KinderGARDEN

Mrs. Plett's Class Blog

Archive for Literacy

Class Updates

If you have not returned the report card envelope, please send it in your child’s mail bag on Monday.

Morning Drop-off – when dropping off your child in the morning, please make sure to stay with your child until they enter the school as there is no one supervising outside. The staff who is outside has other responsibilities and are not able to supervise your child. 

Home Reading

*All students are beginning with an A level book. As I read with each student, we will adjust as needed.
*At this point, Home Reading books are exchanged every Monday.
*Home Reading in kindergarten is intended as an activity done with a parent/guardian. The students are not expected to read the books independently at this stage.
*Repetition of a book is crucial for literacy development! If a student has “memorized” a book, that is okay! *Have your child point to each word as they read, rather than just saying all the words quickly.
*Do a letter hunt, where they need to find all the words that start with a specific letter. You could also do a word hunt of the high frequency words (ex. the, in, at, etc.).
*Encourage your child to “read” the book by looking at all the details in the picture.
*Ask questions through the book: What is happening in the picture? What do you think will happen next? What do you think this book will be about (before starting a new book). These all contribute to comprehension skills.

For more literacy ideas to support your child’s learning at home, check out the helpful tips and tricks tab or click on the link http://schoolblogs.rockyview.ab.ca/kindergarden/tips-and-tricks-for-parents/

Kindergarten Spring Performance

Thursday, April 11
Dress Rehearsal at 10:30 – families are welcome to attend the dress rehearsal (there will be much better seating!)
Students need to arrive at 6:00 pm and go to their classroom.
Performance begins at 6:30 pm.
Students do not need to wear a costume. They can wear their favourite spring outfit. The morning classes will be wearing chick headbands that are being made at school.
Students can be dismissed directly from the stage. If any students do come back to the classroom (to grab coats, etc.), please only send 1 person to get them as the hallways get very congested and squishy!

Zoo Field Trip

Permission forms and online payments due Wednesday, April 10th.
If you have a zoo pass for your child, please send it in by Wednesday, April 10th.
Drop off is at the regular time (8:00 am) and pick up is at the kindergarten doors at 2:30 pm.
We still need 2 volunteers, so if you have submitted a police check to the office and are able, we would love to have you!
If you are able to volunteer for the zoo field trip or any future field trips, please be aware that any younger children are not able to come along.

Home Reading

Last Thursday, a blue Home Reading duotang was sent home with your child. On the inside cover is some tips on HOW to read with your kindergartener, then some information about our home reading program, a table where you can record the books you have read, and finally a pouch page to store the book.

Home Reading duotangs and books are to be returned to school every Monday.

When sending the duotang to and from school, please make sure it is placed carefully in the Mail Bag to keep the books safe and protected. They come in a set and are very expensive to replace the whole set. Please be sure to take care of them!

Happy Reading together!

Peek @ the Week(s)

Things have been busy in kindergarten the last couple weeks!

We have continued to learn more letters, so now we have learned how to print the upper & lowercase and also how the letter sounds for the following: F E D P B R N M H K L U V W X and Y. Continuing to practice these letters at home is a great way to reinforce concepts learned at school!

Subitizing is a fancy word for recognizing an amount without counting it individually (for example, using dice). The kids enjoy playing dice war with their friends! We are also going to start learning more about numbers 1-10 and how they can be represented in different ways (tally marks, 10 frames, etc.)

This last week, we started learning about our community with our student teacher, Ms. Smiley. We started with brainstorming what we already know or think about communities, what kinds of things we see and jobs around our community, and why they are important to our community. Ms. Smiley gave the kids a challenge to learn what their parents do for their jobs and how it can help our community. With your child, leave a comment below explaining what they learned about your (parents/grandparents) job and we can share it with the class next week!

Coming Up
– A few parents were having trouble receiving confirmation emails for subscription to the blog. I contacted the IT people and hopefully has been fixed. If you still haven’t received an email confirming your subscription, please let me know and I’ll fix it for you.

– TIME CHANGE THIS WEEKEND! Don’t forget to SPRING AHEAD an hour on Saturday night!

