Summer Recap: In July, we had lots of fun exploring the oceans and outer space. We made jellyfish using paper plates and yarn. We used tissue paper squares to make seahorses. We listened to stories about sparkling fish. After exploring the oceans we moved on to exploring space. We learned about the planets and what order they are from the sun. We pretended to be the planets orbiting our sun. We made rocket ships and moons. We listened to stories about the planets and how important the sun is to life on earth. In August, we learned about the animals found on farms. We talked about what is our favorite farm animal. We made sheep using cotton balls. We created chickens and pigs with paper plates. We played farm animal dominoes. We read the book Little Red Hen. During the months of July and August we also had so much fun playing in the water and using our new water slide. We enjoyed splashing around and sliding into the water pool at the bottom of the slide. We learned about waiting in line and taking turns. We also had fun watching Magic Joe and his amazing magic tricks. He had us laughing and wondering how he does all of his magic tricks. We also got to meet Ranger Jack and his animal puppets. One of the best days was the day of our School Carnival. We got to pet animals, ride ponies, play fun games, get tattoos and face paintings. There were yummy treats like cotton candy and snow cones!
September Recap: In September we learned about the seven continents. We learned what colors the continents are through the Montessori way. We made continent booklets and looked at the continent puzzle. We completed an activity that teaches us what plants grow in the seven continents. We also studied apples. We looked at the different types of apples. We completed a Math activity graphing our favorite types of apples. Taste testing is a fun activity for the students. Mostly our first month was about getting to know each other. We learned what the rules are in our classroom and what our teacher’s expectations are. In September our Montessori lesson concentrated on greetings. Every morning the student is greeted and expected to respond in a friendly manner. We practice shaking hands and wishing everybody a good day. In September our special project was making All About Me posters. We told about our likes and drew pictures of our family. We discussed likes and dislikes. Our book of the month was The Kissing Hand. A heartwarming story about a mother’s love for her child and her child’s move into school. Enrichment classes started with students learning about ABC Mouse on the computers and Spanish lessons with Miss Lucy. The students learned how to say hello and goodbye in Spanish. Also, how to respond and greet people in Spanish. September was a month full of new relationships and new classmates. We began the new year saying the Pledge of Allegiance and singing a patriotic song every morning.
October Recap: In October, we learned about the life cycle of a pumpkin. We designed our own Jack-o-Lantern faces. We cut open our own pumpkin and felt and looked at the seeds. We germinated the pumpkin seeds using a baggy, cotton, and water. Another topic that we learned about was the skeletal system. We made skeletons using Q-tips, paper, and glue. We talked about the longest bone in the body being the femur. We talked about how the skull protects our brain and our rib bones protect our heart and lungs. Our continent of the month was North America. We colored flags from Mexico, Canada, and the USA. We made our own maps using the wooden puzzle maps. Our Montessori lessons entailed how to greet somebody with a handshake and a greeting. We worked on making our handshakes firm and meaningful. We talked about using only kind words and thinking about what we say before we say it. Our special project was making our own dreamcatcher. We used paper plates, yarn, and feathers. Dreamcatchers are talesman made to protect sleeping children from bad dreams and nightmares. Enrichment for the month of October included learning the months in Spanish. The students also learned the Spanish words associated with their five senses. In cooking they made their own spice scented playdough. October was a month filled with fun art projects and ongoing learning. Each student moves at their own pace and many made great strides in reading and math. The Halloween walk was a success and it is always fun to dress up in your favorite costume.
November Recap: In November, we started learning about the United States of America. Our class began with discussions about our 50 states and about how large Alaska as a state is compared to the other 49 states. We used our large United States puzzle to trace the states and made our own states map. We learned the names of the states and wrote them on our classrooms map. In Zoology, we looked at birds and what makes a bird, a bird. We read a book about the bald eagle and how it is a symbol of the United States. We also learned about turkeys and we made our very own turkey out of a brown paper bag. Our Botany lesson looked at trees and the parts of a tree. We learned how there are different types of trees, including how deciduous trees lose their leaves but coniferous, evergreen trees, stay green all year long. The book of the month was “Fill A Bucket“. All month we tried our best to fill our friends’ and families’ buckets with good thoughts and good deeds. To celebrate Thanksgiving, we had our own Thanksgiving Feast. Our November enrichment classes included cooking lessons involving cinnamon. For cooking, we made cinnamon apple chips and cinnamon smelling playdough. Art lessons revolved around fall leaves. We made leaf people using leaves for painting. In computers, we are learning how to use the mouse to choose activities and different programs within ABCMOUSE. The website leads us through many fun activities as well as help fine tune our motor skills. Music lessons were about the great composer Ludwig Von Beethoven. We listened to his music and visualized what he meant to portray during his infamous symphonies.
