font-family: 'Shadows Into Light Two', cursive;/ Life in Kindergarten

Monday, November 6, 2017

Learning to Read Words!

It has been an exciting couple of weeks here in kindergarten!  We started learning "popcorn words" (sight words) and strategies for reading new words.  Here's what we've been up to during Reading Workshop:
  • We learned two sight words, "I" and "the," and added them to our word wall.  The children are now on the lookout for these words in the books they are reading.  We call these words "popcorn words" because you need to know them as quickly as popcorn pops!
  • We learned our first strategy for reading an unknown word, Eagle Eye.  Eagle Eye reminds us to look at the pictures for clues about what the unknown word could be.
  • We reviewed that readers point and hop as they read words. 
  • We learned that readers pay attention to characters' facial expressions and body language throughout a story.  This gives us information about how characters are feeling and how their feelings might change during a story.
  • We practiced acting out stories. 
  • We learned that readers can think of connections they have within and between books.  They can mark those connections with a sticky note and then share those connections with a friend during buddy reading.

During Writing Workshop, we have continued our Looking Closely unit while also taking a detour last week to write stories about the storm.  We have learned to:
  • stretch words out slowly and write a letter for every sound we hear.

  • draw objects from multiple angles and label all the details.

  • write a sentence about the object.
  • write a story about something that has happened to us and stretch the story out across multiple pages.  I was so impressed with the stories the children wrote about the storm!
During Math we:
  • worked on counting a collection of objects and discussed strategies to use when the collection is set up randomly or in a circle.
  • reviewed the names of shapes, then created a bar graph to show the number of pattern blocks we received.

  • practiced sorting based on attributes.
  • solved number stories.
  • worked on mathematical writing to move from concrete math to more abstract math.
  • learned about a number line and played Bunny Hop to help us practice moving on a number line.
  • played a game called Ten Bean Spill to help us learn about combinations of ten.

During Science, we started a unit on the life cycle of a plant.  We talked about the needs of plants and animals, then set up an experiment to test what plants need in order to grow.  We will watch these plants grow over the next few weeks, and we will discuss our observations along the way.

During Word Work, we added a, g, d, and s to the letters and sounds we are practicing.  We have also been working on syllables, rhyming words, and sentence structure.

I know last week's storm took a toll on quite a few families.  I hope you are all back to feeling a sense of normalcy in your homes.

Have a great week!

Friday, October 20, 2017


We had a fun week learning about pumpkins.  Children got to pick their very own pumpkins from the pumpkin patch at Wolfe's Neck Farm, and they acted out the steps of the life cycle of a pumpkin.

Back in the classroom, we used the pumpkins for our looking closely writing unit.  Children closely observed their pumpkins, drew the details they noticed, and labeled their drawings. 

We also used the pumpkins for pumpkin math, introducing us to estimating and measuring.  The children were excited to learn that their pumpkins floated in water!

To wrap up our pumpkin study, we reviewed the steps of a pumpkin's life cycle, then did a retelling project.  Be on the lookout for these, and ask your child to tell you about the life cycle of a pumpkin.


In addition to learning all about pumpkins at the farm, the children also had the opportunity to visit and learn about animals.  It was a fun morning!


We had a great week of learning!  Have a nice weekend.