Monday, April 17, 2017

Last Friday we started our day off with our GRAND FINALE for Reading Week!  This assembly included Mr. Snyder in a cow costume riding a miniature tractor across the gym,
followed by a presentation by Stensland's Family Farm (complete with cheese curds!),
every student TK-6th grade doing the Cotton Eyed Joe dance!
 I am sure you heard that the BEST thing that happened during that assembly was the kids earned the chance to duct tape Mr. Snyder to the gym wall!

It was very fun and he is a super good sport!!  (we let him down right away!)

Miss Emily came in and talked to us about bees.  She explained the different jobs and what each of them do for the good of the hive!
Miss Emily explaining the jobs of bees

guard bees keeping Miss Emily (the intruder) out of the hive while construction ants work on the hive

Queen Bee Gracelyn accepting the nectar from forager bee Brystol

Nurse bees taking care of the larvae 

In the afternoon we did a few "experiments" surrounding our topic of the week: SPIDERS!
We learned that spiders have a special oil on their legs that keeps them from sticking to the web.
To put this theory to work, we had a piece of tape on a plate- we pretended our fingers were bugs and they got stuck on the web.  Next we dipped our fingers in a little bit of oil and our fingers glided right across the tape!

Next we learned how spiders "liquify" their prey with a special venom they have.  To figure out what this means, we used a sugar cube, an eye dropper and water.  Dropping water onto the sugar cube made the sugar cube dissolve much like the "innerds" of a spider's prey.  Needless to say, we did several sugar cubes!!  :)

We also threw some "prey" (pom poms) at a spider web (hula hoop with tape sticky side out) to see if we could get them to stick.  This was pretty much just for fun but helped us use our large motor skills in throwing!! :)

And finished it off with an exact replica (well, sorta) of a spider!  8 legs, 8 eyes..... for a snack!

Lucy is our STUDENT OF THE WEEK  this week.  Lucy has 3 sisters!  2 big sisters and one little sister.  She loves the color red- does NOT like snakes and wants to be an artist when she grows up!  Lucy brought in several pictures for us to oooo and aaaaah over- our favorite being a cute close up picture of her eating watermelon!
Thank you for bringing in pictures and helping us learn just a little bit more about you sweet Lucy!

Wednesday we had fun doing several Spring/Easter activities including making bunny helicopters!  I told the kids that this was their one chance to STAND ON THEIR CHAIRS and not get in trouble.  The kids needed to adjust the ears on the rabbit to make it spin just right.  After a few minutes of trial and error, most of the kids had it figured out.

One of the kids figured out if you held it a certain way it almost always rotated!  Such little experimenters!!

Next week: (April 17)
Student of the week: Marissa
Snacks: Ella and Ellie

Week of April 24
Student of the week: Memphis
Snacks: Elliss and Evie

Please be sure to read the colored notes that were in your child's folder on Wednesday, April 12.  They are very important!

Field Trip information will be coming home the first part of May.  There is a note regarding an opportunity for you in your child's mail from Wednesday.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017


And as luck would have it, the letter S is what we are working on this week!

All 3 of our teacher led literacy centers were centered around seeds and plants.  Mrs. Gerber's group learned about stems and their importance to plants.  Mrs. Moen's group found pictures of plants and animals in magazines.  They sorted and talked about how plants and animals are similar and how they are different.  Mrs. T's group learned about seeds and how they have seed coats that fall off when they start taking on water.  We looked closely at lima beans that had been soaking overnight.  We found out that they were much easier to take apart and the seed coat slipped right off of them.  Once we got the soaked bean's seed coat off, we looked at the inside and found the seed food storage and the little plant - some of our beans even had the beginnings of leaves!  (and of course, we had a station of iPads!)( No pictures this week- sorry!  We were really into our lima bean seeds and I forgot to break away to snap some pics!)

We started a couple of experiments on Monday.  The first one was to "plant" some lima beans in a baggie with a wet paper towel in it.
We taped them to our window and were excited to see on Wednesday that some of the seed coats were coming off already!  Hopefully we will see some roots and stems growing by next week for sure!

The second experiment we did was relating to stems and how they move the water and nutrients up from the roots to the leaves and blossoms, so we took some celery and looked closely at the ends of it.  We could see the tubes that ran from the bottom of it.  We then put 6 different celery stalks in 6 different colored waters.
Pretty quickly we saw the celery in the red cup start turning red.  It was very exciting and on Wednesday, well... I know it is hard to see in the picture but in person, it was very impressive!!

We continued to work on seeds on Wednesday and learned how seeds spread (insects, birds, wind, and our favorite: the hitchhiker seed!  You can imagine the lively discussion that ensued after talking about hitchhikers... in relation to pets!!  :)  I tried explaining what a hitchhiker was in relation to people- happily that is a thing of the past it seems.  (I'm old.  So very old.)

