Ms. Kate’s October 2016 Newsletter

I can’t believe how fast October flew by! I love the fall month as we watch the colors of the trees turn yellow, red, and orange, and the crisp smell of the fall air. Our classroom was super busy learning about apples, autumn, pumpkins, bats, and spiders. We also enjoyed a field trip to the pumpkin patch! 

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During our first week, the children had fun learning about the life cycle of an apple. The children learned how the apple starts as a seed, then goes to seedling, tree, and then blossoms into apples. With this activity, the children learned the concepts of sequencing, plant life cycles, and vocabulary development. We also had fun learning about Johnny Appleseed. We discussed how he was a pioneer who traveled throughout the American frontier by planting apple seeds. We also discussed how he helped people along the way. The children really loved talking about him as they continued to ask questions about him throughout the week! We then had so much fun having an apple tasting and then using our math skills to graph our favorite apples. Lastly, our class made homemade applesauce together. The children really enjoyed slicing the apples, placing them into the pot and adding all of the ingredients. The children are able to learn about measurement, gain fine motor skills, and work together! 

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Our second week was full of autumn fun! We started out with a science experiment called “Why do leaves change color?” First our friends gathered different colored leaves and we separated the yellow, red, and brown ones into a mason jar filled with rubbing alcohol and then placed coffee filters into each jar. The children then were able to see the color absorbing the liquid. As the liquid traveled up the coffee filters it separates all the colors that were inside the leaf. During this time we explained to the children how during the winter, the days get shortened affecting the amount of sun the leaves are exposed to, and how the plants go into a resting state and live off the glucose they stored over the summer. The children really loved this science experiment! During the week we also had fun collecting leaves and sorting them by color by using a graph. By doing this activity, the children are learning how to categorize what they are seeing, and also learn how to group items. We also had fun making leaf rubbings and learning about the parts of the leaf!  

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The third week we focused on pumpkins! The children really enjoyed learning about the life cycle of the pumpkin. During this time, the children had to cut out a pumpkin and glue the stages of the life cycle in order around the pumpkin. In this activity, they were gaining their fine motor skills by coloring and gluing and also learning about sequencing. The next lesson we did was all about the five senses. I placed a pumpkin in the middle of our circle. We then had a discussion on the five senses and what each of them meant. Then each child went up the pumpkin and was able to touch and feel the pumpkin, smell the pumpkin, and used their ears to see if the pumpkin made noise. We then created a chart and used descriptive words (adjectives) to talk about how we used our five senses. The next activity we did that week was a sink and float pumpkin science experiment. Before we began, the children were able to give their hypothesis about what they think the big and small pumpkins will do in the water and we charted their answers. With this experiment the children learned language development, they are able to make connections with real life experiences, promote scientific thinking such as predictions, observations, comparisons, data gathering, cause and effect, and also concentration. We also had fun having a pumpkin investigation day! With our pumpkin the children measured around the pumpkin, we used Legos to see how high our pumpkin was, counted the lines on the pumpkin, and then had fun counting the seeds inside our pumpkin. The children learned the concepts of measurement, linear counting, and using descriptive language. What a fun week we had!  

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The last week was all about bats and spiders. We first learned about how spiders are not an insect but an arachnid. We then drew out the parts of the spider. The next day we created a web about everything we learned about spiders. Throughout the week we crated a chart called KWL, which stands for “What we know, What we want to know, and what we learned.” We started out discussing what they already know about bats, then we had a discussion about the things they would like to know about bats. We then read a few books on bats and we then reviewed everything we learned from together from those books. The purposes of the KWL strategy is to elicit students’ prior knowledge of the topic, set a purpose for reading, and help students monitor their comprehension skills.

The last week we also had so much fun going to Kingsway Farm and having our Halloween party! Thank you to all of my parents who helped out with everything. Without you we wouldn’t have been able to have such an amazing party! See you in November!!!  

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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!

 


Ms. Kate’s November 2016 Monthly Overview

11/01: Nutrition

  • How can we keep healthy, what foods can we eat?
  • Food groups, healthy habits and exercise
  • What are germs, how are they spread?
  • The difference between healthy and non healthy foods
  • Learning about My Plate

Afternoon group time with Ms. Ame: Various crafts, songs, and activities about nutrition

11/07: Transporatation

  • Different types of vehicles
  • How we travel
  • Creating a water, sky, and land chart
  • Learning about traffic lights
  • All about maps

Afternoon group time with Ms. Ame: Having fun learning about transportation, learning new songs, and doing various transportation crafts.

