Ms. Kristen’s October 2016 Monthly Overview

What I will learn this month in Ms. Kristen’s Class…

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

10/03: Down On The Farm

-Learning ASL farm animal signs
-Learning what animals live on a farm
-Life cycle of the chicken
-Making butter, learning about other foods made from milk.
-Sink or float experiment with eggs

10/10: Pumpkins

-Learning all about the parts of the pumpkin.
-Discuss what we can make with Pumpkins.
-Decorating a white pumpkin in class using crayon.
-Taste testing Pumpkin Pie.
-Learning the Poem “ Five Little Pumpkins”

10/17: Fall

-Discuss the characteristics of Fall.
-Shading over leaves to make prints.
-Leaf sorting.
-Poems and Songs about Fall and Leaves.
-Parts of the leaf.

10/24: All About Bats/Spiders/Halloween

-Learning the parts of the Bat
-Reading “Stellaluna”
-Learning about echolocation, and how it helps certain species of bats see
-Ven Diagram comparing bats to birds
-Learning the parts of the spider.
-Discussing how spiders are arachnids.
-Halloween games and songs.

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

10/03: Pp
10/10: Yy
10/17: Ss
10/24: Ii

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

10/03: Pig
10/10: Yes
10/17: Sit
10/24: It

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

-Take a fall hike together as a family. Have your child point out the changes they see around them.
-Ask your child to show you some of the ASL signs they’ve learned for farm animals.
-While reading to your child, point out the sight words they are learning this month.
-Pick out a pumpkin together with your child. Discuss with them what they have learned about how pumpkins grow, what foods we can make with pumpkin, etc.


Ms. Kristen’s August/September 2016 Monthly Overview

Ms. Kristen’s August/September 2016 Monthly Overview

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

 

8/22: Grace and Courtesy / Ground Rules

-Learning Control of Movement-Rolling A Rug, Carrying A Tray, and Carrying A Chair.

-Learning Grace And Courtesy- How to Introduce Yourself, How To Say Please And Thank You, How To Interrupt Another.

-Learning classroom rules.

-Discussing what it means to be kind to others and what are “kind words”.

-Making a “Kind Words Chain” in pre-school lesson.

 

8/29: Grace And Courtesy/Ground Rules

-Reading the book, “ The Bear That Was Chicken” and discussing with the children how they felt before coming to school and how they feel now about school.

-Lessons on saying “Excuse Me”, “I’m Sorry”, and “ Thank You”.

-Singing songs and playing game to review what we’ve learned about classroom rules and manners.

-Having the children write our classroom rules and display them in the classroom.

-Read the book “ There’s A Bird On Your Head”. Discuss how to speak to someone when we’re frustrated.

 

9/5: All About Me

“ Who’s Baby Picture Is This?” guessing game. (Be sure to send in a baby picture of your child with them this week.)
Discussing what makes each of us special: hair color, eye color, likes and dislikes, our birthdays, our names, our emotions, etc.

-Graphing our differences such as hair and eye color.

-Practicing saying our full names.

-Learning our birth dates.

 

9/12: All About Community Helpers

-All About Firefighters and Police Officers

-All About Doctors and Nurses

-All About Construction Workers

-All About Transportation Workers

 

What is a Community Helper?
-9/19 All About Apples

-Read the story “Little Bear’s Star”- Story about an apple.

-Sorting apples by size and color.

-Learning the fractions of one whole and one half using an apple.

-Taste testing different color apples and making a graph, as a class, of our favorites.

-Learning about the Life Cycle of the Apple /Apple Tree.

 

9/26 Friendship/ International Week Of The Deaf

-What are the qualities of a good friend?

-How do we share?

-Accepting each other.

-Learning about Deaf Culture and some words in ASL

-Making Friendship Bracelets together

-Learning a song in ASL

 

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

8/22: Aa
8/29: Cc
9/5: Rr
9/12: Tt
9/19: ee ( As in feet, meet, and bee.)
9/26: oo (As in boot, hoot, and loot.)

 

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

8/22: at
8/29: cat
9/5: rat
9/12: tap
9/19: bee
9/26: boot

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.

