Happy Holidays

I can’t believe that it’s already winter break!  Starting our new school four months ago was a whirlwind, but here we are.  I consider being able to spend my days with your children a complete privilege.  Watching them discover that they are artists, authors, scientists, and writers is a great way to spend my day.  I want to wish all of my Super Kid’s families a wonderful holiday season and I look forward to seeing my kids in the new year.  Check out some pictures below of our busy week together.

Gingerbread Houses

   

Gingerbread Man Unplugged Coding

 

Holiday Art Projects

   

Five Senses Activities (The one picture is of the class trying dark bitter chocolate!)

 

Stem Cup Challenge (How tall of a tower can you make with 100 cups?)

Curling In The Learning Commons

 

So Much Learning

 

This past week, our school had it’s first winter concert!  Being a brand new school this year has been all about firsts, but our first winter concerts was extra special.  The Super Kids were so excited and proud to perform for their families!  As you can tell from the pictures, we were polar bears.

Our classroom has some new bulletin board displays for the winter season.  Our snowman and our winter family tree complete with family pictures.

This week we learned about holidays celebrated by people in our community and around the world with the help of the Pebble Go website.  We explored Diwali, Hanukkah, Ramadan, Chinese New Year, Christmas and many more.  The Super Kids discovered, through their research, that holidays celebrated by different communities seem to all relate to family, food, lights, celebrations, and gifts.

We have been exploring letter writing for most of the month of December and have learned about the different parts that make up a friendly letter.  We have read many books with a letter theme to them to explore the parts of a letter.  The Day The Crayons Quit and The Day the Crayons Came Home are two excellent examples of letter writing and postcards.

 

We also read the book I Want An Iguana by Karen Orloff and David Catrow.  This is a sweet book written using letters from a boy to his mom about why he wants an iguana and she writes him back each time.

This time of the year lends nicely to this letter format.  Many of the Super Kid’s families are receiving letters and cards from family and friends.  Many have brought examples from home.

Together we talked about what the purpose of a letter is and who we could write our letters to.  It was important to give the class the choice of their own audience.  First I wrote a letter to my family to show my thinking and to use the “What Good Writer’s Do” checklist in our classroom.  Re-reading, editing, using cross-outs, adding details is all part of the writing process.  Then we created a letter to our Education Assistant, Mme. Coutts.  After all this writing, the kids were eager to start their own.  Letters were written to family members far way, parents, elf on the shelf, Santa, and even a few to the Tooth Fairy!  Some of the students are still working on their letters but I had to share the one below. This Super Kid added a picture during choice time on Friday and asked to take it home so he could leave it for his family’s elf on the shelf.  Of course he could!  I just had to take a picture of it first.  I just loved that he choose to work on it during his choice time.  It showed power of an authentic audience. 🙂

Small group centres is an important part of our learning in our classroom.  During both math and reader’s workshops the students cycle through a variety of activities that allow them to practice developing skills.  This week I had to snap a few pics of a few of these centres.  The last two were taken during choice time.  I just love when students independently pick these type of activities during this time. 🙂

   

One week to go before our winter break!  Gingerbread houses, art activities, and STEM challenges are going to keep us busy throughout the week.  Stay tuned….

 

Snowman, Winter Concert, and Coding

My drive to work every morning only takes me a few minutes.  I’m lucky to have a 7 minute commute.  I know… it’s awesome especially since I pass a Tim Horton’s coffee shop too.  The other day I had my daughter take this picture over my shoulder as we came up to her school bus stop right by my school. I know…another very lucky part of my morning.  The sun was coming up over the houses in our school community and it was so pretty!  You can see the school on the left side of the picture.

 

The past two weeks we have spent time exploring the coding program Kodable.  The class enjoys the opportunity to program their character to maneuver through a maze that they have created!  The class enjoys it while working on both problem solving and deductive reasoning.

The class also unplugged and used their new found coding tools to direct our new robot friends “Bee-Bot” to move to where we as a class wanted them to go.  Students created their codes on whiteboards entered the directions on the robot and watched to see if they were correct.  If not, they had to start over.  We used Mrs. G’s picture grid to connect it to our knowledge of vowels.  For example…code Bee-Bot to use all four arrows and land on a picture with a short i sound.

 

  

Our guided math centers focused on number sense development with some groups working on rolling and adding dice, others rolling and subtracting dice, and others working on adding two digit numbers with regrouping.

 

We modified our large snakes and ladders games by adding two dice together before moving.

Next week is the start of Hanukkah.  Through our study of family traditions and winter celebrations, we learned that some families celebrate Hanukkah.  We used wooden dreidels to learn a Hanukkah math game that will be a math center this week.

On Friday we visited Ms. L’s multiage 2/3 classroom across the hall.  We played a French game with them acted out emotion words.

Snowman books are a must at this time of the year!  I can’t think of a better inspiration for an art activity! While practicing our winter concert songs we created our own snowman at night inspired by the books “Snowman At Night” and  “Snow Scene”.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QmDlSzoE2-M

This coming week is our much anticipated winter concert!  The kids have been practicing their songs in music class and in our classroom.  We are so excited to share their hard work with you! The stage is set…we’ll see you soon!