A Peek At Our Week – Aspen- 3/13/23 – 3/17/23 – Rainbows and The Light Spectrum

This week in Aspen, we dove into the world of color again by exploring rainbows and the light spectrum! The Aspen children investigated why and how rainbows occur; we named the colors within the rainbow, discussed the light spectrum, and engaged in experiments involving bending and refracting light. Each day during group lessons, we took a look at the science of rainbows and the exploration of color. We discovered that rainbows occur when sunlight hits a water droplet. When this happens, some of the light is reflected and refracted creating a rainbow! As we researched this topic, we further discovered that light is made up of different wavelengths and each wavelength is reflected at different angles; therefore, the light spectrum is separated and the result is a rainbow! In order to illustrate this concept while gaining hands on experience, we engaged in an activity refracting light to create our own rainbows using a flashlight and a prism. Aspen also read Pink Is Not a Color and This Book Is Gray by Lindsay Ward. Lindsay Ward a local children’s author from Peninsula, Ohio. The book is hilarious, full of educational information, and encourages kindness and uniqueness. Aspen highly recommends this book, so check it out!!

This week we began or Asia and Oceania studies by having Noah’ s mom, Anum Ali, come in to teach us all about Pakistan. She brought amazing pictures depicting the culture and life in Pakistan, and she brought in many visual aides and items to share as she talked about her culture. Mrs. Ali taught us so much and answered our many, many questions! She even taught us some words! Ask your child about their amazing lesson on Pakistan! A very big thank you to Anum for all of her hardwork and preparation, sharing her knowledge with us, Buckeye, and Cherry Blossom! I also would like to personally thank all of the Aspen parents and children for selecting and submitting their countries for the festival. We have begun our in-class research projects because of this!

This week in Kindergarten lesson, the Kindergarteners began their in-depth lesson with the Function of Words activities, exploring consonants, vowels, and articles. In Readers Workshop, both groups practiced their copy writing skills, fluency, and handwriting with reading comprehension books/worksheets. They practiced finding information within a text while answering comprehension questions. We also practiced writing in complete sentences when answering comprehension questions. Both groups also took a quick look at rhyme, alliteration, hyperbole, and onamatapeoia to explore poetry condepts. In Writers Workshop, both groups practiced writing poetry as a group (picture below).

Matching Uppercase and Lowercase letters!

Learning how to find information in books. Practicing our research skills researching life in our Asian country!

Guiding and helping our friends during the work period! The combined age groups of a Montessori classroom provides opportunities for children to exercise independence while assuming leadership roles guiding younger peers.

Skip Counting with the Cube Chain!

Kindergarten Poetry Fun!!

A Peek At Our Week – Aspen – 02/27/23 – 03/03/23 Dr. Seuss Week!!

This week in Aspen it was all about rhyming, word play, and having fun exploring the literary world with Dr. Seuss Week! As we dove into the literary world, we explored rhyming, alliteration, and vocabulary! Aspen learned that in order for a word to rhyme, they need to have the same ending sounds! After learning this, we all practiced rhyming words during our group lessons. The Aspen children quickly became rhyming experts! We discovered that sometimes rhyming words are not spelled the same but have the same ending sounds! For example, dance and pants follow this rule. At the same time, we also read various Dr. Seuss books, discovering that he is the true Rhyming Expert. We spent the week searching for rhyming words and alliteration; in the process, we made an interesting discovery! We realized that occasionally Dr. Seuss would create nonsense words! This prompted follow-up work with vocabulary and thinking of words that make sense (real words) and words that don’t (nonesense words)! Dr. Seuss also happens to be a Nonsense Word Expert!

A very special thank you to all of the Aspen families participating in Dr. Seuss Week! The outfits, creativity, and participation was amazing! We could not do what we do without you!

In Kindergarten Workshop, the kindergarteners explored Geometry! They looked at two-dimensional shapes with the Geometric Cabinet and three-dimensional shapes with the Geometric Solids. At the same time, the Kindergarteners discussed angles, vertices, and the geometric names of triangles. In Readers Workshop, the kindergarteners began their introduction into the world of poetry and began the process of becoming poets themselves! We took a look at poems that rhyme, reading Shel Silverstein’s “Where The Sidewalk Ends” and Dr. Seuss books. We discussed how poems are written in rows or lines and how there are different types of poems. The Kindergarten Reading groups also discussed alliteration, and we practiced this concept together. Finally, both groups discussed how to brainstorm: to think of ideas to create their own poems. The kindergarteners wrote word lists and then found their rhyming words so that they can create their very own rhyming poem! All of the kindergarteners had amazing ideas! In Writers Workshop, the Kindergarteners practiced their handwriting skills by “copy writing” information off a white-board, practicing for Elementary expectations!

