"We're on a Learning Safari"
I'm so excited to have your children join me, along with our class mascot, Pete the Cat, on the ever changing adventure of Kindergarten!
Welcome aboard and thank you for visiting our Class Page. It is here that you'll read all about the latest happenings in our classroom. Each week you'll find updates, not only about classroom events, but information about our weekly curriculum and goals for learning. If you haven't already done so, please consider joining my Remind group, which will be used to inform families that our Class Page has been updated. I'll also be using Remind to inform families of any 'last minute' happenings or changes to events. To join my Remind group, simply text @62bh2e to 81010.
The only required school supply your child will need is a backpack large enough to hold a 9 x 12 folder. ALL other school supplies will be provided at school. While I suggest you have extra pencils, crayons, scissors, and glue available for use at home, please do not send your child to school with any supplies.
Updated for the Week of: January 13th
Welcome to Kindergarten, Elms Families!
I kindly request you do not send in supplies for your child's individual use at school, however, having extra pencils, crayons, scissors, and glue sticks at home will be helpful for use with Homework. If you are unable to provide these types of supplies for your child at home for any reason, please just reach out to me. I will gladly make sure your child has what they may need for their Homework experience.
Every student will be supplied a red Elms folder supplied by our PTN. I ask that this folder be returned to school daily and be used for communication between school and home.
Homework will be given once a week on Tuesdays. It is intended to be a reinforcement of classroom learning. However, don't be surprised if your child comes home and tells you that their homework is to "go outside and play!" as I'm a firm believer that 5 year olds (and ALL OF US) need to remember what it means to play and enjoy life! In addition to assigned Homework, reading with your child 15-20 minutes each and every night is highly recommended! "Book Bags" (as I discussed at Back-to-School Night) will come home with your child at a later date.
This week's Safari Star is:
*I am soooooo bad at this on Monday mornings!!! This week I will succeed!
On Monday, Natalia will bring home our classroom friend, Pete the Cat, along with a journal! They'll use the journal through the week to share about their adventures with our classroom friend.
Parents, please note, I do not expect Kindergartners to 'write' down everything they do throughout the week, and it's perfectly acceptable for parents to do the writing. We will use the journal throughout the year as a 'class book' in progress. The boys and girls typically LOVE bringing this book home as a 'reading' book once everyone has had their turn for being our class Safari Star!
Our Safari Stars so far...
Has your Kindergartner come home talking about our adventures with Pete the Cat? If not, ask them!
Pete, a story character created by the talented collaboration of Illustrator James Dean and Author/Singer/Songwriter Eric Litwin, is a cool cat with the right attitude and he's taken up residence in our Kindergarten classroom! He's got lots of great stories to tell and acts a daily reminder to us that whatever the day brings, "It's all good!"
Please make note of some upcoming dates:
Monday, January 20
In honor on Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday, Jackson School District schools are closed. We will spend time learning about Dr. King's message during the month of January, as our mantra for 2020 is "help". We are learning to help others whenever we can!
I am a strong advocate of interactive and play-based learning! While the expectations of Kindergartners has increased, developmentally, these little boys and girls are just that: little 5 year old boys and girls. It is just as important, if not more so, that my kiddos learn the importance of making friends, taking turns, being fearless, exploring their world, and spreading kindness!
Our Literacy learning is cross-curricular and I use a Balanced Literacy approach to teaching. Essentially, that means that students are exposed to skills and concepts needed to read ALL DAY LONG. This is accomplished not only through direct instruction, but through shared reading, read alouds, and interactive reading and writing.
THIS WEEK IN LITERACY:
Letters: q (qu) and z
Kindergarten List Words: this, or, that
Phonemic Skill: initial consonant sounds; final consonant sounds
Letters learned to date: t, b, f, n, m, i, u, c, o, a, g, d, s, e, r, p, j, l, h, k,v, w, x, y, q (qu),z
Kindergarten List Words introduced to date: yes, no, stop, go, I, can, to, the, a, we, look, see, like, my, at, play, is, it, am, be, you, and, me, your, our, he, she, this, or, that
Please keep the Kindergarten List Word cards sent home with you at Back-to-School Night for your use at home. I will send home a list of all the words indicating the order in which the words will be introduced for your reference.
We're using our Super Reader powers! This is, by far, MY favorite unit...just wait till you see how much these little readers grow during the next couple of months!
Our work with our latest "If...Then..." unit continues this month. We are still telling our own stories with pictures and words, trying our very best to label our pictures and use our best kindergarten spelling. We s-t-r-e-t-c-h out our words and write alllllllll the sounds we hear!
Like Literacy, Math skills and thinking is encouraged across the curriculum. I love to incorporate stories, songs, art projects, and hands-on activities when teaching, and Math time is no exception. In fact, Pete the Cat will be making an appearance here, too!
THIS WEEK IN MATH:
Topic 6, Understand Addition, continues this week...it's one of the longer topics and usually takes about 3 weeks to complete. My little friends are getting ready to add! Another big step!
At the onset of each new Topic, I will be sending home an introduction for the Topic, as well as suggested 'homework' resources for your use at home. The workbook 'homework' is recommended, but optional and will not be collected or expected to be returned to school. At the close of each Topic, I will send home a review of the material covered. At times, it will be partially completed in class. When this occurs, typically we'll have done it together.
Use what you have around your home to create the concept of number sense for your child!
The following 'chants' are used by me when we're writing our numerals in class:
1: "A straight line down, and then we're done; that's the way we make a 1."
2: "A candy cane, then a shoe; that's the way we make a 2."
3: "Around the tree, then around the tree; that's the way we make a 3."
4: "Down, across, and down some more; that's the way we make a 4."
5: "Short neck, belly fat; the number 5 wears a hat."
0: "Start up top and around we go; that's the way we make 0."
6: "Down and around to pick up sticks; that's the way we make a 6."
7: "Across the sky, then down -a line; we can make a 7 just fine."
8: "Make an S, then do not wait; twist back up to make an 8."
9: "First a circle, then a line; we know how to make a 9."
I often take a thematic approach to teaching across the curriculum. Most of our Science and Social Studies learning is done through our every day interactions, from our Morning Meeting where we build our classroom community, to stories strategically chosen.
RIGHT NOW IN SCIENCE AND SOCIAL STUDIES:
Science: "Seasons and Weather"
Social Studies: "My Community"
WE are a team…please feel free to contact me at any time with any questions or concerns you may have. I can be reached through the Main Office at 732.833.4680, or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.