Welcome to the second week of Kindergarten! If your child was tuckered out on Thursday- they are in the majority. Plenty of sleep will help us tackle all the great learning we have in store.
Our theme this week is Sharing. Our primary read aloud will be Share, Big Bear, Share- a delightful book that I discovered one summer on the shelves of the local library. It is about a bear who misunderstands what others are saying, but by the end he learns to pay attention to others and remembers to share with his friends.
Last week, we got to know our first Tribble- Mutual Respect. He helps us remember to treat others the way we want to be treated and to be kind. This week, we will meet the next Tribble- Attentive Listening. The tale of Howard B. Wigglebottom Learns to Listen will kick off our discussion of what it means to be an attentive listener.
One of our focuses at the beginning of the year is developing and firming up our Alphabet Knowledge. We have some groovy “animal friends” that help us learn the sounds and names of our letters. (Zoo Phonics) Each animal has a name and motion that help us solidify the sounds and letter names. After we’ve worked with them a bit, they will be added to your child’s binder. Singing and acting out their song is a great “reading homework” activity.
Word awareness is another important skill we are working on developing. This skill is important to reading and writing. When your child is reading their poems and books, it is important that they are noticing that words have spaces between them. Encourage them to point to or “poke” at each word as they reread. When we write sentences we plan them out across our fingers.
In math, our focus is on noticing attributes, making comparisons, and describing what we notice. This unit lends itself to lots of real world application. Some important terms are same, similar, and different. Similar is where there real deep thinking magic occurs because we are noticing both what is the same and what is different at the same time. For example, a stuffed toy bear and a plastic counting bear are similar because they are both bears that can be played with but they differ in size and texture. We will also be exploring how things “go together” by use such as a collar, leash, and food bowl are all used to take care of a pet dog. On Wednesday, we will be exploring interesting textures- smooth, bumpy, rough, and so on. Students are invited to bring an item from home that has an interesting texture. We will use these items during our math lesson that day. This object should easily fit in their backpack. IT SHOULD NOT BE AN ITEM OF EITHER SENTIMENTAL OR MONETARY VALUE. Unfortunate things can happen and I can not take responsibility for each item’s safety. Items need to be able to stand up to being handled by many Kindergarteners’ hands. Any student that does not bring an item will still be able to complete the activity with a school item- it just won’t quite be as much fun.
Students will begin coloring on their Community Calendars to share a trait they used that day with you. Our behavior chart may be different from those you have seen used in the past. All of the colors are positive and help us emphasize different traits we are hoping to develop and strengthen while in Kindergarten.
If you are looking for some extra reading material, I came across this great article about mindset: https://www.nwea.org/blog/2017/starting-school-year-off-mindset-lesson-three-year-old/ It’s worth the quick read as it has a valuable message for us as parents.
Reading: 10 minutes a night
Reading can include reading stories, the poems in the binder, and working on alphabet sounds and letter names.
Math: 10 minutes a night
Recommended IXL objectives for this week are Q skills 1-7
I have decided to assign our optional objectives in more of a weekly chunk than a day by day assignment. This should allow you to let your child’s specific needs guide their practice within a skill area. Please note that fluency (answering with speed and ease) is the goal for mastering these foundational math skills. We want your child to have a strong foundation and feel confidence in their ability to use their math skills. Revisiting objectives to increase fluency is essential for our Kindergarteners.
Similar skills can be practiced and strengthened with real world objects. Dishes, clothes, toys, art materials, and the like all lend themselves to discussions about attributes, similarities, and differences. Basic counting skills can also be reinforced when items that are sorted are counted and compared.
Please make sure your child got to decorate their binder cover page as well.