It was another fun- filled, amazing week in Aspen! Have a great weekend! Next week our thematic topic will be Amphibians and Reptiles!

Here are some of our Crazy Socks from Crazy Sock Day!

Dr. Seuss Letter Rescue! Rescuing letters from the tangled web and matching them to lowercase and uppercase cards!

A group picture of our outfits representing our future goals of what we would like to be when we grow up.

Creating sentences with the Moveable Alphabet!

Pin pricking shamrock shapes!

Story time with good friends!!

Fun with the Sandpaper Numbers!

A Peek At Our Week – Aspen – 02/13/23 – 02/17/23 and 02/20/23 – 02/24/23 – South America and Presidents Day and North America.

For the past couple of weeks Aspen has been exploring the Western Hemisphere! We started this adventure by traveling to South America! We learned the names and locations of countries in South America, explored culture, studied the geography of South America, became Amazon Rainforest experts, and listened to relaxing South American pan flute music during the work period. As we discussed South America, we explored the topography and different biomes found within the continent. We learned that South America has humid rainforests, tall mountains, and dry deserts. We further discovered that parts of South America are very close to the Equator and are very hot while others are cold and dry. Did you know that part of Antarctic belongs to Chile? As we explored culture, we learned that Carnival, a huge celebration, was happening the same week we were studying South America! The Aspen kids spent the week completing the South American puzzle maps, coloring the countries in South America, learning how to identify South American flags, and engaged in classification work with animals and life within the continent of South America.

This week the Aspen classroom learned all about Presidents Day and the presidents of the United States. We learned all about the work a president does, explored U.S. landmarks, and engaged in classification work with identifying Presidents and placing them in linear sequence according to their Presidential terms. As we were discussing the United States of America and Presidents, Aspen decided to investigate other countries within the continent of North America. We then engaged in classification work with the flags of North America, learned all about the topography of North America and its different biomes, and learned all about North American culture while learning the names and locations of its countries. Aspen sure had a busy two weeks exploring the Western Hemisphere.

In Kindergarten Workshop, the kindergarteners have been exploring Fractions and Math with Fractions. They experimented with putting different fractions together to make a whole and learned how to identify different fractions. In Reading Workshop, both groups have been reviewing lessons focusing on phonics, phonemic awareness and phonograms. At the same time, the have worked on Reading Comprehension skills, sounding out words and then writing them on paper, and practiced how to S.A.N.D our worksheets and papers with subject, name, and date. In Writers Workshop, the Kindergarteners finished up their books and then held Authors Share where they published their books and then read them aloud to their classmates! Each kindergartner has shown so much growth writing their books! They completed entire words and put their whole thought down on paper while using punctuation and capital letters at the beginning of each sentence!

Putting the Presidents in chronological order by their presidential term(s)!

Fun with phonics and the Snowman Phonetic Object Box!

Cleaning pennies with salt and vinegar!

Working together to complete the Alphabetical Order puzzle!

A Peek At Our Week – Aspen – 01/16/23-01/20/23 And 01/23/23 – 01/27/23

The past couple of weeks, Aspen has been learning all about the Arctic and Antarctic while exploring the concepts of adaptation, hibernation, and migration! We have made many interesting discoveries and learned some really amazing facts! Last week we explored the North and South Poles, focusing on their location, similarities and differences between the North and South Poles, and wildlife inhabiting these biomes. We discussed the Arctic and Antarctic ecosystems and learned how the animals living there have adapted to living in a harsh environment with temperatures below freezing. We learned all about blubber and the specialized feathers penguins have (they fit together keeping water out like a wetsuit, keeping the penguins skin dry). At the same time, we discovered an interesting fun fact: did you know that the polar bear’s skin is black and its fur is actually translucent? Their fur only appears white because it reflects the visible light. Your child is now an Arctic and Antarctic expert!

