2014-2015 May-June 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!

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During the first week, we discussed all about Insects. We learned 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.

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The following week we learned all about Dinosaurs. The children learned 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 also learned Dinosaurs were reptiles. The children also learned all about Tyrannosaurus Rex and that his name means “ Tyrant Lizard King”. We also learned about Stegosaurus and enjoyed making a Stegosaurus craft with Ms. Kim during afternoon group lesson.

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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 that 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 enjoyed making a lemur craft and a mammal booklet with Ms. Kim during pre-school lesson as well. We also learned that we are mammals too!

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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 we should wear our helmets when riding our bikes or skate boards, when it is alright to call 911, we should not talk to strangers, and what is safe to touch in our house and what is not.

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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.

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Enrichments (Ms. Kim)

Music

For our last month in music class, Ms. Lisa reviewed many skills we have been working on throughout the year. To review loud (forte) and soft (piano), the children played tambourines and bells during different parts of a song. We then danced with scarves to some smooth (legato) music and then popped some bubbles to jumpy (staccato) music! To practice using our listening ears, Ms. Lisa had us play a pass and roll ball game. We had to work together to keep the balls moving in circle, but had to listen carefully and stop when the music stopped! We also worked on learning whole, half, quarter, and eighth notes. Ms. Lisa had the children play rhythm sticks to “Great Big Stars” to keep the beat with the quarter notes. Another musical instrument we worked with was Ms. Lisa’s keyboard (piano). She explained to the children that the keys on the left side of the keyboard make low sounds, while the keys on the right side make high sounds. Lastly, we played the cat and mouse game to review high and low sounds. The children loved when the low sounds were played on the keyboard and the cats came out to catch the mice! Thanks Ms. Lisa for such a fun music class!

Science

In science this month we learned that we eat metal! Mr. John mixed together bran flakes cereal and water in a bag. When he rubbed a magnet over the cereal, black spots appeared. These black spots are iron. So since iron is a metal, we eat metal in cereal!

In our next experiment, we made green goo! Mr. John mixed together water, green food coloring, and Metamucil powder. The children made hypotheses on what would happen if you put the mixture in the microwave. Many of the children said that the mixture would turn to goo. Mr. John explained that once the mixture cooled down it would turn to goo because the polymers in the powder stick together.

During our last experiment we made a tea bag fly up into the air. Mr. John asked the children what they thought would happen when he lit an empty tea bag on fire. Some children said that the tea bag would melt. When he lit the tea bag, the bag burnt down a little and then flew up into the air. Why? When the tea bag began to burn it got lighter. The air around the tea bag got hot and made the paper rise.

Art

In our first art class, we studied the artist Vincent Van Gogh. We looked at the painting he did of a bedroom. Then the students created their own bedrooms out of cardstock and other art media. In their bedrooms, the children had to create two patterns.

In our second art lesson, the children got to use their imaginations and creativity to create shape animals by gluing strips of paper into different shapes and then gluing these shapes together. Ms. Michele demonstrated to the children how to glue strips of paper into circles, hearts, ovals, etc. When the children were done, they had created 3-dimensional art since the animals were not flat.

In our third art lesson, the children got to observe and paint flowers. Ms. Michele brought in pots of flowers and set them on the tables. She showed the children how she observed and then painted what she saw. She demonstrated how to paint stems, leaves, and then flowers. The children’s paintings had lots of color!

In our last lesson, Ms. Michele reviewed the color wheel. She asked the children what primary, secondary, and complimentary colors were. Then she showed the children that they would be working with pipe cleaners to create an animal. Ms. Michele twisted and bent pipe cleaners to show the children how to make bodies, eyes, and other parts of animals. Making these animals was a good way to get the students thinking about the animals at the zoo!

 

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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! I can’t wait for what the next school year has in store for us!


April 2015 Newsletter

The month of April was very busy in our classroom! The children continued to delve into experiencing other cultures and customs, worked very hard on their lines and songs for the International Festival, and we also even learned about the Ocean.

