Ms. John, January 2017 Monthly Overview

January 2017

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

 Themes of the Week  (in addition to Montessori Work time)

 

1/04:     Review of Ground Rules

  • Ringing of the bell, circle walk, line time
  • Process of working with a materials, rolling mats, carrying trays & work areas
  • Respecting teachers, classmates and the materials
  • Grace and Courtesy lessons

 

1/09: Martin Luther King Jr./ Similarities and Differences

  • History of MLK, Rosa Parks.
  • Our similarities and differences (eyes, hair, gender and skin color)
  • MLK/ Rosa Parks skit
  • No School: Friday 1/13-Teacher In Service Day

 

1/16: Five Senses

  • Monday 1/16- NO SCHOOL (MLK Day)
  • Introduction to the Senses
  • Focus on each Sense throughout the week
  • Activities and experiments to support our knowledge of the senses

 

1/23: Skeletal System

  • Arms, Hands and Fingers
  • Ribs, Pelvis
  • Legs, Feet and Toes

 

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

1/04: Nn

1/09: Oo

1/16: Pp

1/23: Qq

 

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

1/04: BOB, fob, gob, job, lob, mob, rob

1/11: BUG, dug, hug, jug, mug, tug

1/18: BUN, fun, nun, run, sun

1/25: BUB, cub, hub, pub, rub, sub

 

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.
  • Play “I Spy” with items beginning with the letter of the week, or find things around your home that begin with the letter of the week.
  • Talk about what makes you the same and different from your child. Do you have the same hair and eye color? If not, where did they get their eye color from?
  • Take turns trying to write your name on a piece of paper blindfolded. Wow! We appreciate the sense of sight!
  • Quiz your child about the different bones of the body, see if they can point to where their Femur is or tell you what their Phalanges are.

 


Mr. John November 2016 Newsletter

The Mortar Between The Brick:

It seems that the assistants of the classroom rarely get the attention or accolades they really deserve.  We all know or should know that a classroom can NOT function without the support of the assistant teacher.  Their role goes beyond the title of assistant.  At Absorbent Minds Montessori School they are referred as Co-Teachers and rightly so.   They are an integral part of your child’s academic, social, and emotional development and without them I would not be able to present lessons and have a controlled, normalized classroom as I do now.  Sabrina, Kathleen, and I work as a well oiled machine.  It is almost like we all know what we are thinking throughout the day.  Each one of us have different responsibilities geared towards our strengths so we can maximize the production of the classroom (that last comment was my business background coming to the surface).  Without the assistant/co teacher the classroom would not function as it does now. Kudos to the Assistant. I thank the Co-Teachers for their dedication.  I am blessed to have two great teachers in my classroom.

 

Classroom Line Time:

The class went back in time and studied dinosaurs.  We learned the names of 5 dinos  (T-Rex, Triceratops, Stegosaurus, Pterodactyl, and Brachiosaurus) and if they were meat eaters (carnivores) or plant eaters (herbivores).  We learned when they lived and I introduced the phrases “extinct” and “fossils” what they meant.  We read “Dad is a Dinosaur”, and Dinosaurs go to School”

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(Cultural Subjects: Plant and Animal Puzzles)                                                                                                                                                                                                  (Math:  The 9 Tray)          

 

We then learned about Pilgrims and Thanksgiving.  Our craft was making feathers and putting what we are thankful for.  The feathers were put on turkeys that we placed on the bulletin board.  Hand print turkeys and pilgrim hats were also made for the holiday.

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(Sensorial: Puzzles)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  (Sensorial: Sorting)   

 

The third week in November, which was a short week, we discussed Buckeye Football.  It was appropriate since “THE GAME” was that Saturday.  If you child hears someone shout O-H they will give a resounding response of I-O!  They know Hang On Sloopy is the official rock and roll song of Ohio and will yell O-H-I-O and do the hand gestures as they sing the song.  Some of your children may refer to Xichigan as that state up north.  We watched several Ohio State Buckeye video highlights and the children especially loved “Script Ohio” and  TBDBITL    The score….30-27  Go Buckeyes!!!

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(My Breakfast Club taking over Ms. Kelly’s desk)                                                                                                                                                                                             (Cultural Subjects: Amphibian Bin)

 

Classroom Cultural Subjects:

We can count to ten in 18 different languages.  We can count in English, Latin, Spanish, Sign Language, German, French, Japanese, Greek, Arabic (with the Lebanese dialect), Italian, Russian, Romanian, Swedish, Tagolog, Hebrew, Korean, Hungarian, and Irish.