-Discuss with your child what they learned about Community Helpers. How can your family help our community.

-While reading to your child, point out the sight words they are learning this month.

-Find a fun apple recipe to try as a family. Let your child practicing measuring the ingredients, assemble the ingredients, etc. Discuss with your child the other things that can be made with apples.


Ms. Kristen’s May/June 2016 Newsletter

The months of May and June were very exciting in our classroom! We learned all about Insects, Dinosaurs, Reptiles and Amphibians, Mammals, and Summer Safety. We also had a very exciting field trip to the Akron Zoo to experience up close the different types of animals we had learned about!

During the first week, we discussed all about Insects. We learned that insects have six legs. We also learned that all insects have a head, thorax, and abdomen. We also learned about the process that caterpillars go through in order to become a butterfly, called metamorphosis. The children also enjoyed making their own time line of the process of metamorphosis as well during work time!

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The following week we learned all about Dinosaurs. The children learned that there were some dinosaurs that ate meat (carnivores), some dinosaurs who ate plants (herbivores), and some dinosaurs who ate both plants and meat (omnivores). We learned also learned that Dinosaurs were reptiles. The children also learned all about Tyrannosaurus Rex and that his name means “ Tyrant Lizard King”. We also learned that a scientist who studies dinosaurs is a Paleontoligist.

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We learned all about Reptiles and Amphibians during week three. We learned that Reptiles are cold blooded and most live on the land ( the alligator and crocodile being the exception). We learned that Amphibians can live both on the land and in the water. The children enjoyed learned about the parts of the turtle and learning about the life cycle of the frog as well. The children learned that frogs start off as an egg, then they grow into a tadpole after they hatch. The tadpole then grows into a froglet and then the frog becomes an adult.

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Mammals were the topic of discussion during week four. The children learned mammals are warm blooded, give birth to their babies, usually have hair or fur on their bodies, and they drink milk from their mother’s bodies. The children also enjoyed learning about one particular mammal, the Rhino.

The last week of school was all about Summer Fun and Safety. We learned all about how to be safe around a campfire, and Ms. Kim brought in S’mores as a special treat! We also learned that we should wear our helmets when riding our bikes or skate boards, when it is OK to call 911, that we should not talk to strangers, and what is safe to touch in our house and what is not.

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!

Enrichments (Ms. Kim)

Music

In music this month, the children sang hello to Nemo the fish, Alley the alligator, Jerry the giraffe, and Bernie the Bernard! Next Ms. Lisa reviewed the note family. (whole, half, quarter, and eighth notes) We used rhythm sticks to tap the beats of the notes. The children loved tapping the notes to the songs of “Hot Cross Buns”, “Yankee Doodle”, and “Great Big Stars”. We also used the rhythm sticks to pretend to play musical instruments such as the violin, flute, and tuba. In addition to pretending to play different instruments, Ms. Lisa likes the children to guess the sounds of instruments. She was impressed by how well the children recognized and named the musical instruments. Lastly we practiced listening for low and high sounds by playing the cat and mouse game. If you were a cat, you came out on the low sounds. If you were a mouse, you came out on the high sounds. Thanks Ms. Lisa for great music lessons!

Science

For our first experiment, Mr. John mixed glue, Borax detergent, and water in a bowl. The children made hypotheses beforehand on what would happen when all the materials were mixed together. Many of the children said that the mixture would turn into a goop. They were right! The polymers in the water and glue stuck to the Borax when it was added.

Our second experiment involved a balloon filled with water, a balloon with no water, and a lighted candle. The children made hypotheses on what would happen to each balloon when it was put over the flame of the candle. Well we were surprised when only the balloon without water popped. The balloon with water didn’t pop because the water inside absorbed the heat.

Our last experiment involved tea bags and a lighter. Mr. John put an open tea bag on a plate. (the tea was dumped out) When he lit the tea bag, it burnt down got hotter and floated into the air. Hot air rises!

