K/1st: Week of Aug 21

What’s Up with Alphas!

Welcome to our NEWSLETTER!

Alphas hit the ground running!

We started getting to know each other through games and activities where we had to collaborate, come to consensus, and share resources. We had thoughtful conversations regarding building the best class ever by agreeing to:

  • respect each other’s bodies, feelings, and things
  • listen attentively to each other
  • not put people down but lift them up
  • the right to pass

We ALSO started learning about our bodies, starting with our BRAINS! We learned where it lives, what it is made of, and how heavy it is. We also talked about the part of our brain that keeps us alive and protects us by giving us reflexes: the medulla oblongata!

AND, on top of all THAT we had a FIRST in Alpha: we celebrated a birthday the first full week of school!

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Filling our backpacks for a 3 month journey…Uh-oh! Change of plans: you can only take 3 things in a shared team-backpack! What will you take/what can you share?!

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Working together to build a tower out of paper, and comparing our efforts!

Alphas making uppercase letters with STICKS!

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Helping each other make lowercase letters with beans…

Alphas working on their self portraits!

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Passing around a 3D model of an infant’s brain…

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An adult brain weighs 3 lbs….same as all of our table team supplies or a load of books!

…shading in the medulla oblongata!

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Pelting each other with cotton balls to watch how our medulla oblongatas protect our eyes by making us blink!

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Alphas shared some lovely appreciations for their new teacher!

Happy Birthday Ms. Alexa!

This week in Math…

Ms. Kim’s Group…

This quarter we are training our brains to look for patterns, because it helps us solve problems when we can rely on past strategies to help us with new dilemmas! We talked about attributes that make things similar and different. We sorted our shoes and OURSELVES and we practiced writing HUGE numbers with our magic pointer fingers (which later became magic light saber markers, thanks to Gabriel’s suggestion).

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Making AB patterns…

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Alphas sorted by size…

Ms. Alexa’s Group…

We’ve begun our unit on place value. We learned that we can easily count a large group of items by breaking the group into smaller groups of ten. Then, when we get distracted, we won’t lose count! We sorted glass beads into groups of tens and learned that we call the “leftovers” units, or ones. We practiced counting by tens, using tens and ones blocks to build numbers (and even some hundred blocks!) and we started comparing numbers to see which is larger.

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Making groups of ten to count objects

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Playing a place value matching game

This week in Language Arts…

Ms. Alexa’s Group…

The focus this week was on names. We discussed why we have names and we practiced writing our names with a capital first letter followed by lowercase letters. We counted the letters in our names to see how many we have and we sorted the alphabet to find our names’ letters. We looked closely at the letters to see what kinds of lines we see in the alphabet and then we practiced tracing those lines. We pretended that our pencils were bikes riding on the straight lines, climbers going over the jagged, mountain-top lines and boats sailing on the wavy ocean lines. We also began to talk about rhyming words and we explored books. We talked about authors and illustrators and how they work together to create books. We compared lots of illustrations to see the different techniques illustrators use.

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Comparing illustrations Practicing Handwriting

Ms. Kim’s Group…

This week Alphas had the taster-plate trying a little bit of EVERYTHING we will do in our Language Arts class: we read and discussed elements of a story, we met our “computers” and reviewed initial, medial, and final ending sounds in words, we went to the handwriting gym to practice our graphomotor skills, we read together and alone, and we practiced how we will rotate through the room when we do language arts centers… WHEW!

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Documenting the outside traits of a main character…

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Pincer-grasp work-out in action with the poking equipment!

“From the top…around, and over….”