 

11/14: History of Thanksgiving

  •  All about Pilgrims
  •  All about Native Americans and Squanto
  •  The Mayflower
  •  Being Thankful

Afternoon group time with Ms. Ame: Having fun learning the history of Thanksgiving with Ms. Ame

11/21: Thankfulness and Turkey Day crafts

  •  I’m Thankful tree
  •  Tissue paper turkey
  •  Mayflower craft
  •  Tuesday is our Harvest party!
  •  No school Wednesday-Friday! Happy Thanksgiving!

Afternoon group time with Ms. Ame: Thanksgiving crafts and songs.

 

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

11/01: Hh
11/07: Ii
11/14: Jj
11/21: Kk

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

11/01: dog
11/07: tree
11/14: lid
11/21: zap

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

  •  While reading a book have your child point to all of the letter of the week she/he can find. Have them do this with the sight words as well. Play I‐Spy using things that only start with the letter of the week/ sight words.
  •  Go on a family hike together
  •  Have your child help you with your grocery list. Cook dinner together!
  •  Make a book about all of the things you and your family are thankful for. Share your book with your family on Thanksgiving Day.
  •  Look through magazines together and make a collage of all the healthy foods you find.

Ms. Kate’s September 2016 Newsletter

Welcome back everyone! I can’t believe how fast summer flew by and the new school year is in session again. Thanks so much for those who came to “Meet the Teacher Night.” It was wonderful seeing the returning students and parents and meeting all of our new families. The first month was filled with lessons on respect, friendship, family, and all about ourselves.

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The first week the classroom was full of laughter and excitement. During our line time we discussed the rules of the classroom: that we will always respect each other, we will try our best, we are a team, we learn from our mistakes, we create, and we will always celebrate each others successes. Throughout this month the children have been praising one another during work time and helping each other when they see someone using a word the wrong way. It has been a pleasure seeing and hearing the children remembering all of the rules we have gone over. Also, during the first week I have been introducing different words little by little to the children. I want the children to feel comfortable and have an understanding of the different words when they are using them. Also, Ms. Ame started a Kindness Club for our classroom. Each week she has been sending home different things that the children and their families could do together that show an act of kindness. This is such a special thing for the children to be working on this whole year, and I cant wait to see and hear everything the children have been doing!

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Using the word “please,” “thank you,” “excuse me,” and “I’m sorry” were the lessons we learned while we were discussing the topic of respect. For the first lesson, we lead a discussion about when we should say “please” and why it is important to use it. The children then created a word poem based on each letter within the word “please”. Throughout the week, the children created word poems and sentences while using the other kindness words. The children have been working hard practicing using our kindness words.

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The second week we focused on friendship. We started out by discussing the meaning of being a good friend and what qualities are in a good friend. We then read the book Do You Want To Be My Friend? By Eric Carle. The children discussed the mouse’s’ search for a good friend and what qualities were in each friend. After the story the children were able to create a friendship chian. The second lesson was called The Good Friends Chart. We read a friendship book and then brain stormed together about all the qualities of a good friend and what that means. Ella said, “ I want someone who is nice.”Oliver then said, “ I want someone who is funny,” and Teagan said, “I want someone who will listen to me.” After everyone shared their qualities we placed our answers on the chart paper. Throughout the week the children learned how playing together can foster friendships and build a community. The children then had so much fun creating a friendship quilt. Also during our friendship week we learned many songs about friendship . On the last day, our class created a “Friendship Web.” The children were able to discuss what friends should sound like when they are together, how it feels when friends are together, what it looks like when friends are together, and the qualities in a friend.

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The third week we discussed “All About Me.” We started out by reading the book I’m Special Because. We then talked about the differences and similarities in everyone’s appearance. We then created a graph about hair and eye color. The children were able to go around the room and see who had brown, black, red, or blonde hair. They did the same for eye color. The children were then able to see how everyone’s appearance is not the same. The next lesson the children created a bar graph about everyone’s birthday. I read the book On The Day You Were Born. We talked about how everyone’s birthday is different and that makes us unique and special. The children then decorated their own birthday cupcake. Throughout the week the children did an activity called “ my fingerprints are unique” The children learned about how everyone on the world has different prints and that’s one of the reasons why we are so special. We also went on a name hunt and sang songs about how special we are!