Art

For the month of May, Ms. Michele had the children create some summer themed art projects. First the children got to be super creative and design their own “Monster Ice Cream Cones”. They used markers, glue, and scissors to cut out different shapes out of construction paper. Our next art lesson had to do with oil pastels and water. The children first drew themselves with pencil as something you would find in the ocean. Next they colored in their drawings with oil pastels. Last they painted over the whole paper with water. By painting with the water, it showed how the oil and water do not mix. In our last art lesson, the children made symmetrical butterflies. They drew and traced shapes on both wings so that the wings matched. Then they chose to color in their butterflies with primary, complimentary, warm, or cool colors.

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Finally…

This summer, I encourage to you discuss with your child the safety rules of your home and rules for also being safe in your neighborhood. Discuss with your child what their favorite animal was that they saw at the zoo. Take a trip to the Natural History Museum in Cleveland and see the Tyrannosaurus Rex skeleton up close.

In conclusion, I want to thank you and your children for making this such a wonderful school year. Your children inspire me every day and have shown me so much unconditional love. It’s because of them that I love getting up and going to work every day! Thank you for the precious gift of your children! Have a safe and wonderful Summer!

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Ms. Kristen’s April 2016 Newsletter

The month of April was filled with lots of international fun! The children enjoyed learning about the seven continents, learning about North and South America in greater detail, and the children even enjoyed learning some words and songs in Spainish. During the month of April, the Map Puzzle work was very popular. Learning about the different continents and countries really peaked the children’s interest in learning about the world around them!

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During the first week of April, we first delved into learning the names of all Seven Conitnents. We taught the children the Montessori Contenent Song. Ms. Kim also brought in continent books for the children to make and take home. We also reviewed our “ Cosmic Address”, and went over the names of our planet, continent, country, state, city, and school. It really helped set the tone for all we were going to learn about North and South America.

 

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We learned all about the counries in North America durring week two. We learned that in Canada, they speak English, just as we do here in America. We learned that in Mexico, they speak Spanish. Through practicing using the Map of North America Puzzle, the children soon learned that Canada is to the north of the United States and that Mexico is south of the United States.

 

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During the third week, we learned more about Mexico. The children also enjoyed making a Mexican Sombrero with Ms. Kim. We also learned how to do the Mexican Hat Dance! The children also enjoyed learning the names of the parts of the body in Spanish and the names of family members in Spanish. We also learned that “ Hola” means “Hello” and “ Adios” means “ Goodbye” in Spanish as well.

 

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During week three, we also learned about the countries of South America and about the Amazon Rainforest. We learned that the Amazon Rainforest is home to many animals such as Capybara, the Blue Morpho Butterfly, and the Poison Dart Frog. The children also enjoyed making a Blue Morpho Butterfly craft and eating a “ Rainforest Parfait” with Ms. Kim. The parfait was just like the Rainforest in that it had for layers. We learned that the layers of the Rainforest are the Emergent Layer, the Canopy Layer, the Understory Layer, and the Forest Floor.

 

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During week four, we enjoyed hearing from visitors about Turkey, Tanzania, and Nigeria. We also enjoyed learning about Brazil and Argentina. We learned that in Brazil, soccer is very popular and that the summer Olympic will be hosted their this summer and that people in Brazil speak Portugese. We also learned that in Argentina, their president lives in a pink house and that on a street called the Cominito in Buenos Aires all of the houses are painted with bright colors. We also learned that the current pope, Pope Francis, is from Argentina!

 

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Academic Enrichment with Mr. John
In the afternoon lesson with kindergarten students 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 said adverbs were difficult? Our kindergartners don’t think so!

My line time and 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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Enrichments ( Ms. Kim):

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.
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Science
Our first science experiment involved putting spaghetti noodles in a jar of water and vinegar. Mr. John asked the children what would happen when baking soda was added to the jar. The children stated that the noodles would float, sink, or bubble. When Mr. John put the baking soda in, the noodles did nothing, but the water mixture did overflow! Mr. John explained that the carbon dioxide bubbles created by the vinegar and baking soda should have carried the noodles to the top. Then once the bubbles popped, the noodles would sink to the bottom. Sometimes experiments don’t work!
The next experiment involved a tank of water and packing peanuts. Mr. John asked the children what would happen when we put packing peanuts in the tank of water. The hypotheses were float, sink, and explode! The packing peanuts ended up dissolving and breaking apart.  Mr. John bought biodegradable packing peanuts that are better for the environment.
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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Some things you can do with your child in the coming months to reinforce our themes would be going to the zoo and seeing how many animals your family can find that are from South America. Try making a Mexican dish together as a family. Pull up a world map and review the names of the Continents together. Discuss with your child their favorite country either from North America or South America.

