Kindergarten Weekly Note 6/3/16

Dear Kindergarten Families,

Some exciting news - Kindergarten teacher, Katie Miller and TPS 8th grade math teacher, Ethan Tannen got engaged last weekend! Congrats to them, we are so excited for their new adventures together!

Thanks for coming to our Learning Celebration yesterday. The children were proud to perform for you, and to show you their classrooms. Thanks for your support, and thanks to those parents who organized and provided treats for the “cast party.”

This week was filled with preparations for yesterday’s festivities. On Tuesday we performed for one another in our “Garage” for the first time. On Wednesday we had our dress rehearsal in front on an adoring audience comprised of our Book Buddies and the Preschool. Our “putting on a play” project helps children embrace many ideas that we hope will follow them into adulthood. We hope they will learn to persevere through feeling nervous, to recognize that mistakes are part of a process, that practicing a skill can help one improve, and that being flexible, listening and being cooperative are essential when working and creating with a group.

We are continuing to write in our journals, which you will receive next week, along with lots of other work. We ask that you please send your child to school with a bag next week labeled with your child’s name to help carry home the many items that will make their way back to you next Friday - our last full day of school.

This week had a few kindergarten “lasts.” Today was our last “Family Circle” activity. The students said good-bye to their 8th grade family group leaders, and had a photo taken with the graduates. Today was supposed to be our last day at The Schuylkill Center, but the weather didn’t cooperate. We spent time talking about our favorite memories from The Schuylkill Center and doing other fun activities in the classroom.

To be super clear, “Move-Up Day,” is for students only. This Monday, June 6 is “Move-Up Day.” For the period before lunch and lunchtime, the kindergartners spend time in the Primary Unit (first and second grade classrooms). Each of our groups will be in a different Primary classroom. The classroom your child visits may or may not be where s/he is placed for next year. You will get these assignments at the end of the summer. “Move Up Day” is a fun way to ease the transition into a new grade for next year and to help familiarize the students with some of next year’s students, spaces and teachers. The kindergartners wrote a book for us to read to the preschoolers that visit us on “Move Up Day” about what there is to look forward to in kindergarten.

Friday, June 10 is Graduation Day and the last day of school. Dismissal is at 11:30 a.m. There is no ASEP program that day. Your children will meet you in the garden at 11:30 a.m. Every class participates in graduation in some capacity. Kindergarten sings “Make New Friends” with the graduates at the conclusion of the event, but spends most of our day in our classrooms. It is amazing and wonderful to hear how many of the graduates remember singing to the “big eighth graders” when they were in kindergarten. We ask that your child “dress up” a bit for the celebration.

With all the talk about endings and summer approaching, inevitably children are showing a wide variety of emotions. You may notice your child(ren) acting out more, seem more sensitive or complain of ailments more than usual. Transitions are hard for all of us and we do our best to put closure on our year together in a meaningful way. You can help your child process all of this by trying to be a little extra patient and understanding and highlighting all the positive things about the year of growth they have had and all the exciting things they have to look forward to.

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

  • How did you feel about performing your play?
  • What was your favorite part about performing?
  • What were you excited to show me in your classroom? Why?
  • What are your three most favorite things about kindergarten? Why are they your favorite?
  • What are you looking forward to this summer?
  • What are three things you learned in kindergarten?
  • Share your favorite memories of when you were in kindergarten.
  • Make up mathematical story problems for one another. For example, there were four kids going swimming, each of them had a floatie on each arm. How many floaties were there?

Five more days!

The Kindergarten Team