our first week of november...

sonny's house again! the kids loved playing with sonny's airplane, which tied in perfectly with our theme of maps and the globe. we made our own sand globes and talked about the earth's lithosphere by studying an image of the earth split in half.

we examined jars of water, soil and air and talked about the different reasons each is important to us. the kids then looked at different images of these natural elements and placed them in front of the appropriate jar. we read be a friend to trees which discusses types of trees and the different things they provide. we talked about how everything made of wood was once part of a tree, then we searched the classroom to find as many objects made of wood as we could. 

the kids paired up to make mud pies! we studied the soil by touch and smell before adding water to see how it changed the soil's texture. some liked how it smelled and felt while others thought it was too sticky and smelly.

i recently made a writing center equipped with paper, envelopes, pencils, markers and most importantly, a mailbox. we practiced writing letters to each other and the kids had a lot of fun putting their letters in the mailbox for their friend to open.

the kids have been exercising their storytelling abilities through puppet shows...

...and our felt board

they looooved pretending to be kittens! this turned into an all day theme- some were caged kittens, some were hungry kittens and some were mama kittens.

the kids practiced their cleaning skills by using the hand broom to get all the beans into the blue square and then sweeping them into the dust pan.

this week seemed to be a race against the clock! we only got through half of the projects i had planned- i underestimated how much time the kids would want to spend on each activity, which is great! although we tried to walk to the park every day, it was only until friday that we were successful- we spent so much time looking at things along our way that we always ran out of time and had to turn back!

october round up...

the kids had a lot of fun at theo's house. we practiced cutting pictures and gluing them onto paper to create a story. it was so interesting to watch what images they chose to cut out, as well as what sorts of shapes they made.

we had fun playing outside and practiced sharing toys and helping our friends...

marlowe started a game of frisbee that soon caught on with everyone!

taking a cue from a rainy week we focused on water. we read precious water and discussed why it is so important and how we use it every day. we also read down comes the rain and learned about the different forms of water vapor. we experimented with frozen water by watching it change from a solid to a liquid, as well as watching how a bowl of water can change to ice by putting it in the freezer. we put ice into a glass of water and watched condensation form around the glass. we experimented with putting objects in water and guessing if they would sink or float. the kids were great with keeping the water inside the tub and cleaning up any spilt water with a sponge.

we celebrated coco's birthday montessori style by lighting a candle (representing the sun, each ray symbolizing the different months of the year) and walking around the sun while holding a globe. this served as a basic introduction to the concept of months, days of the month, the earth, the sun, and how the earth revolves around the sun. as this was the first birthday celebrated at school the kids didn't fully grasp everything but as the year goes on we will be discussing this more. 

we've been practicing teamwork and sharing by working on projects together to create something as a pair or group rather than making individual art pieces. other ways we've practiced teamwork is by sharing juice boxes with a friend at snack time. it was so exciting to watch the kids pass their juice boxes to one another- there was never a problem with this! everyone was able to take a sip and pass it to their friend. i felt particularily proud during our picnic at prospect park with the tiny radders when the kids demonstrated their juice sharing skills. at the end of each day during circle time i now give a star to someone and they chose a friend to give that star to. even though i always say "you get what you get and you don't get upset" everyone likes to vocalize what color star they want. the beautiful thing is that the kids listen to each other and once they get a star they give it to the child who said they wanted that color.

halloween was a blast. we extended our celebration to two days rather than just one. the first day we had a halloween parade as we walked to a party hosted by the tiny rad kids. i explained that we would be the big kids and that it was our job to help out any tiny radders that might need assistance. i think everyone was a little shy- until a worm was discovered outside and everyone clambered around to inspect with their magnifying glasses. we had a small dance party followed by a story and pumpkin project before heading back to theo's for lunch.

the second day of our halloween celebration involved making play dough and chocolate dipped pretzels. we closed the doors and window shutters for a pitch black circle and story time with flashlights and a jack o' lantern, followed by a pitch black dance party! it was a lot of fun...