JK Newsletter

February 7, 2016

Social and Emotional Development

At Grymes, we place a great deal of emphasis on being attentive to the “whole child.” We work hard to be sure that we’re teaching skills that don’t just cover “reading, writing and arithmetic,” but also consider the social/emotional and physical development of the children. Here are some suggestions for working on social and emotional development at home.

Think Outloud

When you encounter a challenge, such as not having the correct ingredient for a recipe, say outloud, “I don’t have what I need, I wonder if there’s a substitution for that ingredient. I am going to look that up.” This shows your child that you can “plan B”-it and helps them believe that they can, too!

Read bedtime stories

Invite your child to share their thoughts and feelings about the challenges that the characters in the story face and their responses to others.

Do a job together

Shovel snow. :-) Pair socks from the clean laundry. Set the table.

Play games

There are many valuable lessons to be learned from playing games together—whether board games, card games, or even tag or hide and seek. Children learn to take turns. They learn how to win and how to lose. They learn how to handle frustration. I remember being so close to getting one of my pieces home in Sorry, only to be sent back to ‘Start’ when I was a child. Isn’t that just like life?

Prevent potential problems

I am a firm believer in giving a child a picture of what the day will look like before it happens, as much as possible. I say things like, first we will have carpet time, then snack and recess and after that we’ll head to the library. It helps to break down exciting adventures into the steps you’ll take so that the child knows what to expect. When my girls were younger, I would write stories about trips we would take including what they might see, smell, etc. that we would read in the days leading up to our adventure. A little warning can ease anxiety and help the child feel comfortable—even in a new situation.

Classroom Needs, Wants, and News

Celebrating Valentine's Day and the 100th Day of School

What about Valentine’s Day?

We will celebrate Valentine’s Day in our class on Friday, February 12. We will enjoy a special snack, we’ll play with Valentine’s themed learning activities, we’ll make some creative projects with a Valentine’s theme - it should be a really fun day!

The children are welcome to bring Valentine’s to exchange with their classmates. Please bring one for everyone. You may also send in a Valentine’s box to collect Valentine’s in, but this is not required. We will have Valentine’s themed bags for children who do not wish to make a box in advance.

Friday is also Partner Day. Can Noon friends plan to stay until 1:00, please? We'll eat lunch with our partners. Your child may want to bring a Valentine for his/her partner. I am happy to send the partner list, again, if you need help with names for Valentines.

Questions? Please ask.

Why do we celebrate the 100th Day of School?

In JK, we introduce the skill of counting to 100. We do this in preparation for elementary mathematics.

To celebrate, we’ll assemble our snack with 10 different ingredients. Each child will have the opportunity to count our 10 of each ingredient to make 100 pieces of snack. (Mrs. Gay and I will provide the ingredients).

We’ll see what we can build with 100 cups, 100 unifix cubes,

We will consider what it might be like when we’re 100 years old.

100 days smarter, indeed!!!

(As of right now, it looks like the 100th Day of School will be 2/17)