December Recap: In December we studied the continent of Europe. We utilized our wooden continent puzzle of Europe to make our own maps and looked at photos of different animals we might find in Europe. We matched up European landmarks and read about them in books. While reading, we discovered exactly why the ‘Leaning Tower of Pisa’ leans. We now know who built the Eiffel Tower. Much of the month involved preparing for the holidays by making holiday art and presents for our family while learning about holidays and seasons. We read books about Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa. We talked about some of the traditions that our families have during the holidays and created holiday booklets for Hanukkah and Christmas. In preparing for our Holiday performance, we have been practicing our holiday songs. A song that we have been practicing during our Spanish enrichment Feliz Navidad, will be a favorite during our classroom’s performance. In Zoology we studied the parts of a horse and reindeer. We made reindeer booklets labeling the reindeers’ body parts. Our book of the month was The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein. The children love reading this book and being able to discuss how and what giving looks like and feels like. We learned that giving can feel as good as getting a gift, which is an important lesson. Especially during the Holidays. During our art enrichment, we introduced the famous painter Vincent Van Gogh. We painted pictures that resemble Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’. Spanish enrichment has been fun learning the months of the year, holiday terms and singing holiday songs in Spanish. We continue to learn holiday words in Spanish. Each child has enjoyed preparing healthy treats during our cooking enrichment class. We have made delicious zucchini chips, blueberry bites, and reindeer celery. Music enrichment was all about our favorite holiday songs.
January Recap: In January we studied the continent of Antarctica. We looked at the globe and was able to see that it covers the south pole. We learned there are many different species of penguins. We learned that penguins don’t fly; however, they are amazing swimmers and slide on the ice to get around. We looked at other birds that don’t fly, for example the ostrich. We studied hibernation and learned the way bears hibernate throughout the winter. We learned that many animals migrate to the South to avoid the cold winters in the North. Most birds will migrate South for the winter. We looked at how animals will hoard nuts during the Fall months to prepare for the lack of food in the winter. Our book of the month was The Mitten by Jan Brett. We read the book and made our own mittens which we filled with animals. For art we painted killer whales and made mosaic dolphins. We made handprint penguins. Our enrichment lessons included learning about the Spanish names for large animals. We practiced the names of the months in Spanish. Our computer enrichment focuses on the u se of a mouse and how to navigate the computer to find activities which interest the student.
February Recap: February was all about the continent of Asia. We learned about the animals of Asia. For Zoology we studied the giant panda and learned that they only eat bamboo. We looked at maps of Asia and identified several of the countries. We looked at photos of famous monuments in Asia, such as the Taj Mahal, the Great Wall of China, and Angkor Wat. We made Chinese palm fans and paper pandas. For Botany we looked at the parts of a root. We learned that roots have several jobs including holding the plant in the ground and the taking in of water and minerals. We looked at the Chinese zodiac calendar and discussed how it is different from our American calendar. We used our birth years to find out which animal is our zodiac animal. Most of the class were born in the year of the horse or the year of the sheep. Our book of the month was Little Blue and Little Yellow. We used watercolors to create the color green using blue and yellow. We practiced lining up nicely and being courteous to our friends and others. February’s enrichments were used to explore the music of Asia. We listened to music from Japan, China, and Russia. The artist of the month was Yayoi Kusama. Yayoi Kusama is called the “Queen of the Polka Dots” for her use of dots in her artwork. We used our fingers to make polka dot pictures using hearts. Computer enrichment continued to teach the student how to navigate on the computer and to find our own lessons. In Spanish enrichment we practiced counting and greeting in Spanish.
March News: March themes include learning about the continent of South America. In Zoology we will learn about the animals of South America including the llama, the Andean condor, and the jaguar. We will look at the biosystem of a rainforest and how the plants and animals live there. We will use our puzzle map to make maps of South America. We will label the countries and the capitals. We will celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday (March 2nd) and read many of his books including Green Eggs and Ham and the Cat in the Hat. Our special project will be making our own rain sticks. We will use paper towel tubes, nails, rice and paint. We will imitate the sound of rain hitting the rainforest canopies. St. Patrick’s Day will be celebrated with many fun art projects and green snacks.