During the first week of April, we learned about the continents of South America and Africa. We first learned that the continent of South America contains the Amazon Rain Forest as well as the Amazon River. The children also learned about the African Savanah and the many animals that reside there, such as lions, impalas, and African Elephants. The children also enjoyed making African necklaces with Ms. Kim during Preschool!

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We studied the continents of Europe and Asia during the second week of April. The children enjoyed learning about France and tasting croissants during Preschool Lesson. They also enjoyed learning about Ireland’s green countryside and many castles. We then traveled to Asia where we dove into Japanese music and how songs in Japan were originally composed using only five notes! I even brought in my xylophone to demonstrate for the children the difference between Japanese music, and the style of music we are used to hearing as Americans. We also learned that Japan was formed over time due to the eruption of several volcanoes. We also enjoyed making our own volcano in class!

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During week three, we traveled to Australia. We learned about Aboriginal Art and discussed the many animals found in Australia, such as kangaroos, wallabies, and wambats. We even had a special speaker come and visit us to tell us all about her trip to ” The Land Down Under”.

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The final week, the children enjoyed learning all about the Oceans. We learned the names of all the oceans, which are Atlantic, Pacific, Indian, and Arctic. I think this was a favorite unit, as the children were excited on the first day to name as many animals as they could that live in the ocean. We learned that not only fish live in the ocean, but mammals such as Orca Whales and Dolphins live in the ocean as well and breathe oxygen from the air, just as we do! The children also enjoyed making a crab craft during preschool lesson with Ms. Kim.

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Enrichments (Ms. Kim)

Music

We were happy to see Ms. Lisa back from her trip! She had traveled to El Salvador on a missions trip. She shared with us pictures of the land and the children she worked with. Then Ms. Lisa played us a song that she had used in El Salvador. It was in Spanish, but she told us it means “I Have Joy in My Heart” in English. The children played tambourines to this joyful song. We also reviewed forte (loud) and piano (soft) in different ways. I (Ms. Kim) got to play in on the fun. I pretended to be asleep while the children walked around me singing in their piano voices. Once the music was loud, the children used their forte voices to wake me up! In addition, Ms. Lisa used rhythm sticks to review soft and loud. We tapped them loudly then rubbed them softly to different parts in a song. We then reviewed whole, half, quarter, and eighth notes. Lastly, we learned some new musical vocabulary. Staccato means bumpy and legato means smooth!

Science

Our first science experiment involved a bottle of colored water with vegetable oil and Alka-Seltzer tablets. The children made hypotheses about what would happen when the Alka-Seltzer tablets were dropped into the bottle. When Mr. John dropped a tablet into the bottle, the tablet dissolved but bubbles were created that floated up and down. We found out that when a tablet dissolved, carbon dioxide bubbles were created. The carbon dioxide bubbles carried the colored water to the top of the bottle. At the top of the bottle was the oil, and since oil and water don’t mix, the bubbles fell back down to the bottom.

Our next experiment involved a candle, balloons, and water. Mr. John lit the candle and waved a balloon over it. The balloon popped! Next he blew up another balloon but added water to it. The children made hypotheses about what would happen to this balloon. Did it pop also? No! The water absorbed the heat from the lit candle and prevented the balloon from popping.

Art

In Art we got ready for the International Festival by doing cultural projects. First we made koi fish windsocks to represent Japan. Ms. Michele explained that in Japan koi fish banners are made to represent different members of a family. The children enjoyed creating these windsocks out of construction paper. We used tissue paper, sequins, crayons, and googly eyes to decorate them.

In our next art lesson, the children made Aboriginal paintings to represent Australia. We learned that the Aborigines started pointillism (dot painting) to create pictures. The children drew an animal from Australia, and then filled in the animal by dotting with Q-tips that were dipped into different colored melted clay.

