Friday, January 22, 2016

Kindergarten is SNOW Much Fun!

Dear Families,
Even though it was a short week, we have been very a busy here in Room 6! Our theme has been on winter, snow, and snowmen. Please take a peek into what we've been learning!
This week, we started Unit 2 in Fundations.  The children learned how to "tap" the sounds they hear in CVC words. When the children tap the sounds in words, they say each individual sound they hear in the word while simultaneously tapping their thumb to their index finger for the first sound, their thumb to their middle finger for the second sound, and their thumb to their ring finger for the third sound in the word. After saying each individual sound, they blend the sounds together and say the whole word by tapping all three fingers together. Please take a look at the pictures below to see how finger tapping works.

 Image result for ring finger tapping fundationsImage result for ring finger tapping fundationsImage result for ring finger tapping fundations

For example, if we are tapping the word "sat," we would say /s/, /a/, /t/ while tapping each finger to our thumb. 
Some examples of words we practiced tapping together this week include: 
sat, sit, rat, mat, mop, sap, sad, mad, rad, rip, rap, etc. 

At home, practice "tapping" sounds in words with your Kindergartener. Show them a picture or tell them a word, and see if your child can say all the sounds in the word by tapping! 
Please check under the "What We're Learning" tab for more information about tapping and some words you can practice with. 

Sight Words
This week, we also learned about sight words. We have learned that sight words are "tricky" because we cannot sound them out when reading or spelling. These words have to be taught and learned.
The five sight words we learned this week are:

Each week, we will learn 5 new sight words, and practice them during our center time. It would be helpful if your child practiced these sight words at home with you to reinforce his/her learning. To know which sight words to practice, check the "What we're Learning" tab on this blog. 
**Also be on the lookout for our first Tic-Tac-Toe homework boards to be coming home next week.** 

Guided Reading:
This week, we began guided reading instruction in small groups. I have been so impressed with the children so far. They have done an excellent job remembering to read their Take-Home book to a parent or guardian and bring back the book to school the next day. Please remember that he purpose of rereading the same book to you or other caregiver is to reinforce what has been learned in school. If any questions or concerns arise, please don't hesitate to contact me! 

This week, the Burlington Elementary Math Coach has been coming in to teach us some strategies to use when problem solving. The acronym we use is called TIPS, and stands for Thinking, Information, Plan, and Solution. The children have been working very hard and I am proud of them! Next week, we will continue to learn about addition in Topic 7. 

New Class Pet! 
The students have been working so hard over the past few weeks writing letters to Ms. Pavlicek and/or Mrs. Johnson, to persuade them to let our class have a pet to take care of.
Both Ms. Pavlicek and Mrs. Johnson agreed to let our class have pet gerbils!

We are looking for some donations of paper towel rolls, tissue boxes, small pieces of cardboard, etc. for our pet gerbils to nibble on. Please feel free to send them into school with your child. Any donations would be greatly appreciated!!

Thank you in advance, and we are excited to take care of our pet gerbils for the next few weeks!

Report Cards:
Report cards for the First Term will be going home on Monday, January 25th. As always, if you have any questions or concerns about your child's progress report, I am more than happy to talk with you on the phone or set up a conference in person. 

Guiding Questions:
- Have your child practice writing the sight words we learned this week with a fancy pen or marker. 
- Ask your child to tap out the sounds in the following words: mad, rat, mop, sap, sit. 
- Read a story to your child or have them read a story to you. Can he/she retell what happened in the story?
- Ask your child some simple addition questions using numbers up to 5. For example: If there were two children playing blocks on the rug, and three more children came to join them, how many children are playing with blocks in all? 

Looking Ahead:
Don't forget! Our next Field Trip is on January 29th. We are going to the Discovery Museum in Acton, Ma. The children will be able to have lots of fun exploring and learning! Thank you to the chaperones for volunteering for this field trip!  

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