It’s December and cold weather is finally upon us. Please make sure your child is bringing a warm coat, mittens or gloves, and a hat every day. When the snow hits they will also need snow pants and boots to play in the snow. The black and red bags that were sent home at the beginning of the year would be great to transport all their gear to and from school.
Art with Mrs. Robey will continue on Wednesdays through the end of the year. We have also begun Guidance classes with Mrs. Rodine on Tuesdays. These will continue through the end of the second trimester in March.
In math we have been identifying, creating and extending patterns, working with pennies, identifying missing shapes in a matrix, comparing objects by weight, and telling time to the hour. We have just begun to use the geo boards to create geometric shapes. We will continue these skills in December. We will also work with graphs, practice verbalizing our thinking when we solve a problem, identify cubes, estimate, identify and use dimes, work with half and whole, and solve problems by guessing and checking.
In reading we have new reading groups. All the groups are working on reading books at their reading level and decoding (sounding out) words. We will be learning many new sight words during the month of December. Please practice the words at home with your child. Some ideas for practicing sight words include:
- Writing the words on index cards to create a memory game.
- Using old magazines or newspapers and highlighting or underlining the words.
- Saying a word and having your child spell it for you.
- Making the words with magnet letters.
In our whole group reading we will be working on text organization and summarizing, cause and effect, questioning, and inferring.
In writer’s workshop we have started using some new materials. During the month of December we will be describing pictures, drafting labels, telling about a picture using captions, and drafting story sentences describing an event in a story. We will continue to practice writing letters in handwriting.
In science we have started our Wood and Paper unit. The kids have already had a lot of fun identifying different wood samples and the trees they came from. We will be experimenting with wood in the month of December. We will observe what happens when wood gets wet, attempt to sink some wood through a trial and error experiment, and discover different ways we can change wood.
In religion we will focus on the Advent and Christmas Seasons. We will make Advent wreaths and talk about waiting for Jesus. We will talk about why God sent Jesus to us. We will also prepare for the Live Nativity on December 19th at 2:00. We will be working with the 8th graders for this special presentation. Please join us if you can.
In social studies we will be talking about our world. We will be using location words (above, beside, far, near, etc.) to describe where things are. We will also be using maps and learning how to locate land and water on a map. We will make our own maps and share them with each other.
- December 6 – Out of Uniform (Bring donations for St. Joseph Shelter)
- December 16 – Advent Music Program 2:00 in the church
- December 19 – Live Nativity at 2:00 in the church
- December 20 – Out of Uniform (missions, bring $1)
- December 24-January 2 – Christmas Break!
November is here and bringing colder weather.
Our Wednesday special will continue to be technology until November 14. At that time we will switch to Art with Mrs. Robey.
In math we have been sorting, counting, identifying patterns, and solving story problems as a group. We have been talking about shapes and creating patterns. We made a matrix and discussed how we can use it to find a missing shape. We also worked with ordinal numbers. In November we will continue to work on these skills. We will also add identifying and using pennies, writing money amounts to 10 cents, comparing objects by weight, telling time to the hour, creating geometric shapes using a geoboard, and using words to explain how we solved a problem.
In reading we have been working hard in our small groups to enhance our reading skills. Our whole group lessons this month will focus on characters and setting, drawing conclusions, prediction, summarizing, and evaluating a story. We will also work a lot on blending and segmenting words (putting sounds together and pulling them apart.) We will focus on the new sight words my and like. Our letters of the week for this month will be t, b, n, and h.
Writer’s workshop is really fun. Many of the kids beg for more time to work on their stories. Most of them are including words on their papers. I always encourage them to write the sounds they hear and it is amazing what they can do! In November there will be a couple of opportunities for the kids to write using a prompt or sentence frame. This means I will give them a topic to write about or part of a sentence for them to finish. So far the majority of their work has been “free writing.” I allow them to write about any event from their life. This can sometimes be a tough transition but I think they are ready for it. I will still leave plenty of time for free writing throughout the month so they can continue to tell me their stories. We will also continue to practice letters in handwriting. The kids especially like making the letters in sand before we write them in their books.
