2014-2015 May/June Newsletter

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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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!


2014-2015 May/June Newsletter

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Classroom

We started off May talking about the Solar System. The children learned the positions of the planets and their relative sizes and distances. They had a blast using 3D models of the sun and planets to put in order. We talked about how the sun is the biggest star and why it is so important. We discussed the different phases of the moon and made a classroom book of the phases during preschool lesson.

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The second week of May we talked about dinosaurs and what their habitats were like then the children did a dinosaur dig with our practical life work throughout the week. They learned different physical attributes of dinosaurs and their names. The children demonstrated an understanding of herbivores, omnivores and carnivores. We also made real life size paper dinosaur feet to compare to theirs in preschool lesson.

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The third week of May we talked about transportation the children quickly developed an understanding that transportation means to carry things from one place to another. We named all the different methods of transportation like plane, car, boat, bike, horse, train, bus, subway, helicopter etc. The children also had a blast painting with different forms of transportation.

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The children really enjoyed the last week of May when we talked about sports. The children used their gross motor skills to march, skip, gallop etc. They learned how to engage in imaginative and creative play indoors and outdoors involving their friends. We played a lot of games that involved team effort and good sportsmanship.

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The first week of June we focused on summer games, activities, and experiments the children could do at home. We also talked a lot about summer safety rules while playing outside and playing with or in water. The children also practiced A LOT and setup for the talent show.

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I hope everyone has a fabulous summer and I can’t wait to see all the smiling faces in the fall!

Kindergarten

In kindergarten lesson we finished our work with grammar. We went over how interjections help a sentence show more emotions, and we went over when to use a . ? ! We then reviewed when we capitalize words in a sentence. We capitalize the beginning word of a sentence, proper nouns and “I”.

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Science

The first week of May we did a fire resistant water balloon experiment. We filled a balloon with water, held a lite candle underneath it, and the balloon never popped! Water is a great substance for soaking up heat. The thin balloon allows the heat to pass through very quickly and warm the water. As the water closest to the flame heats up, it begins to rise and cooler water replaces it at the bottom of the balloon. This cooler water then soaks up more heat and the process repeats itself. In fact, the exchange of water happens so often that it keeps the balloon from ever popping! The soot on the bottom of the balloon is actually carbon. The carbon was deposited on the balloon by the flame, and the balloon remains undamaged.

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The second week we did a pepper and soap experiment. We filled a bowl up with water and sprinkled pepper on top of it. Once we added the soap the pepper instantly went to the sides of the bowl. The first question to ask is why the pepper flakes float. Why don’t they sink or dissolve in the water? Well, pepper is hydrophobic, meaning that water is not attracted to it. Because of that, the pepper can’t dissolve in the water. But why do the flakes float on top of the water? Water molecules like to stick together. They line up in a certain way that gives the top of the water surface tension. Because pepper flakes are so light, and hydrophobic, the surface tension keeps them floating on top. The next question to think about is why the pepper shoots to the sides when soap touches the water. Soap is able to break down the surface tension of water that’s part of what makes soap a good cleaner. As the soap moves into the water, and the surface tension changes, the pepper no longer floats on top. But the water molecules still want to keep the surface tension going, so they pull back away from the soap, and carry the pepper along with them.

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The third week we made our own functioning compass. All we needed was a magnet, needle, cork, tape and bowl of water. First we rubbed the needle against the magnet, then tapped it to the cork, and dropped it in the bowl of water. We watched in amazement as the needle briskly turned so that one end was pointing north. Wondering if it was a fluke, we dropped the needle in over and over again, and each time the result was the same. The needle would turn until it was pointing north.

