Weekly Update 2/11-2/15

This week we continued our discussion of simple machines by talking about who works with simple machines and how you can use them in your life. The students had the chance to walk around Kloefkorn to go on a simple machine scavenger hunt and discovered that there were simple machines around every corner! We also had a great time during our Spring Party! A big thank you to Jenn, Angie, and Mary for volunteering to facilitate an activity during this time, you rock!

During our small groups this week the students made oobleck (cornstarch and water), practiced their recall skills, and learned about rhyming words. You can practice rhyming words at home throughout routines! You can call attention to how the words sound similar and see if your child can think of a word that rhymes too. Encourage any type of word, even if it’s a silly made up word, to support their ability to recognize when a word rhymes.

 

Our social emotional curriculum reviewed fair ways to play in the classroom. We talked about how students can play together, trade, or share their toys! We utilize a problem solution kit in our classroom that provides children with multiple ways in which to solve their social problems such as: get a timer, trade, ask nicely etc. If this is something you would like to use at your house, let me know! I’m happy to get one to you.

Parent Teacher Conferences

You should have all received an e-mail from me last week about parent teacher conferences. Please let me know if you will be attending conferences so that I can best plan for our meeting.

Reminders

February 18 — No School (Plan Day)

February 26 — No School (PLC)

March 5 & 7 — Parent Teacher Conferences

Weekly Update 2/4-2/8

This week we began discussing a variety of simple machines: screw, pulley, wedge, and wheel and axle. The students had the opportunity to explore various types of screws and try to match screw drivers to the screws, use a pulley to lift a small weight, use knives (wedge) to cut play-dough, and explore a skate. Mrs Bassett (morning teacher) came in and demonstrated how to use a complex machine (blender) to make banana smoothies. They were a hit!

In small groups this week we made play-dough, practiced our throwing and catching skills with balls and beanbags, and matched lids to different types of containers. Cooking with your child is a great opportunity to practice math and reading skills and practice following directions. Start with something simple, such as a trail mix, and then slowly make the recipes more complex with more steps!

Our social emotional curriculum talked about how to manage waiting. Sometimes it is hard for children to wait for their turn or for someones attention. One strategy we talked about was counting silently while you’re waiting.

Spring Party

We have enough volunteers for our Spring Party on the 14th, thank you!! Just a reminder that we will be passing out Valentine’s Day cards during this time and your child is welcome to bring one for each child (18 students), keeping in mind that we DO NOT allow candy/food items and prefer that no names are written on them. Your child is welcome to write their name so we know who they are from.

Reminders

February 14 — Spring Party

February 18 — No School (Plan Day)

February 26 — No School (PLC)

Weekly Update 1/23-1/25

This week we continued our discussion about simple machines and specifically talked about levers. We also added the word fulcrum to our vocabulary! We talked about how the fulcrum can be in different locations on a lever in order to support it’s function. The students were even able to use levers to make lemonade! It was a big hit 🙂

In small groups this week we practiced our cutting skills using levers (scissors), mixed paint to determine what colors it would make, and used levers (tongs) to pick up ping pong balls. During our Second Step lesson we learned what it meant to feel disappointed. We talked about how students might not always get a turn or get what they want and that might make them feel disappointed. Then we talked about how we could make our bodies feel better by taking a deep breath.

Spring Party 

Our Spring Party will be on February 14 at 1:30-2:00pm. We are looking for 2 volunteers to bring in a game or craft for our students to complete during this time. It could be Bingo, decorating felt shapes, a matching game, pin the bird on the tree (or other variations), etc. these games/crafts do not need to be elaborate, the kiddos will love whatever you bring. If you would be willing to volunteer for this event, please let me know! It would be greatly appreciated!

This will also be a time for students to pass out Valentine’s Day cards.

We have 17 students in the classroom. Just a reminder that we do not allow children to bring in any candy/food items and please do not write names on the cards. Your child is welcome to write his/her name so we know who they’re from.

Reminders

January 29 — No School (PLC Day)

February 14 — Spring Party

Weekly Update 1/14-1/18

From The Office…

If you are not in need of transportation to or from school, it is the parent’s responsibility to contact transportation and let them know directly at 402-436-1148. The office staff will no longer be making these phone calls. Thank you.