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The last week was all about our families. We first lead a discussion on what they think a family is. Natalie said, “ My mommy and daddy.” Ella said, “My sister, mommy and daddy.” Matthew said “ My dad, mom, Oliver, and Andrew.” During the week we discussed how not all families are the same, the different houses & places families live, the traditions families celebrate, and the special things that we love doing with our family. During this week the children and families created their own family trees. On the last day, the children were able to stand up at line time and share their family tree among their friends. It was so wonderful to see the children and their parents work and come together to create something so awesome!

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Again, this has been such a wonderful first month back to school. I look forward to the upcoming months with all of you as we head into fall and winter.

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.


Ms. Kate’s October 2016 Monthly Overview

What I will learn at school this month in Ms. Kate’s Class…

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

09/03: All About Apples

  •  Johnny Appleseed
  •  Life cycle of an apple
  •  Apple graphing, apple tasting and cooking with apples

Afternoon lessons:

  • Reviewing the letter “Ee”
  • Baking with Ms. Ame
  • Making different apple crafts

10/10: Autumn

  •   Why do leaves change color? Science experiment
  •   Charting what colors we find. Nature walk
  •   Having fun with leaf rubbings
  •   Singing songs about fall

Afternoon lessons:

  • Reviewing the letter “Ff”
  • Fall crafts
  • Fall songs
  • Reviewing calendar and weather

10/17: Pumpkins

  •   Life cycle of a pumpkin
  •   Using our five senses
  •   Sink or float with pumpkins
  •   Pumpkin investigations
  •   Pumpkin songs and finger plays

Afternoon lessons:

  • Reviewing the letter “Gf”
  • Pumpkin science experiment
  • Fun fall crafts

10/24: Halloween

  •  History of Halloween
  •  All about spiders
  •  Halloween safety
  •  Field Trip to the Pumpkin Farm!

Afternoon lessons:

  • Reviewing the letter “Hh”
  • Reviewing calendar and weather
  • Halloween crafts
  • Halloween songs

 

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

  • 10/03: Ee
  • 10/10: Ff
  • 10/17: Gg
  • 10/24: Hh

 

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

  • 10/03: cat
  • 10/10: red
  • 10/17: mat
  • 10/24: boo

 

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

  •   While reading a book have your child point to all of the letter of the week she/he can find. Have them do this with the rhyming words as well. Play I‐Spy using things that only start with the letter of the week/ rhyming words.
  •   Go apple picking! Cut an apple in half and create apple prints. When you cut an apple, count together to see how many seeds there are. Every day you can create a new apple dish (applesauce, baked apple crisps, apple pie, etc.) Enjoy the Fall!
  •   Visit a pumpkin patch and bake pumpkin seeds together!
  •   Go on a “Fall Walk” together. Talk about what colors you see, the sounds you hear, and what the air smells like. Collect leaves and take them home for a leaf rubbings. Go to a pumpkin patch and find a pumpkin together. Guess how many seeds are in‐ side your pumpkin. When you clean out the pumpkin count the seeds together.

Ms. Kate’s August/September Monthly Overview 2016

What I am doing in Ms. Kate’s Classroom
in addition to Montessori Work Time…

 

8/22‐
09/02 Rules of the Classroom

  • We respect each other
  • We try our best/we learn from our mistakes
  • We are a team/we celebrate each other’s success
  • Tour of the classroom and introductions of materials
  • Using the words “please, thank you, excuse me, I’m sorry.” Write a class poem to emphasize the use of polite words.

9/06: Friendship

  • Work on social skills/ how to develop friendship
  • What are good qualities in a friend?
  • How do friends build community?
  • Create together a class web of friendship words
    • Second line time: Going over calendar, weather, and Spanish words and numbers. Friendship lessons and crafts!

9/12: All About Me!

  • Our similarities and differences
  • I’m special because…
  • Our Birthdays
  • Identifying our emotions.
  • Second Line Time: Going over calendar, weather, Spanish weather and words. Having fun doing all about me activities and games!

9/19: Family

  • What is a family
  • Graphing our families/ family celebrations
  • Create a family tree together (Due Monday 9/16)
  • Second line time: Going over calendar, weather, Spanish numbers and words. Having fun reading books on Families, creating a family portrait, and singing songs about families.

