Friday, September 30, 2011

Our trip to Green Mountain Orchard

Today was our field trip to Green Mountain Orchard in Putney.  We had the BEST time!!  There were so many things to do and see.  We had a cider doughnut and apple cider for snack.  We made apple cider using an old fashioned press and our big Kindergarten muscles! We took a hike around the orchard, visited the horses, had a picnic lunch and picked out a small pumpkin/ gourd to bring home. We had fun picking lots and lots of apples!  Enjoy them, they are delicious!  Thank you so much to all the parents and siblings that went with us.  It was a terrific day!

Here we are when we arrived at the orchard!

enjoying a delicious snack!
we love this snack!

making apple cider with a press

It tasted delicious!

see how many apples we picked

fun times with friends

having fun picking apples

there are so many apples on these trees

my bag is heavy!


our new friend

lunch time!

We are hungry!

here are our pumpkins - big and small!

we had the BEST day!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Fun with hats!

Happy birthday Johnny Appleseed!
On Monday, we celebrated Johnny Appleseed's birthday!  We have been reading books about him and were quite excited to find out that it was his birthday.  Here we are with our high school intern, Sarah, wearing our hats!

Monarch butterflies!
Today we had Four Winds and we learned about insects!  We had so much fun learning about the changes they go through from egg to an adult.  We made these great Monarch butterfly hats as part of our learning.  The kids were so CUTE!!!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Fly away!

waiting for her to take flight
Today we set free the last two Monarch butterflies that we raised.  One was a boy and one was a girl!! How can we tell the difference?  Ask your child! They should be able to tell you that a male has two black spots on their wings and a female does not. 

up close look before flying away  

We spent time talking about their long flight or migration to Mexico.  This has fit in perfectly with the change of seasons and temperature.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Terrific Thursday!

Listening to a favorite story

Even though it was rainy, we had a terrific Thursday!  We started off the day with class pictures - they were so CUTE!  Mr. Paciulli read us his favorite book The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown and he even wore his new bunny tie!

Welcome little butterfly!
Our second butterfly came out today! It has been so exciting for the children to observe this life cycle in our classroom. Bringing nature into classroom is so important to develop an appreciation for it. This afternoon released our monarch butterfly in the garden with some of our other Kindergarten friends!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Beautiful butterflies!

Watching our butterfly dry out her wings      
Today was such an exciting day!  Our first Monarch Butterfly emerged from her chrysalis this afternoon!  We gave her a chance to dry her wings and gather up some strength before taking her out into the garden to let her go.  It was an amazing sight!

handprint butterflies that we made for open house
I hope that you enjoyed open house this evening!  These are our beautiful handprint butterflies that we made to hang up for the event.  These certainly we will be a keepsake of their first month of Kindergarten.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Full days begin!

Our Campsite
Today is our first full day of Kindergarten!  After our wonderful transition period of half days, today is another milestone.  One of the most popular times of the day is choice time!  During choice time, the children eat their healthy snack and also get to make a "choice" of something that they would like to do.  We have a wide variety of activities open and those activities change every couple of weeks. Today the children were very excited to see a campsite open in housekeeping!  This goes along with our theme of fall and apples.

Choice Board

Each child has a choice circle that they hang on the tack under the choice they would like.  If there is not a tack, the children know that choice is full and they will have to wait until a friend leaves. We are having a wonderful first full day!!  Hope to see all of you at open house tomorrow, September 20th at 5:30pm!!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Kindergarteners are harvesting!

Welcome to the Academy School Garden!

All of our hard work during Kindergarten camp has paid off!  We have started harvesting cherry tomatoes and celery that we have been eating during snack time.  We will also be digging potatoes, large tomatoes and celery that we will be using in soup that we will be sharing with you! Mark your calendars and reserve Tuesday, November 22nd in the afternoon for our special Stone Soup annual family event!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Hooray! Literacy and Math Times Begin!

fun with tops!!

This week we have started to pull more academics into our schedule.  We have been working with our names in literacy centers.  All of centers are fun and are both academic and social.  It has been a great way to learn about one another.  We have started learning about the letters of the alphabet and the sounds they make through a curriculum called FUNdations.  This program introduces anywhere from one to three letters per week.  It teaches each letter in a distinct sequence and with a letter name - keyword - sound.  We also work on being able to write each letter properly.  Do you know what this weeks letter was? (Hint: check the picture above)  Tt - top - "t"  We are working on making sure that we clip the letter sound short: "t" instead of "ta", this is VERY important!!  There were so many children who didn't know what a top was or had never played with one that I put some out at choice time.  It was a very popular choice and lots of fun was had!!!

geoblock city creation
This week we have also begun math time!  Our school uses TERC investigations as the primary math curriculum K-5.  We have spent this week exploring the various math manipulatives we will be using during the year.  Needless to say, they don't even know that this is math time! It is just a time to be fun and creative!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Star Person of the Day

Yesterday we had our first "Star Person of the Day"!!!  Each day for the next 14 days I will choose a student's name out of our star jar.  This person then is treated like a star for the day.  We interview the star to find out how old they are, what they like to eat, their favorite color and to find out something that they like to play.  This person gets to wear a star necklace and be the line leader for the whole day.  The other part of being the star is that we focus on that student's name.  We look at how many letters are in their name, what letter is in the beginning, what is at the end and we try to name other objects that start with the same letter sound.  We also sing to the star (to the tune of "Twinkle, twinkle little star"): "Special, special, special star.  How we wonder who you are. ___________ are you here today? Stand up tall and then we'll say.....welcome, welcome special star we're so glad your who you are!"  The most fun is when we cheer that child's name as loud as we can! This is a great activity for the beginning of the year to get to know each student and for literacy awareness.  The kids are excited to see who will be the next STAR!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Academy Stars

Be A Star poster

One of the things we have been focusing on since the beginning of school is what it looks like to "Be A Star".  The above poster can be seen in every classroom and common area at Academy School. These are the shared expectations we have for the students while at school.  This common language will be helpful not only as children leave the classroom and go to special classes, but also as they move on through the grades.  My Kindergarteners have been working hard to learn about and meet these expectations and become "Academy Stars".

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Our "First" Day

Our Kindergarten Camp mural created after reading the book "Tops and Bottoms"
We had a terrific "first" day today!  All of the children seemed very comfortable and happy to be in Kindergarten. I think that some of that is the result of coming to Kindergarten camp last June. Friendships are being formed and routines are being established. This class very much wants to learn to read - what a great goal!  They were so proud of themselves because they read 5 words today! Those 5 words are just the beginning of our wonderful adventure to become readers.......