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 Africa. Try making a French recipe together as a family. Pull up a world map and review the names of the Oceans together. Discuss with your child their favorite sea creature.

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 Africa. Try making a French recipe together as a family. Pull up a world map and review the names of the Oceans together. Discuss with your child their favorite sea creature.

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Maria Montessori stated that, “It is true that we cannot make a genius. We can only give to the child the chance to fulfill his potential possibilities.” Remember, every child is unique and develops different skills and abilities at their own pace in their own time. I am very proud of how hard your children work in the classroom, and it is an honor to be their teacher.

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May/June 2015 Monthly Overview

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

5/4: 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?

5/11: 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.

5/18: 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.

5/25: 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?

6/1: 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.
5/4: Yy
5/11: Ss
5/18: Ii
5/25: Pp

Sight Words of the Week: Try to find each word in books as you read to your child.
4/6: Yet
4/13: Set
4/20: Lip
4/27: Pit
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 safety with your child (stranger danger, swimming safety, etc)


March 2015 Newsletter

The month of March has been very busy in our classroom. The children are loving being able to finally go outside and enjoy the warm weather! We’ve also learned all about Dr. Seuss, Space, Ohio, and about North America!

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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 Comes Back” with Ms. Kim and making a “Cat In The Hat” craft that you might have seen displayed on our bulletin board in the hall! The children also enjoyed learning about rhymes, making their own “plane ticket” after reading “Oh The Places You’ll Go”, and eating “ green eggs” made using green pudding and vanilla wafers.

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In week two, we enjoyed learning all about 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. We also learned first hand how a telescope works! The children also enjoyed making their own constellations using stickers with Ms. Kim! The children even asked me to keep the space books on our Science shelf for an extra week, because they were so interested in learning more!

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We learned all about Ohio during week three! The children learned all about 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 in order to protect their nest. We also learned that our state capitol is Columbus, and that our state tree is the Buckeye Tree.

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For St. Patrick’s Day, the children also enjoyed making a shamrock craft with Ms. Kim during Preschool lesson, and reading a story about how St. Patrick’s Day became a holiday. The children really enjoyed decorating their shamrock with Lucky Charms!

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During the fourth week of March, we began our discussion about countries and continents. We began by discussing that a continent is a large “chunk” of land that is divided up into smaller “ pieces” called countries. We then took out the map of North America puzzle and began to name some of the countries. We learned all about Mexico, Canada, and The United States, and I even discussed with the children a trip to Haiti that I took several years ago. The children are enjoying learning about new cultures and customs of other countries, and they have been asking great questions!

Enrichments (Ms. Kim)

Music

In music, the children spent time getting familiar with the piano (keyboard). They listened to different high and low sounds, animals, sounds in nature, and musical instruments. Sometimes Ms. Lisa played a sound on the piano, and the students had to guess what the sound was. The children practiced listening for the differences in high and low sounds by playing the Cat and Mouse game. “Mice” came out to play when high sounds were played, and “cats” came out to play when low sounds were played. Ms. Lisa explained that the high sounds on a piano are on the right, while the low sounds are on the left. The children got to play both white and black keys on the piano.

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Science

During the first half of the month Mr. John did experiments with objects that either sank, floated, or did both! First we made hypotheses on whether or not a crumpled piece of construction paper would float or sink in water with dishwashing soap. The piece of paper floated in plain water but sank in the soapy water. The paper was able to sink to the bottom because the dishwashing soap breaks the strong bonds in plain water.

Next we made hypotheses on whether or not raisins would sink or float in a glass of ginger ale. When the raisins were dropped in, they floated and sank repeatedly. Mr. John called them “dancing raisins”! Ginger ale and other soda pops have carbon dioxide bubbles. These carbon dioxide bubbles attached themselves to the raisins and brought them to the top. Once the bubbles popped, the raisins sank to the bottom.

