Friday, February 27, 2009

Our Sixteenth Post -- February 27, 2009

It is hard to believe that another month is almost over! The children are working so hard in class, and we are really noticing some significant improvements in their skills.

This week, Cassi Smith started her supply teacher position in our room. All of the children enjoyed meeting and working with Cassi. She completed the morning message routine with the class and she reviewed the literacy centres with the students. On Thursday, she also completed the calendar routine with the class. The children are getting very excited about the calendar routine because we are almost at our special days: the 101st and 102nd days of school. We have some special math and literacy centres planned for next week to help the children celebrate these special days.

In language this week, we continued to work on the concept of "point of view." The students are doing a fantastic job at understanding and communicating various points of view. Work at home with your child on this concept by talking to your child about what he/she might be thinking and what you might be thinking given various situations (e.g., if your child does not eat his/her dinner, if your child goes to bed right away, if your child breaks a valuable item, and if your child helps out his/her sibling, etc.). This is a great oral language opportunity!

In math, we continued to work on addition: not just being able to combine sets of objects, but also being able to discuss what it means to add sets of objects. This metacognitive step is really important. Many of the students are doing an excellent job at communicating their thinking. We posted an addition activity under the Activities link on the Kindergarten Website. Try it out at home with your child.

Have a wonderful weekend! We look forward to another exciting week next week!
Aviva and Cassi

Friday, February 20, 2009

Our Fifteenth Post -- February 20, 2009

Even though it was a short week, it was definitely a busy and exciting week in our room! On Tuesday, the A Class celebrated Valentine's Day with our special literacy and math friendship centres. They definitely enjoyed these activities as much as the B Class did. We also used Valentine's Day to introduce our students to our new school focus (SMART Goal): point of view. For one of our activities, the children had to make a pattern on a cookie using Smartie's or Skittles. We had a child help us introduce this activity to the class, and after the child decorated the cookie, we took the cookie, said how good it looked, and ate it. We took a photograph to capture the expression on the child's face, and then discussed with the class what we might be thinking and what the child might be thinking at the time when we ate the cookie. We explained to the children that this was pre-planned because we wanted to help them understand about "point of view." As one of our new literacy centres, the children are looking at the photograph of this event and drawing and writing about our thoughts and the child's thoughts. This activity definitely helped the children understand the difficult concept of point of view. In the coming weeks, you will hear your child talk even more about point of view.

On Wednesday and Thursday, we also introduced new literacy and math centres to the students. The children are very excited about these new centres. Try talking to your child at home about them. In the coming weeks, you will find information about these centres and photographs of these centres on the Kindergarten Website.

Have a great weekend!
Aviva and Dianne

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Our Fourteenth Post -- February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day everyone! We hope that all of you are having a great weekend with the people that you love.

It was another exciting week in our class. We finished our ninth round of literacy and math centres, and we have now posted guiding questions and photographs of these centres on the Kindergarten Website.

The B Class students also celebrated Valentine's Day on Friday with some special literacy and math friendship activities. As they packed up for home on Friday, they shared their thoughts about the day:

"It was the best day ever!"

"I had so much fun today!"

"I loved the centres."

"I can't wait to tell my parents all about the centres."

"I give today two thumbs up."

We hope that the children told you all about the fun activities that they completed on Friday. We know that the A Class children will enjoy their Valentine's Day celebration on Tuesday just as much. By next weekend (February 21st), we will post photographs and information about these special activities on the Kindergarten Website.

Have a great long weekend, and we look forward to another wonderful week next week!
Aviva and Dianne

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Our Thirteenth Post -- February 7, 2009

It was another exciting week in our room! Mrs. Kunz came back full-time this week, and all of the children were excited to have her back.

We started some new literacy and math centres this week, which included computer centres in addition to our SMART Board centres. In the coming weeks, we will also start using I-Pods with our students, as part of an I-Pod pilot project for the Board. More information about this pilot project is available under the News link on the Kindergarten Website. Our students respond really well to technology, and all of this new technology is helping the children continue to develop their literacy and math skills.

We also spent a lot of time this week continuing to work with the children on segmenting the sounds in words. This is in preparation for the Yopp Singer: this is a sound segmentation test that we need to complete with all of our SK students. Segmenting the sounds in words is a very difficult skill to develop, but with continued practice, the children are definitely improving. We had a "sound segmentation competition" with both the A Class and the B Class, and the children all had a lot of fun. Despite our best attempt to determine a winning group in both classes, all of the groups tied. As we said to the children, they are the "sound segmentation champions!" Have your children tell you about this fun competition.

In math, the children are starting to learn about the concept of addition: combining two smaller sets to make a larger set. We are introducing addition on the SMART Board with the use of five-frame and ten-frame mats. The children are talking about the results as we play different games using these mats. We are encouraging our students to use the language of addition: when we put ___ number and ___ number together, we get ___ number in all. We will continue to develop the concept of addition in the coming weeks.

Have a great weekend, and we look forward to another wonderful week next week!
Aviva and Dianne