 

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Maria Montessori stated that, It is true that we cannot make a genius. We can only give to teach child the chance to fulfil his potential possibilities.” Remember, every child is unique and develops different skills and abilities at their own pace. I love all off the individual personalities and abilities that make up our amazing and unique classroom, and I considerate a joy and a privilege to be their teacher!

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Ms. Kristen’s May/June 2016 Monthly Overview

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

5/2: All About Insects

  • Learning the characteristics of Insects.

  • Life Cycle of the Butterfly.

  • How Insects are helpful/harmful.

  • Where do certain insects live?

  • Where do insects get their food?

5/9: Dinosaurs

  • Studying Dinosaurs that lived on land, earth, and in the air.

  • Learning about the difference between carnivores and herbivores.

  • Discuss how Dinosaurs left fossils, which give us “clues” about them.

  • Discuss different types of dinosaurs such as T-Rex, Stegosaurus, and Triceratops.

  • Discuss how dinosaurs all hatched from eggs.

5/16: All About Reptiles and Amphibians

  • The difference between reptiles and amphibians.

  • Learning about the Frog Life Cycle

  • Learning about snakes, lizards, and alligators.

  • Learning about turtles and frogs.

  • Making a ven diagram of the differences between reptiles and amphibians.

5/23: All About Mammals

  • Learning the physical characteristics of mammals.
  • Learning about bears, monkeys, and lions.

  • What do certain mammals eat?
  • Where do certain mammals live?

5/30: All About Summer Fun/Safety

  • Learning all about camping.

  • Making ice cream.

  • Learning about “stranger danger”.

  • Learning when to call 9-1-1.

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

5/2: Yy

5/9: Ss

5/16: Ii

5/23: Pp

5/30: Jj

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

5/2: Yet

5/9: Set

5/16: Lip

5/23: Pit

5/30: Jet

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

  • Discuss with your child their favorite types of dinosaur they are learning about.

  • Take a trip to the zoo with your child. Discuss the different types of animals you see.

  • Play “ I Spy” with your child using the letter sounds of the letter of the week.

  • Discuss summer saftey rules for your family with your child, such as where is safe to play in your neighborhood, what to do if approached by a stranger, etc.


Ms. Kristen’s March 2016 Newsletter

The month of March has been very busy in our classroom. We learned about Dr. Seuss, Space, and all about our state of Ohio. The children also enjoyed celebrating St. Patrick’s Day and wearing green and celebrating having the most Box Tops with Silly Sock Day and a Pizza Party! We also had a blast on Pajama and Show and Tell Day!

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During the first week, we had fun learning all about Dr. Seuss. The children enjoyed reading “ The Cat In The Hat”, “ Horton Hatches The Egg” , and “ The Alphabet Book”. The Cat In The Hat even came for a visit to our classroom! He showed us how to make Cat masks and read to us from his book! The children also learned that Dr. Seuss’ real name was Theodore Seuss Giesel. We also learned that Dr. Seuss lived near a Zoo as a child, which is where he began to think of all of his imaginary creatures in his stories!

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During week two and three, we enjoyed learning all about Outer Space. The children enjoyed learning all the names of the planets in our solar system, learning all about the phases of the moon, and all about constellations. The children also enjoyed watching footage of the first moon landing and they also enjoyed making their own constellations using stickers with Ms. Kim!

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We learned all about Ohio during week four! The children learned our state bird, the Cardinal. We learned that the male cardinals have bright red feathers, while the female Cardinals have more brown, dull feathers in order to camouflage themselves and to protect their nest. We also learned that our state capitol is Columbus, and that our state tree is the buckeye tree. We also talked about how our state is a small piece of our country and our city is a small piece of our state.