 

9/26: Respect

  • Charting about what listener’s do
  • What are peacemaker’s?
  • All about respect
  • Manners
  • Second line time: going over calendar,weather,Spanish numbers and words. Having fun reading books on showing respect to our friends, activities on manners, and also some fun crafts!

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

  • 9/06: Aa

  • 9/12: Bb
  • 9/19: Cc
  • 9/26: Dd

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

  • 9/06: Cat

  • 9/12: Pig
  • 9/19: Ball
  • 9/26: Bug

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

  • While reading a book have your child point to all of the A’s she/he can find. Have them do this with the sight word “the.” Play I‐Spy using things that only start with the letter A.
  • Make a collage with pictures and objects that start with the letter B.
  • Place words around the house and see if your child can find the word “to.” When your child has gathered all of his/her “to” 
cards count together how many cards they have found.
  • Make a kindness jar. Each day pick an act of kindness out of the jar and act on it:)
  • You and your child write a special letter to a friend.

Ms. Kate’s May/June 2016 Newsletter

May was such a busy month! Our class dove into water and learned about the sea and jumped into a space shuttle and flew into outer space. Our class also had fun learning about plant life cycles and had a blast during Grandparents Day and at our field trip to the Zoo!

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The first two weeks we explored the animals of the ocean. We first started by defining mammals. I explained to them that they are warm blooded and both land and sea mammels have hair on their bodies and give birth to their babies. The first mammals we talked about were the dolphin and whale. The children learned that dolphins can stay under water for 15 minutes, but can’t breathe under water so they have to come up for air. The children learned that they live in groups of ten to twelve and that there are thirty-six different kinds of dolphins. During this discussion we talked about how the Killer Whale is the largest dolphin.

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The second mammal in the sea that we discussed were whales. The children learned that since whales breathe like us they can only stay under water for a short period of time and then they have to come up for air by using their blowhole on the top of their heads. They also learned there are two types of whales: the Baleen and the Toothed whale. The children were interested in what whales ate and how fast they can swim. Together we looked through books and found out that whales can swim up to 30 mph and that baleen whales eat krill and toothed whales eat small fish and other small mammals. The last mammal of the sea we discussed was the Manatee. The children found out that manatees were first found out by fishermen who saw the long tails and thought they were looking at mermaids! The children also learned that they could weigh as much as 2000 lbs., and can swim up to 20 mph hour but usually cruise around the sea at 2 to 6 mph. Also, during that week the children made a Venn diagram about fish and mammals. The children did a great job with this activity. They knew that fish do not have lungs, but have gills instead. Mammals are warm-blooded and fish are not. That most mammals live on land, but fish have to stay in the water and both have a vertebrate. What smarties I have!!

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We then focused on outer space. During this time we learned about the solar system, stars and constellations, galaxies, the eight planets, the sun and moon, the space shuttle, and the first man who walked on the moon. Wow, what a busy couple of weeks! We first stared out by creating a web of the solar system. Throughout our space lesson the children added the information they have learned onto the web. During our lesson, the children learned about the eight planets since the 9th planet is now a dwarf planet. They learned the order of the planets and neat little facts about each one. They loved learning about Jupiter and its famous hurricane like storm. They thought it was pretty cool that Mars is called the “red planet” due to the red dirt, dust and sky. We also learned about how there are thousands of different galaxies and how the spiral shape is the most common type. The children also learned about night and day. For this activity I had one child stand in the middle of the circle and pretend they were the sun. I then had another child pretend to be the earth. I explained to them that the Earth takes 365 days to orbit around the sun, but as it’s orbiting it is also rotating. The kids loved this activity!! During this time we talked about what stars are, the lunar eclipse, the different constellations, and about observatories. We then talked about Neil Armstrong and how if they went to the moon they would still see his footprint. Near the end of our outer space lesson the children learned about life in space, gravity, and astronauts. I showed a video of a launch and what it is like for astronauts up in space. The children loved it!!

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We then focused on the plant, butterfly, and frog life cycles. The children learned the parts of the flower, what plants need to grow, and the purpose of the stem. We also had fun placing celery stems into dyed water to show how plants drink through their veins. We also had fun learning about the different stages of the butterfly and what metamorphosis was all about. Lastly we learned out the different stages of the frog with amazing books and videos!

