Now that it is well and truly March we are packing up our play-doh model of the layers of the earth, our layers of the earth coloring sheets, garbage sorting game, and land and water forms. But we do so knowing we’ve achieved our goal of sparking the magic tinder of interest. The first half of February focused on the continents, the layers of the earth, and Valentine’s day. It wasn’t until the third week of February that we unpacked our Land and Water forms, trays with ceramic models of land forms like peninsulas, island, an archipelago and water forms like lakes and river. Along with our model volcano (which the children did not independently erupt) the land and water forms were this month’s most popular additions to the classroom.
The two group-lesson highlights were definitely our volcano eruption and last week’s visit from a geologist friend of mine who talked a small group of children through our three boxes of Igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic rock as well as doing a short circle where he passed around rock examples and shared the definitions with the group.
This month we’ll be studying animals with a focus on classification of types, this year Martha has decided to start with everyone’s favorite fauna: dinosaurs! From the oldest reptiles we’ll start looking at classifying animals by kingdom, by continent, as well as by type. It should be a great time!
I believe that the content based themes are so exciting because somewhere in the year’s curriculum is an idea that will light a child up, a topic or a theme that will wind it’s way into their play and drive them to make leaps of understanding or concentration. A favorite incident of this among the staff occurred on the playground when John and Karina observed a large group of children dragging, fanning and pushing a puddle (lake!) on the playground into a river that emptied into a tributary of sand.
Facebook group, Twitter, & our Spring Play, Peter and the Wolf
I’ve been thinking for a long time about how to informally share information about things going on in the neighborhood, articles, or theme related pictures and ideas without cramming your inboxes full, a parent suggested a Facebook group and here we are!
And the first thing I wanted to share with you is about our Spring Play, Peter and the Wolf. I’ve hidden two Peter and the Wolf easter eggs on the Facebook page, hint: David Bowie is involved. Go check it out!
I’ve posted links to our Facebook as well as the twitter account we made to monitor police activity in the neighborhood. Feel free to follow us on twitter but I don’t plan to follow anyone from our account to keep the feed all police activity.
♬♬ Music Notes ♬♬
This month in music class we’ll be listening to ‘Peter and the Wolf’!! This is my favorite music for this time of the year, and not just because spring starts this month and the classroom theme is Animals. We’ve spent so much of the year really analyzing music and identifying the different instruments by sight and sound – our composer Prokofiev now hands us characters for each instrument! It’s a wonderfully fun way of really solidifying what we’ve learned!
We will of course sing animal themed songs, and I’ll bring in instruments and we’ll dance our way through the month. The kids are getting more advanced in their musical games as well. We will continue to work on the skill and the art of listening!
In February we listened to JAZZ music!! One of the things I try and teach about jazz is that it’s a form of music in which anything can happen. To help illustrate that point, we had a ‘music grab bag.’ Each class I chose a student to blindly pick a cd out of the bag and we listened to whatever they choose!
I also brought a saxophone and clarinet for the kids to look at and learn about. And of course, we sang songs, danced and had a grand old time!!
Dates on the Horizon
April 5th, 2013 MDA Hop-a-Thon, 10-11am
April 12th, 2013 Spring Party and Play (6-8pm)
April 15-19, 2013 Spring Break (NS)
April 26, 2013 Parent Teacher Conferences (NS)