For the last experiment, we looked at hot and cold water. When a jar of cold blue water was placed on a jar of hot red water, the water mixed and turned purple. When we switched the jars and put the jar of hot red water on top of the jar of cold blue water, the water did not mix or turn purple. Why? The hot water must be on the bottom for the water to mix because hot water is less dense than cold water.

Art

For our first art lesson, we looked at Dr. Seuss’ artwork. Ms. Michele read the students Fox in Socks to show how imaginative Dr. Seuss was. Then the children created their own imaginative or “dreamy” piece of art by drawing with oil pastels.

Next Ms. Michele taught a lesson on mosaics. She explained how Romans made mosaics using many tiles. The pictures created by the tiles were made to remember important events that had taken place. So, the children thought of things that were important to them and then created mosaics of these things by gluing down square pieces of foam.

 

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For our last lesson, Ms. Michele discussed the artist James Demski or “JIMBOT”. This artist has created artwork with many robots. So, the children had fun drawing their own robots with oil pastels. These robots did many things like cutting grass, cleaning, and cooking!

This coming month, I encourage you to review with your child what they have learned. Take time to look at the night sky as a family and look for some constellations. Try a new Mexican restaurant together. Read Green Eggs and Ham together with your child and point out the rhyming words.

Maria Montessori said that,”To aid life, leaving it free, however, that is the basic task of the educator.” I consider it my joy and privilege to aid the lives of your children, and in turn, I enjoy watching them thrive in the freedom they have to learn and discover!


April 2015 Monthly Overview

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

4/6:        All About South America/ Africa

  • Finding South American on a globe.
  • Learning about the people, languages, and cultures of South America.
  • Learning all about the Amazon Rainforest.
  • Finding Africa on a globe.
  • Learning about the people, languages, and cultures of Africa.

 

4/13:     All About Europe/ Asia

  • Finding Europe on a Globe.
  • Learning about the people, languages, and cultures of Europe.
  • Finding Asia on a Globe.
  • Learning about the people, languages, and cultures of Asia.
  • Teapot Craft, Tasting French Food, and making Japanese Fans.

 

4/20:     All About Asisa / Australia / Antartica

  • Finding Australia on a globe.
  • Learning about the people, languages, and cultures of Australia.
  • Finding Antarctica on a globe.
  • Learning about Arctic animals and designing a flag for Antarctica.
  • Vocano experiment, learning about Japanese music.

    

4/27:     All About the Ocean

  • Naming and locating all of the oceans.
  • Learning about Jellyfish.
  • All about Sharks.
  • Learning about Crabs and Octopuses.

 

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

4/6: Aa

4/13: Cc

4/20: Rr

4/27: Tt

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

4/6: and

4/13: can

4/20: rag

4/27: the

 

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

  • Try making a new Italian recipe together as a family.
  • Take a trip to the Cleveland Aquarium and ask your child how many different types of sea creatures they can name!
  • Learn to count to 10 together, as a family, in Japanese.
  • Practice naming the continents at home using a globe or a map.

February 2015 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!

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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 making “Name Trains” in Preschool lesson, turning their names into a train. 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! The children also enjoyed using the sink or float work during Preschool lesson and during work time!

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We learned about many different types of arctic animals during the second week of February. The children learned about how many arctic animals have a layer of blubber underneath their skin and how is keeps them warm at night. They also learned that 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 Preschool lesson.

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During week three, we learned all about Presidents. We learned that 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 discussed 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. We also learned that Abraham Lincoln’s Picture is on the five dollar bill and the penny.

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We learned all about dental health during the final week of February. We learned all about how when we are young, we only have ten twenty when we are younger. Later, when we become adults, we have twenty-eight 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!