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Also, during this month we celebrated Grandparents Day in our classroom. The grandparents were able to come in and join us for a special line time, music class and then a craft. It was such a special day for the children.

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With the last two weeks remaining, the children had a blast learning about different insects. The children discovered that insects have six legs but spiders and other arachnids have 8 legs. The children were also able to learn the life cycle of the butterfly and find out why bees are so important to us. We also had fun discussing ladybugs and other beetles. During the last week of school the children learned about who invented ice cream, watched a video about how ice cream is made, learned all about camping. Also during the last week we had an ice cream party and a mock camp out with s’mores! Wow what a week we had!

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I can’t believe how fast the school year has gone by. I have truly enjoyed watching my kiddos grow throughout the year. I will miss them so very much. Also, thank you to all of my families, for everything that you have done this year. I wish the best of luck to those families who are going to new schools and look forward to seeing everyone else next school year! Have a great summer!!!

Academic Enrichment lesson with kindergarten students (Mr. John)

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!

Ms. Ame’s Corner  

Art: This month Michelle started off with her summer themed art. The students started by making their very own monster ice cream cones. The students designed their own scoops, cones and toppings making some very interesting desserts! The next week the students used oil pastels and water colors to draw a swimtastic picture. Michelle asked the students to draw a picture of a popular summertime activity, swimming! Because she started the year off with butterflies, Michele wanted to end the year with butterflies. Using their cutting skills the students folded a paper in half then cut out a butterfly. Michelle talked about symmetrical and asymmetrical things in the classroom. After cutting out the butterflies, the students then colored them using either warm or cool colors. Thank you Miss Michele for a wonderful and creative school year!

 

Music: Ms. Lisa spent the first two weeks in May preparing the students for different activities and songs to sing on Grandparents day. We continued to learn and review different notes. Ms. Lisa has some clever pictures to help the students. Then we also practiced clapping and tapping out different patterns using the different notes. Grandparents day was fantastic. We hope all the grandparents enjoyed Ms.Lisa’s class. On our final day of music, Ms. Lisa incorporated all the favorites from the year. This year the students learned so much about notes, rhythm, singing, musical terms, identifying noises (both instrumental and common sounds) and had a wonderful time playing Ms.Lisa’s musical games and instruments. Thank you so much Lisa for another wonderful year!

 

Science: Mr. John’s first experiment of the month was making gloop! Using glue, water and borax, Mr. John made a substance that turns from solid to liquid depending on the amount of pressure is being put against it. His second experiment was a popping sensation. Mr. John took 2 balloons, one filled with only air and the other with water and air. He then put the balloons over a candle flame. Check in with your student to see what happened to both balloons! At our last science class with Mr. John (insert dramatic crying sounds here), Mr. John did a tea bag experiment. Taking an empty tea bag and unwrapping it, what happens when you set it on fire? Mr. John rolled it into a cylinder, lit the top on fire and then it started to burn. When it was almost burnt all the way to the bottom the burning tea bag floated into the air like one of the lanterns in Tangled. Then as it floated up it extinguished itself. Why did it float? Ask your student or look at Mr.John’s paper with the experiment that was sent home in your child’s folder. Thank you Mr.John for another science filled year! The kids loved all the crazy experiments. Can’t wait to see what new one’s you’ll come up with next year!

 


Ms. Kate’s April 2016 Newsletter

Good day, mates! Spring is finally here! I love seeing the warm sunshine and the colorful flowers in bloom! This month has been super busy getting ready for the International Festival and learning about all of the different continents and countries. The children also enjoyed our guest speakers from different backgrounds and cultures.

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(taste testing Chinese food)

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During the first week, I introduced the seven continents to the children by showing them our continents puzzle. We discussed the four main countries in North America, including The United States of America, Mexico, Canada, and Greenland. The children also learned about our flag, which consists of 13 horizontal stripes, which are red, white, and blue and represent the first colonies and states in the union. The flag also has 50 stars, which represent the 50 states in the Union. The children also learned about Christopher Columbus, the climate, and cultures of North America. We also discussed South America and their famous Andes Mountains, The Amazon, and the Rainforest. The children really liked learning about the four layers, which are the forest floor, the understory, the canopy, and the emergent layer.

