Explorations of Elementary 2016 – August/September Newsletter

Explorations of Elementary 2016 – August/September Newsletter

The first two weeks and the month of September have seemed to fly by!  We have really enjoyed getting to know our students and watching them learn to be a part of a team.  Our team building games allowed many different students to have the opportunity to be a leader.  We picked teams at first, then allowed the students to choose their own to figure out and assist each other in their strengths and weaknesses.  During our first two weeks we introduced and reviewed the rules of our classroom.  Having a multi-age classroom allows the returning students to be guides for the younger ones throughout our environment.  Seeing returning students take the lead and feel a sense of responsibility for setting the example is always exciting to watch.  We discussed the Constitution and its history, then split up into groups to make one for our classroom.  To get to know each other, we shared timelines of some important parts of our lives so far!

20160825_103104 20160823_143803

While we were getting to know each other, two new friends joined our environment!  Vinny the Guinea Pig and Kernel the Corn Snake are now deeply loved parts of our environment and Biology curriculum.  Learning about and taking care of these pets has been such a great experience for all the children, and us.  We feed Vinny and clean out his cage together.  We give him extra love every Wednesday, and occasionally some fruit at lunch time.  Kernel is still warming up to us, so we have discussed his scientific classification (Pantherophis guttatus), his natural habitat, how long he will eventually get (5 feet!), and how he will eat.  While we are waiting for him to come out of hiding, we created “Snake Handler” licenses that qualify each student to observe the snake, one at a time, carefully.  As long as the children follow the snake’s safety rules their license will not get revoked.  They took such pride in making these licenses and it helped them realize how important it is to make sure we are treating our animals carefully and kindly, even if we are so excited about them.

20160922_182311 snapchat-6581227800152362070

Our students participated in Montessori’s Five Great Lessons and their supplemental lessons.  We have discussed many different viewpoints of how the universe was created, how life came to be on earth, how humans came to be on earth, and the invention of language and numbers.  During the supplemental lessons we discussed the Story of Geometry, and how the Ancient Egyptians used a right-angled triangle to measure fields, and the Story of the Babylonians and their creation of the symbol for degrees.  In Physical Science, we have studied the Laws of the Universe.  Students especially loved practicing the laws of Inertia and Centrifugal Force.  In Biology, some students have started classifying living things into five kingdoms, some have started classifying animals by phyla, and others have learned the order of taxonomy.  In Math, we have started comparing fractions by greater than or less than, reviewed subtracting with the Golden Bead Material, practiced writing equations for squaring and adding and subtracting decimals.  We have discussed the shapes in our Geometric Cabinet, as well as, the size of angles and the intersection of straight lines to form oblique or perpendicular lines.

20160912_133126

During our Morning Meeting we allow five students to share exciting news from the day before.  This gives children time to share their exciting news without interrupting work time.  Sometimes during Morning Meeting we talk about important life skills.  One morning, we discussed being kind to others and how, according to Kid President, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, you aren’t thinking hard enough.”  Each student drew another’s name out of a basket and wrote something kind about them on the board for everyone to read during the day.  We saw children interact with others they usually may not, and expressing that gratitude by working together or simply giving each other a hug.

20160916_130825

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 is reading The Indian in the Cupboard.  We have introduced and reviewed the parts of a book, including the title, author, illustrator, copyright date, publisher, and dedication page.  We have discussed and listed various fiction and nonfiction books in the classroom.  We have also started learning about the elements of a fiction story.  The students have enjoyed comparing the settings from their different reading selections.

Our students were so happy to go on our first field trip to Stan Hywet.  Many of them want to return during the holidays to see the decorations and lights.  While on the trip we learned about the history of the Seiberling family and what their 65 rooms and 70 acres were used for while they were living there. We learned about the famous musicians that played in the music room and the way firewood was moved throughout the house to their many fireplaces.  Our guide introduced us to the kitchen which was just renewed by Armoires de cuisine, and the numerous work-spaces for butlers and maids using kitchen appliances.  Our students wanted to know where they kept their televisions!  Our class explored the grounds independently where we got a close look at the butterflies and different habitats of Akron wildlife.  Although there was a splash fountain in the Playgarden, our favorite part of the grounds was the Japanese Garden. At the time of the service, Adelaide based pest control experts will identify the nature of your problem and the appropriate treatment, eco-friendly/government-approved method we can use. The students walked all of the different paths and found frogs.  We took a picture together on a large rock and on our way out past a fountain.

