Kindergarten Weekly Note

Dear Kindergarten Families,

Since there are only two days of school next week, this note will tell you about this week and next.

Much of this week was spent representing our hedgehog and beaver knowledge in preparation for presenting to the other kindergarten class. Children practiced how to share these representations with one another, using a loud speaking voice and making eye contact with the audience. We talked about feelings around presenting -- how some children may be feeling excited, while others are feeling nervous, and still others are feeling mixed emotions -- and how all of those feelings are normal. Students were introduced to the idea of confidence and how to talk oneself into feeling more confident. Many children shared they were nervous before presenting and felt confident about the presentation once it was completed. Our hope is that at the conclusion of these studies the students recognize they have strategies to research any topic in which they are interested.

On Monday morning, James Ihde, a ballet dancer for the Pennsylvania Ballet, came to talk with us about his job. We learned about how his interest in ballet began and some obstacles he overcame as a male dancer. He discussed dancing in different roles, both male and female (he was an evil stepsister in the recent production of Cinderella). He also talked with us about how he feels nervous before every performance, and how that nervousness energizes him to do a good job. Feeling nervous means you really care about doing a good job. Our students referred to James as they discussed their own feelings around presenting.

Next week we will celebrate Thanksgiving with the whole school at our annual Thanksgiving Feast, where we sit together in Family Circles and enjoy lunch. If your child is not planning to attend school next Tuesday, please let us know. You do not need to send your child with lunch next Tuesday. Each school unit makes something to share with the rest of the school. Kindergarten has harvested some veggies from our garden, and we will spend time on Monday adding them to other vegetables as we make salad for the entire school. The Primary Unit makes corn bread, the Junior Unit makes dessert, and the Middle School makes TPS’s traditional Thanksgiving lasagna. It is a lovely way to celebrate all we are grateful for at TPS.

Questions to ask/Activities to do with your child this week:

  • What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?
  • How did you feel about presenting your hedgehog/beaver information?
  • Can you teach me the “Damos Gracias” song? What does it mean?
  • Write a list of all that you are grateful for as a family.

Next week have your child share his/her hedgehog/beaver documentation book with you. Perhaps s/he can answer the list of questions the children generated at the beginning of the study.

We hope you have a restful, joyful Thanksgiving. One of the many things we are grateful for this year is the opportunity to work with your children at TPS.

Warmly,

The Kindergarten Team