Recently in Dalia's Weekly Plans F11 Category

Our Healthy Bodies-Katie

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Plants in Spring-Sharon

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Spring Session 2012- Weekly Plan 5/14-18

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
May 14-18, 2012
Sharon Lead Teaching

Overview and goals
This week we will continue to explore our vibrant science area. Dalia added ladybugs (thank you to Eli and his family!) to our insect table with the mealworms/beetles near the baby chicks and plants to expand our investigations of growth, change and the life cycle. These have sparked lots of ideas and questions from the children. This week we will also begin to give a feel for "kindergarten" by setting up a special area with a desk, chalkboard, chalk and other "school" materials. This is a timely experience as some children will be moving on to kindergarten next fall. On Thursday we will be visiting Cornercopia, which is the student organic farm on the St. Paul Campus. We will expand our understanding of planting, composting and urban gardening. This will be a nice opportunity to make connections to healthy eating.

Expressive Arts
~Materials: Clay, paints, large paint brushes, paper, colored pencils, markers, oil pastels, staplers, tape. The top of the loft holds paper, scissors, markers, staplers, and tape.
~Rationale: Clay offers a unique method of expression. Insect and flowers serve as inspiration and tools will be introduced as the children's creations progress. Paint paper and paint brushes at the easel are available for expression and specifically for developing the muscles in wrists and fingers needed for writing. ~Skills: Creative expression, creative risk taking, hand-eye coordination, fine motor strength and development.
Science
~Materials: Ladybugs, baby chick eggs, incubator, mealworms, glass-coated insects, plants, rulers, pencils, paper, and magnifying glasses.
~Rationale: The plants, mealworms, baby chicks and ladybugs provide children opportunities to observe life cycle changes. We will support children's awareness and exploration of these changes by providing questions, paper, and drawing materials.
~Skills: Observation, scientific inquiry, comparison, reasoning, descriptive and scientific language, self-expression, and communication.
Math Manipulative and Games
~Materials: Rulers, Legos, Legos bases, puzzles, and Unifix cubes.
~Rationale: The children have shown enthusiasm for using the rulers for measuring their plants, and their creations with Legos and Unifix cubes. We will focus on accurate reading of measuring tools such as starting at zero and identifying inches. ~Skills: Measurement, number concepts, creative building, eye-hand coordination, fine motor development and finger strength.
Dramatic and Symbolic Play
~Materials: Under the loft: chalkboard, desk, and school supplies. Dramatic play area: flowers, petals, vases, baskets, order forms, purses, wallets, markers, pencils, and paper. In the animal cave: stuffed fish, turtles, frogs, chameleons, snakes, rabbits, and squirrels, fishbowls, aquarium, water dish, fish food, and fabric pieces.
~Rationale: Primary school materials added to the area under the loft will offer opportunities to practice school or kindergarten as some children will be attending kindergarten next fall. Purses, wallets and paper to make money will expand on activities at the very popular flower shop.
~Skills: Understanding of self and others, communication, language, vocabulary, emergent writing, number concepts, social interactions, sharing, collaboration and symbolic play.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, boards, paper, and writing materials.
~Rationale: Blocks will be available for children to extend and expand their symbolic play.
~Skills: Large motor development, fine motor development, creating, number concepts, spatial relationships, measurement, communication, and cooperation.
Language and Literacy
~Materials: Bound dictionary, classroom dictionary, blank papers, alphabetical dividers, books; pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, folded paper, stamp-sized paper, glue sticks, staplers, tape, cards with children's photos and names. Books related to: insects/bugs, spring, plants, flowers, and baby chicks.
~Rationale: There are several books integrated into the different areas to help support children's understanding of how to use books as sources of information. The children continue to use the literacy area to write notes, words, and illustrate cards.
~Skills: Pre-/ early-literacy skills, community, symbolic representation, vocabulary expansion, speaking, self-expression, creating, and imaginative/creative play.
Large Motor
Playground
~Materials: Balance beam, bikes, playground equipment, swings, shovels, rakes, buckets, scoops, hill, path, basketball hoop, basketballs, and swinging rope.
~Rationale: To encourage children to move their bodies freely. Have room to run and exercise in the fresh air.
~Skills: Cardiovascular endurance, balance, coordination, grasping, climbing, jumping, strength, flexibility, coordination, communication, large motor development, fine motor development, and cooperation.
Gym
~Materials: Stepping pyramid, climb and jump, balance beam, monkey bars, slide, rope and bumpy ramp, wall ladder, hanging tetherball, trampoline, bean bag toss.
Rationale: To support and develop upper body strength and core muscles, balance and cardiovascular endurance.
~Skills: Upper body strength, motor coordination, hand-eye coordination, propulsion skills, balance, depth perception, visual perception, lower body strength, physical endurance, turn taking, dynamic balance, cooperation, large motor development, and communication.

Thank you,
Sharon

Spring Session 2012- Weekly Plan 7/30-12/4

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
May 7-11, 2012
Katie Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
This week we will notice what happens with our experiments with seeds and we will continue to encourage the children to make predictions and share their ideas about plant growth. We will keep and eye on our eggs in the incubator. To expand or knowledge about eating healthy we will plan a meal. At large group, we will discover more about the topic of movement as well as musical concepts.
Expressive Arts
~Materials: Paints, large paint brushes, cardboard, paper, colored pencils, markers, oil pastels, staplers, tape, large roll of paper, and clay. The top of the loft will have colored paper, scissors, markers, staplers, and tape.
~Rationale: To provide children with opportunities for self-expression and to use a variety of art materials.
~Skills: Creative expression, symbolic representation, risk taking, hand-eye coordination, creating, communicating, fine motor development, hands and finger strength, and intrinsic motivation.
Science
~Materials: A set of planted seeds (these are part of an experiment), sunflower plants, mealworms, baby chick eggs, incubator, glass-coated insects, rulers, pencils, paper, and magnifying glasses.
~Rationale: To test our ideas regarding the conditions seeds need in order to grow. To explore and observe the life cycles of insects, plants, and animals.
~Skills: Observation, scientific inquiry, comparison, reasoning, descriptive and scientific language, self-expression, and peer interactions.
Math Manipulative and Games
We will continue to focus on measurement this week. We will encourage the children to measure objects around the classroom as well as their own bodies.
~Materials: Plants, rulers, Legos, Legos bases, puzzles, and Unifix cubes.
~Rationale: To expand on the children's prior knowledge about measurement and incorporate it into real-life.
~Skills: Measurement, creative building, eye-hand coordination, fine motor development, number concepts and finger strength.
Dramatic and Symbolic Play
~Materials: In dramatic play: flowers, petals, vases, baskets, order forms, markers, pencils, and paper. In the animal cave: stuffed fish, turtles, frogs, chameleons, snakes, rabbits, and squirrels, fishbowls, aquarium, water dish, fish food, and fabric pieces.
~Rationale: Expand on children's prior knowledge about flowers and plants in a symbolic play environment, practice number concepts.
~Skills: Imagination and invention, self-expression, speaking, emergent writing, number concepts, creating, cooperation, sharing, and symbolic play.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, boards, paper, writing materials, and musical instruments.
~Rationale: Blocks and musical instruments will be available for children to extend and expand their symbolic play.
~Skills: Large motor development, fine motor development, imagination and invention, speaking, creating, number concepts, spatial relationships, and measurement.
Language and Literacy
This week we will focus on rhyming!
~Materials: Bound dictionary, classroom dictionary, blank papers, alphabetical dividers, fun and familiar books; pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, folded paper, stamp-sized paper, glue sticks, staplers, tape, rhyming activities, and cards with children's photos and names. Books related to: insects/bugs, spring, plants, flowers, baby chicks, and favorites; musical staff and notes.
~Rationale: Rhyming is one way to encourage children to notice language patterns, pay attention to sound and have fun! The children continue to use the literacy area to write notes, words, and illustrate cards. We will introduce activities to incorporate the use of rhyming words.
~Skills: Pre-/ early-literacy skills, community, symbolic representation, vocabulary expansion, speaking, self-expression, creating, and imaginative/creative play.
Large Motor
Playground
~Materials: Bikes, playground equipment, swings, shovels, rakes, buckets, scoops, hill, path, basketball hoop, basketballs, and swinging rope.
~Rationale: To explore the environment outside of the school and large motor development as well as to build on in- classroom relationships.
~Skills: Cardiovascular endurance, balance, coordination, grasping, climbing, jumping, strength, flexibility, coordination, communication, large motor development, fine motor development, and cooperation.
Gym
~Materials: Stepping pyramid, climb and jump, balance beam, monkey bars, slide, rope and bumpy ramp, wall ladder, scooters, hanging ball on a rope, and tape lines.
Rationale: We will continue to support and develop the children's upper body strength and core muscles and will also provide opportunities for children to build their stamina and endurance.
Skills: Upper body strength, motor coordination, hand-eye coordination, propulsion skills, balance, depth perception, visual perception, lower body strength, turn taking, dynamic balance, cooperation, large motor development, and communication.
Special Interest
Lab School Camping Adventure: Saturday May 19th-Sunday, May 20th
Pizza Party: Tuesday, May 22nd, 6-7:30 (Rain date is Wednesday, May 23rd)
Memorial Day- No School, on Monday, May 28th
Last day of the year will be Thursday, May 31st, please plan on attending our classroom celebration of learning. Details to come!

