Week at a Glance

Becky's 2-Year Kindergarten Class...March 18, 2016

MINDFULNESS

This week is all about mindful tasting! What's your favorite food? What does it taste like? What does it feel like in your mouth? Is it soft, hard, squishy? We took turns describing (and guessing) favorite foods and mindfully eating pieces of an orange. Eating is one of those things that is so automatic that we often engage in the process without much attention. It takes focus to mindfully taste foods, although it greatly increases our ability to taste things! Digestion is greatly aided when we chew our food thoroughly, and when we take our time eating our bodies receive the message of being full right when they should, instead of after we've already eaten a little too much! It's fun to try tasting foods mindfully, and perhaps, this is a way to encourage folks to try new foods!

COMPASSIONATE COMMUNICATION

Angry! We all have times when we feel angry! When my brother doesn't stop or when I'm not allowed to watch a show or when I have to do chores...all things that make some of us feel angry. Anger is an interesting feeling, as it is often another feeling "wearing an angry mask". For instance, you may feel angry because you have to go to bed and can't finish watching a show, but if you dig a bit deeper, you may realize that what you are really feeling is disappointed or frustrated. When we feel angry, this is our brain's guard dog taking control of our actions. This is great if we are really in danger, but when we aren't, we want to have strategies in our toolbox to calm this response. Deep breaths, alone time, coloring, a walk, counting to 10...we came up with some great strategies to use to help calm our guard dogs. Once our guard dog is quietly resting our wise owls can help us think about what we're really feeling and help us to think of solutions to work through the emotion or solve the problem.

MATH

Our work with addition continues! Our new strategies for this week were using our fingers, counting on, and using facts or combinations we know. Using our fingers is a very helpful and quick strategy, as we always have our fingers right there and ready to go! Some of us practiced Using our fingers with equations with addends less than 5, while others practiced using their fingers while counting on. Counting on requires "sticking" the larger addend in your head, and then counting on from there, starting counting at the next number. For instance, if I was solving 8+5, I would stick 8 in my head and then count on 5 numbers from 8...(fingers are often helpful with this part) 9,10,11,12,13! A great skill to practice would be giving your child a number and having him or her begin counting with the next number. It's hardy than you may think!


We used all of our addition strategies to hep us with some tricky math! Students worked on worksheets that gave them a number and required them to circle all equations in which the sum equaled the given number. Some of us practiced equations with 2 addends, while others practiced adding with 3 addends, looking for 2 of the 3 numbers that they could easily add together with a known fact, and then practicing using other strategies to finish solving the equation. I was really impressed with how independent and accurate the kids were with this assignment. They are showing competency using a variety of strategies!

Sometimes it's fun to do things backwards! Even addition! For this project, I supplied the equation and kids drew a picture and came up with a story to represent the equation. This allowed me to assess how well kids are grasping the concept of addition. From donuts to rattlesnakes to cuddling and rocking chairs, we represented equations with a variety of creative stories!


It wouldn't be St. Patty's day without a little rainbow in our day! How many equations can you make that add up to 10? Follow the numbers on the rainbow to record as many equations as you can!

LANGUAGE ARTS

Writing Workshop: Our writing this week supports our invention design work. Part of the process of creating a plan for our invention involved writing a description of our invention. What is it? How does it work? We also worked to create labels for our plans to make them easier to understand. It is also essential to have a list of materials! You should have found copies of all this hard work in the invention convention pack that came home on Thursday.


Handwriting: final review of capitals


Phonics groups:

Red group: beginning digraph wh

Yellow group: short a word families

Blue group: magic e

Green group: short vs. long vowels

THEME

We spent a good part of this week developing the plans for our inventions! What will your invention look like? How will it work? We drew and wrote detailed plans of our inventions, complete with labels. What materials will you need to create your invention? We thought deeply and creatively about our inventions to prepare ourselves for the next step, actually creating our inventions! There is a great deal of excitement about this process, and everyone worked very carefully.


We also continued our learning of famous inventors. This week's inventors were the Wright brothers, inventors of the first flying machine, as you may know, and Mary Anderson, inventor of windshield wipers! After a ride in a street car in the middle of a snow storm, with extremely limited visibility, Mary created a plan for hand cranked windshield wipers. She patented the idea, but know companies were interested. A few years later her patent expired and someone else picked up the idea, which became a hit. Poor Mary never profited from her great idea, although windshield wipers remain an invention that impact lives around the world on a daily basis! What a genius invention!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

We had so much fun working with our buddies to create Rube Goldberg Machines to trap leprechauns! Look out tricky little fellows!

Important Dates

Week of March 28: Conference Week~1/2 days

March 30: Invention Convention (Science Fair) @ 6:00

Week of April 4: Spring Break~ No school

April 15: Food Bank Field Trip


Upcoming Workshops

March 25: Tessa Jane, Lucy

April 1: Atticus, Declan