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Enrichments

In music class, we sang hello to Rainbow the Dragon and Bernie the Bernard by using our loud, soft, high, and low voices. Ms. Lisa had the students play some of their favorite games this month. To reinforce high and low sounds, the students pretended to be horses. When high sounds were played, the students galloped with jingle bells. When low sounds were played, the students galloped with castanets. Another high/low sounds game we played was Mice and Cats. When high notes were played, the “mice” came out to play. When the low notes were played, the “cats” came out to try and catch the “mice!” Then, Ms. Lisa brought in her keyboard piano. She used the keyboard to make the sounds of the instruments used in Peter and the Wolf. I was surprised that the children remembered what characters from the story were represented by the instruments. They also remembered the names of the instruments! Way to go! Lastly, we sang some of our favorite songs like If All the Raindrops, BINGO, and Wheels on the Bus.

In science class, Mr. John had the students make many hypotheses about whether items would sink or float. Our first experiment involved two balls of play dough. Mr. John turned one of the balls of play dough into a bowl. When we dropped both play dough items into water, the bowl floated and the ball sank. Why? The play dough turned into a bowl had more surface area which allowed it to push enough water away to stay afloat. Then we looked at lemons and limes. The lemons floated and the limes sank. This was a tricky one. Both fruits have similar density, however the limes are just slightly more dense which causes them to sink. Last, we looked at two oranges, one peeled and one not. The peeled orange sank and the orange with its peel floated. We learned that the orange with its peel keeps in an air bubble which allows it to float. Once that peel is taken off, the air bubble is allowed to escape.

Our favorite project this month was called Dancing Fingers. Students learned about the artist, Monet. They dipped their fingers in many different color paints and with dancing fingers made picture creations of what ever they could imagine! Then they added white paint to their creation to add the tint. This shows light on a picture, just like they learned Monet would have done.

In conclusion, I encourage you to review with your child what they have learned this month. Discuss with them their favorite arctic animal. Take a ride on a train or a boat (when the weather is warmer). At the grocery store, as your child to point out which foods are good for their teeth, and which ones are not. Discuss with your child about what they learned about the job of the president.

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As Maria Montessori stated, “Children are human beings to whom respect is due, superior to us by reason of their innocence and of the greater possibilities of their future.”. I truly believe this, and I am truly amazed as I watch how your children have grown this year so far! I look forward to seeing the wonderful individuals that they will become in the future, who will one day change our world for the better!


Ms. Kristen’s March 2015 Monthly Overview

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

3/2:        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.
  • Try Green Eggs and Ham.

 

3/9:        All About Outer Space

  • Learning all about the Moon.
  • What is a Star?
  • Discovering the planets in our solar system.
  • Learning all about Astronauts.
  • All about constellations.

 

3/16:     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 life in Akron, Stow, Cuyahoga Falls, etc.

    

3/23:     All About North America

  • Learning about the United States and its culture and customs.
  • Learning about Canada and its culture and customs.
  • Learning about Mexico and its culture and customs.
  • Learning about Jamaica and its culture and customs.

 

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

3/2: Qq

3/9: Bb

3/16: Ww

3/23: Zz

 

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

3/2: Quick

3/9: Bud

3/16: Was

3/23: 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 Planetarium at the Natural History Museum in Cleveland.
  • Practice your address with your child. This is very important for them to start learning early!
  • Try food at a local Mexican restaurant.

January 2015 Newsletter

January was a busy month in our classroom! We were so exited to welcome Giana, Tenleigh, and Hadley into our classroom! They fit right in and we all love having them be a part of our class! We also enjoyed diving back into working in our classroom!

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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, and how to roll up our rugs. 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 Helen Keller. The children also all signed their own names to our “Peacemaker Promise” that you might have seen on the outside of our door.

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We learned all about different types of art during the third week. We learned about Vincent Van Gough, and how he was a famous painter. The children also enjoyed learning about primary colors,making a mosaic flower, and making a collage of their favorite things.

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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 being blindfolded and 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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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 a trip to the Akron Art Museum as a family or create art together at home.