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Art

By: Ms. Faith

To finish up an awesome year of art, Ms. Michele brought in some great projects for the students. The class got to make a 3-D animal out of construction paper using methods learned at the beginning of the year. Some of the animals students made where giraffes, dinosaurs, and foxes. To make their animals, they had to twist, bend, and glue the construction paper together. The next week, each student got to share one thing he or she learned from art class over the year to start off the lesson. Ms. Michele then reviewed what a tint and shade are, which a tint is any color mixed with white and a shade is any color mixed with black. Next, the class got to study real flowers for inspiration and then everyone headed outside to paint their own flowers while enjoying a lovely day. Our last lesson ended with the inspiration of our school’s field trip to the zoo. The students discussed what animals they want to see at the zoo to refresh their memory of zoo animals. The class then made their very own animals using pipe cleaners. Ms. Michele showed them how to build a frame for their animal and how to wrap and twist pipe cleaners around each other to make a solid creature. After everyone was finished, the students lined their animals up and got to look at each other’s creations just like they were at the zoo.

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The students absolutely love having art with Ms. Michele and we hope she has a great summer!

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Music

By: Ms. Faith

I can’t believe the school year is over, but we have had a great time in music class with Ms. Lisa! The students learned new music concepts this month, staccato and legato. Staccato is the musical term for notes that are played short and detached, legato is the musical term for notes that are played smoothly and in a flowing manner. To help the students learn the concept of staccato, Ms. Lisa played a song called “Bubble Song” and she blew bubbles for the class to pop to represent the shortness of the notes. We then danced with scarves to a song that played legato notes and waved the scarves around smoothly and when the staccato notes started, we danced quicker and used sharp motions with the scarves. The next week, our students’ grandparents got to come have a special music class during the schools’ grandparents’ day. The children got to show off their knowledge of musical terms and great memories. One of the grandparents even got to be a volunteer to help out with one of the activities! Everyone had such a blast enjoying music together.

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Thank you Ms. Lisa for a wonderful year of music! We hope you have a great summer and can’t wait until the first music class in the fall!

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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!


Brandy and Beth’s Corner

Week 38

Students are busy creating their Ohio Indian time period on a new Ohio Indian Timeline for our classroom. On Friday, students put their time period onto the blank timeline for all to observe. The time periods consisted of facts, pictures and dates. Also, students are researching and building some models of Indian housing of their favorite Ohio Indian tribe.

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Two more garden plots have been planted next to the playground, featuring peppers, tomatoes and many other edible selections. Quinoa and stevia are our native Indian plants we started from seed and are hoping to successfully grow. A wonderful parent volunteer brought the more mature edible plants, hoping we may get to try some of our produce before summer break. We will have to wait for the rest of our produce to be ready during the fall harvest, a great way to start back to school. Our parent volunteer worked with the students, guiding them in planting. Many students were surprised at their discovery of what manure is and that food is grown with a mixture of organic manure and matter.

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Brandy and Beth’s Corner

Week 35 & 36

Our students traveled to the Natural History Museum for the last time this year. We learned about our Ohio Indians and Indians in general. Then students inspected real artifacts and models of homes that archaeologists use and work with at the Natural History Museum daily. The instructor showed the students how to flint knap which was how Indians made their spear points, arrow heads and knives with our famous Ohio flint. Back at school, students have been introduced to our Native Indian Timeline and the BC/AD (BCE/CE) Timeline so they can delve into the history of Indians more.

Moms and Muffins was a fun way to start a Friday and the mothers got to take home a handmade uniquely crafted box with each student’s picture topping it. Also, preparations for the up and coming Grandparent’s Day started. Students began a Sketchbook Challenge that will allow the students to try new Art Techniques and have a craft that can be finished with their guest that day. Many memories will be shared.

Week 37

The planting of the garden has started! Students worked very hard at turning up the hard soil in the garden with hand tools. Next they removed all of the weeds to have a fresh start, trying their best to get all of the roots to cut down on future weeding. The Elementary students planted our first seeds for our Three Sister’s Garden. Corn is the first plant and then pole beans [or peas] and squash [or pumpkins] will be added. The corn provides the pole beans a place to climb and the squash spreads to block out the weeds. The Indians used this technique for optimum growing and a balanced diet that provided protein when meat was not available. Ask your child about the story of The Three Sisters and learn more about the history of our American heritage!

