Congratulations on a productive first trimester! We have all earned a well-deserved break. I hope you enjoy many relaxed days with family and friends. Many scientific studies clearly show how important play time is for children and adults, too! We learn best and grow most during the time we have for joyful explorations. I encourage you to check out our Twitter feed for more information.
The October Activity Calendar was sent home on Thursday. It is also linked under the TK Homework tab. As always, the most important ways to become a great student is to read and be read to daily and DO SOME CHORES!
This vacation time would also be a great opportunity to workout those small finger muscles. Most of the students are finding it very tiring to write and draw and cut. That’s because their finger muscles are still developing and need some time in the “Finger Gym”. Click HERE to find a list of fun ways to exercise those muscles.
If your child spends some time online, check out the tabs above for links to some good sites. You can also try these free, high quality websites:
Several of you have asked for a list of exceptional apps. I will work on that and post it soon. So check back here.
I’ll be starting my vacation with a technology conference and then jury duty. Later, I’ll fly to Atlanta to spoil my grandchildren and both of my sons. At the end of the month, I get to enjoy time with my daughter. It looks to be a very lucky month for me. What will you be doing?
See you back at school on Wednesday, October 26th at 11:04 AM – 2:35 PM.
Dear TK Families,
You can now add items from home to your child’s Seesaw journal. Like everything with Seesaw, it’s easy! Download the Seesaw class app, scan the QR code I sent home on Friday, and with a couple of taps, your item is added. It’s a great way to connect home and school learning and you’ll end up with a wonderful digital scrapbook for your child’s TK year.
I will be available after school on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday this week to walk you through the steps. Plan to stay for a few minutes and try it out.
It’s time to save your child’s digital portfolio of work that is on Seesaw. Here is the link with the “how it works” info.
Don’t put it off! I know you want to preserve this precious time of their lives. If you are not sure what to do, I will be available after school so we can figure it out together.
Thank you so much for spending last Thursday evening in our classroom. It is my favorite day of the year because families come together to encourage all our young learners. I focused on connecting you to our online work because it is so precious to capture the essence of childhood through their voices and thoughts about their experiences. Childhood goes by in a flash, but with forever access online you can always return to these moments and hear the joy and wonder in their voices. Don’t forget to leave your own comments so your child can reminisce with fondness as they listen to your voice many years from now.
I will be sending an email with the links to our VoiceThreads so those who did not attend can have access as well.
Code.org put together this five minute video to help explain what computer programmers do and what coding is. The more I learn about coding, the more I appreciate how it teaches perseverance and problem solving. If my students never become a programmer, they can all use those skills!
Today, our president spoke about the importance of learning computer science at a young age. I also recognize the benefits which is why my students use kid-friendly programming apps like Bee-bot and Daisy the Dinosaur. This week my robot will make an appearance and the students will learn to be navigators and drivers. Soon our 3rd grade buddies will be working with us on the code.org website. I’ll be sending out more info so your child can log in at home and use code.org. If you would like to gain some computer science skills, come join us in the classroom. It’s always an adventure in TK!
Do you expect a classroom to be noisy or quiet? Do you expect students to be sitting politely and waiting for the teacher to direct the instruction? If you visit my classroom, and I hope you do, you will find out very quickly that my classroom is a noisy and active place most of the time. It may look messy and be louder than you are accustomed to, but that is learning in action!
In my roles as teacher, employee, boss, daughter, wife, mom, gramma, or friend, I realized that I don’t have all the answers and needed to ask questions, lots of questions. Shouldn’t we expect students to have the same need? Of, course! So I structure every lesson to include many opportunities for students to talk. By encouraging my students to practice putting words together to communicate their ideas, they are building strong relationships with me and their classmates. When my students feel safe and connected and valued, they are then free to explore deeper and make better learning connections. They practice collaborative strategies and learn to negotiate with and listen to others just like they will have to do in their future careers.
So now you know a bit about why my classroom is a noisy place. Learning thrives when relationships develop. I hope you’ll stop by soon and practice learning with us.
Here is a link to the best playdough recipe I have ever used. Much better than store-bought! We use playdough in class almost daily. It’s the perfect mixture of small muscle exercise and creative fun. It would be wonderful to have a fresh batch of colorful playdough each month. When you make a batch for home, why not double it and send some to school? We would be most appreciative.
Our little nutrition video is pretty cute, don’t you think? Well, you can participate in determining the contest winners while you help your family or class practice digital learning. Watch the video finalists and tally your votes and send one collective opinion via our online ballot. The videos are very short (about 90 seconds), so this task won’t take long at all.
As an exercise, this helps NextVista.org choose winners, of course, but even better, it gives students a sense of the various ways people approach sharing what they’ve learned. If you’d like to have your child enter the next contest (see below), this is a great way to get their gears turning.