Feeling appreciated

First off, a big thank you from Sra. VanderMeer and I for all of your kindness and appreciation this week! It is such a blessing to work in a school community of people who truly care about one another. Along with the blessing of being with your children on a daily basis we are blessed with wonderful parent and family support as well as a great PTO. Thank you!!

And thank you again for your support of Market Day last week. Our school raised over $10,000 for organizations in Ethiopia and Ghana.

A few reminders as we come to the end of March (can you believe it?!):

~This is the last month for Book-It. Please turn in your forms for a pizza coupon next week.

~Monday is a Box Tops collection day. Our class could use some more tops!

~After Spring Break we will be saying “Adiós Inglés.” We would like to celebrate this along with Srta. Weingarden’s class with a big fiesta. Please check out our sign-up sheet if you would like to help us with this event.

  Important Dates:

April 2 – Easter Chapel, 8:25

April 3-10 – Spring Break

April 14 – Adiós Inglés, 11:45am

May 7 – Spring Program, Save the Date!

June 2 – All day trip to Critter Barn, Save the Date!

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This week our sight words were “él” (he) and “no.” We continued to work on some tricky Spanish sounds like “h” (silent) and “j” (“h” as in “house”). We often get these mixed up when we read! We are also looking forward to our “Adiós, Inglés” party after Spring Break. See above for more details.

During writing time we continue to work on our persuasive pieces. This week we took a closer look at letter writing and came up with come strategies to make our writing convincing. We can use polite words like “gracias” and “por favor,” give lots of reasons why we think things should change, and share a short story that helps prove our point. I apologize if you hear some convincing arguments for staying up late or extra screen time at home!

In Math, we have been breaking numbers into parts and looking for “missing parts.” We have told more and more number stories (great for math concepts and Spanish vocabulary building!) and are hard at work on our number scrolls trying to see how high of numbers we can write.

This week in Bible we began to hear about the events surrounding Jesus’ death and resurrection. We began with the celebrations of Palm Sunday, washing the feet and the Last Supper. As we talk about these stories as a class it is wonderful to hear the children explain why Jesus died and how he saved us. Their humble faith and understanding is heartwarming to witness.

Happy Spring!

Today was the first official day of spring! It’s great to see the snow melting away and be able to wear less clothes to play outside. We have been enjoying our outdoor time this week even though we have had some cooler days.

Today we also enjoyed visiting the Market. We were proud to sell our tortillas and excited to see all the amazing things that other kids and classes had put together. What a great community building event and fundraiser! Thank you to all the parents who participated and especially those that helped bring a group of kindergarteners through the Market.

 Spotlight on: Working with iPads (Trabaja en la computadora)

During this time, students have the opportunity to use various games and programs on the iPads. Working in pairs, students build Spanish vocabulary and reading skills through all-Spanish apps and have the chance to practice their own Spanish. It is during this time that students have been recording their math stories (using the app educreations). Sometimes, they have the chance to read and listen to books and magazines in Spanish that give them instant feedback on their developing language concepts. In addition, the skills used on the iPads are foundational to the work they will later undertake as technology is integrated more in the upper grades. This is definitely a favorite activity for most students!

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 Important Dates:

March 25 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Wear green in honor of Green Eggs and Ham

April 2 – Easter Chapel, 8:25

April 3-10 – Spring Break

May 7 – Spring Program, Save the Date!

June 2 – All day trip to Critter Barn, Save the Date!

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This week our sight words were “ella” (she) and “todos” (all/everyone). We have also been working very hard to use as much Spanish as possible. During our literacy time, we have told the “story of our day” by sitting and circle and having each kindergartener add one sentence to a story about what we did that day. As we work towards using more and more Spanish in the classroom we look forward to saying “Adiós ingles” and having a big party to celebrate. Stay tuned for more details…

In Writing we continued working on our persuasive writing. We also reviewed some strategies for sounding out words – we can stretch the sounds, listen for vowels, use the word wall or look around the classroom. We also talked about asking friends for a word in Spanish “¿Cómo se dice…?” before asking the teacher. It’s amazing how much Spanish we know if we just take a minute to stop and think!

