Kindergarten | Mrs. Prangnell

This Week:

Here is an overview of what we will be learning this week in Kindergarten.  K Plan Mar 1-5.pdf

  • Letter of the Week: W w
  • Popcorn Word: we
  • Tuesday, Mar. 2: Library Book Exchange

February 22nd- 26th

This week in Kindergarten we started a new inquiry about community helpers such as police officers, firefighters, doctors, and other people that work hard for our community. Students showed interest in the different types of jobs each of these community members does to keep others healthy and safe. On Wednesday, we had a virtual meeting with a Calgary Police Officer! He taught us about his job, the tools he uses and helped us answer some of our curiosities about his job. We also got to see the inside of a fire hall through a virtual tour by some very kind firefighters from North Vancouver. In the coming weeks, we will continue to be curious about the different kinds of community helpers around our own community.

We also participated in Pink Shirt Day on Wednesday to show our support for anti-bullying and the promotion of kindness and inclusion. We took part in a virtual read-aloud from an author named Grayson Smith, who read us his book entitled, “There’s a Norseman in the Classroom!” This story taught us about being inclusive to everybody and treating our friends with respect. The students at Rideau Park also received a personalized message from Andrew Phung, a Canadian actor who was born and raised in Calgary. He had some inspiring messages to share with the school community.

Our learning jobs this week focused on developing our math skills such as subitizing numbers, representing numbers on ten frames and problem-solving. The students learned a new math game called BUMP which they really enjoyed playing with a partner. You could even play this math game at home with your child using a few simple materials! 

BUMP Game.pdf

Recyclables: Hang on to your recycled materials! We will be asking families to send in items next week for their child to use as part of our Community Helper Inventions Project. At the end of next week, your child will come home with their invention plan. Their design will include a list of possible materials they may need for building. Items may include cardboard boxes, egg cartons, cereal boxes, paper towel holders, paper plates or straws. We will have items such as chenille stems, yarn, pom-poms, tape, etc. available. Due to COVID-19 protocols, each student will need their own personal materials brought in a bag labelled with their name. Thank you in advance!

February 15-20th

“Children are made readers on the laps of their parents”. – Emilie Buchwald

Reading is a fundamental skill. Kindergarteners need opportunities to play with language and to listen to stories being read aloud. Rhyming teaches early literacy skills like phonemic awareness and word patterns. This week we focussed on words that rhyme with UP. Help your child build their rhyming skills by having them identify if a word rhymes and inviting them to come up with their own rhyming word (it can be a real or nonsense word). Books by Dr. Seuss, nursery rhymes and songs such as “Five Little Monkeys” are great ways to bring in rhyming. Here are some excellent resources from Calgary Reads:

Tips For Parents of Kindergartners.pdf

How To Raise a Reader.pdf

We have been practicing reading the poem/song, “Up The Hill” in class. Your child should be able to independently “read” this poem to you. The first step in reading is reciting familiar and patterned text. Although we don’t know all of the words when we see them, we have memorized the poem and can identify the words up and we. In Kindergarten we are learning that each word represents one word that we say. Have your child point to each word as they say it. 

Up The Hill.pdf

U is for UP. This week we read several beautiful picture books that inspired us to explore things that are up in the sky.

  • Hot Air Balloons – shared our wonderings & ideas about how they stay up in the air then practiced representing numbers on ten frames
  • Clouds – looked closely at the symmetrical cloud art we created and shared what we imaged our cloud looked like (bunnies, butterflies, robot)
  • Planets – created our own ending to the book, “Up, Up and Away” to show what might happen next after the boy let the planet he made go up to space
  • Constellations – used chenille stems and gold beads to replicate star constellations
  • Space - showed two different patterns in the beaded space bracelets we made

On Friday we watched a short clip of the NASA Perseverance Rover. We were excited to watch the rover successfully land on Mars and cheered when it did. This was a great way to close our space inquiry!

February 8-12th

This week we focused on love, compassion, gratitude and kindness. We explored ways we can show kindness and treat each other with love & respect. We thought about what others do for us that makes us feel loved and cared for. Through sorting activities, we categorized items into groups of things we love and things we don’t love (pickles was a highly debated one!).

Together we created a Valentine’s Day Tree. On a heart, we each drew a picture of something that makes us feel loved. We choose a special place on our classroom tree to hang our heart. Our tree is a beautiful representation of ways that we feel loved.

