Classroom News

Week of April 25, 2016

What an eventful week back from break we had!  Monday was a terrific first day back.  On Tuesday, we celebrated another birthday and emotions ran high throughout the room.  The kids once again rose to the challenge of being Town Meeting hosts on Wednesday.  Thursday brought a few unexpected events which forced us to be a little flexible in our day.  Sunshine and warmth ended our week on Friday.

Each time we go to the playground, I am joined in the garden by one or more friends.  Some children help me dig up weeds and roots while others search for worms and jewels.  Next week we will till the soil and hopefully plant some seeds.  There has been some talk about what we should plant in our garden.  Carrots, lettuce, peas, peppers, strawberries, and blueberries have all been mentioned.

These last six weeks of school will give us the opportunity to prepare the space, plan and plant the garden, weed the garden, and hopefully taste some of the bounty.  While we won’t be at school each day during the summer, most of us will still be around.  Let me know if you’d like to help care for the garden during the summer and take home some delicious vegetables.

We had several “new” things in our classroom this week.  We made new play dough one morning and the children have thoroughly been enjoying its smooth, soft texture.  Dinosaurs have been hidden in the play dough to create birthday presents, eggs, and snacks.  We also looked at the different prints made by Diplodocus, Tyrannosaurus Rex, Pterodactyl, Stegosaurus, Triceratops, and Dimetrodon.

Clay was another new material enjoyed by many.  The children were not deterred by the very moist substance.  They kneaded and pounded, flattened and smoothed the clay.  A few animals were created, but it mostly served as an exploration.  An empty paper towel box provided an opportunity to create a boat.  The boat was first colored and then adorned with buttons (stickers).

Lego Classic pieces led to much new building and construction.  As the pieces were initially sorted by color, the first creations were mostly monochromatic.  Once the pieces got mixed, so too did the color of the structures.  There were cars, rocket ships, drilling machines, dinosaurs, and more.

Outside adventures included games of puppies and kitties, rock stars and robbers.  Houses, slides, and donut shops were created out of big blocks.  A mail truck delivered several boxes of donuts to eager kiddos.

On a rainy day, we took a quick walk around the pond and did a bird scavenger hunt.  We saw several bird houses, one bird nest, birds flying, birds in a tree, and a bird feeder.  We saw three Red-winged black birds down by the pond and heard several beautiful bird songs.

During Morning Meetings and transitions we sang lots of 5 songs—5 Green & Speckled Frogs, 5 Little Muffins, and 5 Little Ducks.  We also enjoyed two stories about rabbits gobbling up the veggies in gardens.  In Miss Penny and Mr. Grubbs, by Lisa Campbell Ernst, Mr. Grubbs tried to sabotage his neighbor’s garden by introducing two rabbits.  By the end, Miss Penny had no vegetables to bring to the County Fair, but she had lots of rabbits to enter into the livestock competition.  In Muncha! Muncha! Muncha!, by Candace Fleming, despite Mr. McGreely’s best efforts at building structures to keep three rabbits out of his garden, they kept finding a way to get in and munch his veggies.  The stories have been much loved by the children this week.

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