Saturday, October 20, 2018

Animals, Fire Safety and Another Celebration

This week we were treated to a visit from Curious Creatures.  These animals used to be someones pets.  We learned some interesting facts about a chinchilla (we watched her have her powder bath), a bunny, a snake, a skunk, a turtle, a frog, an alligator and bugs.  Everyone had a chance to pet these animals or touch them in a manner demonstrated by the instructor.  Some friends joined right in while others chose to look from afar.  You may have heard that Miss Bonne held a skunk cuddled up on her lap for an hour and a half.  The pictures speak for themselves.  The Whole Notes shown are having a wonderful time.

Our main topic this week was Fire Safety.  October is fire prevention month.  At circle we learned what to do if ever caught in a fire.  The children practiced "stop, drop and roll".  Fire pictures were created with paint.  You can see them along with children dictated fire safety rules posted on our classroom bulletin board.  Many "well loved" fire toys were brought in by Miss Jackie.  Much fun was had in acting out scenarios needing fire fighters to the rescue.  A fire engine floor puzzle could be put together.  At circle we became scientists lighting a candle and covering it with a jar to use up the oxygen, causing the flame to extinguish. Finally we tied all of this to literacy by drawing fire safety pictures and writing fire safety words in our journals.  Word cards about fire safety were at the art/writing center.  Friends who wished could use these to do more drawing and writing or make a book about our theme. 

You could make a home-school connection by continuing this information with your preschooler.  Show him/her where your smoke detectors are located.  Or have practice fire drills and choose a meeting place outdoors for all family members in case you are ever separated during a fire.  Another suggestion is to visit a fire station.  Most are receptive to a visit from this age group.

We celebrated again!  This time Leticia turned five.  Her brother Lucas from the quarter notes was elated to be her special guest for this event.   

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Journals, Science, Art and Birthdays

As you view the blog you will see that this week we began our journals which will be a year long project.  Once a week we choose a topic based on the theme we are discussing.  Each child becomes an illustrator and author in his/her own book.  For example the first page just completed is on the fall with each youngster drawing something about the season and then writing a word or two of description.  Some friends can write with no help while others need to trace over teacher drawn dots to learn the correct formation of the upper and lower case alphabet.  This is beginning literacy, both reading and writing, by connecting pictures with the printed word.  It is also preparation for kindergarten.  Each whole note member will progress at his/her own speed but when the journal goes home in June the growth made since September will be evident.

We also did a few experiments with wind in preparation for an art project to be used in the Suzuki school fund raiser.  One was to first blow into a straw in order to move a light weight ball, after which we then blew paint to create the hair on the head of a child drawn face.  It is hard to describe or envision but you get a little peek at this project from the photos.  Soon you will be able to have a chance to purchase the items shown on top of the cubbies as you enter the preschool but with your child's creation on them.

Finally we ended our week by celebrating Aarav's birthday with a special snack.  Happy 5th birthday to Aarav!

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Go With the Flow...

This past week was full of adventures.  For two of the three day week, we literally moved our classroom , thanks to the ingenuity of the teachers and cooperation from our classroom children.  In preschool we refer to unexpected changes as "zigzags" and hopefully are able to teach the group to relax and just "go with the flow".

On Wednesday the Whole Notes had one half of Miss Bonne's room.  Our circle time was literally in Miss Deb's office but none the less we discussed the different kinds of leaves from trees and their colors.  We sang songs about leaves and did our "Five Little Leaves So Bright and Gay" rhyme.  Ask your child about this one.  Each youngster cut out a leaf-some with assistance- which is great for developing fine motor skills-after which he/she turned it into a leaf person.  Arms and legs were made by accordion folding strips of paper, also good for muscle development and simply learning to follow directions.  Faces were drawn on the leaves.  Toys were either borrowed from other classrooms or brought in from our own room.  But you can see from the pictures that everyone was safe, happy and oblivious of our situation due to construction.

On Thursday we used a kesher room, once again making it into a safe and fun place.  We read a wonderful story at circle called "The Falling Leaves" in which the wind is kind to a yellow hickory leaf because the others such as orange maple are mean to it.  A discussion followed to transfer the leaf situation to all our friends with the moral: if you are kind to others, they will be kind to you.  Our project that day was to trace your arm and hand to create a tree and then tear paper (also great for muscle development) for leaves.  Again you will see Whole Notes with toys such as play stix, the doll house, little ponies, etc. brought from our room.

Finally on Friday we were in our home-very thankful to be there even if occasionally it was noisy on the roof.  We completed our fall talk by learning about squirrels: their habits, the name of their home, the use of their tail and more.  Did you know that squirrels can swim?  Your child may be able to tell you some interesting facts he/she learned about these creatures. Everyone created an original  squirrel with the use of shapes..  The three art projects mentioned in this  blog will be on a beautiful fall bulletin board put up this week.  Keep your eyes open for this masterpiece.