This week Aspen discussed the concepts of adaptation, hibernation, and migration. We discovered that animals are absolutely amazing and have developed interesting ways to survive the cold harsh winters. We took a look at what adaptations animals make, which animals hibernate, and how animals migrate and where they migrate to! We also took the opportunity to look at the different footprints animals leave. We can often observe these footprints in the snow this time of year! It has been a fun two weeks in the Aspen Room

The kindergarteners have focused on Multiplication (last week) and Subtraction (this week). They have learned the mathematical terms multiplicand, multiplier, and product (multiplication) and the terms minuend, subtrahend, and difference (subtraction). After learning the proper terminology, the kindergarteners practiced multiplying and subtracting with the Stamp Game! In Reader’s Workshop the Cardinals have focused on phonograms, received phonogram reading lists, and practiced their reading comprehension skills by reading short story paragraphs containing phonograms. They then answered questions on a worksheet for follow up work. The Chickadees received a new phonetic reader, practiced reading comprehension with high frequency words while engaging in follow-up activities relating to their phonetic readers. The Chickadees have also focused on the ending sounds in phonetic words. A good “Sound Detective” looks at each sound in a word! We practiced not getting tricked by words with similar sounds! In Writers Workshop, the Cardinals have focused on transition words for the beginning of a book, such as one day, one time, or everyday when writing their individual books. The Chickadees have focused on Word Wall words: went, and, the, and for. We also worked on stretching out their words (sounding them out, and completing the whole word). They also focused on writing a full sentences! Our Kindergarteners have worked so hard and have made amazing progress in both Readers and Writers Workshop!

Next week our thematic topic will be the Five Senses. We will explore how we use our senses through various follow-up activities and apply them during the classroom work period. Aspen will also discuss Groundhog Day while engaging in groundhog related fun!

Fun with the South America Puzzle Map.

Tracing Fun with our Puzzle Maps. These awesome ladies recreated our Continent Puzzle Map!

More continent tracing fun! They even added the Equator after this photo was taken.

Classification work with the Life Cycle of a Penguin!

Phonetic Object Box fun with CVC words!

Cylinder Block Extensions for Sensorial fun! All four blocks!!

A Peek At Our Week- Aspen- 01/02/23- 01/06/23 – Snowflakes and the States Of Matter!

Welcome back Aspen families!! We hope you had an amazing winter vacation full of fun and relaxation! Ms. Lindsey and I were so happy to see everyone this week! We missed all of you! The Aspen children seemed happy to return to school and their daily classroom activities! The classroom was bustling with academic energy, enthusiasm, and smiles as everyone missed their friends and favorite activities! This week our topic was Snow and Snowflakes! Before we could investigate Snowflakes, we had to discuss the States of Matter; therefore, Aspen learned all about Solids, Liquids, and Gases. We learned that things/objects are made up of matter and matter is made up of small particles called Molecules. We further learned that Molecules behave differently in different States Of Matter! For example, the Molecules in a solid are arranged tightly packed close together allowing Solids to hold their shape. The Molecules in a liquid are packed close together but not tightly; therefore, liquids are free flowing and change shape depending on the container the occupy. The Molecules in a Gas are moving rapidly in all directions and are not packed close together. A Gas does not have a defined shape and we cannot typically see them! After discussing the above, we engaged in a follow up Practical Life Solid, Liquid, and Gas activity. The Aspen students got to use beads pretending they were Molecules and arranged them tightly, free flowing, or bouncing all over the place (this activity is pictured below). After learning about Molecules it was time to talk snow! What is Snow? How Does it form? The Aspen students are now snow experts! They learned that snow is frozen ice crystals made up of water, discovering ice is the solid form of water! Water is a liquid, and when it freezes it becomes ice! Aspen then asked the question can water be a gas? We further discovered that water can be a gas called water vapor, and there is something called a Water Cycle. The Water Cycle and temperature play a role in the formation of snow! Aspen then had to research the Water Cycle and made the realization that clouds are condensed Water Vapor and when the water vapor condenses and becomes too heavy the cloud releases the water in a liquid state. We call this liquid state rain; however, if the temperature is cold enough the liquid will turn to ice crystals and the ice crystals will stick to pollen or dust in our atmosphere. They will then form larger crystals by combining together to create a snowflake! It was at this point that Aspen realized that when we catch snowflakes on our tongue to eat, we are actually eating dust or pollen! Wow! It was a very busy week in Aspen!! To illustrate the Water Cycle, we read the book The Drop Goes Plop by Sam Godwin and then did a very special “Make It Rain” science experiment using water, shaving cream, and food coloring. Ask your child about their busy week in Aspen!