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Enrichments:

In music class this month, the children practiced using their soft, loud, high, and low voices to sing hello to Tina the Turtle, Jerry the Giraffe, and Nemo the Fish! Ms. Lisa began her Peter and the Wolf story. The children were introduced to the characters in the story and what musical instruments from the orchestra they are represented with on the CD. Most of the children could recognize when specific characters were coming up in the story. For example, as soon as they heard the flute they knew the bird was talking. Ms. Lisa left us wondering when the wolf is going to show up in the story. We will find out next week! We also had some fun listening and dancing to the music of Mozart. Ms. Lisa had the children dance with scarves and pretend to be little birds. Lastly, we sang some of our favorite songs such as “Baby Bumblebee”, “Wheels on the Bus”, “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star”, and “No More Monkeys Jumping on the Bed”.

In Science class this month, Mr. John came to our classroom to do a diaper experiment! First he showed the children his materials: a diaper, measuring cup with water, measuring cup without water, and paper towels. Then, he placed a paper towel in the empty measuring cup, and poured three ounces of water over top of the paper towel. He asked the children if they thought the water would stay in the paper towel if he turned the measuring up upside down over his head. No the water did not stay! It poured onto Mr. John’s head. The paper towel could not hold all of the water. Next, he placed the diaper into the empty measuring cup, and poured six ounces of water over top of the diaper. Did the water stay or pour out onto Mr. John’s head? The water stayed in the diaper! So, we decided to try twelve ounces of water. The water still did not pour out. Why? The diaper has a special chemical that absorbs and holds water. Glad we have these diapers for babies!

In Art class this month, the students began their imaginary creatures. This is a project that Ms. Michele spends a couple weeks on. During the first week, she showed the children pictures of mythological creatures and discussed the history of them. She also passed around colorful eggs and had the students brainstorm what creatures could come out of them. Next, the children picked two animals off Ms. Michele’s board to mix together. Their goal was to take characteristics from each animal to make a new imaginary animal. They drew and colored in these new creatures. During the second week, the children took these drawings and used them to help make the creatures with clay. Ms. Michele gave them foil to first mold the creatures bodies. Then the children covered the foil with white clay. Next week we will add color to our creatures and really make them come to life!

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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, who She believed this so much, that she credited the children she worked with when she said, “It is not true that I invented whats called the Montessori Method. I have studied the child, I have taken what the child has given meand expressed it, and that is what is called the Montessori Method.”

I consider myself blessed to be an observer and servant of your child, and it is a true joy!


Ms. Kristen’s February 2015 Monthly Overview

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

2/2: Transportation

  • What is Transportation?
  • Discuss trains and how they operate.
  • Discuss airplanes and how they fly.
  • Learning about busses and how they take us different places.
  • Discuss boats and how they are able to float on the water.

 

2/9: Polar Pals/ Valentine’s Day

  • Discussing Penguins – What they eat, where they live and more.
  • Learning about Polar Bears- Where they live, how they stay warm and more.
  • Discussing Beluga Whales- Where they live live, what they eat and more.
  • Discussing Seals-Where they live, how they stay warm, what they eat and more.
  • History of Valentine’s Day and Valentine’s activities.

*Valentine’s Party, Friday, February 13th

 

2/16: Presidents

  • Discussing Abraham Lincoln and his life.
  • Learning about George Washington, the father of our nation.
  • Learning about our current president, Barack Obama
  • Learning about the American Flag, and what the different parts symbolize.
  • Discussing the Pledge of Allegiance and what the words mean.

*Monday, February 16th President’s Day- NO SCHOOL

 

2/23: Dental Health

  • Discuss Dental Health
  • Learn what foods are healthy for our teeth.
  • Learn the parts of the tooth.
  • Why do we loose our baby teeth?
  • Learn about the job of a Dentist.

 

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

2/2: Kk

2/9: Gg

2/16: Mm

2/23:Oo

 

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

2/2: Kid

2/9: Go

2/16: Me

2/23: Off

 

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

  • Make Valentines together with your child. Have them sign their own name to the cards.
  • Practice saying the Pledge of Allegiance with your child at home.
  • Practice teeth brushing with your child. Make a healthy snack together as a family that will promote dental health.
  • Practice the letter of the week with your child by playing “I Spy”. This is a great way to help them learn initial sounds. Remember to focus on the sound of the letter and not the name of the letter.

