Sunday, March 18, 2018

Forest Friday, March 16th

"I hope to shoot a catapult." -Brave Black Bear

"I hope to help Mr. Sadowski bake egg rolls." -Magnificent Moose

"I hope to write in the forest."

We worked hard to think of what we wanted to do or see in the forest.  Some of us start by drawing a picture while others start with a sentence.  We stretch the words out like a rubber band and listen for the sounds that we hear.  Sometimes we get to write sight words which are in our "Word Garden", like 'a', 'I', and 'the' which some of us used in our journal entries that are shown above.

Even though we were away from the forest for several weeks, we were all able to remember where our sit spots were!  We had several minutes of alone time in our spots before we headed back to the benches by the fire to share what we noticed.  We noticed the trees swaying in the wind, different branches of varying shapes, and how the snow felt.

A friend from KR noticed some black things by her sit spot.  Some of us went over to investigate after our share time and also spotted some small footprints.  We think that the small footprints were deer tracks and the black things are scat!  We learned that scat is a fancy word for animal droppings. 

During play time some of us were finding the perfect spot to slide.  Others played family in the log cabin.  Being in the forest helps us use our imaginations since we don't have actual toys out there.  We have to pretend and create!

For snack we got to try egg rolls.  Almost all of us loved them and wanted seconds!  We didn't make these from scratch but we roasted them over the fire in some oil so that they would get nice and crispy.

We are amazed by how much snow is still out in the forest!  It was a bit windy today but we were sheltered from the trees.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Forest Friday, March 9th

"I hope to sled." ~Mannered Meadow Vole
"I hope to see a bird." ~Relaxed Red Fox

We wrote in our journals before we went outside.  We have learned all of our uppercase and lowercase letters.  We are working on learning various sight words.  These sight words are words that we see most often in books, such as the, and, is, etc.  In our journals we are also working on stretching our words out slowly to hear different sounds.

There was so much snow in the forest!  The trek up the hill was a little slippery and we could hardly see a trail and so we made our own trail.  After sit spots we sat around our fire pit and shared what we noticed in nature.

During play time there were several activities going on at once.  Some of us helped Mr. Sadowski with snack.  Some of us warmed our hands by the fire while others found great sledding runs down slippery rocks! 

For snack we had pancakes.  We mixed and mixed the ingredients so that there weren't any lumps.  Before tasting the pancakes we got to have a small little pour of delicious maple syrup.  All of us loved the pancakes!

"I ate pancakes." ~Wonderful White-Footed Deer Mouse
"I went sledding." ~Glowing Grey Tree Frog

Overall we had a fantastic first day back in the forest!

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Flying Through February

February flew by!  (It went so quickly that it was sometimes hard to remember to take pictures.)  Here is a glance at a few things that stood out this month!

We have been working hard to learn sight words.  We play games and do other fun activities that help us read, write, and create the words in various ways.  In these pictures we are using watercolor paints to trace different sight words.  In the other picture you can see some work that we have done with word families.  We recently finished a project where we wrote the word families in Truffula trees (like in the Dr Seuss story The Lorax).

Earlier this month we made bird feeders to hang on the tree outside of the classroom.  These bird feeders were made with pine cones, peanut butter, and bird seed.  Now that the weather is a bit warmer we have noticed birds coming and nibbling at the bird seed.  It's so exciting!

We continue to earn "alphabits" when we are following school rules and doing expected behaviors.  Our celebrations have been a blast so far but our most recent celebration was the best of all!  We made play dough and we got to choose a color and glitter to mix in.  Plus, Miss Wetzel brought in some new cookie cutters to play with!

We have still not had very much time outside in the forest.  We have made quick trips and are hoping to officially be back to our normal forest routine in March (depending on the weather of course).  We really enjoy when both kindergarten classes can be together! 

It was amazing to celebrate being in school for 100 days as a class.  We did so many fun activities!  (You can also check out the blog post all about that fun day.)

At the end of the month we began celebrating the lead up to "I Love to Read" month.  There were several fun spirit days such as crazy sock day, favorite book character day, and Read Across America Day. 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Celebrating 100 Days In So Many Ways!

We have been excited and waiting for the special day to arrive... 100th day!
It's hard to believe that we have already been in school for 100 days!  We were able to celebrate in a lot of fun ways.

Our first task was carefully coloring a 100th day crown.  "I am 100 days smarter!"  We could not be more proud to wear our crowns.

During snack time we made a 100 piece snack.  We organized the 100 pieces with a page full of ten frames.  We filled the ten frames with 10 cheerios, 10 marshmallows, 10 chex, 10 kix, 10 butterscotch chips ("Butterscotch chips smell like my mom's coffee!"), 10 goldfish, 10 raisins, 10 chocolate chips, 10 M&M's, and 10 pretzels.  It made a delicious trail mix!  It also made for a fun way to count by 10's!

When it was our official math time we did even more counting!  We were stringing fruit loops on yarn, separating each group into 10.  We needed to be extra careful to double check our fruit loops to make sure we had exactly 10 for each group.  Just like our crowns, we wore our fruit loops proudly after we finished counting out exactly 100! 

We had each brought in a collection of 100 things.  They were displayed for all to see.  It's fun to see what everyone brought!