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The third week we focused on Asia. We discussed how Asia is the largest continent in the world. We mainly focused on China, Japan, and India. The first few days we learned about China. The children were able to see pictures of the largest Buddha, which is carved in the side of a cliff in china. It took workers about 100 years to carve! They also saw pictures of children at school, the beautiful mountains, their parades that they have when they celebrate new years. The children enjoyed learning about the Huang River, which is the third longest river in the world. It is also called the Yellow River because the yellow soil turns the river waters yellow. They also learned about their traditional clothing, families, and how most Chinese people live on farms and work in fields called Paddies. We also went over how they do not have an alphabet, but instead a symbol called a character. And lastly, we went over traditions, schooling, and how reading short stories or folktales are very popular. The second country we talked about was Japan. We discussed the weather and seasons, cultures and traditions, school and family, and also about country and city life in Japan. The children also learned about their food and how they have fun.

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We also focused on Russia, the Philippines, and Lebanon. We learned that in Lebanon’s mountains were thick with cedar trees, and the evergreens were highly valuable because they were used for ships and a place for worship. The cedar trees than became the national symbol. We also learned about the different kinds of plants and animals that can be found, how to say hello and goodbye, all about their daily life, and their schooling. It was very interesting to learn how pretty much everyone in these countries all lived in huts and apartments and that the whole family lived together under one roof. The children also had fun learning about all the different flags from each country and what they represented.

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(taste testing Chinese food)

Lastly, we learned about Australia, The Land Down Under. We had fun learning about their different traditions they celebrate, the animals that can be found, like the Emu, kokkaburra, koala, platypus, and the kangaroo. The children also learned about the Australian flag, the Great Barrier Reef, the beautiful different landscapes. And also about the Outback. We had so much fun this month learning about all of the different countries. The children also worked very hard practicing all of their lines and songs! I can’t wait for the International Festival!

Academic Enrichment with Mr. John
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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Who thinks adverbs are difficult…our kindergartners don’t!

The kindergarten class count to ten in 27 different languages. Some of them are 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, Turkish!

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Ms. Ame’s Corner 

Science
Mr. John started off the month with dancing spaghetti! Mr. John had water and vinegar
in a tall pitcher. Then he added cooked spaghetti. The students then created their own
hypothesis on what would happen when they added baking soda. The baking soda and
vinegar created carbon dioxide gas causing the spaghetti to “dance”.
The next week Mr. John did another creative experiement with packing peanuts. We use these when we
move to keep breakables safe. What happens when we throw them away and they get
wet at the junkyard? Check out the papers to see what happens and why!
Art
In Art Ms.Michelle started the month off with Australia aboriginal animal art. The
students talked about different Australian animals and traced them in pencil on their
paper. Then they used colors traditionally used by Aborigines and outlined and defined
their animals. These willbe displayed at the international festival!
The next week we made bugs out of recycled materials or trash. The students used trash for the body and
eyes and then pipe cleaners for the legs. The next week the students were able to paint their
creepy creatures. Please start taking home any art off our cart over the next few weeks
and check backpacks for art creations!
Music
Ms. Lisa brought ber piano in this month for students to practice. They learned that the
pattern of the black keys are 3 black and then 2 black. They also focused on listeing to
high and low sounds during their favorite game, Cat and Mouse. Students also got a turn
playing on the piano. Students currently taking piano lessons performed pieces they had
learned outside of school.
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One week, due to Festival rehearsals we had a group music lesson
with the whole class. We worked on rhythym using tbe rythym sticks and sang some of
Ms. Lisa’s clever interactive songs. Don’t forget about the CDs Ms. Lisa sent home
earlier in the year. These CDs have many of the songs we sing with her in class!

Ms. Kate’s May/June 2016 Monthly Overview

5/02: Plant and Butterfly Life Cycle

  • Exploring a plant and butterfly’s life cycle
  • Variety of activities that show a plants growth
  • Parts of a plant
  • Parts of a butterfly

Afternoon Group Lesson: Variety of fun books, activities and crafts having to do with plant and butterflies.

5/:09 Sea Life

  •  Warm water vs. cold water and types of fish in each environment
  •  Sea creatures, different types of Fish
  •  Coral Reef
  •  Sink and float science experiments

Afternoon Group Lesson: Variety of fun books, activities and crafts having to do with sea life.

 

5/16: Outer Space

  •  The planets in our Solar System
  •  Facts about each planet
  •  What is Gravity?