In Kindergarten Workshop, the kindergarteners explored the concept of Multiplication using the Multiplication Bead Bars. They practiced combining multiples of a number while visually experiencing this process through the manipulation of numbered beads. In Readers Workshop, the Cardinals focused on reviewing phonograms they learned prior to Winter Vacation and then learned two new phonograms: ou and ow. Cardinals then engaged in follow-up work with ou and ow. They played “What’s The Word” and “Name that Phonogram ” where we took turns figuring out how to read various words and then located phonograms within them. The Chickadees reviewed phonics and then focused on the ending sounds within a word. The Chickadees then played “What’s the Word ” by changing only the ending sounds of phonetic words. They also reviewed the sh and th phonograms! In Writers Workshop the Cardinals focused on handwriting skills of cursive lowercase letters and Chickadees focused on vowels, vowel sounds, and how to write them.

For the week of January 9, 2023 our thematic lesson for the week will be Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, and diversity. We will also explore concepts regarding this topic by doing our Rosa Parks play during line time.

Fun with the PinkTower and Brown Stair Extensions!

Solid, Liquid, Gas Practical Life activity!

Focusing and concentrating to make sure no drops are spilled with the eyedropper activity!

Exploring the Knobless Cylinder Extensions!

A Peek At Our Week: 11/28/22-12/02/22 and 12/05/22- 12/09/22- Holiday Program Rehearsal, Stage Ettiquette , and Holiday Fun!

The past two weeks in Aspen have been full of fun, holiday cheer, and preparation for our Holiday program this coming week. The Aspen children have been busy practicing their songs and choreography for our upcoming show! They have worked hard and continue to amaze us with their ability to learn their songs so quickly. The majority of our morning group lessons have centered around practicing our songs while practicing proper stage etiquette. We also discussed vocabulary words within the songs we will be singing. For example, did you know that figgy pudding isn’t actually pudding? It is a vague term for traditional sweet and savory cakes. It typically contains a creamy layer of honey, fruit, and nuts. In fact, in England, they often call desserts pudding! The Aspen parents are in for such a special treat this coming Friday. We can’t wait to perform for you!

In Kindergarten Workshop, the kindergarteners have been practicing a top secret ASL song surprise! They are eager to share this with all of you this Friday! They have also explored addition concepts and how to add large numbers, working with the hundreds, tens, and units in our Place Value system with the Golden Beads and Stamp Game. In Readers Workshop, the Cardinals have continued to explore sentence structure, focusing on the subject and the predicate within a sentence. Cardinals then symbolized sentences and explored how having these two parts of speech in a sentence gives structure to our sentences while helping them complete their entire thought! We practiced creating our own sentences while writing them on the lines. The Cardinals also focused on leaving spaces between their words, and they also engaged in follow up worksheets reading sentences and finding the missing words. They helped the sentences make sense! The Chickadees continued their lessons on phonics, worked on sight words, learned two new sight words, and received a new reader. We read the reader aloud during Readers Workshop together. The Chickadees then completed follow up work focusing on comprehension skills from their new Reader. In Writers Workshop, both groups continued to work on their books, focusing on handwriting skills, completing sentences, and finishing their whole thought (making sense of sentences)!

Many parents have had questions regarding our Holiday Program this week. I am inserting a link that will either serve as a reminder or answer any questions you may have. If you have further inquiries feel free to ask us in person as well! Here is the link!


Upcoming Events:

Holiday Program Rehearsal- Wednesday, December 14, 2022 at 5:45 pm (please have your child use the restroom before dropping them of in their designated area).

Aspen Pajama Day – Friday, December 16, 2022. (Your child is permitted to wear their Holiday P.J’s)

Aspen Sharing Day(s) – Thursday, December 15 and Friday, December 16. (Your child is permitted to bring in a special item from home to share with their friends! ( Please do not send toy weapons).

Holiday Program- Friday, December 16, 2022 at 5:30 pm. (Please have your child use the restroom before dropping them off in their designated area).

In regards, to P.J./Sharing Day, all students attending school on Friday are permitted to wear school appropriate Holiday pajamas to school. We will have Sharing during group lesson time and afterwards we will then engage in some Holiday Fun. We will have board games, coloring fun, a Maker Station, and a Holiday Movie during the afternoon.

