Monday, December 18, 2017

I can't elaborate too much on what we were up to on Monday because it is a pretty big secret.  Sorry.  You will just have to trust me when I say- it will be worth it!  What I CAN share with you is that your little is bringing home a very special package... this package is from JUST your TKer.  We have been working on them for a while and today we wrapped them (atwopersonkeepyoursanity project as opposed to whatonearthwasithinkingineedhelp project)  So, with Mrs. Moen's help, we divided and conquered.  I say this every year and I sincerely mean it EVERY. YEAR.  This is hands down one of my most favorite things we do in all year.  The kids wrap their own present for you.  The present is the same size for all of the kids and they get the same size paper... but I let them fold and tape as much as they want/need.  This is their present to you and it is made and wrapped in love!  :)

We did a tricky pattern page of presents for math.  Several lines of ABC patterns- so we really had to be careful!

The highlight of our day was getting together with our 5th Grade Reading Buddies!  They made us a little game that we are bringing home and we get to keep!  We had hot chocolate and candy canes with them for a special treat!

Well, Cheer and Emily (our classroom elves) had to go back to the North Pole before the snowstorm comes.  They were busy watching a movie with some Barbies Monday morning when we got to school... we went to the library this afternoon and when we got back- THEY WERE GONE!  They left us a note telling us they had to leave and they left a book and a candy cane for each of us.  We are sad to see them go but they are definitely very busy!!!

Jacob is our WOW this week.  He likes the colors blue and orange and wants to be a farmer like his dad when he grows up.  Jacob does not like the dark or scary movies and some words that describe him are kind, loving and helpful!  We would agree!  Thank you, Jacob for sharing your pictures with us!

I will TRY to get a party day update... but those days are CRAZY at best, as you can imagine!  If I don't get an update in... have a very Merry Christmas and I will see your kiddo on Wednesday, January 3!  Gabriel has snacks!!

Friday, December 15, 2017

Miss Emily came in before the first recess and did NOT talk about hibernation.  She emailed me yesterday and she had a different topic to discuss this time (which of course, was fine by me) so when she got here she sang the kids a cute little song and taught them a new SCIENCE word... SCAT!  Scat is the science word for animal poop.  She had a great book that really was interesting and had lots of different kinds of animals, their footprints and their scat.
The HANDS ON thing that Miss Emily had us do was... (you know this is gonna be good, right?) She gave all of the kids a tootsie roll and they molded their tootsie roll into the shape of the scat on each of her book pages!

She also had several pelts of the animals in the book, so we also got to touch those!

We love our time with Miss Emily!

After recess, we jumped into our studying of animals in winter and how they survive.  We spent a considerable amount of time on hibernation in the morning.  We read a couple of stories about hibernation, crawled into a cave and slept like a bear (snoring)
and how bats would hibernate,
and then made a little craft with the letter H as the center of attraction in a hibernation scene.
We also worked on an emergent reader that the kids will be anxious to read to you.  There is one more small book for YOU to read to your child about animals in winter and can further discuss what we learned about today!

The afternoon brought our discussion to migration and adaptation.  We talked about how some animals move from where it is cold, or will be getting cold (like Iowa) because their food sources will freeze or get covered with snow, and migrate South.
We also talked about how geese will fly in a V formation.  We all huddled in the North and then got in V formation
and "flew" around and around and around the room (so everyone could get a chance to be the front goose braving the wind for the rest of us) and FINALLY we arrived in the South where it was warm and we each could find a small stash of fish (crackers) to eat!

We also discussed adaptation of some animals like growing thicker fur, gathering food before it snows and some animals change colors to help them blend in with their surroundings!

