Our APEX Fun Run was just that....so much fun!! We loved learning from the coaches all week and building our character. We are blown away by the amount of support that we received! THANK YOU!!!
Our classroom is a zoo. Literally. I have penguins taking over my whiteboard stage, reptiles on my small group table and some reaaaally cute giraffes peeking over our working mats!
We have spent 3 busy weeks learning all about animals. We started this project learning the difference between living and nonliving. We know that living things need food and water, grow & change, they breath, can move on their own, and can make more just like itself/reproduce.
We compared real goldfish and goldfish snacks to see things they had in common and how to determine which was living.
Last week, we learned all about animal classification. Each day we focused on an animal group (mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish. We focused on their traits and needs, how they move, whether or not they are oviparous (Whoa...college word!!) and their habitats. We wrapped up this week with a trip to Crowe's Nest Farm and it was so.much.fun!!! Nothing makes a teacher heart sing quite like hearing kids relate lessons in class to the real world. Ex: "Mrs. Manning!!! Look at that amphibian!!!" "Check out the hair on that pig...it must be a mammal!" Wow. Just wow.
To showcase all that we have learned about animals, we have decided to make a zoo for families to visit. This week has consisted of animal sorting, habitat making, sign and map creating....and lots of fun and learning along the way!
This is, hands down, the kids favorite part of the day. Mine too, honestly!! This is our social-emotional learning time. We have just recently started incorporating our Second Step program that focuses on a variety of life skills: listening, problem solving, empathy, etc. It is wonderful!! During this time, we do a mini lesson together, then the kiddos get to choose their work area and get busy! Work areas range from art, to science, to collaborative games! We LOVE it!! We focus on specific character traits and read mentor texts that help support our learning. Our most recent character trait was "Optimistic". You'll notice in one of these pictures, that a sweet kinder friend is writing down some of our character traits! Heart melt! The kids work on engineering tasks, art projects and a variety of skills all while focusing on collaboration! Below: friends practicing sight words together, character trait lists, building a mouse trap together, and creating beds for goldilocks!
Last week we learned all about different types of landforms! We went on a "landform hunt" and talked about different landforms and bodies of water and how to navigate them. To wrap up our study, the kids got to choose one landform to create...keeping in mind the plant and animal life specific to that landform. I was BLOWN AWAY by their creativity and the connections they made! Caves complete with bears, lakes with fish swimming around and trees surrounding it, and island complete with palm trees....these kids are amazing!
Man! What a day!!! We had so much fun celebrating being 100 days smarter. The kids came up with the funniest lists of things they would NOT want 100 of and things they would like to have 100 of. We tested to see how many times we could jump in 100 seconds...and learned that we have some seriously fast jumpers! Students practiced counting to 100 by ones and tens and I was blown away at what super counters they are! We all enjoyed our 100 day snack and counting out our sets of 10. To wrap our day, students participated in STEM Challenges such as building with 100 legos, 100 cup stacking, building playdough cakes with 100 candles, and rolling dice to race to 100. I think the students were pretty convinced that Mrs. Manning had stayed home for the day...and Grandma Violet had taken her place!
Practicing Number Combinations to 10 is WAY more fun when you get to show your work by writing on the table!
We have been working hard to answer the driving question..."How can we, as genealogists, discover and communicate what makes our families unique?" Kindergarten students had the privilege of having parents come to share with us some important parts of their culture. We learned about China, India, Puerto rica and African American culture (thanks to our own Mrs. Robinson!) We have done interviews, created lists together, read some great stories about being unique, showed off our fancy clothes, and celebrated with our traditional foods together and learned SO much about each other during this time. To say the past few weeks have been enlightening would be a severe understatement. I am always in awe of these kind-hearted kiddos...but to see them celebrating other traditions and cultures really just tugs on my heart strings. During this project, we also spent some time talking about Martin Luther King Jr. and had visitors from South Korea! Talk about real world connections to being unique and celebrating diversity. I am so proud of the work they are doing. Enjoy some pictures of our work below:
We had such a great time at our PBL Showcase events. Students started their showcasing journey by presenting to 5th grade classes on Thursday. It was so great to see the confidence that was built in each kiddo as they shared their work and talked about their families. We are so grateful for a school family that supports our learning!! On Friday, families came to see the final showcase. It is always so wonderful to have family support, and this day was definitely proof of our invested our families are in our learning!! Thanks for coming!
We are wrapping up our first PBL (Project Based Learning) about spiders! The kids have had such a good time with this project and I think we have finally come to an agreement...most of us anyway, that you should NOT squish a spider. Many spiders are helpful and eat insects that are harmful. Farmers are very grateful for spiders because they help eat insects that harm their crops. We have learned about many types including: Tarantula, Trapdoor spider, Jumping Spider, Black Widow, Brown Recluse and Wolf Spiders. We know all about the different spiders prey catching techniques! Did you know some spiders do not spin webs? Instead, they hide in burrows and wait for their prey! Sneaky! We have even gotten the chance to observe a real Tarantula! Students have re-created the spider life cycle and know all about spiderlings! The most important thing to remember though? Spiders are NOT insects...they are arachnids!