Friday, April 7, 2017

April 7, 2017

Welcome back to school, and WELCOME SPRING! What beautiful weather we've had this week! It's been so lovely not to have to bundle up quite as warmly as we needed to just two weeks ago.

We really hit the ground running this week. We launched a new writing unit, "All Abouts".  We are all experts in many things, and we can write about all we know about a subject. We use the "five finger rule" when deciding if we really are an expert about something.  If we can think of five different facts that we know about a subject, then we probably know enough about it to write an all about. Ms. Moran and I have been learning All About: Babies, Football, Tigers, Puppies, Cats, Dolphins, Star Wars, the Titanic and Love.

Rainbows are the theme for stations! Rainbow math (did you know the rainbow could help you learn about all the ways to make 10? Ask your kindergartner!), Rainbow writing sight words and phonetic words, drip drop rainbows made with liquid watercolors and eye droppers, and the Rainbow Lego Challenge. The biggest challenge was trying to build the rainbow from the inside out, and perhaps having to rethink your strategy and design when you ran out of purple legos. We saw a lot of problem solving, and ingenuity and flexibility ("Plan B") when these roadblocks appeared!

We are learning about animals and animal classification. We had a visitor from the Como Zoo come for a presentation "Fur, Feathers, Scales and Slime". Chelsea, our presenter, brought four animals for us to see. Before she brought out each animal, she gave us clues about the animal, and we had to try and guess what it might be--mammal, bird, reptile or amphibian. We saw and learned a bit about a hedgehog, chicken, leopard gecko and poison dart frog. They were amazing! We were so impressed with how well-behaved and respectful the children were.  They were mesmerized by each animal and asked wonderful questions!

This afternoon Ms. Moran and our guest teacher Mrs. Rogers took the children on a nature walk. They were able to see a turtle, a rabbit, many birds, a bird nest and some insects. They discussed each animal and what animal group they belonged to. What a glorious afternoon they spent together!

We have also begun our STEAM rotation with Mrs. Jones. This will be in lieu of our library classes, although the children will still have an opportunity to check out books each cycle. This week, they worked on the iPad coding app "Kodable", which they loved.

Have a wonderful weekend!

                           ***See below for some important messages***

from Mrs. Z:

Birthday Wishes
April 6-21

We are collecting birthday celebration supplies for our local food shelf.  Families who use our local food shelf often are unable to buy extra items
that make a birthday special,like
Cake Mix & Frosting, Candles, Rice, Noodles, Cookie Mix, Pizza Crust mix,
Paper Plates & Cups. Gluten-free, Kosher and Halal items are often needed by families as well. 

If you would like to donate,
please bring items to school April 6-21.  Thanks!

And Mrs. Bailey:

April 2017

Dear Lower School Parents:

Each year, I invite parents to provide input into the class placement process for their children.  If you wish to share your thoughts with me, please send me a letter or an email by Thursday, April 20.  The timeliness of this information is very important, as we will begin this process the following week.  Therefore, letters received after this date will not be considered for the upcoming school year.

A few important things to remember:

·       Please write your child's full name and grade next year at the top of the letter.  *If writing about more than one child, please send a separate letter for each student. 

·       Share your insights about friendships to foster or separate, your child’s learning dispositions and/or temperament, and the type of environment you feel your child thrives in. 
(You may want to share feedback on what has made this year particularly successful for your
child, or if this has been a challenging year, what you believe may have contributed to this.) 

·       Requests for specific teachers will not be considered.

Several factors are taken into consideration as teachers and the administrative team place students into next year’s classes.  Summer moves and other changes impact class assignments.  Thank you, in advance, for respecting and trusting our decisions.

Best regards,
Peg Bailey

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