Next week:
WOW: Jacob
Snacks on Monday: Erin  Library and Music
Wednesday: PE  party at 11:45

In your child's things Friday afternoon, you will find a 1/4 sheet of paper that looks like this...
if you DON'T see it...  THERE IT IS! :)
This will explain to you about our classroom gift exchange again.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Mrs. Moen came in on Monday and we changed things up a smidge and only had TWO stations to rotate through.  The tasks were a little more complex, so we spent more time on them and really tried to listen and hear what we were practicing!  Mrs. Moen's group worked on rhyming
and Mrs. T's group worked on listening for the beginning sound of pictures and identifying the letter that makes that sound.

We did some Christmas patterning for math and went to the library, music and the computer lab!

Wednesday we read a great story called THE MAGIC HAT by Mem Fox.  It has a catchy phrase that it always goes back to, rhyming words and the illustrator made some great pictures that gives clues as to what the rhyme will be!  We read it twice and picked up more and more clues from the pictures and from the rhymes.

We then tackled a fun Christmas hat book but it is somewhat "labor intensive"! :)  It takes a while to finish because each page has something special that needs to happen to each of the hats.  After we got the book assembled we cut the book into faces and hats and now it is a great FLIP BOOK!  We had fun switching the hats with the faces!

We also did a listening activity and colored a gingerbread man according to the choices given to us by the directions.  There were almost always 4 choices to listen to before we decided which one we would choose.  The direction sheet we used is in our folders so you know what we chose and why we colored our Gingerbread man the way we did!  :)


Miss Emily from the Lyon County Conservation Office will be coming in the morning and she will talk to us about HIBERNATING animals!  :)
HAM!  Hibernating/adapting/migrating animals will be our focus for the day!

Next week:
WOW: Jacob
MONDAY: Library  Music  Snack: Erin

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

We were off and running on Monday with Mrs. Moen here to help us accomplish a fun, but too much for one adult to manage, activity.  We started off our literacy time by reading a story about Santa getting stuck in the chimney of a house.  The animals of the house and Santa's reindeer try to get him out but it was a little mouse with a big idea that finally got Santa out of the chimney.  We then made a Santa that was stuck in a chimney and wrote down our own ideas of how we would get him out.
Mrs. Moen was a vital ingredient of getting this project done during our literacy time and not extending it into math time and lunch time and rest time and recess... :)

We graphed some holiday cookies and talked about more/less and equal.

Wednesday we read a sequel to the story MOOSESTACHE... this one is called MOOSELTOE.  In this episode of Moose's adventures, Moose forgets to buy a Christmas Tree in all of his hustling and bustling and realizes it is too late to get one, so he lets his kids and wife decorate HIM!  We reviewed the letter M and how to make it and the sound it makes and made an adorable MOOSELTOE of our own.

For a patterning extension activity, we created a pattern (it could be anything using the three colors of red, green and white) and then MADE it into a chain for a countdown to Christmas.  We actually did 20 loops, so you can have your kiddo take one loop off already (or you could do it on the sly tonight) because most of our patterns were ABAB patterns and those work/look most right with an even number of loops.

Grady is our WOW this week!  Grady loves the color blue and to play with his Bat Cave.  He does NOT like candy canes.  He wants to be a baseball and basketball player when he grows up and then he wants to coach baseball and basketball!  Grady really likes Batman and that was evident from many of his pictures that he brought in!  He also brought in one picture of what happens to his face if he eats something that he is allergic to... this is a picture we are hoping to never see in real life!
Thank you, Grady, for sharing your pictures with us and helping us to learn just a little more about you!

MONDAY: Library MUSIC  snacks: Brayden
WEDNESDAY: PE  snacks: Burkelle
FRIDAY: ART  snacks: Eden

Friday, December 1, 2017

Our Friday (science day) didn't actually happen until this afternoon.  We still had some "N" things to finish up beforehand.
We practiced listening for the /n/ sound with a really big picture full of things that started with that key sound.  Lots of things are the "official name" (ie: Necktie, Notebook, Nightshirt, etc.... if it's colored, hopefully you will be able to figure out what the /n/ word is! :O) )  Then we practiced wrting the capital letter N on our magna doodles.  That led into us reviewing ALL of the letters we have done so far.  SOME of us are all over it... others... not so much.  :(

After our noon recess and rest time, we put our coats, hats and mittens BACK on and trekked out to the football field where there are lots and lots of trees for us to observe.  Our first job was to just LOOK at the trees.  We were specifically looking at the pine trees.  We looked at the needles and then felt them to see if it was prickly or not... the first tree was!

