Week 8 Wrap Up

It seems another week just flew right past!

In calendar time yesterday we celebrated 30 days of school so far (31 today). We learned that 30 is 3 groups of 10 and added onto that today showing that 31 is 3 groups of 10 plus 1 more.


Math Buddies continues to be a success. We are learning about same and different and different ways of sorting and patterning. Because we’re working with a spiral curriculum we are continuing to review the numbers 1-5 that we worked with last week while adding on our sorting and patterning lessons.

Some Math reinforcement homework went home with the FS2 and Y1 students. Please don’t hesitate to give me feedback about the homework. This should all be work that the students should be able to do independently (although they will need to have the instructions read to them). If this is proving not to be the case, I really would like to know.

IMG_20181015_093725 IMG_20181019_093616 IMG_20181019_093600 IMG_20181016_095320

And, as mentioned, we have begun our Writers’ Workshop. This initial 20 day unit is called “Illustrators? Yes!”. The students are learning that they can tell stories through pictures. This week we worked on writing stamina: that is to say, we keep writing even when it gets hard. We’ve established all the parts of our writers’ workshop: the mini lesson (when the teacher gives direct instruction), the independent write (when the students write their stories), and today we introduced sharing time where students can practice sharing their stories with the class.


In IPC we continued to explore our 5 senses.

IMG_20181016_141433 IMG_20181018_141729 IMG_20181018_142059 IMG_20181017_135258

Our wonderful Ms. Jiyu discovered for us this week that we have access to the playground equipment during our PE time. So, we took full advantage of that this week during the wonderful fall weather. Next week we will switch between structured PE classes and unstructured playground time.

IMG_20181017_115352  IMG_20181019_114925

Have a wonderful weekend and I look forward to seeing everyone on Monday.


Marie McClellan


Kidzania trip permission and agreement form

Dear Parents,

Kidzania city

As part of our IPC learning unit on “A Day in the life” we will be looking at different jobs and occupations. Kidzania theme park in Busan offers a unique learning opportunity for children to experience what it is like to work in different jobs. HFS would like to organize a trip to Kidzania for the year 1/2/3 children on Tuesday 6th November.

You can view the Kidzania website by clicking here.

The price of admission is 23 000 Won. HFS will cover most of the cost but parents will have to contribute 10 000 Won towards the entrance fee. Note: This reduced entrance fee only applies to a group of 15 students or more so all parents must agree in order to make the trip viable.

Parents are asked to complete the online permission form by clicking here by no later than Monday 22nd October.

Best regards,

Mr. Kearney

Week 7 Wrap Up

Another successful week here in Ottawa class. The students are readjusting after being away for the holiday and then having another day off this week.

The launch of our math program has been a success. In the morning after we have our Hello Song, Morning Meeting, and then Calendar Time, we move on to Math Buddies. Math Buddies is what we call our friends who participate in the academic math learning that we do. FS1 is invited to participate and they do from time to time, but primarily my Math Buddies are FS2 and Year 1. This week we focused on the numbers 1-5. As previously mentioned, we’ve been working on number sense since the beginning of the year incorporated into our Calendar Time so this was largely a review and a way to ease the students into a new routine. Next week we will start a 10-day unit on Sorting and Classifying. All Math Buddies participants were given homework this week (including the FS2s). The students have all shown great competency in counting, identifying numbers, displaying them with manipulatives, and using dots or lines to indicate a quantity. However, they all struggled with forming the numerals 1-5. As writing numbers is a foundational skill in Math, I have decided to send home some tracing sheets for independent practice in forming numerals.

IMG_20181012_095022 IMG_20181012_095654

This week we also began our IPC unit called Sensation which is an exploration of the 5 senses. The children’s interest was hooked when we popped some popcorn in the class and talked about how we experienced it: what it smelled like, how it tasted, how it felt, how it looked.

20181011_134433 20181011_134740 20181011_135130 20181011_140539

I’m also excited to announce we will be beginning an extension on our literacy program next week. Writers’ Workshop is a 9-unit genre-based writing program that aligns with the Cambridge curriculum. The students are showing great literacy readiness and it’s time to start to push them. Again the FS1 students will be welcome to join in the writers’ workshops and there will be plenty of age-appropriate activities for them. We will kick off the Writers’ Workshop with a 20-day unit called “Illustrators! Yes?” where students will be primarily using illustrations to convey a story.

20181011_200227-COLLAGE IMG_20181011_150858 IMG_20181011_111142

Our days may be getting busier but we still have plenty of time for developmental play. There was a great interest in exploring puzzles this week. There was also lots of block building and teamwork being shown.

IMG_20181011_111836 IMG_20181011_112637

That’s all for this week. I hope you have a great weekend and we’ll see you on Monday!


Marie McClellan


Week 6 Welcome Back!

Honestly it was so great coming back to work this week. I missed the students and I could tell from their interactions, they had really missed each other. Thursday saw a beautiful sunny day to welcome us back. The fall temperatures were perfect for playing outside. The rain today didn’t dull our energy too much.

