Kindergarten Weekly Note

Dear Kindergarten Families,

First, some administrative business: If your child is “pick up” in the Garden at the end of the school day, please be sure to check out with the kindergarten teacher on duty and dismiss from the South Street exit, not the 25th Street exit. This will help us be sure we know every child is safe and with the correct adult.  Thank you!

The children and teachers were happy to get back together this week after Spring Break.  One of the first things students were asking upon their return was, “What are we studying now?!”  Early this week we introduced our new project to much excitement - How to put on a play!  We chose this study for a number of reasons:  putting on a play requires a lot of cooperation, and learning how to function well together and collaborate are important kindergarten (and life) skills that require thoughtful negotiation and flexibility.  The children were also excited to see the 8th grade perform Midsummer Night’s Dream last month and go to the Arden Theater in the winter to see the Frog and Toad play.  So far, we have discussed our previous experiences and understandings about plays.  Over the next months, we will delve deeply into researching and learning about all of the many elements required to put on a successful show.  One more calendar item:  Thursday, June 1, will be our Kindergarten Plays and Learning Celebration at 9:00 a.m.   Please join us in The Garage for a star-studded affair, as both kindergarten classes entertain you.  Following the plays, we will go into the kindergarten classrooms for a cast party/Learning Celebration as your child shows you all that we have been learning about theaters, acting, and how to put on a play.  The Celebration will end around 10:30 a.m.

If you are an “expert” about anything related to putting on a play (acting, costume design, directing,  lighting, make-up, etc.) and are willing to come chat with our class about your expertise, please email your child’s teachers to set up a time for you to visit.  Next Thursday we will be visiting the Old Academy Players Community Theater in East Falls to help our research. 

We returned to our regular routines of Writing Workshop where we added the word “of” to our word wall.  We are also beginning to focus on the short vowel sounds, starting with the “a” sound as in “cat.”  

April began a new calendar pattern that has to do with coins.  We are looking carefully at pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters, and are talking about their corresponding values.  

Seed to Table classes are making full use of the Garden as the focus becomes the science of plants.  Many sprouts and flowers are coming up from seeds, seedlings, and bulbs planted by our kindergartners.   Each child drew observations s/he made about changes s/he noticed in the garden after going on a silent Garden tour to see, smell, and taste all that’s new.  

Today we went back to The Schuylkill Center.  It was fun, albeit a little wet and cool.  We reacquainted ourselves with our “homebase” area called Weil House, where children built forts out of branches, walked on log balance beams, dug for worms and other creatures, and had a wonderful time exploring nature.  

We are looking for Spanish-speaking volunteers for our student-only Spanish learning celebration, our Mercado, on Thursday, May 25, from 12:30-3:00 p.m.  If you are interested in helping or learning more, please email Brian (bjordan@tpschool.org) or Melissa (mroldan-stills@tpschool.org).  Thank you!

Some items for your calendar:

Friday, April 21 - No School for students due to a teacher professional development day.  Special ASEP programming is available.  

Thursday, April 27 - 5:00-6:00 p.m. - Move Up Night for parents of next year’s first graders (Believe it or not, that’s you!). Come meet the Primary Unit (first and second grade teachers) and learn about what to expect for your child as they enter first grade.

Friday, June 1, 9:00-10:30 a.m.  - Kindergarten Plays and Learning Celebration

Questions to ask/Activities to do with your child:

  • How do you feel about studying how to put on a play?  
  • Who were you kind to this week?
  • Who was kind to you?
  • What are coins for?  
  • Discuss any plays or performances you may have seen together.  What do you think the jobs might have been to make that play happen?  How did people have to cooperate to make the play work?
  • Write notes or letters to your child for him to read with you.  Suggest s/he write back.  S/he might want to write notes to other friends or relatives. 

Have a great weekend,

The Kindergarten Team