Spring Session 2012- Weekly Plan 4/30-5/4

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
April 30- May 4, 2012
Sharon Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
We continue to observe and care for our sunflower seeds. This week we begin experiments with seeds. Children will make predictions about seed germination and growth under different conditions. We continue our discussions of healthy eating and care of our bodies. We will continue to talk about smart food choices and play Katie's food pyramid game. Dalia introduced the importance happiness to our health and we will continue to discuss other ways to maintain a healthy life. Many of the interest areas have not changed much as we have been so busy with visits and small groups. We want the children to have adequate time for exploration and fun!
Expressive Arts
~Materials: Paints, large paint brushes, cardboard, paper, colored pencils, markers, oil pastels, staplers, tape, large roll of paper. The top of the loft holds paper, scissors, markers, staplers, and tape. A variety of seeds for collage.
~Rationale: Use a variety of art materials and provide opportunities for individual expression and focus green/brown color mixes for tree and leaves. We will begin to rebuild our "Tree" to cover the loft; we hope that this location will inspire the children's dramatic play episodes. The large roll of paper will be used for continued body tracing. We will use the extra seeds to create collages and offer opportunities for creative endeavors as well as opportunities to notice their differences and similarities.
~Skills: Creative expression, symbolic representation, risk taking, hand-eye coordination, fine motor development, and intrinsic motivation.
Science
~Materials: Internal body models; torso with internal organs replications miniature human skeleton replica Variety of seeds, soil ,biodegradable planting cups, sunflower seedlings, rulers, note paper, individual seed germination experiments in plastic bags. Grow window with peas and beans. Bed of grass seeds'.
~Rationale: Hands on exploration of replicas our insides; lungs, heart, intestines and bones offer another opportunity (like x-rays) to examine unseen body parts. Opportunities to document the growth and care of our seeds and plants. Develop hypotheses about seed germination and growth under different conditions to add to our understandings and skills as inquiring and investigative people.
~Skills: Understanding our bodies, observation, scientific inquiry, comparison, reasoning, sorting, descriptive and scientific language, self-expression, and peer interactions.
Math Manipulative and Games
This week we will focus on measurement. We will encourage the children to measure their growing plants and keep record of their growth.
~Materials: Plants and rulers. Legos and Legos bases', puzzles.
~Rationale: To offer opportunities to experience and understand measurement, numbers, using rulers. To offer opportunities for creative building, and the support of fine motor skills.
~Skills: Measurement, creative building, eye-hand coordination, and finger strength.
Dramatic and Symbolic Play
~Materials: Pictures of the different medical instruments available in our doctor's office along with labels, stethoscopes, casts, thermometers, doctor's bags, doctor's cot, doctor gowns, signs with step-by-step instructions or what to do when you visit the doctor. Splints and other materials demonstrated by paramedics are also available. In the animal cave: stuffed fish, turtles, frogs, chameleons, snakes, rabbits, and squirrels, fishbowls, aquarium, water dish, fish food, and fabric pieces.
~Rationale: The doctor's office continues as place for expression and expansion of concepts, particularly those revealed by the paramedic visit and our discussions of how we keep our bodies safe. The animal cave offers additional opportunities for symbolic play and cooperation between the children.
~Skills: Understanding of self and others, communication, language, vocabulary, social interactions, sharing, collaboration, symbolic play, understanding of bodies.
Blocks
~Materials: New pipe connecting building materials, hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, and boards. Paper and writing materials and musical instruments on and under the loft continue to be used in block area to extend and expand symbolic play.
~Rationale: Continue to offer the children opportunities for creative building. The musical instruments are available as a provocation to include in the dramatic play scenarios in the back of the classroom.
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions. Spatial skills, creative building, large motor, and imaginative play.
Language and Literacy
~Materials: Special table with a bound dictionary, classroom dictionary, blank papers and alphabetical dividers. Fun and familiar books, pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, folded paper, stamp-sized paper, glue sticks, staplers, and tape. Cards with children's photos and their names written on them. Books related to doctor visits, our bodies, spring, plants, and favorites. Written musical notes and books near musical instruments.
~Rationale: Our classroom dictionary continues to offer plenty of opportunities to create community and feelings of confidence and success. The children are busy not only writing new words but also creating illustrations. Encourage children to read and/or look for information related to different seeds, plants and plants' life cycles. Exposure to musical notes as representation of alternative written expressions.
~Skills: Pre-/ early-literacy skills, building community, and symbolic representation, vocabulary expansion, social skills, and imaginative/creative play.
Large Motor
Playground
~Materials: Bikes, playground equipment, swings, shovels, buckets, scoops, hill.
~Rationale: To encourage children to move their bodies freely. Have room to run and exercise in the fresh air.
~Skills: Cardiovascular endurance, balance, coordination, grasping, climbing, jumping, strength, and flexibility. Social interactions in larger groups with games such as hide and seek and red light green light with Elizabeth's class.
Gym
The Gym has changed!!
~Materials: Stepping pyramid, climb and jump, balance beam, monkey bars, slide, rope climb up the bumpy ramp, wall ladder, scooters
Rationale: To support and develop upper body strength and core muscles. To provide challenging activities that foster muscular and cardiovascular endurance.
Skills: upper body strength, motor coordination, hand eye coordination, propulsion skills, balance, depth perception, visual perception, lower body strength, turn taking, dynamic balance
Special Interest
Large Group
Seed germination experiments- Dirt, sunlight, and water /dirt, sunlight, and no water / sunlight, water, and no dirt. Literacy/dictionary additions: Germination, Sprout, and Leaves-Yoga tree pose Song: Inch by Inch Row by Row -Measuring

Sharon

Spring Session 2012- Weekly Plan 4/23-27

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
April 23-27, 2012
Katie Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
Last week, we went on a nature walk and found many different seeds and sprouting plants. Some of the seeds were added to our science area. This week we will care for our seeds, notice the changes that might take place, and encourage discussions related to what we see. Our paramedics and ambulance visit was a success and this week we will revisit and reflect on this experience. Our classroom set-up and materials will support children's endeavors and will allow them to continue to investigate their bodies, focusing on the inside of our bodies.
Expressive Arts
~Materials: Table easels, clear double-paned table easel, paint, thin paint brushes, paint, paper, markers, color pencils, crayons, oil pastels, tape, and stapler. The top of the loft holds paper, scissors, markers, staplers, and tape.
~Rationale: This week we will continue to use a variety of art materials and to provide opportunities for individual expression. We will encourage the children to represent themselves on paper through painting, drawing, and body tracing. We will begin to rebuild our "Tree" to cover the loft; we hope that this location will inspire the children's creations.
~Skills: Creative expression, symbolic representation, risk taking, hand-eye coordination, fine motor development, and intrinsic motivation.
Science
This week we will incorporate the human body into the science area as well as introducing the pollination/ life cycle of flowers! We will continue to care for our plants and notice the changes that might take place during the week.
~Materials: The children's planters with seeds, "growing window" with green bean and pea seeds, skeleton and images of the body; a wasp hive and pictures of bees and flowers, as well as real flowers; computer will display slow motion videos of plants growing.
~Rationale: We will encourage children to explore the pollination/ life cycle of bees to expand on their prior knowledge and interest. The planters will be accessible to children so that they have the opportunity to take care of their plant (watering) and to observe the changes to it over time. The skeleton and the body pictures will aid the children in discovering what is inside of their bodies.
~Skills: Observation, exploration, scientific inquiry, sequencing, comparison, reasoning, sorting, descriptive language, self-expression, self- awareness, peer interactions, and understanding our bodies.
Math, Manipulatives and Games
~Materials: Legos, inset puzzles, and floor puzzles.
~ Rationale: We will encourage children to build with Legos while following a sequencing process. We will also foster their creative endeavors by encouraging them to build independently and with their classmates.
~Skills: Sequencing, creative building, eye-hand coordination, cooperation, peer interactions, sorting, and finger strength.
Dramatic, Symbolic Play and Blocks/Creative Building
After the paramedics' visit, the children quickly incorporated what they learned from them and merged it into their play in the Doctor's Office. We have added babies to this area to expand on the children's play. The children continue to express their interest in our "Rare Animal Pet Shop."
~Materials: Labeled pictures of medical instruments, stethoscopes, casts, thermometers, doctor's bags, doctor's cot, doctor gowns, signs with step-by-step instructions or what to do when you visit the doctor, real EKGs, baby dolls, carriers, and blankets. In the animal cave: stuffed fish, turtles, frogs, chameleons, snakes, rabbits, and squirrels, fishbowls, aquarium, water dish, fish food, and cloths.
~Rationale: We have added plastic baby dolls to the Doctor's Office to expand on the children's imaginative play and creative expression. This week, we will include first aid supplies that resemble the ones used by the paramedics.
~Skills: Understanding of self and others, communication, language, vocabulary, social interactions, collaboration, application of previous knowledge, symbolic play, and understanding of bodies.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, and boards. Music instruments under the loft.
~Rationale: Based on the children's overwhelming interest in the musical instruments, we will display images of notes, rhythms, musical staffs as well as have the instruments available. The piano will also be available for children to use.
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions; spatial skills, creative building, large motor, imaginative play, creativity, and fine motor; and creative expression through music, imagination, cooperation, sharing.
Language and Literacy
We learned many new medical terms after our visit with the paramedics and during our tour of an ambulance. During large group, we will discuss new words and add them to our class dictionary. Don't forget to send new words to school! The children continue to be excited about adding new words to our classroom dictionary on a daily basis.
~Materials: Special table with a bound dictionary, classroom dictionary, blank papers and alphabetical dividers; books about doctor's visits, our bodies, the environment, spring, plants, bugs, insects and healthy eating; pencils, thin markers, lined paper, envelopes, folded paper, stamp-sized paper, glue sticks, staplers, and tape; and laminated cards with children's photos and names on them.
~Rationale: To expand the children's vocabulary by introducing new words in large group and in small groups and encouraging children to look up unfamiliar words in the bound dictionary.
~Skills: Pre-/ early-literacy skills, building community, communication, symbolic representation, vocabulary expansion, social skills, and imaginative/creative play.
Large Motor
Playground
~Materials: Bikes, playground equipment, swings, shovels, buckets, scoops, hill.
~Rationale: To provide an environment that allows the children to practice large motor skills while building on peer interaction.
~Skills: Cardiovascular endurance, cooperation, balance, coordination, grasping, climbing, jumping, strength, and flexibility.
Gym
~Materials: Jump-the-gap, basketball, rolling slide, hopscotch, pitch-back, ladders, and monkey bars.
~Rationale: We continue to provide new challenges that emphasize jumping and dynamic movement, throwing and catching, and target practice as well as cooperation and turn-taking.
~Skills: Depth-perception, static and dynamic jumping, throwing/catching, hand-eye coordination, visual-perception, hopping on one foot, upper-arm strength, climbing, coordination, core-strength, communication, community building, and cooperation.
Special Interest
We will be meeting in our small groups this week!
Sheila will be continuing a "Building our Aquarium" community project with children from all classrooms.
Thank you for the donations for our spa basket ☺
Question of the Day
We continue to have a daily question for the children. This question highlights concepts, skills and topics discussed in the classroom and/or sparks additional questions. This week we will also be making a thank you card for the paramedics who came to our classroom!
REMINDERS!!
Last PAC meeting of the year: Wednesday, May 2nd, 7-8:30
Lab School Camping Adventure: Saturday May 19th-Sunday, May 20th
Pizza Party: Tuesday, May 22nd, 6-7:30 (Rain date is Wednesday, May 23rd)
Memorial Day- No School, on Monday, May 28th
Last day of the year will be Thursday, May 31st, please plan on attending our classroom celebration of learning this day. Details to come!

