Monday, December 14, 2009

What We Have Been Doing!

From La Jolla Shores Market

This past Wednesday we completed our last field trip to Avenida de la Playa and are now beginning to reflect on all that we have learned. We have been so fortunate to be part of such an amazing community and the children have gained knowledge and experiences that could never be taught in the classroom.
From Singles

In the classroom we have been learning how to make maps and what makes a community. The students have made maps of their classroom, Avenida de la playa and of course their neighborhoods!
After learning about Maps we read the book Roxaboxen, which is a wonderful story about children and they town they created with their imagination. We then worked in small cooperative groups to make our own towns.

Roxaboxen 1 from Lisa J on Vimeo.

Roxaboxen from Lisa J on Vimeo.

From Singles

Thank you to all of the wonderful guest chefs we have had over the past few months. This past Monday we joined Lisa B’s class to read “The Runaway Tortilla” by Eric A. Kimmel. The children made tortillas from scratch and enjoyed making their own restaurant menus and puppets.

Untitled from Lisa J on Vimeo.

In Book Buddies we continued our exploration of domino math by playing “1-2-3 Flip”.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

All About Avenida


The children have been busy learning about their community. We have been so fortunate to have the support of our families, the businesses and all of the community members surrounding Avenida de la Playa. The students enjoyed golfing a morning of golf, tennis, gardening, touring and enjoying milk and cookies by the pool. Please click on the LJBTC album tab to see some photographs of our trip.
From Dentist & Hotel

During our trip to the dentist the children learned how to make a silver/gold tooth, what dentists do if they need have a cavity and what they use to make your gums numb. After our trip to the dentist we visited our neighbors at Hotel La Jolla. We learned that there are 108 rooms and that we can see our school from the top floor! The highlight of the trip was getting into the shower and raising and lowering the shower covering (see the Hotel/Dentist album).
From Surf and Kayak

This past Friday we visited all of our favorite ocean sport stores. At Surf Diva J.L counted all of the hats he could find and told us that there are 159 hats! At Rusty’s Boardhouse we learned that Rusty is the name of the man who shapes all of the boards. Corey at La Jolla Kayak taught us how to paddle a kayak and even let us put on life jackets and get in (thankfully we stayed on dry land!).

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Our Guest Scientist!

From Guest Scientist

On Wednesday, S.H and his mom were our guest scientists!
"The experiment was from my grandma. My mom was actually not the helper, actually my grandma was. My grandma told my mom and my mom forgot a little bit. We poured chemicals into the cabbage water and it turned different colors. One turned green, one turned pink and one turned blue. The water was purple when we started. We got to wear scientist goggles because if the chemicals went on your eyes it would burn. Some of the chemicals smelled kind of weird so we wafted the smells. To waft the smells we moved our hand toward our nose to move them smell to our nose. We wafted the smell because you don't want to get the chemicals inside your nose because it might go up the nostril and down and out the other nostril." ~S.H

Our Visit to Station #9

From Fire Station #9

On Tuesday we went on a field trip to the La Jolla Fire Station #9. This was the first of eight trips we will go on throughout our community study of Avenida de la Playa. The children were able to ride in the fire truck, find a hidden firefighter in the dark and wear "Firefighter Steve's" boots, pants, jacket and helmet. On the tour the children asked the firefighters questions about being a firefighter (see below). It was a great trip, thank you to all of the parent volunteers who made it happen.
• Is there a helicopter and pole? A.H
We have two helicopters at other stations, but we don’t have a pole.
• Do you have a pumper, a hook and ladder and a brush breaker truck? L.A.
Yes. There are all different kinds of rigs that attach to a truck. We have a pumper truck with 1,000 gallons of water and a 1,000 feet of hose and a pump. This is called a “fire engine”.
• What is it like to be a firefighter? J.L.
It is great and a lot of fun.
• What are your names? S.H.
Andy, Steve, Rich and Karen.
• How do you put out the fires? F.V.
Normally we use water.
• How do you put out brush fires? D.L.
We drive off road and use water and shovels.
• How do you use the brush breaker? D.R.
The brush breaker trucks drive off the road and have bigger wheels. They hold less water, because they are smaller, and we also use shovels.
• How do you breathe in the air mask and how does it connect to the tank? J.B.
The air mask is attached to the air tank with a tube.
• How do the helicopters dump out the water or chemicals? J.B.
Helicopters have a “door” with a bucket and they push a button to open the door. It’s like pouring out a glass of water.
• How do you put on your mask? A.H.
You have to attach the mask to the air tanks, because you need air when walk into a smokey fire.
• How do you put on your pants? A.A.
We put them on at the same time as our boots.
• How do you put on your boots? M.F.
They are attached to our pants, so we just step into them.
• How many fires have you put out? LM.W
There have been too many to count!
• Are there any girl fire fighters? Q.G
• Do you take people to the hospital for surgery? P.B
Yes. We have an ambulance that will take them there if the need to have surgery.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Fun On the Playground

