Friday, March 16, 2018

Everyone Needs A Castle

The castle is done, and a leprechaun may have demanded a rainbow get added to the whole thing.  Coins have been found and the students are hoping to design traps to catch our little friend.


Field Trip - Maple Syrup

Our field trip to the nature center was a great success.  We were able to learn about maple syrup! The children not only got to watch a puppet show that introduced how trees are tapped to collect sap, but actually experience the process first hand!  We hiked into the woods and learned what size of maple tree is best to tap, drill a tree (at the right angle so the sap can drain), tap in a spiel, and hang a lid covered bucket.  Near the entrance of the nature center we were able to observe how the water is cooked out of the sap to create delicious syrup. I do think everyone's favorite part was sampling the yummy syrup before we left.

Don't be surprised if your child wants you to start buying REAL maple syrup and not the fake stuff made from corn.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Book Fair

Thank you to Mrs. Jones in the Lower School Library for planning, organizing, and running the annual BOOK FAIR. The class had a great time selecting books to take home TO KEEP!!

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Coming Soon -- a Castle

Our latest whole class collaboration is figuring out how to turn our loft into a castle tower! Today we found a lot of cardboard and started painting it gray and adding field stone circles.  We shall see how this comes together in the coming days!

Name with Photos

We are busy working on our next name display for the hallway. We have taken the emotion portraits that the Upper School photography class took a few weeks ago and printed them out in sheets.  Students are cutting these passport sized photos of themselves and then glueing them into the shape of each letter of their name.  This requires a good deal of practice with scissors and helps continue to build fine motor strength which is important for writing.  The students are motivated to keep cutting as each photo is of herself/himself and the Upper Schoolers took several different shots of each child.  We still have a long way to go, but this is a very fun way to display our names with all of the emotions we feel!

More and More Academic

The students continue to be a wonderfully curious group.  One of the fun transitions that happens as we progress through the year is how they naturally start to take an increased interest in the more academic areas of school. We of course continue to have plenty of open explore play times, but writing and math even sneaks into those areas! 

Story sequencing has been a popular activity the last week. This is a box that has several different cards that tell a "logical"story in sequential order. The easiest set has three cards and the hardest one has eight cards.  Students look at the pictures for details and verbally tell the story in the order that makes the most sense. Story sequencing is an important skill in building reading comprehension. 

We have also seen more students self selecting the numeracy activities.  Counting, sequencing numbers, matching symbol to quantity, and even some basic addition and subtraction have all been part of the fun!

There has also been a marked increase in the spelling activities that the children have been selecting. Everyone has gotten very good at hearing and representing the first sound in words.  This is clearly demonstrated in our journal work and the projects that we hang in the hall.  Many have accepted the next challenge. This is to try and sound out the sounds in smaller words. We have several activities in the room that the children can select to spell 3 letter words.

Books under the loft continues to be a fun place to share the love of books and stories with one another. Children are often using picture cues to help retell favorite stories, using letters to figure out words, and sometimes even read all the words on a page!

These are just a few of the ways that the children are making academic choices on their own. 

Permission Slip

Your child has a permission slip coming home tonight about our upcoming field trip to learn about maple syrup. Please fill it out and return it to school with your child.