Katie

Spring Session 2012- Weekly Plan 4/16-20

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
April 9-13, 2012
Katie and Sharon co-Teaching

Overview and Goals
This week we are expanding our understanding of how to be and stay healthy as individuals. A special visit from a paramedic crew is scheduled for Thursday. Since spring has arrived in Minnesota have been noticing the changes in the landscape here on campus, the students are examining the sprouting and blooming of plants and trees. We will expand the science area to include a place for planting our own seeds. We continue to study our five senses adding the sense of "taste" this week. This has a logical connection to plants and healthy eating! We will continue to promote the children's interest, passion, and joy in creating and expanding our classroom dictionary.
Expressive Arts
~Materials: Easel, paints, thin paint brushes, sharpie markers, paper, colored pencils, markers, oil pastels, staplers, tape, large roll of paper.
~Rationale: Use a variety of art materials and provide opportunities for individual expression and focus on fine lines to create self-portraits. The large roll of paper will be used for body tracing.
~Skills: Creative expression, symbolic representation, risk taking, hand-eye coordination, fine motor development, and intrinsic motivation.
Science
This week we will add the last sense to this area; the sense of taste! We will also begin our exploration of seeds and plants.
~Materials: Variety of seeds, soil ,biodegradable planting cups, sunflower and pea seeds. Snack Stoplight salad. Special table with a wasp hive, pictures of bees and wasps, and a list of differences between bees and wasps (created by the children). Herbs, cotton balls with different smells. Small cups with olives, apples and other small items for tasting.
~Rationale: To come full circle and explore the sense of taste; focusing on words to describe it such as salty, sweet, bitter, etc. To offer children opportunities to see and handle a variety of seeds, and begin to discuss planting and caring for our plants. The students' special interest in bees and wasps continues in the context of helping seeds, plants and flowers to grow.
~Skills: Observation, scientific inquiry, comparison, reasoning, sorting, descriptive language, self-expression, peer interactions, and understanding our bodies.
Math, Manipulatives and Games
~Materials: Construx, step-by-step directions, inset puzzles, and floor puzzles.
~ Rationale: We continue our strong focus on sequencing, number sequencing-ordinal numbers and following a step-by-step plan. We continue to link the development of our understanding of sequencing by using step-by-step directions while planting seeds, building with blocks and cooking snacks
~Skills: Sequencing, creative building, eye-hand coordination, and finger strength.
Dramatic, Symbolic Play and Blocks/Creative Building
The doctor's office continues to be a popular place to cooperate, collaborate and use many of the skills we are focusing in the classroom. . Following the children's interest in taking care of the animals in one of the caves, we have set up a "Rare Animals' Pet Shop."
~Materials: Pictures of the different medical instruments available in our doctor's office along with labels, stethoscopes, casts, thermometers, doctor's bags, doctor's cot, doctor gowns, signs with step-by-step instructions or what to do when you visit the doctor. In the animal cave: stuffed fish, turtles, frogs, chameleons, snakes, rabbits, and squirrels, fishbowls, aquarium, water dish, fish food, and cloths.
~Rationale: We continue to encourage play that incorporates the use of the specific names for the instruments available in the doctor's office. We will also encourage the children to add these words into our dictionary. This week, we will be focusing on allergies and medical emergencies through our field experience with an ambulance and paramedics on Thursday. In the animal cave, we will be focusing on facilitating symbolic/ imaginative play related to animals.
~Skills: Understanding of self and others, communication, language, vocabulary, social interactions, collaboration, symbolic play, understanding of bodies.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, and boards. Music instruments under the loft.
~Rationale: Continue to offer the children opportunities for creative building. The children have shown interest and excitement when playing the musical instruments; we have decided to create a special space for these under the loft in response to the children's curiosity. The musical instruments are available for the children to use and include in the dramatic play scenarios in the back of the classroom as well as to use as a way to explore sound and music.
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions. Spatial skills, creative building, large motor, imaginative play, creativity, and fine motor. Creative expression through music, imagination, cooperation, sharing.
Language and Literacy
The children continue to add words to our dictionary on a daily basis. If you happen to discuss a new word at home and your child seems enthusiastic about it, please send us a note and we will ask your child to add to our dictionary.
~Materials: Special table with a bound dictionary, classroom dictionary, blank papers and alphabetical dividers. Fun and familiar books, pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, folded paper, stamp-sized paper, glue sticks, staplers, and tape. Cards with children's photos and names written on them. Books related to doctor visits, our bodies, spring, plants, and favorites.
~Rationale: Our classroom dictionary continues to offer plenty of opportunities to create community and feelings of confidence and success. The children are busy not only writing new words but also creating illustrations. Encourage children to read and/or look for information related to different seeds, plants and plants' life cycles.
~Skills: Pre-/ early-literacy skills, building community, and symbolic representation, vocabulary expansion, social skills, and imaginative/creative play.
Large Motor
Playground
~Materials: Bikes, playground equipment, swings, shovels, buckets, scoops, hill.
~Rationale: To encourage children to move their bodies freely. Have room to run and exercise.
~Skills: Cardiovascular endurance, balance, coordination, grasping, climbing, jumping, strength, and flexibility.
Gym
~Materials: Jump-the-gap, basketball, rolling slide, hopscotch, pitch-back, ladders, and monkey bars.
~Rationale: After focusing on balance during the last gym set-up, we decided to arrange the equipment to provide new challenges emphasizing jumping and dynamic movement, throwing and catching, and target practice.
~Skills: Depth-perception, static and dynamic jumping, throwing/catching, hand-eye coordination, visual-perception, hopping on one foot, upper-arm strength, climbing, coordination, and core-strength.
Special Interest
The teachers have started to discuss small group topics and configurations. We are hoping to start meeting in our groups next week!
Sheila will begin a community project with children from all classrooms. Three children from our classroom will be joining her on Mondays to work on our school aquarium: Benny, Iris, and Huxley.
Question of the Day
We continue to have a daily question for the children. This question highlights concepts, skills and topics discussed in the classroom and/or sparks additional questions.
REMINDERS
Our Spring Soiree is this Saturday, April 21...
Our classroom basket topic for our this event is SPA: we are in need of lots of donations!!
Last PAC meeting of the year: Wednesday, May 2nd, 7-8:30
Lab School Camping Adventure: Saturday May 19th-Sunday, May 20th
Pizza Party: Tuesday, May 22nd, 6-7:30 (Rain date is Wednesday, May 23rd)
Memorial Day- No School, on Monday, May 28th
Last day of the year will be Thursday, May 31st, please plan on attending our classroom celebration of learning this day. Details to come!

Katie & Sharon

Spring Session 2012- Weekly Plan 4/9-13

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
April 9-13, 2012
Dalia Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
This coming week we will continue to explore our five senses and our bodies; the children are enthusiastically discussing these topics with their classmates and teachers and we will continue to offer plenty of opportunities to deepen their explorations. We will continue to promote the children's interest, passion, and joy in creating and expanding our classroom dictionary. This strong focus on language and literacy is sparking children's interest in letters, reading and writing and are developing the skills to represent our words with illustrations. Our dictionary is strengthening our sense of community as well as helping become experts at describing and explaining words, sounding letters and putting the sounds together to create words!

Expressive Arts
~Materials: Construction paper, oil pastels, markers, crayons, color pencils, glue sticks, staplers, tape, scissors. Easel with thin brushes, colored paints, large construction paper; mirrors for self-portraits.
~Rationale: Use a variety of art materials and provide opportunities for individual expression and with focus on fine lines to create self-portraits.
~Skills: Creative expression, symbolic representation, risk taking, hand-eye coordination, fine motor development, and intrinsic motivation.
Science
We continue to discuss our five senses: this week we will focus on the sense of smell and the sense of hearing.
~Materials: Herbs, cotton balls with different smells, sound canisters, musical instruments, and sound loto. Projector in the back of the classroom. Special table with a wasp hive, pictures of bees and wasps, and a list of differences between bees and wasps (created by the children).
~Rationale: To encourage active exploration of smell and hearing. To offer children hands-on opportunities to understand these two senses, the differences between all senses and their possible uses. The projector continues to offer opportunities to investigate light, reflection and shadows. The children's strong interest in bees and wasps inspired the teachers to create a special space to continue to investigate these insects.
~Skills: Observation, scientific inquiry, comparison, reasoning, sorting, descriptive language, self-expression, peer interactions, investigation of ourselves and exploration of lights and shadows.
Math, Manipulatives and Games
We continue our strong focus on sequencing. Number sequencing-ordinal numbers and following a step-by-step plan. We continue to link the development of our understanding of sequencing by using step-by-step directions while playing in the doctor's office, building with blocks and creating with a new creative building material.
~Materials: Construx, step-by-step directions, inset puzzles, and floor puzzles.
~Rationale: Continue to offer daily opportunities for children to understand sequencing and begin to use ordinal numbers on a regular basis.
~Skills: Sequencing, creative building, eye-hand coordination, and finger strength.
Dramatic, Symbolic Play and Blocks/Creative Building
The doctor's office continues to be a popular place to cooperate, collaborate and use many of the sills we are focusing in the classroom.
~Materials: Pictures of the different instruments available in our doctor's office along with labels, stethoscopes, casts, thermometers, doctor's bags, doctor's cot, doctor gowns, signs with step-by-step instructions or what to do when you visit the doctor. One of our caves will continue to offer opportunities for symbolic play with woodland animals.
~Rationale: This coming week, we will focus on facilitating play that incorporates the use of the specific names for the instruments available in the doctor's office. We will also encourage the children to add these words into our dictionary! We will encourage children to share their experiences when visiting the doctor, hospital, dentist, etc.
Skills: Understanding of self and others, communication, language, vocabulary, social interactions, collaboration, symbolic play, understanding of bodies.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, and boards. Basket with musical instruments.
~Rationale: Continue to offer the children opportunities for creative building. The musical instruments are available as a provocation to include in the dramatic play scenarios in the back of the classroom.
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions. Spatial skills, creative building, large motor, imaginative play.
Language and Literacy
The introduction of our dictionary has been a great success in the classroom. This week we will continue to encourage the children to add their favorite words to it, as well as new words we learn in the different areas of the classroom.
~Materials: Special table with a bound dictionary, classroom dictionary, blank papers and alphabetical dividers. Fun and familiar books, pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, folded paper, stamp-sized paper, glue sticks, staplers, and tape. Cards with children's photos and names written on them. Books related to doctor visits, our bodies, spring and favorites. We are beginning to add books about plants.
~Rationale: Our classroom dictionary continues to offer plenty of opportunities to create community and feelings of confidence and success. The children are busy not only writing new words but also creating illustrations.
~Skills: Pre-/ early-literacy skills, building community, and symbolic representation, vocabulary expansion, social skills, and imaginative/creative play.
Large Motor
Playground
~Materials: Bikes, playground equipment, swings, shovels, buckets, scoops, hill.
~Rationale: To encourage children to move their bodies freely. Have room to run and exercise.
~Skills: Cardiovascular endurance, balance, coordination, grasping, climbing, jumping, strength, and flexibility.
Gym
Materials: Jump-the-gap, basketball, rolling slide, hopscotch, pitch-back, ladders, and monkey bars.
Rationale: After focusing on balance during the last gym set-up, we decided to arrange the equipment to provide new challenges emphasizing jumping and dynamic movement, throwing and catching, and target practice.
Skills: Depth-perception, static and dynamic jumping, throwing/catching, hand-eye coordination, visual-perception, hopping on one foot, upper-arm strength, climbing, coordination, and core-strength.
Special Interest
Woodworking
~Materials: In the playground: Woodworking benches, woodworking tools and pieces of wood.
~Rationale: To encourage children to become aware with using woodworking tools; we are planning on a classroom project in the near future.
~Skills: Hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, strength, familiarity with a variety of tools.
Question of the Day
We continue to have a daily question for the children. This question highlights concepts, skills and topics discussed in the classroom and/or sparks additional questions.