20160920_120806 20160920_124737

 

Spelling and Enrichments

By Ms. Sara

Some of our students went to the Taekwondo demo where they enjoyed learning a few basic moves and playing some fun games. A few of our students went to the Kids Bop dance demo where they learned a few basic stretches and the beginning moves to a dance. In Art class the students have been working on Mandalas. Mandalas are geometric figures representing the universe. They have really been enjoying this fun and colorful project. In Music class the students have been working on reviewing musical terms and symbols including beat, forte, double bar line, repeat symbol and many more. They have testing their knowledge of these terms with games.

20160909_111045 20160912_141854

In Spelling groups 1 and 2 they have been working on the short vowel sounds. We have gotten through a, o, and i, and this week they are working on u. They have been doing activities in class including rainbow write, word family charts and writing sentences using their spelling words. Next week their homework will no longer be writing their words three times each, they will be bringing rainbow write home instead.

In Spelling group 3 they have been working on the long vowel sounds. They have done a,e,o, and are working on u this week. Their lessons include learning the different letter combinations that make these sounds. They have done activities including definitions, sentences, alphabetical order, word family charts and rainbow write.

Spelling group 4 has been working on long e sounds and all the different letter combinations that make the long e sound. This week they are working on long i. Their activities have included writing paragraphs, definitions, word family charts and alphabetical order.

 


Ms. Kristen’s August/September 2016 Newsletter

I cannot believe we are one month into the school year already! Our returning friends have enjoyed getting back into the “swing of things”, and our new friends have enjoyed learning the routine of our classroom and making new friends!

 

20160908_091245

 

During the first week of school, the children began learning about Grace and Courtesy and learning the ground rules of our classroom. The children learned how to roll and unroll a rug, how to carry a tray, how to place works back in their original place on the shelf, etc. Learning and reviewing these ground rules has set a nice tone in our classroom for the beginning of the year. This also will help promote the child’s sense of organization as they work in the various areas of the classroom.

 

20160831_132511

 

During the second week of school, we learned more about Manners and more about Grace and Courtesy. We learned how to say “Please” and “Thank You”. We also learned how to solve conflict by reading, “There’s a Bird On Your Head” by Moe Williams, and discussing how, when someone is doing something that bothers us or hurts our feelings, we can solve the problem by using our words.

 

20160823_133811

 

In week three, our theme was “All About Me”. The children enjoyed bringing in their baby pictures and guessing who’s baby picture was which. We also charted our hair and eye color on a bar graph. We also talked about our talents and abilities and what makes us unique. We also began learning our Birthdays and practicing our full names. We also discussed or talents and abilities and what makes us unique.

 

20160822_094336

 

During week four, we learned all about Community Helpers. The children were excited to learn about all different types of professions that help people in need. We enjoyed a visit from Bennett’s mother, who is a nurse! She told us what it was like to be a nurse who works in a hospital and we learned how nurses help people everyday. The children also enjoyed learning about other types of community helpers, such as firefighters, paramedics, teachers, veterinarians, or inclusive a board certified plastic surgeon for cosmetic changes. The children also enjoyed making firefighter hats and doctor bags with Ms. Kim during afternoon group time!

 

20160914_101013                  20160914_101024             20160913_131151

 

During the fifth week, we studied apples. The children enjoyed learning the names for all the parts of the apple. We then learned about the life cycle of the apple and we learned that flowers adorn apple trees in the spring, then the apples begin to grow during the summer, and then finally the apples are ready to be harvested in the fall. The children also enjoyed making apple sauce and taste testing different kinds of apples during our afternoon group time.

 

20160823_133917

 

In the final week of September, we learned about all about Friendship. We also discussed what it means to be a friend and how friends are kind and loving towards one another. The children also enjoyed making a book together about how they are a friend to others during our group time. Also, in celebration of the International Week of The Deaf, we also learned some ASL signs to go along with the song “ Make New Friends”.

 

20160919_133856

Academic Enrichment (Kindergarten students | Group lesson with Mr. John)

Let’s travel around the world! This past month we trekked around the world. We learned where, and fun facts about the seven continents. I made sure that out kindergartners knew “Central America” was not a continent, but part of North America. We learned about the cardinal directions including N.E., S.E., N.W,, and NW. My K Kids know where the Equator and Prime Meridian are, and how the divide the Earth into hemispheres.