 

We have continued our discussion of simple machines this week and have focused specifically on inclined planes. We have talked about how inclined planes help us move things. We did an experiment on the playground with a basket of blocks, a rope, and an inclined plane (slide) to see how we could get the basket to the top of the playground. Ask your child if they remember how we did it!

In small groups this week the preschoolers have had the opportunity to explore different types of simple machines and manipulate them, practice sorting by color, shape, and size, and they played a hide a seek game with simple machines. During this game, the teacher hid a simple machine and gave clues such as, “The simple machine is near the easel” or “The simple machine is under the table” so that the students could find it. This was a great way to practice spatial relationships and the vocabulary that went along with it.

Our Second Step curriculum focused on identifying and managing strong emotions. We talked about being frustrated at school or home and how we can make our bodies feel better. We practiced putting our hands on our tummies and taking a deep breath and we practiced how we could ask a teacher or friend for help.

Reminders

January 21 — No School (MLK Jr. Day)

January 29 — No School (PLC)

Weekly Update 1/7-1/11

Welcome back! We’ve had a great first week of 2019 in preschool 🙂

We started our Simple Machines study and have begun to discuss the different types of simple machines and how they help us. This week we discussed what we already know about simple machines and what we would like to find out. If you’re unfamiliar with simple machines, I encourage you to do some research, you might be surprised about what kinds of simple machines you have in your home!

In small groups this week the students had an opportunity to make predictions about whether they thought items would sink or float, they got to “go fishing” for numbers, and practice their fine motor skills with pom-poms and tweezers. Making predictions is an easy way to practice math, literacy, and reasoning skills! Your child could predict the ending of a story, what a TV show will be about, how tall they are, how many peas are on their plate, etc.

Our social emotional curriculum focused on reviewing friendship skills and we began our discussion about emotions. The students were able to practice identifying emotions and showing different emotions.

Reminders

Jan 14-25 — Round 3 Home Visits

Jan 21 — No School (MLK Jr. Day)

Jan 29 — No School (PLC)

 

Weekly Update 12/17-12/20

This week we finished up our discussion of buildings. We recalled the visitors we had last week and talked about what the students would like to share with their families about buildings! Ask your child what they want to share with you. When we return from break, we will be starting our simple machines study.

During our small groups this week, the students practiced how to draw Mat Man’s head. Mat Man is a curriculum that focuses on the correct way to draw a body (eyes, ears, mouth, body, arms, hands, etc.). The students were given a model of how to draw all the parts of his head and then had an opportunity to do so themselves.

During our Second Step lessons, we reviewed the Touching Rule and the safety steps that we have to follow if someone ever breaks the touching rule.

Books

Each year the psychology department collects donated books for the Early Childhood department in order for each child to receive a book. There will be one book in your child’s backpack that you can add to your book collection at home! If there is a library book in your child’s backpack, please double check to ensure that you are not keeping a Kloefkorn library book. Let me know if you have any questions.

Reminders

Dec 20 – Jan 4 — No School (Winter Break) – Students return to school on January 7

 

Weekly Update 12/10-12/14

This week we focused on what happens inside buildings. The students got to predict what they thought happened inside buildings based on pictures and practiced using buildings signs as clues. We had two special visitors come to our classroom this week! Our new custodian, Mr Craig, visited and told us all about his house, what it was made of, and who lived inside. The preschoolers had lots of questions about his dog and the pond in his backyard. The other visitor was a retired construction worker who brought tools, wood, and special materials that he used on the job. The students were able to practice using a screw driver, a wrench, a chalk box, and tape measures.

During small groups this week the students got to walk a letter in different ways (walking, hopping, shuffling, etc.), play a memory game using their pictures and name cards, and make a crunchy snack by following a recipe. Letting kids cook with you is a great learning experience! They get exposure to math, reading, and reasoning skills all while making a delicious treat or meal.

Our social emotional curriculum continued to focus on our touching rule. We also practiced how to use our safety steps which are: 1. Say words that mean “no” 2. Get away and 3. Tell a grown-up

Reminders

December 18 — No School (PLC)

December 21-Jan 4 — No School (Winter Break) – Students return to school on January 7th

 

Weekly Update 12/3-12/7

This week we continued to talk about what buildings are made of and what makes them strong. We also started our discussion of what is special about our building. We went on a walk to tally how many classrooms, restrooms, and offices were at Kloefkorn and we got to take a closer look at the heart in the library. After we examined the heart, the preschoolers were able to create their own to hang up in the classroom!