REMINDERS
Upcoming Events
Our Spring Soiree is Saturday, April 21... I hope you are in the midst of arranging for childcare for the children!! I will be taking attendance ☺
Last PAC meeting of the year: Wednesday, May 2nd, 7-8:30
Lab School Camping Adventure: Saturday May 19th-Sunday, May 20th
Pizza Party: Tuesday, May 22nd, 6-7:30 (Rain date is Wednesday, May 23rd)
Memorial Day- No School, on Monday, May 28th

Last day of the year will be Thursday, May 31st, please plan on attending our classroom celebration of learning this day. Details to come!

Dalia

Spring Session 2012- Weekly Plan 3/26-30

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
March 26th-30th, 2012
Dalia Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
Welcome back to school everyone and Happy Spring! I hope that everyone had a relaxing break and you were able to spend time outdoors! We will spend the first days of this session getting used to our new schedule and getting to know our two new student teachers: Katie and Sharon. If you didn't get to meet them at our party and you happen to be at school, please take a moment to introduce yourselves and welcome them to our precious community. Spring offers unique opportunities to explore change and growth and we will take advantage of this throughout the session. Please stay tuned for our spring newsletter to read more details about our big plans for this session!

Expressive Arts
~Materials: Construction paper, markers, crayons, pencils, glue, stapler, tape, scissors. Easel with spring/pastel colored paints and brushes; mirrors and pictures featuring symmetry and patterns for inspiration.
~Rationale: Get inspired with spring and offer opportunities for unique expression.
~Skills: Creative expression, symbolic representation, fine motor, hand-eye coordination, intrinsic motivation, risk taking.

Science
We will begin our session by focusing on our bodies starting with our 5 senses. Sight and touch will be featured in our science area first.
~Materials: Dark glasses, kaleidoscopes, magnifying glasses, sings related to "seeing." Materials with different textures for sorting. Projector in the back of the classroom with a first set of "little, interesting" things.
~Rationale: To encourage active exploration of sight and touch. To offer children hands-on opportunities to understand these two senses. The projector serves as a starting point to begin investigating light, shadows and reflection. We are hoping to spark the children's interest in light and shadows and expand our investigations outdoors pretty soon. The projector also ties nicely to our study of the sense of sight.
~Skills: Observation, scientific inquiry, comparison, reasoning, sorting, descriptive language, self-expression, peer interactions, investigation of ourselves and exploration of lights and shadows.

Math, Manipulatives and Games
Number sequencing and following a step-by-step plan. Linked to doctor play and also linked to construction with hollow blocks, unit blocks and mobilos.
~Rationale: Support children's understanding of the importance of sequences, planning and step-by-step directions; how to start? What comes next? Why is it important to have a step-by-step plan? We will support this concept in the doctor's office as well.
~Skills: Sequencing, creative building, eye-hand coordination, and finger strength.

Dramatic, Symbolic Play and Blocks
We are off to see the doctor! We are setting up a doctor's office in the back of the classroom with opportunities to "play," as well to explore different body parts, practice step-by-step directions, writing our names, explaining what hurts, etc.
~Materials: Stethoscopes, casts, thermometers, doctor's bags, , doctor's cot, doctor gowns, signs with step-by-step instructions or what to do when you visit the doctor. One of our caves will continue to offer opportunities for symbolic play with woodland animals.
~Rationale: We have had a tough winter! Many children have been out sick and this has been a regular discussion topic in our classroom during our large groups. We are hoping to connect this theme to our umbrella topic: "Healthy Living," and focus children's explorations of themselves and those around them.
Skills: Understanding of self and others, communication, language, vocabulary, social interactions, collaboration, symbolic play, understanding of bodies.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, and boards.
~Rationale: Continue to offer the children opportunities for creative building.
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions. Spatial skills, creative building, large motor, imaginative play.

Language and Literacy
This session we will encourage the children to cooperate to create a classroom dictionary. We will start with the children's names and continue to add until the end of the session.
~Materials: Binder with blank papers and divided by letters of the alphabet. Fun and familiar books, pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, folded paper, stamp-sized paper, glue sticks, staplers, and tape. Cards with children's photos and names written on them. Books related to doctor visits, our bodies, spring and favorites. Computer.
~Rationale: To create opportunities to collaborate while creating our own classroom dictionary. To expand our vocabulary, by keeping track of new words we learn as well as being able to see commonly used words and names. To offer opportunities to practice recognizing letters, writing letters and beginning to putting sounds together to create words. We are hoping to start using the computer to take dictation of children's stories, plots and dramatic play scenarios.
~Skills: Pre-/ early-literacy skills, building community, and symbolic representation, vocabulary expansion, social skills, and imaginative/creative play.

Large Motor
Playground
~Materials: Bikes, playground equipment, swings, shovels, buckets, scoops, hill.
~Rationale: To encourage children to move their bodies freely. Have room to run and exercise.
~Skills: Cardiovascular endurance, balance, coordination, grasping, climbing, jumping, strength, and flexibility.
Gym
Materials: Jump-the-gap, basketball, rolling slide, hopscotch, pitch-back, ladders, and monkey bars.
Rationale: After focusing on balance during the last gym set-up, we decided to arrange the equipment to provide new challenges emphasizing jumping and dynamic movement, throwing and catching, and target practice.
Skills: Depth-perception, static and dynamic jumping, throwing/catching, hand-eye coordination, visual-perception, hopping on one foot, upper-arm strength, climbing, coordination, and core-strength.

Special Interest
Question of the Day: One of the tables in the classroom will be set up with a "Question of the Day." Children will be invited to check it out upon arrival to school. The question of the day will usually highlight a topic or skill we are discussing or working on in the classroom.

REMINDERS
Our Spring Soiree is Saturday, April 21... I hope you are in the midst of arranging for childcare for the children!! I will be taking attendance ☺

See you all on Monday!
Dalia

Winter Session 2012- Weekly Plan 2/27-3/9

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
February 27th -March 9th, 2012
Dalia Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
Our classroom is busy exploring symmetry and color, writing letters and getting ready for our end of the session party and believe or not, we continue to be enthusiastic about our investigations on birds! This week and next, we will continue to talk about the end of the session approaching and saying good-bye to Kate! We will reassure the children that Marie and Dalia will be in the classroom until the end of the year. We will also introduce the names or our new two student teachers joining us after spring break: Katie and Sharon.

Expressive Arts
~Materials: Collage materials (puff balls, feathers, yarn, pipe cleaners, cardboard tubes), markers, crayons, glue, and stapler. Materials for papier-mâché. Crayon melting-warming trays, paper, crayon shavings. Side-by-side easels with red, yellow and blue tempera paint.
~Rationale: We are offering multiple ways and media for creative expression and symbolic representation. The crayon melting offers opportunities not only to create freely but also to support children's exploration of color mixing and melting.
~Skills: Creative expression, supporting intrinsic motivation, fine motor strength/coordination, prediction/hypothesizing, opportunities for conversations and discussions.

Science
~Materials: Bird feeder, colored discs and transparent tangrams, pipettes and color trays, colored water for mixing. "Tornado" bottles, cards for the children to write their own color recipes'. Light table. Stuffed pheasant, bird and feather matching game, colorful feathers from a variety of familiar birds.
~Rationale: We continue to investigate color; primary and secondary colors. The light table offers special light/translucent effects to the see-through materials. We also continue to deepen our investigations of birds as we prepare to use what we have been discussing about and put it altogether.
~Skills: Reasoning, grouping, recalling prior knowledge, prediction / hypothesizing, descriptive language, peer interactions. To spark questions about color mixing.

Math, Manipulatives and Games
We continue to focus on symmetry and line of symmetry.
~Materials: Cards with symmetrical letters and their line of symmetry. Puzzles featuring symmetry, tangrams and trays, magnet boards with magnetic shapes, mirrors, folded paper and scissors, matching games, legos and lego bases, pop-oids.
~Rationale: Understanding and exploration of symmetry. Providing access to a variety of materials that build awareness of symmetry allows children to construct their own knowledge of the concept through tactile exploration and play. Continue to offer opportunities for creative building and the support of fine motor skills.
~Skills: Symmetry, observation, seriation, one-to-one correspondence, analyzing and synthesizing, creative building, fine motor strength and hand-eye coordination.

Dramatic, Symbolic Play and Blocks/Creative Building
~Materials: Woodland plastic animals, forest animals, birds stuffed animals, tree cuttings, logs, fabric, pillows, books about animals and hibernation. Kitchen set and utensils. Fabric to use as animal costumes. Cd player and cd of various bird sounds. ~Rationale: The children continue to explore "bird" scenarios via dramatic and symbolic play. The loft area features materials to support children's discussions and understanding of this topic. The addition of the bird focus in the creative art area will provide opportunities for children to expand their play scenarios through self-expression, creative expression, imagination and creativity.
~Skills: Role-play, symbolic representation, social interactions, storytelling, collaboration, imaginative / creative play.
Blocks
~Materials: Masking tape, hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, wood boards, big fabric pieces, pillows and woodland stuffed animals, including the addition of "prey" animals (fish, rodents, and more snakes).
~Rationale: We are adding masking tape to serve as the "line of symmetry." Continue to offer the children opportunities for creative building. Last week we didn't have much time to use the big hollow blocks. This week we are hoping to use them to enhance the children's understanding of symmetry and offer them one more hands-on opportunity to use this concept during play. We continue to offer opportunities to extend/create dramatic play scenarios with the addition of soft materials. The materials also provide opportunities for social play and the practice of a variety of social skills (problem solving, sharing, dealing with space, working together, collaboration, role play, etc.).
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions. Spatial skills, creative building, large motor, imaginative play, symmetry

Language and Literacy
~Materials: Fun and familiar books, pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, folded paper, stamp-sized paper, glue sticks, staplers, tape, symmetry stencils. Cards with children's photos and names written on them. Writing prompts featuring basic words commonly used in letters and cards (to, from, etc.) and an envelope modeling the way to place a stamp and address. A mailbox marked with the children's name and pictures has also been added to the writing center.
~Rationale: Continue to foster the children's interest in writing letters and invitations. We continue to offer a variety of materials that facilitate letter writing and build on the children's awareness of the postal system.
~Skills: Pre-/ early-literacy skills, building community, and symbolic representation, strengthening the home-to-school connection, social skills, and imaginative/creative play

Large Motor
~Materials: Rope swing, high balance beam, soccer balls and net.
~Skills: Upper and lower body strength and coordination, core strength, grasping, propulsion skills, kicking, depth perception, waiting for a turn, balance, climbing, and high risk taking.
~We continue to explore our half melted and half icy playground. Hopefully this week we will have more snow and will be able to have a few more sledding opportunities as well as building with snow! Shovels, scoops, sleds, buckets and playground structure are available.

