Friday, November 9, 2018

Forest Friday, November 9th

The day that we made shapes!

"I hope to see bugs."
"I hope to play kitties."
"I hope to see the fire."
"I hope to see trees."

This morning we wrote a journal entry about our hopes for our time in the forest.  Some of us thought of what we might play while others focused on what they might see.  Each of us stretched our words out and wrote the letters that we could hear.  We also wrote some sight words in our sentences that are in our Word Garden, such as "see" and "the"!

During sit spots we noticed that some of our painted rocks were not where we left them last time.  We wondered what might have happened to them.  Maybe an animal came along?  Maybe other friends might have played with them and forgotten to put them back?  Or maybe fallen leaves were covering the rocks?  
We shared what we noticed while we were in sit spots when we came to the fire.  Some of us noticed sticks that looked like dinosaurs.  Others heard the wind blowing through the leaves of the trees.

Before play time we were given the challenge of making our focus letters that we had been learning in the classroom.  We could make an M, N, W, or Y.  Since these letters have straight lines we were able to make them with sticks.  Here are some of the letters that we made.

During play time Mr. Sadowski let some of us use a wooden cup and ball toss game.  Some of us were able to get the ball into the cup!  It was very challenging.  Others played in the wooden cabin, protecting shiny stones.  Many of us ran around and built structures with large sticks.
Before lunch we split into groups to do some math work.  This week we focused on making shapes.  We started by making a triangle with sticks which has three straight lines.  Then we made a rectangle after we found another stick since rectangles have four straight lines.  We made the shapes again but this time we used our bodies!  We loved making the shapes, getting a picture taken, and then checking to make sure that we had made the shape successfully.

For snack we had tortellini and ravioli.  It was warm, buttery, and delicious.  We ate it all up!

It was a little chilly today but we were very thankful that it did not rain on us!

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

October is Already Over!

Here is a glimpse into what we have been up to in the classroom this month!

For our morning work we have been building our finger strength with play dough, building, pin poking, and coloring.

We have started literacy stations for four days each week.  There are four groups practicing various focus letters.  We write the letters, create the letters, and match them with the sounds that they make.  So far we are learning upper case letters.
When heading outside for recess, sometimes we like to have a little race to the playground...

It's getting pretty cold out there!  Some of us even found some ice on the playground.

Before our free play during choice time we often do a craft or activity related to whatever science or social studies subject that we are focusing on.  This month we conducted a pumpkin investigation where we looked carefully at the outside as well as the inside of the pumpkin.  We also did several fun crafts to learn about weather and to celebrate Halloween.

We were so lucky and got to go apple picking at Riverview Farm!  We learned about how apples grow and got to pick our own apples to bring home.  They were tasty.

Our second field trip of Kindergarten was to the Hopkins Center to watch a beautiful performance of The Rainbow Fish.  The puppets that they used in the show glowed and were very magical.  It was a "no shushing" show so many of us laughed and gasped as we watched.

Here we are making our very own rainbow fish after watching the beautiful performance on the stage.  Each of our fish had one glittering scale among the rainbow scales.  We loved that Rainbow Fish shared his pretty scales with his friends.  He was showing kindness.

On our bulletin board outside of our classroom you can see all of our fish swimming together!

Our forest learning has been fun and freeing!  We have learned how to be by ourselves in our sit spots, how to play safely with sticks, and how important it is to try something (like a snack) before we say we don't like it.
On Halloween we had a new guest teacher.  We had a fantastic day of learning and it was a great way to end the month of October!

Friday, October 26, 2018

Forest Friday, October 26th

The day that we cooked muffins!

"I hope to see bees."
"I hope to play."
"I hope to see a cabin."
"I hope to see an apple tree."

We worked hard in the morning to stretch out words to hear sounds.  We were excited to think about what we wanted to see or do in the forest.

Many of us found our rocks in our sit spots that we had painted last week.  We were able to sit and notice what was around us so that we could share out at the fire.  Some of us saw the beautiful leaves, some of us heard the breeze going through the trees, and some of us touched sticks around our sit spots.

Before going to play we were given a challenge.  Since we were focusing on uppercase letters with straight lines this week in the classroom, our challenge was to make one of our focus letters with sticks.  This picture shows some of the letters that we made.  We made X, W, Y, and V.

Our friends in KR made muffins to bring into the forest this week for snack!  We cut them in half and heated them up over the fire. They were warm and delicious.  It was also a treat for us to have hot chocolate for the first time in the forest.  It will probably be a good thing to have in the weeks to come as it gets colder.  We are excited to bake for the next time that we go into the forest.

Before lunch we did some counting.  Similarly to last week, we gathered and counted ten sticks and then practiced skip counting.  We had gathered eighty sticks!  We also stayed warm by playing "touch ten trees".