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(Math:  The 9 Tray)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       (Math: Addition Board)             

 

Academic Enrichment Group Time | Kindergarten
with Mr. John

We started out our month by introducing your children to high finance. We started out identifying coins (all different variations) of the penny, nickle, dime, and quarter. We looked at half dollars and dollar coins. We also went over the value of each coin. We then looked at the different “paper” bills.

We then changed our course to looking at what makes a living thing… a living thing. Living things reproduce, take in nourishment (eat), exchange gases (breath), grow, and move. We looked at different animals and the characteristics of animals. Mammals are vertebrates, warm blooded, have hair or fur, born alive, and drink mothers milk. Reptiles are vertebrates, cold blooded, dry scaly skin, born out of hard shell eggs. Amphibians are vertebrates, cold blooded, soft moist skin, born from jelly eggs. Birds are vertebrates, warm blooded, have feathers, born from hard shell eggs. Fish are vertebrates, cold blooded, have scales, born alive or from jelly eggs.

Cultural Subjects:
We can count to ten in 19 different languages.  We can count in English, Latin, Spanish, Sign Language, German, French, Japanese, Greek, Arabic (with the Lebanese dialect), Italian, Russian, Romanian, Swedish, Tagolog, Hebrew, Korean, Hungarian, Irish, and Kiswahili.

 

Reading Group | Kindergarten
with Ms. Kate

What I truly love about our reading club program is that with this particular curriculum it really helps the children get a better understanding of asking questions and sharing answers about the meaning of a story or poem. Throughout these past few weeks the children enjoyed reading The Tale Of Two Bad Mice, Bouki Cuts Wood, Night Into Dawn, and Fantasy. With each of these readings the children will read the selection several times and will work with it through a variety of drawing, writing, and oral activities. The children absolutely love to act out certain scenes in each of the selections. Dramatizations can make it easier for students to take in details and get plots straight. But they also help students interpret a story, as they think about what a character is thinking feeling. So the next time your child brings home their Junior Book Club reading book, Pick a story out and act it out together!!

 

Science Enrichment
by Ms. Kathleen

This month students learned about cylinder Strength. For example,  what happens when we try to balance books on paper wrapped into a cylinder? The children all placed a book on top a papers rolled up length wise to form a cylinder. They all watched as the paper cylinder supported all the books! The strength of the geometrical shape known as the cylinder is one of the most structurally sound and strongest shapes. Once the paper was made into a cylinder with the help of rubber bands the tube now supported the weight of each book the children placed on top.

Students also loved the “Frightened Pepper” experiment.  When Mr. John places pepper in a bowl for each child. He asked our scientists, what will happen when the children place a Q-tip with dish soap on it then placed a drop of soap on top of the water. The children all watched their own bowls as the pepper moved to the sides of the bowl. Why is this? It is because the dish soap lowers the surface tension. The water surface is strong enough to hold up light-weight objects such as pepper. Dish soap mixes with the water molecules and lowers the surface tension, when dish soap is placed near the pepper, the surrounding water has a high surface tension and exerts a force that pulls the pepper away from the dish soap.

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(Science: Cylinder Strength)                                                                                                                                                              (Science: Learning the behaviors                                                                                                                                                            of Polymers) 

 

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(Go Buckeyes!!!!!  Secret Message on PTFE)                                                                                                                             (Science:  Children acting like frightened                                                                                                                                                                    pepper)           

Music Enrichment
by Ms. Sabrina

The children learned so much in Music class this month. As a bonus they also had an awesome time (and the teachers do too)! The children used their high voices and their low voices. Ms. Lisa’s songs teach us lessons. For example, they learned about having choices and whether to have a bad attitude or a good attitude.

Students also worked with the bells and tambourines, switching back and forth.  They love using instruments in Music class. The children learned about sharing from one of Ms. Lisa’s songs and by passing and rolling a ball back and forth. A listening game was also played, using egg shakers. They listened for directions to stop, go, jump, spin, tip toe etc. Dancing included! A song about emotions was also learned. Emotions are just feelings, neither good nor bad. Tambourines were used, and our emotions were talked about. An echo game was also played, where voices bounced back and forth and we also had fun with our egg shakers again. Ms. Lisa also planned a dance where cooperation was required was executed well by the children. What another great lesson taught through music! They rocked it! The children also began to practice their Christmas songs this month, in preparation for the Christmas Show.  Our students learn so much through music and movement and Ms. Lisa’s lessons!

 

Art Enrichment
By Ms. Ame

The first week of our November Art class, Miss Michele brought the playground inside the classroom. The students used different shapes of paper to create their own three-dimensional art. The students created slides, swings, tunnels and other imaginative playground creations. These creations were very impressive!