Gingerbread Gumdrop Addition!

Using pipe cleaners to create Candy Canes!

Decorating a Christmas Tree!

Following patterns to create snowflakes!

Snowman phonics!! Matching three letter word clue hats to their corresponding snowman!

A Peek At Our Week- Aspen- 11/14/22 – 11/18/22 – North America – Pilgrims, Native Americans, and Thanksgiving!

This week in Aspen we began our lessons involving the continent of North America, focusing on the history of Thanksgiving! Aspen learned all about a group of people known as the Pilgrims. We discovered that the Pilgrims once lived in England, and they decided to leave because they held different beliefs than the king of England. Aspen also learned that a king has absolute power! You didn’t argue with the king of England in the 1600’s! We then researched how the Pilgrims traveled to North America, also known as the “New World” in the1600’s. We discovered that they traveled by boat (The Mayflower), and it took sixty-six days before they arrived in Massachusetts! Aspen also learned that when the Pilgrims arrived in the New World they did not find an Acme, a Giant Eagle, or homes ready to move into. The Pilgrims had to hunt for their own food, grow their own crops, and build their own houses from scratch! They couldn’t even purchase wood for their homes at a Home Depot! We further discovered life was harsh and full of hard work for the Pilgrims. Even the Pilgrim children had to work! We then watched a quick video on YouTube about Pilgrim life! We then found out that arriving in a New World brought uncertainty, and growing food or hunting was very difficult. Thankfully, there was a group of people already living near Plymouth, Massachusetts called the Wampanoag! They helped guide the Pilgrims so that they could survive in the New World. After harvest time, the Pilgrims and Wampanoag people gathered together to celebrate and give thanks for the harvest and everything else that they were thankful for! As a group, we then discussed all of the things we are thankful for in our own lives. Check out the bulletin board outside our room to see what our Aspen group gave thanks for!

In Kindergarten Workshop, the kindergarten students began their lessons involving currency. They took a look at different types of currency from around the world, and they learned all about the coins we use in the U.S.A. They then practiced identifying coins with their corresponding amounts. In Readers Workshop, the Cardinals and Chickadees learned how to identify the subject and predicate within a sentence. We learned that the subject is….. and the predicate is…. We then read sentences out loud and located both the subject and predicate within our sentences, practicing our sentence structure and how to form a sentence that makes sense. Then we practiced determining if a sentence made sense by investigating some sample sentences. Being the amazing children they are, the kindergarteners also located sight words within our sample sentences. In Writers Workshop, our kindergarteners focused on putting their entire thought on a paper, creating sentences that make sense.

Next week we will be continuing to talk about North America but we will also be learning about table manners, place setting, and discussing more about what it means to be thankful. Also, as a reminder, there is no school on Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday in observance of Thanksgiving.

Learning how to use a baster.

Planting corn like the Native Americans using soil (black river rocks), corn, and fish (Swedish Fish).

Fun with the Geography Puzzle Maps!!

Whisking bubbles is a great indirect preparation for coloring and staying within the lines! You whisk too fast you spill the water! You color to fast , you go out of the lines!!

A Peek At Our Week- Aspen- 10/24/22-10/28/22 – Bats, Cats, and More!!

This week in Aspen it was more Halloween themed fun! We utilized the upcoming holiday as an opportunity to learn all about Bats and Cats! We spent the week discovering so many interesting and fun facts while practicing our research skills! Ask your child what the word research means. During group lessons we learned that bats are not that spooky and are actually quite fascinating and unique creatures. Did you know….that bats are not birds even though they fly? Did you know that they are mammals?? Aspen learned this amazing fact and more! We took a deeper look at what characteristics qualify a living organism to be classified as a mammal. We then discovered that cats are also mammals and also discovered that the word cat rhymes with bat!! Thus, we dove into many activities involving rhyming fun!!