Snack
Monday: Rice cakes and grapefruit
Wednesday: Pretzels and frozen peas
Thursday: Oven fries
Next Week
Monday: Corn pasta and milk
Wednesday: Edamame and pretzels
Thursday: Party snack!

REMINDERS
END OF THE SESSION PARTY; THURSDAY, MARCH 8TH, 2-3:15
Please let us know how many of you are coming!!
Thank you,
Dalia

Winter Session 2012- Weekly Plan 13-17/2

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
February 13th - 17th, 2012
Marie Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
The children continue to be excited and interested in exploring raptors and other species of birds. Their interest has taken on a strong creative focus; \this week many of the children made bird wings and decorated them with feathers, cotton balls, and other collage materials. Creating those costumes inspired many students to engage in dramatic play scenarios that involved birds - we built nests, measured our wingspans, hatched eggs, and took our wings into the gym where the children were able to "fly" to their hearts' content! Next week we plan to expand on this recent burst of creativity and symbolic play by providing additional art materials for the children to explore and manipulate as they create beaks, tail feathers and other props that will support and extend their play. Along with our focus on birds we are supporting the children's interest in color mixing by embedding opportunities for them to experiment with color in various parts of the classroom. We're looking forward to another week full of exploration, experimentation, and wonderful, creative play!

Expressive Arts
~Materials: Paper towels, pipettes, and colored water for mixing. Collage materials (puff balls, feathers, yarn, pipe cleaners, cardboard tubes), markers, crayons, glue, and stapler.
~Rationale: Offer novel opportunities for creative expression and symbolic representation by adding materials that support the creation of bird props. Continue to support children's explorations of, and experimentation with, color mixing. ~Skills: Creative expression, sensory input, supporting intrinsic motivation, fine motor strength/coordination, prediction/hypothesizing.
Sensory Materials
~Materials: We have replaced the sensory table this week with two easels. Both easels are set up with paint in primary colors (red, yellow, and blue) and thick brushes. ~Rationale: To support the children's experiments with color and to allow them to continue their explorations with color mixing in a novel environment. Additionally, having two easels will allow the children to explore the paint and color-mixing with the opportunity for peer collaboration and communication; the easels are set up side-by-side to provide such opportunities.
~Skills: Artistic expression, prediction/hypothesizing, and social skills.
Science
~Materials: Colored discs and transparent tangrams, pipettes and color trays, colored water for mixing. "Color riddles" and other prompts to support exploration. Stuffed pheasant, bird and feather matching game, colorful feathers from a variety of familiar birds.
~Rationale: As our exploration on birds takes on a more creative focus, our science center has evolved to reflect the children's growing interest in exploring the properties of color and light. ~Skills: Reasoning, grouping, recalling prior knowledge, prediction / hypothesizing, descriptive language, peer interactions.

Math, Manipulatives and Games
We have added new materials to the math and manipulatives cave in order to provide opportunities for the students to explore the concept of symmetry. ~Materials: Butterfly puzzles, mirrors, matching games, legos and lego bases. We continue to provide materials for seriation exploration as well: Montessori cylinders, nesting cups, and puzzles featuring seriation concepts, animals in general and birds in particular in both inset and interlocking versions.
~Rationale: Symmetry is a fundamental geometry concept that is accessible to preschool-aged children and is a precursor to more advanced mathematical comprehension. Providing access to a variety of materials that build awareness of symmetry allows children to construct their own knowledge of the concept through tactile exploration and play.
~Skills: Symmetry, observation, seriation, one-to-one correspondence, analyzing and synthesizing, fine motor strength.

Dramatic, Symbolic Play and Blocks/Creative Building
~Materials: Woodland plastic animals, forest animals, birds stuffed animals, tree cuttings, logs, fabric, pillows, books about animals and hibernation. Kitchen set and utensils. Fabric to use as animal costumes. Cd player and cd of various bird sounds. ~Rationale: The children continue to explore "bird" scenarios via dramatic and symbolic play. The loft area features materials to support children's discussions and understanding of this topic. The addition of the bird focus in the creative art area will provide opportunities for children to expand their play scenarios through self-expression, creative expression, imagination and creativity.
~Skills: Role-play, symbolic representation, social interactions, storytelling, collaboration, imaginative / creative play.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, wood boards, big fabric pieces, pillows and woodland stuffed animals, including the addition of "prey" animals (fish, rodents, and more snakes).
~Rationale: Continue to offer the children opportunities for creative building. Over the last few weeks many of the children became very involved in building "nests" out of the blocks and creating accompanying play scenarios that extended and enriched their interactions with the materials and one another. This week we will continue to offer opportunities to extend/create dramatic play scenarios with the addition of soft materials. The materials also provide opportunities for social play and the practice of a variety of social skills (problem solving, sharing, dealing with space, working together, collaboration, role play, etc.).
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions. Spatial skills, creative building, large motor, imaginative play.

Language and Literacy
~Materials: Fun and familiar books, pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, folded paper, stamp-sized paper, glue sticks, staplers, tape, symmetry stencils. Cards with children's photos and names written on them. Writing prompts featuring basic words commonly used in letters and cards (to, from, etc.) and an envelope modeling the way to place a stamp and address. A mailbox marked with the children's name and pictures has also been added to the writing center.
~Rationale: To expand on the children's interest in writing letters and cards to Dalia and their classmates who have been ill, we will offer a variety of materials that facilitate letter writing and build on the children's awareness of the postal system.
~Skills: Pre-/ early-literacy skills, building community, and symbolic representation, strengthening the home-to-school connection, social skills, and imaginative/creative play

Large Motor
~Materials: The gym set up continues to feature an obstacle course consisting of opportunities for children to pedal bikes, jump over low hurdles, walk on a variety of uneven surfaces, and climb in, over and around obstacles!
~Skills: Coordination, jumping, depth perception and turn taking, upper and lower body and core strength, climbing up and down, spatial recognition.
~Our time in the playground will be dedicated to unstructured and structured large motor activities as well as fostering the children's exploration of the natural world. Last week several of the children became very involved in building a fort from the branches trimmed and donated to us by the University's grounds crew! We will continue to provide children with the opportunity to participate in that highly motivating activity!

Snack
Monday: Cucumbers & crackers Wednesday: Carrots & rice cakes
Thursday: Cheerios & milk

REMINDERS
~Dalia will be gone this week. She'll be back in our classroom on Monday, February 20th.

Winter Session 2012- Weekly Plan 1/30-2/10

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
January 30th - February 3rd, 2012
Marie Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
Last week the children began to develop rich play scenarios stemming from their various, multiple experiences learning about birds. As the children built "nests", defended their "eggs", and "hatched" chicks, teachers were delighted to see so much of their knowledge manifesting itself through their dramatic play. This week we will continue to support the children's explorations and investigations into the world of birds by providing them with opportunities to compare and contrast different features of birds, paying special attention to the distinguishing features of raptors (beaks, talons, and superior eyesight!). In response to the children's excitement about the recent snowy weather will also being to explore the physical properties of snow and ice by bringing those materials into the science and sensory centers. We are looking forward to another active week!

Expressive Arts
~Materials: Easel, brushes, blue and white paint with thick brushes, brown paint with thin brushes, and paper. Watercolor paints, thin brushes, watercolor paper, and constructions paper.
~Rationale: Offer further opportunities for creative expression and symbolic representation by adding a new medium. Support children's explorations of, and experimentation with, color mixing. ~Skills: Self-expression, fine motor, symbolic representation, and creative expression, and sensory input.

Sensory Materials
~Materials: Snow, molding materials, food coloring, spray bottles, scoops, and containers.
~Rationale: To bring the children's experiences outdoors into the classroom by learning about the properties of snow and ice through play. The materials at the sensory table will also support the experiments being conducted with the new materials in the science center. Later in the week we will add food coloring and spray bottles in order to allow the children to continue their explorations with color mixing in a novel environment.
~Skills: Creative expression, sensory input, knowledge of physical properties, and symbolic representation.

Science We continue our exploration of birds, but have shifted our focus from nests and habitats to the differences between raptors and other types of birds. Our visit to the Raptor Center sparked an interest in birds' beaks and talons, and the way they use those tools to procure food. In addition to our bird focus, we have introduced an opportunity for children to extend their explorations of the physical properties of snow and ice.
~Materials: Stuffed pheasant, laminated pictures of birds beaks and talons, measuring tools, magnifying glasses. A wingspan chart depicting the wingspans of familiar birds. Blocks of ice, warming trays, table salt, rock salt.
~Rationale: Continue to explore birds and the distinguishing features of raptors. Increase students' awareness of the physical properties of snow and ice. Give the children the opportunity use their knowledge, memory and observation skills as we ask them to compare the beaks, bills, talons and wingspans of various birds. ~Skills: Scientific inquiry, observation, generalizing, reasoning, grouping, knowledge of the natural world, knowledge of the physical properties of ice and snow, descriptive language, heuristic language, informative language, symbolic representation, peer interactions.

Math, Manipulatives and Games
We continue our focus on the concepts of seriation, rote counting, and one-to-one correspondence. ~Materials: Legos and lego bases, Montessori cylinders, nesting cups, puzzles featuring winter and seriation concepts, animals in general and birds in particular in both inset and interlocking versions.
~Rationale: Seriation skills support children's understand of arranging objects (and concepts, later on) according to a specific dimension (size, width, weight, what happened first, next and last). Seriation skills are related to more complex math concepts, such as ordination or placing numbers in the correct order (for example, 1,2,3). Seriation also helps develop higher-order thinking and problem solving skills such as arranging smallest to largest. The seriation concepts being explored in this area dovetail nicely with the categorizing and comparing going on in the science center.
~Skills: Seriation, rote counting, rational counting, one-to-one correspondence, whole and part relationships, analyzing and synthesizing, fine motor strength.

