Welcome back from break

It was so nice to see everyone after winter vacation. I hope everyone had a great break and is ready to jump headfirst into our art unit.

But before we could begin we spent our first few days getting back into the swing of things. We checked out center’s old and new, played outdoors and checked out the fallen snow. It felt great to be back in school!

 


The ground outside of our playground is filled with different construction equipment and we got to spend quite a bit of time seeing them dig up trenches to place pipes and other things inside of.

 

We’ve added two new letters to our literacy vocab.G&S it was great spending time with you these past two weeks! We also spent a lot of time reviewing letters that we learnt in the fall.

 

We began to talk about our art unit and decided to focus on a particular style of art called cubism. We learnt that cubism is made up of lines and shapes some of those shapes are 2D and others are 3D. A 2D shape is flat meaning it only goes up and down and side to side unlike a 3D shape which also goes back to front.

Cubism was started by an artist named Pablo Picasso. He was a very interesting artist because he never stop learning. He wasn’t even just a painter he actually practiced all different kinds of art including sculpture. Taking him as our inspiration helped us choose what type of cubist art we wanted to create. after which we decided to answer a question “ if we were a Cubist sculpture what would we look like?”

Our process began with first finding 2D shapes in in Cubist paintings afterwards we began making models and drawings with 2D shapes. Once we got the hang of that we learned about 3D shapes and try to identify them in Cubist sculptures. We even began to identify 3D shapes in our classroom, lunch boxes and backpacks.

 

Finally it was time to start our own sculpture. The fist step was to collect we 3D objects from our homes which we then sorted into shape categories ( sphere, cylinder, pyramid, cube, cone, rectangular prism ) .

 

Stay tuned to find out where our art journey takes us next!

Winter, Writing and Chanukah

Winter has finally arrived we were greeted on Monday with a playground full of snow! We spent a lot of the day making snow angels walking, making crunchy snowy footprints, seeing if we could build a snowman and tried to get the snow off of the canvas roof. We discovered that snow when it’s all piled up is very very heavy.

We even had a chance go down to the river and see what it looked like when there was snow on the ground. Much to our surprise the river was not frozen even though some of the plants had ice on them.

 

 

 

 

 

In addition to all of the snow, there were trucks in our yard and Scott the Engineer came by to answer some of our questions; Such as  –  Why haven’t the trucks been digging? Can you dig when it is cold?  and What is happening now?

We learned two more letters, C and O. Much to our surprise the letter C makes a hard sound, like the word ‘C’ in cat. We practiced writing our letters and using their sounds.

Not only did we have a chance to play in the snow and learn new letters we also got to learn all about a new holiday. It’s name is Chanukah and it is 8 days long. Morah told us the story of Chanukah and all special ways we celebrate it. One of those ways is by lighting the menorah. We add one candle to the menorah each night for every night of  chanukah until we are lighting 8 candles!

Morah Caitlyn told us that we were each going to make a menorah to take home! We all sanded wood and got the pieces nice and smooth. Afterwards we used alcohol inks to decorate our wooden menorahs. Once they were dry we added the legs, shamash (lighter candle), and nuts to make our menorah complete.

Another way we celebrate Chanukah is by eating food fried in oil ( to help celebrate and remember that the oil lasted for 8 days, instead of just one). We make special treats, such as latkes with applesauce,  and jelly filled donuts. We got to make latkes and taste them along with delicious applecause!

We spent a lot of time, building menorahs in block center, cooking latkes ( potato pancakes) sufganiot ( jelly donuts), reading and acting out the Chanukah story, and creating art for our classroom and hallway. We had a lot of fun learning and celebrating the holiday of Chanukah.

Not only did we get to create menorahs but we also got to create driedles! Morah Malkie and Morah Janice gave each one of us a driedle to take home and told to decorate and design it anyway we wanted. On our last day of school before winter break, we each brought back our driedles and showed them to our friends! It was so exciting!!

Have a wonderful winter break!

Autumn Math

We have been learning about patterns. A pattern is something that repeats. Children can describe a pattern by naming the pattern unit, the part that repeats. We learn about patterns through exposure and experiences. We can notice patterns through colors, shapes, sounds, movement, and numbers. We practiced creating and continuing patterns using different objects around our classroom. By understanding patterns, children are able to make predictions about what should come next.

