Week 9 Update

Oof, what a week! We hit some major milestones.

On Monday in Writer’s Workshop, we graduated to writing our stories in our writing journals instead of on loose leaf paper.

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We introduced the concept of “stamina” at the end of last week and have been continuing to work on it this week. We’ve also been applying it to other aspects of our day besides literacy. In writing we also learned about adding detail and began to introduce the concept of stories having a setting.

What the children are probably most proud of this week: we finished the alphabet. We have learned all our letter sounds from A-Z as individual letters. Beginning next week we’ll start to combine letters into blends, digraphs, dipthongs, and begin to associate more words with letters. This next unit will take approximately 60 days. One of the ways we celebrated being finished the alphabet was to have a dance party stopping and freezing into the shape of a letter.

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In Math we’ve finished our unit on sorting and patterning. I am pleased to report that all our Math Buddies are able to create and predict simple patterns. Some of them find the more complex patterns a little tricky but that’s OK. Working with patterns is part of our daily routine in Calendar Time and the patterns will become more complex with lots of repetition throughout the month we are working with that pattern.

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We’ve had quite the time in IPC exploring our senses. This week we worked with a combination of sight and touch. It was actually the students who pointed out to me that we worked with touch in our first exploration. We began by looking at some art that was optical illusions and then using sponges and watercolour paint to try to make our own op art. When I spoke to them the next day to activate their prior learning, I asked “what sense did we use to create our paintings yesterday?” and unflinchingly they replied “touch”. They were certainly correct. It was a very hands-on project (that is to say: messy) they were grabbing bits of sponge, squishing it in the paint, and pressing it onto their paper where the liquid oozed out over their hands some more.

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As the week progressed we continued to work with touch and sight and created feelings-based self-portraits.  One thing I love about IPC is that it is a very holistic curriculum. 5 senses is a very science-based theme but still we spoke about emotions and recognising feelings. On the first day of the project I took photos of the children showing different emotions on their faces. This was quite funny because these kiddos are so happy that even when they were trying to show me a sad or an angry face they were all smiles. Then they chose which of their photos they wanted to create in clay and used playdough to represent their likenesses. The next day we used scrapbooking texture scissors to trim our portraits and mount them onto cardboard. Then we used Ms. M’s big box of stuff and an abundance of white glue to create a frame for their art. Finally, they observed their pieces, named their emotion, and wrote it on a sticky label using those phonics we’ve been working on.

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I wonder if the kids are as ready for the weekend after all this excitement as I am? Have a great one and we’ll see you on Monday.

Best,

Marie McClella