Morganton Day School Jr. Kindergarten
Dates to Remember
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
12/13 Polar Express Field Trip to Bryson City
12/23-1/3 Holiday Break NO SCHOOL
What's Happening in Jr. Kindergarten
It was another exciting week of learning in JK this week. We continued working on the vowel Oo through songs, rhymes and pictures. Students enjoyed working on the Nursery Rhyme of Humpty Dumpty through reading, singing and looking at ways that they could try to put Humpty Dumpty back together again. You will find some of their work displayed outside our classroom. We also worked on counting and recognizing numerals in math. Specifically, they loved building a pendulum and investigating how many times different objects would swing based on their weight. It was a great chance to practice our counting and integrate science into our math time. Here are a few fun learning moments captured from our pendulum activity this week. Enjoy!
What is a pendulum?
Students first had to discover what a pendulum was and determine which way it would swing the longest.
Hop on Pop takes a ride!
Next, they brainstormed ways for the pendulum to hold objects to see how long they would swing. We found a basket in our classroom that worked great! Then, they found something "light" to try first. Our stuffed Hop on Pop then went for a ride.
A Different Way to Count Blocks
Next, they found something "heavy" to swing (basket full of blocks) and then they compared the light object to the heavy object to see which one was able to swing longer. And they discussed why they thought that could be.
What is a pendulum?
Hop on Pop takes a ride!
We will begin focusing on the vowel "Ii" this week and talking about how he can make two sounds (long i and short i). 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, and Ii) 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 will continue to assess where our students are compared to the beginning of the year, so I can share their growth with you at our upcoming conferences. 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)
In math, we will continue working on recognizing, sequencing, writing and representing numerals. Activities that we will be participating in include creating an age collage using various materials that represent their age, 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.
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 learning The Three Little Pigs through reading (both classic and fractured tales), creating the three houses and acting it out. We will also construct 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)
Routines and Information
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, you will see important information regarding our upcoming Polar Express field trip as well as a Parent Conference Survey to complete before we meet.
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!
A special thank you to Danielle Twigg, Georgia Collett and Amy Buchanan for volunteering in our classroom last week. Please see the link below to sign up to volunteer in our classroom. It would be so helpful this week to have some extra hands, as I try to begin assessments for Parent/ Teacher conferences. :0) Also, if you're able to provide snack this week. Please email me and let me know. We've had a schedule change and it has left this week open. After that, 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!