Friday, December 20, 2013

Happy Holidays!

The children got right to work when they arrived at school making presents, wrapping them, and decorating cards. We talked about how school is going to be closed for the holidays at Morning Meeting and that both teachers and children will not be in school. Nadia read I Smell Christmas

During Free Play, Scarlett and Brandon painted with liquid watercolor. Nico packed up her things to go on a bear hunt. Harry built a refridgerator and a tower. He and Jenny laughed together when he came up with the clever idea that both she and he can guess what it is. Then it was time for Yoga. Lakshmi is in California so a tecaher named Jen filled in for her. Nico and Scarlett were all smiles as they followed her movements while she sang.

We opened up the rooms so that the children could explore the other classrooms and they could visit ours. The Sunflowers and Daisies classes were so excited to see the light and rainbows in our room. They chased after the light trying to catch it. Then Monica, Nico's mom, came to read to the class. She read The Fire Truck By Peter Sis. The children took turns requesting songs to sing. We sang Twinkle, Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, The ABC'S, and Jingle Bells. Harry suggested wanted that we sing sing the songs really, really FAST! What fun! During lunch, we read Llama Llama Holiday Drama by Anna Dewdney and sang The Twelve Days Of Christmas.

Happy Holidays to you all! May it be merry and bright! Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

"And A Partridge In A Pear Tree..."

This morning we wrapped presents and decorated cards. During snack, Jenny played her recorder and then Hudson had a turn. The children had so much fun dancing with Elizabeth. Next, Max and Brandon went on a subway train ride and Brandon took pictures. Then we went on a dragon hunt. "Come on Max! You have to climb down the tree!" said Scarlett. 

Before Scarlett's Papa, Nathan, came to read to us we played instruments while listening to The Imagination Workshop Band. After Nathan read Brown Bear, Brown Bear by Bill Martin, Jr. and Eric Carle, we sang Old McDonald Had A Band. The children helped us read and sing The Twelve Days Of Christmas by singing " and a partridge in a pear tree"! 

Have a FUN break Hudson and Max! Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

"It Melt!"

At Morning Meeting, we revisited our experiment of  "what melts?" by examining the water we put in the fridge on Monday. The children were excited to see that the water had frozen and was "cold" when they touched it. Brandon said, "It turned into a rock." We kept the ice in the pitcher for the children to observe for the entire morning. During reflective circle, they looked to see if the ice had changed. Through touch and sight, they noticed that it was not only cold but it had also transformed into "water". "What happened?" Jenny asked. The class was silent and pensive for a moment. Then Lili shouted, "It melt! Hooray!"

After school, Lili is flying to Texas. During snack, she and her friends looked a map of the United States to see where New York City is, Texas is, and how far away they are from each other. Lili especially was excited by the map as she studied it for a long time. During Free Play, Harry noticed the light and some shadows reflecting on the wall. "Jenny! Jenny!" he shouted. "The shadow is moving along on the wall!" 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

"It's Tuesday!"

Max entered the classroom first ready to play with the dump trucks and snow in the sensory table.  He made truck sounds and said in a deep voice, "The snow is going to dump." Then in came Brandon followed shortly by Hudson. "It's snowing out guys!" Hudson said thrilled by the snowy day. 

During Morning Meeting, we sang Sticky Sticky Bubble Gum. Max and Hudson were jumping for joy when they saw the pictures from our field trip to Guitar Center in our picture frame. Then we watched a video of a woman playing a bassoon that Hudson shared with the class. The children shared with us other ideas of instruments they would like to see and hear. So we watched an eight year old girl playing flute, a woman playing an oboe along with a man playing a piano, Buddy Rich and Gene Grupa having a drumming battle, and Jimi Hendrix's The Star Spangled Banner. At snack, we asked the children what instrument they liked the best.. "Guitar!" they responsded. Hudson said, "I like the electric guitar. I also like to watch the flute."