We took a closer look at North America (because we live there). We identified the bodies of water that surround our continent (Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, Hudson Bay, Gulf of Mexico, and The Great Lakes (H.O.M.E.S). We then learned many fun facts about the state of Ohio and what are Ohio’s surrounding states, their nickname, and their abbreviation. We ended learning about all the places we live. Our galaxy, our solar system, planet, hemisphere, continent, country, state, county, city and out street address.

 

Enrichments (Ms. Kim):

Music

In music this month, students sang hello to Rainbow Sparkles the Dragon, Jerry the Giraffe, Frieda the Frog, and Bernie the Bernard! Ms. Lisa introduced whole, half, quarter, and eighth notes. She had the children use rhythm sticks to practice the beats of each. We used the rhythm sticks to “Ants Go Marching” and “Hot Cross Buns.” The children also got to play castanets, egg shakers, and tambourines throughout the month! Ms. Lisa taught the musical words for loud (forte), soft (piano), legato (smooth), and staccato (jumpy). We even learned a Mexican hat dance!

Science

Our first science experiment involved baking soda, vinegar, and balloons. Each child took a turn shaking baking soda out of a balloon into a bottle of vinegar. When the baking soda mixed with the vinegar, the balloon filled up. We found out that when the baking soda and vinegar mixed, a gas called carbon dioxide was formed which filled up the balloon. Our next science experiment taught us the concept of density. We took two eggs and dropped one in a cup of salt water and one in a cup of water without salt. The children made hypotheses on whether the eggs would sink or float. Each time we tried it, we found that the egg dropped in salt water floated and the egg dropped in water without salt sank. This was because the salt water was more dense than the egg and pushed the egg to the top. Our next experiment on density involved colored water and vegetable oil. We first filled a bottle with colored water. Then we poured vegetable oil on top. The children made hypotheses on what would happen when we shook the bottle. Every time we shook the bottle, the water and oil did not mix. The oil is less dense and will always float back to the top.

Art

Ms. Michele started art this year by teaching the children the colors on the color wheel. She pointed out the primary colors (red, blue, yellow). She then taught the children what monochromatic art was. We learned that it is art made with one color. First the children drew shapes with a black marker. Then they colored in the shapes with one color marker to make it monochromatic. For our next art lesson, the children glued down primary colored construction paper cut-outs to create a house. They then outlined the shapes with strips of black construction paper. In our third art lesson, Ms. Michele taught secondary colors on the color wheel. (orange, purple, green) Then the children drew an item he or she would see in a garden. Then they painted in their drawings with watercolors that they could mix to create secondary colors. For our fourth art lesson, Ms. Michele taught the complimentary colors on the color wheel (orange/blue, purple/yellow, red/green). The children practiced complimentary colors by picking a pair and using these to color in a complimentary monster!

Finally:

In the coming weeks, I would encourage you to take a walk with your child and collect leaves. Ask your child what colors they see. Another fun learning activity at home would be to make a new apple recipe together as a family. Include your child in the preparation, measurements, etc.

Also, on a personal note, I would like to thank Ms. Kim for all her hard work she has put into helping to make our classroom such a wonderful environment,for being such a wonderful teacher, and for being such a wonderful friend to me. I know that her new students will be blessed to have her as their teacher!
Maria Montessori stated that, “ Establishing lasting peace is the work of education; all politics can do is keep us out of war.”. I agree whole heartedly and strive everyday to teach much more than academics in our classroom. Real change in our world begins with our children!

20160923_093851

I consider it a privilege to be a part of your child’s education. I look forward to what this school year has in store!


Ms. Kate’s September 2016 Newsletter

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

20160923_090239  20161003_131334

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

20161004_131831  20160913_092858

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

20160922_130829   20160921_142819

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

20161003_131338  20161004_131825

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

20161003_131401

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

20160921_103525

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

Academic Enrichment (Kindergarten students | Group lesson with Mr. John)

Let’s travel around the world! This past month we trekked around the world. We learned where, and fun facts about the seven continents. I made sure that out kindergartners knew “Central America” was not a continent, but part of North America. We learned about the cardinal directions including N.E., S.E., N.W,, and NW. My K Kids know where the Equator and Prime Meridian are, and how the divide the Earth into hemispheres.