Dramatic, Symbolic Play and Blocks/Creative Building
~Materials: Woodland plastic animals, forest animals, birds stuffed animals, tree cuttings, logs, fabric, pillows, books about animals and hibernation. Kitchen set and utensils. Construction tools and hats. Fabric to use as animal costumes. Cd player and cd of various bird sounds. Triangular construction paper, feathers, scissors, and glue.
~Rationale: We continue to explore hibernation and winter survival. The dramatic and symbolic play areas continue to feature materials to support children's discussions and understanding of this topic. The addition of the art materials into the dramatic play area will provide further opportunities for self-expression, creative expression, imagination and creativity.
~Skills: Role-play, symbolic representation, social interactions, storytelling, problem solving, and sharing.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, wood boards, big fabric pieces, pillows and woodland stuffed animals.
~Rationale: Continue to offer the children opportunities for creative building. Last week many of the children became very involved in building "nests" out of the blocks and creating accompanying play scenarios that extended and enriched their interactions with the materials and one another. This week we will continue to offer opportunities to extend/create dramatic play scenarios with the addition of soft materials. The materials also provide opportunities for social play and the practice of a variety of social skills (problem solving, sharing, dealing with space, working together, discussing).
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions. Spatial skills, creative building, large motor, strength, and social skills.

Language and Literacy
~Materials: Books related to topics discussed in the classroom (hibernating, birds, snow and snowy weather, etc.), fun and familiar books, pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, glue sticks, staplers, tape, clipboards. Cards with children's photos and names written on them. Writing prompts featuring basic words commonly used in letters and cards (to, from, etc.).
~Rationale: To continue to build community, we will offer the children hands-on opportunities to write their own and their classmates' names. Nest week we will re-introduce the mailboxes in order to encourage the exchange of messages within the classroom. ~Skills: Letter recognition and use, fine motor, pre-/ early-literacy skills, building community, encourage friendships and written communication.
Large Motor
~Materials: The new gym set up features an obstacle course consisting of opportunities for children to pedal bikes, jump over low hurdles, walk on a variety of uneven surfaces, and climb in, over and around obstacles! ~Skills: Coordination, jumping, depth perception and turn taking, upper and lower body and core strength, climbing up and down, spatial recognition.
~Our time in the playground will be dedicated to unstructured and structured large motor activities as well as fostering the children's exploration of the natural world. Last week we finally had enough snow to go sledding! We will continue to provide children with the opportunity to participate in that highly motivating activity!

Music and Movement/Large Group
~Rhythm and patterned clapping songs. ~Tools used for measurement. ~Card and letter writing and cards for Marais.

REMINDERS
~Dalia will be gone on Monday, January 30. She will be back in class on Wednesday
~At large group on Monday Marie will be telling the children that Marais is sick and will not be a school until she is feeling better. We are not sharing the details of Marais' illness with the children, but will instead be concentrating on things we can do in our classroom to let her know that we care about her and are thinking of her while she is not at school (writing cards, etc.).

Marie

Winter Session 2012- Weekly Plan 1/18-1/27

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
January 18th-27th, 2012
Dalia Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
We will spend the next week and a half immersed in fieldwork related to "Birds!" Since the end of the fall session, and beginning of this one, we have been setting up the stage for the intense work we will be busy with starting this coming week. The children's homework and our daily discussions related to this topic have brought interesting questions and we are planning on sharing and discussing our thoughts about these. Art endeavors and science investigations will go hand in hand and support each other.

Expressive Arts
~Materials: Easel, brushes, blue and white paint with thick brushes, brown paint with thin brushes, and paper. Clay, clay utensils, dirt, hay, and natural materials found outdoors.
~Rationale: Offer opportunities for creative expression and symbolic representation. To support children' exploration of birds' nests by building with clay and natural materials.
~Skills: Self-expression, fine motor, symbolic representation, and creative expression.
We will add watercolors next week to begin becoming aware of color mixing, and light.

Sensory Materials
~Materials: Small and big rocks, small construction trucks, scoops, containers.
~Rationale: Mirror the outdoors' construction site.
~Skills: Creative expression, sensory input, and symbolic representation.

Science
We continue to focus our attention on animal life, focusing on "birds." Our two field trips will add to our discussions and spark new topics of conversation, as well as give us hand-on (eyes-on) opportunities. We will also start discussing other animals that are seen in winter (sometimes we only notice their tracks left on the snow).
~Materials: Stuffed crow and pheasant, feathers, nests, magnifying glasses, animal tracks. Fish. Laminated picture of animal possible environments and homes and an assortment of animal pictures. We will add photos taken from our field trips.
~Rationale: Continue to explore birds and begin to become aware of other animals found in our environment during the winter months; how do they survive and where can we find them. Give the children the opportunity to use their knowledge, memory and noticing skills as we ask them to place photos of animals in their appropriate environments.
~Skills: Scientific inquiry, observation, generalizing, making use of appropriate sources of information, reasoning, grouping, conceptual knowledge-knowledge of the natural world, descriptive language, heuristic language, informative language, symbolic representation, peer interactions.

Math, Manipulatives and Games
These next couple of weeks we will focus on the concept of seriation. We have also started to pay attention to rote counting and rational counting.
~Materials: Button mosaics, Montessori cylinders, nesting cups, puzzles featuring winter, animals in general and birds in particular in both inset and interlocking versions. Snow bingo.
~Rationale: Seriation skills support children's understand of arranging objects (and concepts, later on) according to a specific dimension (size, width, weight, what happened first, next and last). Seriation skills are related to more complex math concepts, such as ordination or placing numbers in the correct order (for example, 1,2,3). Seriation also helps develop higher-order thinking and problem solving skills such as arranging smallest to largest.
~Skills: Seriation, rote counting, rational counting, one-to-one correspondence, whole and part relationships, analyzing and synthesizing, games with rules, and cooperation.

Dramatic, Symbolic Play and Blocks/Creative Building
~Materials: Woodland plastic animals, forest animals, birds stuffed animals, tree cuttings, logs, fabric, pillows, books about animals and hibernation. Kitchen set and utensils. Construction tools and hats. Fabric to use as animal costumes.
~Rationale: We continue to explore hibernation and winter survival. The dramatic and symbolic play areas continue to feature materials to support children's discussions and understanding of this topic. Provide opportunities for self-expression, creative expression, imagination and creativity. Opportunity for the children to replicate what there are seeing outdoors (in the construction site right across from our school).
~Skills: Role-play, symbolic representation, social interactions, discussions and conversations related to animals and their habitats as well as yearly cycles, problem solving, and sharing.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, wood boards, and big fabric pieces.
~Rationale: Offer the children opportunities for creative building. Opportunities to enhance dramatic play scenarios or create dramatic play scenarios. Opportunities for social play and practice a variety of social skills (problem solving, sharing, dealing with space, working together, discussing).
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions. Spatial skills, creative building, large motor, strength, and social skills.

Language and Literacy
~Materials: Books related to topics discussed in the classroom, fun and old favorite books, pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, glue sticks, staplers, tape, clipboards. Cards with children's photos and names written on them. Birds' stamps and stamp pads...
~Rationale: To continue to build community, we will offer the children hands-on opportunities to notice and/or copy, write their own and their classmates' names. We will re-introduce the mailboxes during the following week, and encourage friendship messages within the classroom. Stamps will add a touch to children's notes, encourage children to expand on the birds' pictures.
~Skills: Letter recognition and use, fine motor, descriptive and creative writing, dictation, building community, encourage friendships and written communication. Fine motor strength.

Large Motor
~Materials: The gym set up displays the climbing/jumping wall, A-frame, metal bridge, and jumping station, rolling slide, and pedalo.
~Skills: Coordination, jumping, depth perception and turn taking, upper and lower body and core strength, climbing up and down.
Elizabeth's and our team will make some modifications on Thursday. I will let you know what changes we decided on.
~Our time in the playground will be dedicated to unstructured and structured large motor activities as well as deepen children's interest on science related explorations. We have been lucky to be able to use shovels, construction cars and tricycles in the past weeks. If we have snow, we will take advantage of it and finally use our sleds!

Music and Movement/Large Group
~Songs about birds. How do birds move; different birds move differently and make different sounds.

REMINDERS
~Field trip to the Bell Museum on Wednesday, January 18th.
~Field trip to the Raptor Center on Wednesday, January 25th.
WE ASK YOU THAT YOU PLEASE HAVE THE CHILDREN AT THE LAB SCHOOL AT 12:30! Details for each field trip will be sent the day before. Please make sure that you check your emails!

GYM JAM!! Friday, January 20, 6:30-8:30. Don't miss this fun winter event for the whole school, and invite your friends and neighbors to join you!!

Dalia



Winter Session 2012- Weekly Plan 1/3-1/13

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Weekly Plan for Dalia's Class
January 3rd-6th, 2012
Dalia Lead Teaching

Overview and Goals
Happy New Year and Welcome back to school everyone! The first couple of weeks back at school will be a period of readjustment. I am hoping that it won't take long for all of us to settle back into our routines. The teachers will be supporting children's readjustment and re-acquaintance with each other. The children know Kate; and Marie has been around, so I believe that this will ease the children's transition back to school. Our classroom reveals changes that state the teachers' intentions for this session. The science area has moved and is strategically located right at the entrance to our classroom; science will guide many of our big topics during this session. We have made sure to provide lots of opportunities for cooperation and interactions. We also have incorporated a variety of means for self-expression through different media and the children will be able to communicate using multiple "languages."

