Our new STAR goal is about showing respect to others. After discussing what respect means, we came up with the following examples:
- Saying nice things to everyone
- Doing what an adult asks as long as it is safe, healthy and right.
- Helping others
- Showing empathy (trying to understand how the other person is feeling and deciding how to react to the situation)
We are busy learning to put our thoughts on paper to make a story. First, we think about what we want our story to be about. Next, we sketch (draw with no coloring) our idea. Then, we label our drawing. Finally, we add detail (coloring). It is important to make the pictures we draw match the story in our mind. For example, Miss Karen showed us her drawing and then told us her story. It was about her dog running away when she and her son were talking him for a walk. The children noticed she drew the dog and herself but not her son. So, Miss Karen added her son to her drawing to make sure the story in her mind matched her drawing. Good thing the children noticed and were able to help Miss Karen.
When we label our pictures, it gives more detail to the reader. For example, Miss Karen then wrote ‘dog’, ‘my son’ and ‘me’. Even though the children may have difficulty writing the words, I am encouraging them to listen for any letter sounds they hear and write them down. They may write ‘s’ for ‘house’ and that’s fine. Building confidence in writing is our goal right now.
We are reading and rereading some of our favorite stories. ‘The Three Billy Goats Gruff’ is one of our favorites. Below, the children are studying the pictures with a partner to retell the story in their own words. They are also looking for the words ‘Trip, trap’ that are repeated throughout the book. Just like writing, the children are building confidence in reading by retelling a story using picture clues. Retelling a story in your own words is a very important skill for beginning readers. I encourage you to listen to your child retell some of their favorite stories to you by studying the pictures and possibly finding special words that are obvious in the book.
In math, we are focusing on numbers. We played a game that involved putting candles on a birthday cake. It is a simple game that teaches addition and subraction. See if your child can teach it to you. You need something to write on that can be erased and a dice.
When children first start to read, it is important that they feel confident with books. Building this confidence to read means studying at the pictures and retelling the story in their own words. We have been building their confidence to retell a story with books like ‘The Kissing Hand’ and ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’.
We will also build reading confidence by using simple books with only 2 or 3 words on a page. The children will use the simple pictures, beginning letter sounds and length of words to make a reasonable guess what some of the words might be. It’s OK if they’re not always right. We are building confidence to make a reasonable guess.
Kindergarten math will be a combination of learning math through teacher directed instruction and self exploration. Both are very important to help children discover and reinforce math concepts appropriate for Kindergarten.
As part of our reading activity, the children have been helping me retell the story, ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’. This week, the children will take the book home along with some pictures to cut out. They can use the pictures with the book while retelling the story. The pictures can stay at home but please have your child bring the book back so other children can take it home tomorrow.
We have been working on some classroom goals like good posture during our meeting times, pushing in chairs, and putting snacks and water bottles away. Last week, I chose one goal (good learning posture ) to focus on. When a student demonstrated the goal 5 times (not consecutively), they received a yellow star. I am happy to say that everyone received a yellow star for showing good posture during at least 5 meeting times. Our next goal will be to return the green take home bag to school to encourage responsibility. After they bring it back for 5 days they will receive a star. The 5 days do not need to be consecutive. I would encourage you to help your child with this goal but do not do it for them. They need to know it is their responsibility to return it to school each day. I do, however, encourage you to remind them each morning or the night before to put it in their backpack.
Thanks to all the parents who were able to make it today for the Kindergarten Back to School presentation. For those of you who were not able to attend, please read through the following document. If you have any questions, please let me know.
Back To School Presentation-2d079ty
One of SIS’s ESLR’s (expected Schoolwide Learning Results) is to be an independent learner. Part of being an independent learner is making sure you are paying attention to the learning that is happening. To help children with this skill, they can earn a star if they have shown good posture during our meeting times (sitting up, hands to themselves, legs tucked in, eyes looking and ears listening). Your child will bring home a star that looks like this to show they have been showing good posture.
Taking one of our stories home:
In the next few days,, your child will bring home the book called, The Kissing Hand. Earlier on the blog, I talked about this lovely book. Please enjoy it with your child. Do not expect your child to read it. You read it to them and think about starting this new ritual with them if you choose.
Another one of my favorite books is ‘Mortimer’ by Robert Munsch. It’s about a boy who doesn’t want to go to sleep. He makes lots of noise instead. Everyone tells him, “Mortimer, be quiet” but instead he sings, “Clang, Clang, rattle bing bang gonna make my noise all day.” When people go up the stairs to tell him to be quiet, they make the noise ‘thump, thump, thump, thump, thump, thump.’ I am helping the children say the ‘th’ sound correctly by sticking out their tongue when saying ‘thump’. In the end, Mortimer waits for someone to tell him to go to sleep. But no one does. So he falls asleep on his own. Below: the children have fallen asleep like Mortimer.