Grandparents Day was amazing! Our guests joined us for Latin and then spent some special time with their invitee discussing and making art that shared cherished memories to keep. Next, our guests joined the Elementary in the classroom trying out a few favorite work choices. Science Experiment Cards, Math and Timelines were favorite choices.The day ended with a fabulous Musical Performance from the Elementary students that included piano and recorders.

Students have chosen their Ohio Indians Project topics this week and have had further lessons on our BCE/CE Timeline. Other lesson strands that students may have had lessons are Attraction and Gravity and also, Decimal Fractions. Many students have been very interested in working with Money and Multiplication facts.


Brandy & Beth’s Corner

Week 33

Tremendous effort was put forth in preparing for the International Festival. Music was practiced and rehearsed. Lines became memorized. Costumes were created. Art and research came to completion. Some students worked on their dance moves. All the while, students continued working on different areas of the classroom and discussing new work and ideas.

All of the hard work paid off Friday night when all of our guests enjoyed the International Festival together! Amazing art work inspired by different continents with research graced the hall leading into the performance. Students sang, played bells and shared their knowledge about the darker stories involving the dark knight, their favorite hero, Batman! Our dance students showed the crowd their moves and everyone enjoyed the younger students lines and songs. After the performance, everyone immensely enjoyed new bites to eat from countries all around the world and also, the younger students’ artwork as centerpieces throughout the dining areas. It is nice that our entire community can enjoy such a grand meal together!


April 2015 Newsletter

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Classroom

We started April off by talking about the seven continents: Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Antarctica, Europe and Australia. We learned that Africa, is where the elephants, giraffes and lions live. South America has tropical forests and one of the longest rivers in the world the Amazon River. North America is where we live. Europe and Asia are together on the map, but Australia is an island where the kangaroo and koala bear live. Last but not least Antarctica is way down below frozen and home to the penguins.

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The last week of April we learned about the three R’s Recycle, Reuse and Reduce. Which are three great ways we can eliminate waste and protect our environment! We learned all about waste and how we choose to handle it affects our world’s environment and everything around us like the air, water, land, plants and even man-made things.

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Kindergarten

In kindergarten lesson we learned more parts of speech. We learned that a pronoun (I, me, he, she, herself, you, it, that, they, each, few, many, who, whoever, whose, someone, everybody, etc.) is a word that takes the place of a noun. That an adjective describes a noun. Adverbs describe verbs. That prepositions are ‘where’ words not a ‘where’ wolf.

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Science

The first week of April we made a salt volcano. We filled a jar with water and oil then we added a drop of food coloring. Since salt is heavier than water we sprinkled salt on the oil and it sank to the bottom of the mixture, carrying a blob of oil and food coloring with it. In the water, the salt started to dissolve. As it dissolved, the salt released the oil, which floats back up to the top of the water.

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The second week we did a water color transfer experiment. We filled one glass of water with a few drops of yellow food coloring and another glass of water with blue food coloring. We left the third glass empty. Next, we tore off some paper towel, rolled it up, and stuck one end in the blue water, and the other end in the empty glass. Then we did the same thing using the yellow glass of water and the empty glass. The blue and yellow colors started traveling up the paper towels. Once they became saturated, they dispensed the colored water into the middle glass and created a completely new color green! We also noticed that the middle glass, which was once empty, now had the same amount of colored water as the other two glasses.

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The third week we made rain clouds in a jar. We filled a jar up with water, squeezed shaving cream on top, and then put a few drops of food coloring on top of the shaving cream. Just like real clouds, the shaving cream cloud became saturated because there was too much water for it to hold so some leaked out just like rain falling from a cloud.

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The last week we did a gummy bear experiment and put a gummy bear in plain water, sugar water, salt water, vinegar, milk and baking soda water.  We let them sit for about 6 hours and then checked on them in the afternoon to see what had happened. The results were really surprising. Instead of dissolving, the gummies grew, some to almost triple their original size!

