Ms. Kate’s December 2016 Monthly Overview

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

12/05 Christmas Around the World
-Taking a look at the Christmas traditions in New Zealand, England, Germany, France, and The Netherland
-creating Christmas cards, cooking Christmas bread, Le Reveillon (traditional Christmas Eve meal) and many other traditions.
-How to say “Merry Christmas” in different languages

Afternoon group lesson: 12/05
Ame will be offering crafts, games and activities to enhance the children’s understanding of traditions around the world.

12/12 All about giving
This week we will be doing a variety of activities that teach the children about the act of giving. These activities include: wants vs. needs collage, a giving circle time activity, the construction on a “lovie” blanket and sending it to Good Neighbors, talking about the importance of donations and lastly, we will be writing and drawing letters to send to a nursing home.

Afternoon group lesson: 12/12
Ame will be providing a variety of holiday crafts.

12/19 Reindeer
Having fun reading the book Wild Christmas Reindeer and creating an activity that goes along with the book.

-Making Reindeer food
-KWL chart about Reindeers
-All about Reindeers in the wild.

Afternoon group lesson:
Ame will be focusing on making holiday ornaments, telling classic Christmas stories, and having fun at movie & PJ day!

12/22—
1/3 Christmas Break, School resumes Wednesday, January 4th
Things to do at Home this Month to reinforce our themes:

-Make cookies together. Deliver them to your friends, families and neighbors.
-Practice the spirit of giving or donation.
-Sing Christmas Songs together!


Ms. Kristen’s December 2016 Monthly Overview

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

12/5: Arctic Animals
-All about Polar Bears.
-All about Penguins.
-All about Arctic Foxes.
-Where is the Arctic?
-How do animals who live in the Arctic stay warm?
12/12: Parts Of The Orchestra/ Music
-Learning about Woodwind, Brass, String, and Percussion sections of the Orchestra.
-What is the job of the Conductor?
-Listening to performances by famous instrumentalists.
-Learning about Quarter Notes, Half Notes and Whole Notes.
-Learning about some famous composers.
12/19: Holiday Symbols / Merriment
-Discussing various holiday symbols such as the reindeer, poinsetta, or evergreen and the meaning behind them.
-Making gingerbread houses
-Singing Christmas songs.
-Making paper snowflakes to decorate our classroom door.
-Writing letters to Santa.

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

12/5: Ll
12/12: Ff
12/19: Dd

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

12/5: Let
12/12: Fit
12/19: Dog

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

-Discuss with your child what their favorite Arctic Animal is and why.
-Listen to classical music together as a family.
-Envolve your child in making Christmas cookies, or in plannning your Christmas dinner.
-While decorating your Christmas Tree, discuss with your child what they remembered learning about the Evergreen, and why it is a symbol of the Holiday Season.


Mr. John’s December 2016 Monthly Overview

December 2016

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

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

11/28—12/16  Christmas Show Practice

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

 

Christmas Show Rehearsal (not a dress rehearsal)

December 14th | 6:00pm

Cuyahoga Falls High School

431 Stow Ave. Cuyahoga Falls, OH  44221

 

Christmas Show

December 16th | 6:30pm

Cuyahoga Falls High School

431 Stow Ave. Cuyahoga Falls, OH  44221

 

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

 

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

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

 

 


December 2016 Academic Enrichment Overview | Cuyahoga Falls Campus

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

Junior Great Books Reading Group

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

 

11/28:  Parts of a Animals

  • Parts of a mammal, amphibian, and bird
  • Parts of a reptile and fish
  • Working with animal puzzles and control charts

 

12/05:  Parts of Arachnids/Insects

  • Parts of a spiders
  • Parts of a wasp

 

12/12:    Use of a Ruler

  • Inches and Centimeters
  • Measuring with a ruler– practice with many different objects
  • Recording measurements

 

12/22—1/3       Christmas Break—School Resumes Wednesday, January 4th

 

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

11/28: no synonym/sight words of the week

12/05:  no synonym/sight words of the week

12/12: no synonym/sight words of the week

 

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

  • Practice measuring different objects at home and recording those measurements.

