A Peek at Our Week

January 15, 2016

The Heart of a Hero

This week after our morning breathing practice, we dove a little deeper into the heart of a hero. How do heroes act? What do they say? What are their characteristics? To encourage discussion and critical thinking, we began with reflecting on our own opinions about heroes. Individually or with a partner, we read several statements about heroes and either "agreed" or "disagreed." When we returned to the group to discuss our opinions we were ready with strong thoughts and reasons to support our opinion. Some statements we explored..."A hero is brave and strong." "A hero is dishonest." "A hero puts others before himself or herself." "A hero wants to be rewarded for his or her actions." As we explored these statements and shared our opinions through discussion, our understanding of what it means to be a hero deepened.

We decided that we can all be heroes! Every day we choose how are in the world with the way we speak, how we treat others and the things we do. From holding the door open for the person behind us, to inviting a friend who looks lonely to play, to standing up for someone who is being treated unfairly, to recycling a piece of paper, to saving a bumble bee from a puddle, these are all heroic deeds. In small and great ways, we can act from a caring heart to help others, animals and the environment and not expect a reward.


We continued our work with money this week with many hands-on activities. Some of us practiced adding coins by starting with the highest value and using our counting by tens, fives and ones skills to help us finish the job. 10, 20, 30, 35, 40, 45, 46, 47 cents! Yahoo!

Others practiced adding coins past a dollar and even doing some multiplying to help them figure out different orders from a menu.

We all had fun being shirt designers! We were each given an amount we could spend and with our own price lists (smaller or bigger numbers depending on the learner) in hand we could buy different items to put on a shirt. Background color? 20 cents (or 43 cents). Stripes? 2 for 15 cents (or 2 for 27 cents). We loved our shirt creations!


Writing Workshop
Did you know writing gives you super powers?? It does! It gives you the amazing powers to persuade, share experiences and memories, express ideas and communicate, entertain, inform and teach and ask questions. What amazing power writing holds!! We really love using our writing powers!

Reading Workshop
"Try a Word" is a wonderful strategy when a word really stumps us. Looking at the beginning sound, thinking about what we are reading and the context and even looking at the pictures can help us come up with a word to try out. Maybe it makes sense, maybe it doesn't. If it does, we are probably on the right track, especially if it continues to make sense as we read on. If not, try again while looking at the sounds or pictures to give us more clues.

Word Work
This week during our typical word work time, we worked on writing our own thoughts and opinions about the visiting heroes we had this week. This has been great practice formulating our thinking into organized sentences and writing. We are following our "sandwich" writing with a topic sentences, some delicious details and a conclusion with our feelings or opinions.


We had the pleasure and privileged of welcoming several visitors into our classroom this week! All amazing local heroes with BIG hearts. It was so inspiring to hear each of their stories and what they have done or do to make a different in the world and be everyday heroes.

Meet the Heroes


Did you know Janice saved someone's life??? She has! All those trainings in CPR gave her the skills she needed to jump into action and perform CPR on someone in need. She kept the patient alive for 4 minutes until the paramedics arrived. She is so amazing!

Janie brought in a CPR "Annie" to demonstrate how she performed CPR and then we all gave a go at giving the compressions. It is hard work! Most of us are not quite strong enough but one day we will be and I bet there will be several CPR card carrying community members among us.

We loved hearing her story and learning when someone is trained in CPR they then have a life-saving skill that can be used when needed with friends, families and folks they do not even know! What a great community service!

Sergeant Dave

It was really cool to meet a Sergeant! He shared all his handy tools and how much it means to him to help others and keep everyone safe and sound. He helps in so many ways...from helping people in trouble to a power pole going down. He is also part of the S.W.A.T. so he is there to help when the police need help!

Dr. Luke Hansen

We had our very own Dr. Luke Hansen join us for an afternoon to share about his work as an ER doctor. The kids had so many questions (and stories!)! One thing we learned is that Dr. Hansen must be prepared for ANYTHING that comes through the ER doors! It takes hard word to gain such skills - 12 years of education and training!!

We took a look at different x-rays and tried identifying the problems. He also showed us how to put on a splint on a few eager volunteers. It was such a great visit! Thank you so much for the work you do to help others and the sacrifices it takes to help others anytime of day or year!

Raul and Jayce - Quixote Village

Raul and Jayce both work at Quixote Village and shared with us the the work they do to help the homeless. The Village consists of 30 tiny cottages, a large vegetable garden and a community building that contains showers, laundry facilities, a communal kitchen and living and dining space. When provided this living space and not needing to worry about where they will sleep or when they will have their next meal, residents are able to have the energy and resources to further their education or seek employment. They shared reasons why someone might be without a home as well as pictures of the village and cottages. What caring community heroes!
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Our community service project this week was making lasagnas and salad to feed the residents at Quixote Village. Helping the homeless has been high on the list of ways we want to help people in our community. Learning more about Quixote Village really energized us and gave us a stronger understanding of who we were helping. Thank you all for providing ingredients to make this project possible. The children love being Earth heroes!
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The children really wanted to listen to the full "I Have a Dream" speech while they prepared the salad.

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Happy birthday Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.! We read a little bit about his life's work to prepare us for honoring him on Monday. Such an incredible hero! We had to sing him happy birthday! We found a CD in the back of one of our books and the children wanted to listen to the entire "I Have a Dream" speech (it's long!). We then found a video of the speech as well and watched clips of his speech (so cool to really see him in action!), people marching and people singing the very song they learned with Adina, "We Shall Overcome." They joined right in!

We began exploring the core principals and beliefs that guided MLK's work - LOVE, COURAGE and PEACE. We will explore more when we return next week. Learning more about MLK jr. has brought about interest in other heroes throughout history. The children insisted I read one of the books about Susan B. Anthony while they ate snack to hear more about the times when women did not have the rights they do now. Hearing about the passion, dedication, courage and belief each of these heroes had in their cause is so inspiring! We are very thankful they stood up to make a difference to change the world for the better.

There is still time to register with Stream Team to help with tree planting, mulching, etc. What a great way to honor MLK and his belief in community service. Hope to see some of you there! I will be there on the 18th!

January 16th - Tree planting
January 18th - Tree planting

Friday Workshops

  • January 22nd - Ethan, Oliver
  • January 29th - Gillian, Kaitlyn
  • February 5th - Laurel, Addy
  • February 12th - Sam, Gillian

Important Dates

  • January 18th - MLK Jr. Day - No School

Field Trips and Special Events

  • January 8th - February 10th - Read to Feed (Our Fundraising Page)
  • January 27th - Special Program at the Library - Jeriann's Class Only 10:00-12:45
  • January 28th - Food Bank - 1:00
  • May 6 - Wolf Haven - 11:45
  • May 20th - Woodard Bay Bike Trip - 12:15
  • June 3 - Cougar Mountain Zoo - 8:15