Kindergarten Weekly Note

Dear Kindergarten Families,

It’s been another busy week in kindergarten!  It is hard to believe it is the end of October.  We look forward to seeing you next week for parent/teacher conferences.

Our science studies of squirrels and mice have been a big part of our week.  Kindergarten A continued our research of squirrels by watching some videos of squirrels, observing squirrels in the garden, and reading more nonfiction books.  We culminated our research this week by creating three large tree squirrels in the classroom:  a red squirrel, an Eastern grey squirrel and a flying squirrel.  The children were split into three groups, and each group created a squirrel, all the while discussing different characteristics of each squirrel.  We also created a drey in the top of our loft, and simulated how squirrels move. 

In Kindergarten B we continued our research on mice. We watched some videos to learn how mice crawl, climb, and jump. Nephele’s dad, Stavros, visited our class as an expert.  He is a researcher who works with mice in his lab. Stavros taught us about how mice are helpful to humans and how in return the scientists take good care of mice. He taught us many interesting facts about mice and brought in different materials from his lab. We also learned about mice diets and tried some of their favorite foods of berries, nuts, seeds and wheat. We then graphed our favorite mouse snacks. We also read a nonfiction book about the stages of a mouse’s development and built a timeline with the class. We also finished our first chapter book, A Mouse Call Wolf by Dick King-Smith.

In Language Arts this week, we began our phonics work focusing on specific letters and their accompanying cues, to help prepare the children for sounding out words while reading and writing more comfortably on their own.  This week the focus was on “t, top, /t/,” “f, fun, /f/,” and “b, bat, /b/.”  We also added another page to our Writing Journals, discussing how one can draw multiple pictures on a page to represent one story.

In Seed to Table, children now have Seed to Table Journals.  Children drew pictures of how to help another, based on their conversations last week on the importance of helping others.  They will continue to use these journals throughout the year.

Mathematics this week has focused on numeral writing from 1-9.  It is typical for children in kindergarten to reverse many of their numbers when writing.  With more practice, they will begin to write them conventionally.  We have also continued to work on looking at different combinations of numbers to equal five.  

Spanish continues to be integrated into our days.  We are learning about los colores (colors) and las partes del cuerpo (body parts), including ojos (eyes), orejas (ears), and boca (mouth).  This week the children also focused on Mexican culture as some made guacamole in celebration of Día de Los Muertos.  Others will make guacamole next week.

In Kindergarten B, we have had many conversations organically arise about families. Today Rachel, Melissa and Katie shared their family stories. We ask that your child bring in a photo next week so that s/he can share his/her family story with the class. It is a wonderful way for us to get to know each other better and learn about what makes our families the same and different. 

Questions to ask your child:

  • Which way did you read a book during Read to Self this week?
  • What was your story about that you added to your Writing Journal during Writing Workshop?  

Questions for Kindergarten A:

 

  • What is a drey made of?  How does a squirrel make a drey?
  • How does a squirrel use its tail?
  • Tell me three other things you learned about squirrels.
  • What is happening in Gooseberry Park and the Master Plan?

Questions for Kindergarten B:

  • What was your favorite part of A Mouse Called Wolf?
  • Why do scientists study mice to learn more about how to help people?
  • Why do mice need to eat and gnaw on hard things? 
  • What story do you want to share about our family to the class? 

Enjoy the weekend,

The Kindergarten Team