Our moon detectives were excited to learn that Thursday night there will be a new moon. This is when it looks like the moon has disappeared! We learned that this new moon signifies the beginning of the new lunar year and is celebrated by many people around the world. Gong Xi Fa Cai! Happy Lunar New Year.

Please continue to help your child track their moon observations and record the phases on their Moon Journal sheet. We will be doing this for the remainder of the month. At the end of the month, please upload your child's Moon Journal in myBlueprint. This tracking also helps when we are discussing our moon observations each day. Thanks for your support with this! Moon Journal.pdf

Mrs. Lane was away so we did not have library book exchange this week.

If you are looking for a fun way to stay active inside, check out the Heart Month dance with DANCEPL3Y.

“What do you call a small valentine?” A Valen-tiny! Haha. Have a wonderful extra-long weekend together as a family! Stay warm and see you on Tuesday!

February 1st - 5th

R is for Rideau. Wednesday was Winter Walk & Spirit Day. Many of us wore our Rideau gear or our school colours of green & yellow. We talked about what makes our school a special community then we bundled up and went on a community walk in the beautiful snow. We explored walking routes to and from school and walked the pathway on the hill. We learned about pedestrian safety (cross at a crosswalk, hold an adult’s hand when crossing the street, look all ways, make eye contact with the driver & wait for them to stop before going). After our walk we had fun playing and racing in the fresh snow! Going for an outdoor walk is one more way to stay active and improve physical & mental health.

R is for Reading. To celebrate World Read Aloud Day, Chief Superintendent Chris Usih shared a story with us virtually. He read, “When We Are Kind” by Monique Gray Smith. This book has a beautiful message about kindness. We were excited because we have this book in our classroom too!

R is for Rocketship. After Ms. Munroe read us the story, “Roaring Rockets”, we watched a real rocket depart from the earth and launch into space. Together, we counted down from 10 for the big blast off and we were amazed by the fiery colours coming from the engine! As a class, we created a KWL chart. On a blue post-it notes we drew & wrote what we know about rocketships. On an orange post-it note we drew & wrote what we wonder about rocketships. We are reading books, looking at photographs from space and watching NASA & CSA videos to find the answers to our wondering. Click on the link below to find the answer to our wondering, “Do astronauts eat bread in space?”

is for Rocket Adventure. If you built a rocketship where would it take you?

  • “To the beach to collect seashells, build sandcastles and swim in the ocean”
  • “To the United States to visit my Poppi”
  • “To the moon to have a picnic lunch with aliens”
  • “To the Amazon Rainforest”
  • “To the sun to find out how it lights up”
  • “To Mario Land to go in Toad’s house and play with Mario, Luigi and Peach”

R is for Rosie Revere, Engineer. We LOVE this book about a girl who learns to believe in herself and pursue her dreams. We learned the importance of not being afraid to fail and to try again – this is how we learn! Mrs. Prangnell told us this is called “failing forward”. This book taught us a big word, PERSEVERANCE. We learned that many inventions took hundreds of tries and failures before they were successful. If the Wright Brothers had given up and not persevered, they wouldn’t have invented & built the first airplane. Even though it would’ve been easier to quit, they kept trying; they persevered! Using paper and a paper clip we built a Rosie-copter. Our STEM challenge was to change the blades on Rosie’s copter to make it fall to the ground as slowly as possible. We tested our designs, made modifications and tested again. We noticed that the copter reminded us of the helicopter seeds that fall from the maple trees in Autumn. Try this at home: Rosie Revere Engineer Copter.pdf

R is for Roll. We rolled dice to design our own rocket shoes and play other math games. We continue to build our subitizing skills (quickly recognizing the number of dots on the die without counting).

R is for (B)rrrrrrrrrrrr. Our favourite movement video this week was “Brrrrrrrrrrr”. Ask your child to show you the song and how they can cross their elbow to their opposite knee. How many “r” can you count?

Valentine's Day / Friendship Day

This year Valentine's / Friendship Day will look a bit different. Unfortunately due to COVID-19 protocols, students will not be allowed to exchange valentine's cards at school. We will celebrate Valentine's Day, friendship & kindness in ways that keep us safe and healthy. Students are encouraged to dress in red, white or pink on Wednesday, Feb. 10th. Thank you for your understanding.

