Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Preschool Graduation Day!

Pre-School Graduation Day!  (Pictures Coming)

This morning students decorated their own graduation caps!  Then they drew a picture of themselves at the end of the year (to go in the back of their books as a contrast to the picture they drew of themselves at the Preschool Openhouse at the beginning of the year. 

I loved Ethan's drawing (but didn't get a picture of it) because he drew his Kindergarten school, a tree, and his name!  Can you tell who is excited to be entering Kindergarten!?

Eleanor came in with a great drawing of an ant, alligator, and apple, M's , Ws, and wiggly worms.  She worked hard on her name in rainbow letters--again, I was sad to have not gotten a picture.

After these art activities, some children played Linkin Blocks, some watched an ABC  clip, and some worked with Miss Emily or myself in finishing the Z page (gluing it to a colored paper and practicing the sound).

We practiced singing most of our songs for our program: I Can Sing a Rainbow, Popcorn Popping, and ABC Sounds (Waterford Inst.).

We had a quick pretzel sticks snack and a fun recess break (while Emily and Julie set up chairs and refreshments).

Memories, Memories!
*Chester Raccoon and the Kissing Hand
*Wheels on the Bus
*Zero My Hero and Letter A
*Applesauce and Johnny Appleseed
*Colos, Cookies, and Cycle of a Butterfly
*Dancing Dinos and the Dinosaur Museum
*Floating Pumpkins and Pumpkin Cookies
*Fall and Feathery Bird Friends
*Halloween Haunts and Boo Bubbles!
*Giggles with Mother Goose
*Horses and Farm Animals
*Insects and Spiders
*Shapes and Blessing Turkeys
*Jamming with Sea Creatures
*Our Bodies
*Naughty Newts (Manners and Nail Polish Painting)
*Pajama "P" Party
*Mooses Muffins and Healthy Munchies
*Opera Singing Ostriches and Talents (Corn syrup Painting)
*Martin Luther King and Modern Day Heroes
*Groundhog Day and Shadow Tag
*Chinese New Year Celebration
*U.S. Presidents
*Race Cars, Trains, and Painting
*Tooth Aches and Dental Hygiene
*Recycled Robots
* Family, Stories, Traditions, and "U" Puppets
*Valentines Exchanges
*Green Eggs and Ham and Dr. Seuss Day
(Read Across America Weekend)
*Spying Leprachauns
*Seasons and Spring
*Marking "X"s and Easter Bunny Baskets,
*Weather Games and Wiggly Worms (Chocolate Pudding Painting)
* Tying Shoes,
*X-Rays, Doctor's Office Field Trip,
*Five Senses Fun
* Zebra's and Zoo Stories
*Mother's and Father's Appreciation and 
Getting Ready for Kindergarten, Hooray!

 A Preschool Good-Bye

Sticky Fingers, freckled noses
Head, shoulders, knees, and toes-es.
Shapes and colors, ABCs,
Taking turns and 123.

Toothless smiles, hugs and giggles,
Circle Time and lots of wiggles.
Wooden blocks and dress-up clothes,
Learning how a flower grows.

Milk and cookies, first-time friend,
thinking days like these won't end.
Preschool done before you know it,
No one sooner than this poet.

Like a butterfly, time has flown,
you have learned and you have grown.
Tiny chairs give way to desks,
book reports and spelling tests.

So take off now, spread your wings,
soar to new heaughts, learn new things.
Just remember, as you do,
someone's very proud of you.

Students had fun trying to keep their Graduation caps on! Our program was very sweet as the children sang to their parents: I Can Sing a Rainbow, Popcorn Popping (first with actions and second with our "poppers"), ABC Sounds (Waterford Inst.), Mother Dear (could use When I Grow Up), and My Dad.

I spoke about some of our class memories from this past year and then it was time to receive our diplomas, ABC books, and Summer gift bags (see poem below: Bags, Writing Booklets, Shapes, Numbers Train, eraser, pencil, fruit roll-up, Smarties, bubbles,...)

It was fun to get a high-five, hand shake, and a few hugs from students.

I loved smelling Seth's home baked bread and Dade's Chocolate Jar gifts. (Thanks Karen and Maren.)

We enjoyed the Circus Animal Cookies, Sugar and Chocolate Chip Cookies, Clementines, Smarties, and lemon water. Something sweet to linger after all the sweet voices and giggles have gone.

Recess time with friends.
Oh The Places You'll Go by Dr. Seuss
I Can Read With My Eyes Shut by Dr. Seuss

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Kindergarten Hooray!

Are you going to Kindergarten this Fall?

Toys: Instead of toys and free play today, we worked on a special surprise for our moms and dads. 

Snack: Goldfish and Ritz crackers, and Capri Suns (with individual names and lizards on them!  Thanks Ethan and Sydne for the extra fun "End of the Year" snack today.)

*When I was Five by Arthur Howard (Fun book to talk about.  What story would you tell about your best friend, secret hiding place, favorite dinosaur and car?)
Miss Bindergarten Stays Home From Kindergarten by Joseph Slate and Ashley Wolff (Days of the Week review, ABCs, etc.)