In Math, we worked on writing our numbers from 1-100. Some students enjoyed this activity so much that they continued on and have been writing numbers as high as they can to create a giant number scroll. We have also been trying to find the missing part in equations (i.e, 10 = 4 + ?) You can also see a few more of our math stories by clicking on a student’s name: Lydia, Akaela (check out last week’s post for more).

This week in Bible we read about Jonah and the big fish. We even learned a new Spanish song to accompany the story. Ask if you can hear it at home.

Signs of Spring

How wonderful to see the sun this week and feel some warmer temperatures. I know that outdoor is coming home a little wet this week but we are enjoying our outside time more and more! Please keep sending in coats, hats and mittens as it is not quite warm enough to go without – though the kindergarteners would like to!

Market Day is next Friday! We could still use some help with our own classroom project.

~If you have a tortilla press at home that you are willing to lend us for a day that would be greatly appreciated!

~We also really need a few parents to help us in actually making the tortillas on Wednesday, March 18 from about 1-2pm. Please let me know if you are interested.

~We will visit the Market as a class from 11:15-11:45 on Friday, March 20 and encourage parents, grandparents, neighbors, etc to join us either at that time or another time during the day. The Market will be open from 8am-4pm.

 

Spotlight on: Listen to Reading (Escucha la lectura)

Listening to reading provides a long-recognized list of benefits of providing a reading model, conditioning a child’s brain to associate reading with pleasure, exposing students to a variety of books and genres, creating background knowledge, stimulating students’ imaginations, stretching students’ attention spans, building vocabulary, improving listening comprehension, and establishing the reading- writing connection. In the Spanish Immersion setting it is especially helpful for the students to have the opportunity to hear other native speakers and listening to books read aloud helps them to grow their vocabulary and acquire new words in a way that is fun and engaging. I highly encourage parents to invest in books on CD in Spanish that children can listen to at home – though this should never fully replace the interactive reading time they should spend with mom and dad.

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 Important Dates:

March 18 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Who-Hair Day

Making Tortillas 1:00-2:00pm

March 20 – Market Day, 8am-4pm (we will visit at 11:15am)

March 25 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Wear green in honor of Green Eggs and Ham

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This week our sight words were “bien” (good) and “dijo” (he/she said). We reviewed syllables beginning with “h. ” We sometimes confuse the “c” “h” and “ch” – these can be tricky! For a refresher: the “c” sounds like a hard /k/ in the syllables “ca, co, cu” and a soft “s” in the syllables “ce, ci.” The “h” is always silent and the “ch” is just like the English “ch” in “cheese.”

In Writing we began a new unit about writing to make change. We thought about problems within our own school and how we might address them. This has led us to begin making signs, writing letters and making up songs to talk about how we could fix problems like running in the hall, climbing up the slides, shouting in the classroom, etc. We really enjoyed listening to Reducir, Reutilizar y Reciclar on YouTube and trying our hand at making similar songs to bring about change.

In Math, we worked on manipulating the number 10 by breaking it into parts and writing sums of 10 + some more. You can also see more of our math stories by clicking on a student’s name: Piper, Maddox, Liah, Caleb, Whit, Evan, Josephine, Mackay, Will y Zuly (check out last week’s post for more).

This week in Bible we heard one more of Elisha’s miracles and began talking about one of Israel’s faithful kings, King Hezekiah. From King Hezekiah we learned that we must always be faithful to God and that we should come to him first with our concerns.

Celebrating Dr. Seuss

What a fun week we had kicking off Reading Month this week. We enjoyed hearing Mystery Readers from our school and guessing who it might be and we enjoyed our first classroom Mystery Reader today, thank you Mrs. DeBlecourt! If you would still like to sign up please check here. We will continue to celebrate all month long with Wacky Wednesdays (see schedule below) and more mystery readers in our classroom.