This short week back also brought us a new student to FS1: Olivia. The whole class was happy to have a new friend come join us.


We only learned one new letter sound this week: the letter N. Our first day back was spent reviewing the 13 letters we already knew.


We’ve started a new month on our calendar and thanks to David we’re learning a new Months of the Year song. Our math program will be expanding starting next week and we’ll be focussing on the numbers 1 – 5. Instead of doing a usual 10 day unit, we will be covering these numbers in 5 days as we have focussed on them a lot during our calendar time so this will largely be a review. Also, this marks the beginning of a transition away from as much developmental play and into more guided academics. This will be a gentle transition and our day will still have a lot of play.

This week also saw us wrapping up our IPC “Who Am I?” Unit. To cap off the unit we made a time capsule that we will look at again just before we break for the summer holidays. The students decorated our time capsule with coloured paper, sequins, stickers, pompoms, pasta, googly eyes, and more! Then they all drew and decorated a special picture of something they wanted to remember our class by and we sealed it up in the capsule.

IMG_20181004_140234 IMG_20181005_135406

Next week we begin our new IPC unit called Sensations, where we will be exploring our 5 senses. Our intro to the topic will be a 5 senses based exploration of popcorn. As one of the senses is taste, we will be eating the popcorn. If there are any allergy or dietary concerns that I do not know about that would impact your child and this lesson, please let me know ASAP so I can plan an alternate lesson. I will be making the popcorn in an air popper so there is no oil involved. Also I will not be dressing the popcorn (no butter, no salt). The only thing we will be eating is popped corn. This lesson is planned for Tuesday. (Please don’t mention this to your child as I want it to be a surprise to “hook” them into the topic).

The rainy weather didn’t keep our energy too low for PE class. We learned great new games and had a very active time.

20181005_120313 20181005_114546 20181005_115907

But we were pretty tuckered out afterwards.


Have a great weekend, stay dry, and I look forward to seeing everyone on Monday!


Marie McClellan

Week 4 Wrap Up

“20 Days!” I said to the students as we added a blue post-it with the number 20 on it to our number strip this morning. “Can you believe we’ve been in school for 20 whole days?!” Every morning we have a calendar routine that involves counting the number of days we’ve been in school – all the way till we reach 100. Today marked a big milestone: 20 days!

Every day it’s a delight to watch the students learn and grow. In our math this week we’ve been comparing numbers to see which one is less or more. The words “less”, “more”, and “same” are some good math words you can review at home to help cement the knowledge we’ve acquired this week.

In Phonics we covered the letters J-M. That was another milestone we hit this week: we’re half way through the alphabet! We’ll continue on basic letter sound phonics for the next 13 days after we return and then we move on to Unit 2. See which of your sounds your child can remember by prompting them with “A – ahhh” while putting your hands to your face as if you’re screaming; “B – b, b, b” while waving your hands like a orchestra conductor with their baton; and “C – c, c, c” while shivering and pretending you’re cold. Can they remember all our actions and sounds all the way to M?


In developmental play, the students were really interested in building with stickle bricks and legos this week. There are 3 different sized stickle bricks and they don’t all fit together so the students had to use some problem solving skills to make their creations. They also continued exploring familiar scenarios with home and hospital toys. A new variant of our kitchen play has emerged: the jungle picnic. The students bring food in shopping carts from the kitchen play area to another part of the room and gather together with the stuffed animals they discovered this week.

IMG_20180918_145810 IMG_20180921_102314 IMG_20180920_114315 IMG_20180919_113755 IMG_20180918_150904

Thank you all so much for sending in photos of your family for our IPC project. The students were so excited to see themselves and their family in the photos when I printed them and even more excited to make their “Who Am I?” autobiographies. Some of them even continued to add to their books during their play time.


And wow! What an amazing Chuseok celebration we had today. We began in class watching a short video about Chuseok, talked about our family’s plans, coloured a picture of women making seongpyeon, and read a traditional Korean folk tale. Then we went to the gymnasium with the whole school to play traditional Korean games. It was a first for me to play those games so it was really fun experiencing it with the children. After lunch we had a great assembly (who can forget Mr. Kearney wrestling with Mr. Choi!), a wonderful dance, and my favourite: eating songpyeong.


I hope you and your family have a great holiday. Don’t forget to keep reading together over the holiday. We’ll see you in October!


Marie McClellan

Week 3 Wrap Up

Another successful week here in Ottawa Class.

We had a quiet day on Monday while all the other students in the school were off on their first field trip. The children can’t wait to be old enough to join them. But don’t worry, we will have age-appropriate field trips throughout the year. They had a great time in the library, however, and were excited to take out their first books from the library. Please remember to return the books on Monday. Then can then take out new books.


The school turtles arrived in our class on Monday as well and the students have been taking turns feeding them all week.


I am pleased to see how motivated to learn and write the alphabet the students have become. Over the weekend I enlisted the help of my 6’5″ (196cm) husband to put up some of the high displays that were lacking in the class and the class was greeted with a colourful alphabet above the whiteboard. They noticed immediately and began to sing the alphabet song! In phonics this week we introduced the letters E-I but that didn’t stop the children from wanting to write all the letters in the alphabet on their white boards. With the use of our alphabet mat that we can bring down to the table, or just looking up at the display, many students practiced writing.