December 2014 Newsletter

The month of December has been full of fun and merriment in our classroom! The children have enjoyed learning about the weather, the different parts of the orchestra, and about different symbols of the holiday season. We had a blast!

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During the first week of December, we learned about weather. The children enjoyed learning about the job of a meteorologist how it is their job to scientifically predict the weather. Ms. Kim and I also have been having the children keep track of how many Sunny, Cloudy, Windy and Rainy days there have been this month. In true Ohio fashion, there were more cloudy days. I’ve also noticed that the children have been paying attention to the weather report in the mornings before school, and have been sharing what the Meteorologist has stated that the weather will be like that day!

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During the second week in December, the children learned about the different parts of the orchestra. They learned that all instruments belong to a “family”, such as String, Woodwind, Brass, and Percussion. The children also enjoyed listening to sound clips of the different instruments in our parts of the orchestra work, and placing the cards in each family of instruments from the highest sounding instrument to the lowest sounding instrument. The children also enjoyed making a book of all of the instrument families as well with Ms. Kim during Pre-school Lesson.20141212_102140

During week three of December, we learned about the different symbols of the Holidays. First, we learned about reindeer, which are also called caribou. We learned that they are mammals and that they are herbivores. The children also enjoyed making a reindeer craft with Ms. Kim. We also went over to Mr. John’s room to make Ginger bread houses with Ms. Dana and also over to Ms. Kate’s room to make reindeer food!

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Enrichments:

In music class, Ms. Lisa got the students ready for the Christmas season! First, they did some review with “Penny the Pony”. Ms. Lisa used “Penny the Pony” to review the musical words for slow, medium, and fast. Then the children used egg shakers, bells, and castanets to help them sing and keep the beat to Christmas songs. We sang “He’ll Be Coming Round the Chimney”, “Jingle Bells”, “Jingle Bell Rock”, and “Deck the Halls”. Thanks to Ms. Lisa for getting us into the Christmas spirit!

In science, Mr. John did a very gooey experiment! He used water, green food coloring, glue, and borax (laundry detergent). First, he made the water green by adding the green food coloring. Then, he added the glue and borax to the water. When the borax was added, the mixture turned to goo! The borax acted like a polymer with the other ingredients. It didn’t matter if you stretched or pulled the goo apart. It always went back together.

In art, Ms. Michele continued her unit on shapes. During our first art lesson this month, the students looked at a painting to find different shapes, objects and lines. Then, we looked at another painting that only had circles, but these circles were different sizes and painted different colors. Next it was the children’s turn to create their own shape paintings. First, they used oil pastels to draw different sized shapes all over their papers. Then, the children painted their papers with watercolors. Painting over the oil pastels with the watercolors is a resist technique. The oil pastels resisted the watercolors, but the watercolors showed on the other parts of the paper.

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Our next art lesson also used shapes, but we used the shapes to make self-portraits. First, we looked at the artwork of Pablo Picasso. Picasso’s paintings allow you to look at pictures and objects from different perspectives. Some of the children looked at a painting and saw musical instruments, while other children saw a face. The children were able to see these different objects because of the different shapes Picasso used. After we learned about Picasso, the children created their own self-portraits using different shapes cut out of colored construction paper. Ms. Michele had the students first cut out large circles for their faces. Then, the students used their imaginations to cut and glue down other face features.

In conclusion, I would encourage you to track weather patterns with your child at home. Play I Spy with your child to practice the letter sounds they are learning at school. Take time to listen to classical music with your child and ask them about the different instruments they hear. As Maria Montessori stated,”We teachers can only help the work going on, as servants wait upon a master.” I agree, and it is truly a pleasure to serve your children.

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