Market Day is coming soon! We are very excited to be supporting ministries in Ethiopia and Ghana and our classroom will join with other students and classrooms in creating goods to sell during the Market. We will make homemade corn tortillas. There are a few ways you can help us:

~If you have a tortilla press at home that you are willing to lend us for a day that would be greatly appreciated!

~We could also use a few parents to help us in actually making the tortillas on Wednesday, March 18 from about 1-2pm. Please let me know if you are interested.

~We will visit the Market as a class from 11:15-11:45 on Friday, March 20 and encourage parents, grandparents, neighbors, etc to join us either at that time or another time during the day. The Market will be open from 8am-4pm.

***We are still in desperate need of help for New2You Volunteers to support the immersion program. Please take a look here.***

 

Spotlight on: Read to Others (Lee con alguien)

 During this component of our literacy time, students have the opportunity to read to another classmate. They take turns reading from their own book box or reading a new book from a friend’s box. This time gives them a chance to read aloud and hear their own voice – an important task that helps them build fluency and expression. Oral reading also helps increase reader involvement and student’s attention to reading. Working with peers enhances collaboration skills within the classroom community.

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 Important Dates:

March 10 – Dine at Culver’s to support GRCES, 5-8pm

March 11 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Funky Feet day (socks or slippers)

March 18 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Who-Hair Day

March 20 – Market Day, 8am-4pm

March 25 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Wear green in honor of Green Eggs and Ham

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This week our sight words were “jugar” (to play) and “hacer” (to do/make). We reviewed syllables beginning with “ll” and “ñ” – some of our trickier sounds! We also enjoyed reading many books by Dr. Seuss and learning a little about his life. On Friday, we wrote about our favorite Dr. Seuss book and made a “Cat in the Hat” hat. If you get a chance, you can stop by and see these up in the hallway.

In Math, we began a new unit and new focus on telling and retelling number stories. Some children had the chance already this week to create their own math stories on an iPad. More will do this next week, but for now you can see what we’ve done so far by clicking on a student’s name: Ellie, Stella, Will y Zuly, Violet, Stella y Sylvia, Henry y Evan, Sylvia, Zuly, Becket, Jonas

This week in Bible we began to hear about Elisha and how he continued Elijah’s work.

Brrrr!

We have had another cold week! Luckily we have gotten outside about once per day and it really helps us focus better when we can get some fresh (cold) air.

This week we have been very excited to take part in kindergarten mail. We learned how to write and address letters that we can send within our school. Then we had a turn to be the mail deliverers. We had to cancel the stamps, sort the mail by room and then deliver it. If you would like to take part and send your child a letter, stop by the front office where stationary and “stamps” are available for parents.

Spotlight on: Word Work (Trabaja con palabras)

Next up in our literacy time series is Word Work. This portion consists of many different activities from which every student can choose when it is their turn. Some choices include: making playdough words, writing on a Boogie Board, highlighter writing, spelling out words with old keyboards keys, etc. During this time, students practice the words on our Word Wall as well as words around the room. Learning how to spell is important to the reading process because it “helps to cultivate students’ knowledge of the alphabetic system which benefits processes used in reading” (Ehri, 1997 p. 261). Working with words can help children to “break the code” for reading. As they learn to spell out words (encode) their ability to sound out words (decode) also grows.

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 Important Dates:

March 3 and March 5 – Conferences

March 4 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Hat Day

March 10 – Dine at Culver’s to support GRCES, 5-8pm

March 11 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Funky Feet day (socks or slippers)

March 18 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Who-Hair Day

March 20 – Market Day, 8am-4pm

March 25 – WACKY WEDNESDAY, Wear green in honor of Green Eggs and Ham

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This week we reviewed sight words up to this point. Here are the most recent group of words if you would to have them at home: Lesson 16-20. We also finished and wrapped up our final how-to books. Many of these came home to go to mom, dad, or siblings – I hope you enjoyed celebrating your kindergartener’s hard work!