The 2nd tree we looked at and then felt, was not as prickly but its needles were longer- and it had WAAAAAY more pinecones on it.
We also discovered a 3rd tree that was different than the first two that also had sort of prickly needles but they were even shorter than the 1st tree.

We then filled our pockets with pinecones (you're welcome) and brought them back into the school and put them in a baggie to bring home.  (You are welcome yet again... just as an FYI- there are more things to be put in the bag that I will get to soon!)

We then talked about that the pine cones are not the SEEDS for the trees but the protector of the seeds.  We watched a quick little video on how to get the seeds out of a pine cone and then we did it!
 It was great fun and I'm pretty sure your child is going to want to show you how it's done.  We used a white piece of paper to collect the seeds and it made it much easier to see them.

We also did a quick melting candy experiment using a peppermint on a plate and warm water.  It "melts" and makes a colorful design much like the Skittles experiment.  There is a peppermint in the pinecone baggie so you can try it at home.  :)

Finally, one of our experiments was called DANCING JINGLE BELLS!  THIS, my friends, was the perfect experiment to show that scientists don't always have things work the way they're supposed to.  We first used SQUIRT pop (because that is what I had at home) to make our jingle bells dance.  The bells are in a tall glass jar and you pour the pop in.  Squirt is not exactly clear, but the bells really danced (even though we couldn't see them clearly)  NEXT, after Music, I was able to find some Mist Twist from the concession stand.  I told the music director, "I will take these warm ones on the floor.  I don't need your cold ones in the cooler."  So, our 2nd attempt at DANCING JINGLE BELLS was under way.  THIS time, unbeknownst to us, the reason the pop was on the floor was because IT WAS OLD and had lost its fizzy.  Soooooo, that did not work either.  Attempt 3 had an emergency SOS Email sent to the band director who brought us NEW Twist Mist in a jiffy!  Attempt 3 was much more clear to see the dancing bells, but they didn't exactly "dance"... it was more of a slow (very slow) waltz.
Every once in a while a bell would dance to the top and then drop.  Life as a scientist.  So, there is a bell in the pinecone/candy baggie also.  I'm not sure what to tell you.  The fizzier the pop, the more dancing.  However, you need to be able to see them dance too, so.... good luck!! :)

Mr. Knueven came in at the end of the day for Challenge Time.
The TK December Snack/Specials Calendar is in your child's things this afternoon.

As a HUGE heads up: We will do a Christmas Gift Exchange on December 20 (TK's last day before Christmas)  The suggested price is $3-$5.  Boys will bring a gift to be exchanged with another boy and girls will bring a gift to be exchanged with another girl.  We will NOT draw names.  We will play a little game to mix the gifts up and will open them up after we are sure no one has their own gift. Again, this is for December 20 and the tag will simply say
TO: BOY FROM: Kacen  or
TO GIRL From: Avery

WOW: Grady
SNACKS: Zylex and Avery

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Monday we were lucky to have Miss Emily from the Lyon County Conservation Board come talk to us with a fun learning time about COYOTES!  Miss Emily read us a book about coyotes
and then did a little puppet show for us with a coyote and a wolf.
Finally, we finished up our time with her playing a little game about coyotes that was similar to RED LIGHT/GREEN LIGHT.
Thank you, Miss Emily!

Our room has transformed into a winter wonderland... well, it's Christmafied anyway.  We made the Grinch that we will be counting down the days until Christmas on with little heart stickers.