Afternoon Group Lesson:  Variety of fun books, activities and crafts having to do with outer space.

 

5/23: Outer Space

  •  Constellations, the Sun
  •  History of the space shuttle, Kennedy Space Center
  •  Astronauts, Neil Armstrong

Afternoon Group Lesson:  Variety of fun books, activities and crafts having to do with outer space.

 

5/30: All About Insects

  •  What makes an insect?
  •  How are insects different than spiders?
  •  All about bees and ladybugs!

Afternoon Group Lesson: Variety of fun books, activities and crafts having to do with insects.

 

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

5/04- 6/01: Review

 

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

5/02: Bee
5/16: bright
5/23: blue
5/30: sun

 

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

  •  While reading a book have your child point to all of the letter of the week she/he can find. Have them do this with the sight words as well. Play I‐Spy using things that only start with the letter of the week/ sight words.
  •  Make fish sugar cookies together! Read Rainbow Fish and create an underwater scene in your child’s bedroom (use blue saran wrap to cover the windows and create fish out of paper).
  •  Visit the aquarium in Cleveland. Create a story about all of the Fish and Mammals you saw!
  •  Make a telescope out of paper towel rolls, tape, markers and crayons. Talk about the constellations you see!

Ms. Kate’s March 2016 Newsletter

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

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The first week was all about Dr. Seuss. Throughout the week the children came to school dressed in crazy & mismatched socks and hats and Wacky Wednesday! The first few days we concentrated on rhyming activities; the first activity was a rhyming ball game. I placed different words onto a ball and the children had to throw the ball to one another. When a friend caught the ball they were able to pick out a word and identify another word that rhymes with it. The children loved this activity! During the second activity, I wrote out a number of sentences from The Cat In The Hat and placed note cards at the end of every other sentence. The children had to guess what word was under the note card that rhymed with the last word of the sentence. I was super impressed at how well they knew the rhyming word! Throughout that week we went down in the kitchen and cooked green eggs and ham and then had a taste test. We then graphed who liked what better. For the last activity we focused on four sight words, “I, and, the, & that.” Four students came up at a time. As I was reading The Cat In The Hat my four friends had to keep a tally on the sight words that we were looking for. At the end of the book we counted up the tally marks to see which sight words were used most in the story. At the end of the week the children made a Cat In The Hat hat to celebrate Dr. Seuss’s birthday. It was a very fun week!

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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 of themselves, 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!

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Then we had fun exploring the Rainforest. The children learned about the four layers of the rainforest which are The Forest Floor, The Understory Layer, The canopy Layer, and the Emergent Layer. The children learned about which animals and creatures lived in which layer. We also went over the insects and animals they would find and why they are becoming extinct. Throughout this lesson we also talked about things that we use that come from the rainforest such as wood for our furniture, fruits, coffee beans, and rubber to make rubber bands. For the preschool lesson, Ms. Ame did awesome rainforest art projects! We also had a very special leprechaun visit our room. The children had so much fun going on a shamrock hunt and finding all of his gold coins he left for them!

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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 environment 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!

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

Academic Enrichment | Kindergarten
In March we began our focused reading groups for our kindergarten students.  Kindergarten students are meeting with Ms. Kate on Monday and Wednesday mornings. Students read through a classic work of literature, discuss and have activities each week. These activities have included dramatizations, creative writing and art projects. It has been a wonderful program, our students are gaining so much!

Ms. Kristen begins our afternoon academic enrichment lesson with handwriting lessons and practice.  Students have been doing wonderfully!

We capped off our lessons in geometry by learning our geometric solids (Cube, sphere, cone, rectangular and triangular prisms, ovoid, ellipsoid, cylinder, square and triangular based pyramids.

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.

The Kindergartners now can count to 10 in twenty six languages…English (that is our native language), Spanish, Sign Language, German, French, Japanese, Greek, Arabic w/Lebanese dialect, Italian, Romanian, Russian, Hebrew, Swedish, Korean, Polish, Hungarian, and Tagalog, Polish, Irish, Kiswahili, Welsh, Dutch/Flemish, Serbo-Croatian, Cebuano, Malay, Hindi.