Next, Ms. Michele had students use both oil pastels and watercolors to create an underwater scene. The students first created their scene by drawing underwater plants and different sea creatures using the oil pastels. After they had completed their creatures, they used blue tinted watercolors to create the underwater effect. The oil pastels “resist” against the watercolors so that they keep their original colors and only the white part of the paper turned blue. It was a surprise for some students and a great lesson to teach the art of resist!

Students also created self-portraits in Art this month. This can be very tricky, but Ms. Michele guided the students in drawing the shape of their face. She provided each child with a mirror so they were able to look directly at their own face to draw the shape and colors of their faces, encouraging them to notice every detail! Ms. Michele also talked about the proportions of their faces, such as how the distance from the top of their head to their eyes is equal to the distance from their eyes to their chin. This made it easier for the children to place their eyes, nose and lips in the correct place in their portrait.
The students enjoyed these art projects this month. Ms. Michele’s art projects are one of a kind. Keep an eye on your student’s folder for these special creations as they are sent home!


Mr. John’s December 2016 Monthly Overview

December 2016

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

 Themes of the Week  (in addition to Montessori Work time)

11/28—12/16  Christmas Show Practice

  • We will be taking time during our morning and afternoon line times to practice for our Christmas Show!
  • We have fun Christmas themed crafts and activities planned for our students!

 

Christmas Show Rehearsal (not a dress rehearsal)

December 14th | 6:00pm

Cuyahoga Falls High School

431 Stow Ave. Cuyahoga Falls, OH  44221

 

Christmas Show

December 16th | 6:30pm

Cuyahoga Falls High School

431 Stow Ave. Cuyahoga Falls, OH  44221

 

 12/22—1/03       Christmas Break—School Resumes Wednesday January 4th

 

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

  • Help prepare your child by talking with them about being on stage, how excited you will be to see them, and what to expect. Invite your family and friends, there will be plenty of seats!  You won’t want to miss this event, see you there!

 

 


Mr. John’s October 2016 Newsletter

Summer’s Almost Gone…That song(by The Doors) was running through my head even after Summer ended.  With all the jobs I worked time flew by way too quickly and I wish Summer lasted to the new year.  I resisted the coming of Fall or Autumn.   Although, I am not totally at fault for this resistance since we had 80 degree weather in mid October! This lead me to believe that it was ok to wear shorts heading into November.  Many students asked me if I was cold.  Yes, of course I was cold but I am from Ohio and we wear shorts in the Winter. It’s just what we do.  Well, some of us do.  As I told many students… You are smarter than Mr. John for dressing appropriately for the weather. This always brings giggles.   So, I guess I should really pack away my shorts and summer wear and unpack my sweaters, boots, and heavy coats.  Summer is truly gone.  Oh…. to have Summer last until the new year!

 

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Line Time Lessons:

Children love animals and I enjoy teaching the children about different types of animals.  This month we started discussing mammals.  I chose mammals because we are mammals.   We learned that mammals have hair or fur, are born alive, and drink mother’s milk when first born.  We learned that mammals are warm blooded (their body temperature remains constant) and that they are vertebrates (have spines).  We learned that dolphins and whales are mammals and that the bat is the only mammal that can fly.  The children love the mice and rats!!!

Then we slithered our way into discussing reptiles.  We came to the conclusion that the snake is the most popular reptile. We learned reptiles are cold blooded, vertebrates, lay hard shelled eggs, and have dry scales.  The children enjoyed seeing our own corn snake.  The geckos were just as appreciated.

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We hopped into our discussion of amphibians. We all agreed that the frog was the most popular amphibian and that amphibians are cold blooded and vertebrates.  We also learned that their skin is moist and soft and that they can live on BOTH land and water. Amphibians lay eggs but the eggs have no shell but are like jelly.   The children were encouraged to look for our Pac Man Frog and our Eastern Toads in our nature center.

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We swam to our friends called fish.  We learned that fish are cold blooded (their body temperature changes to the temperature in their environment) and are vertebrates.  We learned that most fish have scales, gills and fins, and some fish lay eggs and some fish are liver bearers (babies are born alive). We introduced a new word, “habitat”.  This is where something lives and the fish’s habitat is the water. The children were thrilled to learn that the shark is a fish.

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We then flew with the animals called birds.  Birds have feathers, are warm blooded, and are vertebrates.  All birds lay hard shelled eggs and have wings.  All birds have wings but some birds are flightless (cannot fly) such as the penguin, ostrich, and emu.