January 25th- 29th 

M and N are partner sounds. You can help your child reinforce the difference between the “m” sound and the “n” sounds with these reminders. We use our nose to make both sounds. With the letter m, the sound is coming out of our nose and our lips stay closed. We rub our tummies as if we are smelling something delicious as we say “mmmmmm”. With the letter n, the sound is coming out of our nose but our mouth is open and our tongue stays up in front. We shake our head back and forth as if we’re saying “no”.

Every Tuesday, we have our library book exchange. This week as you are reading together, be a word detective and look for the popcorn words we’ve learned so far (go, in, it, on, me, I, a, no).

N is for Night. This week we explored night and what we see in the night sky. We discussed different routines and events that happen during the day or at night. Using night shapes (moons, stars, clouds), we created and extended patterns. Ask your child to tell you about the night patterns they created.

Taking what we know, we created a scene that included images of the night. We used a variety of shapes and colours to create a night cityscape. We practiced our cutting skills ensuring that we were “thumbs up alligator”. After we were finished we went on an art walk to view what our friends had created. This was a great way for us to learn from and appreciate each other’s art.

Vincent Van Gogh painted one of the most famous paintings in history. After reading, “Katie and the Starry Night” by James Mayhew we looked closely at Van Gogh’s “The Starry Night”. We explored the swirling, twirling stars and noticed a crescent moon in the top right corner. Our excitement for this painting has inspired us to make our own starry night version as a collaborative art piece.


Kindergarten Celebration Photos - Thursday, January 28th. 

See attached for further information.  Celebration Photos.pdf

January 18-22nd

We are excited to welcome Lauren Munroe to our classroom community. Ms. Munroe is a student from Mount Royal University. She will be doing her teaching practicum with us until April. Our kindergarten friends are super excited about helping her become a teacher! Ask your child to tell you something they learned about Ms. Munore. 

Moon Theories: We began our week wondering, “How does the moon light up?” We drew detailed pictures to share our theories about what makes the moon glow. We will share these in myBlueprint next week. A few of our theories are:

  • “I think that a fairy comes at night to light up the moon. Her name is Snowflake.”
  • “The energy from the night causes the moon to glow. The moon has a core like the earth.”
  • “I think the moon is glow-in-the-dark. There are fireflies inside the moon that light up the glow-in-the-dark material.”
  • “Fireflies live in the moon. They flew into the moon through an opening. They fly around inside and light it up.”
  • “There is a big flashlight inside the moon. It turns on automatically at night. It turns off in the morning.”
  • “I think that the sun shines the light on the earth and the moon. You need the sun to light up the moon.”

During the week we read books and did moon research. We learned that the moon’s surface reflects light from the sun.

Imagine a Moon: For centuries, people have gazed at the moon and seen images of people and animals. We listened to stories from around the world about the moon. We discovered that in Japan, they tell stories of a rabbit in the moon, or “Jade Rabbit”. The Mi’kmaq people tell the story of a moon man with mud on his face giving the moon its blotchy appearance. In Europe, they imagine a man carrying a bundle of sticks on his back.

We explored the question, “What do you see when you look at the moon?” While listening to “Clair de Lune” by Claude Debussy we looked at images of the moon from space. As we studied pictures of the moon, we started to imagine our own characters. We drew what we saw and are began telling our moon stories. Our moon story titles include: “The Hippo & The Butterfly”, “The Onion Bubble”, “The Magic Pot” and “The Dog Who Loved to Jump”. We can’t wait to share our stories with you once we’ve finished creating them.

Our math challenges this week was inspired by the moon. We explored the many shapes of the moon and looked for patterns with the phases of the moon. We also played a dice game where we climbed a ladder to the moon.

Moon Journal: Your child has a “Moon Journal” paper in their backpack to draw what the moon looks like each night. Please help them track their observations and the phases over the next month. We will be discussing our moon observations each day. Moon Journal.pdf 

Check out our favourite Moon videos from this week:

January 11th- 15th

In Kindergarten we noticed that we don’t see or hear as many animals outside in the winter as we do in the summer. What happens to them? Where do they go? Are they safe? Are they cold in the winter weather? This week we continued our inquiry about animals in winter inspired by our mentor text, “Over and Under the Snow” by Kate Messner.  

