Author Archives: Ms. McClellan

Term 1 Week 4 Update

Well we certainly came back from the break with a bang! I’m very excited to tell you about our new IEYC unit: Chattering Children. It’s all about fostering communication. Guiding us through this unit is our friend Mr. Mole. The children have loved having him teach along side me. We began with the day that we met Mr. Mole by having a scavenger hunt for various things around the classroom because Mr. Mole doesn’t know where anything is. We then looked for our initials hidden in the classroom and made an About Me poster.

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The next day Mr. Mole delivered us some mail. He’s not so great at reading so he delivered the envelopes to the wrong children and they had to sort themselves out and give the envelope they had received to the right child. Inside were little notes of inspiration. Then we made our own envelopes to hold any writing work we’ll be doing in this unit.

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Mr. Mole surprised us with a picnic where we practiced asking for food politely at the table.

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We got some practice writing letters to each other. Mr. Mole delivered them to the right children this time.

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And today we worked on some literacy skills matching animals to their names, learning about animal sounds, and playing an animal letter bingo.

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But IEYC isn’t all we’ve been up to! We’re still doing phonics and we covered the letters H-K this week.

In Math we worked on subitizing (recognising instantly groups of numbers) 1-5 and we added 6 today. We do this through song and also through different hands-on games.

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For something a little different in PE while the Year 3-9 were away on their field trip, we did some yoga with the Cosmic Kids Yoga program.

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And of course we had developmental play time where the students became very interested in building and playing out some familiar scenarios.

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Term 1 Week 3 Update

What an intense, short week we’ve had. We had an amazing Chuseok celebration on Monday; a fantastic trip to the Ulju Mountain Film Festival Tuesday; and today we’ve had a low-key day with our regular routine of Calendar, Math, Phonics as well as some tablet time, creative playdough exploration, and some developmental play. The students are learning and growing so much through all these different elements of their education. I hope everyone who celebrates Chuseok has a special time with their families and those who don’t make good use of the time off to connect with one another still in the spirit of thankfulness that Chuseok reminds us of. Have a great long weekend and we’ll see you next week. Don’t forget about our curriculum evening on Monday at 5:30 and school photos on Wednesday.

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Term 1 Week 2 Update

Well, it certainly was an interesting week here in FS 1/2. With rainy days and a lot of absences, we didn’t have a typical week. We still did lots of rich learning, however.

Continuing in our IEYC unit, Brainwave, Professor Spark sent us some video messages and set us some challenges. We learned about Knowledge, Skills and Understanding and how they come together. Professor Spark promised us some magic in one of his messages and that was shown with our 3D glasses. We also designed our own obstacle course and tried it till we had the skills to do it successfully. Finally today we brought our learning back to thinking about the brain and made a mini-book about what makes a healthy brain.

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In our Math we’re expanding beyond simple counting and into subetizing and writing our numbers. Today we played a game where we rolled a number cube, counted the dots, and wrote the corresponding number.

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In Phonics we continued with our letter sounds, one letter one day at a time. This week we did letters C-F.

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And as always we’re strengthening social emotional learning through developmental play. Some new scenarios played out this week and some familiar ones. Some students are taking on the role of teacher and insisting I sit on the carpet and listen to their lesson. Other times they’re playing firefighter and saving our classroom. And sometimes they’re just stretching their brains by building block towers as high as they can.

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Don’t forget about our special Chuseok program on Monday and our trip on Tuesday. Clubs will be as normal after those 2 special days and classes and clubs will be as usual on Wednesday before the break.

I hope everyone has a great weekend. Try to stay dry! We’ll see you next week!

Term 1 Week 1 Update

Wow we’re off to a great start here in FS 1/2. The students had a great week getting to know each other and settling into classroom routines. Our class jobs have been assigned and the students are excited to rotate through their positions as line leader, screen monitor, and lights monitor.


We began the week by making “about me” representations of ourselves.


Our math is focusing on the numbers 1-5 during our calendar time. We’ve counted all the way to 5 because we’ve been in school 5 days. We’ve also looked at many different ways to represent 5 – as a tally, on a domino, and on a tens frame.

In Phonics we’ve begun letter sounds. This is a review for some children but it’s good to have a strong foundation. We’re also learning how to write letters clearly.

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In IEYC we’re starting with our Brainwave unit. We’ve transformed the classroom into Professor Spark’s Learning Lab. We’re learning about the brain and how we learn. We’ve learned that our brain makes connections and that it gets stronger the more times we practice things. The students are really excited to be helping Professor Spark with his research.

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And of course we’ve had plenty of time for developmental play. Developmental play is essential to learning in the early year. It allows students to process the teaching they’ve been exposed to and to develop social and emotional connections.

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We also had our first PE lesson of the year today combined with the Year 1-2 class. All PE lessons this year will be combined allowing a for larger group of students. They had a great time with their friends.

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That’s all for this week. Have a restful weekend and we’ll see you back on Monday ready to learn!


Homework Folders

As you have seen in your child’s backpack today, a pink folder containing homework was sent home. This is work your child should be able to do nearly independently and is a review of work we’ve done in the last week.

Every Friday homework will go home in the folder and should be returned, in the folder, by the following Wednesday.

If you have any questions or concerns about homework, please let me know.

Ulju Mountain Film Festival Trip Permission Form

We’re starting this year off with a bang. We’ll be going to the Ulju Mountain Film Festival on Tuesday September 10. The bus will leave the school promptly at 9:05am and will return by 3:10. Students will still be able to attend clubs.

At the festival we will make some upcycled cars out of boxes, watch a short film, and do some (age appropriate) climbing.

Please make sure to pack a snack, lunch, and water bottle for your child.

Here is the permission form. Please have it signed by Tuesday September 3.

Library Books

Hello! As you may have noticed, your child came home with a library book in a blue book bag today. In order to cultivate a love of reading, your child has been allowed to choose a book that they wish to read or have you read to them this week at home. The book stays home all week and should come back next Thursday for their library class. On that day and every subsequent Thursday during library, the children will choose a book to bring home for the week.

Being read to is an integral part of a child’s literacy development. Try to make time for reading every day. Make it a fun and stress free time to help foster lifelong reading habits.

Happy reading!

Welcome from Ms. M


Greetings! Welcome to FS 1/2 for the 2019-2020 academic year.

My name is Marie McClellan, or, as my students call me, Ms. M. I am very excited to be starting a new year here at HFS as the FS 1/2 Class Teacher. We’ve got a lot of great things in store this year. I am thrilled to be using our new IEYC curriculum which is play-based and full of hands-on enquiry and exploration.

Just to tell you a little bit about myself, I am from New Brunswick, Canada along the Atlantic coast. My father still lives there but my brother is in Japan. I have been teaching for 13 years – beginning my career in Korean hagwons, then Korean public school, an international school in Indonesia, a bilingual school in China, and finally returning to Korea where it all started to work here at HFS. My undergraduate degree is in Multimedia Studies from the University of New Brunswick and my B.Ed. is from Queen’s University.

In my free time I love to travel, knit, and cook. I have been all over Asia – Korea, China, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and the Philippines. Just this summer my family went to Thailand. It was a wonderful experience because my brother-in-law was able to join us travelling all the way from his home in Ohio. I cook a variety of foods from Indian to Ethiopian, to comfort food from Canada. I’ve been knitting since 2003 and love to make hats and mittens. I love the autumn when it’s time to wear all that knitwear again. I also spin my own yarn. I look forward to seeing some familiar faces and getting to know some new friends over the upcoming academic year. Please don’t hesitate to contact me. My door is always open.