We decided that we don't want to wait for spring! Even with all our indoor recesses and cold temperatures, we can spring spring inside! One Friday, we sorted and talked about lots of different seeds, and tried to match the seeds with the pictures on the packages. We took turns filling planting cups with potting soil, poking a hole in it to make a seed nest, putting in seeds, and carefully covering them with a layer of soil. We will take turns watering, observing, making predictions, and recording our findings. We hope this leads to rich investigations about farming and food! We have several farming experts in the class (like Dylan), and we are learning to be food experts by tasting different things more than once, and comparing it to tastes we already know.
Brrrr!! When we can't go outside, we bring the outside in! Take a look at how we started two different science explorations. One of them is our science centre, and for the next few weeks we'll be trying to heighten our sense of touch by closing our eyes and letting someone touch an object to our cheek. Here are the probing questions: What was it? How do you know? What are some words that describe what you felt?
We've also been bringing ice and snow inside, and finding out what happens when we add salt, sand, paint, or water. We tried different tools to see what would happen. We found out that if we waited a bit till the snow got 'melty', it is better for building! We learned a lot of things about the properties of snow, ice, and water.
Every week we are always excited about some aspect of our program, but this week we are SUPER excited about our Movement Centre! The physical development of children is immensely important to overall health and wellness as children and on to adulthood. Sadly, it's often overlooked and shunted to the side when our outside equipment is closed during the winter, when it's too cold to go outside, or when we can't get to the gym. But developing balance, strength and flexibility doesn't just happen on it's own! How do we solve this problem? By creating a classroom space for movement breaks that includes all the best elements for physical development. THIS is where most of our share of the fundraising money went from our poinsettia sales. We're so proud to hear children articulate what is happening to their bodies as they move, how it helps their emotional feelings inside, and if they NEED to be there to burn off extra energy. We are listening to our bodies, and giving our bodies what they need!
There are 3 main reasons to use this centre. Some children need a movement break. Some just want to have fun exercising their body. Some are sent there instead of a 'time out' (sitting quietly is probably the opposite of what they need). Some want to regulate their zone if they feel frustrated or angry and know moving vigorously will actually work to calm them down. Read below to see what the children said about their new centre! Their answers are completely natural and unscripted.
As we learn about Ontario animals, we've noticed a terrible problem. The snow has frozen hard, making it difficult for small animals to peck, paw and nose around to get to their food sources underneath! We decided to do what scientists do: we would work in a small group to design an animal feeder, build it, put food in it, and take it out to the yard so we can observe if we are helping any animals to keep their bellies full this winter.
Every group chose an animal to help, and designed a feeder out of recyclables that would help that specific kind of animal (will it hang from a tree or does it need legs to stand on?). We used our plan to assemble our feeder, and we'll add it to our Science Journal. The fun part will be visiting our feeders soon to look for telltale signs that any animals have been eating from our feeders! We have so much to learn about the natural world in our own backyard.
This is the kind of activity that gives us a great idea about your child as Scientist, Speaker, and Designer. Click on the pictures to see what we're saying about our design, our part of the work, what will happen, or what we are doing.
If anyone in your house watches Kids CBC, you may already know about Judy and David, our favourite movement and math Canadian celebrities! Here they are showing us what Jiggijump is all about:
On Thursday, the Jiggijump dancers came to Tos and gave the Kindies a special performance. We're excited to use their CDs in class and keep moving over our long winter! Enjoy the pictures of us doing what we love doing best: being kids! If you look closely you will notice our favourite Mrs. Wells was a star with her guitar and blue wig!
Welcome back to a new year! 2015 is going to be a great one. We've spent a lot of time communicating by talking with each other and experiencing books and media together, and now we're going to learn how to communicate with each other in writing. Based on their stage, each child has been placed in a Writing Club that lets them focus on what they need to develop next. Some will be working at drawing pictures with detail, using a mirror to remember all our body parts and what we're wearing. Others will be able to start labeling their work using sounds they know. Another group will be able to print the whole label using beginning, middle, and end sounds, and yet another will be printing full sentences. As the year goes on, we'll change groups a lot as we work towards one or two full sentences. We use something called Planning Lines to make it easy and to be our 'scaffolding'. Whatever stage we are at, one thing is the same: we use the calendar and our memory to visualize something that happened in our own past, and plan, talk, do, and retell about it. We'll make samples available here. Enjoy the pics below! We're proud of what we can already do!
We loved our Christmas centres! Every year we love to do all our Christmas crafts and activities together as a Kindergarten division, and break into small groups for rotations. It's wonderful to see how the different group dynamics work with the classes mixed together and different parents running different centres. Similar to our Hallowe'en centres, we plan math, language, gross motor, fine motor, and arts connections to all our activities. Thank you so much to all the parents who volunteered their time to come and help out!
We've been getting ready to perform in our annual concert! Each year, we celebrate our music, dance, oral language and social skills by showcasing several songs and poems on the stage for everyone to see. This year, we used the handbells to sing and play 'Jolly Old St. Nicholas', and performed 5 Little Elves, the Reindeer Pokey, Rudolph to the Rescue, and We Wish You a Merry Christmas.
It was a lot of fun to also perform for our grandparents. Every year, we give out tickets to our Grandparent's Tea, and perform in the gym the day before our concert. We like to share refreshments with them after and give them a tour of our room. Grandparents are a big part of our lives and we like to send them messages to know they are loved.
If you have any photos or video of the Tea or Concert, please email it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can add it here. :)