I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday break! While the break seemed to go by so quickly, we were all excited to start back to play in the classroom. In math, we began our fourth unit of the school year focused on measurement and counting. We began the unit talking about shoes. On Thursday, we gathered around on the math carpet and I asked each child to take off one shoe and put it in the center. The children were both shocked and intrigued! They thought this was hysterical! We began to talk about how you decide what shoe size to wear and what it means to measure a shoe. We tried putting the shoes in order from smallest to biggest, but we quickly found this to be difficult without a measuring tool. Then we moved into the next part of math workshops and took all the shoes to tables. We used a variety of nonstandard units of measure to determine the shoe lengths. Some children tried measuring the height, while others did not match up one end of the measuring tool to the edge of the shoe to get an accurate measurement. I was able to walk around and take notes on each child’s current level of understanding. These observations and notes will help dictate where our math lesson goes.

On Friday, we extended on our measurement unit by tracing each others shoes. We cut them out and decorated them. These shoe outlines will be used in many measurement units to come. BONUS: Have your child trace the shoes of each member in your family. Label the shoes with each persons name. Your child can cut out the shoes. Then turn them in with Friday’s homework folder. I can’t wait to see the variety of shoe sizes that come in to the classroom.

We began our Aquarium Thematic lesson this week. We listened to the story/song titled “I’m a Manatee” and discussed various creatures that live in the water. We are discussing both salt water and fresh water animals. After compiling a list of animals, each student was given a small piece of construction paper to draw an animal and cut it out. We taped these shapes to our large fish bowls (made from poster board). Then the children took turns spraying blue water color paint onto the poster. When the paint dried, we took off our shapes, which left a nice white outline on the fishbowl. We will continue to add to our large fish bowl cut outs that are hanging up in the classroom.

KEEP IN MIND: We go outside daily. Please bring clothes appropriate for the weather. While snow is still on the ground, please send your child with snow pants, boots, mittens, and hats.

SCHOOL CLOSED: Martin Luther King Jr. Day, January 21, 2013
Regular classes will be closed January 31 and February 1 for parent/teacher conferences. Sign up sheets will be available soon.