Daily Schedule

Monday, October 16, 2017

Friday, October 13, 2017

Week in Review - October 9 - 13

                                             This information is also found in Walter's weekly email:

This was a week of starting new projects and wrapping up some old ones. In math class, we learned a new game called Close to 100. We are really honing our place value skills, as well as stretching our logic brain and math sense. The Singapore Math Books keep us humming along at our own pace and individual levels. 

Of course, our big excitement this week was that we started our first round of EBs. The children were thrilled to learn that they got their first choices, and spent two hours this week learning and exploring topics ranging from stars to photography to engineering to mazes. 

Wednesday brought rain, so we broke out our umbrellas for the first time and went on an umbrella walk. We also went on our first Science/Nature hike with naturalist Kelsey on Friday afternoon. So many firsts!

Each month our class does an Environmental Super Hero Project, and October's project is vermicomposting. On Friday morning, the students helped prepare the worm bed, and received 2000 or so red wigglers compost worms. This is the beginning of a year-long composting project.

We wrapped up our "I Am" poem projects, and finished our word clouds. Both of these mini-projects are part of our much larger identity project. Another identity project happened in the Science Lab on Wednesday. Shan has the children learning about DNA and genetics, and we did a wonderful hands-on experiment where we extracted the DNA from strawberries! Shan even gave each student a little vial necklace so they could wear a bit of the strawberry DNA home at the end of the day. 

Students are in the midst of reading all they can at home for Read-to-Feed, and excitedly report to me each day. This service project will continue until the end of October. Of course, we continue working each week on Memory Pages, Poetry Anthologies, and Special Readers. This week, we heard from two brand new special readers - Nels and Miles. They did an absolutely FANTASTIC job for their first time out, and had a very loving and appreciative audience. 

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Rainy Days at Summers-Knoll

Rain does NOT spoil our parade at Summers-Knoll! I am happy to say that we go outside every day, rain or shine. Excluding days when it is dangerous to be outside (lightning storm, too cold with wind chill, etc.), we like to bundle the kids up and enjoy what the day brings.

There are so many great things to do outside, even on wet days. Children learn about nature - it is a whole new world out there! The earth changes color, the leaves have a squishy texture - it even smells different. Rain provides an excellent opportunity to explore science and the natural world. Did you know that bees cannot fly in the rain? 

Here are some things that we've done with children at school:

Today we took a wet, rainy walk - umbrellas and friends from the other 1st and 2nd grade make it even more fun.

We've jumped in the puddles - Kids love to splash with their rubber boots.

We've let pots fill up with rain water and floated things in it. 

We've made all sorts of mud stews, adding leaves, twigs and other bits of nature for flavor. Lots of imagination possibilities!

Please make sure your child has appropriate clothing for rainy days - a rain coat with hood and great boots are a must. Thank you!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Close to 100 - A Math Game to Play at Home

This is a great game for children doing 2nd and 3rd grade level math. It is a fun way to practice double digit addition, using logic and strategy, and it has a special emphasis on place value. It is also a good follow-up to some of the other games and activities we've done, like making number pairs to 100. It's called Close to 100, and - just like the name implies - your goal is to get as close to 100 as possible. You can see the directions HERE. All you need is a deck of cards with 10s and face cards removed. We have zeros in our special decks, which add to the fun, and I also made wild cards, which can be used for any number. Many children can now articulate that to make EXACTLY 100 you need to have two numbers that make 10 in the ones place, and 9 in the tens place (and tell you why). Pretty impressive! I love to hear them explain their mathematical thinking, and they are so kind with their partners.

Please let me know if you play this with your child - I love to imagine our little mathematicians having fun with math at home.