We can now count to ten in 1 languages (English, Sign Language, Latin, Spanish, German, French, Greek, Japanese, Arabic with the Lebanese dialect, Italian, Russian, Romanian, Swedish, Tagolog, and Hebrew).

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Academic Enrichment | Kindergarten Students
with Mr. John

My kindergarten students learned about land forms. Ask them what the definition of a lake, island, bay, peninsula, gulf (not the game), harbor, cape, isthmus(not Christmas), straight, chain of lakes, and archipelago.

Tick. tock. tick…  (time keeps on slippin slippin slippin into the future)…..  Telling time with hands and minute hashes.       We went over telling time to the hour(o’ clock), half past(:30), and quarter after(:15), quarter til(:45), and to the minute.

We can now count to ten in 16 languages (English, Sign Language, Latin, Spanish, German, French, Greek, Japanese, Arabic with the Lebanese dialect, Italian, Russian, Romanian, Swedish, Tagolog, Hebrew, and Korean).

 

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Reading Group |Kindergarten Students
with Ms. Kate

We have added such a wonderful program for our Kindergarten students. This program is called Junior Great Books Read- Aloud Program. This amazing program really stresses the enjoyment of literature for the children, but at the same time the children are able to develop comprehension, interpretive thin king, and oral and written language skills. Every Monday and Wednesday the kindergarten students and I meet together and read out loud a story or poem. We then have amazing group discussions, act out the story or poem, have creating writing sessions, and special art projects. For example during Halloween week the children had to brain storm and come up with a riddle. They absolutely loved creating this together. I hope you enjoy their riddle!
What Day Would It Be?

If there were vampires, witches, mummies, and ghosts.
Purple, black, orange, and green.
Playing pin the “Boo” on the ghost, and mummy wrapping.
Dressing up, tricks or treat, carving pumpkins, and class parties.
Cookies, candy corn, tootsie rolls, and air heads.
What day would it be?
How awesome was that riddle??!! Can you guess what day it is?

Enrichment Classes

Art Class
by Ms. Ame

This month Miss Michelle started out with continuing her leaf project. The students created their own leaf in the spirit of Fall. Michelle discussed warm and cool colors with the students using her color wheel. They used warm colored tiles inside their leaf and cool colored tiles on the outside, or the other way around depending on what the student had decided.

The second week, Miss Michelle had the students use their imagination. She introduced the students to mythological creatures and talked about how the creatures resembled a few animals mixed together. Michelle then brought out her board covered in different animals. The students each chose two animals and created their own creature.

The third and final week of Art in October was about Halloween. Miss Michelle talked about spooky art and Halloween, encouraging the students to share what scared them. The students then drew a picture depicting their fear and a self portrait of them being scared! It was quite a spooky lesson. Please keep your eyes open in the hallways as Miss Michelle will soon be hanging up the students art!

 

Science Class
by Ms. Kathleen

This month in Science class we saw quite a few different experiments!  I will showcase our two favorite below. The children were able to learn about solubles. The discovered what happens when you place pieces of different colored Skittles and Gobstoppers in a plate and add water to them. The colors run, collide, but do not mix. This is because each candy is coated with wax. The wax is not water soluble, and prevents any mixing from happening.
Next students were able to explore dry ice! When you place it into a pot and pour warm water over it, it looks like a witches pot!! What causes the bubbling steam? Pouring water over the dry ice causes the dry ice to warm up rapidly. This creates the fog we saw coming from the pot. Dry ice is frozen Carbon Dioxide. It is able to turn from a solid to a gas without going through the liquid stage. I think this was their favorite experiment this month! It created the most excitement!
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Music Class
by Ms. Sabrina

The children had so much fun in Music class this month. There were many smiles and laughter going around. The children learned a new song called Having Choices. They learned that they can choose to be kind. The instruments used were bells and tambourines. Our students loved using the instruments and dancing was also involved! The children then learned a song about love. The phrase ” I love you ” was frequently used. For this song the instrument used was an egg shaker. Added to that was a song about kindness. What great values for children to learn! They learned a song about sharing by passing and rolling a ball back and forth. More balls were added and the children did so well with sharing them. They also learned a song called Please and Thank You. An egg shaker was also again used and of course the magic words please and thank you. The children skipped, galloped and listened for directions, following them well. They had to wait until everyone had an instrument, and when Ms. Lisa told them to, they could pick up their instrument and play with her. This teaches the students self-control, and how to be patient. The young musicians have improved their ability to follow Ms. Lisa’s lead, and wait so patiently. Along with learning important musical terms and skills, we got to sing some old favorites like Skinamarinky Dinky Dink, and Skip to My Lou. Music class sure is fun with Ms. Lisa!

