This Week In K/1st

word image 12005 1

Thank you ALL for such a special Teacher Appreciation Week!

BEST BOUQUETS EVER!!!!

We LOVE our new totes (and all that was in them) and LUNCH was not only delicious, but soooo relaxing; what a wonderful treat!

THANK YOU!!!

What’s Above Us this week…

This week the Alphas learned more about our star. Because of you awesome parents out there – they already knew A LOT!

word image 12005 2

Alphas were shocked to learn that the sun contains 99% of the matter in our solar system. This led to a discussion on matter (we reviewed the 3 states of matter from our study of water and added a new one – plasma!) and learned about mass as well.

word image 12005 3
word image 12005 4

We learned that, just like our planet, the sun has an equator. We demonstrated how many Earths would fit across the sun’s equator by placing a 9’ line of masking tape on the red rug (representing the sun’s equator) and adding 1” earth stickers across. We worked on this project during transition times throughout the week and we still haven’t made it across! I believe we’re at ~91.

word image 12005 5
word image 12005 6

We learned about the types of energy that come from the sun: infrared, visible light and ultraviolet. Alphas were reminded of the importance of wearing sunscreen to protect our skin from the ultraviolet rays. And, we made sunscreen.

word image 12005 7
word image 12005 8

Coconut oil only has an SPF of 7 (at max), but we didn’t want our Alphas handling strong chemicals. We tested our sunscreen by placing a sunscreened handprint on a piece of black construction paper and setting it outside for a few hours. Even though the sun was not visible on this day, we found that it still managed to bleach out our black paper to a grayish tone – except for where we had applied the sunscreen!

word image 12005 10

Next we set off on an art project! We cut suns out of cardstock and applied gobs of red, yellow and orange paint. We laid a plastic sheet over it and went to town pounding, pressing and smearing the paint all around.

word image 12005 11
word image 12005 12
word image 12005 13

The results were incredible!

word image 12005 15

Our next project was inspired by a mission to bring light to people in the Philippines who live where they lack access to – or cannot afford – electricity. You can learn more about the Liter of Light cause here.

word image 12005 16

We began with cardboard boxes and traced water bottles on the side that we wanted the top of our box to be. Next, we drew a viewbox. Finally, we painted!

word image 12005 18
word image 12005 19

After our paint dried we filled water bottles and dyed the water different colors.

word image 12005 20
word image 12005 21

We stuck them into the holes on the top of our box and, voila! When we peeked through our viewholes we saw cool patterns of light – even colors – projected on the inside of the box. Similarly to rainbows, water makes light slow down and bend in all directions. For this reason, Alphas were instructed to be sure to apply sunscreen whenever they visit the pool.

word image 12005 22

We even found time to work on our rocket designs this week!

word image 12005 23
word image 12005 24
word image 12005 25

The table teams worked together beautifully and made their Alpha teachers very proud.

word image 12005 26
word image 12005 27
word image 12005 28
word image 12005 29
word image 12005 30
word image 12005 31

This week in Math…

What’s going on in Ms. Kim’s Group

word image 12005 63

Playing “Guess my Number!”

We made 10 bars and unit cubes. “How many can our Alpha class make?”

word image 12005 64
word image 12005 65
word image 12005 66
word image 12005 67
word image 12005 68
word image 12005 69
word image 12005 70

“2 groups of 100 is 200…4 groups of 10’s is 40…and 9 unit cubes!”

word image 12005 71

249!

What’s going on in Ms. Andrea’s Group

We began the week by connecting two of our major units of study: coins and time. We saw that that are 4 quarters in both, an hour and a dollar. Next, we set nickels beside 5-minute increments on an analog clock.

word image 12005 72
word image 12005 73

We spent (pun intended) lots of time counting coins this week! The Alphas are catching on to the concept nicely!

word image 12005 74
word image 12005 75

On Wednesday we all went shopping! Each Alpha was given two quarters and asked to select an item from our store to buy. We all took turns being cashiers – writing receipts and giving change when necessary.

word image 12005 76

We finished off the week – as we do – by practicing solving story problems and working on our fact fluency. We played a new game called Race to 100 that proved very challenging to most. Fortunately, the challenge lay in the rules and not in solving the addition number sentences!

This week in Language Arts..

What’s going on in Ms. Andrea’s Group

Photo fail! Soo sorry – we were so busy working on finishing up our books, and completing the final week of guided reading groups along with our structured phonics curricula – that I missed any chance to pull out my phone and “snap” a photo! This will be a priority for next week as we focus on completing our author study with the McDuff series (focusing on the beginning/middle/end of stories and character traits) and sharing the rest of our fabulous books.

What’s going on in Ms. Kim’s Group

This week we talked about how author’s take highly emotional events in their lives and then turn them into fictional stories. We talked about times people hurt our feelings or times we were really scared, then read the story The Red Balloon about a lonely boy who made a friend out of a balloon.

word image 12005 78

Just when things were as bad as they could get, something wonderful, amazing, and magical happens that rescues the boy. Alphas knew this was impossible, but it was wonderful anyway. We wanted to take real-life emotions and and create characters whose problems are solved in a fantastical way.

word image 12005 79

Inspired writers!

In Other News…

At the end of the year we find that we are stronger and braver to share our ideas and opinions and we are so proud of how far we’ve grown this year. These new skills can also mean we face lots of different ideas and opinions that don’t look like ours and that creates conflict. In order to continue building our community, we have to figure out a way to get through conflict. It can be really hard to be respectful when you get frustrated and sometimes people get so frustrated that they invade our personal space. We talked about how we can take care of our personal space and ways to remind others to respect it. WE talked and TALKED! Our class had so much to say and so many ideas, we had a little snack-time chat about experiences we’ve had when we felt disrespected or someone got into our personal space.

word image 12005 81
word image 12005 82

Travel Buddies!

word image 12005 83
word image 12005 84
word image 12005 85
word image 12005 86
word image 12005 87
word image 12005 88

This week in Monday Lab…

This week we had a tough challenge to build a hollow sphere. Alphas came up with some inventive strategies using a mold, and special folds, and multiple strips of paper.

word image 12005 89
word image 12005 90
word image 12005 91
word image 12005 92

In honor of the moon, we made moon-mochi!

word image 12005 93
word image 12005 94
word image 12005 95
word image 12005 97

We learned how a famous, self-taught artist, names Henri Rousseau used perspective in order to give depth to his jungle paintings.

word image 12005 98
word image 12005 99