– Home Reading will be sent home hopefully this next week!

– Community Day Form – a form was sent home this week looking for parents who would be willing to participate in our Community Day and share about their job. Please return the bottom half of the form (keep the top half so you have the information!) by Wednesday, March 13th!

– Tuesday: library and music

Peek @ the Week

I would say I’m tired of this cold weather, but we have been so spoiled so far! However, this cold weather can move on now…

I hope everyone has had a great week, despite the bitter cold! I can’t believe January is already done… and we’re nearly halfway through February! This week was Parent/Teacher Conferences, and it was great to meet some of you. For those who I haven’t officially met yet, please know that if you have any questions, concerns, thoughts, or anything I am very open so contact me at any time! I may not respond on the weekends, but I will get back to you ASAP 🙂

Over the last couple weeks, we have wrapped up our sorting unit, where the kids learned to sort various items into groups based on a sorting rule (ex. I sorted them based on colour/shape/size/etc). They also needed to identify what the sorting rule was from presorted groups…. which was sometimes a bit trickier! This is something they can continue to practice at home as they will continue to do sorting and more in Grade 1. This week, we learned a new word: SUBITIZING. A big word that lots of adults don’t even know about! Ask your child what it means and see if they can tell you 🙂 We will be playing lots of fun games with dice and cards to practice subitizing. There is a Subitizing Game in the Games & Activities tab at the top menu bar. 

Daily 5 – We have been practicing Read to Self during Daily 5 times and building up stamina to stay on task the whole time. So far we are at 4 minutes as whole group, and will continue to practice! We have also been learning about choosing Good Choice Books for the kids book boxes, that they can change as needed. I have a MASSIVE library of my own at home, so leave a comment below with books and topics that interest you, and I’ll try and bring some to school!
Some parents have asked about reading with their kids at home. In kindergarten, it is not in the curriculum to learn how to read, however reading is SO IMPORTANT and can be done in many ways! Under the “Helpful Resources” tab in the menu bar, click on “Tips and Tricks for Parents” and there a number of ways you can read with your child at home. One way that isn’t mentioned there is to do a letter hunt through the book. We are learning different letters (uppercase, lower case and sounds) in class, so they can even choose a letter and then do a hunt through the book to find words that start with that letter. Lots of ideas! But regular reading at home is a very important habit to start now to help foster a love for reading!

I Am Unique – we will continue working on our Cree Star Blankets by drawing something that is unique to each of us on the diamonds that will be used to create the star. This last week, they kids designed 2 diamonds with something that they were interested in. The remaining diamonds will be a self-portrait, country they are from, favourite colour, name, and talents/gifts. These would be great to talk about at home to continue the conversation from school as well as help your child have a good understanding about themselves and what makes them unique/special.

Coming Up:
* Tuesday, Feb. 12 – Library & Music
* Thursday, Feb. 14 Valentine’s Day – students can bring in cards for all of the students in the class and we will have a class party. Snacks will be provided.
* Friday, Feb. 15 – NO SCHOOL (Professional Learning Day for staff)
* Feb. 18-22 – NO SCHOOL (Winter Break)

Peek at the Week

Happy Sunday!

I hope you all had another great week at school and a wonderful weekend together with your families!

This last week was another busy one! We have lots going on over the next few weeks especially, so our days have been jam packed. We are continuing to work on sorting in math by using one attribute and some even try to challenge themselves by using two attributes!

We are also continuing to learn more “Frog Jump Letters”; this week focusing on R and N. The kids had a good time learning what a Narwhal is and what a funny looking creature they are with their long unicorn-style horn…. which we learned is actually a long tooth! So far they have learned how to properly print both upper and lower case letters for Ff Ee Dd Pp Bb Rr Nn. Don’t forget to always start your letters at the top! 

This week we talked more about what the word “unique” means and how being unique is something special to each of us. We read the story “Chrysanthemum” about a little girl who had a unique name, but was something that made her very special. The kids brought home a sheet to fill out with their parents about what their name is and where it came from. Each of our parents chose our names special for us and it’s always interesting where the names came from! Please send the Name Homework tomorrow in your child’s mailbag if you haven’t done so already. The kids will start sharing about their names over the next couple days.