 


Mr. John’s November 2016 Monthly Overview

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

 Themes of the Week  (in addition to Montessori Work time)

10/31:    Insects / Arachnids

  • Characteristics of insects, examples of insects (invertebrates)
  • Antennae, head, thorax, abdomen, six legs (some have wings)
  • Characteristics of arachnids, examples of arachnids, 8 legs (invertebrates)

11/07: Dinosaurs

  • Naming and Identifying Dinosaurs
  • Triceratops, Stegosaurus, Pterodactyl, Brachiosaurus
  • Plant eaters (herbivores), Meat eaters (carnivores)
  • Where the Dinosaurs lived and how long ago they lived
  • Fossils and Extinction

11/14: Thanksgiving/ Native Americans

  • Mayflower, Native Americans
  • When the Pilgrims came to America
  • Who the Pilgrims were and why they came
  • The Mayflower
  • Native American shelters, nomadic, settlers

11/21: Family

  • Members of a family, family traditions and holidays
  • Family birthdays, vacations
  • Family pets

Harvest Party 11/22/16

Wednesday-Friday NO SCHOOL

 

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

10/31: Kk
11/07: Ll
11/21: Mm

 

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

10/31: OX, box, fox, lox, pox, sox
11/07: BOT, cot, dot, got, hot, lot, not, pot, tot
11/14: BOP, cop, hop, mop, pop, top

 

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.
  • Play “I Spy” with items beginning with the letter of the week, or find things around your home that begin with the letter of the week.
  • Explore your neighborhood. See if you can find any fossil plant prints on rocks in your yard or neighborhood.
  • Make fall crafts together to help decorate your family Thanksgiving table.
  • Look through family photo albums together and talk about your family. What does each family member do for a job?  Where did you grow up?  What unique traditions does your family have?

 


I’m All Lost In A Supermarket……

The Summer of 2016 was a busy busy busy Summer for Mr. John.  I took on a few Summer jobs to pass the time more quickly and to earn some extra cash money.  I have been working child care at the church I attend for the past few years, but that is only a few hours on a Sunday morning.  I was recommended to do home care for children who have mental disabilities.  I was not sure how I would do with this job.  Would I like it?  Would it be too difficult?  It turns out I love it!  I love getting to know the children, their families, and pets.  These children are sweet, great, loving children.  I feel as if I am part of their family every time I work with them.  I feel working with these children has made me a better teacher and a better person.   Mid-Summer I was approached from an employee from Blossom Music Center because they needed help for The Warped Tour (Security, new PC term is Crowd Management).  I said, why not, interviewed, and got the gig.  It was a long, sweaty, hot day but it was a blast.  I was asked if I would work more shows, to which I agreed.  Again, it was a blast (even the country shows).  I thought once concerts ended I would be done, but I was contacted to work security (ooops, Crowd Management) at Blossom’s haunted house.  People always told me I was a people-person.  Also, I’ve been told I had a knack with “kids and dogs”.  With that said…. my next employment endeavor, dog walking.

“It is so quiet in here.  It is so calm.”  This is what I have been hearing from parents and current teachers about my room.  Usually it takes a good 3-4 months for my room to become normalized, but this year it is on its way to being normalized in about a month.  I credit those around me for the earlier than usual success.  Miss Kathleen and Miss Sabrina are wonderful teachers and work well with the students.  They are fun yet firm and know how to handle difficult situations well.  When I mentioned “those around me” I didn’t only mean the teachers but I want to give credit to the older students, the leaders of the room.  They are showing the newer/younger students how to work with materials and are guiding them through the classroom.

 

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Line Time Lessons:

We started out the year by learning the ground rules of the classroom.  Use walking feet in the room.  Use inside voices. Keep our hands/bodies to ourselves. BE RESPECTFUL.

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We learned about healthy habits.  Some healthy habits are washing our hands, brushing our teeth, eating healthy foods, and my favorite, getting enough sleep.

In the vein of healthy habits we delved into another of my favorite subjects, food.  We leaned about the different food groups, grains and cereals, fruits and vegetables, dairy (my fave), meats and proteins, and sweets.

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We explored what makes a living thing, a living thing.  We all knew the rats were living and my shoe was not living but why?  Living things reproduce or have babies.  They grow.  They eat or take in nourishment.  They breathe or exchange oxygen.  And we all agreed living things move (I’m still not sold on the locomotion thing).  The big question was… are plants living things?  We went through the list and determined plants are living things.