We then worked our fine motor skills to the bone by tracing and cutting 8 handprints.  We actually did them on a folded piece of paper so we only traced and cut 4 times, but we worked really, really hard on a handprint flower.  Complete with roots, leaves, stem and blossom.  OH!  AND LABELS!!!
It was so amazing to see the kids show off their amazing writing skills!!  WOOP WOOP!

The end of the day found us down in the FFA room at a petting zoo for a special treat during READING WEEK!  We had SO MUCH FUN!  We saw a rabbit, dog, puppy, horse, bull, goats, chickens, fish, guinea pig, pigs... it was awesome!  (we even got to listen to the dog's heartbeat with a stethoscope!)  THANK YOU FFA!

TK ON FRIDAY, APRIL 7!  Blue and Gold day to support FFA!  PE and Brystol has snacks.

Kai is the STUDENT OF THE WEEK this week!  Kai likes the color blue, playing outside, his family and pets.  Kai is not a big fan of snakes and spiders.  He has a big brother and a little brother and when he grows up he wants to be a hair stylist.  He told me he would do my hair for me when he gets his own salon- he didn't say it would be for free, but I am thinking that is what that implies! :)

Thank you for sharing your pictures with us, Kai and for telling us a little bit more about you!

We did NOT do the "book in a baggie" this week.  (so don't panic!) We will get a new book next week.

Student of the Week: Lucy
MONDAY: LIBRARY  Art  Snack: Camrie
WEDNESDAY: Music  Snack: Cora

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Literacy centers were our focus on our Monday morning in TK.  Mrs. Moen's center focused on listening for the ENDING sounds in words.  Some groups were allowed to do the activity on their own with little help and some groups need a little more direction- which is all okay!!  :)
Mrs. Gerber's group worked on writing their name
Mrs. T's group worked on the "book in a baggie".
Nearly everyone remembered to bring the books back!  YAY!!  Keep up the good work!  Every group hinges on the other groups to remember to bring back their books, so please do your best to return them!

AAAAAAND of course, iPads!

Dotters helped us make caterpillars with a certain number of parts for their bodies.  Some of us got a little excited and carried away with the dotters and put in too many body parts, but we learned we could just "X" them off if that happened.

Wednesday we worked really hard on the letter G!  We read a funny story about a goat named Gregory.  He and his parents didn't exactly see eye to eye on what was a good breakfast, lunch or dinner.  We talked about how we don't always see why our own parents want us to eat healthy foods.  We did discuss that unhealthy food is okay if we don't eat it ALL of the time.

We practiced writing Capital G on Wednesday.  Capital G uses the "magic C" to start it as does the lower case c (which we also practiced).  This is a little tricky, and we will work on it again- but encourage your child to make that magic c to get G and g going in the right direction.

Jessa is our student of the week this week.  She has 2 big sisters and she brought several pictures for us to look at and tell us a bit about her!  She does not like snakes (high five on that one), she likes the color turquoise and she wants to be a farmer when she grows up!
NEXT WEEK IS READING WEEK!  We will have special dress up days (a paper was sent home on Monday explaining the different days.  There is also a list at the end of this post that explains the days AND it is on our Snack Calendar that is coming home on Wednesday afternoon.  (see the next paragraph)

Your child will have a snack calendar in their folder on Wednesday night for APRIL AND MAY!  (they are back to back on the purple sheet)  PLEASE keep track of it and when it is your child's turn to bring snack.

You will notice in May that our field trip is planned for May 10.  I will be sending out more information about this in the coming weeks, but if your schedule allows it, ONE adult may accompany each child on our field trip.  It will be a packed full day of fun and activities so if you can join us- please plan on it!  ONE adult (no younger siblings, please) per student only.  If you cannot go, please do not worry about it!  We stay all together as a group and there will be plenty of adult supervision- it's just an opportunity to tag along on a fun (exhausting) day with your TKer!  :)

Please remember to send back your child's "book in a baggie" by the following Monday.  The book should remain in the baggie and when your child returns the book, he/she will get a new book to bring home and dazzle you with.  I have limited numbers of these books so I really need you to be sure to send them back as the next group of kiddos will need all the copies I have to get their next book.  If one child doesn't bring the book back, I am short a book for the next group.

Student of the Week: Kai
MONDAY: Comfy/Cozy Dress Up Day - "book in a baggie" - LIBRARY  ART  Snack: Allie
WEDNESDAY:Tractor Day- (Wear color of your favorite tractor) MUSIC  Snack: Bodee
FRIDAY: Blue and Gold Day  PE  SNACK: Brystol

Friday, March 24, 2017

OUR EXPERIMENT WITH THE EGGS WORKED!!  It was so exciting and so fun to see.... that I completely forgot to take a picture of it!  The vinegar dissolves the egg shell.  Milk and water did nothing to the shell.  What is left is fragile (we found that out the hard way) and the insides are still very liquid-y (again, found that out the hard way) but remember we had TWO eggs in vinegar so - NO WORRIES!!  It is a bit rubbery to the touch (GENTLE touch) but one of the "coolest" things we've done so far for a science Friday!  It was a complete success and the perfect way to start our discussion of OVIPAROUS animals!  Your kiddo is very excited to tell you about this exciting word we learned today!