The class started learning about Daily 5 in December and we have continued to practice the first part this week. The kids learned about what a Good Choice book is, what is expected of us when we Read to Self, and then actually practiced choosing books, finding a spot around the class and reading on our own. So far as a whole class, we’re sitting at around 2.5 minutes where EVERYONE is on task the whole time, and we’re going to continue working on building stamina to read even longer! We’ll continue practicing Read to Self, choose books for their own book bins, and soon will open a new Listen to Reading centre! I am going to need a couple class librarians to help make sure the class library stays tidy and organized, so I’m going to be looking for kids who regularly treat books respectfully, are responsible, make good choices, and are willing to help!

Coming Up…

– Name Homework due Tomorrow!
– Book Orders due Thursday, January 24th
– Word Day on January 28th – Students will dress like something that starts with the same letter as their name
– Monday: Reading Buddies with 3Peterson
– Tuesday: Library and Music

Challenge: tell your parents what a Good Choice book is and what are some Good Choice books for you! 

Letter and Writing Practice

At parent conferences and the Celebration of Learning, a few parents were wondering about activities for additional practice with letter recognition and letter sounds. We are also working on the progression of writing, beginning with pretend writing (or inventive writing, which looks like scribbles or random letters put together to form “words”), and now are exploring sounding out each letter to try and spell words on their own (which has also turned into lessons and learning about perseverance and trying things to completion on their own…. :)). Please look at the following activities to try at home with your child! Remember that these are homework or expected to be completed at home…. it’s just if you are looking for some fun activities to practice with your child at home. These might be great ideas to do during the summer to help avoid the “summer slip” too and keep them ready for Grade 1!

~ no matter what activity you do, keep it fun! If it’s in the form of a game or activity, if it is fun it will be more engaging and therefore more effective 🙂

~ Letter Hunt: when you’re in the car or going somewhere, do an alphabet hunt looking for words that have a specific letter (ex. S in a STOP sign). You can also do the same thing by choosing a letter and finding things that start with that letter (ex. h sound “huh” – house). If you’re child is struggling with letter recognition and sounds, begin with only the letters in their name.

~ Memory – it’s a classic game, but a good one! You can easily make a set of uppercase and lowercase (mixed or individual) cards to use. There are also TONS of resources online that you could just print out and use as well.

~ Letter Matching Game – just like the good ‘ol fashioned game of matching, just with upper and/or lower case letters. You can also do this with matching pictures to beginning letter sounds too. Using clothespins, have your say the letter at the top of the card and attach the clothespin to the matching lowercase letter. 

~ Playdough: choose a letter (you can use the letter cards for the matching game) and have your child make the letter out of playdough (make sure they MAKE the letter, and not draw it in the playdough…. the fine motor skills practice is an added bonus!). You can also make it more challenging by showing them a picture card, they have to say the starting sounds, determine the letter, and then make the letter out of playdough.

~ Playdough and Lego: Using lego, have the kids form different letters in the playdough using the bumpy side of the lego. You can even use this to try spelling basic words (ex. it, in, mom, the, etc.). You can use the Alphabet cards as visual prompts, and then have your child say the letter and make it with playdough. 

~ Slap It! – Have alphabet cards and divide them in half (kind of like Slap Jack). When a letter that’s in his name comes up, he can slap it and say the letter before he can move on.

~ Letter Hunt in a magazine – Starting with the letters in his name, hunt through magazines to find the various letters (they will be in various fonts and styles), then cut out and glue onto a page or in a book. After a certain point, he can just find random letters and add to the book without focusing on a specific letter. 

~ Slides and Ladders – includes a board for both Upper and Lower case letters. When playing the game, it will be important for your child to identify and say the letters that they are landing on, climbing up to, or sliding down to. 

 

At RMS, our Early Literacy teacher, Miss Imorde, has a wonderful blog with ideas as well as other blogs she follows (see links below). If you type in your email address to follow the blogs that you’re interested in, then they will send you updates with new blog posts that they do so you don’t have to keep going back to check!