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Music

By: Ms. Faith

To start of the month of April, Ms. Lisa shared about her missions trip to El Salvador from spring break. She showed the students pictures of kids from the country and even sang songs she sang with them. Ms. Lisa discussed how the kids looked different from what the students look like, but they still enjoy games and music just like them. We reviewed the notes and how many counts each note receives, and the musical terms forte and piano. Forte is Italian for loud and piano for quiet. To reinforce these terms, the children marched in a circle around me singing “John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt” as I pretended to be asleep. They sang piano at first and then when it got to the part where they had to sing the la, la, la’s, they had to sing forte to try to wake me up. They got a kick out of trying to wake the teacher up! Along with reviewing the musical terms, Ms. Lisa had students use some instruments such as: tambourines, castanets, rhythm sticks, and egg shakers. Thank you Ms. Lisa for another great month of music class!

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Art

By: Ms. Faith

In celebration of the International Festival, Ms. Michele took the students on a couple journeys to different countries. The first trip she took us on was to Japan. The class learned about the celebration of Child’s Day and looked at pictures of decorations they use in the celebration. These decorations were, paper lanterns, dragons, and coy fish streamers. So, Ms. Michele had the students make the coy fish streamers out of construction paper. We decorated them with crepe paper, sequence, and different types of paper for scales. While the class was learning about the country, they listened to Japanese music to inspire their artwork. The next journey landed us in Australia where the class got to hear an instrument native to the country called the Didgeridoo, and watched a clip from Steve Irwin to hear his accent and see some of Australia’s animals. Ms. Michele showed pictures of the Aborigines that live there and their artwork. The students then got to use materials from the earth to paint a picture to look like an Aborigine painting. The class used turmeric, clay, charcoal, dirt, and terracotta mixed with water as their paint and Q-tips to make dots to fill in their drawing.

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To finish up the month, the class went back to the focus on a specific artist, Vincent Van Gogh. Ms. Michele showed a picture of his painting called “The Bedroom”. This inspired the project for the students to make a 3-D model of their “dream” bedroom. They got to use felt, markers, wooden pieces, and foam shapes to decorate their room. It was amazing to see the detail the students used to create their own bedroom. Thank you Ms. Michele for the adventure through art class!


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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It’s Been A Long Time Since I Rock And Rolled…

It’s Been A Long Time Since I Rock And Rolled              

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Ahhhh, Led Zeppelin sums it up nicely.  Yes, it has been a long time since I rock and rolled.  It seems this all started right around the time my first child was born in October of 1999.  Is this a coincidence?  Maybe.  It just seems that (while driving in a mini van from my cool Sentra) my music of The Cure, Nine Inch Nails, KMFDM, Peter Gabriel, Black Flag, New Order, and Joy Division was quickly replaced by Raffi, Veggy Tales, and Barney sing a longs.  I am not sure if this was a gradual or an immediate thing.  All I know it happened leaving me shell shocked and wondering where my carefree days of Ohio State and John’s Life BC (Before Children) disappeared.  I recently went to the The Ohio State Spring Game.  As we were stuck in traffic going home going through campus I saw many parties.  I longing looked upon the revelers hanging out on porches, and downing adult beverages.  The person I was with said I was being ridiculous. She said I am an old “29” years old, I have a bad knee, can’t stand loud noises, recreationally drink Pepto Bismol, and got to bed at 8pm.  Geeesh, talk about being brutally honest!  Recently, I did get a glimpse of that past life(sort of).  We went to the downtown restaurant Cilantro because I was craving Thai food.  The food, the people at the restaurant, and the décor made me, for a very short moment, feel “hip” again.  Well, if thats all it takes…. I will take it because it has been a long time since I rock and rolled.