We decorated wreaths for the tree in our classroom and worked on our holiday presents to give to our families. Then it was time for Free Play, Brandon and Max dug in the sandbox while Hudson played drums for us. Before lunch, each child had a turn to jump over the candlestick as we read the nursery rhyme Jack Be Nimble. During lunch, we asked the children what they liked about today. Brandon laughed and said, "It's Tuesday!"

Monday, December 16, 2013

Catch A Rainbow!

When Jacob entered the classroom today, Harry greeted him with a big "hello." Together, they shoveled the snow in the sensory table. Brandon was so excited to be back in school that he ran to his teachers to give them a big hug. After Morning Meeting and snack, we read Corduroy's Christmas by Don Freeman and began to decorate our holiday presents to give to our families. 

Jamie noticed the reflection from the CD as the sun began to shine through the window and showed it to Harry. He and Harry followed the light around the room trying to catch it and were amazed to find a rainbow once the CD stopped spinning.  "A rainbow! A rainbow!" Jamie and Lili said with excitement. "I see it! I see the rainbow!" said Harry. Then it was time for Music Evan who was just as excited by the rainbow as we were. 

At lunch, we asked the children, "What did you see today in the classroom?" 
Jamie: "A rainbow!"
Harry: "Yes but the rainbow went away."
Jenny: "How come?"
Harry: "Because the rainbow was hungry."

We revisited the question "What melts?" by reading Friday's Meaningful Moment. The children used a dropper to squeeze water into a Popsicle tray and we put into the freezer. Hm...we wonder what is going to happen next?

Friday, December 13, 2013

What Melts and Shadows and Reflections

Jamie entered the classroom and greeted his friends, "Good morning Jacob", "Good morning Harry", and "Good morning Lili". He joined Harry at the table to use eyedroppers and green watercolor paint to transform our 'Friendship Tree" into a Holiday Tree. While Lili was shoveling the snow in the sensory table she asked Jenny "Does this melt?" Then she picked up the snow in her hand and said "Look! I made a melt!" At Morning Meeting, Jenny shared this moment with the class and asked the children 'What is melt?" Lili said "It's snow!" and Harry said "snow", Jamie shrugged his shoulders. Next week we are going to do an experiment with water so that the children can discover what "melts".

Next we surprised Nadia with her Holiday present from The Sweet Peas Class. The children painted a flower pot for her when she was not in school last Friday and Jenny asked the children what they love about Nadia. Next, Jenny attached their words to each child's picture. Nadia was so thrilled and happy! Happy Holidays Nadia!

Then Jenny asked Harry to pick out a book to read before snack and he choose Shadows and Reflections by Tana Haban. This led us in to quite a discussion:

Jenny: "What do you see on the cover?'
Jamie: "Black and a hand."
Lili: "A body. It does not have any colors."
Jenny: "Why does it not have any colors?"
"Shadow!" Lili shouted with excitement.
Jamie: "Shadows."

We studied the images on the pages. The children noticed a page with a bear's reflection in water. "What's that?" Lili asked. Jenny explained what a reflection is and the children took turns looking at their own reflections in the mirror. The children commented on what they saw as they examined themselves in the mirror.
Jamie: "My tummy."
Lili: "I see my mouth. My teeth. I have two teeth. Eyelash. I'm a doctor."

Lili then brought over the picture of the Empire State Building from the book Olivia. Perhaps the discussion of shadows and reflections reminded her of a previous discussion we had about this particular page? 

Jenny: 'Lili, why did your show us this picture."
Lili: "Because it's a little dark. A little bit black and light."

After snack, we went on a dragon hunt. When we returned we sang Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer wearing red noses. Jacob and Jamie wanted to jump so we jumped around to some music. Then we had Yoga with Lakshmi. Katya, Lili's mom, helped us make wreaths for our Holiday Tree using green paint mixed with glue, pop popoms, and glitter on white plates. Then she read to the class. What an amazing morning!