From Fun On the Playground

On Friday during lunch recess some children decided to make a human flower while others were learning to fly (see album). Needless to say, fun was had by all!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Pumpkins Galore

From Pumpkins and Butterflies

Lots of sharing in kindergarten has been occurring. Last week Q.G was kind enough to share the special release of her butterflies with us. To see more photos of the release, click on the photo above and it will link you to the Picasa album. D.L also shared the book Ten Red Apples with us. As we read the book we “flashed” the numbers 1-10 and discussed the different ways to flash numbers with our fingers. J.B also brought in a book about a class that wanted to count pumpkin seeds. After reading the story we learned that the number of seeds in a pumpkin depends on the number of ridges on the pumpkin. The following day we opened up our own pumpkins and roasted our own pumpkin seeds. After roasting them we were so excited to eat them that we completely forgot to count them! We did find out that the small pumpkin had the most seeds, followed the big pumpkin.
From Roasting Pumpkins

The Estrada family gave us our very own BIG Pumpkin. After measuring it we got to paint it, then wash it. To see activities we have done around our BIG Pumpkin click on the photo and you can follow the adventures of our pumpkin.
From Painting Pumpkins

In Math the children worked in small groups or independently to solve the math problem “Dominic and David want to count the seeds in their pumpkin. 5 seeds fit on the plate. If Dominic and David have scooped out ___ seeds, how many plates will they fill?” Each problem was individualized for each student.
From Math Problems

Monday, October 12, 2009

Where Is The Cat in the Hat?

On Monday we arrived at school with a message from The Cat in the Hat, stating that he has run away and is off on an adventure. The children decided that they need to follow "clues" to find our missing cat. Below are the clues they found while they were at recess.

Cat Clues! from Lisa J on Vimeo.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Before making our own pumpkin and apple pies the children have been working in collaborative groups to determine what ingredients we will need. LM and AA have decided to take this activity to the next level...

Pumpkin Song from Lisa J on Vimeo.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

A Busy Week in Kindergarten

What a week it has been! The children continued their apple study this week with measuring the height of our apples, singing an apple song with Lauren, using watercolors to paint an apple growing from a branch, comparing apples, hypothesizing on why apples were only growing on the top of one of our apple trees and brainstorming all of the things we can do with apples!

During Writer's Workshop the children continued to gain independence in stretching out their words and using a 2 finger space between each word. We finished our review on the leapfrog letters (F,E,D,P,R & B) and began our review on starting corner letters (H, K, N, & M). The focus of our handwriting has been bumping the lines and starting the letters at the top. If your child is writing at home please encourage them (or ask them to show you how) to properly form these letters.

In Math this week we began exploring the calendar and figuring out how to count the days we have been in school. The children suggested that we use the snack sign up calendar and our sign in sheets to tally our days in school so that is what we did. After determining that we had been in school for 15 days we explored all of the different ways to count to 15 (skip counting by 2's, 3's and 5's) and represent 15 (tallies, 15, buildings of 15 things) .

We also continued to solve word problems in our math notebooks. This week the children all worked on a subtraction word problem. Below you can see video's of the different methods students use to solve the same problem. SH chose to use his mental math, AH used blocks and JL used a picture. After solving the problem they explained their method to their classmates.

SH Pumpkin Problem from Lisa J on Vimeo.

JL Solving an Apple Problem from Lisa J on Vimeo.

AH Solves An Apple Problem from Lisa J on Vimeo.

In Book Buddies this week our second grade Book Buddies taught us how to play the math game "Poison Apple". After playing a few rounds we had some time to read our favorite books. This week I was also able to read with each of your children to determine which books would be "Just Right" for them. Everyone was very excited to read and I am looking forward to teaching them new strategies and making them their book baggies..

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Keeping Busy in Kindergarten!

The children have been busy getting used to their classroom routines, exploring new materials, making friends and learning new math and writing strategies. Last week the children were introduced to “Sharing the Pen”. This is an opportunity for the children to mix their inventive spelling with the conventional spelling patterns of words they would like to write. We will be using this strategy throughout the year and it is a great strategy to use at home when your children want to write with “book spelling”.

This week we had a lesson on how to write our Weekend Reports independently while focusing on stretching out our words and using spacing between each word. The children worked really hard and did an amazing job. This week they also began working on solving word problems in their math books. We had lessons on how mathematicians draw pictures without detail to help them solve problems and they also worked on using their words to describe our problem solving strategies to their classmates.

On Tuesday we had our first shared job time with friends in Room 6. We read the big book "Apples and Pumpkins" and discussed some of the differences between the apples and pumpkins. The children then solved a math problem with Lisa B and wrote about whether or not they would like to learn about apples or pumpkins with Lisa J.

