Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Happy Holidays!

Wishing everyone a happy holiday season! See you 2015! Love, Mrs. Parzych and her little reindeers!!!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Gingerbread Read Aloud

Mr. Paciulli and Ms. O'Neill read the story Gingerbread Man to all of the Kindergarteners at Academy School.  They also brought in a special treat.... gingerbread cookies!!  They were delicious!

Special time with Mr. Paciulli and Ms. O'Neill


Holiday Sing-a-long

Jen came in today to do a holiday sing-a-long with the class.  It was so much fun!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Pajama and Movie Day

Today was pajama and movie day in all three Kindergartens! Everyone wore their pjs that wanted to and we watched the movie Balto.  They looked so cute! It was a fun time for all of us!

Pajama Day!

Gingerbread Word Hunt

Yesterday we had fun searching around our room for gingerbread "real" words and "nonsense" words. After our work was done, we had a small gingerbread cookie treat. We had so much fun!

"real" word

"nonsense" word

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Gingerbread Man STEM project: Part 2

The Kindergarteners were so invested in working on their traps, we actually had to devote a second day to complete them.  Each child had an opportunity to share their trap and explain their thinking about how it would work. I am so impress by the quality of their work and the level of knowledge that they have gained over the last couple of weeks.  They are simply amazing!

Working on his trap

One of the amazing traps designed by my Kindergarteners

Each student got to explain how their trap worked

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Gingerbread Man STEM Project: Part 1

Last week the Kindergarteners were introduced to the story of The Gingerbread Man.  We spent lots of time reading and rereading the traditional version of this story.  We created charts looking at the setting, characters, problem and solution as well as the beginning, middle and end. The problem in this story is that the Gingerbread Man ran away from the old woman and old man.  As a group, we decided to try to catch him.  Then, we watched a video about two children trying to "trap" a cat so they could give it a bath. This video helped us think about the best ways to make a trap to capture the Gingerbread Man.  Lots of work went into this STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) project!  It was amazing!

making a blueprint of her trap

getting right to work on their traps

very hard at work

step-by-step sequence of creating a trap

Monday, December 8, 2014

Kindergarten Engineers

Last week we began an integrated thematic unit around the story of the Gingerbread Man.  Part of this unit was an in-depth look at what engineers do.  We defined an engineer as someone who uses tools to solve problems. In order to prepare the students for this level of thinking, we put out recycled materials during choice time at our "engineering table".  Each day the students who chose to work at this table were presented with a different problem to solve.  For example..."build a bridge that can span between two chairs and hold an eraser" or "create a house that lets in light, but no rain." Amazing things were created at this center!

Talking about how to make their bridge strong enough.

Discussions took place and work continued to improve their design.

Final project - testing to see if it is strong enough

Gingerbread Bakery

In our classroom we have been reading many versions of the story of the Gingerbread Man. These stories have been so popular that we created a Gingerbread Bakery in our housekeeping area.  It is so cute to watch the students not only "bake cookies", but also wait on customers by taking their order.  Such fun is had in this area of our classroom!

The bakery is getting ready for business!
Behind the scenes sneak peek!

The cookies are almost ready.

One day our first grade friends came to visit for choice time to be our customers!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Snowshoeing Fun!

One of the great things about living in Vermont is being able to experience nature in different ways during the four seasons.  I thought it would be fun to share a new passion of mine with my Kindergarteners.  I was able to purchase 6 sets of snowshoes rather inexpensively and this has opened up a whole new world! Most of the kids had never been snowshoeing before, but after just one lunchtime adventure have fallen in love with it!  We spent time hiking around the playground and then went into the woods to access the Academy School nature trail.  We saw animal tracks - that was very exciting! We are all looking forward to spending more time on our new snowshoes once it snows more!!

Getting ready for our first adventure

We found some great tracks to look at. Maybe a deer had been there before us?

Exploring in the woods

Another group of adventurers

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