IMG_20180911_145307 IMG_20180912_142018 IMG_20180913_111021 IMG_20180913_111220

The students have also begun to notice some of the alphabet educational toys available for them to play with and are choosing those over the usually-favoured kitchen.

IMG_20180911_112507 IMG_20180911_112503

With a wide variety of learning activities the students have a rich play life where they act out scenes from life and learn social rules, new vocabulary, motor skills, and how the world works.

IMG_20180914_142541 IMG_20180913_122415

We introduced some new games into PE. The students still love playing Red Light/Green Light but this week we added a balloon bouncing game called HAPPY (a variation on the ball game HORSE) and Through The Tunnel where students take turns crawling through the legs of their classmates all the way from one side of the hall to the other.

20180912_115443 20180912_114346

In IPC we continued on our theme of Who Am I? Exploring a sense of ourselves. If you haven’t yet, please email me some photos of your child as a baby and the rest of your family so we can continue making our Who Am I? autobiographical books. Details can be found in the post I wrote earlier this week (link).

IMG_20180912_144257 IMG_20180912_144303

Have a great weekend. More learning awaits next week!


Marie McClellan

Photos from home for IPC project

I have asked the full-day children today to bring some photos from home for our “About Me” IPC project. I am happy to receive physical or digital submissions. If you send a physical submission, please know it will be incorporated into a piece of work and while that work will eventually go home with your child, the photos may not be in their original form. Digital photos will be printed by me for use in the project.

Please send:

  • photos of your child as a baby or younger child
  • photos of your child’s siblings at their current age or a younger age or both
  • photos of your child’s parents at their current age of younger age
  • photos of anyone else in your child’s family at any age (this can include grandparents, aunts and uncles, cousins, or family friends who are close and you consider “family”)

Feel free to send lots of photos. The more we have to work with, the more robust this project will be.

Please send digital submissions to my email at: mariemcclellan@hyundaiforeignschool.com

I would appreciate having all submissions by Thursday.

Thank you for your cooperation,

Marie McClellan

Library Books

As you may have noticed today, your child came home with a library book in a special book bag (I know some of them don’t fit). How exciting!

Clearly, the children in Ottawa class do not yet read. So, I would like to ask you to read this book to them. Instilling a love of reading is important from a young age and the first step to that is being read to. The research shows that being read to is almost as important to a child’s reading development as reading independently is. As a matter of fact, don’t feel restricted to only reading this library book. If you have books at home I encourage you to read with your child for at least 10-20 minutes a day. Also, don’t feel compelled to only read in English. Strong literacy skills in a child’s first language translate to stronger skills in their second language. Lastly, it’s not only the parent who needs to read to the child. If your child has an older sibling who can read, they can spend time together reading. This will improve both children’s literacy skills.

The children have Library Class every Monday. Please make sure the book is returned in the book bag each Monday. During Library Class the children will have the opportunity to choose a new book for that week.

If your child wants to bring their book to school to read during the week, that’s OK. The books can come back and forth with them to school in the book bag. It will be sent home every night. However, it must be returned on Monday for Library Time.

If you have any questions about this, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Marie McClellan

Week 2 Wrap Up

Here we are at the end of Week 2! Everyone seems to be in to the swing of things. We were joined by Gabriel this week and the class welcomed him with open arms.

20180904_144321 IMG_20180906_143412

We began our phonics program this week. It’s called KinderPhonics. It’s a 3-unit program that goes from letters to words. Our first 26-day unit is simply the letters of the alphabet. It’s 26 days because we will be doing one letter per day. This week we covered A to D.


We also spend time reading together and the children also get the opportunity to explore books alone. Sometimes they share books together in our reading corned.

We continued our numeracy program. We’ve counted up to 10 so far this year – one day for every day of school. We will continue counting the days of school until we hit 100 days (and then we celebrate!). Our number focus this week was comparing numbers 0-5. We used number cards and manipulatives to see whether numbers were more than or less than each other.


We had a great time in PE with a combination of structured games (more Red Light/Green Light, of course) and some free time to run around, and throw and kick balls.


Now that the whole class is here, we began our IPC unit: Who Am I? The students started exploring who they are; what makes them the same and different; and the different range of emotions that they have. We’ll be working on this unit until the Chuseok break.

Have a great weekend and I can’t wait to see everyone on Monday!


Marie McClellan

Homework – Week 2

Some homework was sent home with all the students today. Please check your child’s backpack. It’s actually for the parents/caregivers to help me get to know your child. If you can fill it out and have it back to me next week, that would be fantastic.

For Year 1 there is a separate sheet for the students to fill out to tell me about themselves.

Going forward, homework will only be for Year 1 students. It will be given on Friday and I would like to have it returned by Wednesday. There will not be weekly homework notices on this webpage. Please check your child’s backpack on Fridays.

Thanks very much,

Marie McClellan