Kindergarten Weekly Note

Dear Kindergarten Families,

This was a week of experts and performances. We chatted with a costume designer in Chicago via Skype, Meghann Patten, who happens to be Jonah’s sister! She taught us that costume designers first create drawings of characters’ costumes, then use lots of special tools to bring them to life. She taught us that costume designers make lots of mistakes and change and fix costumes they are working on, and that people putting on plays have to cooperate to make the play work. Next, Marisa’s friend, Foster, an actor and make-up artist, joined us to show us how make-up can help to change a person from who they actually are to someone completely different. He talked about how male actors can perform as female characters and vice versa. We were able to watch how Foster transforms himself into the character Lili by using make-up. In Kindergarten-B, Tatyana Rashkovsky, Sophie’s mom, shared her experiences performing in children’s opera. She focused on costumes and make-up and shared wonderful photographs.

On Tuesday we visited the Arden Theatre for a performance of  The Stinky Cheese Man.  The show itself is based on a book of silly versions of fairy tales that we read earlier in the week. The plays our students write and perform for you will also be adaptations of books – stay tuned for details. We also got to meet with a production manager to learn more about the technical elements of putting on a play. We were able to see a set being built for an upcoming show.

The Jasper String Quartet also performed for us on Tuesday afternoon.

Please put on your calendars: Thursday, June 2, 1:15pm - Please join us for the Kindergarten Learning Celebration starting with our Kindergarten Plays in the Garage, followed by a classroom tour and cast party in the Kindergarten rooms.

In Writing Workshop we added the words “he” and “she” to our sight-word lists. We also introduced the idea of using writing to make lists. We have been making lists for a variety of purposes, including ways to help our classroom theater. Students made lists of different ideas or materials needed for areas of our theater, who will perform which play in our “loft theaters,” and of characters they might like to be in a play.

In mathematics this week we focused on adding different combinations of quantities to get to ten, as well as playing games that reinforce figuring out numbers that come before and after other numbers.

We had fun at The Schuylkill Center this week despite the cool, wet weather. We played in the woods and reinforced what the children have been learning in Seed to Table – about the importance and function of the roots of a plant. We read books about roots, sketched roots and talked about which roots are edible. We learned that roots hold a plant in place and help it to get the water and nutrients the plant needs to grow.

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

  • What did you learn from Meghann, the costumer designer?
  • What did you learn from Foster, the make-up artist?
  • What did you think of  The Stinky Cheese Man
  • What do roots do for a plant?
  • Play a math game - ask your child to tell you what number comes before or after another number. Then let him/her ask you the same thing (perhaps you can sometimes answer incorrectly to see if your child can correct you!).
  • While you are eating a meal together, discuss if any of the vegetables on your plate are roots. Look carefully at other parts of plants you may be eating.

Enjoy Spring!

The Kindergarten Team