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For St. Patrick’s Day, the children also enjoyed making a shamrock craft with Ms. Kim and reading a story about how St. Patrick’s Day became a holiday. The children really enjoyed decorating their shamrock with Lucky Charms! Also, when the children arrived at school that day, we discovered that a tricky leprechaun had made a mess in our classroom!

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During the last week of school, the children had a lot of fun hunting for Easter Eggs outside! Ms. Kim placed Easter eggs all around the playground, and the children enjoyed trying to find them. And let me tell you, those eggs were packed full of candy!

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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.

 

Enrichments (Ms. Kim)

Music
In music this month the children sang hello to Tina the Turtle, Freida the Frog, Jerry the Giraffe, and Bernie the Bernard! We finished up the story, Peter and the Wolf, by listening to the sounds of the instruments on Ms. Lisa’s keyboard. When Ms. Lisa played the sound of an instrument on her keyboard, the children guessed what character from the story it was. We also acted out the characters for fun! The children spent a lot of time this month learning about the sounds and keys of the keyboard. Ms. Lisa showed the children where the high and low sounds on the keyboard are located. We then learned the difference between smooth and jumpy sounds. Next the children noticed that the keys on the keyboard are black and white, and then got to play them!

Science
For our first experiment, Mr. John poured colored water into a liter bottle. Then he added vegetable oil. The vegetable oil stayed on top because oil and water do not mix. Next he asked the children what would happen when he added Alka-Seltzer tablets. Would it bubble a lot or a little? Well we saw it bubble a lot because the Alka-Seltzer tablets created carbon dioxide bubbles when they hit the water. These bubbles floated to the top where the oil was, but then went back down because again the water and oil do not mix. It almost looked like a lava lamp!

For our next experiment each child received a bowl of milk. Then Mr. John went around and added different colors of food coloring to the milk. The children were told not to mix the colors. Next each child received a cotton swab that had been dipped in dish soap. When we were ready, the children carefully dipped the cotton swab into the colored milk. We saw the colored milk quickly move away from the cotton swab and create a rainbow. The milk moved away quickly because the dish soap broke the surface tension.

Art
In art we continued to create projects for our upcoming International Festival. At the beginning of the month we made hands out of clay that we painted henna designs on. Ms. Michele and I helped the children cut their hands out of clay. When the clay hardened they painted with a special paint to make a henna design on them. We learned that in India henna designs are popular.

For the rest of the month, the children worked on a yarn weaving project. We learned that Navajo Indians are excellent rug weavers. The Navajo use wool from sheep for their weavings. The children were given a small cardboard loom with string and yarn to weave. Ms. Michele reminded the children to weave over and under or under and over! It is amazing to see the focus and concentration our young students have for this project!

 

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

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

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Ms. Kristen’s April 2016 Monthly Overview

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

 

4/4: Introduction To The Continents

-The location of the continents on the globe.
-Using the Continent Map Puzzle to locate the continents.
-Major countries of each continent.
-Landmarks, indigenous animals, and weather of each continent.
-Learning the Montessori Continent Song.

4/11: All About North America

-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of the United States
-Making a rain stick craft.
-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Canada
-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Haiti.
-Learning all about Costa Rica and making a Blue Morpho Butterfly craft.

4/18: North America (Cont.)/ All About South America

-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Jamaica.
-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Panama.
-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Brazil.
-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Argentina.
-Making a rainforest craft and a La Boca House collage.

4/25: All About South America ( Cont.)

-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Peru.
-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Chile.
-Learning all about the culture, traditions, and people of Equador

International Festival practice!

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

4/4: Aa
4/11: Cc
4/18: Rr
4/25: Tt

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

4/4: and
4/11: can
4/18: rag
4/25: the

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

Try making a new recipe as a family from a country we’ve discussed in South America.

Discuss with your child their favorite animal that they learned about in the Amazon Rainforest.

Practice identifying the continents on a map of the world with your child.

Practice with your child the name of our planet, continent, country, state, city, and their address.


