words of the week when reading a story, cut out pictures beginning with the letters of the week.
  • Practice using the different synonyms of the week in a sentence together.
  • Practice identifying different parts of speech when reading together.

I will be sending homework home to reinforce these lessons. Please turn homework into Ms. Courtney. Please email me if you have any questions:  cowens@thesmarterkids.com


Ms. Kristen’s April 2017 Monthly Overview

What I will learn this month in Ms. Kristen’s class:

Themes of the week | Classroom group lesson time (in addition to individual Montessori work time)

4/3: Introduction To The Continents/ All About Africa

  • The location of the continents on the globe.
  • Using the Continent Map Puzzle to locate the continents.
  • Where is Africa? What is the weather like in Africa?
  • Landmarks and Animals that are indigenous to Africa.
  • Making an African animal craft.
  • Friday, April 7th | Dads n Donuts

4/10: All About Africa

  • Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Egypt
  • Making an African mask.
  • Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Morocco
  • Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Madagascar
  • Learning all about Kenya and making African Drums
  • Friday, April 14th | NO SCHOOL | Easter break

4/17: All About Africa

  • Monday, April 17th | NO SCHOOL | Easter break
  • Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of South Africa
  • Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Zimbabwe
  • Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Ethiopian
  • Discuss how soccer is a very popular sport in Africa.
  • Making African masks.
  • Wednesday, April 19th | International Festival Rehearsal
  • Friday, April 21st | International Festival

4/24: All About Spring

  • Learning all about the signs of Spring.
  • Learning about the parts of the flower.
  • Life Cycles
  • What animals are born in the Spring?

Letters of the Week: Try to find objects that begin with each letter wherever you go with your child.

4/3: Aa

4/10: Cc

4/17: Rr

4/24: Tt

Sight Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.

4/3: and

4/10: can

4/17: rag

4/24: the

Things to do at Home this Month to reinforce our themes:

  • Try making a new recipe as a family from a country we’ve discussed in Africa.
  • Discuss with your child their favorite animal that they learned about from Africa.
  • Practice identifying the continents on a map of the world with your child.
  • Practice with your child the name of our planet, continent, country, state, city, and their address.

Mr. John’s April 2017 Monthly Overview

What I will learn at school this month in Mr. John’s Class:

 Themes of the week | Classroom group lesson time  (in addition to Montessori Work time)

 4/03: Countries from North & South America

  • North America: countries, culture, climate, & landmarks and cuisine
  • South America: countries, culture, climate, & landmarks and cuisine
  • Languages, flags and location on the map
  • Friday, April 7th | Dads n Donuts

4/10: Countries from Europe

  • Europe: countries, culture, climate
  • Famous landmarks and cuisine
  • Languages, flags and location on the map
  • Friday, April 14th | NO SCHOOL |Easter break

4/17: Countries from Europe and Africa

  • Monday, April 17th | NO SCHOOL | Easter break
  • Europe: countries, culture, climate, famous landmarks and cuisine
  • Africa: countries, culture, climate, famous landmarks and cuisine
  • Languages, flags and location on the map
  • Wednesday, April 19th | International Festival Rehearsal
  • Friday, April 21st | International Festival

4/24: Australia, Asia and Antarctica

  • Antarctica, The Arctic region, map, flag, climate and animals
  • Windiest Place on Earth; covered in ice
  • Australia: countries, culture, climate, famous landmark and cuisine
  • Asia: countries, culture, climate, and famous landmarks and cuisine
  • Languages, flags and location on the map

 **There will be no words or letters of the week for April 04-April 22. We will use this time to practice individual lines with students**

Things to do at home this month to reinforce our themes:

  • As a family, come up with a food or dessert that authentic from a different country and make it together.
  • Pretend to go on a trip. Place chairs in the middle of the room (as your plane), bring a map! Point to a country and fly there! Talk about the animals you would see, the weather, people and anything else you would see or experience!
  • We will be practicing individual lines and songs in class in preparation for the Festival, lines will be sent home next week; please practice your child’s lines at home too!