Activity: Today we worked on Mother's Day and Father's Day surprises for our parents.  "I love you, Mommy.  Here is how I will help you:  "  "I love you, Daddy.  Here is how I will help you:   "

We had a lot of fun wrapping up our drawings in paper (and practice with scissors, folding, and sticking tape).  

Memorable comments include Kayson shaking his finger with a piece of tape stuck on it over-and-over and then cracking a smile.  "(Teacher,) It likes me!"  Eleanor carried two rolls of paper in from the other room.  "I'm the strongest in my family!"  Dade, "(The wrapping paper rolled across the floor) It's REALLY long!"  William (smiling and waving his hand around), "(Teacher) It's tape!"

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Z is for Zoo

Toys: Fisher Price Village and Animals

Snacks: Green and Yellow Pepper strips, celery sticks, baby carrots, chocolate chip cookies, and Teddy Grahams.

Circle Time Activities:
We reviewed X and Y sounds and finished up the activity pages that go with these.

Zoo Books:
Birthday Zoo by Deborah Lee Rose and Lynn Munsinger
Color Zoo by Lois Ehlert
From Head to Toe*by Eric Carle (Great pictures, Activity Book for young people)
Put Me in the Zoo
Dr. Seuss Books

Janeen Brady "I Have a Song for You," Vol. 3 About Animals
"We're Going to the Zoo Tomorrow"

Thursday, April 17, 2014


Are you excited for Easter?

Toys:  Tinker Toys, Doorbell House, Blocks, Train Table, Lace-ups and Shoes.

Snack:  Gold fish crackers, fruit snacks, and Blue bunny Peeps.

At snack time, Kayson began to tell us that "Easter is not all about jelly beans and chocolate bunnies."  This was a greats segue into "Why do we celebrate Easter?"  We talked briefly about Easter being the day when we remember Jesus Christ and his life, death, and resurrection--that we will live again--like the hope of Spring, eggs, and new life--chicks, bunnies, ducklings, etc.

I love teaching this beautiful age because the children's responses are so beautiful and pure.  "I'm going to give an egg to Jesus!"  "I'm going to paint Jesus on my egg!"

Recess Outside!  Yeah!  We got to go outside for a brief recess today.  Ethan took yellow chalk and began to write Xs on the outside of the house, walls, cement floor, etc.  "I'm marking the place where the Easter Rabbit can come--so he will find us!"

We saw a beautiful yellow and black tinted butterfly, budding roses, creeping insects, and loved sunshine.

Inside, we read stories about eggs and reviewed colors, predicted and counted eggs, and then water colored our own!

Ethan remarked, "My egg is a 'Fireworks Egg!'."  The other children then began to name their egg creations.

He found us!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

I Can Tie My Shoes!

I can tie my shoelaces*? 

Shoe tying begins around age 4 and is a skill still to be mastered at age 6.

Toys: Lace up figures, shapes, and book; marbles, (new) FP Castle, Princes and Princesses, and Village. (It was fun to see how the boys got very involved in imaginary play with the princes and castle!)



Snack: Apple slices, pretzel sticks, and powdered doughnuts.

Circle Time:  Today we read about a little girl who was afraid to go to Kindergarten because she thought she had to tie her shoelaces by herself, without help! She learns that almost all Kindergartners are still learning to tie their own shoelaces. 
(**We did not get to our Show ' Teaches today.  Please have your child bring it on Thursday.)  

Eva's Un-Birthday!   
Eva Marie was born on April 13 by emergency C-section.  (She had an 8 inch cord wrapped around her neck).  We are so happy to have her in our family!  She turned four on Sunday.  She loves pink, her family, princesses, playing, and ponies.  She told the class her father (an Actuary/I.T. Chief) "washes dishes and cleans the floor" at his job!  (It is great when dads pitch in at home, rare, but nice!)  When asked what she will learn this year, she told the class,"You have to be careful!"  She might have been reflecting on a recent accident when she slipped climbing a loft ladder and let go/fell.

 Kayson helps me Demo how to Tie Shoes*: 
(One trick is to tie different colored laces together in the back--children are still learning right and left hands and so colors help.)

Step one:  Have child hold one lace in each hand and "cross" together--(make an X), then tuck one end under, and pull.

Step two: wrap "bunny ear" (loop) around thumb and pinch with left index and thumb. 

Step Three: With right hand, "chase" lace around the loop 
and poke little bunny ear through.

Step Four:  Pull second ear through loop

Step Five:  Pull ears apart and tight.

 Finished!  So proud.

*There are several ways to tie shoes (cross rabbit ears, etc.  See Links for Rhymes, songs, "Magic Fingers" Youtube, and suggestions.)
Whose Shoes Are These? A Learn to Tie Your Shoelace Book by Lisa Carr (Barnes and Noble).
*Countdown to Kindergarten by Alison McGhee, Ill. by Harry Bliss


Skills to practice at home:

  • Threading small items--yarn threading block necklaces, and threading cereal rings (coat string ends with tape), lace ups, etc.