In Kindergarten Workshop, the kindergarteners began their introductory lessons on telling time on an analog clock! They spent the week skip counting by fives and practicing the necessary skills for telling time! They sure have been helping to keep us on schedule! In Readers Workshop, the Cardinals continued to focus on the sequence of events within a story and comprehension skills. We read Give Me Back My Bones and discussed what events took place within the story, focusing on when (the order) and how the events happened. We also spotted sight words and rhyming words within the story. The Cardinals also received another beginning reader book to practice these skills independently. The Chickadees continued phonics practice, decoding words with some phonics games with rhyming fun! We incorporated the games from previous weeks into one Mega Phonics Game! The Chickadees also read Give Me Back My Bones, and we also discussed the order and sequence of events within a story. We then practiced creating our own mini story with our own sequence of events. The Chickadees also learned a few new sight words! In Writers Workshop, the kindergarteners continued to explore what it takes to be a writer while practicing their best handwriting skills!

We also had our Halloween classroom party and Trunk Or Treat! All of the cars were decorated so creatively! Thank you for making our Halloween so special and fun! Another special thank you to our parent volunteers helping out! You are all amazing!

Work with the Knobless Cylinders- development of fine motor skills, hand eye coordination, and the visual discrimination of dimension.

Skip counting by six! Mathematical fun exploring the linear sequence of numbers!

Painting Spider Webs as one of our Halloween party activities!

Cookie decorating fun!!

Halloween sensory bin fun!! We played I Spy finding spooky objects!!

A Peek At Our Week- 10/17/22-10/21/22- Skeletons Are Skele-Fun!!

This week in Aspen, we learned all about our Skeletal System! The Aspen children studied the locations and the names of the bones in the human body. While learning the scientific names of our bones, we discovered many interesting fun facts! For instance, do you know where the largest bone in the human body is located? What about the location of the smallest bone in the human body? Ask your child, they are now Skeletal System experts! In class Aspen also engaged in a variety of skeletal Practical Life activities, scientific exploration, and reading classification work. Aspen spent the week labeling the parts of a human skeleton, comparing and contrasting different types of animal skeletons (plastic), and researching skeletal facts. We also had a visit from Mr. Bob Bones, our Skeletal System mascot! He spent the week working, researching, and teaching Aspen all about the skeletal system! It was Skele-Fun!!

This week in Kindergarten lesson, the kindergarteners learned all about insects, arachnids, and the parts of a leaf and a tree. They spent the week learning the names of the different parts while comparing and contrasting their charicteristics. In Readers Workshop, the Cardinals read the book Llama, Llama, Red Pajama and found rhyming words or sight words! They also practiced writing phonetic words from memory. Focusing on phonics and the skills they have acquired in Writers Workshop! We also studied the concept of sequencing and what comes next within the story The Little Red Hen. We also discussed words with “e” at the end or the “magic e”! The Chickadees focused on phonics and practiced their skills while utilizing their knowledge individually. We played the “Pick It, Say It” game! Chickadees picked a number out of a pumpkin and then read phonetic words from a column of their chosen number. Chickadees demonstrated amazing decoding skills and exhibited confidence while sounding out their words. One row even contained challenging “sh” phonograms! The Chickadees also read the book Llama Llama Red Pajama. In Writers Workshop the kindergarteners worked on their true stories. They learned that true stories tell who the story is about, where the story happened and what happened within the story.

Next week our topics will also be Halloween themed! We will be learning all about Bats and Cats while discussing Mammals!! Next week we will also have our Halloween celebration and Trunk or Treat on Friday! There will be more information sent out regarding our in class celebration next week! Have a great weekend!

Hammering golf tees into a pumpkin!

Using a sieve to scoop ping pong eyeballs out of a spooky pumpkin.

Using the tweezers to transfer bones!! “Bonus Challenge Time” -self discovered variation balancing bones using a bone to transfer other bones from one bowl to the other!

Mr. Bob Bones stopped by to teach us about our Skeletal System! He stayed and tried some of our Halloween themed activities!

Reading a good book with good friends!

More tweezer transferring fun!

Observing skeletons to compare and contrast differences and similarities!

Labeling the bones of our Skeletal System.

Getting ready for Cosmic Kids skeleton yoga with Mr. Bones!

A Peek At Our Week- Aspen- 10/03/22-10/07/22- and 10/10/22-10/14/22 Pumpkins/ Living and Non-Living!!!

My apologies Aspen families; we have had quite the cold making it’s round through the Aspen Classroom, and I got behind on blog postings. Therefore, this week’s blog will contain two weeks worth of Aspen Room fun! Our thematic topics were Pumpkins and Living or Non-living, and we had so much fun exploring both of these units! Here goes our blog(s)!!

