Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Mrs. Lorenz's Last Day and the Fall Festival

Today was Mrs. Lorenz's last day student teaching in our classroom.  She has been here for nine weeks.  We are proud that we were able to help her become a great teacher.  This morning we all worked together to make her a class book.  We each made a page for the book and wrote about something we liked about her.  We added our pictures to the pages and our clerk,  Mrs. Mason, bound it into a book.  When we gave it to Mrs. Lorenz, she was really happy and she read the whole thing to us!

Mrs. Lorenz will be student teaching seventh grade Social Studies at Dakota Hills Middle School beginning on Monday.  We are sure going to miss her.  We wish her lots of luck and are already looking forward to her coming back to visit us.

Of course, today was our Fall Festival.  We could hardly stand the excitement as we worked on our school activities this morning.  Once we got through lunch, it was time for the fun to begin.  We got our costumes on and participated in the school parade.  It was fun to be in a parade but more fun to be able to watch it and see our friends walk by in their costumes.

After the parade, we had a party.  We played Hot Pumpkin (kind of like the game Hot Potato), bean bag toss, got tattoos, decorated and ate cookies.  It was really fun and we are super excited for tonight and trick or treating.  Good thing we get to sleep in a little tomorrow!

A very special thank you to all of the parents who coordinated and helped with our class party.  To quote one of my students, "This was the best Halloween party EVER!"  I agree!

More party photos below.  Have a safe and happy Halloween!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Spanish and Pumpkin Math

Today it was Cycle Day of our favorites because we had Spanish!  Our Spanish teacher is Mr. Jose Martinez.  He is a really cool teacher and we are learning lots of Spanish words from him.  We are really good at counting to ten in Spanish and we know our color words, too.  Mr. Martinez loves to play his guitar in our class and he teaches us songs to help us learn our Spanish.

Today's Math lesson was called Pumpkin Math.  We estimated how much our pumpkin weighed and how big the circumference of the pumpkin was.

Then we had to predict whether or not pumpkins can float.  We thought it would sink.

Boy, were we surprised!

We are super excited for tomorrow!!!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Education City

We visited the computer lab again today.  Mrs. Mullin, our computer clerk, helped us all get started on Education City.  Last Friday Mrs. Kurt sent home a password for us to use Education City at home.  Today we practiced logging on and getting checked in to our class.  We also completed the counting activity "Bake Shop".  The most exciting part was we got to use our headphones.  It was really fun for us.  Please take some time at home and check out the Education City website.

As promised, we added details to the pumpkins that we painted last week.  We added stems, vines and seeds.  They turned out great!

You've probably been hearing lots about the All Star Code, Shining Stars and our clips.  I thought you would like to see these things.  The All Star Code consists of three points:  I will be responsible,  I will be respectful and I will be safe.  We recite the code daily and talk about ways we plan to be responsible, respectful  and safe in school.

There is an All Star Student behavior chart in our classroom.  This chart consists of seven categories.  When the students arrive in the morning, one of their morning jobs is to take the clothespin with their name on it at their table spot and clip it on to the chart on the green "Ready to Learn" section.  Depending on behavior, clips can be moved up or down throughout the day.  

Clips can move up to "Good Job", "Role Model" or "All Star Student".  Anyone who gets up to "All Star Student" status gets a shining star.  Our shining stars are yellow pieces of paper which are filled out by a teacher or other staff member and then placed in a jar near the library.  Every Friday during the morning news, two names are drawn out of the K-2 and 3-5 jars.  Students whose names are drawn are invited to the office to choose a prize.  In addition, students can receive shining stars for a number of other things, such as good behavior, helping a friend, good citizenship, etc.  

There are some times when clips move down for not such good choices.  Clips can move down to "Be Careful", "Think About It" and "Take a Break".  If a students gets to the "Take a Break" section, an All Star Code Reminder will be sent home for parents to review with your child, sign and return.

