Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Thanksgiving Feast

We celebrated our Thanksgiving Feast today with the other Kindergarten classrooms!  It was a lot of fun!  Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 21, 2014

November 21, 2014 Newsletter

November 21, 2014

Dear Parents,

It’s hard to believe Thanksgiving is just next week!  We’ve completed almost all of our Native American and Pilgrim projects and are looking forward to our “Feast” on Wednesday.  Students will be dressing up in the costumes they have made and will eat their snacks in the cafeteria with the other Kindergarten classes.  Please be sure to send a snack with your child on Wednesday.  Lunch will not be served that day.  Dismissal will be around 11:15am.  Children will be riding home on their morning buses unless you have specified that you will be picking them up.  If you are planning to pick up your child, please walk across the paved hard top area to the cafeteria door to meet your child instead of the area in front of the main office.  Please be sure to send back the half day dismissal form if you haven’t already.  I’m sure it’ll be an exciting day for the students.

We will start practicing Nutcracker dances next week in preparation for our Nutcracker performance and field trip to the Nutcracker Ballet.  We are going to see the Nutcracker Ballet on Wednesday, December 17th.  We are planning to have our own Kindergarten Nutcracker Performance on Monday, December 22nd at 9:00am. An official invitation will go home on Monday but I wanted to make sure you marked your calendars ahead of time!  Also, please make sure to send in the $10 to cover the cost of the field trip as soon as possible.  It will cost $10 for the chaperones as well.  Checks can be made payable to Francis Wyman Kindergarten.

We started writing research reports on animals this week as part of our unit on informational writing.  The students drew and labeled pictures of their animals, wrote and drew about the animals’ habitats, what they eat, and how they protect themselves, and they will be sharing these with the rest of the class after Thanksgiving.  There is an additional piece of the report that needs to be completed at home.  I sent the paper home today and am asking parents to help their child find three interesting facts about the animal being researched.  I talked with the students about where to find facts... books at home or at the library or online.  I would encourage parents to read the texts with their child and help them to record the facts on their papers.  It is best to have the students do as much of it as possible, but parents are welcome to help where it is needed.  Students can use words and pictures to record their interesting facts.  It would be helpful if these facts could be returned BEFORE the conference day on December 4th.  Feel free to send them back whenever they are complete.

We have also been practicing our Readers’ Theatre a lot this week.  Students picked an animal, made a mask, and helped write the script and have been practicing it for a couple of weeks.  It is based on Bill Martin Jr.’s Polar Bear, Polar Bear story.  We videoed one group today and will do the other group next week.  I will try posting the videos to my blog when they are both done so you can enjoy them and see all the hard work that has gone into them!

We have been practicing teen numbers this week.  I sent home a Spin and Write game in your child’s blue folder today.  I showed students how to use a pencil and paper clip to make a spinner and I gave them two recording sheets.  Practicing the numbers at home will be very helpful!

A Book Fair flyer will be going home on Monday.  Feel free to look through it.  Our class will be going to the Book Fair on Wednesday, December 3rd to look at books and make wish lists.  We will send the wish lists home afterwards.  You can look at the wishlists and decide if you would like to purchase any of the books.

We have been talking a lot about things we are thankful for.  I just wanted to say that we are both very thankful to have such a wonderful class of students and also for wonderful parents who are so supportive.  Thanks for all you do!  Have a great weekend!

Melanie Duncan and Kerry Marsh

Friday, November 14, 2014

November 14, 2014 Newsletter

November 14, 2014

Dear Parents,

We've had another busy week in Room 115!  The students have been completing an impressive amount of work as we continue preparing for our “Thanksgiving Feast”.  We have completed most of our Native American costumes and have started learning about Pilgrims.  We read a story called “Samuel Eaton’s Day” which is about a day in the life of a Pilgrim boy and we will be reading a similar one called “Sarah Morton’s Day” which is about a day in the life of a Pilgrim girl.  We talked a lot about the chores Pilgrim boys and girls had to do and I tried to encourage them to be helpful at home too!

