This Month in the Classroom
November was fun in our classroom. The children enjoyed working on the art project for the Fall Fandango and did a beautiful job! They surprised me with a smaller version of it that I will hang in the classroom.
Cooking and going outs are in full swing! Every week we have students going to HEB and cooking a recipe of their choice. A big shoutout to the wonderful parents who have been volunteering their time to drive our wonderful kiddos.
In Language, the younger students continue to work on phonics, and everyone’s reading skills have improved since the beginning of the school year. They are also exploring word study by learning prefixes and suffixes. I have been reinforcing all the grammar lessons to make sure the concepts are being learned and understood, laying a solid foundation for the other parts of speech, writing, and sentence analysis. Everyone is writing in cursive now; a student said: “There is a saying that an apple a day keeps the doctor away,” then “a cursive worksheet a day keeps the teacher away” ;-)
The older students have been writing wonderful stories; some new students started writing stories as well. Amazing persuasive and compare and contrast papers have been written this past month. One of the full-cycle students made a comparison paper between math and language works in the classroom; my favorite part was the ending: “I love them both”. Another student mailed a letter to the governor persuading him to declare a student holiday the day after Halloween. One of the younger students wrote and mailed a letter to his grandparents, who live far away.
All new students and some old ones too listened to the last two Great Stories: The Story of the Alphabet and The Story of our Numerals. Usually, all great Stories are told by October, but this year we have had a lot of absences due to illness or trips, so I had to wait until I had everyone here.
In math, many students are working abstractly on different operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division). Older students have been working on word problems, learning laws of mathematics like the Commutative Law and the Distributive Law, and going through different lessons on multiples and common multiples of numbers. New and mid-cycle students continue to advance toward the passage to abstraction through new lessons/levels of Chequerboard, Racks and Tubes, Large Bead Frame, as well as Geometric Multiplication and Stamp Game.
In Biology, we have been learning about the needs of plants, parts of the plant, and the leaf. The children have enjoyed working with Ms. Lacey on the garden twice a week; our planting beds are blooming and gorgeous. Some groups have been able to make and enjoy tea with herbs they have harvested themselves (pictures included). Another activity the children have enjoyed is tending the chickens. Some naughty chickens have escaped the pen when the kids leave the gate open, and then trying to catch them back is both fun and exhausting at times.
In Geometry, some students are working on different types of angles; older students learned how to measure angles using a protractor. I enjoyed listening to the students making connections between angles and sports! I think some students understood sports better after learning that a whole angle is 360 degrees.
Field Trip to the Nutcracker
Thursday, December 8th. If you haven’t signed the permission form yet, please do so before Monday, Dec. 5th. If you decide to keep your child home that day, please let us know by either answering “No” on the permission form or by sending us an email so that we can coordinate how many drivers we’ll need. We also sent envelopes home for the $10 ticket cost.
Please remember to send back the envelope for the ticket if you haven’t done so already.
Thursday, December 15th at the Elementary Playground. This missed-by-all-children tradition is back (keep your fingers crossed for good weather!!!) This is a great tradition to start the Winter Break. We will gather by the fire as a community; the children can play, and you can mingle with other families. Bring your chairs, dinner, and drinks!
Early Dismissal (12:30), Pajama Day, Fun Day, and Serenade
Friday, December 16th. Our tradition is to have a pajama fun day on the last day of school before the Winter Break. Children can come in their holiday PJs or any PJs. They can bring ONE stuffed animal and ONE board game to play with their friends. Please label everything.
Another Mountain Laurel tradition is back this year, our Holiday Serenade. Our class has been practicing songs, and the children plan to Serenade you right before dismissal. Please be in front of Mountain Laurel Porch by 12:15; the children will stand on the stairs and sing their little repertoire.
Ways to help our classroom
Maya and Claire
Mountain Laurel Cottage