Welcome back! We hope everyone had a peace-filled and joyful holiday with family and friends! We are back for the “second half” of this busy school year and have an exciting “line-up” planned with lots more books and fun to explore.
Wrapping It Up
We all had a very joyful Holiday Season in our preschool class, and we are so glad that many of you came to share the joy with us at our Holiday party! Again, a HUGE thanks to Mrs. Hynes for volunteering her time, talents and resources to help us celebrate the special spirit of the season in style! Through our curriculum and all of the accompanying activities, we delved into many of the specific concepts that the December holidays support. We learned a lot about helping and giving, friendships and family, and trying hard in the face of adversity and difficulty.
We will begin our winter fun with lots of animal friends in the stories Ten On a Sled by Kim Norman and The Mitten by Jan Brett. We will emphasize winter weather, clothing for the season, size, number and relational concepts, and action words. Ten On a Sled is brings us some thrill-seeking animal friends, who one-by-one, fall off their fast-moving sled in their own unique ways. Hare “hops” off, Bear “bails,” Wolf “wipes out,” etc. Along with the obvious alliteration and catchy rhyming text, this story introduces many action words and emphasizes number and counting concepts, all within the winter fun of sledding.
The Mitten brings us many of the same animal friends in this delightful tale about a young boy who loses his white mitten in the white snow. Animals of various sizes discover the mitten, decide it is the perfect new home, and crawl inside. Eventually, too many animals are stuffed inside. One of them sneezes and causes a great deal of havoc! Illustrations on the border of each page give the children the opportunity to predict which animal will appear next. The book gives children the chance to discuss size relationships, make inferences, predict outcomes, increase use and understanding of animal attributes.
Some nice ways to reinforce the story at size concepts at home would be to talk about the sizes of everyday objects and relate them to each other. For example, comment on the objects like, “The couch is bigger than the chair.” Make it a game. First you describe two objects, then have them try. They may repeat the same objects you just mentioned, and that is OK. Also, pointing out various positions (i.e., top, middle, bottom, under, beside, etc.) will help to support our vocabulary. Additionally, we will focus more on appropriate clothing for the season. If possible, send your children with various mittens, scarves, earmuffs, hats, etc., that we can share and talk about. Just be sure to label everything with their names!
Along with the concepts of focus through our stories, we will introduce and practice the color white, the shape “octagon,” and we will review the letters “v,” “y,” “k,” “m,” “p,” and “d.” Continue to point out words that begin with or contain these letters and the sounds they make. Discuss things that are white or octagon-shaped as you encounter them this winter (if it chances to snow again, we will be very fortunate!)
Just a Note
***PARENTS…It’s that time of year!!! What time of year you ask??? You know, that coughing, aching, sniffling, sneezing, stuffy head, fever, so you CAN’T rest time of year! Unfortunately we are seeing many, many sick children and teachers. Please, if your child is running even a low grade temperature, do not send him/her to school. Your child must be fever free for 24 hours before returning to school. If your child is vomiting or having diarrhea, he/she may not return to school until 24 hours have passed since their last episode. Please know that we do all we can in our classrooms to keep things sanitary and healthy, but we count on you to help us! Thanks!!!
A Point of Interest
With the new year and a new semester, we will be implementing a new sensory integration program into our daily schedule. As a replacement for our “Smart Moves” time, the “Learn to Move, Move to Learn,” program by Jenny Clark Brack, will incorporate numerous sensorimotor activities throughout the course of the day which tie directly into our theme! Each day will include seven, distinct, theme-based activities to stimulate every sensory system, including vision, hearing, touch, smell, taste, vestibular, and proprioception. The underlying premise of this program finds its support in research that proves that all learning has it’s basis in sensory development, and that many children (for any number of reasons) are not integrating the multiple stimuli encountered in well-organized ways to promote the optimal formation of perceptions, behaviors and learning. Many of the activities are things we are already incorporating into our days, and this new program promises to provide a more efficient framework for ensuring we include stimulation of all sensory routes each day. Please look for more information to come as we familiarize and incorporate this exciting new program!
Upcoming Events and Dates to Remember
- Monday, January 15 – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day – no school
- baby wipes
- disinfecting surface wipes THANK YOU!!!