Early Childhood Curriculum Update

October 2017

Mott Class - Preschool

This month, the Mott Class dove deeper into our study of ponds and streams. We visited a pond where children went on a scavenger hunt to find things like leaves, trees, acorns, frogs and feathers. We were even able to bring some of these items back to the classroom to take a closer look and use them to sort. After this field trip, we practiced being authors and wrote words for some of the pictures taken on our field trip. We turned it into a book and named it The Pond Picture Book.

We also spoke about all the different bugs you might see at a pond. We discovered that there are so many! We then used our thumbprints and markers to make bug pictures. Some children made caterpillars, some made mosquitos and some made up new types of bugs.

This month we read a book called How Full is Your Bucket? by Tom Rath and Donald O. Clifton. This book encourages positive behavior by using the concept of an invisible bucket to show children how easy and rewarding it is to express kindness, appreciation, and love by "filling buckets." We then furthered this concept by making our own buckets out of plastic cups and sequins. Everyday we practice this language by telling each other what fills our buckets or empties them.

Hicks Class - Preschool

The Hicks Class has been studying creeks and ponds by reading about them and going on field trips to see what lives in and around them. The children noticed that a stream, if followed, can take you somewhere and a pond takes you in circles. We’ve studied water bugs, little fish, crayfish and frogs. The children helped collect a water sample and have been watching it under a microscope to see single cell microorganisms that live in it.

October was an exciting month as we cooked each week with apples and learned about how to eat healthy. We have been practicing yoga as we act out stories and play games that involve breathing and calming our bodies.

The class has been exploring through STEM activities, which include listening to the story, The Gingerbread Man, and building something to help him safely cross the river. Many children used Popsicle sticks and tape to create a bridge for him to cross the river. Other children built him a boat. After the children finished their creations they tested them in our sensory table that was filled with water. There was such excitement as they watched the boats float and bridges stretch across the water table. For those projects that didn’t work, a new plan was formed and the child made adjustments before a second test was done.

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Rustin Class - Kindergarten

The Rustin Class is finishing their study of community helpers which focused on pets and pet stores. The class was lucky enough to visit Pets Plus where we saw lots of different dog foods (17 bags on one shelf!), pet products like water and food bowls, and even a “cat tree”. We were also able to have two dogs from the Seeing Eye Dog community visit our class. Our last field trip inspired us to build an SPCA. Children sewed animals from felt and constructed cages with blocks. We had to measure the space to be sure that our pets would fit inside with room for their bowls and litter boxes. Then we made bowls and food for the animals and even some pet toys, something we did at the SPCA on our trip. We were excited to show off the Rustin Class SPCA to the school community at the breakfast to benefit hurricane relief in Puerto Rico. Even with the construction of the Rustin Class SPCA, we found time to make sweet potato pancakes for the Hurricane Relief breakfast. The Rustin class is continuing to work on our handwriting and have started writing in our writing journals. There are some very scary Halloween stories in our journals!