Ms. Kristen’s February 2016 Newsletter

The month of February was very busy in our classroom! We learned about types of transportation, all about arctic animals, our Presidents (past and present), and all about dental health! We also had fun celebrating Valentine’s Day! Thank you to all our parent volunteers and helpers, and especially Ms. Kim for making our party such a success!

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During the first week of February, we discussed trains, boats, buses, and trucks and other forms of transportation. The children especially enjoyed the “ Sink or Float” experiment in afternoon group time. We also discussed which forms of transportation go in land, air, and water. We also discovered that the children are very interested in boats, and had many questions about them! We discovered there many way to get from one place to another!

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We learned about many different types of arctic animals during the second week of February. The children learned how many arctic animals have a layer of blubber underneath their skin and how is keeps them warm at night. They also learned the male Emperor Penguins take care of their eggs while the female Emperor Penguins go and search for food. The children also enjoyed learning about Arctic Wolves, Polar Bears, and Beluga Whales. The children especially enjoyed making a Penguin craft with Ms. Kim during afternoon group lesson.

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During week three, we learned all about Presidents. We discussed the president’s job is to be the leader of our country. We also learned about the sixteenth President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln. We also talked about George Washington and how he was the first President of the United States. We also learned that George Washington’s picture is on the quarter and the dollar bill.  Abraham Lincoln’s picture is on the five dollar bill and the penny. Some of the children also took it upon themselves to write the names of the presidents in order during work time. 

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We learned all about dental health during the final week of February. When we are young, we only have twenty teeth! Later, when we become adults, we have twenty-eight-thirty two teeth! We also learned the proper way to brush our teeth and what foods are healthy for our teeth. The children also enjoyed making a craft with Ms. Kim during Preschool lesson where they made a mouth with construction paper and marshmallows for teeth! The children also enjoyed a visit from a dental hygenist, who taught us how to brush our teeth and why we don’t need to be scared when we go to the dentist.

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Academic Enrichment Afternoon Lesson with Mr. John
We started out the month introducing addition using beads.  The introduction of beads shows the kindergartners a solid correspondence between the symbol and quantity. I also showed the students what tools could be used in their own classroom to help with addition, such as the table top rods, color bead bars and addition strip board.  We briefly touched upon addition with exchanges (carry over’s).  We then touched briefly on multiplication.  I explained multiplication is simply adding multiple times.  Introduced fractions the last week of the month. We learned that we can divide anything as long as it can be divided into equal parts.  Even our kindergarten class.  We divided our class from girls/boys.  Mr. John’s, Ms. Kate’s, and Ms. Kristen’s class, and eye color.

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                    Multiplication Equation

We then learned about different shapes.  We knew that a triangle has three sides but we learned that a triangle with three equal sides is called an equilateral triangle, with two equal sides is an isosceles, and with no equal sides it is called a scalene triangle. Any shape with four sides is a quadrilateral.  Some examples include a square, rectangle, rhombus, trapezoid, and a chevron.  We realized that the Greek language was very important when learning about the pentagon, hexagon, heptagon, octagon, nonagon, and decagon.

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, Hebrew, Korean, Hungarian, Polish, Irish, Kiswahili, Welsh, Dutch/Flemish, Serbo-Croatian, Cebuano.

 

Ms. Kim’s Corner:

In music class this month the children sang hello to Alley the Alligator and Frieda the Frog. We reviewed the musical words for loud, soft, slow, and fast! To review the story, Peter and the Wolf, we acted out the characters in the story. Once the children heard the musical instrument, they acted like the bird, duck, cat, wolf, Grandpa, or Peter! We remembered this story very well. Next, we reviewed the whole, half, quarter, and eighth notes. The children clapped the beats of the notes first. Then Ms. Lisa had the children use rhythm sticks to practice these notes in songs like “Grandfather Clocks” and “Yankee Doodle.”

 

Our first science experiment this month required a can of Coca-Cola and a can of Diet Coke. The children made hypotheses on what would happen to each can of soda when dropped into a tank of water. Would they sink or float? We discovered that the regular can of Coca-Cola sank and the Diet Coke floated. Mr. John explained that the regular can of soda has real sugar which is denser, so it sinks.