 

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

 


Explorations of Elementary 2016 – December Overview

Explorations of Elementary 2016 – December Monthly Overview

Below is an overview of some of the things we will be covering in the classroom over the course of December in additional to individual/small group lessons.

Research

  • Our first-year students will be researching Earth and Mars. They will begin researching external characteristics of invertebrates, starting with Protozoans.
  • Second year students will research the characteristics that set birds and mammals apart from other vertebrates. They will also research dehiscent and indehiscent fruit.  These students will also continue their research of rocks and minerals with a discussion on the rock cycle.
  • Students researching the human body will focus on the heart and lungs.
  • Our fourth-year students will continue researching early humans.
  • All students will review our previous studies of North and South America.

Reading Groups

  • One of our groups will read leveled readers. One group will read short stories and fables to discuss theme and the moral of stories.  The groups reading The Tale of Despereaux and Where the Red Fern Grows will complete those books.
  • Within reading group, we will be reviewing Reading Workshop skills in preparation of beginning Writer’s Workshop in January.

Spelling Rules

  • Students will review all previous spelling words and will be reassessed. New spelling groups and words will begin in January.

Field Trips and Special Events

  • December 14: Christmas Show Rehearsal
  • December 16: Christmas Show
  • December 21: Pajama Party – Lunch will be provided. We won the Box Tops contest and will have pizza and sides provided for all students.  We will bake cookies together, as well.

 

 

 


Explorations of Elementary October 2016 Newsletter

Explorations of Elementary 2016 – October Newsletter

What an exciting month October has been!  Our second, third, and fourth grade students have researched holidays for the upcoming months that they have started to present to the class.  Some students took a “Walking Field Trip” to the Tallmadge Circle to practice map skills that were introduced last year.  Other students were introduced to, or continued practicing, compass and map key skills outside.  Our second-year students kicked off their rock and mineral study with learning about the layers of the Earth.  A few older students have begun their body research by learning about our skeleton.

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After learning about the order of the planets and their distance from the sun last month, we started our monthly continent studies.  This month we focused on North America.  Students learned the names of the countries and islands in the Caribbean, we discussed famous landmarks in North America, and looked through items from the continent in our “Secret Basket.”

Our students worked very hard to memorize their lines from “The Drama of the Archeozoic Ocean” to present to Ms. Courtney’s class.  We practiced each day and made our own costumes.  In order to make our costumes, our students had to use their research and computer skills to find what these early, and sometimes microscopic, life forms looked like.

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Taking care of Vinny and Kernel has become second nature.  We feed Vinny daily, and play with him frequently.  Vinny is now excited when students come to pet him in his cage.  He is so active each morning when it is time to be fed!  Kernel is getting used to being held by me and the students enjoy watching.  Many students have helped prepare his food and watch him eat.  They often try to imitate how large he can open his mouth.  Kernel shed for the first time this month.  We laminated his skin and measured the length in inches and centimeters.  It was such an exciting day!

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Along with the responsibility of taking care of animals, our students have the privilege to teach their knowledge to others.  Two students found an exciting section of a botany book about growing plants indoors.  These students wrote out a lesson plan, gathered their supplies, and presented their lesson to their peers, including some kindergarten students.  Along with their lessons, the students had handouts of plant information for each child, which they helped them read to understand the process of growing, and taking care of, a plant.

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All students have been working on different measurement lessons.  Some have been introduced to measuring in inches and centimeters, some are measuring to ½ and ¼ inches, some are using the yardstick, and some are learning about weighing in grams.  To add to our measurement curriculum, Ms. Sara’s husband, Steve, brought his expertise (and patience) to help us with a project.  We will be building a peace pole for our playground with Ms. Courtney’s class.  We will have the word “Peace” written in different languages and the pieces decorated by both classes at the Tallmadge campus.  The students were so excited to measure, cut, and sand their own pieces.  Soon we will begin painting them.  Ms. Sara’s husband will return to help us build the pole and display it near the playground as a reminder that we are all important and all connected.