This Reading Mama blog:  http://thisreadingmama.com/category/alphabet-activities/

This Measured Mom blog:  http://www.themeasuredmom.com/learning/

Miss Imorde’s blog:  https://readingtipsforhome.wordpress.com/

 

3D Shape Hunt

Today Miss Benson introduced 3D shapes to the class! We watched a video, read a poem and even did a shape hunt around our classroom.

Challenge:  At home tonight with your family, go on a 3D shape hunt around your house to find some more 3D items! Take pictures and/or post what you find in the comments for us to share next week! 

Shape Name Game video: http://viewpure.com/pQ5mZIInE6s?ref=search

 

 

Dress like your Favourite Book Character

Just a reminder that this Monday is “Dress like your Favourite Book Character”. I did tell the kids that this doesn’t mean that you have to go panic costume shopping though!! Just get a little creative and dress like a favourite book character 🙂

A few back-from-break updates

~ Thursday, March 2nd is Plaid Shirt Day!!

~ Home Reading:
1. New Home Reading duotangs went home with each student today. The very first page outlines what the Home Reading program looks like… it’s not very intense, so please don’t stress! We just really want the kids to practice and make a routine of regular reading with someone as it is a great “habit” to start! The kids are encouraged to challenge themselves by finding familiar words (as we begin some sight words in class…which I will post later once we start for your information), but also to learn to follow along with the words while someone reads TO THEM. If they are comfortable with trying to read the story themselves, that is a great challenge for them! But it is not expected at kindergarten level to be reading (just an fyi for parents to be aware of!). On that first page, there are also a number of various activities to do during home reading.
2. The pink page is the log to keep track of the books they have brought home and read.
3. Please make sure that the Home Reading Books are kept in the plastic page protector pouch to avoid damage to the books.
4. Home Reading duotangs/books are to be returned the same days as your child’s library books are due.
Morning Class: Monday
Afternoon Class: Thursday

Please make sure that they are returned weekly.

Today’s challenge: the kids noticed that there were only 28 days in February when there are usually 30 or 31. My challenge to you (parents and kids) is to find out WHY there are only 28 days and report back to us tomorrow to share what you learned! Feel free to leave a comment below on this post too! 

January Updates

Please carefully read the following updates and reminders specific to kindergarten. The general school newsletter should be coming out soon as well.

~ As the weather seems to be getting warmer (hopefully it lasts!!), we will be going to play outside more as long as it isn’t too cold. Even though it’s warm, please make sure to still send snowpants and gloves with your child as they often want to play on the massive snow piles and make snowman, making their hands cold and their pants wet.

~ The field trip forms were due last Friday, so if you have not yet sent in the form and paid online, please do so asap.

~ Field Trip: Our field trip next Tuesday is an in-class program put on by Teachers Pet organization (which means it will be at Ralph McCall, so we won’t be off-site). We still are in need of a couple more volunteers for both the morning and afternoon class, so if you are able to come (and have your police check handed in to the office) please let me know!!

~ We have started the Listening to Reading centre as a part of our Daily 5 literacy program and need headphones for each student. If you have not already sent in labelled headphones in a ziploc bag, please do so asap. 

~ Our kindergarten OT (Occupational Therapist) is starting to talk with all the kindergarten classes about recognizing and understanding different feelings (ex. sad, happy, excited, mad) and tools to use for each. Please see attached for further information about the Zones of Regulation program. This is also a program that is taught throughout each grade at Ralph McCall.

scanned letter and zones info

~ New book orders were sent home today and are due back by next Friday, January 27th. Please remember that these book orders make great gifts and also any orders submitted give the teacher/class bonus bucks to use towards more materials for the kids in class! So it’s a win/win 🙂

~ In our class, we are working on learning the different letters of the alphabet: upper and lower case, the sounds they make, and recognizing words that start with that letter. So far we have learned about M, S, T, B, F, C, R and A. We will also be learning about the letters L, P, O and D over the next few weeks.
CHALLENGE: try and find words that start with these letters at home! Show your parents how to write each of the letters, and don’t forget to always start your letters at the top!

 

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