Oak Room Newsletter

Week of January 12, 2015

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Reminder: No School on Monday

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This week (as told by the Oak Room Kindergartners)...

In Music we told a story about the wood, metal, and skin families. We had a little rest time at Math. We had new choices at Exploration--making books and a table where you picked a card and then put beads on a string.

We found little pieces of ice outside. We had an art celebration. We drew pieces of art. The Community Gathering room was new because there was a painting of an owl.

Handyman Joe visited us. He showed us new tools. We interviewed each other about our families. There was a firetruck outside and it was smokey.

We have new necklaces for the bathroom. We had a really long Exploration. We went into the play yard AND the playground during recess. For the first time today, we were the first ones outside!

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This week in literacy (and things to do at home)

This week in Reading Workshop the children worked on using more than one tool at once. For example, instead of just looking for words they know by heart, they can do that AND point to each word as they read AND use the pictures to help them.

Also, even though we are beginning to pay more attention to the text in a book, we still want to emphasize using meaning and structure as sources of information as well. This week Handyman Joe introduced a few new tools to help with that:

The question mark tool helps readers ask ourselves questions to check our reading. We ask, "Does this make sense?" "Does this sound right?" "Does this look like a word I know?"

The magnifying glass helps readers search for information when we get stuck on a tricky part in a book. We can look at the whole page, the pictures and other words, to help us figure out what is happening.

We also reemphasized the importance of not adding extra words as we read, and pointing UNDER each word as we read.

At home when reading with your child, pick out books that are "just right" for them--not too easy and not too hard. If your child gets stuck on a word, encourage them to look at the picture or think about the rest of the sentence. If your child reads a sentence and says a wrong word, ask them, "Does that make sense?"

In Writing Workshop we wrapped up our unit "Looking Closely." Children learned steps on how to write sentences by themselves. (See the photo below and use the steps at home!)

In Word Study we worked on the letters W and K. We sorted pictures that started with the letter sounds and practiced in our handwriting books. We have also been focusing on the sight words this, went, for, look, and are. Went was particularly tricky so practice it a bunch at home!

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This week in Project Time

This week we brainstormed questions we wanted to know about each other's families. We practiced interviewing each other and finding out more about our families. Get ready! Soon the Oaks will be bringing questions home to ask their grown-ups!

Do you have an interesting job you would like to talk to the kids about? Does your job allow children to visit on a field trip? If so, let us know! As part of this unit on family we would love to expose the children to the different things grown ups can do for a living. Email Pascale at pascale@brooklyncompass.org if you are interested!

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This week in math (and things to do at home)

In Math Workshop we revisited our combinations for 8 that we discovered last week. The children worked so hard while using rekenreks, asking themselves: Are any of my arrangements the same? Do I have all of them? Some children even figured out a strategy to check! One group shared with the class that they "flipped" their numbers around to figure out another arrangement. So, for example, if they had 2 beads on the bottom and 6 beads on the top, they just had to flip them to make a different arrangement!

Children also created their own sleepover stories! They were given a choice of either 6 friends or 10 friends at a sleepover. The Oaks were super excited and imaginative as they authored their own stories and created their own books.

At home continue to practice with your child creating different arrangements of totals up to 10.

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the 100th day of school

You might have heard some chatter about the 100th day of school. We will be planning a celebration, details to come! In the mean time, practice counting up to 100 with your child!

Also, we are collecting some items as we practice counting. Please bring in bottle caps, old keys, and buttons as they turn up. Thank you!

Contact Information

Feel free to email us anytime. Pascale can be reached at pascale@brooklyncompass.org and Lorna can be reached at lorna@brooklyncompass.org.