Line Time Lessons

The Continental Tango, Kookaburra, My Aunt Monica, and What a Small World it is.  Those thoughts and music is still ringing in my ears.  As you know these were the songs sung at the International Festival.  We learned about all the continents and some of the individual countries within the continents.  The students had fun learning about the climates, foods, clothes, and differences of how children attend school. I wanted to thank all of those who came in and talked about different countries.  This adds so much to International Festival month.  All the presentations are fun, informative, and the children and teachers enjoy it.

It never ceases to amaze me how much our students can learn in a short amount of time.  They did a fabulous job with their lines and performing the songs.  Not to mention how colorful the stage was with their costumes.  I cannot give enough thanks to the people who prepared the food!  Who didn’t gain ten pounds that night?

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We returned to normalcy in the classroom the last week in April.  We learned about life cycles.  A life cycle is nothing more than the birth of a creature, the creature grows, reproduces, then dies.  Wow, this is our life in a nutshell?  A humans life cycle is pretty boring compared to the life cycle of frogs/toads and butterflies/moths.  The students now know that a butterfly comes from a chrysalis and a moth comes from a cocoon.  The children learned a really big word called metamorphosis. This is what happens during the butterfly’s life cycle.

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We had three guest readers this month. We had Jade who attends St. Joe’s and is in the second grade.

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Taylor who is in the second grade and attends Preston (C.F.).

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James who is in first grade and attends Dunbar (Tallmadge).

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Kindergarten

In the kindergarten lesson we continued our work with grammar. The students learned the pronoun takes the place of a noun.  We looked at the adjective which describes nouns and pronouns, the adverb which describes the verb and usually ends in “ly”, the conjunction which connects two sentences or thoughts and acts like a bridge.

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Cultural Subjects

My line time and the kindergarten class count to ten in 25 different languages (English, Sign Language, Spanish, German, French, Greek, Italian, Romanian, Russian, Tagalog, Polish, Irish, Welsh, Hebrew, Arabic w/the Lebanese dialect, Japanese, Hungarian, Swedish, Swahili, Korean, Serbo-Croation, Hindi, Flemish/Dutch, Malay, Cebuano),

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MUSIC

At our first music class this month Ms. Lisa shared her pictures from her trip to El Salvador. .Ms Lisa traveled there on a medical mission trip entertaining children with her musical skills, while they were waiting in line to see a Doctor.Then she gave each child a Tambourine. They used these while they were dancing in a circle to the Spanish song “I have joy in my heart”, and then to the song “John Jacob Jingle Him-er Smith.” This song was fun for them because they were either singing it real soft or loud,. Our students enjoyed hearing about her trip! This month, Ms Lisa reviewed 4 musical notes with the children. They are the whole note, 1/2 note, 1/4 note,and 1/8 note. The children clapped along to the different speeds the notes make. Next, she gave them rhythm sticks and the used them to march to the song “The Ants Go Marching.” Then they used the rhythm sticks to tap along to fast or slow music. Ms Lisa also taught the children that the musical term for soft is called Staccato. We always have fun a learn in Music class!

SCIENCE

This month is Science Mr. John first did an experiment with an empty clear bottle, Vegetable Oil, Alka-Seltzer and water. He filled up the bottle first with 1/4 water then added red food coloring, filled the rest up with the oil. The oil and water then separate because of the density, then he added the Alka-Seltzer tablets to this it produced carbon dioxide bubbles because of the of the carbon dioxide tablets it brings the bubbles to the top. Oil is lighter and less dense then water. The next class Mr. John filled up two balloon’s. One with air and the other with air and some water. Then he held them both over a lit candle, the balloon filled with only air popped and the one with a small amount of water did not. Why? because water is a substance that soaks up heat therefore the rubber does not get hot and does not pop, the water takes the heat away from the balloon.

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ART

 

This month in Art, Ms. Michele had the children make fish lanterns in celebration of the Children’s Festival in Japan, she told them the different colored lanterns represented or meant different things to the Japanese people. The children really liked picking out their own colored paper for this project. The next art class Ms. Michele did Aborigine pointillism art painting with the students using paint made all from the earth such as clay and dirt.