We took a closer look at North America (because we live there). We identified the bodies of water that surround our continent (Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, Hudson Bay, Gulf of Mexico, and The Great Lakes (H.O.M.E.S). We then learned many fun facts about the state of Ohio and what are Ohio’s surrounding states, their nickname, and their abbreviation. We ended learning about all the places we live. Our galaxy, our solar system, planet, hemisphere, continent, country, state, county, city and out street address.


Ms. Kate’s October 2016 Monthly Overview

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

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

09/03: All About Apples

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

Afternoon lessons:

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

10/10: Autumn

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

Afternoon lessons:

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

10/17: Pumpkins

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

Afternoon lessons:

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

10/24: Halloween

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

Afternoon lessons:

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

 

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

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

 

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

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

 

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

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

Ms. Kristen’s October 2016 Monthly Overview

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

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

10/03: Down On The Farm

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

10/10: Pumpkins

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

10/17: Fall

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

10/24: All About Bats/Spiders/Halloween

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


Ms. Courtney’s October 2016 Monthly Overview

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

(In addition to Montessori Work Time)

10/3: Leaves

  • The students will observe the differences in leaf shape.
  • The students will observe the different fall colors and the fun we can have with leaves.
  • The students sort a variety of Fall objects.
  • The students learn different textures and identify them.

10/10: Apples

  • The students will describe an apple using all of their sense.
  • The students will discuss the shapes apples come in.
  • The students will taste test red, green, and yellow apples.
  • The students will explore the inside of an apple.

10/17: Pumpkins

  • The students will identify feeling words such as happy, sad, scared, etc.
  • The students will guess and count how many seeds are in a pumpkin.
  • The students will practice measuring to make a treat.
  • The students will practice team work.

10/24: Bats

  • The students will learn about the life cycle of a bat.
  • The students will research facts about bats.
  • Halloween party (October 28th)

10/31: Body Parts

  • The children will be able to identify specific body parts (Heads, Shoulders, Knees & Toes).
  • The children will start to develop body awareness.

Letters of the week

10/3: Ee
10/10: Ff
10/17: Gg
10/24: Hh
10/31: Ii

Sight word of the week

10/3: But
10/10: Can
10/17: Me
10/24: I
10/31: Go

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

  • Go on a family walk to see how many different kinds of leaves you can find together.
  • Take a trip to an apple orchard.
  • Make homemade applesauce from your child’s favorite apple.
  • Bake pumpkin seeds.
  • Take a trip to a pumpkin patch.
  • Research other nocturnal animals.

October 2016 Academic Enrichment Overview | Tallmadge 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. Throughout the school day in their classroom they are still working individually with Ms. Courtney 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.

10/3: Telling Time

  • Parts of the clock
  • Telling time to the hour
  • Telling time to the half hour
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/10: Telling Time

  • Telling time to the quarter hour (quarter past/ quarter till)
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/17: Telling Time

  • Review telling time to the hour, half and quarter hours
  • Telling time to the minute
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/24: Telling Time to the minute

  • Review previous lessons on telling time
  • Introduction to the minute
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/31: Currency/ Coins

  • Introduction to coins (pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters)
  • Identifying coins and amounts
  • Working with coins and worksheets

Synonyms of the week

10/3: ACTIVE, lively, energetic, dynamic, vigorous, hasty
10/10: CALM, peaceful, quiet, inactive, serene, slow
10/17: HOT, burning, scorching, blazing, boiling, sizzling
10/24: COLD, freezing, chilly, frigid, frozen, cool
10/31: NEW, novel, fresh, original, unique, current, unused

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

Practice telling time on the clock at home. When you sit down to dinner, ask them to tell you what time it is. When they go to bed, have them check the clock. Have fun with Time!


October 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.