The best part of this system is that students always have the opportunity to make better choices of fix a problem that they may be having.  When they do, clips are moved up.  It has been a very effective classroom management tool and if you have any questions regarding this, we can discuss it at conferences.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Five Little Pumpkins

As Halloween gets closer, the level of excitement in Kindergarten Plus is growing.  We worked on a poem today called Five Little Pumpkins.

You've probably heard it before but if not, it goes like this:

Five little pumpkins sitting on a gate
The first one said, "Oh my!  It's getting late!"
The second one said, "There are witches in the air!"
The third one said, "Well I don't care!"
The fourth one said, "Let's run and run and run!"
The fifth one said, "I'm ready for some fun!"
Ooooooo went the wind and out went the lights.
And the five little pumpkins rolled out of sight!

Ask your child to show you the actions.

We worked on some handwriting today.  We wrote the lower case "d" and the upper case "D".

Mrs. Hemsey, our librarian and Young Scholars teacher, is teaching us about how each of us is special or unique.  We have lots of things in common as kindergartners, but we also have things about us that are different.  We are making pictures of ourselves and writing something special about ourselves.  She will make this in to a class book and we will take turns bringing it home.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Pumpkins and Snowflakes

We are busy learning lots about pumpkins.  This morning we sponge painted paper plates orange.  Soon we will add details to these and make them into pumpkins.

We learned what the word sequence means.  Sequence means order and you should ask your child if they remember what it means...I hope they do!  We read two stories today.  One was "Pumpkin, Pumpkin" by Jeanne Titherington and "It's Pumpkin Time" by Zoe Hall.  Both of these stories were about the sequence of events that take place when growing pumpkins.  Then we did our pumpkin sequencing activity.  Check it out!

In Reading Workshop we are learning that we can find a treasure in a book.  Sometimes books might look old or boring, but if you really look at it and give it a chance, you might find a treasure in a book.  We had so much fun looking for treasures in our books today.

The most exciting thing today happened during inside recess.  We noticed that it was snowing!  Everyone went to the window to watch.  Who knew snowflakes could make Kindergartners so excited???

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Granny Goose Visits!

We met a new friend today.  We call her Granny Goose but her real name is Geri Hetterick.  This is Granny Goose's tenth year reading to the Kindergarten students at Northview.  She volunteers to read to us once a month and she has great stories.  Today she read us the story "Arthur's Halloween" by Marc Brown.  She loves reading to us and we love having her come!

In Writing Workshop today, Mrs. Lorenz was helping us to write down our ideas.  She reminded us how to count the words in the sentences that we want to write.  Then we got to write our words on the white boards.  Mrs. Kurt and Mrs. Lorenz reminded us that when we stretch out our words, we should write down the sounds that we hear.  We do the best we can and move on!

We were busy in Math today.  We did our Number Corner and played a Bugs and Tally Marks Bingo game.  We are learning to count numbers quickly using tally marks and ten frames.

After lunch we played more Bingo and then practiced making AB and ABC patterns.  We also did an activity on the SMART board in our room.  Mrs. Kurt showed us a cool Math website called Illuminations.  You can get to it by going to the Northview webpage.  Click on Grade Levels; Kindergarten and look at the websites listed under Math.  Click on Illuminations.  We did an activity in the K-2 activities sections on five frames.  You may want to check it out at home sometime!

This is an Art project we created.  We drew the trunk and branches of a tree and then Mrs. Radermacher helped us sponge paint bright colored leaves.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Computer Lab, Work Places and Davanni's Night

We had another great day in Kindergarten Plus!

This afternoon we visited the computer lab.  This was pretty exciting stuff for us, especially since it was the first time that some of us had been there.  The kids that go to the YMCA After School Program have been there before and were great helpers.  We learned about logging on and how to navigate our way around a pretty cool program called Tux Paint.

In Math, we learned a new game called "Beat You To 10".  After we learned how to play, we got to use the work places.  Today we used the pattern blocks, geoboard shapes, bucket of frogs, polydrons, unifix cube patterns, Which Bug Will Win and Beat You to 10.  We are learning lots from our work places.

Tonight was Davanni's night.  Thanks to everyone who came to the restaurant or picked up food to take home.  We appreciate your support!