 


April 2015 Newsletter

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

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

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The second week I introduced Africa. I explained to the children that Africa is the second largest continent next to Asia. The children learned about North Africa, South Africa, West and East Africa, and also about Central Africa. We had fun discussing their homes and how their houses are made of dried mud, stones, and sticks and how people in Central America live in villages and tend to only cook over an open fire since they do not have electricity. They also learned that the largest cities in Africa are Cairo, Egypt, Lagos, Nigeria, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Throughout the week the children learned about savannas, deserts, and rainforests that make up Africa. We also talked about how thousands of different kinds of plants grow in the rainforest, and how some of those plants provide food and medicine for people. At the end of our Africa lesson we went over the animals, people, language, music, and housing of Africa.

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

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During the third week we dove into India. The children learned India is a country with seventeen official languages, races, and religions. The children loved learning that India has 45,000 plant species, some of which are not found anywhere else in the world, and that India is divided into 25 states, each with its own governor, members of parliament, and lawmakers. The children also enjoyed learning about their traditional dressings, family life, and education.

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Our last week we were super busy practicing our lines and songs and making special crafts for our festival. Amongst all of the busyness the children learned about France, Spain, and the Netherlands. The children had so much fun learning to say “good day,” “hi,” “thank you,” “thank you very much,” and “goodbye” in French. The children were able to learn about their foods, different cultures and traditions, holidays, work that they do, farming, and things to do when you visit each country. While we were learning about Spain, the children learned the history behind the Running of the Bulls, Flamenco dancing and were able to watch a short video on these. Although this month has been very busy I really enjoyed teaching the children about the different countries. I loved showing them that all countries are different in many ways but also the same. I hope you have learned a little something and see you next time! Au Revoir!

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Ashley’s Corner:

This month we have been full of continental fun. We have traveled the world through books,stories and music. We have been learning about different cultures and how they live. We were able to learn different languages through the form of music. Our many visitors took us on amazing trips through Australia, Hungry and Italy with their great stories and food.

In science class with learned about the Bubble lava experiment. You will need a clean, plastic soda bottle, glass, jar, or baby soda bottle test tub, soda bottle can of vegetable oil (the cheaper the better), Food coloring, Alka-Seltzer tablet or fizzy tablets. Now how does it work? First of all, you confirmed what you already knew… oil and water do not mix. The molecules of water do not like to mix with the molecules of oil. Even if you try to shake up the bottle, the oil breaks up into small little drops, but the oil doesn’t mix with the water. Also, food coloring only mixes with water. It does not color the oil.

When you pour the water into the bottle with the oil, the water sinks to the bottom and the oil floats to the top. This is the same as when oil from a ship spills in the ocean. The oil floats on top of the water. Oil floats on the surface because water is heavier than oil. Scientists say that the water is more dense than the oil.

Here’s the surprising part… The Alka-Seltzer tablet reacts with the water to make tiny bubbles of carbon dioxide gas. These bubbles attach themselves to the blobs of colored water and cause them to float to the surface. When the bubbles pop, the color blobs sink back to the bottom of the bottle. Now that’s a burst of color! Your own homemade lava lamp… Now, go ahead and try this at home with your kids, I promise it will a lava fun!!

Music class has been so much fun. The kids have been exploring music notes. They are learning what they look like and what they mean. They have been going over the musical terms for fast and slow, and loud and soft. The children were able to take their knowledge and apply it to their singing and dancing. Our kids had a chance to use the egg shakers and rhythm sticks as well.They leaned some knew songs and Ms.Lisa introduced the kids to her new puppet friends, moose and puppy.

This month, Ms.Michelle had her art students make Koi Fish for their international festival. The koi fish is a Japanese fish that represent good luck and fortune. They turned out beautiful and they looked amazing at the International Festival. The next art project she did with the kids was all about the natural ingredients found on our earth. She had the children paint with mud, clay, tar, and other natural ingredients. The children used their imagination and their creations were great. The kids thought it was really neat to be able to paint with natural things you can find outside!