 

10/03: Landforms

  • Island/Lake, Isthmus/Straight
  • Bay/Cape, Peninsula/Gulf
  • Archipelago/Chain of Lakes
  • Use of landform cards, and water trays

10/10: Telling Time

  • Parts of the clock
  • Telling time to the hour
  • Telling time to the half hour
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/17: Telling Time

  • Telling time to the quarter hour (quarter past/ quarter till)
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

10/24: Telling Time

  • Review telling time to the hour, half and quarter hours
  • Telling time to the minute
  • Flashcards, Clock & Worksheets

 

Sight Words of the Week:
10/03: you his
10/10: for with
10/17: she were
10/24: use your

 

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

10/03: CALM, peaceful, quiet, inactive, serene, slow
10/10: HOT, burning, scorching, blazing, boiling, sizzling
10/17: COLD, freezing, chilly, frigid, frozen, cool
10/24: NEW, novel, fresh, original, unique, current, unused

 

Things to do at Home this Month:

  • Practice telling time on the clock at home. When you sit down to dinner, ask them to tell you what time it is. When they go to bed, have them check the clock.  Have fun with Time!

 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.

 


Mr. John’s October 2016 Monthly Overview

October 2016

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

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

10/03: Reptiles

  • Introduction to reptiles, examples of reptiles
  • All reptiles are cold blooded, vertebrates (spine)
  • All reptiles have scales, lay eggs with hard shell

10/10: Amphibians

  • Introduction to amphibians, examples of amphibians
  • Amphibians are cold blooded, live on land and water
  • All amphibians have soft, moist skin and are vertebrates (spine)

10/17: Fish

  • Introduction to fish, examples of fish
  • All fish are cold blooded, live in water, most have scales
  • Fish are vertebrates, most have gills and fins

10/24: Birds

  • Introduction to birds, examples of birds
  • All birds have feathers and are warm blooded
  • All birds are vertebrates, lay eggs with shells, have wings
  • Penguins are a birds that can’t fly

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

10/03: Gg
10/10: Hh
10/17: Ii
10/24: Jj

 

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

10/03: BID, did, hid, kid, lid, rid,
10/10: BIT, fit, hit, kit, lit, mit, pit, sit
10/17: BIN, fin, kin, pin, sin, tin, win
10/24: BIP, dip, hip, lip, nip, rip, sip, tip

 

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

  • Look for our words of the week when reading a story, cut out pictures beginning with the letters of the week.
  • Play “I Spy” with items beginning with the letter of the week, or find things around your home that begin with the letter of the week.
  • Go to the Zoo together, and talk about what each animal is? A Bird, A Mammal, Reptile, Amphibian, or Fish.
  • Read a book together about your child’s favorite animal! Is it a Vertebrate or Invertebrate?  What are the babies called?

Explorations of Elementary 2016 – October Overview

Explorations of Elementary 2016 – October Overview

Research

  • All students will be discussing the October, November, and December National Holidays. Second, Third, and Fourth Years will research the history of a National Holiday from one of these months to present to the class.
  • All students will work together to memorize lines and create costumes to put on a play for our younger friends in Ms. Courtney’s room about life in the Archeozoic Ocean.
  • We will take a “Walking Field Trip” to Tallmadge Circle to practice using a compass.
  • All students will begin an in-depth study of North America and the layers of the Earth.
  • First Years will learn more about the states of water during “The Dance of the Molecules,” and the external characteristics of amphibians.
  • Second Years will study how animals satisfy their needs, surface tension, and succulent and dry fruits.
  • Third Years will study types of stamen in flowers and the human skeleton.
  • Math and Language lessons are presented by individual needs instead of grade level.

Reading Groups

  • One of our groups will continue reading selections from our Junior Great Books, one group will be reading stories about responsibility, one group will be continuing The Tale of Despereaux, and one group will be continuing The Indian in the Cupboard.
  • Within reading group, we will introduce or review how to use a dictionary and thesaurus.
  • We will study how to write a paragraph, how to edit a paragraph, the types of ending punctuation, and the types of sentences.

Spelling Rules

  • Student will continue practicing spelling rules within their spelling groups. Students will have short vowel sounds or long vowel sounds and the letter combinations that make them.
  • Spelling homework for all students in the month of October:
    • Rainbow Write – On handwriting paper, write spelling words 3x each using a different color for each letter in the word. Please have your child use colored pencils.

Field Trips and Special Events

  • October 4 – School Picture Day
  • October 25 – Fall Box Tops Collection Deadline
  • October 28 – Halloween Classroom Party – The Elementary party is students only and in the afternoon. Look for my email with the details soon.
  • November 1-4 – Usborne Book Fair