We have been working on the letter N and read a funny story about a little mouse with a BIG name, CHRYSANTHEMUM!  We then unscrambled letters in our own name and matched them to a strip with our name on it.  Then the challenge came... try to spell your classmates' names!  We "traveled" around the room and actually were able to attempt everyone's name in puzzle form.

Finally we had fun putting the letters of everyone's name into a ten frame so we could easily tell how many letters they had and then graphed it.  Both the 10 frame and graphing went super slick!!

We also have two little additions to our class.  They came in a box addressed to our TK room.  We opened it up and there were TWO scout elves who will be joining us until Christmas break.  Our first job was to name them.  The names we selected were Cheer (for the boy elf) and Emily (for the girl elf)  On Wednesday when we arrived at school... we found them... poor Cheer had been taped to the clock by naughty Emily!
Who knows what mischief they will get into in the coming weeks!  :)


WOW: Grady
MONDAY: Library  PE  Snacks: Zylex
WEDNESDAY: ART  Snacks: Avery

Monday, November 20, 2017

We had an exciting day in TK for our DAY BEFORE TK THANKSGIVING BREAK!  :)
Mrs. Moen came in and we were able to complete a book about a different colored turkey.  The book had several pages in it, so we read and colored it in TWO group rotations plus a station of iPads.

We had fun coloring (with our MARKERS) a turkey mask

and did a cut and paste activity with Thanksgiving foods and where they come from!

We went to the library and the computer lab and were also delighted to spend some time with our reading buddies from Mrs. Eliason's 5th Grade Class!

Gabriel is our WOW this week!  Gabriel has 3 brothers, one sister on earth and one sister in heaven.  He likes the color blue and cheese pizza but does not like carrots!  Gabriel would like to be a football player when he grows up.  One of our favorite pictures of Gabriel that he brought in was one where he had a pacifier in his mouth (when he was a baby, of course).  The whole picture had sort of a red tint to it, so we tried to guess if maybe he was under something when the picture was taken... Gabriel was very little so he didn't know, so we decided it was an umbrella to protect him from the sun! :)

Thank you, Gabriel for telling us about yourself!

Have a Happy Thanksgiving and I will see your kiddos on MONDAY, NOVEMBER 27th!

MONDAY: Library  PE  Snack: Trevor
WEDNESDAY: ART  Snack: Tristan
FRIDAY: MUSIC  Snack: Tysan

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

This week we have had fun reading books about Moose!  Monday we read the entertaining book called MOOSETACHE by Margie Palatini.  In this book, Moose has a very unruly mustache.  We all donned a mustache for a class picture and an individual picture after we finished the book.  Some of our mustaches were a bit unruly themselves - as in the "sticky" stuck too well to our lips when we tried to take them off!

For math we did some sorting and graphing of M&Ms.  First we worked on figuring out which color word we were reading and colored the circles on our sorting mat accordingly.  After we got the mat ready, we sorted our 2 small bags of M&Ms.  The kids are using lots of great words to describe what they are seeing during math time.  Our final job was to put the M&Ms on our graph and really start using all of those describing words!  :)

Wednesday we read another story called IF YOU GIVE A MOOSE A MUFFIN.  This story has quite a few cause and effect sequences in it.  We reviewed them and then went to work on an emergent reader that we are excited to share with you.  We have practiced reading it several times as the words change towards the end of the book.  Please encourage your child to point to the words as they read, make sure they are sweeping left to right also.

For math we counted blueberries and matched the numbers to the blueberries in a muffin!

Of course, no reading of this great book would be complete without making muffins of our own to eat!  I had one of the kids be my "assistant" and the kids thought that was the BEST word- so I used it quite often during the making of the muffins, so don't be surprised if your kiddo throws that word out there sometime!  :) (oh, and one more thing... these muffins were THE BEST MUFFINS EVER, sorry... I know how hard it is to live up to my fabulous TK cooking!! :) )

It was a delicious day in TK!

WOW: Gabriel
Happy Thanksgiving!