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Children love animals and I enjoy teaching the children about different types of animals.  This month we started discussing mammals.  I chose mammals because we are mammals.   We learned that mammals have hair or fur, are born alive, and drink mother’s milk when first born.  We learned that mammals are warm blooded (their body temperature remains constant) and that they are vertebrates (have spines).  We learned that dolphins and whales are mammals and that the bat is the only mammal that can fly.

 

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We had an University of Akron Field Student join our teaching team.  Here is Shelly working with children.

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Cultural Subjects:

We can count to ten in 11  languages (English, Sign Language, Latin, Spanish, German, French, Greek, Japanese, Arabic with the Lebanese dialect, Italian).

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Academic Enrichment (Kindergarten students | Group lesson with Mr. John)

Let’s travel around the world!  This past month we trekked around the world.  We learned where, and fun facts about the seven continents.  I made sure that out kindergartners knew “Central America” was not a continent, but part of North America.  We learned about the cardinal directions including N.E., S.E., N.W,, and NW.  My K Kids know where the Equator and Prime Meridian are, and how the divide the Earth into hemispheres.

We took a closer look at North America (because we live there).  We identified the bodies of water that surround our continent (Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, Hudson Bay, Gulf of Mexico, and The Great Lakes (H.O.M.E.S).  We then learned many fun facts about the state of Ohio and what are Ohio’s surrounding states, their nickname, and their abbreviation.  We ended learning about all the places we live.  Our galaxy, our solar system, planet, hemisphere, continent, country, state, county, city and out street address.

 

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Cultural Subjects:

We can count to ten in 12  languages (English, Sign Language, Latin, Spanish, German, French, Greek, Japanese, Arabic with the Lebanese dialect, Italian, Russian).

 

The children are having so much fun learning in Art, Science and Music!

Art:

In Art students are learning about monochromatic colors, primary colors and secondary colors. The children enjoyed painting, as well as learning about complimentary colors and making warm and cool colored mosaics.

Science:

In Science they are learning about “chemical reactions”, ” the mass in a specified volume”, ” density “, and ” the difference in the weight of two objects of the same size.”

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Music:

Music, of course is a hit with the children! They absolutely love the songs, as well as the movement activities presented. The children loved playing with the bells, the castanets, the maracas, and the rhythm sticks among others! Please converse with your children about these amazing classes.


Mr. John’s October 2016 Monthly Overview

October 2016

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

 Themes of the Week  (in addition to Montessori Work time)

10/03: Reptiles

  • Introduction to reptiles, examples of reptiles
  • All reptiles are cold blooded, vertebrates (spine)
  • All reptiles have scales, lay eggs with hard shell

10/10: Amphibians

  • Introduction to amphibians, examples of amphibians
  • Amphibians are cold blooded, live on land and water
  • All amphibians have soft, moist skin and are vertebrates (spine)

10/17: Fish

  • Introduction to fish, examples of fish
  • All fish are cold blooded, live in water, most have scales
  • Fish are vertebrates, most have gills and fins

10/24: Birds

  • Introduction to birds, examples of birds
  • All birds have feathers and are warm blooded
  • All birds are vertebrates, lay eggs with shells, have wings
  • Penguins are a birds that can’t fly

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

10/03: Gg
10/10: Hh
10/17: Ii
10/24: Jj

 

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

10/03: BID, did, hid, kid, lid, rid,
10/10: BIT, fit, hit, kit, lit, mit, pit, sit
10/17: BIN, fin, kin, pin, sin, tin, win
10/24: BIP, dip, hip, lip, nip, rip, sip, tip

 

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.
  • Play “I Spy” with items beginning with the letter of the week, or find things around your home that begin with the letter of the week.
  • Go to the Zoo together, and talk about what each animal is? A Bird, A Mammal, Reptile, Amphibian, or Fish.
  • Read a book together about your child’s favorite animal! Is it a Vertebrate or Invertebrate?  What are the babies called?