Ms. Ame’s Corner

In Music last month Ms. Lisa reviewed the story of Peter and the Wolf. The students continued to identify the names of the different instruments used and were able to identify which instrument sound was each character. They all enjoyed the story with the accompaniment of Ms. Michelle’s clever artwork to go along with it. One week she brought in her keyboard and the students identified the animals with their instrumental sound. They acted out each part along with the music. Ms. Lisa also demonstrated with her various instrumental sounds for the students to recognize. She also reviewed the Baby BumbleBee song, ask your student to sing it with you at home. Ms. Lisa brought her synthesizer piano another week and had the students listen and guess the different noises it could make. We also played one of the students favorite games, Cat and Mouse. This game has the students listening to different sounds to know when their animal can enter the house. The students also got a chance to play the white and black notes on the piano, what a treat!

In Science last month Mr. John had the students participate in some fun experiments that had the students using their scientific thinking skills. He started the month off with a groovy lava lamp experiment. Mixing water, food coloring and oil, Mr. John created a lava lamp! Then the students created a hypothesis about what would happen if they added an alka seltzer tablet. Ask your student what happened to the bottle. On St. Patrick’s Day Mr. John did an experiment exploring surface tension. The students came up with a hypothesis of what food coloring would do in milk,and what would happen when soap was added. Before Spring Break Mr. John did an experiment with corn startch and water. The students created a hypothesis about what would happen. The 2 mixed together created a substance that was liquid when there was no pressure,but when squeezed it turned into a solid! Check your child’s folder on Thursdays to see the directions to repeat the experience at home and to see you child’s hypothesis.

In Art last month Ms. Michelle taught the children about art from around the world. This month all of our art will be used at our International Festival. Please leave these wonderful creations on our art rack. Michelle started with India. The students colored an intricately designed elephant while taking turns having their hands cut out of clay. Using water colored with the spice turmeric, the students decorated their clay hand mimicking Hena designs. Ms. Michelle also took the kids on a trip to parts of North America and introduced them to Native American weaving. The students worked on creating their own weaving project with some help. The weaving was a little difficult for our tiny fingers, so it took a couple weeks to finish this project. Look in the hallways as Ms. Michelle will be displaying her weekly art projects along with a description.


Ms. Kate’s April 2016 Monthly Overview

What I will learn in class this month (in addition to Montessori Work Time…)

4/04: All About North America

  •   Introduction to the seven continents
  •   North America: countries, culture, climate
  •   United States, the flag and it’s history, Christopher Columbus
  •   South America: countries, climate, culture, landmarks, The Equator, The Andes Mountains
  •   The Amazon/What is found in the Rainforest (animals, products we use that come from the rainforest)

 Afternoon group lessons: Various fun crafts with Ms. Ame

4/11: Asia

  • China- Learning the different greeting, customs, and traditions. Having fun with different crafts from China, and learning about their flag
  • Japan-learning the different greetings, customs, and traditions. Learning about their flag and having fun with crafts from their country
  • India and Thailand. Learning the different, greetings, customs, and traditions. The children will have fun doing various crafts and dances from these countries.
  • Asia: countries, culture, climate, languages and cuisine. We will cover historical landmarks like the Great Wall of 
China, and locating natural landmarks like the Himalayan Mountains on a map.

Afternoon group lessons: Variety of activities and crafts about the different countries.

4/18: Asia

  •   Russia: Learning the different greetings, customs, and traditions. Having fun with crafts from their country
  •   Lebanan: Learning the different greetings, customs, and traditions.
  •   Turkey: Exploring Turkey through books and videos. Learning their different greetings, customs, and traditions.
  •   Philippines: Exploring this beautiful place through books. Learning about their different greetings, customs, and traditions.

 Afternoon group lessons: Having fun learning about the different states of the USA.

4/25: All About Australia

  •   New Zealand : Learning about their different greetings, customs, and traditions. Aslo learning about landmarks and climate, and cuisine.
  •   Tonga: Learning about their different greetings, customs, and traditions.
  •   Fiji : Learning about their different greetings, customs, and traditions.
  •   Somoe: Learning about their different greetings, customs, and traditions.

Afternoon group lessons: Flags of the world.

*For the month of April, we will be concentrating on preparing your child for the International Festival and will resume letters and rhyming words of the week in May.

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

  •   While reading a book have your child point to all of the letter of the week she/he can find. Have them do this with the sight words as well. Play I‐Spy using things that only start with the letter of the week/ sight words.
  •   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, please practice your line at home too!