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With our excitement of building, we also had our first classroom party!  The Halloween party was a success!  We participated in a parade with Ms. Courtney’s room.  We did a blind drawing contest where students drew spooky creations with their eyes closed.  Pumpkin bowling was definitely a favorite!  Almost everyone got a strike!  Before the students went to gym we had a mummy contest.  Students picked their own groups, designed a mummy costume using toilet paper and had to complete tasks without their costume falling apart.  To end our Halloween celebrations, a student shared their report on Halloween and we learned the history of the jack-o-lantern before carving our own.

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In Reading Group, we have two groups reading different stories of our Junior Great book series.  Another group is reading The Tale of Despereaux.  Our final group completed The Indian in the Cupboard.  We have introduced and reviewed how to use a dictionary and thesaurus.  Students have learned a fun activity called “The Fish Bowl” where they challenge their memory spelling phonetic or high-frequency words.  All groups have reviewed the function of the adjective.  Some of the groups learned logical agreement of adjectives, adjective suffixes, proper adjectives, and adjective opposites.

We are looking forward to all of our adventures to come in the month of November!


Ms. Kate’s October 2016 Newsletter

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Reading Group |Kindergarten Students
with Ms. Kate

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

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

 

Enrichment Classes

Art Class
by Ms. Ame

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

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

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

Science Class
by Ms. Kathleen
This month in Science class we saw quite a few different experiments! I will showcase our two favorite below. The children were able to learn about solubles. The discovered what happens when you place pieces of different colored Skittles and Gobstoppers in a plate and add water to them. The colors run, collide, but do not mix. This is because each candy is coated with wax. The wax is not water soluble, and prevents any mixing from happening.

Next students were able to explore dry ice! When you place it into a pot and pour warm water over it, it looks like a witches pot!! What causes the bubbling steam? Pouring water over the dry ice causes the dry ice to warm up rapidly. This creates the fog we saw coming from the pot. Dry ice is frozen Carbon Dioxide. It is able to turn from a solid to a gas without going through the liquid stage. I think this was their favorite experiment this month! It created the most excitement!

20161020_142536  20161027_085812

 

Music Class
by Ms. Sabrina

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

 


Ms. Kristen’s October Newsletter 2016

October was a very exciting month in our classroom! I am so proud of how well the children are working in the classroom and with the desire to learn new things every day! In October, the children learned all about Farm Life, Pumpkins, Characteristics of Fall, Bats, Spiders, and about Halloween. Also, we welcomed two new friends into our classroom. Welcome Casey and Everett!

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During the first week of October, the children learned all about farm life. We learned the American Sign Language words for cow, chicken , pig, horse, and cat. The children also enjoyed making home made butter from whipping cream. We put the whipping cream in a tupperware container and shook it as hard as we could until it became butter. It was delicious!

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It was all about pumpkins during week two! We learned all about the parts of the pumpkin, how it grows, and what kinds of foods we can make from a pumpkin. We also carved a pumpkin into a Jack-O-Lantern. The children loved scrapping out the inside of the pumpkin with a spoon. Ms. Kerri and I even put a candle inside of the pumpkin to add a spooky atmosphere to our classroom. We then took the seeds we removed from the pumpkin and we baked them in the oven for a tasty treat!

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During week three, we learned all about the characteristics of Fall and about leaves. We learned that in the Fall, the temperature outside becomes cooler outside and the leaves begin to change color. We also learned about the different parts of the leaf. The children also enjoyed a parts of the leaf work that Ms. Kerri and I put on the shelf. The children also used crayons to make prints of leaves on paper as Ms. Kate’s students were kind enough to make a Leaf Printing work for us to put on our shelf!