With the fall weather in full swing we took a trip down to the river to see if anything was different since we had been there last month. Much to our surprise the whole river underwent a fall metamorphosis. The leaves were on the ground the river was moving slower but we didn’t know if it was really different. So we took a stick and measured how deep the river was. It was pretty cool that even though it was fall the river was still pretty deep, though it wasn’t warm water. It was really cold  – most certainly not swimming water.

We had special visitors come join our class for part of the day. Jordana’s grandparents are music teachers and they  came to school, to show us special instruments and how they work.

We got to meet Scott the engineer, he is in charge of the new addition to building. He came to our class to answer our questions about what will be taking place over the next year or two.

 

Center time is always busy, but here are some highlights.

 

Fall and Fire Safety

Fall has quickly flown in and set us on the hunt 4 leaves. each time we set foot outside we are bombarded what sites and sounds of autumn. We heard animals beginning to get ready for the winter. Birds flying south, squirrels gathering nuts and chipmunks preparing their burrows for sleep.

 

We also had a very special guest join us this week –  we met our local firefighters and learned how to protect ourselves in the event of a fire. We also got to see the fire truck and the fireman took us around and showed us what all the knobs buttons and gauges do.

 

We learned about the letter I this week and practiced letters that we’ve learned before

 

While center time is always busy – here are some highlights

Sukkot is Coming

We started this week with so many birthdays. We are lucky enough to celebrate three children turning 5 and 6. these are the first birthdays in our class and we were so excited to do celebrate with them. we made each one of them a cake and a birthday book they also got to pick a special book they wanted their parent or Morah two read to the class. after the special book each friend wish them a happy birthday and washed up 4 birthday cake. we love celebrating our friends.

This week, we learned all about Sukkot. We saw that a sukkah is a hut with 4 walls, a door, and a roof made of schach (usually branches or stalks). Our school sukkah has corn stalks for the roof. We can see the sky through the sukkah roof.

We learned about the mitzvah of eating in the Sukkah on Sukkot. We also learned about the story that happened a long time ago when Jewish people were traveling through the desert. We discussed the desert and how scary, hot and uncomfortable it must have been to live there. We learned about how Hashem helped the Jewish people by protecting them. Hashem loves all of us and wants us to be safe and happy so we we can do good things in the world. When we are in the Sukkah it feels safe and good and that reminds us about how Hashem protects us and loves us.

Back in class we built a Sukkah in our library out of blocks, fabric, branches, reeds and leaves. A Sukkah needs four walls, a floor and a roof that you can see through.


We learned about the Lulav and Etrog and used our senses to explore each. We touched them, smelled them, noticed the color and shape of each type of leaf…We spoke about each one and noticed their unique properties and learned that although they are all different and unique, they are also all plants and that is something that’s the same about them. We learned that on Sukkot we bring these four different plants together to hold in our hands and wave them to the front, back, and side-to-side. This reminds us that Hashem is all around and loves all the people. We also spoke about how we are all different and we can bring our uniqueness to the world to do good things (Mitzvot).

The holiday of Sukkot is one that always evokes a special excitement in Pre-K. The beauty of sharing meals with friends and family in a Sukkah is a unique experience. Before the big event, Supper in the Sukkah, we worked together to prepare a salad to share with everyone who would be there. We cut peppers, cucumbers and lettuce. Making food is so much fun! We had a great time sharing dinner with all of our friends, both old and new.

 

And while learning about holidays it lots of fun we always make time for literacy. this week we added the letters F and E to our expanding knowledge base. We played games and practiced writing and using those letters sounds.

Dip the Apple in the Honey

As the weather begins to change we went down to the river to see what it looks like at the very beginning of fall. We saw that many of the trees still have their leaves and the river looked very full and was moving quite fast.

We also had a chance you spend some lunch time outdoors because before you know it it will be winter and it will be very very cold.

We continued to learn about the holiday of Rosh Hashanah. Last week we learned that it is a special Yom Tov holiday and it is the Jewish New Year. We eat special sweet foods in honor of this holiday, because we would like to have a sweet new year, just like the food we are eating.

Some of the sweet foods that we eat are apples dipped in honey! Not only are some apples sweet by themselves, but adding honey makes them, extra sweet, just like we hope our year will be!

Did you know that not all apples are sweet apples? Some apples have a very sour taste we took some time to explore different types of apples some that were very sweet, so sweet they almost didn’t need any honey and others that were so sour we wished we did some honey. Our class preferred the sweet red apples over the sour green ones.

We made a special Yom Tov holiday project and baked a delicious apple honey cake to bring home to our families for Rosh Hashanah.

We also made some beautiful Rosh Hashanah drawings to decorate our classroom and hallway.

