Sunday, September 18, 2011

5th Grade Science Buddies

We got to partner up with 5th grade students to do a fun science experiment. I read the Dr. Seuss story, Bartholemew and the Oobleck to my students on Thursday. The next day our fifth grade friends came to join us to make our very own Oobleck. The substance was sticky, ooey and gooey, stretchy, and bouncy. The kids made great observations and asked interesting questions. I think both sets of students had a great time. We look forward to continuing these relationships and diving into more science together!

Open House

We had a "SUPER" Open House. Thank you all so much for attending. The kids loved being able to show and share all of the things that they have learned so far! It is evident in the pictures below that our class has very dedicated and involved parents who value their child's education. I cannot say THANK YOU enough for that!

Kindergarten Couldn't Be More Fun!!

We read the story, Harry the Dirty Dog. This story is about a white dog with black spots who goes around the neighborhood getting really, really dirty. This book sparked the idea for a fun, creative, and hands-on activity! I decided to make chocolate pudding with the kids. We each took turns with the different steps involved. Andrew and Jose were the photographers that actually took the pictures in the slideshow below. We made it into a cooking show, narrating each ingredient and step that we were doing. Once the pudding was mixed up real good, we put the cups of pudding into the fridge. When the pudding was ready, the students all got a large marshmallow and "painted" their white outlined "Harry the Dirty Dog" on paper. They decided just how dirty they wanted their "Harry" to get. The kids loved painting with marshmallows and pudding and they definitely were not complaining about getting to lick the rest from the cup, marshmallow, and their hands. I really don't know who had more fun...the kids or me. We later wrote a "step-by-step" piece of writing about the sequenced steps involved in making the pudding. Students drew and tried to label and/or sound out what happened in each step.
Making Pudding on PhotoPeach

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Beginning Sounds

We have been practicing beginning sounds in so many ways. Students loved working with a partner in this literacy activity. Students looked through magazines and tried to find things that began with a particular beginning sound. Not only did they love working with each other, they also helped other partners out. As they were working I heard a students say, "Who has the "g"? We found a picture of "gum" in our magazine and you could glue it on your paper if you want." There are so many fun ways to practice beginning sounds at home too! Choose a letter and then ask, "Can you think of any animals that start with that letter? any food items? any cartoon characters? any names of people that you know?" Another easy and fun way to practice this skill is when you are in the car, ask your child to think of something that makes the /a/ sound. Then you think of something that has the /b/ sound. Takes turns going back and forth and before you know it you'll be through the whole alphabet. A good goal to get to is if a child can quickly recall 6-7 words that begin with each sound. Ex: /b/-baby, bear, button, blue, brown, black, ball.

Math Centers

We began math centers this week. Students enjoyed getting to practice various math skills. A few of the math skills are number recognition, number writing practice, pattern blocks, recognizing and counting shapes. The skills for math centers will continue to change as we introduce and learn new math skills. I work with one center, helping students learn the necessary skill. I give them feedback and encouragement. This also provides me with an informal assessment on how each child is doing with this particular skill. I will also be adding a few "enrichment" math centers for students who are performing at a higher level and are ready for a challenge.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Fuel Up to Play 60

Last Friday we participated in a "Fuel Up to Play 60" Kickoff Celebration. Our whole class ran around the big track two times. We cheered everyone on! A few students won prizes and then we danced to The Cha-Cha Slide. Our class is super excited about staying fit and exercising! Just look at our muscles and smiles!

Literacy Stations

We began literacy stations last week. Students loved the opportunity to choose a station and practice a reading skill. Students are featured below participating in 1)Big Book Reading, 2)Computers, 3) Reading around the room, 4)Retelling Star Books, 5)Reading Nonfiction Books and 6)Books on Tape.

Hickory, Dickory, Dock

We practiced the nursery rhyme, Hickory, Dickory, Dock this week.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Having a good time with Nursery Rhymes!

We have been "reading" and acting out nursery rhymes. Nursery rhymes are a great way for kids to feel successful at "reading" because nursery rhymes are usually short and have some motions that can be acted out. Students practice pointing to the words on the chart (teaching them to read left to right, one-to-one correspondence), identifying the beginning, middle, and ending parts to each nursery rhyme, and finding words that rhyme. As you can see we also had a lot of fun acting out the words. Each student is making a nursery rhyme book that will have the words typed out and have empty boxes next to a few words for students to draw their own illustration in. For example, next to the word "hill," students would draw a hill. As they "read" their nursery rhymes during Reader's Workshop, the pictures and big font help them to follow along word-by-word.

Super Scientists!

Last week we talked about who a scientist is and what a scientist does. I was so impressed that so many students identified themselves as scientists already-AWESOME! We read a few books and discussed different tools that a scientist could use. Students drew themselves as a scientist and then explored different things around the room with hand lenses.