In Math, we finished up a unit and took a test (I’ll be sharing these with you during conferences). We are making great progress in our understanding of numbers as well as addition and subtraction. Be sure to make numbers a part of your daily conversations at home.

This week in Bible we turned to stories of the prophet Elijah. We witnessed God’s faithfulness as he cared for Elijah and performed miracles to help Elijah and the widow.

In Social Studies we continued talking about our needs and wants. We also identified more products and services and talked about how we can get products and services through trade of money or other products.

 

Happy Mid-Winter Break

What a cold week! I hope you have all been staying warm and cozy inside this week – just like we have been most days at school.

Next week we will begin parent-teacher conferences. You should have received your assigned time in your child’s blue folder this week. Please let me know if you have any questions. A pre-conference survey should have also come home. Please fill this out and return it to school as soon as possible so that we can both prepare for our short time together. Thank you!

Check out an update on the Photo page to see some pictures from February.

Spotlight on: Read to Self (Lee solo)

For a portion of our literacy time, kindergarteners are engaged in independent work through a few different activities. Each day, they have the opportunity to engage in a different activity. Over the next few weeks I will highlight one of those activities in this section.

2-11-15 (9)The best way to become a better reader is to practice everyday. During Read to Self students are independently reading books that range from emergent level readers to Level 1 or 2 books. Each child is able to read books suited to their reading ability and they learn valuable skills that allow them to self-monitor and self-regulate their own reading. This time helps students to develop a habit of reading that builds a foundation for a love of reading throughout life.

 

Important Dates:

February 20-23 – No School, Mid-Winter Break

February 24 – Growing Deeper, 7:00-9:00pm

February 26 – Conferences

March 3 and March 5 – Conferences

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This week our sight words were “van” (they go) and “para”. We also looked at the syllables “lla, lle, lli, llo, llu.” We are able to sound out so many words now! Take a minute to listen to your child read and compliment them on their growth over this long weekend.

In Math, we are continuing to break numbers into parts. We have been practicing writing our own sumas by looking at drawings and we made a booklet to show all of the teen numbers as 10 + extras.

This week in Bible we read about King Solomon’s reign. Though he began as a faithful servant of God, Solomon eventually began to turn away from God and worship pagan idols. Even though Solomon was not faithful, God promised not to break his promise to David that his descendants would continue to rule.

In Social Studies we began a small study of economics. We talked about necesidades (needs) and deseos (wants) and thought of examples of each. Then we grouped some of our deseos into productos (goods) and servicios (services).

¡Feliz dia del amor!

What a fun week we had in kindergarten! Day 100 was a big success, we enjoyed a special breakfast, lots of special 100 activities and most of all just loved being in PJs. And even though he was a day late, we loved meeting Zero the Hero who also celebrated Day 100 with us. We also had a great time showing our love for each today as we celebrated Valentine’s Day together. A big thank you to parents who provided treats for our party.

Thank you so much for continuing to send in a snack each day and search for all of those boots, hats, and mittens to send in each day. These little details make our days go so much smoother!

Important Dates:

February 16 – No GRPS Bussing, Gym Pick Up

February 20-23 – No School, Mid-Winter Break

February 24 – Growing Deeper, 7:00-9:00pm

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This week our sight words were “ser” (to be) and “en” (on/in). We used these words to talk a lot about what we want to “ser” when we grow up. We also looked at the syllables “cha, che, chi, cho, chu.” These can be tricky because we want to make a hard “c” sound but we have to remember that the “ch” has a different sound.

In Math, we are really working on our “sumas” and “restas” through 10. You can practice these at home in fun ways by asking your kindergartener for help counting out plates for dinner or  picking out enough apples at the grocery store. Make talking about numbers a part of your normal routine :-)

This week in Bible we heard about David and how he became king. God cared about how David looked on the inside and not about his outward appearance.