After touching the rubbery egg- we talked about animals we thought laid eggs.  We had quite a list and then we watched a short Sesame Street video about animals that laid eggs.  Our list grew a bit more.  We watched baby octopuses hatch from their eggs, chicks hatch from their eggs and turtles hatch from their eggs all on our smartboard.  We then read a book about oviparous animals and our list grew even more.

We made a WHEEL OF OVIPAROUS animals to share with you after we had found plastic eggs around the room.  Each egg had a different animal that lays eggs in it.  (and true to Mrs. T's luck, I hid the eggs SO WELL, that we couldn't find one of them- we eventually did find it and unfortunately we had a classmate go home sick so we didn't actually NEED that egg, but that is typical for me!  OH WELL!)
We opened the eggs one by one and shared with our friends what the animal was.

For snack today, we made "nests" out of pretzel sticks and everyone was given a handful of eggs (jelly beans) to put in their nest.

As an extra special addition to our OVIPAROUS animal day- Ella's mom and siblings brought in a few of their new chicks to show us!  These chicks were black and red and not what we thought they would look like- but we learned that chicks and chickens aren't all one color!! :)
THANK YOU, ELLA and FAMILY for sharing your chicks with us!

It was an exciting day in TK and learning about OVIPAROUS animals!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Mrs. Moen came in on Monday and we were able to do our Literacy Centers.  Mrs. Moen had a very important and exciting group as she handed out books to the kids and read the predictable text with each group.
The most exciting thing about this group was not being such an amazing reader, but that the kids got to take the books home to read to someone in their family!  These books should be returned and next Monday, the kids will hopefully get a new book!  (Just like at the library, kids will need to bring back their book before they are issued a new book)
Mrs. Gerber did an opposites activity
Mrs. T worked on RHYMING words
and we also had a group of iPads

We were able to go to the library and also the computer lab on Monday.

Jameson has a new baby brother and since Jameson got really sick right after his brother was born, we didn't get a chance to meet him until now!  Thank you, Jameson and mom, for sharing your new baby brother with us!

Wednesday we worked on the letter Q.  And of course, Q is almost ALWAYS with U.  We wrote several words on the board that started with Q (there aren't a lot) and every time it had a U right after the Q. We decided they LOVE each other just like when you get married!  :)  SOOOOOO we made a Q bride and U groom.  We colored and cut them out and stapled them to sticks.  And to make it official, we walked them around the room to the HERE COMES THE BRIDE song!  :)  

QUILT was the object that we focused on as we looked at several different quilts.

We observed how small triangles put together could make larger squares and if they were turned on their sides, they looked like diamonds.  We observed how the quilters used different shapes and combined them to even make other objects- like stars and flowers.

Next, we read a story called THE QUILT MAKER'S GIFT by Gail deMarcken.  It is a little bit longer of a book than we normally read, but the pictures are so beautiful and the story is so good, we were able to listen to the whole thing without tapping out!! :)

After the story, we paired up and got a bag of pattern blocks and experimented with taking shapes and trying to make new shapes out of them.  We did pretty well with that but the fun happened when we used pattern block pages that had the colors and shapes already made into figures like turtles, butterflies and birds, to name a few!

We actually did this TWICE during the day because it was so fun!

I have a few quilts that I had brought in for our morning introduction to Q and quilts and one of my favorites was made by my friend Mary.  Mary lives in Larchwood so I called her this morning and begged her to PLEASE come talk to us about how she makes quilts.  She out did herself as she brought in pieces of a quilt she is currently working on, small squares that she has sewn together to make bigger squares and still more sewing to make yet bigger squares.......
She showed us the batting that she puts in between the quilted side and the fabric backing and how the quilting looks on the back and front.  She had a farm themed quilt, a flower quilt, an Alaskan Nature quilt, a football themed quilt and a couple of others.  We took a vote and had our picture taken with the Alaskan quilt!  Thank you, Mary, for coming in and telling us all about your amazing hobby of quilting!

TK ON FRIDAY!  It will be an exciting EARLY DISMISSAL DAY (11:40) as we began our FRIDAY SCIENCE DAY already with an experiment that HOPEFULLY will not be a dud!
 It seemed like it was working this afternoon............ so stay tuned!  Ask your child about the eggs in water, milk and vinegar!  :)

NEXT WEEK: Student of the Week: Jessa

MONDAY: Library  MUSIC Snack: Memphis