One of the first things people ask me at this time of year is, “So, how is your new class?” My new class this year is a dream. They are the best, parents, they truly are. We have had so much fun getting to know each other these past two months, and learning what makes us all tick. For example, I can tell you that we do free choice every morning when they first come in. We do great, we are always involved, we make tremendous choices and follow through with our work… for about 45 minutes. Like clockwork, I can tell when the wheels are about to fall off. And you know what? That’s awesome! We can clean up and move on to the next activity, no problem. And then, every afternoon at about 1:45, I know that whatever I have planned will fall apart. So I’ve started playing group games at that time. As a teacher, one way I know they have learned a concept is when they transfer that concept from their “work” to their “play”. I have been able to really watch these kiddos do just that this past month. But these things aren’t what makes this group so special. What makes them special is the way they stick together, the way they aren’t afraid to take chances, the way they like to help each other. This is a special group, parents, and I want to thank you and let you know how amazing they are.
I wanted to share some of their day with you here:
At the end of each day, we play a game called Countdown to 5 (after Christmas we will raise the number to 10). It’s a simple game where we count off from 1-5, and the person who is 5 sits down. We keep going until there is one player left standing. This game may seem redundant, but it teaches us so much about number sense: it teaches before and after, predictability, patterns, it solidifies our counting skills. On Friday during choice time, I looked over and there they were- playing countdown to 5 on their own! And, as you can see, they had a great time doing it!
They enjoy creating, from making books (see that mermaid? It’s a book about mermaids); to painting (as this one was painting, he was telling me the story of what it was- a very detailed story about a worm and what he was eating). In the block area, they were creating letters, and then evolved into making the worlds largest cruise ship (with a fascinating story about who was on it and how big it was).
All of this play, all of this creating is leading us to become great writers and readers. All of the language we use, the games we play, all give us a beautiful palette of words and descriptors that will help us as we move into the next stage of our development. I foresee a very exciting year in KD.
Now, to the week ahead:
We will be learning the letters a and g in Fundations and I will be introducing the trick word do. In math we will be finishing up number sense to 5 and starting patterns next week. We will be doing pumpkin explorations throughout the week as well. On Thursday we will be having our annual Halloween party. Children can come to school dressed in their costumes, but please remember- no weapons or masks that cover the whole face (making vision difficult) are allowed. We will be having a school wide Halloween parade starting at 9. We will have our class treats/party in the afternoon.
Here’s to the last week of October!