We finished our peace curriculum ending the unit about love as we entered into February. It is so good to see many children wearing love lights representing the kind gestures they are showing their friends. The children were busy making valentines for their loved ones and decorating bags for the valentines they received last Friday. We celebrated the holiday with some fun circle games followed by a very tasty strawberry shortcake treat.
We are thrilled to have Ms. Ross back teaching two days on Tuesday and Thursday. For those who are new this year, Ms. Ross co-taught with Ms. Govindaraj last year before the pandemic and is now ready to be back in the classroom part-time. Ms. Leach continues to teach on Monday and Friday in the morning with Ms. Govindaraj.
We are off to outer space for our in-depth unit for the next couple of months. At circle-time, we introduced the concept of models using our sandpaper and continent globes to show the earth. Ms. Govindaraj displayed how to put a model onto a map by cutting a playdoh sphere in half and flattening it on a board, showing the children the two hemispheres of our world. We sang the continent song “Tell me the continents…” hoping the names will make it easier for the children to remember. Next, we introduced the eight major landforms using our beautiful wooden carved-out molds for the children to fill water. They particularly like to use land and water objects to put on the forms.
We started with the “Creation Story” and talked about the Big Bang theory and will work down to our universe, galaxy, planets, earth, and space exploration. We were excited to share the news of the recent rover landing on Mars and hopefully will show a video of the actual landing.
The Hemlock building has begun our major curriculum unit on our State of Washington. The kids are enjoying learning about many of the things they have seen themselves. A few of the topics are our state flag, flower, bird, orcas, apples, biomes, many of our mountains and major rivers, the Mt. St. Helens volcano eruption, salmon life cycle, Ballard locks, Boeing, and Lewis & Clark Trail. Mrs. Fidelis has put together many new works for the kids to support their learning of Washington State which have been well received.
Even with all this, we have celebrated three birthdays, welcomed several new students, talked about Presidents Day, Chinese New Year, and had a super fun Valentine’s Party. The kids decorated Valentine bags to hold the cards that their fellow students brought to give out. Much of the day (Friday, Feb. 12) was spent distributing the cards which are always something kids look forward to. We also had a simple snack of popcorn and apple while we played games as a group like “Who’s Missing” and “Musical Chairs”. The kids were amazingly good at listening to directions, waiting their turn, and being good sports. I love how the kids treat each other with respect, try to be helpful to each other, and enjoy doing things as a group.
The snowfall presented a chance to talk about snow and snowflake shapes. It was perfect timing for kids to enjoy the snow yet not present any school closures. Our last connection to current events was the landing of the lunar rover on Mars. The kids are interested in outer space and to see pictures of Perseverance on the red planet was an amazing thing to be able to show them.