Last week, pre-kindergartners and kindergartners started to choose books to keep in their Book Boxes based on their individual reading levels and interest. We started to create personalized reading lists based on a list of specific topics and themes that the students show a special interest in. During the Book Boxes Reading Time, students quietly read their books on their own while the teacher meets with each one individually to read with them.
In Reading, students enjoyed listening to several books including “Johnny Appleseed” by Steven Kellogg; “Apple Trees and the Seasons” and “Apples, Apples, Everywhere” by Robin Koontz; “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you See?” by Eric Carle; and “Ten Apples Up on Top” by Dr. Seuss and Theo LeSeig.
In Writer’s Workshop, pre-kindergartners practiced writing their names and tracing over lines. Kindergartners, on the other hand, practiced writing the sight word “the” about 5 times through a technique called “rainbow writing.” Students used different colored crayons (rainbow colors) to write over the same word repeatedly. After learning how to trace and write the sight word “the,” students learned how to use “the” in a sentence. Students observed how to write a sentence using “the” and how to start a sentence using a capital letter, spacing, and a period at the end of the sentence. They then practiced writing sentences independently.
In Language (Literacy Skills in Reading and Writing), students continued practicing how to hold a pencil correctly. They worked on a “Parts of An Apple” activity: after listening to a read-aloud about Apples, they worked on a worksheet that helped the student “create the word,” “write the word,” and “find the word” that best described the part of an apple. This activity also involved learning the skill to use a pair of child scissors.
In Math, we focused on Core Knowledge skill of using “Quantity Words: One to Ten.” Students learned “10 Ways to Make 10” by using unifix cubes to mentally figure out how to add numbers in different ways so they can come up with a sum of 10. Based on their understanding, they also colored the on a 10’s worksheet the different ways to make 10 (e.g., they colored 6 orange pumpkins and 4 red apples make 10). Pre-Kindergartners also worked on writing Numbers 4, 5, and 6 on the Kindergarten Saxon Math worksheets and used teddy bear counters to count objects up to 6. They also used teddy bear counters to match a teddy bear with the corresponding color. They put together all the teddy bears (and added them up) based on the colors of each bear.
Kindergartners, on the other hand, worked on counting objects up to 15. Students did a few examples with the teacher. Then students wrote their answers down using white boards. They also talked about the word, “dice.” They played the “Roll and Color the Apples Game.” Each time they rolled the dice, the student colored the “same number” on the worksheet (e.g., 6) that corresponded to the number on their dice. Students worked on the 5 senses theme and used their mathematical abilities to learn the Core Knowledge skill of using “Quantity Words.”
In Science Discovery, students listened to the read-aloud “Apple Farmer Annie” by Monica Wellington to introduce our science experiment. First, students talked about different apple types and tasted 3 different kinds of apples (red, green, and yellow apples). They paid close attention to their five senses when tasting the apples. Second, each child was given a paper apple and colored it red, green, or yellow based on their favorite taste. Third, the students pasted their favorite apple on a poster board to create a class graph to show which apple students liked the most and liked the least.
After this whole group activity, each student was given their own “Our Apple Picture Graph Data” worksheet to complete. They made their own tally on the number of apples each student preferred based on red or green. They colored their own graph to show their understanding of how to make a graph based on the science experiment. Students then circled their conclusion on whether more or less people liked the red, green, or yellow apple. Students also described on another observation sheet the different characteristics of the apples using their 5 senses: sight (color, shape, size); smell (yummy, sour); touch (soft, smooth); hear (crunch) and taste (sour, juicy). Here are some samples of the sentences that students wrote:
Red had the most.
2 people liked green.
No one liked yellow.
To help students gain more knowledge in math, they were also asked to match numbers with the corresponding number of seeds inside a picture of apples on a worksheet.
In Visual Arts, students traced a big, red, paper apple and created their own “Big Juicy Red Apple Craft” with the parts of an apple on it. They pasted a poem on “Apples” in their Poem Journal. The kids also loved listening to the read-aloud “10 Apples Up on Top” by Dr. Seuss. After the read-aloud, they created a wonderful “10 Shiny Apples on a Person’s Head” portrait which you can see in the hallway!
In Virtue of the Month, students listened to the read-aloud “The Color of People” by Scott A. Labuda. This little book has a simple message: God made each of us special and the color of one’s skin is all part of God’s perfect plan. Each of us is born with the perfect color of skin, selected for us alone, by God Himself.