Our next experiment involved Bran Flakes cereal and magnets! Mr. John mixed the Bran Flakes cereal and the water into a plastic Ziploc bag. He explained to the children that the cereal contained the metal iron. The children made hypotheses on what would happen when a magnet was rubbed over the cereal. We saw black spots when the magnet was rubbed over the cereal. These black spots were the iron. So yes we eat metal!

Our last experiment of the month was called, “Dancing Raisins”. Mr. John asked the children what they thought would happen when raisins were dropped into a glass of ginger ale. Most of the children said that the raisins would either sink or float. Well we were surprised when the raisins sank but then floated back to the top! In ginger ale, there are carbon dioxide bubbles. These bubbles grabbed onto the raisins and carried them to the bottom, but once the bubbles popped the raisins floated back to the top.

 

At the beginning of the month, Ms. Michele read the students the book, The Snowy Day. Then they created a snowy day picture by first gluing down cotton balls as snow. Next they drew themselves playing in the snow. As a final touch, Ms. Michele let the students sprinkle on a little glitter on their snowy pictures.

Next the students created art that would get them thinking about the International Festival. Ms. Michele had the students watch a video on the Chinese New Year. In this video there was dragons and lions dancing to celebrate the new year. Ms. Michele had the students create a lion or dragon by decorating two already glued paper cups. They got to be creative and put feathers, construction paper, pipe cleaners, crayons, markers, and eyes on these creations!

 

Lastly, please take time to practice with your child what they are learning here at school. Ask your child about their favorite President of the United States. Take a trip to the Zoo to visit some of the artic animal, such as the Polar Bears and Penguins, and discuss which one is their favorite and why. Practice good dental hygene with your child by practicing brushing their teeth correctly with them. Take a trip on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad together as a family.

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Maria Montessori stated , “If education is always to be conceived along the same antiquated lines of a mere transmission of knowledge, there is little to be hoped from it in the bettering of man’s future. For what is the use of transmitting knowledge if the individual’s total development lags behind?” I am so proud to be part of a school where we teach not only letter sounds and and numbers, but a sense of order, concentration, coordination, and independence. These qualities are the most important skills a child can learn at an early age, and I love watching your children grow closer to mastering these every day! I am so proud of all of our students hard work this past month and I consider it a privilege to be their teacher!

 

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Ms. Kristen’s March 2016 Monthly Overview

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

2/29: All About Dr. Seuss

-Discuss Dr. Seuss and his life.
-What makes a rhyme?
-Cat In The Hat Craft
-Read “ Oh The Places You’ll Go”.-Discussing where we would like to travel, if we could travel anywhere in the world.
-Read Green Eggs and Ham.

3/7: All About Outer Space

-Learning all about the Moon.
-What is a Star?
-Dicovering the planets in our solar system.
-Learning all about Astronauts and their job.
-Learning all about the constellations.

3/14: Continue Learning About Space

-Learing about the Space Shuttle.
-Watching the Moon Landing.
-Who was the first person in Outer Space?
-What is a Dwarf Planet?
-Testing a real telescope.

3/21: All About Ohio

-What makes a state?
-Famous sites in N.E. Ohio.
-Learning about our state flag.
-Learning about our state bird, insect, and flower.
-Graphing how many of us live in Akron, Stow, Cuyahoga Falls, etc.

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

2/29: Qq
3/7: Bb
3/14: Ww
3/21: Zz

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

2/29: Quick
3/7: Bud
3/14: Was
3/21: Zip

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

  • Read a Dr. Seuss story with your child. Point out the rhyming words. Writing your own story with rhyming words together!
  • Visit the Planatarium at the Natural History Museum in Cleveland.
  • Practice your address with your child. This is very important for them to start learning early!
  • Discuss with your child which planet they would like to visit and why.

Ms. Kristen’s January 2016 Newsletter

January was so much fun! The children were so happy to come back after Christmas Break and begin working in the classroom! I know Ms. Kim and I missed them as well!

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During the first week of January, we reviewed our classroom rules. We were reminded of how to carry a tray, how to walk on the line, how to roll up our rugs, etc. This was a great reminder coming back from a two week break, and a great introduction to our classroom for our new friends. Our returning friends were a great help to our new friends when it came to teaching them the rules of the classroom.

