Sunday, February 28, 2016

A few pictures from the week

Here are a few pictures from the last week! Just to give you a random sampling of what we do in our kindergarten days :)

Writing together in small groups during our intervention time

Sorting the ways to make a number!

A painting project to show our favorite winter activities

Visiting our 4th grade buddies' classroom for "Read on Chromebook" time.
Our buddies showed us various websites where you can read on the computer, including Book Flix, Tumble Books, and PebbleGo. They also read us their skin color poems, which resulted in an impromptu writing of some of our own skin color poems!

Monday, February 22, 2016

Numbers in the teens...they start with a 1!

We've been doing lots of study on teen numbers in math these last few months. Teen numbers are tricky for kindergarteners. Unlike the other double digit numbers, whose name matches the order that you need to write their digits (for example "forty-two is written "4-2" and "sixty-two is written "6-2") the teen numbers are reversed. You say the second digit first when you speak the number out loud! For example, "sixteen" is actually written "1-6," even though you say the word "six" first. Thus, many kindergarteners read and write their teen numbers backwards, even when they can write all the other numbers correctly.

We've been watching this video every day during math to try to remember that teen numbers always start with a 1. We also play lots of games, like the second video below, to help emphasize that teen numbers are made up of one group of ten, and some ones. This is an important first step in understanding place value in early math.

Here is the song:

And here is a game called Critter Junction that we played today to practice place value:

Here are some more photos of us doing math lately!

Practicing one-to-one correspondence with numbers
Subtraction with Pete the Cat!
We read the book "Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons"
Counting by tens
Making teen numbers

Sunday, February 14, 2016

100th Day Celebration

Last week was our 100th day of school! It's hard to believe how fast the year is going by. Here are some pictures from our celebration. We made crowns, 100-item trail mix, and 100-dot paintings.

Here's a great picture of the whole class: 

We also celebrated Valentine's Day this week, plus the high school dancers came to an all-school assembly and chose some of our classmates to dance! It was a big week. Here are some pictures from those celebrations as well.

So much candy!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

What do we know about weather?

We have been studying the weather these past few months, as part of our science unit, as well as during reading and writing time. Every morning our calendar person checks the weather, and we're tracking how many types of weather occur in a one-month period. We kicked off the unit by looking through non-fiction books and brainstorming what we already knew about weather.

The kids were particularly interested in extreme weather, like tornadoes and and hurricanes. We talked about what people need to do during extreme weather situations, and then drew silly creatures and what they would do :)

We are also reading non-fiction books in Readers Workshop time, and we learned that readers often ask questions about the world before they start reading. We brainstormed some "I wonder" questions, and wrote them on the Wonder Wall. In order to answer our wonderings, we can seek out non-fiction books on the topic!

We also did several experiments to learn how weather works. We read several books about the wind, and did an experiment called "Will the wind blow it?" where we tested different items to see what we could blow across the table. Then we read a book that said wind is just air that you can't see - but it still has a force! We blew up plastic bags and felt the air pushing back at us when we zipped them up and pressed on the bag. Then of course we got to pop the bag when we were done.

Then we did a demonstration that showed that air (which makes wind) does indeed have weight! We blew up two balloons, one with more air than the other, and hung them both on a hanger to see which one weighed more.

We used a bubble map to summarize what we've learned about the wind so far.

The kindergarteners were especially interested in tornadoes. While reading a non-fiction book, one student found directions for how to simulate a tornado, so we decided to do it as a class! Afterwards we did a shared writing piece on How to Make a Tornado in a Jar.

We'll continue to learn more about the weather, including what it means to predict the weather, how clouds give us rain, and how the sun affects our earth. Stay tuned! Meanwhile, here is our exploration table about the weather: