Students were very busy this month with a variety of experiences in art and science! We were very excited to receive 5 tiny caterpillars early in the month. The students observed them quickly grow in length, spin a chrysalis, and finally emerge as beautiful butterflies! After sharing our best wishes for the butterflies, we released them into the warm sunshine and watched them fly away. The students were fascinated to learn that butterflies taste with their feet and smell with their antennae. They carefully observed the butterflies in each stage of development and drew them in their visual journals. Finally, they created 3d butterfly life cycles out of plasticine!
During the month, students planted and cared for a variety of seeds. After listening to the story of “Jack and the Beanstalk”, they were excited to grow their own beanstalks. Students measured their beanstalks’ height with cubes, and found objects in the classroom that were shorter or taller than their beanstalks.
We were thrilled to participate in Evergreen Theatre this past month, with plays about honeybees and butterflies. The students did an amazing job learning their lines and actions, and loved dressing up in their costumes and performing.
We were very fortunate to have Ms. Leah Donald from Art Felt Studio and several parent volunteers assist the students in a wet-felting project. After learning about the process of turning fleece from sheep into wool, the students spent the morning creating a Four Seasons Tree wall hanging. What a beautiful way to show case their learning of seasonal changes. This project paired wonderfully with the story, “This is How I Know”, a First Nations’ perspective on knowing the seasons. Students drew their own seasonal tree in their journals to illustrate how they know the seasons!
Kindergarteners have been excited to welcome all of the seasonal changes that spring has to offer! We have utilized a variety of mediums to design colourful art related to stories, music and our changing environment. Cherry blossoms were represented creatively using bubble wrap and paint! Kindergarteners also worked together with grade 4 buddies to create paper sunflowers for our Nellie Peace Wall and both groups followed up by planting sunflower seeds for our “Kindergarden” near the purple doors. As we nurture and watch our flowers grow indoors, they will help us to learn about the life cycle of plants and measurement. We look forward to transferring our sunflowers to the “Kindergarden” planters in June for the community to enjoy! Students are excited for the arrival of our butterfly kits next week and look forward to experiencing the life cycle of butterflies in our classrooms. This will provide a great opportunity for hands-on learning.
The past few weeks we’ve been exploring shapes in the world around us. The students created 2d shapes in their visual journals with yarn just like the spider in “Walter’s Wonderful Web”. They also learned about 3d shapes and identified cubes, cones and prisms in our classroom. We collected recycled materials and built our own “up-cycled” 3d structures.
In literacy, the students continued learning letters and sounds, and are using this knowledge to solve mystery words and use “kid writing” in their journals.
The students enjoyed creating their own “breathing buddies” out of giant pom-poms and googly eyes. We practised using our buddies to breathe deeply to calm ourselves down. We’re looking forward to meeting our grade 4 buddies later this week!
Kindergarteners have built upon their understanding of different Alberta animals by exploring the freshly fallen snow for evidence of tracks. We have searched forested areas at our school and South Glenmore Park for evidence of wild animals. Students utilized their understanding of animal homes to identify locations where footprints may be found, such as under trees. We also used our knowledge of different types of tracks to predict which species may have created them. Students observed a variety of animals in their natural environments during our time outdoors.
With Valentine's Day approaching, kindergarteners have explored concepts of friendship and giving. We read a variety stories on the topics of friendship and belonging. Students reflected on how to be a good friend through journaling and classroom role play. We read The Giving Tree and discussed ways in which we can give to others and how giving makes us feel. Kindergarteners are adding art and crafts to a classroom “giving tree” to offer one another kindness and emotional support.
In preparation for next week, kindergarteners created beautifully woven, patterned valentine bags. We also constructed 3D “love trees” using handprints, hearts and personal messages.
During the month of January, kindergarten students read Jan Brett’s classic story, “The Mitten”. They enjoyed acting out the story with animals in the drama centre and sequencing pictures to retell the story. We explored the concept of capacity by determining how many cubes our mittens could hold. We also compared the capacity of a variety of containers by filling them with paper “snowballs” and counting the number of snowballs each one held. Students had fun experimenting with capacity at the sand table using funnels, nesting cups and measuring spoons. We continued to investigate measurement using cubes to measure the length and width of our mittens – and even each other. Finally, we read different versions of The Mitten to compare how the stories were similar and how they differed.