  • Practice shoe tying (dad's Church shoes, mom's tennis shoes, etc.)

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Weather and Wiggly Worms

Weather Day:
Daily Question:  Ww  Do you what weather means?  We live in the atmosphere, an enormous ocean of air that surrounds our earth.  Weather is what is happening at the bottom of the atmosphere, driven by the heat of the sun.
 Check out our name writing!

Toys: Train Table, ABC Blocks, Lite Brites, and Tinker Toys

It was fun to see how the children joined up as spontaneous partners and played with the Lite Brites this morning.  Cute conversations overheard--what types of jokes they might play on April Fools (from Tuesday's lesson).  "Hey, you have a spider in your hair!"  "Teacher, I see some popcorn on your nose!" Etc.

 Ethan had fun making machines (cars) with Tinker Toys.
 Dade shows the other children how beautifully he signed his name on a Thank You card to teacher.  Sweet boy!

Snack: Cheese Sticks, Animal Crackers and Swedish Fish.

Circle Time: We talked about what is weather and made our own Storm!  We enjoyed listening to several stories about weather.  (See books in bold).

Activity:  W the Worm wiggles from Washington State to West Virginia each week.  Worm forgot to check the weather and had to wiggle "w/w/w" through wet mud.  Painting with chocolate pudding, repeat the W action (wiggle chest from side to side) and song.   

 Not all the children loved painting with pudding!
 Ethan enjoyed it!  He kept saying, "Oh Teacher!  This is making me hungry for choc-o-late pudding!"



Weather Songs:

  • It's Raining, It's Pouring
  • Popcorn Popping on the Apricot Tree
  • If All the Raindrops Were Lemondrops and Gumdrops

Janeen Brady's songbook "I Have a Song for You

If All the Raindrops If all the raindrops were lemon drops and gumdrops
Oh, what a rain that would be!
Standing outside, with my mouth open wide
Singing La la la la, la la la, la la la, 
If all the raindrops were lemon drops and gumdrops
Oh, what a rain that would be!
If all the snowflakes were candy bars and milkshakes
Oh, what a snow that would be!
Standing outside, with my mouth open wide
Singing La la la la, la la la, la la la, 
If all the snowflakes were candy bars and milkshakes
Oh, what a snow that would be!
If all the sunbeams were bubble gum and ice cream
Oh, what a sun that would be!
Standing outside, with my mouth open wide
Singing La la la la, la la la, la la la,
If all the sunbeams were bubble gum and ice cream
Oh, what a sun that would be!

Our Class Rainstorm:  Our class simulated a rainstorm by patting pants (like rain)--slow than faster, some students snapped, some clicked their tongues, some students clapped, and some students hit shoes on the ground.  It was fun to listen to the storm we created with our hands and feet!

Weather Books:
Rain Drop Plop (Audio CD) by Wendy Cheyette Lewison and Pam Paparone
Chicken Soup with Rice; A Book of Months by Maurice Sundak.
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs by Judi & Ron Barrett
The Biggest Boy by Kevin Henkes and Nancy Tafuri
Weather by Seymour Simon
The Big Storm by Bruce Hiscock
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats (DVD, Scholastic)
Sky Tree:  Seeing Science Through Art by Thomas Locker
Arty Facts: Weather and Art Activities (Crabtree Pub.)
 Water, Ice, and Steam (Rosen Real Readers) by Ira Wood
Nature's Fury: The Power of Weather (Parents Choice Award) Readers Digest Childrens

Weather Words: umbrella, snow, rain, rainbow, clouds, smog, fog, ice, rain coat, rain boots,  sun shine, sleet, blizzard, thunder, lightening, wind, kite, hurricane, tornado, tsunami,

Season Reveiw: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer.

The weather has been "April Foolin'" us today!  First it was rainy, then sunny, then overcast, and then sunny again!  I Like how Kayson discovers this rain puddle and begins to splash.

What time is it Mr. Raindrop? This is a fun game to play outside. You can change the name to suit any theme. The children all line up against a wall or fence. And one child, Mr. Raindrop or the teacher faces away from the children, a good distance away from the children. The children yell, what time is it "Mr. Raindrop", Mr. Raindrop answers 1 o'clock, and the children all take one step toward Mr. Raindrop. The children yell again, what time is it "Mr. Raindrop", Mr. Raindrop answers (fill in the blank) o'clock, and the children all take same number of step toward Mr. Raindrop. This continues until all the children are very close to Mr. Raindrop, then Mr. Raindrop will answer it's midnight, and chases the children back to the fence or wall that they started at. The first person Mr. Raindrop touches will be the new Mr. Raindrop.

Freeze Tag with Jack Frost, Dade, and the Sunshine Fairy, Eleanor.  Frost "freezes" the children and Fairy "melts" them.

Look what we found Popping (blooming) in the back yard--an Apricot tree!