january 22

In Literacy, our grocery store is really coming along! This week, we will collaborate with math -- finding the correct shelves on which to put the grocery items. We will organize them according to the item’s size and shape. We will also play our new Alphabet Toss Game.

In Math, we are moving our shape study into the grocery store.  We are going to work on stocking the shelves by shape - identifying all the groceries by shape and then sorting accordingly.  We are also hoping for some nice weather, so we can take our shape detective work outside and search for shapes in our neighborhood.

In Science, we will continue to work on our moving story boards about the growth of plants. We will also open the water table and begin to talk about water, ice and animals that live in the arctic. We will read the book Adrift: An Odd Couple of Polar Bears (written and illustrated by last year’s visiting author Jessica Olien) and talk about caring for animals.

In Drama, we will continue our community service unit with an animal rescue story, loosely based on The Three Snow Bears by Jan Brett. The children will create a shelter setting for homeless animals to provide food, homes, and medical care.

In Art, shhh…it’s a secret! The children will continue to work on their Valentine’s Day projects!

In Music, we are working on a bunch of new songs! We are beginning to learn the movements with partners to Miss Mary Mack and we have also begun learning the song Fruit Salad originally by the Wiggles. In Fruit Salad I incorporate a memory game component, where the children try to list and then try to remember the fruits they want to include in the fruit salad. We have also begun learning Yellow Submarine and we change the color of the submarine over the course of the song.  Recordings of these songs will soon be up on the website, so that the children can practice at home.

The Twos had a fun week and were able to go out for a walk in the neighborhood and play with some new toys. We read Wait by Antoinette Portis and Little Excavator by Anna Dewdney. This week they will have a turn using the water table.

In ASL, we will learn the signs for Circle, Square, Rectangle and Triangle.


January 16

In Literacy, our grocery store is still open! We will continue to add to our store by making more signs for the items for sale and writing and illustrating a book about what we can do in the grocery store. 

In Math, we will become shape detectives. Last week, we spent time learning about squares, rectangles, circles, triangles, rhombuses, and trapezoids.  This week, with clipboards in hand, we will search the classroom for different shapes. We will use charts and tally marks to record the results. If the weather cooperates, we will take our search outside as well.  

In Science, we will continue to observe our plants and care for them. We will make a moving story board about the growth of plants. This project is often called a cranky and involves a box that has the back and front cut out like a TV. The children draw and dictate a story. The story is then recorded on a scroll and connected to dowels, so the pictures move. We visited the bird feeders that we made before the vacation and noticed that all the soy nut butter and bird seed had been eaten. We may need to make more feeders.

In Drama, we will begin to focus on serving our community and helping others this winter season. In January, I will base some stories on children's literature, but focus on specific actions to shelter or rescue animals from the cold in stories like The Mitten or The Three Snow Bears. We will also talk about community workers in the city who serve us by plowing the streets. I will be incorporating set pieces and props in this exploration.

In Art, shhh…it’s a secret! We are beginning work on our Valentine’s Day projects!

In Music, we are working on a bunch of new songs! We are beginning to learn the movements with partners to Miss Mary Mack and we have also begun learning the song Fruit Salad originally by the Wiggles. In Fruit Salad I incorporate a memory game component, where the children try to list and then try to remember the fruits they want to include in the fruit salad. We have also begun learning Yellow Submarine and we change the color of the submarine over the course of the song.  Recordings of these songs will soon be up on the website, so that the children can practice at home.

The Twos joined their older classmates for an end of day dance. The older children each pick a two year old to be a partner. It was a very sweet moment, and everyone enjoyed the dance. Some of the books the Twos read this week were Mad at Mommy by Komako Sakai,  If You Were a Penguin by Wendell and Florence Minor, and Little Penguins by Cynthia Rylant. 

In ASL, we will review some signs we already learned.


January 8

In Literacy, our grocery store is officially open for business! We have a flyer to check out what groceries you want to buy, maps and aisle signs to help you navigate. We will also make our own grocery store list to help you shop. We will continue to add to our grocery store and of course, we will shop until we drop!

In Math, we will begin an in-depth study of shapes.  At the table, we will use shapes to begin making patterns.  Tangram cards will be added to the puzzle center to practice fitting different shapes together in different patterns.  Our shape study will support play in the block area, as we sort and clean up "by shape," and in the grocery store, as we figure out how to fit all our differently-shaped grocery items into the cart.

In Science, we will be following up with some activities that we had started before the break. We are still observing the plants/flowers that we planted about five weeks ago -- noticing the changes taking place, discussing the plants and doing some drawings of them. We started to talk about animals in winter, how they survive and how we can be kind to them. For example, we noticed right before the break that the birds had eaten some of the seeds on the bird feeders. So, we will continue to focus on animals and relating our discussions to our classroom theme of being kind, helpful and community-oriented. 

In Drama, we will use everyday objects (such as paper plates or tubes) to represent props. Children will take turns to choose an object and demonstrate how to use it for the group to guess. We will incorporate this work into upcoming stories about community and service. I will also be facilitating in the Grocery Store Center to encourage exchanges of dialogue between shoppers and cashiers or other workers. 

In Art, for our Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. service project, we will create beautiful gifts for the residents of the Cobble Hill Health Center.  We will work together to cover the outside of small boxes of tissues.  Once the box covers are created, the children will think of the things that make them happy.  To finish the project, these pictures, words, and thoughts will then be collaged onto the tissue box gifts.  

In Music, we are starting to learn about the concept of "hand games." I am introducing the song, Miss Mary Mack, and slowly teaching the children simple movements that coordinate with the song. I will introduce the older children to working with a partner on the movements.  This will be a slow progressing project that we will work on over the course of the next few months.  We also started learning the song, John Jacob Jingle Heimer Schmitt which is a bit of a tongue twister, and fun for the children to try to sing at different speeds.

The Twos will continue with music, art and other classroom activities and play some group games.

In ASL, we will learn the signs for: Mittens, Boots and Winter!