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During the following week, we learned about Peacemakers. You might have heard your child talking about what it means to be a Peacemaker at home. We learned that a Peacemaker is someone who is kind, who helps others, who does not hurt others, who uses kind words, and does not argue with others. We talked about great Peacemakers, such as Maria Montessori, Martin Luther King Jr., Mother Teresa, and Mahatma Ghandi.

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During week three, we learned all about Nutrition and Healthy Eating. We learned about the Food Pyramid and what foods are “Grow Foods” and what foods are “Junk Foods”. Ms. Kim also read “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” by Eric Carl to the children. They also enjoyed making their own model of the “ My Plate” food pyramid.

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We also learned all about the Five Senses, during the last week of the month. The children enjoyed learning about the parts of the ear and how we are able to hear. They also learned about our sense of sight as well. To illustrate how important our sense of sight is, Ms. Kim placed many different objects in the middle of our circle during preschool lesson and each child took turns guessing which object Ms. Kim removed from the middle of the circle. What a great way to practice our observation skills! We also popped popcorn in an air popper. We learned that when making and eating popcorn, we can use all five of our senses. The children enjoyed describing what they heard, saw, smelled, tasted, and felt while making and eating the popcorn!

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Academic Enrichment with Mr. John (Kindergarten Students):

This month we started our section in Math.  We explored about the unit (ones), ten, hundred, and thousand columns.  The kindergarteners composed numbers, and were introduced to addition with and without carry overs (static).  Kindergarten students across all the classrooms in our Academic Enrichment lesson can count to 10 in twenty different languages (English, Sign Language, German, French, Greek, Japanese, Arabic w/Lebanese dialect, Italian, Russian, Romanian, Swedish, Tagolog, Hebrew, Korean, Hungarian, Polish, Irish, Kiswahili, and Welsh Dutch/Flemish, Serbo-Croatian, and Cebuano).

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Enrichments (Ms. Kim):

Music
This month the students sang hello to Allie the Alligator, Tina the Turtle, and Ellie the Parrot. Ms. Lisa spent time teaching the story Peter and the Wolf. Each character in the story is represented by a musical instrument from the orchestra. As soon as a musical instrument was played, the students could state whether it was the bird, duck, wolf, etc. We also did a tambourine dance and moved our bodies to the motions in the song! Lastly, we listened to Beethoven’s Rage Over a Lost Penny. After listening to the music, we searched the room for objects Ms. Lisa had hid.

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Science
In science this month we did experiments that involved sinking, floating, and surface tension. During our first experiment, Mr. John had the students drop one peeled orange and one unpeeled orange into a tank of water. We discovered that the peeled orange sank to the bottom because the air bubbles are allowed to escape. The air bubbles in the unpeeled orange keep the orange afloat. Our experiment with surface tension had two glasses of water. One glass also had dish soap. The children made hypotheses on what a piece of paper would do in each. We discovered that the paper in the dish soap sank to the bottom because the surface tension was weaker. The dish soap weakened the hydrogen bonds in the water.
Art
Ms. Michele spent this month having the children make their imaginary creatures. This project is broken up into steps. The first week the children drew what their imaginary creature would look like. The second week they molded their imaginary creature with clay. The third week they painted the clay. Ms. Michele baked the clay in the oven before the children painted. What a project!
Finally, I hope you will take time to explore what we’ve learned with your child at home as well! When cooking, playing, eating, or taking a walk outside, discuss with your child which of their five senses they are using. Review with them what it means to be a Peacemaker, and ask them how they can be a Peacemaker at home. Take time to find a healthy recipe to make together as a family.
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In conclusion, I want to thank you for letting me serve your children. Maria Montessori believed that we, as directresses, are mainly observers and servants of the child. She believed this so much, that she credited the children she worked with when she said, “It is not true that I invented what is called the Montessori Method. I have studied the child, I have taken what the child has given me and expressed it, and that is what is called the Montessori Method.” I consider myself blessed to be a observer, student, and servant of your child, and it is a true joy!