Mr. John’s August/ September 2016 Monthly Overview

Mr. John’s August/September 2016 Monthly Overview

What I will learn this month in Mr. John’s Class…
(In addition to Montessori Work Time)

8/22- 9/29          Ground Rules / Introduction of Materials

  • Ringing of the bell, circle walk, line time
  • Process of working with a materials, rolling mats, carrying trays & work areas
  • Respecting teachers, classmates and the materials
  • Daily demonstration of materials from all areas of the classroom

9/05: Healthy Habits

  • The importance of washing hands, bathing, brushing teeth (eliminate germs, prevent cavities)
  • The importance of sleep. Why we need sleep & sleep cycle
  • The importance of exercise (walking, running, swimming, etc)
  • The importance of eating well (“grow foods”)

9/12: Food Groups

  • Eating Healthy, Moderation
  • Focus on the different food groups, sorting foods belonging in each
  • Servings and examples of each

9/19: Living / Non Living

  • Living things (grow, reproduce, obtain and use energy, exchange gases) adapt to their environment
  • Non Living things, examples
  • Categorization of Living and Non Living

9/26: Mammals

  • Introduction to mammals, examples of mammals
  • All mammals have hair, warm blooded, eat mother’s milk
  • All mammals are vertebrates (spine), lungs to breathe, born alive
  • Bats are the ONLY mammal that can fly

 

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

8/22: Aa

8/29: Bb

9/05: Cc

9/12: Dd

9/19: Ee

9/26: Ff

 

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

8/22: BAT, cat, fat, hat, mat, pat, sat

8/29: BAN, can, dan, fan, man, pan, tan

9/05: BAP, map, cap, gap, lap, nap, sap

9/12: BAG, sag, jag, lag, nag, tag, rag wag

9/19: BAD, dad, fad, had, lad, mad, sad

9/26: BIG, dig, fig, jig, pig, rig, wig

 

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

  • Make a collage with pictures and objects that start with the letters of the week.
  • While eating together, categorize your meal into food groups with your child.
  • Follow this link to find a worksheet to complete together for living and non living things. (Circle the living things and color together)http://worksheetplace.com/index.php?function=DisplaySheet&sheet=Circle-the-living-things&links=2&id=&link1=241&link2=257
  • Read a book about your child’s favorite mammal together!

 

 


Mr. John May/June 2016 Newsletter

Line Time

The circle of life studied last week always involves food and eating to stay alive.  This is where we looked at several food chains. We looked at a 2 part food chain involving a mouse and grains.  We looked at several 3 part food chains such as snake/mouse/grains, hawk/snake/mouse, bear/big fish/small fish.  We went so far to look at some 4 part food chains Hawk/snake/mouse/grain.  We learned about being on the top of the food chain and the bottom of the food chain.  We also learned the animal that “hunts” for the food is the predator and the animal that gets eaten is the prey.

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The second week of May was a great time to talk about the seasons.  We started with spring and talked about how it gets a bit warmer but we get a lot of rain and plants and flowers start to come out.   Then we talked about summer and how it is hotter because the earth tilts closer to the sun and the days are longer.  This is when plants grow tall and flowers are in full bloom.  Autumn or fall comes next and the weather gets a bit chillier.  The leaves turn beautiful colors then fall to the ground.  The final season is winter and it is the coldest season of the year.  The earth is tilted further away from the sun and the days are shorter.  We end up getting snow in the winter.

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Put on your space suit and get ready to explore our solar system.  We started with discussing the planets nearer the sun them worked our way to the furthest reaches of our solar system.  Mercury is our first planet and is the closest to the sun.  Venus is the second planet.  Even though it is further away from the sun it is the hottest planet in our solar system.  The third planet is near and dear to our hearts.  It is the planet earth.  It is the only planet in our solar system that has life.  The next planet is Mars and is known as the red planet.  The next planet is the biggest planet in our solar system and has a big red storm that has been raging for centuries.  That planet is Jupiter.  Saturn is the next planet and has really cool ring around it that are pieces of rock and ice.  Uranus is next and it spins up and down instead of side to side like all the other planets.  Neptune is the last planet in our solar system.  I did not forget about Pluto.  Oh! Poor Pluto.  Pluto was once a planet but now has been demoted to a dwarf planet.

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We had two alumni readers.  Sophia who is now third grader at Richardson and James who is now a fourth grader at Dunbar.

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Cultural Subjects

We are holding at counting to ten in 27 different languages.

 

Academic Enrichment Lesson with kindergarten students

We started May by discussing the preposition.  Where oh where can we find a preposition?  Well, I told them a preposition was a “where word” NOT a “werewolf”.  The kindergarteners brushed up on their knowledge of the interjection.  The interjection adds emotion to the sentence but we did find out that if we eliminate the interjection from the sentence, the meaning of the sentence really does not change.  We learned what punctuation is used at the end of a sentence.  We use a period (.) when we are stating something.  We use a question mark (?) when we are asking a question and we use an exclamation mark (!) when we show excitement or a lot of emotion. I introduced the students to the rules of capitalization.  We learned that words at the beginning of the sentence, the word I, and proper nouns need to be capitalized.    We played “mad libs” and ended our lessons on grammar by watching Grammar Rock.  For the last week we just reflected on our year, what we learned, and our favorite parts of kindergarten class.  It was a GREAT year!