And while learning about holidays it lots of fun we always make time for literacy. This week we added the letters F and E to our expanding knowledge base. We played games and practiced writing and using those letters sounds.

Rosh Hashanah is coming

It has been a very busy two weeks in Pre-K!  We continued to explore our centers and our classroom all while becoming more engaged in our surrounding environment.

We also began doing ‘Letter of the Week.’ Each we week we will learn a new letter, with extra focus on the letter’s sound and how to write the letter. Letter sounds and writing are a major hallmark of Pre-K.

Over the last two weeks we learned the letter ‘L’ and ‘F’. Stayed tuned for next weeks letter!

 

We met a new friend this week as well – Simon the Sorting Sloth – he helped us to sort all different types of items. Some we sorted by shape, others by color and even a few by texture. It was a lot of fun learning how to group and sort!

 

We also began our exploration into Rosh Hashanah. We learned that it is a special Yom Tov  holiday and it is the Jewish New Year. We eat special sweet foods in honor of this holiday, because we would like to have a sweet new year, just like the food we are eating.

We also blow a special horn called a shofar. It is made from the horn of a ram and it is blown in shul by the rabbi on Rosh Hashanah. We spent time exploring different shofars in their various states of completion.

It was also picture day this week! It was so much fun getting dressed in our very best!

 

Welcome to and welcome back to school

We’ve been busy in Pre-K and it has been a great beginning to an exciting year.  We’ve been exploring our new classroom, practicing new routines and skills, getting to know new friends and reconnecting with old ones.  Here are some highlights from our week.

The Writing center is always bustling with students creating, art, writing, and other masterpieces.

Our Classroom is full of interesting things.  We’re having a great time exploring everything, figuring out what things are for and how to use them.

 

Circle Time is fun and interactive. We met a few class mascots who help us to gain new skills, practice old ones and teach us life and social skills.

We are learning how to write our names! with lowercase letters!  We started to practice this skill by tracing our names with dry-erase markers every morning.

We ended the week by celebrating Shabbat and baking Challah. School is so much fun!

M is for….

We continued to work on out rhyming book, but we also introduced a new letter. We learned that M is the first letter in four of our friends names and it begins some of our favorite words.

We also go to spend part of our week outside, exploring the snow, river and surrounding area. It was great to see how our environment changed when experiencing various types of weather.

 

Overall we spent the our week rhyming, practicing our reading, writing and math skills. We have also been building, tall and dynamic structures in block center , all while our imaginative play is becoming more and more intentional and exploratory.

Rhymes with….

What a wacky week! We had no school on Monday and shortened day on Wednesday, but even with our short week we learned a lot!

This week we began our authors unit in earnest. We are creating a rhyming book, each student is creating their own rhyming story (poem). We are  also focusing on our growing fine motor skills, by coloring very detailed pictures and writing the rhyming words of our story.

We began by looking at which words rhyme and we learned that rhyming words are about which words sound the same – it is not about spelling! Once we got the hang of matching rhyming words together, Morah and our kindergarten friends started to read rhyming books to us. We then got to pick out the words that rhymed in the story.

53211109_262590021325632_2428267491458285568_n.jpg53176713_428035617999574_8182003185250992128_n.jpg53846731_2208272825862454_3308546202986872832_n.jpg53684102_302770483743287_2888344276536655872_n.jpg53165010_2217869478280887_4298870287400697856_n.jpg

 

The dentist also came this week and showed us all the proper way to take care of our teeth. It is hard work, but it well worth it to see our bright smiles.

53441993_2422540914640640_4421593059418963968_n.jpg

54256088_2016343308479230_8311573908960575488_n.jpg54517936_566551273844754_8225851511398203392_n.jpg54278129_398356097408408_5163638673727553536_n.jpg

Morah added material to our block center and soon we were creating structures that weren’t able to build before!

53260602_352725985585584_62718423875977216_n.jpg53365814_271956153743394_3673568318058397696_n.jpg53909794_685113581905942_8626618654999445504_n.jpg53716792_1057784251097246_3755578845969776640_n.jpg

53348915_291819514822344_6206063674969292800_n.jpg53318694_546255172531235_1296428937630449664_n.jpg53500035_388834561678228_4698537743280504832_n.jpg53249235_2552517681488538_3403469485649166336_n.jpgWe had a smattering of snow on Friday, so we took the opportunity to explore how the playground was effected by the cold weather.

 

Can’t wait to see everyone next week!