|From the Teacher's Desk |
The end of the school year is here. May is full of many exciting events and though we are sidetracked by some of them, our learning continues. We are going to finish up our 9th and 10th themes in reading as well as our Geometry unit and Unit 10, which focuses on numbers in the teens and greater, and applying them to the calendar and everyday life.
I would like to take this time to personally thank each of you for your support this year, whether you were a room parent, chaperone on a field trip, volunteer in the library or for hot lunch, worked a bake sale or prepared baked goods, came in to teach the children about a holiday, or assisted with the Gala projects. Each of you played an important part in your child's education. Children value their school and education when they see that their parents value it. As a volunteer, you prove that you value what goes on in school and want to be there to enrich it.
Over the summer, please work on the First Grade homework packet and keep what your child has learned this year up to speed. I know that summer is a break, but children tend to forget so much of what they have learned and gained in reading and math when they do not practice it at all for two and a half months.
I will miss each one of my students and each year at this time, I wish that I did not have to send them on, but I know that they are ready and will continue to grow and learn next year. Thank you for trusting me with your child and sharing your child with me.
|Language Arts |
This month's themes are "Spring is Here" and "A World of Animals." The children will be building on letters and sounds that have been previously introduced, as well as learning the new Alphafriends for "Jj" and "Uu." Words with short -u- will be introduced and short /e/ and short/o/ words will be reviewed along with short -a- and short /i/ words. There will be new high frequency words learned. The children will continue to write sentences using high frequency words. We will continue to work to improve our reading skills through the use of high frequency and phonetic skills readers.
Comprehension is an essential part of reading, for decoding alone does not impart meaning to the reader. Therefore, comprehension skills such as predicting and inferring, summarizing, and evaluating are taught and reinforced daily. Children should practice predicting what will happen next, summarizing and retelling the story, and evaluating the actions and characters as they are read to by parents or siblings.
Writing is an integral part of learning to read. The children write regularly in their journals and when creating a squiggle. Correct spelling is not important; rather deconstructing words, identifying the sounds, and writing the letters. Writing will help all children become better readers. We have introduced the use of a dictionary to help write words they need when journaling. We use My Word Book as an addition to our reading and writing curriculum.
The children will be focusing on numbers in the teens and greater numbers. They will be adding dimes and pennies. They will be applying knowledge of greater numbers through use of a calendar. They will spend time ordering numbers. All skills taught this year will be revisited and reviewed. Over the summer, find ways to integrate addition, subtraction and counting as well as number recognition and order into your child's daily life. Symmetry is found in nature and even in cutting a sandwich into halves. Adding the number of forks and knives on the dinner table, or counting the change from Dad's pocket each night is a great way to keep skills gained from regressing.
|Muffins for Moms |
The Kindergarten children had a wonderful time preparing for Mother's Day. They began by creating a vase. This required intense fine motor skills as they pinched off pieces of modeling clay and pressed them onto a jar. They also had to select small buttons, gems and shells to press in to the clay. Next, the children each traced their hands and carefully cut them out. They turned their hand prints in to lovely lilies to put in to the vase. Each of them also composed a message for their mom and wrote it in a card that they lovingly folded, cut and glued. We had a great time making four dozen muffins to serve to our moms. We measured, poured, cracked eggs, mixed, filled muffin tins and observed the changes between the batter and the finished muffins. On Friday, April 29, 2011, our moms were invited to come to school for breakfast. The children each escorted their mom to their special seat. Once the moms were all seated, the children entertained them with a short play and a song. Then, they served their moms the muffin and beverage of their choice before serving themselves. When we finished, we took our moms to the playground. We love our moms and hope that they had a great morning!
|Kindergarten Art Gallery |
The culmination of our year long study of the great artists was an art gallery. Throughout the year, Kindergarten children learned about and created art work in the style of many well-known artists. Their work was displayed in the hallways for several weeks. On April 26, 2011, the art gallery was officially opened and parents were invited to attend. A group masterpiece in the style of Louise Nevelson was unveiled and is hanging in the front office. The children were proud to take their parents on a tour through the gallery and to share what they had learned about each artist. Bridgette Kontner, a current sixth grade student at Barnesville, enchanted us all with her lovely violin music as we traveled through the hallways. At the end, there were cookies for all. A good evening was had by everyone. Portfolios containing their artwork will come home on May 7th.
Looking ahead to First Grade, the Kindergarten children have homework Monday through Thursday. Please help your child complete the work and return it to school the next day. Homework should take no more than 15 minutes per night. Letter-sharing bags continue as homework each week. Please help your child find an object beginning with the weekly letter, think of some clues for the object and bring it to school for Friday morning sharing.
Children need SNEAKERS every day for safe play inside and outside.
|Tentatively Scheduled Events |
May 6- May Day Celebration
May 12- Field trip to Pollin Farm
May 27- Fathers’ Breakfast
May 26- Arts and Academics Night
May 27- Noon Dismissal
May 30- Memorial Day Holiday- no school
June 1- Field Day-morning
June 6- Move-up Day
June 7- BeachDay
June 10 Graduation, last day of school, 12:00 dismissal
During the month of May, we will begin our final unit of this school year called “Animals.” In this unit, we will learn about wild animals and farm animals. We will talk about some characteristics: where they live and what they eat. Also, students will continue practicing the poem and dance for our Spanish Night.
I hope your children have had as much fun as I have learning about famous artists this year! We capped off our studies with our trip to the National Gallery of Art to see the "real' thing by artists we learned about in class. I want to thank all the parents who helped chaperone the trip. It was both an educational and fun event! We also had a wonderful time at our first ever gallery opening. In May, we are going to do something a bit different. We are going to do some outdoor art, such as making a bird's nest, and we are going to do some art as we listen to music, particularly Camille Saint-Saens's, "Carnival of Animals." We will act, draw and dance to his music. It's been a pleasure teaching your cherubs this year!
In Music Class, the Kindergarten students have been listening to the sounds of sixtets and septets. The sixtet presented to them the unusual, "ear-stretching" sounds of avant-garde composer Karlheinz Stockhausen's "Kreuzspiel" (meaning "Crossplay", a method of composing atonal music). They continue to work on their solfege skills, and on interpreting "picture symbol charts" which present to them the basic building blocks of a song. They plan to welcome Spring with May Day festivities, including celebratory singing and dancing, on May 6th, beginning at 10:30 a.m. You are all invited!
|Physical Education |
|Kindergarten has been working hard on their hockey skills. They learned different ways to move the puck, how to hold the hockey stick, and how to shoot into the goal. They will be learning about lacrosse in the upcoming month! As the weather begins to get warmer, we will also be utilizing the outdoors to learn about different activities and games.|