The week of 10/03/22, Aspen learned all about Pumpkins! We explored the life cycle of a pumpkin, discussed the parts of a pumpkin, and then reviewed fractions and took a look inside a pumpkin. The Aspen children used all of their senses (except for taste) to explore and observe a pumpkin up close! At the same time, we practiced our estimation skills by guessing how many seeds were inside our small and large Pumpkins. All of the children had some great guesses! In order to check our estimated guesses we spent the week gooping out our pumpkins and then sorted the seeds from the pulp! We definitely discovered our larger pumpkin contained a greater amount of seeds; however, we have not arrived at a number as we are STILL counting pumpkin seeds! During the work period, the Aspen students engaged in a variety of pumpkin themed follow up work, such as pouring pumpkin seeds, spooning pumpkins, washing a pumpkin, sequencing the stages of a pumpkin life cycle, and exploring a Halloween themed classification activity. We also sang some pumpkin themed songs together!

During the week of 10/03/22, Aspen also had their ASL (American Sign Language) lesson with Ms. Lauren! We learned how to sing the Hello Song in sign language. We also learned how to sign No, Yes, Thank You, and how to sign some of our favorite animals! We had so much fun! Ask your child about their ASL lesson! They learned their signs so quickly that we impressed Ms. Lauren!

In Kindergarten during the week of 10/03/22 , the Aspen children learned all about land and water forms. They learned how to identify, name, and define island, lake, cape, bay, peninsula, gulf, strait, and isthmus. The kindergarten students also engaged in a variety of follow-up work where they practiced what they learned during lessons. For example, the Aspen students were given a presentation on how to use the land and water forms in class so that they could use water to create an island and a lake, gaining hands on experience with geographical definitions. In Readers Workshop the kindergarten students continued to explore the rules of the English language. The Cardinals reviewed their sight words (puzzle words), read liteary passages to find and circle sight words, reviewed number words, and then they used their knowledge to complete a pumpkin life cycle booklet. With these booklets, they had to read and then color the pictures the color specified in the text. Cardinals also discussed the concept of letters that create blends and learned new phonograms. The Chickadees reviewed decoding skills and then played the “Guess It, Write It” game! We had a basket of objects and each child got to choose an object . We then said the name of each object, sounded it out (decoded it), and then wrote it on a dry erase board! They were super sleuths! I couldn’t trick them at all! I am so proud of both groups and all the progress they are making! During Writers Workshop, the kindergarteners shared the books they have spent the past few weeks creating and then read them to their classmates!

This week (10/10/22 -10/14/22) our thematic topic was Living and Non-Living. The Aspen children have been discussing all of the spooky Halloween decorations they either have at home or have seen throughout their neighborhood. Some of the children expressed that some decorations were so scary that they were afraid! As a result, we decided to determine just how scary these decorations actually are. We learned what characteristics classified a living Organism or a non-living thing! Aspen’s overall assessment was that the Halloween decorations were non-living; they do not eat or drink, produce waste, have movement, respond to stimuli, develop and grow, reproduce, or breathe (respiration). Therefore, they are not as scary as we originally thought! They are fake replicas and are non-living things! After learning the above, we tried classifying objects and pictures by categorizing them into two groups, living or non-living! We had so much fun determining how to classify things into these groups. We had many laughs trying to apply living characteristics to non-living objects.

During kindergarten lesson this week the kindergarteners explored the five animal kingdoms: mammals, birds, reptiles, fish, and amphibians. As they discovered the characteristics of each group, they also learned how to label the parts of an animal in each of these groups (horse, bird, turtle, fish, and frog). In Readers Workshop the Cardinals played the “Change It, Say It ” with phonograms, reviewed sight words from previous weeks, learned new sight words, and received a reader for their Book Buddy Bags! While reading the book together in Reading Group, we found our new sight words/high frequency words in the text, and began reading comprehension work and sequencing. The Chickadee Group continued their exploration of phonics with the “Guess It, Write It ” game and worked on activities in their Book Buddy Bags. In Writers Workshop the kindergarteners continued to explore literary concepts, brainstorming ideas , and refined their handwriting skills!

Next week our thematic topic is Skeletal System! We will learn how to name the bones in our body and will discover why having a skeleton is so important!

Scrubbing Pumpkins!

Using tongs to transfer pumpkins.

Using tweezers to sort and count pumpkin seeds.

Practical Life fun pouring from cup to cup!

Sorting objects into two categories, living or non-living!