Sunday, January 27, 2019

Our daily math time

We have a math block that is around 45 minutes every day in kindergarten, so I thought I would share what it looks like in our class! Each math block starts off with a warm-up of some kind, whether it's counting to a certain number together, mixing up a number line and putting the numbers back in order, or reading a math-related book. Then we have a math lesson as a whole group, where we learn a new skill, game or concept. Most days, the students practice the game or skill independently or in partners. 

Below, we learned about graphing and how to conduct a survey. Then students wrote their own survey with the question "What's your favorite color?" and went around the room collecting data.

When they were done, we got back together as a whole group and learned how to analyze the data - in this case, seeing which answer had the most, least, and same amount of responses.

After each lesson, we have "math tubs," six math activities that students can choose between. These rotate every couple weeks, and include everything from games we have learned during math lessons to math manipulatives (building materials such as blocks or polydrons), to card games such as Uno or Go Fish that use numbers and counting concepts. This part of the math block is especially meaningful for kindergarten learners, since it allows them to learn through play, and integrate ideas that we've learned previously through cooperation and exploration.

Below are some pictures of recent math tubs the kids have been enjoying!

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Art project fun

One of the most engaging times for our class is when we get to do projects that involve creativity. The kids get so excited when "art project" is on the schedule for the day. Below are some projects we did this week!

Loose parts creations

Making lists and searching for animal tracks around the room

Winter painting with q-tips

Investigating pushes and pulls

We began a new science unit exploring forces and motion! Our essential question is "What makes things move?" We shared thoughts on how to make an object move, by picking it up, blowing on it, pushing it, throwing it, kicking it. We ultimately decided that all these options were a form of pushing and pulling. The students found something in the room that they could use to demonstrate pushing or pulling.

We then drew a model of ourselves pushing or pulling an item in our science notebooks and used a label to write "push" or "pull."

The next day, we brought an item from home to demonstrate pushes and pulls! It was super fun to see what the students thought to bring.

Then we sorted our items by whether or not we pushed or pulled them, and then sorted them in a Venn diagram.

The next day we talked about larger items you can push or pull, like doors and chairs, and then sorted them as a group and later independently.

We'll continue our investigation next week, where our essential question will be "How can I make a ball move the way I want it to move?"

Saturday, January 12, 2019

New Years projects

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you had a great winter break. We eased back into school this week by doing lots of projects, including making some New Years fireworks and learning about animal tracks. We also read The Story of Snow, which taught us how snow crystals are made, and then made our own snow crystals out of pattern block shapes! Thanks especially to our special guest teacher (and parent) on Science Friday, who taught us all about how to identify tracks in the snow!