Mrs. Barnes’ Class
Week of December 20-24, 2014
The past few weeks in preschool our theme has been Construction Zone. The students have been learning that “tools” can mean more than hammers, screw drivers, and wrenches. We discussed how a fork is a tool when we eat, a shovel is a tool used to move sand from one place to another, and pencils are tools that help us write. Ask your child what the word “construct” means, most of the students will tell you that we build or make something.
In math the students used tape measures to measure pieces of wood, the desks, and several other items in the classroom. We also discussed different lengths, such as shorter or longer when we cut pieces of wood to build things. There was a memory game that involved matching small construction equipment with large construction equipment which involved using magnifying glasses. The cards with the small pictures were so tiny you couldn’t see them with your bare eye. Another center consisted of counting out erasers to match the number of construction objects on a card and then identifying the numeral that corresponded. (compares and measures, classification skills, counting, connecting numerals with their quantities, number recognition, one to one correspondence).
Some of our science activities included the following: Use of magnifying glasses for memory game in order to magnify an image, use of different types of sand paper to smooth out pieces of wood, and the different movements that construction vehicles make such as pulling, pushing, scooping, etc. (uses and understands tools, knowledge of physical properties of objects and materials, scientific inquiry skills).
The dramatic play area was a HUGE hit the past few weeks! We had it set up as a hardware store. I brought in some actual tools and items that you would buy at a hardware store and put price tags on them. The students were able to take turns role playing as a cashier or a customer in the store. It was fun hearing them ask how much each item cost when they saw the price tags J (cooperative play, establish positive relationships, interaction with peers, problem solving, balance needs and rights of self and others, use language to express thoughts and needs).
The first week of our sensory table contained rice with different types of construction tools such as shovels, construction vehicles, and people. The students were able to scoop rice with shovels, spoons, or trucks and then transport it to another part of the table. Some of them were burying items and then using the construction vehicles and shovels to unbury the items. The next week we had different lengths, sizes, and shapes of wood with sand paper in the table. The students were able to sand the wood to make it smooth and experience the different textures that could be created. This past week we had water in the sand table with some vehicles, shapes, numbers, and letters. (exploration, textures).
Our listening center had activity cards that teach the letter of the week. I am using a new concept for my listening center that connects the recognition of the letter but also helps them work on the sound of each letter. This is an interactive center that allows the students to listen to directions and then choose an appropriate response using headphones and a tape. So far it seems to be working well. Some of the students haven’t connected with letter sounds so this is a little bit of a challenge for them. Please continue to work with your child at home on letter recognition and sounds. I have seen a big improvement with many students!
A special “Thank You” to all the parents for being so flexible with our crazy schedule due to the weather changes. A few of you have emailed me with questions regarding delays and closings. The handbook states that information will be provided to channel 8 and 13. I believe channel 8 is listed as Des Moines St. Joseph, and channel 13 will be listed as St. Joseph. Please continue to watch KCCI and WHO for the most recent delays and closings. I would also like to mention how much I appreciate your willingness to be prompt during student pick up times and would like to give you a reminder of how our schedule works in the preschool room. At the end of the day I like to bring the students together as a large group and discuss what we have learned for the day and remind them about important notes or activities coming up. I also feel that this time gives us a sense of community. Morning dismissal is 11:15 AM and afternoon dismissal is 3:15 PM, so I would like to ask that you please not show up earlier than these times when picking students up for the day.
January 31st: Grandparents Day
February 12th: 3-year old Valentine Party
February 14th: 4-year old Valentine Parties
February 18th: Parent Teacher Conferences
February 20th: Parent Teacher Conferences
Preschool Sign-up mtg (2014-2015 year)
February 21st: No Preschool
February 25th: Preschool Field Trip