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Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Fish Tales 11/14 ~ 11/18

We began the week by traveling to Publix to have a behind the scenes tour and buy the food for our feast.
Santa was our guide for this field trip.
We visited the dairy department and went into the refrigerator where they store the milk, yogurt, cheese, and so much more. Brrrrrr chill! It was cold! Then we headed to the deli for some popcorn and don our hair nets to enter the meat department.

The meat wrapping machine is completely automated.
Then it was time to see and touch a live Maine lobster.
We stopped in the produce department for a snack of purple grapes and talked about some of the fruits and vegetables.
Our last stop was the bakery department where we watched one of the bakers decorate a cake. They make roses on a nail and slip it onto the cake using scissors. Then it was off to shop with the help of two dads and the teachers!

We created I am Thankful for... turkeys by snipping paper feathers with scissors, and gluing on sticker eyes, a beak, a wattle, and legs. Then we told the teachers who we are thankful for!

We mixed 1 can of pumpkin, 2/3 c. milk, 1 box of instant vanilla pudding, 1/2 tsp. of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice, and folded in 1 c. of cool whip. Then spooned this into a graham cracker crust and added cool whip to the top!! MmMm good!! Into the freezer went this no bake creation!! The best part was tasting the pumpkin filling!! Mrs. Samuel gave us a taste on a popsicle stick.
We mixed chopped chuck, milk, bread crumbs and eggs with our hands to create meatballs.
At the listening center this week we heard the story, The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry and the Big Hungry Bear by Don and Audrey Wood.

Some of the other books that we read this week are:
The First Thanksgiving Day ~ A Counting Book by Laura Melmed
Hit the Ball Duck by Jez Alborough
Squirrel's Thanksgiving Surprise by Valerie Tripp
City Dog, Country Frog by Mo Williams
1, 2, 3 Thanksgiving by W. Nikola-Lisa

We picked the peas and squash from the garden and ate them later at the feast.
During Exploring on Friday, we cut hot dogs, squash, grapes, and apples. We mashed the potatoes and created bead necklaces. Painting with feathers and using the drums that we made in exploring several weeks ago completed the activities. Many thanks to the parents and grandparents that were able to attend and assist with the feast. As I said at exploring, we could not do this without your help. It was such a joy to watch the children enjoy eating the food that they had helped to prepare!

 We are thankful for your children and for you!! Have a delightful Thanksgiving!!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Fish Tales 11/7 ~ 11/11

We painted dorsal fins using glitter paint, which were props for 
Poetry in the Park.

Fine motor coordination is developed through a wide variety of activities.  
This boy is using wiki sticks to create "roads."
In the teepee, the children are using the loom and stretch loops over the ends. This not only gives the children a chance to practice their fine motor coordination, but also gives them an opportunity to strengthen their fingers.

 Using peg boards reinforces numeral identification and eye-hand coordination.
 Transferring objects is still another way that the children practice their fine motor coordination.
 The children below are building with Dr. Drew blocks and forest animals. As you recall, I met with the inventor at our National Early Childhood conference in Orlando!

Using musical instruments in the Native American Teepee is a favorite activity at center time.

We brain stormed a list of foods for the Thanksgiving Feast during this week. The teachers took the list and narrowed down the choices. The children then chose what they would like to eat on their own personal menu. Each class will buy the food for the feast when they visit the grocery store. This coming week we will prepare the food and we will all gather on Friday for the children to eat.

We created place mats for the feast using their handprints and worked on the  turkey hats.

 On the playground, the children develop their gross motor coordination and strength by using the trikes. It is another outlet for their imaginative play as one boy says to the other, "Fill 'er up!!"

 Mrs. Stypinsky read to us on Thursday because Mrs. Smay was at the Book Fair. She read What is Thanksgiving? by Elaine Landau

Some of the other books that we read this week are:
Feast for 10 by Cathryn Falwell
Thanks for Thanksgiving by Julie Markes
Betty Bunny Loves Chocolate Cake by Michael Kaplan
That's When I'm Happy by Beth Shoshan
Llama Llama Mad at Mama by Anna Dewdney

We finished the week by attending and performing in "Poetry in the Park!"
What a joy it was to watch the entire Early Childhood, Lower Division, and parents gather as a community!!

Monday 11/14 - Field Trip to Publix
Friday 11/18 - Playground 8:45 - 9:45
                      Exploring 9:45 - 10:45 Food Prep
                      Feast 11:00 approximately
We will need parents to help at exploring, put out the placemats, and help serve  the food.
11/19 - 11/27 - Have a healthy, happy thanksgiving vacation!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Fish Tales 10/31 ~ 11/4

We started the week by tasting the pumpkins seeds from our jack-o-lantern. Mrs. Samuel roasted them with a variety of spices. The ate one seed with each flavor including salt, garlic and cinnamon sugar. MmMm Good! Then they filled in a bar graph that corresponded to their favorite flavor. Ask your child which flavor they liked best!!

Artwork is often done with paper, crayons, glue, and so much more. At other times we draw on chalk boards and dry erase boards.

Toss the turkey was an indoor throwing game the children played. We encouraged them to throw underhand.

We opened up the listening center this week. The children listened to It's Mine by Leo Lionni in pairs. This is a delightful story of  3 frogs fighting to sit on rock island. In the end teamwork prevails!

We talked about Thanksgiving and decorated paper to form a Native American teepee. We looked at pictures of teepees and Seminole Indian Chickees in books. We talked about how the Native Americans in Florida built their chickees and added palm fronds on the roof.
 In the teepee, books, dolls, a loom, and musical instruments are there for the children to use as tools for their imagination.

We used the gathering drum with Mrs. McIvor in music.

We talked about different ways that we tell time by using a clock, a calendar, a watch, and through the seasons. We learned the following poem:

Name the seasons
4 in all
Winter is when the weather is cold, 
Spring is when the flowere grow, 
Summer is when the weather is hot, 
And Fall is when the leaves fall from the trees to the ground.

We checked the Magic Basket and found scissors. We practiced snipping strips of paper and glued the snips onto leaves to create "Fall" leaves.

Mixing red, orange, brown, and black paint with rollers on a banner paper was our center time activity on Thursday. This paper became the trunk of the classroom tree where our leaves are hanging. Take a minute to stop by the classroom to see it.

 Mrs. Williams was our Mystery Reader. She read The Twelve Days of Winter by Deborah Lee Rose.

Exploring activities this week included using the gathering drum, decorating paper to create individual drums, and dancing with them. We created turkey hats and a turkey snack.
Mrs. Samuel goes to school! The classroom teachers attended the National Association for the Education of Young Children National Convention in Orlando. It was an amazing three days filled with sessions about brain research, teaching strategies, nationally known singers, and so much more. Mrs. Samuel takes a moment for a photograph with Dr. Drew. He is the inventor of blocks that we use throughout the year. The children use these blocks to create roads, corrals, buildings, a sleigh, and so much more.

~Dates to Remember ~
Poetry in the Park - 11/11 - 8:30 Lower Division Quad amongst the pine trees. Please bring a chair or a blanket to sit on. We ask that you drop your child off in car line. You may join us at snack time in the classroom at intermission.
Field trip to Publix - 11/14 - 9:15 - We need several parents to help with this trip.
Please email Mrs. Samuel or send in a note if you can help.
We will be touring and buying the food for our feast.
Thanksgiving Feast - 11/18 - 9:30 Exploring
Feast - 11:00 - The children will begin to eat at approximately this time.
We will need parents to help at exploring and others to help serve up the food. Thanks!