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We learned quite a bit about bats during the fourth week of October. We learned that bats sleep during the day. We also learned that some bats eat insects while others eat fruit. The children were also surprised to learn that not all bats are blind, but those who are use echo location to find shelter and to hunt for food. The children also learned that bats are mammals, and enjoyed discovering the similarities and differences between bats and birds while reading the book “Stellaluna”. The children also enjoyed playing a Echolocation Game during preschool lesson.

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Finally, I encourage you to review with your child what they have learned this month. Take a fall hike as a family and collect leaves. Review the parts of a leaf together. Try out a new pumpkin recipe with your child, allowing them to help you measure and stir the ingredients. Discuss the fun bat and spider facts they learned with your child!

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As Maria Montessori stated, “ To aid life, leaving it free, however, that is the basic task of the educator.”. It is my duty and privilege to aid your child in the beginning stages of their education!

 

Academic Enrichment | Kindergarten Students
with Mr. John

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

We went over telling time to the hour(o’ clock), half past(:30), and quarter after(:15), quarter til(:45), and to the minute.

Reading Group |Kindergarten Students
with Ms. Kate

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

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

 

Enrichment Classes

Art Class
by Ms. Ame

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

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

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

 

Science Class
by Ms. Kathleen

This month in Science class we saw quite a few different experiments! I will showcase our two favorite below. The children were able to learn about solubles. The discovered what happens when you place pieces of different colored Skittles and Gobstoppers in a plate and add water to them. The colors run, collide, but do not mix. This is because each candy is coated with wax. The wax is not water soluble, and prevents any mixing from happening.

Next students were able to explore dry ice! When you place it into a pot and pour warm water over it, it looks like a witches pot!! What causes the bubbling steam? Pouring water over the dry ice causes the dry ice to warm up rapidly. This creates the fog we saw coming from the pot. Dry ice is frozen Carbon Dioxide. It is able to turn from a solid to a gas without going through the liquid stage. I think this was their favorite experiment this month! It created the most excitement!

20161020_142536  20161027_085812

Music Class
by Ms. Sabrina

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


Mr. John’s October 2016 Newsletter

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

 

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Line Time Lessons:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Academic Enrichment | Kindergarten Students
with Mr. John

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

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

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

 

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Reading Group |Kindergarten Students
with Ms. Kate

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

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

Enrichment Classes

Art Class
by Ms. Ame

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

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

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

 

Science Class
by Ms. Kathleen

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

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

 


Ms. Courtney’s October 2016 Newsletter

Primary Room

During the month of October the class learned about all the changes that happen during the beautiful Fall season.  For the first week we discussed leaves, how and why they change, and different types of leaves.  The kids also enjoyed collecting their own leaves for leaf rubbing.

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The second week of October the students learned about apples.  They got to taste test several different types of apples and vote on what was their favorite kind.  We discovered what the inside of an apple looks like and how they grow.  Some of the students even brought home beautiful paintings using apples as stamps.

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Next, the class learned all about pumpkins.  We were able to explore the inside of what pumpkins look like by digging out the insides to separate the seeds from the pulp. The next day, the class was able to bake a pumpkin pie and try it. The students even made a Venn diagram comparing pumpkins and apples.

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The fourth week of October we turned our attention to bats.  We learned about different types of bats and even found out that there is a bat that is as small as a bumblebee! The class discovered how and where bats sleep and that they find their food through echolocation.

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During the last week the class learned about different body parts. The students even learned about the lungs and heart and made their own models. We introduced our anatomy apron and the children enjoyed learning about the organs and where they belong by attaching the fabric organs to the apron!

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I wanted to thank all the parents who helped out with the Halloween party.  It was definitely a success, and the kids enjoyed all of the crafts, games, and delicious food. We could not have had a more successful party!

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If you haven’t already please sign up for parent/teacher conferences, they will be held  on November 14th.

 

Academic Enrichment Group Time | Kindergarten
We went over telling time to the hour, half past, quarter after and quarter till. The kindergartners have been working hard and doing a great job on their journals. We will begin telling time to the minute the week of November 7th. Please review our updated overview.

