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Feb. 1-5 February 1, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — mrsmarshallkd @ 11:27 pm

Some photos from sledding today! Great day, great class, great time!

Just some reminders about the week ahead:

No School Tuesday as it’s a Professional Development Day.

-Show and Share notes went home Please check your child’s backpack/notes bag. There is a calendar with everyone’s name on it. We’ve all been assigned a day for Show and Share. If your child misses it, we may not have a chance for them to make it up.

Letter V this week

-Sight words for the month: with, come, here

Here’s to a great week!

Mrs. Marshall



Sand Play and Scientists

Filed under: Uncategorized — mrsmarshallkd @ 6:56 pm

Sand Play and Scientists

I once read an article that captivated me. As I was reading it, all I could think of was the children in my classes over the years who play with sand. And I thought of all of the times we’ve had to defend the practice of play as well as playing in the sand throughout the years. This article, Riddles In The Sand was written in 1996. Maybe more research has been done on sand. Maybe scientists and physicists understand how sand works now, at least more than they did in 1996. But as I read it, I was reminded that children are scientists. Children are physicists. Children are engineers. Every day, across the world, children are involved in theorizing, in planning, in trying out theories, and in finding ‘proof’ for their discoveries.

I was captivated, am still captivated, by the article, by the medium of sand, and by the idea that children are scientists. That is the purpose of this blog post. I wanted to put pictures to the words. I wanted to give credence to children and their play. I wanted to show that just as physicists and engineers theorize and experiment with materials, the idea to experiment, to theorize, begins in childhood. It begins with play.
Riddles in the Sand
Physicists completely understand a solitary grain of sand. Why, then, are they at a complete loss to explain a mere handful of the stuff? 
“That not even a physicist can explain why sand behaves the way it does seems astonishing. Sand is neither invisibly small nor impossibly distant; observing it requires neither particle accelerators nor orbiting telescopes. The interactions of grains of sand are entirely governed by the same Newtonian laws that describe the motion of a bouncing ball or the orbit of Earth about the sun. The odd behavior of a layer of sand bounced up and down on a tray should, in principle be entirely knowable and entirely predictable. Why, then, can’t Behringer [the physicist mentioned in the article] simply take a bunch of equations describing the motion of all of the individual grains, put them in a very large computer, and wait–for years, if necessary–until it spits out a prediction?” (p 2/9)
“Because the language of physics does not contain a vocabulary for granularity, engineers must treat granular material as either a liquid or a solid. These approximations work most of the time, but occasionally they lead to disaster….when the grains come to rest against one another they form intricate, quasi-self-supporting structures. That is why adding more grains to the top of a silo often does not increase the pressure delivered to the bottom at all, but rather increases pressure outward agains the sides of the silo.” (p 3/9)
“Engineers who design buildings and roads, on the other hand, assume that under stress the supporting (and granular) soil will behave like a deforming solid, much the way plastic does. Once again, this convenient approximation occasionally leads to disasters.” (p. 3/9)
“…if engineers understood the physics of soil better, these disasters might have been avoided.” (p. 3/9)
“If you really want to describe what sand is doing in any given situation, you have to know which modes are dominant and which sets of equations you’ll need to employ…. (p. 7/9)
“You just have to recognize that not everything you do is going to shake loose major pieces of knowledge… But collectively, and on rare occasions, experiments will come along and make a significant impact. It’s like looking at a distribution of avalanches- you have a lot of little ones and, every once in a while, a big one.” (p. 9/9)
(*all notes are from the article Riddles in the Sand by Fred Guterl, November 01, 1996. All pictures are mine)

Music Fun January 29, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — mrsmarshallkd @ 6:42 pm

As many of you probably know by now, we enjoy singing in our class. I’ve occasionally record us singing and reciting poems, and I thought you might enjoy a couple of samples.


Our first poem inspired our snowmen shown above (click on the link, the slide may download to your computer):

Funky Snowman

And our song “Snowflakes are falling down” is a special favourite. We made crystal “snowflakes” to go along with this song:

Here is the link to this song:

Snowflakes are falling down

Have a great weekend. The weekly update will go out later this weekend, but remember to plan for sledding on Monday!


No sledding today

Filed under: Uncategorized — mrsmarshallkd @ 10:46 am

No sledding today, but it sounds like Monday might be a great day for it! So, let’s plan on that- Sledding Monday, Feb. 1.

Remember that there is no school on Tuesday Feb. 2 as it is a professional development day.


January 25-29 January 26, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — mrsmarshallkd @ 1:19 am

It’s been a pretty busy few weeks in our class. I thought I’d share some pictures of what’s been happening.

We’ve combined our Science and Kitchen Centres into one to create a Science Lab. We have magnet activities, 5 senses activities, and things to build robots with! It’s a fun place to be!


We had some fun marble painting, then we turned the painted paper into forest in winter for a bulletin board

We’ve been reading some books by Jan Brett, especially The Mitten and The Hat. One day, during quiet time after lunch, I showed them a video by Jan Brett about how to draw a hedgehog. Now, we have a classroom decorated with Hedgie!


Now on to this week:

We’re talking about:

-the number 7

-the sight words look, and, come

-the letters J and I

-and many, many other things!

I’m hoping to go sledding on Friday, but it’s not looking too promising right now. I have told the class that if we don’t get to go Friday, we will go the first day we can. Winter is long, I am sure we’ll get more snow before too long.

Guided Reading is going well, I hope you’re enjoying it as much as your children are. I want to remind everyone that our books need to be back by Thursday, Friday at the latest. We have a limited amount of guided reading books, and when we don’t get them back in time we can’t do some activities, and there aren’t enough books for the next group who may need them.

One question I get a lot is, “My child won’t be in today, is there anything we can do at home?” And my answer is almost always this: Give them paper and pencil/crayons/markers and have them write a story, or have them look for sight words in books. These are two very simple things that can happen pretty much anywhere!

Other than that, everything is great! If you have any questions or concerns, please let me know!

Mrs. Marshall


January 18-22 January 18, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — mrsmarshallkd @ 3:09 pm

Sometimes I wish you could all be flies on the wall in the mornings when your children are coming to school. I wish you could see the joy on their faces when they see their friends, and hear the excitement in their voices when they talk about things they’ve done at home. Teaching Kindergarten is truly the best job in the world, and I am so grateful to have your children in my class this year.

We have some fun activities planned for the week. They include:

Making crystal snowflakes

Making snowman pictures

Learning about the letters T and I

The sight word Look (which has been in many of our guided reading books)

Sending home the next round of guided reading books

Learning about numbers, how we can break them into parts and manipulate them

Reading more stories about Hedgie the Hedgehog

And then there are all of the things that will happen that we don’t even know about yet!

I’m looking forward to this week (and cross your fingers that we still have snow on the 29th for sledding!)

Any questions or concerns? Let me know!

Mrs. Marshall



December 15 January 14, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — mrsmarshallkd @ 3:08 pm

Tomorrow, December 15 will be jersey or sports clothing day. Wear your favourite team jersey or shirt tomorrow! I’m deciding between my Blackhawks shirt and my Cubs shirt. Or should I wear my Bears shirt? No. They didn’t do very well this year ;)

Also, as a reminder, when sending pudding, soup, apple sauce, anything requiring a spoon- please pack a spoon!


Mrs. Marshall



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