Our small groups this week included introducing water beads in the sensory table, making shapes with popsicle sticks, and working together to build a structure with blocks. This small group proved to be the most challenging for our students as it involved turn taking, waiting, and sharing. These are skills that can be practiced at home through games, talking, and play. For example, if you’re talking and your child has something they want to say you can remind them that it’s your turn to talk first then, then their turn. You can also reiterate that you know waiting is hard but it makes you feel happy (or any other positive emotion) when your child is able to wait for their turn.

Our social emotional curriculum focused on The Touching Rule (A bigger person should not touch your private body parts except to keep you clean and healthy). We said that private body parts were anything that was covered by a swimming suit and discussed why it would be ok for a doctor to touch private body parts but not a babysitter. We also talked about what to do if someone breaks The Touching Rule and referred to those as the Safety Steps which are: 1. Say words that mean “no” 2. Get away 3. Tell a grown-up.

Reminders

December 18 — No School (PLC)

December 21-January 6 — No School (Winter Break)

Weekly Update 11/28-11/30

Welcome back! I hope you all had a wonderful, relaxing break and holiday. This week we started talking about what buildings are made of. The students had an opportunity to see shingles, dry wall, bricks, straw, and sticks and determine which building materials were sturdy and which would collapse. We were also able to go for a short walk to identify what types of materials the houses around our school are made of.

Our small groups this week focused on letter identification and matching, making trains with cubes, and using your body to make patterns. The students were able to decide what type of pattern they wanted to make, demonstrate it to their friends, and then do it with them. For example, one student might want to clap, stomp, clap, stomp. This would be a fun (and quick) activity to try at home with siblings or parents!

Our social emotional curriculum talked about accidents and caring and helping. We talked about what it means if there is an accident (spilling milk, bumping into a friend, knocking over a friends tower) and what an appropriate response would be (clean it up, make sure friend is okay, apologize and offer to help rebuild). We also discussed what it looks like to be a caring and helpful friend in the classroom and at home.

Attendance

The office staff have asked that you contact them directly if your child will be absent for any reason. You are more than welcome to shoot me an e-mail as well, but I will no longer be forwarding those e-mails to the office.

 

Reminders

Dec 18 — No School (PLC)

Dec 21 – Jan 6 — No School (Winter Break)

 

Weekly Update 11/12-11/16

This week we talked about what the buildings in our neighborhoods look like and began our discussion about who builds buildings. We were able to take a walk to a near by house that in currently under construction. We talked about the different people that worked on the house (contractor, plumber, electrician, realtor, etc.) and what types of tools they used to build it. We will be continuing to talk about who builds buildings next week. If you have any building materials that you would be willing to donate or let us borrow, let me know!

In small groups this week we worked on spelling our names using magnet letters, solving story problems using math concepts, and creating patterns. Our social emotional curriculum focused on safe and unsafe touches. We talked about what each type of touch looked like and how they make people feel.

Screen Time for Preschoolers

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, “for children ages 2 to 5 years, limit screen use to 1 hour per day of high-quality programs. Parents should co-view media with children to help them understand what they are seeing and apply it to the world around them.”

The overuse of screens can lead to a decreased attention span, behavior concerns, sleep disturbances, and childhood obesity. Take a minute to think about how much screen time your child gets every day. Is it supervised? Is it educational? Is it less than an hour? If you were able to answer yes to all of those questions, keep it up! If you answered no to these questions, visit the website below to develop a plan to support your family in decreasing your screen time.

https://www.healthychildren.org/English/media/Pages/default.aspx#home

 

Fall Party

We have gone ahead and planned the activities for our kiddos for our fall party. If you would like to come and participate with your child, you are more than welcome to do so. Our party begins at 1:30 on November 20 and concludes around 2:00 at which time you can choose to take your child home early, you can leave until pick-up, or stay to hang out with us 🙂 I just ask that you let me know what your plans are ahead of time. Thanks!

Reminders

November 20 — Fall Party @ 1:30

November 21-27 — No School

November 39 — Book Orders Due