 

Reading Group | Kindergarten
with Ms. Faith

Our kindergartners are gaining such great comprehension skills by participating in the Junior Great Book series. In October, we read The Frog Went A Travelin, Night Into Dawn, and The Tale of Two bad Mice. Within these stories, your kindergartners are learning higher-level comprehension, by having discussions to analyze the stories. Some of the activities the students get to complete are drawing parts of the stories, writing responses, writing poems, and even acting out parts of the stories. When they complete a picture, or writing response, the kindergartners are able to share with the group. I enjoy hearing their responses to the discussion questions, and seeing their detailed drawings. I am excited to see how their reading comprehension will improve by the end of the year. Thank you parents for reading with them over the weekends, and helping the kindergartners write their questions to share with the group.

 

Science
Over the past month, the students have been learning about the science behind the changes we see during fall.  We found out that the leaves change color because they are not receiving enough chlorophyll to keep their color green.  The students also learned the life cycle of apples, pumpkins, and bats.

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We also enjoyed some science experiments we turned milk and vinegar into plastic by mixing milk and vinegar together, then straining out the clumps to mold. The lumps left behind by the strained milk are called casein. Casein is a material that is produced when the protein in the milk reacts to the acid in the vinegar. The casein separates away from the acid and forms the lumps. It is plastic-like, but true plastics are made from polymers and not milk and vinegar.

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We dissolved sugar cubes in both hot and cold water and discovered that the cold water wasn’t able to dissolve as much sugar as the hot water. The hot water dissolved more because it has faster moving molecules which are spread further apart than the molecules in the cold water. Since the hot water had bigger gaps between the molecules, more sugar molecules were able to fit in between.

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We also transferred water using ‘capillary action. We took two paper towel ropes (or wicks) and put one end into two side glasses with water and the other side into an empty glass in the middle. The wicks started getting wet after a few minutes and after about an hour we noticed that the empty glass was starting to fill with water, and it kept filling until there was an even amount of water in each glass.

Lastly we made a hovercraft with a balloon, bottle cap and CD. As the air flowed downward out of the balloon and through the bottle cap, it built up air pressure under the CD. That air pressure lifted the whole hovercraft off the flat surface as air began to escape evenly all around the edge of the CD. Making the CD float on the cushion of air.

 

Music
This month Ms. Lisa focused on songs with manners and character building. We sang a song about having a choice about being kind and how to act when they are mad or upset. The students also played a game of rolling a ball to each other while singing a song about sharing. The class got to practice their listening skills by listening to different animal sounds, and then guessing what animal they were hearing. Throughout the course of October, your children got to use some different instruments, such as bells, tambourines, and egg shakers. They learned the rules of playing like a band. They had to wait until everyone had an instrument, and when Ms. Lisa told them to, they could pick up their instrument and play with her. This teaches the students self-control, and how to be patient. The young musicians have improved their ability to follow Ms. Lisa’s lead, and wait so patiently. Along with learning important musical terms and skills, we got to sing some old favorites like Skinamarinky Dinky Dink, and Skip to My Lou.

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Art
In the month of October we Ms. Michele taught us about some great artists, and techniques. The first week we got inspiration from an artist named Charlie Harper, who in known for his artwork with birds and animals. Ms. Michele had the students pick an animal to create out of construction paper shapes. They glued the shapes to a piece of construction paper to create their animal. We had lions, flamingoes, lizards, and much more. The next project was dealing with mood in art. Ms. Michele based the lesson off of Edward Munch’s painting The Scream. They saw happy paintings, sad paintings, and mad paintings. They then used oil pastels on black construction paper to draw themselves screaming and what was making them scream. The last week, the students got to make their very own playground. Ms. Michele showed the class pictures of different playgrounds from around the world. Before starting, Ms. Michele reviewed her rule of using liquid glue, which is, “Just a dot does a lot!” Each child was given a piece of green construction paper and the twisted, crimped, or made shapes to glue together and make their crazy playground.

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