In science we will finish up our work with leaves and move on to discussing other things that come from trees. We will talk about nuts, seeds, fruit, and flowers. We will discover foods that come from trees and even try a few! We will also visit the trees on the grounds and at the park to discuss how they are changing as winter approaches. This is actually the beginning of our “Trees Through the Seasons” section of our Trees unit. We will have to wait until winter and spring to complete the rest of the section.
In religion we have begun learning the Our Father. I am happy that many of the kids already know this important prayer. We have been discussing the meaning behind the words as we learn each section. The kids have been making a book that will go home at the beginning of the month. If your child does not already know the prayer please use the book to practice it at home. I will be assessing them. This month our religion lessons will focus on God as our Father. We will talk about why prayer is important and how and when to pray. We will also be talking about taking care of God’s gifts. Our bible story for this month will be Noah’s Ark.
In social studies we will be talking about friends and leaders in our lives. We will learn about two important teachers in history, Annie Sullivan and Mary McLeod Bethune. We will review our talks about rules at home and in school. In preparation for Thanksgiving we will learn about the Native Americans and how our lives are similar and different from theirs. (The kids will discuss Pilgrims in first grade). We will also have our first unit test.
- November 5 – Home and School meeting 6:30 in the gym
- November 8 – Out of uniform
- November 16 – End of first trimester
- November 20- Pilgrim and Indian day
- November 21-23 – NO SCHOOL HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
- November 29 – Out of uniform (missions, bring $1)
Can you believe it is already October? It seems like the school year just started!
Our Wednesday special schedule has been revised. Beginning in October we will switch from health with Mr. Bender to technology with Mrs. Risvold. This is different from the information I gave you before. We will continue technology classes until mid-November.
In math we have been busy writing our numbers and working with our manipulatives. We have been sorting items, creating graphs, and answering questions about graphs. We did some story problems together and made patterns with linking cubes. One of our favorite activities was making designs with our pattern blocks. We even used the smart board to play a pattern block game! In October we will work a lot more with patterns including sound and movement patterns. We will learn how to make a matrix and figure out which object is missing from a matrix. We will do a lot of work with number writing, identification, and order. We will also continue to work on all the skills we started in September.
In reading we have established all our routines for whole class reading and small group centers. This was very evident on the day I had to have a substitute. The kids let her know exactly how to do things in our room J. The kindergartners are doing a great job working in their small groups. Each group is making progress on the skills they have been focusing on. This month our whole group lessons will focus on making predictions, sequencing events in a story, and summarizing. We will continue to work on beginning sounds with a different letter emphasized each week. We will also begin working on sight words.
We have started our writer’s workshop. The kids are busy “writing” their stories. Right now we are focusing on drawing a picture about something that happened to them and trying to add some words or beginning sounds to describe the picture. In handwriting we have completed the first chapter which focused on how to hold a pencil, the positional words we will use when practicing the letters such as above, beside, and under, and drawing some of the strokes we will be using to make the letters. This month we will begin practicing one or two new letters a week. We will start with the lowercase letters first.
In science the kids have done a great job learning the parts of trees. We have discussed the different shapes of trees and what they need to live. This month we will shift our focus to leaves. We will talk about how each tree has different leaves and compare the leaves from different trees. We will talk about the changes that trees go through in the fall and why leaves change color.
In religion we spent September focusing on God and his love for us. We discussed all the gifts he has given us through creation. We also talked about our talents as gifts from God and played talent charades. In October we will learn the story of creation and also begin learning the Our Father.
In social studies we will continue to talk about families. Most of you have sent your family pictures. We will be putting the display up next week. We will also talk about our classroom as a community.
In October we will have our first field trip. We will be visiting the pumpkin patch.
- October 4: Out of uniform
- October 12: Track and fun day
- October 15: Field Trip to Howell’s Pumpkin Patch
- October 16: Conferences 4:00-8:00
- October 18: Conferences 1:00-8:00 NO SCHOOL
- October 19: NO SCHOOL
- October 25: Out of uniform for missions (bring $1)
- October 31: Halloween party 2:00-3:00
Wow! The school year has just begun and we are already so busy here in kindergarten. We are quickly learning classroom and school routines. Thank you parents for working with your children at home to establish a homework routine.
The students have enjoyed their health classes on Wednesdays with Mr. Bender. At the end of September we will switch to art with Mrs. Robey.