We won't be in the forest next week because of parent/teacher conferences but we are looking forward to seeing the changes in our forest classroom when it's time for us to return!

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Forest Friday, October 19th

The day that we painted rocks.

"I hope to see a campfire."
"I hope to paint rocks."
"I hope to see trees."
"I hope to see a fox."

We start each forest day with a little journaling.  Our goal is to think about what we hope to see or do in the forest.  We are working on hearing sounds in words as we stretch them out and say them slowly.  We are also trying to remember that a sentence ends in a punctuation mark and so we have been practicing making a period to show that we have finished a thought.

Our craft for the day allowed us to paint rocks.  We used our creative energies to make our rocks colorful and then we placed them in our sit spots so that we may be able to find them more easily each week.

After a bit of play time we split into groups and worked on a math challenge.  We needed to each collect a group of ten sticks of the same size.  After we all checked to see if we had ten we skip counted by tens.

For snack we ate some cream of chicken soup that had been heated over the fire.  For a little added tastiness we got to put some croutons into our soup.  It was the perfect way to warm us up.

Before heading inside we did a little cleanup and moved more rotten and large logs to our stick pile.  
We were so lucky to have a sunny and cool day today.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Forest Friday, October 12th

The day that we cooked rocks!

Our playtime was fun and colorful!  We built big and little forts, moving sticks of all sizes.  We also moved around leaves and helped to make snack.

The big question was... were we going to eat rocks or something more edible?  Here are our faces as we watched rocks sitting over the fire.  Luckily we did NOT eat rocks.  We were just drying them over the fire so that we can soon paint them to mark our sit spots.  Instead we ate maple glazed carrots.  Here are our faces when we put our actual snack on the fire.

They carrots were warm and tasty.  So many of us liked them!  There were orange and even purple carrots.  Some of us even got to do a taste test.  The question was, do the different colored carrots taste differently?  We put on a blindfold and tried each color.  They tasted the same!

After lunch we did some work in the forest.  We cleared out more big logs.  It looked different and more clear when we were finished.  It was another beautiful day in the woods.

Friday, October 5, 2018

Forest Friday, October 5th

The day that...
we ate delicious snacks!

Before heading outside we began making applesauce.  The first step was to prep the apples.  We had to cut them and put them into the crock pot.  It took a lot of effort to cut some of them!

In our sit spots we sat quietly and noticed what was around us using our 5 senses.  We brought those ideas back to the fire so that we could share out to the whole group.  Some of us heard birds. Some of us saw leaves rustling in the breeze.  Some noticed the blue, blue sky.

During play time we enjoyed running around and climbing the steep, slippery rocks.  We also made a crafty fall crown with the colorful leaves.  We got to find the leaves and design what it looked like.

Here are some of us wearing our crowns!

For snack we helped prepare grilled cheese to cook over the fire.  It was cheesy, warm, and so tasty.

When we came inside we checked on the apples in the crock pot which had been cooking while we were in the forest.  Once they were mushy enough we squished them and and through tiny holes, applesauce emerged!

We snacked on the warm applesauce with a dash of cinnamon.  We had a delicious day! 

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Soaring Through September

Here is a glance at what we have been up to in September!

During our first few days of school we made a gingerbread man.  When we went to check on him in the oven we found that he had run away!  We followed clues around the room until we finally found him in Mrs. Newton's office.

In the morning students arrive and head to their tables to do some morning work.  The activities have included fine motor activities with the goal of building finger strength.  Other activities have included making patterns.

During our literacy time we have been working with letters.  Mrs. Marshall has been joining us from time to time to help us know our left from our right and to help us learn about Mat Man.  We have also been using wooden tools to build uppercase letters.  Soon we will be connecting the letters with their sounds and breaking into small groups for learning centers.

Here we are during some of our literacy activities.  We have been identifying and making uppercase letters.

Through our literacy work we have also been working with our names!  One project included making our names into rocket ships.  We were "Blasting off to Kindergarten!"

During math we use Workplace stations to explore and practice various skills.  With the materials that we have, we build and use our creative skills.  Soon we will have stations that allow us to practice writing numbers and build combinations to five.  We will also continue our work with patterns.

Students learned about the 5 Senses this month.  We explored our senses of sight, smell, taste, hearing, and touch through various experiments and activities.  In these pictures we are doing a taste test and recording whether we liked the food items or not.

Choice time is a class favorite.  We get to play and relax in the afternoon, choosing whichever activity we would like.  Some of us paint, build towers, pretend to be dinosaurs, and read books.

Our time in the forest has been so much fun!  It has been a little wet lately but we have been making the most of it.  The snacks have been tasty and we are learning how to take care of the natural space.  Soon we will begin learning stations in the forest.

When we come inside from the forest we end our day with our 3rd grade buddies.  They bring books and read to us!  It is always a fun way to end our week.