The Wednesday before Thanksgiving will be a half day of school.  Dismissal will be around 11:15am.  A form will go home on Monday for you to complete and return that will let us know if children will be riding home on the bus or getting picked up by parents.  Please return the form as soon as possible.  We will be having a “Thanksgiving Feast” on that day, which will consist of the students wearing their costumes and eating their snacks in the cafeteria with the other Kindergarten classrooms.  All costumes will be made ahead of time at school.  Lunch will not be served on that day.  We will also sing a few songs all together with the other Kindergarten classes.

It's hard to believe that it's already time to start thinking about all our December activities!  We will start practicing Nutcracker dances in preparation for our Nutcracker performance and to help our trip to the ballet be more meaningful.  We are going to see the Nutcracker Ballet on Wednesday, December 17th.  Please be sure to send in the $10 for the field trip.  We are tentatively planning to have our own Kindergarten Nutcracker Performance on Monday, December 22nd at 9:00am.  An invitation will go home once the date and time have been confirmed.

We will be starting a new writing project next week.  We will be researching animals and writing reports!  There will be a homework component to this, where students will need help finding facts about their animals.  Information will go home later about that.

We have been doing a lot with rhyming but I would encourage you to practice it at home with your child too.  You can ask them to sing “Willowby-Wallaby Woo” or listen for rhyming words in books or even just try to list as many words as possible that rhyme.  It would also be wonderful if you could help your child practice with counting, ordering, and writing numbers to 10 and even into the teen numbers.  We finished our unit on numbers 1-10 and will be moving on to the teen numbers next week.  Even simple things like counting stairs as they walk up them or counting how many bites of food they eat would be helpful!

I showed the students a website that has some great activities to support rhyming, early reading skills, and even math practice.  It is  I told them I would pass the address on to you.  Also, the password for the Scholastic Let’s Find Out papers is Duncan2014.

Have a great weekend!

Melanie Duncan and Kerry Marsh

Thank you for all the paper bags you have been sending in.  We have all we need for right now. We are now looking for paper towel tubes, as we are looking forward to start our Nutcracker unit. Thanks so much!

Also… Please make sure your child brings warm clothes to wear outside for recess now that the weather is getting colder and please help them practice putting all their stuff on too!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Family Collages

We have been talking a lot about families and things we are thankful for.  The students made big family collages that are now displayed at the back of our room.  They came out so great that I just had to share them!

Francis Wyman Library Web Page

Steve Levin, our school librarian, shared a link with our class this morning from the Francis Wyman School Library web page.  We wanted to make the web page more accessible to the students.  The link listed below will bring you and your child to many resources.  Today, the students used the Unite for Literacy link listed under eBook resources.  Enjoy and have fun exploring!

Friday, November 7, 2014

November 7, 2014 Newsletter

November 7, 2014

Dear Parents,

We were excited to have Mrs. Marsh back with us this week!  We all missed her very much!

It's hard to believe that Thanksgiving is only a few weeks away!  The children have started their Native American costumes and will be working on their Pilgrim attire in a couple of more weeks.  They have painted their vests and ponchos/mantels, and will make and paint clay pinch pots.  They will be coming up with their own Native American names and will weave place mats. They will also pattern their wampum necklaces and headdresses.

We will join together for a “Thanksgiving Feast” with the other Kindergarten classes on the half day of school before Thanksgiving.  Students will dress up as either Native Americans or Pilgrims and will eat their snacks for the day on their place mats in the cafeteria.  We will also sing a few songs.

We have begun a unit on families and have been talking about how families are different. Students have been making large family collages and have been writing about what they like to do with their families.  We have also been discussing how thankful we are to have our families!

Don’t forget… no school on Monday or Tuesday!  Happy Veteran’s Day!

Have a great long weekend!

Melanie Duncan and Kerry Marsh

PS…We will be going to the Library on Wednesday (first day back after the long weekend).  Please make sure your child has returned his/her Library book by then.  Thanks!