In math we have been working with many of the manipulatives we will be using throughout the year. We have been “skywriting” our numbers and learning how to sing the songs that go with them. During the month of September we will begin writing the numbers. We will also work some more with our teddy bear counters, introduce linking cubes and patterning, and use pattern blocks to create designs. We will sort several different items and create class graphs. We will also work on some story problems together. You can help at home by reviewing your child’s math sheet each night and asking them to tell you what they did in class.
In reading we have been working hard to learn our routines for whole class reading and small group centers. I have also been busy assessing your child to see what skills we need to focus on first. Next week they will begin working in their skill groups and learning some of the reading center activities that they will be doing each week. During the month of September our whole group time we will focus on the skills of comparing and contrasting characters and stories and noting important details in a story. We will also begin working on beginning sounds in words and rhyming words.
Writer’s workshop will begin in September. We begin with pictures and encourage the children to write about the pictures. Many of them are not ready to write but you would be surprised with the work they can do by the end of September. During our writing time we also work on handwriting. In your meet the teacher night packet there are sheets with examples of each letter. I will introduce the letters in a specific sequence according to the strokes they use so they are easier for the students to learn. Letters with similar strokes will be grouped together as we learn them. Occasionally the students will have homework for handwriting. Please refer to the pages in your packet when you are helping them with this.
In science we have begun our unit on trees. Throughout September we will be talking about the parts of trees. We will also discuss and experiment with leaves. We have our own tree that lives in our room. It is a rubber tree. The students will be in charge of taking care of it throughout the year.
In religion we will focus on God and creation. We have already made collages of the things that God has made by cutting pictures from magazines. They are quite beautiful. We will talk about God’s love for us and all living things. We will also make our own creation books and watch a movie about creation.
In social studies we began our year talking about rules at home and at school. This will continue through the beginning of September. We also made All About Me books and learned a lot about each student in the class. During September we will begin talking about families and what makes each one special. Parents, if you could send in a photo of your family we will be making a display in our classroom.
- September 3: Labor Day NO SCHOOL
- September 5: Ronald McDonald assembly
- September 6: Out of uniform
- September 7: School bus safety
- September 11: QSP assembly
- September 19: rosary @ 2:30
- September 20: Out of uniform for missions (please send $1)
- September 24: NO SCHOOL
- September 27: Picture day
May is here! We are going to be very busy as we finish up our year. If your child has not already told you we have another new student. His name is Preston. All of the kids have been very good about helping him out. He is a wonderful addition to our class.
On the 2nd we will have our last health class for the year. On the 9th we will begin our last set of art classes. The kids are looking forward to working with Mrs. Robey again!
Our math lessons in May will include a lot of review. We will be working with money, measurement, data analysis and probability, addition, and tangrams. I will also reassess any skills that students did not pass the first time I tested. Please work with your child at home to make sure they can count to 100, identify a cube and sphere, and identify nickels, dimes and pennies.
Reading is one of our favorite times of the day. The kids are very excited when they are given a new book to read and they are getting very good at figuring out words when they get stuck. We continue to work in our skill groups with Mrs. Dunn, Ms. K, and Mrs. Leonard. To help your child become a better reader they should be reading at home every day. As you work with your child at home you can remind them of the strategies we use in class to figure out unknown words. They can skip the word and come back to it. They can look for parts of the word that they know. They can use the picture to help them.
In writing we have been working on writing to a prompt and using sentence starters. I give them the beginning of a sentence and they must finish it. Many of the students have been writing so much I have had to give them extra paper! We are still working on sounding out words and listening carefully for the vowel sounds in words.
Science has been our most exciting part of the day. We finished our work with worms and moved on to isopods. We had isopod races and it was very exciting! Our duck eggs are developing nicely. Their due date is May 16th. Just like people, they do not always follow the calendar so the kids know they may come a day early or a day late. We have been keeping a close eye on them as they grow. The kids were really excited to look inside the egg with a special light and see the ducks moving!
In religion our focus is on living like Jesus. We will spend the rest of the year talking about ways to show our love for others. We will also discuss the sacrament of baptism.
In social studies we will continue our unit on the United States. We will wrap up the year with a unit on special holidays!