During the end of the month, we began looking for signs of animal activity during the winter. We read "Over and Under the Snow" to learn which animals live above the snow and which live beneath. In their journals, students drew and labelled animals that live over and under the snow. We looked closely at animal tracks to identify the animals that made them, and used stamps and paint to create our own animal tracks.We’re hoping for a fresh snowfall next week so that we can search for animal tacks in our field!
Kindergarteners have continued to explore and build upon their understanding of seasonal changes within our environment. We have focused on learning about, and creating, snowflakes in a variety of artistic ways. Students have used geo-boards, beaded pipe cleaners and paint. Kindergarteners also utilized their spatial reasoning and measurement skills to create patterned trees using sequins and card stock. In literacy, students depicted their snowy experiences through pictures and experimenting with letter sounds, words and sentence-writing. Kindergarteners are encouraged to take positive risks by adding words to their drawings using a variety of strategies explored in class. We also reflected on the importance of a caring heart and kindness towards those in need while reading Red Parka Mary. Students created a prediction for this story's ending and learned to use a pictorial checklist to ensure their work contained relevant characters and story elements. Kindergarteners are learning to subitize, print numerals and represent numbers in many ways, such as through tallies, ten frames, dice, pictures and number lines.
This week in kindergarten we looked at different ways animals prepare for winter (such as deer growing thicker fur, squirrels gathering nuts, rabbits changing from brown to white, geese migrating and bears preparing to hibernate). The students illustrated these changes in their journals. Last week the students noticed fall leaves glistening in the sunlight and were very excited with this, so this week we created our own frosted leaves. The students drew a variety of leaf shapes on card stock, painted them with a main colour, added veins with a second colour and added the magic touch: glitter!
Kindergarteners have been exploring seeds in a variety of ways. We have read books about the ways in which seeds travel in nature, acted out a seed’s journey, searched for seeds in our snacks and outdoors through a nature scavenger hunt. Students also enjoyed sketching seeds and sorting foods with seeds and no seeds. Some kindergarteners explored art by reading The Dot and following up with a cooperative painting activity, while others completed a “tape resist” painting, using the first initial of their names to design a personalized visual journal cover. Both classes continued to explore seasonal changes through stories and related mathematical problem-solving activities. We enjoyed drawing pictures and labelling them with numbers to show our understanding of word problems. Students enjoyed exploring Alberta wilderness and seasonal changes through new activity centres. We cannot wait to learn more about how animals prepare for winter!
November 10, 2021
During the past 2 weeks, kindergarten students have been learning about Remembrance Day. We explored the meaning of Remembrance Day through the story “A Poppy is to Remember”. In preparation for our Assembly, the students learned the words and sign language for O’Canada as well as the poem “In Flanders Field”. The students created poppies which they helped assemble into a wreath. Next, we focused on the concept of Peace. We read several books such as “Peace is an Offering” and “What does Peace Feel Like?”. The students made personal connections by describing what peace means to them and drew their ideas in their journals. We were so proud of our wreath bearers and our students’ participation in our Remembrance Day Assembly and were very happy that so many parents were able to attend!
October 29, 2021
Students have enjoyed a week of pumpkin exploration leading up to Halloween! We practiced reciting, acting out and creating puppet shows for the poem, Five Little Pumpkins. A related craft project helped us to build fine motor skills while practicing labelling pumpkins with numerals 1-5 and ordering from largest to smallest. Kindergarteners also explored pumpkins through a beautiful oil pastel project and construction paper craft great for building fine motor skill. Each classroom investigated its own pumpkin to estimate and measure the height, width and circumference using unifix cubes and string. We then compared the measurements to other objects to determine whether it was shorter or taller, etc. Students used juicy words to describe some of the five senses involved in pumpkin carving and observation. Kindergarteners also enjoyed utilizing their knowledge of shapes to design jack-lanterns on mini-whiteboards. We explored the many feelings that can be demonstrated through our faces. The work of feelings and thoughts was an important theme for two special guests, occupational therapist Ms. N and speech-language pathologist Mrs. G, who began “We Thinkers” lessons with both classes to help us understand the relationship between thoughts, emotions and actions. Have a Happy Halloween!