Did you know that there is a whole secret kingdom under the snow? There is a network of small open spaces and tunnels between the snowpack and the ground. Many forest animals live under the snow to stay safe and warm in the winter (deer mice, frogs, chipmunks, queen bumblebees). Some forest animals adapt and live over the snow (fox, snowshoe hare, deer, owls).

After researching and reading books together we discovered what animals do to survive the winter.

HIBERNATION: Some animals hibernate. Animals who hibernate stay where they live but sleep for several months during the winter. We learned that:

  • Animals go into a deep sleep, they’re hard to awaken, breathing slows & body temperature drops
  • They hibernate in trees, caves, dens, underground, under a pond, under a log in their shell, in a burrow
  • Some eat large amount of food before to add body fat (bears)
  • Some store food with them and wake up and eat throughout winter (squirrels)
  • Most don’t wake up until spring & are very hungry when they do
  • A black bear can gain up to 30 pounds a week during its pre-hibernation eating binge
  • There are three different kinds of hibernation
  • It’s like an energy-saving mode

Animals that hibernate include: bears, bats, garter snakes, Richardson ground squirrels, frogs, ladybugs, queen bumblebees, snails 

MIGRATION: Some animals migrate. Animals who migrate go somewhere else during the winter. We learned that:

  • Animals go to a warmer place during the winter and return in the spring
  • Some animals go back and forth to the same place, year after year
  • Monarch butterflies travel all the way to Mexico
  • Canadian geese fly together in a “V” formation as they go south
  • Salmon swim upstream to return to the spot they were born to have their babies there
  • Some people travel south for winter to places like Arizona & Mexico

Animals that migrate include: monarch butterflies, Canadian geese, salmon, humpback whales

ADAPTATIONS: Some animals adapt. Animals who adapt stay where they live and have regular sleep cycles. We learned that:

  • White-tailed deer grow a winter coat with longer hair to protect them from the cold
  • Birds, like chickadees, fluff their feathers up to make a thicker insulation layer when the weather is cold. They eat more food and shiver to stay warm. They also stay out of the wind.
  • Voles make haystack nests to keep them warm. They create tunnel systems under the snow to keep warm and hide from predators. 
  • Ruffed grouse grow a fringe along the edge of its toes. This acts like a snowshoe to make it easier to walk on top of deep snow. On cold nights they will fly into a deep snowdrift – this acts like a blanket and protects the grouse from the even colder air. 
  • Snowshoe hares’ fur turns from brown to white to help it camouflage into the snow. Their very large feet make it like they have snowshoes on to help them walk on top of the snow.  
  • Foxes wrap their big, bushy tales around them to stay warm
  • People adapt in the winter by wearing warmer clothes, staying inside their homes and drinking hot chocolate

Animals that adapt include: white-tailed deer, fox, snowshoe hare, some birds, voles

Ask your child to share what they’ve learned about animals in winter.

January 4th-8th

Thank you for an awesome week of at-home learning friends! I love how excited you were to see each other and to share the learning you were doing at home. Thank you families for adjusting your schedules and being great co-teachers. You helped make this a fun and positive experience. I can’t wait to see my Kindergarten friends in person on Monday.

Follow us on Twitter:  @Mrs_Prangnell  @RIDparkschool

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Virtual visit with the Calgary Police Service. It’s official, our Kindergarten class are now police helpers! Thank you for keeping our community safe 👏👏👏@mrs_prangnell #WeAreRideau

Celebrating diversity on #PinkShirtDay2021 with a virtual author visit! Thank you Grayson Smith for sharing your book, ‘There’s a Norseman in the Classroom’ with our Kindergarten class @mrs_prangnell @joyfullylearn #WeAreRideau

Elsie Morden’s motivational words and performance on the Hitmen’s ‘Telus Be Brave’ live stream was a personal and poignant conversation that we couldn’t stop watching. Thank you for sharing your story💕@elsiemorden @WHLHitmen @TELUSBeBrave to #EndBullying @7sRideau #WeAreRideau

Thank you Andrew Phung for your encouraging words and recognition of our students at Rideau Park💗#PinkShirtDay2021 #antibullying @andrewphung @mrs_prangnell @rideaupark1 @3Rideau @blanchardyyc

RT @CalgFoundation: Don't forget to wear your brightest 💕 PINK shirt tomorrow, Wednesday, Feb 24, for #PinkShirtDay! Let's choose kindness and stand against bullying in all forms.