May 3: out of uniform
May 9: Mass by Kindergarten
May 17: out of uniform (missions)
May 21: Kindergarten round up (no school for current kindergarteners)
May 23: Mass by Kindergarten
May 28: Memorial Day NO SCHOOL
May 29: Field trip to zoo and Dairy Zone
May 31: last day of school
April has begun and we are so busy in Kindergarten. We have a new student in our class. Her name is Sage. All of the children have been very kind and welcoming towards her.
Our last rotation of health classes will begin this month and continue through the month of April.
Our math lessons in March will include the new concepts of division, tangrams, and spheres. We will continue to practice the concepts of measuring, identifying larger numbers, graphing, addition and subtraction. Some of the students are still having difficulty counting by fives and tens to 100. Please practice this skill at home with your child.
Reading has become very exciting as we have been exploring books and reading together. We are working hard and gaining lots of reading skills. We continue to work in our skill groups with Mrs. Dunn and Mrs. Leonard. Ms. K will be joining our reading centers at the beginning of April to help as well. To help your child become a better reader they should be reading every day at home. As you work with your child remind them to sound out the words and use the pictures to help them. Also, ask them if they see any parts of the words that they know. For example, we know that “ay” at the end of a word makes the long a sound because we see it on the calendar every day when we do the days of the week. The word “pit” has the word “it” hidden inside it.
In writing we have begun writing to a prompt. Our first attempt was very successful and we will work on more this month. As we continue to sound out words we will work on making sure our words contain middle sounds as well as beginning and ending sounds. Vowels have been tricky but we are getting much better at remembering which sound goes with which vowel.
In science the fish have been very exciting. We observed their behavior and compared goldfish and guppies. We were pleasantly surprised when the guppies had babies! We will be studying land snails next. Because they are classified as a pest in the state of Iowa we can not import the snails here to study them. We can however study them through a video that FOSS has provided for us. We will also be working with worms. In mid April our duck eggs will arrive. It will take 28 days for them to hatch so we will not see the ducklings until mid May.
In religion our main focus has been on the life of Jesus. We will wrap up this unit with Holy Week and Easter. On Friday, April 6th we will have our Lenten Retreat Day. We have many exciting activities planned. After Easter we will move on to the topic of our church family. We will also discuss the Ten Commandments.
In social studies we will begin our unit on the United States. The children will be creating a folder full of symbols and information about our great country. We will also be discussing Earth Day and ways that we can care for the Earth.
April 5: Out of uniform
April 6: Lenten retreat day
April 9: No School
April 19: Out of uniform (missions)
April 25: Mass by Kindergarten
In like a lion and out like a lamb. March has begun. Here it is almost spring. How the year has flown.
We have begun technology classes again for our Wednesday rotation. The students are learning to gather information from the internet.
Our math lessons in March will include the new concepts of data analysis and probability, measurement, division, and three-dimensional objects. We will also introduce the nickel and counting by fives. We will continue to practice the concepts of capacity, graphing, length, and patterning.
In reading we continue to work in groups. However, instead of being more skill based we are starting true reading groups. Each group will have books at their level to read and discuss. We will still work on skills but they will be incorporated into our work with the books we are reading. The students will also continue to work on skills with Mrs. Leonard and Mrs. Dunn in their reading centers.
In writing we have been focusing on putting words in sentences and making sure our sentences match our pictures. Most of the writing the students have been doing has been free choice. They have been given the opportunity to write about whatever they want. For the third trimester we will shift our focus to writing to a prompt. I will give the students a specific topic and guidelines and they will complete a writing assignment.
In science we are beginning work with our Animals Two-By-Two unit. It is a very exciting time of the year as we begin to introduce different animals into our classroom. We will start with fish. The students will learn about goldfish and guppies. We will study their behavior, compare them to each other, and learn to care for them.
In religion we are starting our unit on Jesus. We have already discussed some of the miracles Jesus performed. We will be learning about some of his parables and other stories from the Bible. Our unit will focus around living like Jesus and many of our discussions will include the question, “What would Jesus do?”
During the Lenten season we will join the rest of the school on Wednesday afternoons at 2:30 for Stations of the Cross. You are welcome to join us.