Mrs. Etheridge's Class News

Our Work

This week we have been working really hard on several different things. I have been really impressed with what our learners have been able to accomplish. They have worked on finishing the corn field, researching animals in the cornfield, and lots of counting to prepare for the 100th day of school.

We began talking about what kind of animals might live in the cornfield, and I asked the learners to go home and see if they could find out more about them. They came back with so much information to share with us. We learned about the corn snake and how they are not venomous, but they still bite. The learners had many ideas about why they are in the corn field including that they might eat the mice to keep them from eating the corn. We also learned about the corn caterpillar that lives on the ear of corn, but that eats other corn caterpillars. The learners thought that they might eat other corn caterpillars because they would taste like corn!! Next week we will split into groups and do more research about these animals. We still need to find out the difference between a rat and a mouse and why the farmers want to scare the crows away. The learners are so excited about learning about these animals and deciding which one they want to create and add to the corn field.

Center time has really taken off lately. The learners are starting to take ownership of their learning and are starting to do some neat stuff during center time. One of our centers is the iPad center where learners take 10 min turns playing learning games. One of their favorites is Stack the States where they have to match states with facts about them. The other day they did not know the answer so they went and found our map of the U.S. and started using it to answer the questions. I could not believe how much they were learning about the states! In the block and manipulatives center the learners are building different structures and they are drawing them in our structure books and writing about them. The learners have also started writing books in the writing center and adding lots of details and illustrations. All of this work is initiated by the learners and they are anxious to get started each day.

A Visit from Mr. Matt

Mr. Matt is the librarian at Pike Road Library and he came to visit our class and read different stories with us. He chose to bring some books about singing animals. He had the learners join in the singing with him. He is a very animated storyteller and the learners really enjoyed having him share his stories with them.

100th Day of School

This has been a fantastic day celebrating 100 days of learning and growing together. We enjoyed lots of different activities. We started our morning with a 100 day breakfast where the learners made the number 100 with a pretzel and doughnuts. We then did rotations with other classes and the learners were able to hunt for 100 hershey kisses and match them on the 100 chart, build a sculpture out of 100 cups, and make a necklace with 100 fruit loops. During the afternoon they made a 100 book with different activities, worked together to write 100 words they know, and made a trail mix with 100 treats. I put a chart out with 100 spaces and asked them to come and write any words they knew. They worked together to write 100 words that they knew and words that they were able to find in the room. While making the trail mix they used a sheet with ten frames to line up the treats and then counted by tens before mixing them together. They were able to use lots of skills we've been learning to complete these activities.
100th Day of School1

A Bit About Resourcefulness

Resourcefulness is a skill that can be hard to learn especially for 5 and 6 year olds. I know that in our classroom academics are important and we spend a lot of time on writing, reading, and math. I believe that this is also a crucial time to focus on how to become a well rounded person who can do well in the world. One of the keys to this is being resourceful with what we have available. This is a skill that I have seen my learners really start to develop.

The learners are really starting to treat the classroom like it is a place that provides all they need to accomplish their task and that they are able to use anything in it to get things done. When they are in centers they are going to get the things they need without even asking. They get the tape, markers, paint, and other tools they need as soon as they realize they need them. This may not seem like a big deal, but it shows that they can solve their own problems and take care of their own needs.

They are also starting to use the room to help them in their learning. When they don't know words they want to write they go and find them. They remember what books have the words they need and they find them and write them. They recognize when someone comes in late and insist we do the math to update our lunch count and change it on the board. They use the calendar to find out how many days until a certain event. They are always using the things around them to help them learn more.

Resourcefulness is most helpful when they are trying to solve a problem or they want to learn more about a subject. The learners have figured out how to use the world around them to give them the answers that they want to know. This is a skill that is going to help them be lifelong learners. It is so exciting to see this developing in each one of them. We had a visitor come and observe the other day and she could not believe how easily they can handle centers and take care of problems on their own. This speaks volumes for how far your children have come and how far they are going.

Dates to Remember

Feburary 5- Class Picture Day

February 15- Professional Learning Day (No School)