Bonkowske Bulletin

Morganton Day School Jr. Kindergarten

Dates to Remember

11/18-11/20 Book Fair

11/19-11/20 Parent/Teacher Conferences (scheduled during the afternoon)

11/26 MDS Thanksgiving Feast (click on the link below to sign up!)

11/27-11/29 Thanksgiving Holiday Break NO SCHOOL

12/6 My Local Bakery Trip to decorate Gingerbread Men!

12/13 Polar Express Field Trip to Bryson City

12/20 Half-Day

12/23-1/3 Holiday Break NO SCHOOL


What's Happening in Jr. Kindergarten

I have really enjoyed conducting our assessments for the end of the first trimester. I value that one on one time with your children so very much, and they have become wonderfully independent in their centers. We worked on the vowel Ii through songs, rhymes and pictures. Students enjoyed working on the story of the Three Little Pigs through reading both traditional and fractured tales, as well as creating three houses made of straw (dry spaghetti noodles), sticks (popsicle sticks) and bricks (ripped red paper). You will soon find some of their work displayed outside our classroom. We also worked on counting and recognizing numerals in math. Specifically, they enjoyed creating an age collage in which they used different mediums to represent their age in years.

Cool Weather Has Arrived...

As the cooler weather sets in, please remember to dress your children for the weather each day. If it is below 50 degrees, please send coats, hats and gloves. We try to make sure they get fresh air and a chance to run every day that we can. Thanks for your help!


Reading

We will begin focusing on the vowel "Uu" this week and talking about how he can make two sounds (long u and short u). Please continue to support their learning at home by pointing out letters we have covered so far (Aa, Bb, Tt, Jj, Dd, Ff, Pp, Ee, Oo, Ii, and Uu) when you see them and ask them what sound they make, or brainstorm words that start with that sound. We have begun working on beginning sound sorting whole group and they are doing great with the letters that we have worked on. This week, I look forward to sharing their growth with you at our Parent/Teacher conferences. While conducting assessments over the last couple of weeks, I have not been able to check snappy words and decodable books. I look forward to getting back to those this week with my little readers! I have embedded the link below of a website called Starfall that is great to reinforce what they are learning in JK. It offers many literacy activities for all levels and is absolutely free! I have also sent home ABC cards in every child's folder last week. Please continue to review each letter name and sound three times a night. When you finish, you can place the cards back in the bag, place the bag in their folder and send it back to school each day. This way, when I assess them and they are ready, I can begin to add "snappy words" and decodable books to their bags. Please remember that learning to read is a learning and developmental process. Each child progresses in their own way at their own rate. We want them to develop a LOVE and PASSION for reading and we want to avoid frustration as much as possible. Make this time with your child a fun and exciting time. :0)

Math

In math, we will continue working on recognizing, sequencing, writing and representing numerals. Activities that we will be participating in include The Circle Game where they practice their one to one correspondence, and The Piggy Bank Game where students will listen as I drop objects into a container, count in their brain and then tell me how many I dropped in. This is a great way to practice counting in their heads. Please practice counting at home by pulling out a fun object and practice with them on their one to one correspondence and sequencing. During our math time this week, I may also work with them on emergency procedures. With the recent fire on Table Rock, my students have had a lot of questions. I think I will act upon their innate curiosity and take some time to review how to dial 9-1-1 and discuss how these community helpers are working so hard to help our community. I appreciate your support at home working on memorizing their address in the even of an emergency.

Unit of Inquiry

This week, we will continue our work with Nursery Rhymes and assisting Mother Goose with identifying characters who need some help with their attitudes and actions. They know and love Peter, Peter Pumpkin Eater, Little Miss Muffet, The Eensy Weensy Spider and Humpty Dumpty Nursery Rhymes. This week we will be wrapping up The Three Little Pigs through constructing houses using pipe cleaners, straws, toothpicks, raisins, pencils and blocks and use a blow dryer to see which construction can withstand the wind. :0) These activities that revolve around Nursery Rhymes are wonderful for building reading stamina, fluency and inflection. It is also great for phonemic awareness skills as they begin to hear rhyme and rhythm of reading. As you are riding to and from school this week, see how many they can remember, or maybe try saying them in silly voices for extra practice. :0) We will also use some of our U of I time this week to begin preparing for Thanksgiving. Don't forget to sign up for our upcoming feast!

Routines and Information

We have a new little field trip on the calendar. Friday, December 6th at 9:00 our students will travel to My Local Bakery downtown to decorate Gingerbread Men! Each student will get to decorate 2 Gingerbread Men. More information to come soon...


This week, I will be sending home Take Home Folders and Planners. In these folders you will find work that your child has completed at school along with any information I need to send home each day, including homework. The left side is labeled "Left at home" and the right side is labeled "Right back to school." Please try to remember to send the folder back each day. This week, please remember to return information regarding our upcoming Polar Express field trip as well as the Parent Conference Survey.


I have sent home our November book orders. They are due back to me on Tuesday, November 26th (because of the Thanksgiving holiday). These make great stocking stuffers for the holidays or entertainment for holiday road trips! Please indicate on your order if the books are intended to be gifts so I don't spoil the surprise! ;0)


I am so proud of how big and brave our JK students have become at drop off time. They are comfortable with our routine and that is all thanks to you! Thank you for your support in helping them become more and more independent as learners. In beginning my assessments for the end of the first trimester, I am amazed at their growth and retention of what we have learned thus far. I am eager to share all that they know and are learning with you at conferences on November 19th and 20th. Don't forget to sign up on the clipboard outside of our room!



Special Thanks

A special thank you to Donna Casas for presenting to MDS for Veteran's Day. Please see the link below to sign up to volunteer in our classroom. :0) Also, a big thank you goes out to the family of Katherine Bailey for providing snack for our class this week, as well as the Loomis family for helping out last week. Our current snack rotation is full through the December holiday break. Thank you! I will send the new one out some time in the near future. I appreciate all of you!

Contact Information

Work: 828-437-6782

Cell: 828-448-0310

Email: cbonkowske@morgantondayshool.com