Fiction -vs- Non Fiction, States of Matter, Coins and Counting

Fiction -vs- Non Fiction

We read The Mitten and our “Let’s Find Out” magazine which gave lots of neat “true facts” about the animal characters in the story. The children are really getting the hang of the difference between fiction and non-fiction. It can be tricky at times to decipher the features of each type. I have been encouraging them to have a variety of texts as part of their book box independent reading. When you are reading at home, you may talk with your child about these different types of books/materials. Additionally, when reading fiction, ask them about the characters, setting, events, problem and solution. It will help to reinforce the work we are doing here at school and I know you will be impressed with their knowledge and skills.

In addtion, we have been working with retelling familiar stories. We read three different versions of  The Gingerbread Man and compared their events. In addition, we practiced a skill that is part of the Common Core expectations for Kindergarten – going back into the text to find evidence for our thinking. We used our work with The Gingerbread Man to highlight some of the events, characters, problems in the text in a very deliberate and thorough way. We shared our thinking and then hunted through the books to make sure there was evidence to support our ideas.

States of Matter

We have been testing our ideas about melting and freezing lately. We created an experiment about what would make ice melt the fastest – table salt, rock salt, vegetable oil, or hot sauce. We made and recorded our predictions in our science notebooks. We also explored the properties of solids, liquids and gases this week.

Coins and Counting

With the beginning of February comes a change in our calendar area for math. We are collecting coins this month and have begun talking about the names and values of coins. At the same time, a few of our math workplaces require us to count five and more using nickels and pennies. This skill of “counting on” is not new to us but as we move forward with our math understandings, it is taking on more of a focus so that we can become more efficient mathematicians. We continue to practice measuring, adding, number identification and building numbers using different combinations.

Valentine’s Day Info

If you have any questions about the Valentine’s Day festivities, let me know. I sent a form via “Sign up Genius” in an email on Wednesday afternoon. If you are able to help but the format of the sign up is cumbersome, just email or give me a call.

The link for the sign up is:

http://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f084faeaf29a3f85-valentines

Art Sessions

We were planning to work with Miss Joy to create some puppets but she has been sick all week. We will reschedule our work with her for when we return from break. We will be creating a few puppets to use in our retelling work around folktales and fairy tales.

Sharing Change

As we come to the end of the rotation of  the Fish Bag sharing, we are going to shift the schedule a little bit. Beginning when we return from February Break, children can bring a toy or other object to share on FRIDAYS ONLY. The “no toy” policy still lives in our classroom but since almost everyone has had a chance for their spotlight sharing, we will allow whole class sharing on Fridays. If you have any questions about this, please let me know. Thanks!

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