I hope you are all doing well and enjoying this gorgeous day! Perhaps you are at the soccer jamboree today? Great weather for it!
We had such a fantastic full week at school. Your children are really something special and I truly love being their teacher! I have been so impressed with their independence, caring, spunk and inquisitiveness.
This week, we worked on the beginning of our tie dye t-shirts with Ms. Gambosi in the art room. We painted a tree on our shirts and then we will add the dye on Monday 9/22. I haven’t heard back from any volunteers to help with tie dye but we would still love to have you! So, if you can make it we will be working on the project from 8:30 until about 10:30 on Monday (9/19). Please let me know if it fits into your schedule after all!
We are learning all about working together in a community. This week, we learned about the many ways we can solve our own problems when they come up. We have a “conflict flower” that delineates all the ways we can solve problems – from “ignore” to “play a different game” – we are earning our stripes as problem solvers. I have been so impressed with the children’s ability to show such caring kindness to one another without prompting. Additionally, Amy came in to teach us about “Learning Behaviors” and self-control. These two areas are new and important as we move ahead as friends and learners. She shared with us visual cues to remember the following: eyes are watching, ears are listening, mouth is resting and body is still. She brought her puppet, Puppy, to enhance her message – the kids loved it! I must say that all of the children seem to have internalized the importance of these ideas quite quickly! Bravo!
In math, we participated in inspiration modules from Stanford University to begin our year. The week of lessons was created with the notion of “growth mindset” at the center by mathematician and brain researcher, Dr. Jo Boaler. Each day, we were challenged by tasks that involved trying new things, thinking flexibly and critically, asking questions and sharing conjectures with our peers. The children really LOVED these lessons. Each started with a video that gave the focus of the lesson. A few examples were, “Mistakes are Beautiful Things,” “Conjectures, Creativity and Uncertainty,” and “The Many Ways We See Mathematics.” Next, there was a short activity that engaged our creative thinking. Finally, we had a chance to share our observations and questions. I hope to continue these types of activities throughout the year. The children REALLY loved them! Here is the website address if you are curious: https://www.youcubed.org
This week, we continued in Writer’s Workshop with our Weekend News. Each week, we write about what we did over the weekend and we practice all the habits of writers. For example, this week we learned that good writers have a cycle that they follow. First, they think about something they know a lot about (for us now, it is our weekend events), then, they select a topic to elaborate. Next, they draw a picture of that idea with as many details as possible. For our work now, the author always has to be in the picture. Along these lines, we have practiced making sure we have all body parts in our pictures to make the details clear. We have talked a lot about adding labels or words to go along with our pictures. Finally, we have done some sharing of our work as a group. It is so sweet to see their ideas coming to life on the page.
Our Forest Friday work began on Wednesday when we came together as a Kindergarten to work on our nature classroom name tags. Each child added embellishment to their tree disc name tag by attaching beads to the necklace. It was such a fun project and despite there being maybe three different kinds of beads to use – clay, wood and sparkly – each child created a something as special as themselves.
On Friday, we learned about the Constitution ahead of Constitution Day (9/17) by reading a short, easy reader and making tri-corner hats with a feather! We learned about what the Constitution is: “A special piece of paper that tells the rules of the United States” which subsequently became our mantra for the early afternoon. After this activity, we went out to the Forest for our monthly 4Winds lesson with Koran, Lisa and Chris. They acted out a puppet show all about the food chain. We became different living things that are part of the food chain. We also learned about the insect/plant part of the food chain by looking for leaves with evidence of being eaten by different types of insects. Then, we drew a picture of the leaves we found – just like observant scientists. Many thanks for such a wonderful lesson and the yummy raisins!
Upcoming Dates of Interest:
September 9/19 – Tie Dye T-shirt Making – 8:30-10:30 – We need some help!
9/22 – Adams Apple Orchard Trip – Tour begins at 10. We will leave around 9:20. Make sure to send in a bag lunch if you indicated that on your permission slip. Weather looks promising for Thursday but make sure your child has sturdy shoes for our romp around the Orchard!
9/28 – Mountain Day Hike – Whole School hike up Mt. Philo in Charlotte. You are all welcome to join us. Parents usually carpool from school because the bus is full of students!
9/29 – Open House and Robinson School – Come for an evening event to see all of the amazing work done so far this year by your children.
October 7 – Picture Day – I usually try to have us signed up for one of the first slots of the day so we can have our snapshots done before any big activities.
If you click on the images, you can get more inforamtion abou them! Enjoy!