October 21, 2021
Kindergarteners have continued to explore the many shapes included in their natural and non-natural environments. We have enjoyed becoming “shape detectives” by collecting and photographing a variety of natural objects within our treed area. How many different shapes can your child identify when on a community walk or drive? Students also reflected on their understanding of shapes by brainstorming and sketching environmental objects resembling squares and circles. We continued to build upon our fine motor skills and our ability to differentiate between shapes by creating repeating shape patterns.
Students practiced printing and blending the letters we have learned to create rhyming words in the “-at” family, such as pat and sat.
Kindergarteners also enjoyed exploring new math centres focused on developing and building our numeral recognition and counting skills through dice, drawings and cooperative games. We practiced our shape-drawing skills through games of x's and o's (and triangles and squares).
October 15, 2021
This week in math we continued to focus on shapes. One classroom read the story, “The Shape of Things” and began identifying shapes in the world around them, including signs in our community. They also created pictures out of shapes on geoboards and on the light table. Another classroom looked closely at shapes in nature and used watercolour pencils to draw fall leaves. Both classes continued to develop fine motor skills by copying, colouring and cutting shapes.
In Literacy, kindergarten students learned the name, sound and formation of the letter P. They enjoyed sorting a variety of objects by their initial sound and finding all the P’s in the Pumpkin Poem. The students drew pictures of their families at Thanksgiving and began to add words like “Mom”, “Dad” and their names to their drawings.
We are beginning to explore a Growth Mindset through books such as “Ish” and “Not Yet”. These books encourage students to create freely without fear of perfection and to persevere in difficult or challenging tasks.
October 7, 2021
This week, kindergarten students explored concepts of gratitude and friendship through stories including "The Thankful Book" and "Autumn's First Leaf." We reflected on our personal connections by participating in sharing circles and creating colourful drawings. Kindergarteners practised rhyming and poetry, with a focus on Thanksgiving and the letter T. We continued to build upon our fine motor skills by printing, beading, cutting and tracing. Kindergarteners learned how to create artwork using a variety of fall leaves during a leaf rubbing activity. Students used their sense of touch and descriptive words to identify differences between the front and back of leaves. We learned about the veins of leaves and how they act as a straw to distribute water. Kindergarteners enjoy having their very own garden near the purple doors and are learning how to care for the peppermint plants by providing them with water.
October 1, 2021
This past week the kindergarten students participated in a variety of activities related to Truth and Reconciliation. We began by reading “The Orange Shirt Story”. The students discussed things that we have, but were not allowed in residential schools, such as living with your family, speaking your own language and wearing your own clothes. As a follow up, we coloured orange shirts and created orange heart flowers to remember that every child matters! Later in the week Ms. Tami read “The Sharing Circle” to our classes. In this story, a boy carried dried herbs in his pocket to remember his home and his culture wherever he went. The students participated in a sharing circle in which they told us what they would carry with them to remember their home. We explored mint using our senses and planted some mint in the garden. We finished the week by reading “My Heart is Filled with Happiness” and reflecting on everything in our life that fills us with joy!
Sept. 23, 2021
Kindergarteners have enjoyed exploring seasonal changes and collecting natural artifacts for patterning and creating collages. We celebrated the beginning of fall by reading Leaf Man and going on a nature hunt. Students created pictures of animals and people using leaves, twigs and pinecones. Kindergarteners also enjoyed sketching fall self-portraits. Last week, we participated in the Terry Fox Run and learned about Terry’s perseverance in the face of adversity. Kindergarteners began alphabet work with a focus on the letter S. We practiced isolating the “S” sound in order to identify words beginning with this letter. Students also worked on building their fine motor skills through printing. We have been reflecting on our day through sharing circles and are building confidence in verbalizing our feelings and preferences.
Sept. 10, 2021
We’re so happy to welcome our kindergarten students to school! During the past two weeks the students have been learning classroom routines and making new friends. We’ve been working on creating patterns in art and math, outdoors and using sound and movement. Kindergarteners have been learning how to be good classroom citizens, introduce themselves and be kind to one another. They have started recognizing and printing their names. The students enjoyed creating name banners using bean patterns. Beginning next week, our students will take turns bringing a special kindergarten backpack home as we begin to explore what makes us unique.