It's really too bad that Miss Wetzel was home sick on 100th day...  HOWEVER we had a lot of fun with Granny Wetzel who was our guest teacher for the day and she is actually 100 years old!

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Just a bit about January

Here is a a look into what we've been up to in January!

In kindergarten we are working hard on writing our letters and understanding the sounds that the letters make.  When it is writing time we first sit as a whole group and work together to write a sentence.  Some help write letters or even some words! 

When we write we focus on...
- Starting our sentences with an uppercase letter
- Using lowercase letters throughout our sentences
- Putting spaces between words
- Adding a punctuation mark at the end of the sentence
- Making sure the picture has a lot of details and careful coloring

In addition to our whole class writing time and our literacy groups, we play literacy games.  We have played Memory and Shoots and Ladders with lowercase letters, Bingo with letter sounds, and Go Fish with consonant-vowel-consonant words.  Games can be the best way to learn sometimes!

When we have snack we get to chat with friends who sit at our table.  We have been practicing good snack time etiquette by chatting with quiet voices, staying in our seats, and cleaning up after ourselves.  We are having way less milk spills than we used to have at the beginning of the year! :-)

This month we have had some of our recesses inside because of rain and freezing temperatures.  We don't always like to be cooped up inside but we try to make the most of it!  We love to paint and color but a lot of us choose to build as well.  We use our creative ideas to make towers, automobiles, and even robot helmets.

During our science time we have been learning about winter.  At first we focused on weather, learning about the water cycle and what the temperature needs to be for water to freeze.  When we were learning about snowflakes, students made several different versions.  We even cut snowflakes for decorations.  We know that each snowflake is unique.  
Recently we have been talking about what animals do in the winter.  Hibernation, migration, and adaptation, oh my!

In STEAM this month students have been crafting and creating a carrying device that Jack can bring up the Giant's beanstalk!  After several sessions of planning and constructing, students got to test their creations with an actual egg!

We are lucky enough to have the ski program at our school.  Some students in KW have participated and are having such fun.  While the skiers are away, the rest of the students stay at school to play and explore.  It is a great way to end the week!

Students continue to earn "alphabits" for expected behaviors in the classroom.  We have had several more celebrations but I believe that everyone can agree that pajama day is one of our favorites!

Tuesday, December 26, 2017


Here is a glance into what we have been up to for the month of December!

Mrs. Marshall came into our class for a lesson about Mat Man.  She taught us a song that will help us remember the ten parts to draw when we are drawing pictures of people. 

We have started playing literacy games before snack time.  So far the games have been partner games like the Shoots and Ladders game that you can see us playing here.  All of our games will help us identify letters and the sounds that they make.

Before our vacation we were lucky enough to learn how to safely sled while we are school.  We take turns so that one person can go down at a time.  We also share sleds because there are a lot but not enough for each student to have one. 

Every Wednesday we have "Color Lunch".  The two kindergarten classes mix together at different tables.  We sit at certain tables depending on which colored unifix cube we pick from a mystery bucket.

One day we came into the classroom and it had pretty colorful lights!  They stay on throughout the day and are especially a treat during rest time.  Many of us like to lay under them and admire their glow while we rest. 

This month our Work Place games have challenged us but they have also been a lot of fun!  We have put together pattern block puzzles, counted and compared numbers, and practiced making estimations.

We haven't had a chance to go into the forest too often this month but we have really enjoyed the time that we have spent out in the fresh air!  The snow gave us the chance to snow shoe and we had a blast.  We will not go into the forest while the ski club is happening this year.  So stay tuned for more forest related posts in February! 

During social studies we have been learning about holidays around the world.  We were able to do many crafts and activities that took us on a trip to the various places that celebrate the holidays differently than we do.  Our studies focused on Hanukkah as well as Christmas in Mexico, Italy, Germany, and in the United States.

Our winter concert was such fun this year.  Some of us were a little nervous but we all had so much fun performing for our family and friends.  In music class we were able to watch a recording of ourselves.  We will look forward to the spring concert so that we can perform again! 

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Forest Friday, December 15th

Since it was so cold we couldn't get outside right away.  We had to wait for it to get to ten degrees.  There were three thermometers that we used to check the temperature throughout the morning.  

In the morning we followed our normal schedule for the most part.  We had our Morning Meeting and Number Corner/calendar time and then we had a brain break! 

We also had a warm snack while we were inside.  The soup was so warm and delicious that we ate it all up.  It was cream of chicken and cream of mushroom soup!  We had crackers and bread to dip in our soup.

Before lunch we learned how to put snowshoes on.  Since it had snowed so much we figured it would be easiest to have snowshoes to adventure into the woods.  After lunch we put our snowshoes on and made our way up to our home base! 

The forest had changed so much since we were last there.  We could barely see the fire pit and we had to brush off several inches of snow from the benches.  We were able to explore the area in our snowshoes for a bit before heading inside for P.E.

Some of us shared our thoughts about snowshoes!
"Snowshoes are fun and slippy. Mine fell off!" -Mannered Meadow Vole
"I like snowshoes.  They are fun to play in.  I have some at my house." -Relaxed Red Fox