On Wednesday we reviewed how to write the letters F, E, D, R and P. We focused on bumping the lines while starting all of the letters at the top, then leapfrogging back up to complete the letter. Our Book Buddies came to our classroom to participate in some of our favorite jobs (legos, playdough, building trains, free choice art etc.). The children have had a busy few days and I am looking forward to many more!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Magical Monday and Terrific Tuesday

“On Monday morning Jesse helped us with morning jobs. After morning meeting we went to art with Carrie. We made a self-portraits on a piece of paper. We used colored pencils, markers and sharpies. For free choice at art we played with clay. In music we got to try all these different new instruments. One of them, you put your hand gently on the beads and you spin the handle and it makes a cool noise. After recess we went to Todd Time. At Todd Time we played Mr. Fox. After peaceful time we had a lesson on stretching words out. We pictured the word like a piece of bubblegum, then we chewed the bubblegum (word) in our mind then we stretched out the words to hear all of the letters and stretched it again and again and again until we wrote the last letter of the word. At the end of a thought (sentence) you put a dot (period).
Today after morning meeting Lisa A came in and talked to us about germs and washing our hands. She told us that when you cough, you should cough into your arm (not your hand). She told us that when you wash your hands you have to sing the whole alphabet. When you are done singing the alphabet you are done washing your hands! During job time at the Horseshoe table we made a book about our family. At the Little Low table I finished my butterfly bead thing. At the Rectangle table we grabbed bears and drawed how many we got and wrote down the number. Like 5 blue bears, 3 red bears and 2 green bears. At the Red Spin table we writed peoples names and we counted how many letters there are in their name. Two times I got 13 and one time I got eight. In the wet exploration table there was little magnet thingies, some of them were balls and some of them were flat round things. I was playing with J.B and D.R. In Spanish we writed our name and then we writed our school name TCS and then we drawed a picture of the school. I drawed the blacktop, the tree house, the basketball hoop and my brother’s classroom. During read aloud we readed another book by Peter H. Reynolds called The North Star. It was about this boy that was going on a journey and he saw a star. At the end of the book it said ‘The Beginning’ instead of ‘The End’ because it was the beginning of his journey.” ~M.F

Friday, September 11, 2009

Our Hopes and Dreams

“Today at community meeting they showed us some new shirts and a video. After community meeting I went back to the classroom and played with play dough. After morning meeting we had job time. My have to job was to draw what I wished for kindergarten. I wished that the classroom was made out of toys. At the sparkle table there were crafts. It was really hot today. At Todd Time we played musical hoops and tunnel tag. After recess I visited Ryan in Room 2.” ~J.L
Below are the hopes and dreams of friends in Room 5:
“To surf and catch butterflies.” D.L
“To learn to read.” LM.W
“I want to learn to read.” Q.G
“Learn about volcanoes.” P.B
“The classroom (will have) has Lego's around.” A.H
“Run on the tires.” J.B
“To learn about bugs.” S.H
“To learn about tigers.” M.F
“To learn about camping.” D.R
“I want to learn about sharks.” A.H
“I want to learn to count to 101.” L.A
“I want to learn about dogs.” A.A
“Learn about dinosaurs.” F.V
“The classroom was made of toys.” J.L

Thursday, September 10, 2009

The Dot

Today we began our mini author study on Peter H. Reynolds by reading The Dot. While we read the story the children made connections between the frustration they feel when they cannot come up with an idea and the feeling Vashti was having in art class. Throughout the story the children discovered hidden dots and the illustrators artistic style. Below is a reflection of our day from J.B.
“After morning meeting we went to Spanish with Isabel. In Spanish we drawed pictures of animals doing stuff. They kind of dance. After Spanish we went back in the class and we read The Dot and Super Puffy. During job time I went to Legos and builded two guys with helmets that had a screen that lifted up and down. I also builded a guy with a jet pack and a police and a doctor holding a guy with a skateboard. At the Sparkle table I painted lots of dots. I painted yellow and blue dots. First I put the yellow then I put the blue. At the Red Spin table I colored dots with the oil pastels. At the Horseshoe table I made a calendar, writed words and drawed a picture. This year in kindergarten I want to learn all about Snow Leopards.” –J.B

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Our First Day of Kindergarten

The children survived their first day of kindergarten. We spent the day exploring around our classroom, naming our tables and making friends. Below you will find their first blog post of the year!
“I feel happy.” M.F
“I am looking forward to our field trips at school.” L.A
“I like school because you get to play. My favorite table is the Sparkle Table. I also like surfing.” A.H
“I had a great day. My favorite part was peaceful time because I got to read books.” J.L
“I started out the day happy, but I turned out exhausted. I am exhausted because I did a lot of work.” S.H
“I had a good day and I feel happy.” D.L
“I had a great day.” D.R
“I had a fun time playing with the Lego’s.” F.V
“I am exhausted from drawing.” A.H
“My favorite part of the day was recess because I love to do tricks on the blue bars!” L.W
“I liked finding the caterpillar. I put it in a cup in my parent file.” Q.R
“I was really really sad because I fell on my face and landed my eye on a tire.” J.B
“I had a fun day in kindergarten. I went to the movie theater yesterday!” A.A