 

Enrichments

The children sure did enjoy Music, Science and Art classes this year! I must admit, so did I. Ms. Lisa, Mr. John and Ms. Michele’s love for the children showed in the time they put in preparing for the classes, as well as their interaction with each other. The children loved the hands on activities. I saw some activities replicated at home, safely and enthusiastically with some great parent involvement! Thank you for sharing your children with us. Have a safe and awesome Summer!

 


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Mr. John’s April 2016 Newsletter

Fast Car….. 

I am afraid I am entering a new chapter in my life.  My days of the mini van are gone and ushers in the era of the sedan.  I recently traded my life inside the Honda Odyssey for the Honda Accord.  I never realized what a difference this would make.  The sedan is FAST!  I don’t think I will know what the true gas mileage is for a few months because of my abrupt stops, jack rabbit starts, and taking corners like I am in the Grand Prix (without fear of tipping). I actually look forward getting behind the wheel of this CAR. It has an “AUX” jack so I can listen to my Spotify from my cell phone and have no qualms about blasting “Sweet Emotion” by Aerosmith with the windows down.  My niece who is 15 years old laughed hysterically when she saw me behind the wheel of something other than a mini van.  She looked over the CAR, hopped in, laughed, got out walked away laughing, stopped, turned around to take another look, doubled over and started to laugh harder.  She said she NEVER saw me drive anything besides a minivan and this will take time for her to get used to this new CAR.

 

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Fun with fractions                                                Dem Bones!

 

Line Time 

Jambo Bwana and What a Small world it is.  Those thoughts and music is still ringing in my ears.  As you know these were the songs we sang at the International Festival.  We learned about all the continents and some of the individual countries within the continents.  The students had fun learning about the climates, foods, clothes, and differences of how children attend school. I wanted to thank all of those who came in and talked about different countries.  This adds so much to International Festival month.  All the presentations are fun, informative, and the children and teachers enjoy it.  It never ceases to amaze me how much our students can learn in a short amount of time.  They did a fabulous job with their lines and performing the songs.  Not to mention how colorful the stage was with their costumes.  I cannot give enough thanks to the people who prepared the food!  Who didn’t gain ten pounds that night?

 

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Kathleen having fun at a Turkish wedding

 

20160420_100234   Learning about Lebanon

 

20160428_100451  Learning about Nigeria

 

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Learning about Turkey

 

 

 

 

 

20160427_101911-1  Learning about Tanzania

 

20160429_133124    Learning about Australia and New Zealand

 

 

 

Views from the classroom

 

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Reading Is Fundamental (RIF)

 

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Hard workers

 

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1,2,3…………. 100 board

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cultural Subjects

My line time and the kindergarten class count to ten in 27 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 and Turkish!

 

 

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Fun with African drums and shakers                    Proud of their African drums and shakers

 

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Friendship

 

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Multiplication

 

Academic Enrichment with Kindergarten Students

In the afternoon lesson with kindergartners, we continued our work with grammar.  We started by We looked at the adjective which describes nouns and pronouns, the adverb which describes the verb and usually ends in “ly”, the conjunction which connects two sentences or thoughts and acts like a bridge, and the preposition which is a “where” word not a werewolf.

 

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Diagraming sentences

 

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Who said adverbs were difficult?  My kindergarteners don’t think so!

Cultural Subjects

My line time and the kindergarten class count to ten in 27 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 and Turkish!

 

Science
This month the children did two experiments in their Science class, one is called Dancing Spagetti, where they learned about carbonation, and one consisting of packing peanuts which dissolved in water. The children thoroughly enjoyed both experiments.
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Where did that packing peanut go?
Music
This month the children sang hello to Ellie the parrot, Freida the frog, and Jerry the Giraffe. Ms. Lisa focused this month on high and low sounds. On the keyboard, we played high sounds on the right and low sounds on the left. We played the cat and mouse game again to review the difference between high and low. Next we practiced listening for sounds on the keyboard that were from nature, were animals, and instruments. Then we reviewed the music notes of whole, quarter, half, and eighth. Ms. Lisa had the children clap the beats and then use rhythm sticks to practice the beats of the notes in a song.
Art
During the first week of art we finished up our yarn weaving from last month.  For the next week we did an art project for Australia. Each child drew an animal from Australia with pencil. Then they painted in the animal with dots using cotton swabs. In our third art lesson, we created litter bugs from recycled materials for Earth Day! To finish up the month of April, we painted our litter bugs many bright colorful colors!
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Aborigine Art