Expressive Arts
The easel is back!
~Materials: Easel, brushes, paint, paper.
~Rationale: Offer opportunities for creative expression and symbolic representation.
~Skills: Self-expression, fine motor, symbolic representation, creative expression.
Winter collage
~Materials: A variety of special and appealing materials from our art closet that makes us think of winter, glue, scissors, tape.
~Rationale: Offer the children opportunities to "create winter."
~Skills: Self-expression, fine motor.
Clay
~Materials: Clay, clay utensils.
~Rationale: Offer one more media for self-expression and creative expression. We will start this session by getting re-acquainted with how it feels and smells, how to work with it and its endless possibilities for creative expression.
~Skills: Fine motor, strength, creative expression.
Sensory Materials
~Materials: Snow table, snow, small shovels, and small molding containers.
~Rationale: Mirror the outdoors. Offer the children a "warmer" nook to experiment with snow.
~Skills: Creative expression, sensory input.
Science
We will focus our attention on animal life, focusing with "birds." We will discuss winter survival "tactics" and adaptations animals may have during this season. Last session we talked about migration and how many birds need to leave the cold winter. During this session, we will concentrate on birds that don't migrate. Our bird feeder will offer opportunities to investigate birds' behavior first-hand and tie nicely with our winter homework. We will continue to draw children's attention to the variety of birds that visit our playground. To expand on other kinds of birds, we are planning a field trip to The Bell Museum and a possible visit to The Raptor Center at the University of Minnesota- St. Paul Campus. More details to come.
~Materials: Stuffed crow and pheasant, feathers, nests, magnifying glasses, sorting cards. Fish.
~Rationale: Create community awareness of birds, different types; what makes them special and unique.
~Skills: Scientific inquiry, observation, generalizing, making use of appropriate sources of information, reasoning, grouping, conceptual knowledge-knowledge of the natural world, descriptive language, heuristic language, informative language, symbolic representation, peer interactions.
The death of our tadpole will provide us with the opportunity to discuss animal life cycles.
Math, Manipulative and Game
We will start this session by picking up where we left off before winter break: emphasizing the concept of patterning.
Patterning and Puzzles.
~Materials: Button mosaics, lacing beads, puzzles featuring winter, animals in general and birds in particular in both inset and interlocking versions.
~Rationale: During the previous session, we exposed the children to concepts such as sorting, matching, and categorizing. Knowledge of these concepts is necessary for creating patterns, a concept we introduced the children to, and will now continue, only we will offer opportunities to deepen the children's understanding by bringing this concept to our everyday activities. Patterning is an important pre-academic concept and patterns can be found all around us. Life cycles, days of the week, and schedules, are patterns. These "simple" things at first sight are going to prepare the children for later mathematical, algebraic and more complicated concepts. By offering open-ended materials (where children can create their own patterns freely) and structured activities (during large group or when playing structured games) we will strengthen children's understanding of what patterning means in everyday life and we will be giving them a solid foundation for years to come. Puzzles will also be offered in order to support the building of concept knowledge, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships.
~Skills: Patterning, concept knowledge, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships.
Dramatic, Symbolic Play
~Materials: Woodland plastic animals, forest animals, birds stuffed animals, tree cuttings, logs, fabric, pillows, books about animals and hibernation. Kitchen set and utensils. Construction tools. Fabric to use as animal costumes.
~Rationale: We will continue to explore hibernation and winter survival. The dramatic and symbolic play areas are designed to support children's discussions and to offer opportunities to enhance their understanding of this topic. Provide opportunities for self-expression, creative expression, imagination and creativity.
~Skills: Role-play, symbolic representation, social interactions, discussions and conversations related to animals and their habitats as well as yearly cycles, problem solving, and sharing.
Blocks
~Materials: Hollow blocks, unit blocks, ramps, wood boards, and big fabric pieces.
~Rationale: Offer the children opportunities for creative building. Opportunities to enhance dramatic play scenarios or create dramatic play scenarios. Opportunities for social play and practice a variety of social skills (problem solving, sharing, dealing with space, working together, discussing).
~Skills: Mathematical concepts such as symmetry, dimensions and fractions. Spatial skills, creative building, large motor, strength, and social skills.
Language and Literacy
We have made sure to incorporate opportunities for language and literacy in all areas of the classroom. We have book selections scattered in strategic places in the classroom such as the dramatic and symbolic play areas, science and writing area.
~Materials: Books related to topics discussed in the classroom, fun and old favorite books, pencils, thin markers, paper, envelopes, glue sticks, staplers, tape, clipboards.
~Rationale: We are hoping to encourage children to continue to add to their personal journals; writings, drawings and notes taken by teachers will be added to these.
~Skills: Letter recognition and use, fine motor, descriptive and creative writing, dictation.
Large Motor
~The gym set up displays our basic equipment. We will arrange and use the same equipment we had before break after the first week of school. The climbing wall supporting coordination, jumping, depth perception and turn taking. The monkey bars offering opportunities for upper and lower body strength and coordination as well as depth perception when crossed on the top. A-frames and crossing metal bridge to enhance depth perception, coordination, climbing up and down. The Rolling slide to support coordination, core strength and joy!
~Our time in the playground will be dedicated to unstructured and structured large motor activities as well as deepen children's interest on science related explorations.
Music and Movement/Large Group
~Getting reacquainted.
~Talk about winter break and the changes around us.
~Discuss our new schedule; starting in the playground.

Looking forward to a wonderful session!

Dalia



Fall Session 2010- Weekly Plan 11/21-12/5

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Weekly Plan-Dalia's Class
November 21st-December 5th, 2011
Kristi Lead Teaching (Nov 21st-22rd)
Dalia Lead Teaching (Nov 28th-Dec 5th)

Overview


This week we will continue to focus on hibernation and migration. The children have been exploring animal skins, and offering ideas about how animals keep warm during the winter during our large group discussions. They will have the opportunity to investigate these topics further in the symbolic play and science areas in the classroom. Children will continue to create patterns with materials and sounds and the teachers will continue to draw their attention to patterns in everyday aspects of their lives. The Trees and Music small groups have wrapped up, and the Art group will be ending on Monday as they decorate their paper Mache eggs.

Expressive Arts


-Materials: Clay and clay shaping tools. Colored construction paper, colored pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, tape, staplers, and hole punchers.
-Rationale: Provide opportunities for creative expression with a modeling material. To provide materials to inspire children's creative expression and explore with a variety of media. 

-Skills: Self-expression, creative risk-taking, fine motor strength and development.

Science
-Materials: Pictures of migrating bird flocks, hibernating animals, animal skins, and a globe for tracking migration. Bird watching station with pictures of birds that usually approach our window. A variety of fall gourds for examination and comparison to apples. Magnifying glasses and baskets/containers for independent sorting. A balance scale for children to weigh items and compare (i.e. how many crabapples to an apple or a gourd). An analog scale to quantify weights. Clipboards and pencils.
-Rationale: To spark children's ideas and discussions regarding hibernation and migration. To encourage children to notice our surroundings and support their intrinsic curiosity about the world around them. To foster children's observation of changes in nature, comparison. To encourage literacy and recording abilities.
-Skills: Observation, inquiry, symbolic representation, identification, comparison, fine-motor, hypothesizing, reasoning about events, measuring, prediction.

Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: Pegs and peg boards, inset puzzles emphasizing people and animals, interlocking puzzles reflecting fruits, vegetables and gardens. Beautiful gems and ribbons. 

-Rationale: This week we will continue our exploration of patterning to include not only materials, but sounds as well. Children will be encouraged to use pegs to create patterns on pegboards. Gems and ribbons of different colors on the light table are also available to create patterns. They will continue to have opportunities for measuring and ordering skills as they compare weights of different apples, gourds, and other fall items. 
-Skills: Patterning, measuring (weighing), sorting, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships, ordering, fine motor development, creative expression, measurement, prediction.

Language and Literacy


-Materials: A variety of writing materials, paper, and envelopes continue to be available. Special signs showing children how to start letters are posted in this area. Mailboxes with children's photos. Our library has a wide variety of books about animals, fall, and families. The loft holds a variety of books related to trees, leaves, seeds, apples, and pumpkins. These books will gradually be traded out with books relating to hibernation and migration

-Rationale: To provide children with many opportunities to enjoy the spoken and written world. Integrate our topics of trees, apples and community into literacy activities and encourage symbolic representation. Foster symbolic representation as children pretend to write letters, stamp them, and mail them.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control.

Blocks


-Materials: Logs, sticks, cross-sections tree trunk discs, and small wooden pieces. Hollow blocks and unit blocks, small wooden cars, wooden trains.
-Rationale: To support children's creative and problem solving abilities, develop awareness of geometry and allow for opportunities for sharing, turn taking, and social interactions. To support our exploration of trees inside the classroom, and encourage children to incorporate tree elements into their dramatic play.
-Skills: Construction skills, dramatic play, symbolic representation, problem solving, cooperation.

Dramatic Play

-Materials: Kitchen cabinet with dishes and dining table with chairs. The loft now has a tree created by The Tree Investigators' small group. Soft pillows and stuffed forest animals are located in the upper and lower loft. Animal costumes; bears and birds to enhance the forest and hibernation topics. Real wooden pieces, discs, and sticks are available in the dramatic play area in order for the children to be able to act out and build animal homes. The animal cave/hibernation cave houses sticks, logs, natural fabrics and woodland plastic animals for the children to create habitats for different kinds of animals.
-Rationale: To encourage social interactions. To continue to foster an interest in trees, forests, animals, their homes and hibernation. To support children's understanding of the changes taking place outdoors. The cave provides a cozy close place that promotes small group interaction, and discussions about forest animals, habitats and hibernation. To continue to encourage children's expression of family life by taking/playing on familiar roles.

-Skills: Role-play, peer interaction, social problem solving, creating imaginary scenarios, and taking on various roles.

Large Motor
Gym


The gym set-up will be changed to an obstacle course on Monday after school. There will be opportunities for climbing, balancing, crawling, jumping, hand-eye coordination. There will also be a Pedalo for children to foster coordination. Since the gym will be empty on Monday, we will have gym on Wednesday this week.
-Skills: spatial relationship, core strength, balance, turn-taking, climbing, visual-depth perception, jumping, sliding, motor coordination.
Playground
-Materials: Leaf rakes, shovels, buckets, bikes, and wagons; climbing structure, monkey bars, slide, swings, logs.
-Rationale: Offer plenty of opportunities for the children to use their large muscles. Encourage cooperation and social connections through dramatic play. Offer opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, and to notice and investigate the changes taking place. Opportunities for group games to continue to develop our sense of community and connect with Elizabeth's classroom.
-Skills: Running, biking, pedaling, hauling, digging, balancing, jumping, upper body strength, coordination, strength and endurance.

Special Interest 


Large Group
Large groups this week will focus on further developing the themes of hibernation and migration, as well as patterning through sound. 

Cooking
No cooking project this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday. Enjoy the long weekend!
Kay, Benny's mom, will be facilitating our baking activity to get ready for our end of the session party on Thursday, December 1st.

Thank you,

Kristi and Dalia


Fall Weekly Plan-November 14th-18th, 2011

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Weekly Plan-Dalia's Class
November 14th-18th, 2011
Kate Lead Teaching

Overview
This week we are shifting our focus to hibernation. The children had a chance to explore the subject on their own, last week, and now we will focus on the study of this topic all-together. Children will continue to make patterns with beautiful materials and notice patterns in nature. Small groups are starting to wrap up as each group is planning for a culminating event.

Expressive Arts
-Materials: Clay and clay shaping tools. Colored construction paper, colored pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, tape, staplers, and hole punchers. Flat crayons for leaf and bark rubbing.
-Rationale: Provide opportunities for creative expression with a modeling material. To engage in an in-depth investigation of different basic elements of art: texture and color. To provide materials to inspire children's creative expression and explore with a variety of media.
-Skills: Self-expression, creative risk-taking, fine motor strength and development.

Science
-Materials: Leaves, seeds, sticks, bark and other fall items collected in the playground and during our walks, a variety of fall gourds for examination and comparison to apples. Magnifying glasses and baskets/containers for independent sorting. Poster representations of local tree, their leaves, and seeds for comparison. Bird watching station. A balance scale for children to weigh items and compare (i.e. how many crabapples to an apple or how many pinecones for a gourd). An analog scale will be added this week as well, to quantify weights. Clipboards and pencils.
-Rationale: To support children's intrinsic curiosity about the world around them. To support and encourage children's observation of changes in nature, comparison. To encourage literacy and recording abilities.
-Skills: Observation, inquiry, sorting, symbolic representation, identification, comparison, fine-motor, hypothesizing, reasoning about events, measuring, prediction.

Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: pegs and peg boards, inset puzzles emphasizing people and animals, interlocking puzzles reflecting fruits, vegetables and gardens. A variety of seeds with corresponding patterning and counting cards on the light table. Beautiful gems and ribbons.
-Rationale: Our focus this week is on patterning. Children will be encouraged to use pegs to create patterns on pegboards. Gems and ribbons of different colors on the light table are also available to create patterns. They will continue to have opportunities for measuring and ordering skills as they compare weights of different apples, gourds, and other fall items.
-Skills: Patterning, measuring (weighing), sorting, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships, ordering, fine motor development, creative expression, measurement, prediction.

Language and Literacy
-Materials: A variety of writing materials, paper, and envelopes continue to be available. Special signs showing children how to start letters are posted in this area. Mailboxes with children's photos. Our library has a wide variety of books about animals, fall, and families. The loft holds a variety of books related to trees, leaves, seeds, apples, and pumpkins. 

-Rationale: To provide children with many opportunities to enjoy the spoken and written world. Integrate our topics of trees, apples and community into literacy activities and encourage symbolic representation. Foster symbolic representation as children pretend to write letters, stamp them, and mail them.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control.

Blocks
-Materials: Logs, sticks, cross-sections tree trunk discs, and small wooden pieces. Hollow blocks and unit blocks, small wooden cars, wooden trains.
-Rationale: To support children's creative and problem solving abilities, develop awareness of geometry and allow for opportunities for sharing, turn taking, and social interactions. To support our exploration of trees inside the classroom, and encourage children to incorporate tree elements into their dramatic play.
-Skills: Construction skills, dramatic play, symbolic representation, problem solving, cooperation.

Dramatic Play
-Materials: Kitchen with dishes and dinning table with chairs. The loft now has a tree created by The Tree Investigators' small group. Soft pillows and stuffed forest animals are located in the upper and lower loft. Animal costumes; bears and birds to enhance the forest and hibernation topics. Real wooden pieces, discs, and sticks are available in the dramatic play area in order for the children to be able to act out and build animal homes. The animal cave/hibernation cave houses sticks, logs, natural fabrics and woodland plastic animals for the children to create habitats for different kinds of animals.
-Rationale: To encourage social interactions. To continue to foster an interest in trees, forests, animals, their homes and hibernation. To support children's understanding of the changes taking place outdoors. The cave provides a cozy close place that promotes small group interaction, and discussions about forest animals, habitats and hibernation. To continue to encourage children's expression of family life by taking/playing on familiar roles.
-Skills: Role-play, peer interaction, social problem solving, creating imaginary scenarios, and taking on various roles.

Large Motor
Gym
The gym continues to offer opportunities for swinging, jumping, and greater balancing challenges.
-Skills: Running and jumping zone: jumping from one space to another, spatial relationship
Monkey bar with swings: core strength, balance, turn-taking
Slide with donut: climbing, visual-depth perception, jumping, sliding, balancing, motor coordination
A frame with balance beam: climbing, balance, motor coordination
Playground
-Materials: Leaf rakes, shovels, buckets, bikes, and wagons; climbing structure, monkey bars, slide, swings, logs.
-Rationale: Offer plenty of opportunities for the children to use their large muscles. Encourage cooperation and social connections through dramatic play. Offer opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, and to notice and investigate the changes taking place.
-Skills: Running, biking, pedaling, hauling, digging, balancing, jumping, upper body strength, coordination, strength and endurance.

Special Interest
Large Group
The hibernation theme will be further developed in large group.
Cooking
Marais' mom will be cooking with us on Thursday ☺
Oleanna Book Sale
Thursday, November 17th in the gym. Come early and check out her special books.

Thank you,
Kate

Fall Weekly Plan-November 7th-11th, 2011

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Weekly Plan-Dalia's Class
November 7th-11th, 2011
Jenny Lead Teaching

Overview
We are continuing to look at different aspects of community as we extend this concept into different animals' homes and their communities. We also will experience another aspect of community as we are fortunate to be adding a piano to our classroom this week! We look forward to the musical opportunities this will provide our classroom. We will be adding mailboxes for each child in the writing center to facilitate the children's interest in sending and receiving letters. We will also continue our exploration of color to creating and noticing patterns with the various colorful materials in the classroom. Small groups continue to meet and each group is highly involved in what they learn daily.

Expressive Arts
-Materials: Clay and clay shaping tools. Colored construction paper, colored pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, tape, staplers, and hole punchers. Flat crayons for leaf and bark rubbing.
-Rationale: To engage in an in-depth investigation of different basic elements of art: texture and color. To provide materials to inspire children's creative expression and explore with a variety of media.
-Skills: Self-expression, creative risk-taking, fine motor development.

Science
-Materials: Leaves, seeds, sticks, bark and other fall items collected in the playground and our walks, a variety of fall gourds for examination and comparison to apples. Magnifying glasses and baskets/containers for independent sorting. Poster representations of local trees, their leaves, and seeds for comparison. The bird watching station. A balance scale for children to weigh items in comparison (i.e. how many crabapples to an apple or how many pinecones for a gourd).
-Rationale: To support children's intrinsic curiosity about the world around them. To encourage symbolic representation. To promote children's observation of changes in nature, comparison, and identification abilities. To encourage literacy and a variety of recording abilities.
-Skills: Observation, inquiry, sorting, symbolic representation, identification, comparison, fine-motor, hypothesizing, reasoning about events, measuring, prediction.

Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: pegs and peg boards, inset puzzles emphasizing people and animals, interlocking puzzles reflecting fruits, vegetables and gardens. Unifix cubes with patterning cards. A variety of seeds with corresponding patterning and counting cards on the light table. Beautiful gems and ribbons of a variety of colors.
-Rationale: Our focus this week is to deepen our exploring of patterning. The children will then have the opportunity to match Unifix cubes to patterning cards and create their own patterning cards. They can use pegs to create patterns on pegboards and use lacing cards to weave patterns. Gems and ribbons of different colors on the light table are also available to create patterns. They will continue developing measuring and ordering skills as they compare weights of different apples, gourds, and other fall items.
-Skills: Patterning, measuring (weighing), sorting, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships, ordering, fine motor development, creative expression, measurement, prediction.

Language and Literacy
-Materials: A variety of writing materials, paper, and envelopes continue to be available, now in multiple locations in the classroom (one under the loft and another one at our new mailbox center). The post office mailbox area includes envelopes, postal stamps and a mailbox for sending letters. Our library has a wide variety of books about animals, fall, and families. The loft holds a variety of books related to trees, leaves, seeds, apples, and pumpkins. 

-Rationale: To provide children with many opportunities to enjoy the spoken and written world. Integrate our topics of trees, apples and community into literacy activities and encourage symbolic representation. Foster imagination in the children as they pretend to write letters, and stamp and mail them.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control.

Blocks
-Materials: Logs, sticks, cross-sections tree trunk discs, and small wooden pieces. Hollow blocks and unit blocks, small wooden cars, wooden trains.
-Rationale: To support children's creative and problem solving abilities, develop awareness of geometry and allow for opportunities for sharing, turn taking, and social interactions. To support our exploration of trees inside the classroom, and encourage children to incorporate tree elements into their dramatic play.
-Skills: Construction skills, dramatic play, symbolic representation, problem solving, cooperation.

Dramatic Play
-Materials: Kitchen with dishes and dress up clothes. The top of the loft will continue its transformation into a tree/forest as Jenny's small group (The Tree Investigators) works on adding the details to our classroom oak tree. Real wooden pieces, discs, and sticks are available in the dramatic play area in order for the children to be able to act out and build animal homes. Animal costumes of birds and bears have been added to enhance the forest theme. The animal cave has been transformed into a hibernation cave, with sticks, logs, natural fabrics and woodland animal toys for the children to create habitats for different kinds of animals. 

-Rationale: To encourage social interactions. To continue to foster an interest in trees, especially apple trees, and the changes taking place outdoors. To continue to encourage children's expression of family life by taking/playing on familiar roles. The cave provides a cozy close place that promotes small group interaction, and discussions about forest animals, habitats and hibernation.
-Skills: Role-play, peer interaction, social problem solving, creating imaginary scenarios, and taking on various roles.

Large Motor
Gym
The gym has been newly updated to create more large motor opportunities such as swinging, jumping, and greater challenges for balancing.
-Skills: Running and jumping zone: jumping from one space to another, spatial relationship
Monkey bar with swings: core strength, balance, turn-taking
Slide with donut: climbing, visual-depth perception, jumping, sliding, balancing, motor coordination
A frame with balance beam: climbing, balance, motor coordination
Playground
-Materials: Leaf rakes, shovels, buckets, bikes, and wagons; climbing structure, monkey bars, slide, swings, logs.
-Rationale: Offer plenty of opportunities for the children to use their large muscles. Encourage cooperation and social connections through dramatic play. Offer opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, and to notice and investigate the changes taking place.

-Skills: Running, biking, pedaling, hauling, digging, balancing, jumping, upper body strength, coordination, strength and endurance.

Special Interest
Large Group
Dalia will introduce clay on Monday.
Picture day is Wednesday, November 9th! We will not have small groups or very messy activities on this day. We will need two
Cooking
This Thursday Lili H-L's mom Katie will be cooking carrot raisin muffins with us! Yum!
parent volunteers on Wednesday to help out the class with all the transitions this day.

Thank you,

Jenny

Fall Weekly Plan-October 31st-November 4th, 2011

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Weekly Plan-Dalia's Class
October 31st- November 4th, 2011
Kristi Lead Teaching

Overview
This week our focus will shift toward community, while still maintaining our applications for trees and apples. We will be adding a post office following on the children's interest in sending letters to and receiving them from Dalia while she was away. We will also extend our exploration of color to making patterns with the various colorful materials in the classroom. We will start exploring the concept of patterning, Small groups are on their way and we will continue to meet and learn daily.

Expressive Arts

-Materials: Red, yellow, and green paint, rollers and white paper. Colored construction paper, colored pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, tape, staplers, and hole punchers.
-Rationale: To engage in an in-depth investigation of a basic element of art: color. To provide materials to inspire children's creative expression.
-Skills: Self-expression, creative risk-taking, fine motor development.

Science

-Materials: Leaves and other fall items collected in the playground and our walks, including the crabapples we picked from the trees behind our school. Magnifying glasses and baskets/containers for independent sorting. Poster representations of local trees, their leaves, and seeds for comparison. A variety of apples from our field trip. Collected special "treasures" brought by the children (i.e. pinecones, acorn seeds, leaf from a tree close by our homes, etc). The bird watching station set up for the children to view and chart the different types of birds that come to the feeder. A balance scale for children to weigh items in comparison (i.e. how many crabapples to an apple).

-Rationale: To support children's intrinsic curiosity about the world around them. To encourage symbolic representation. To promote children's observation of changes in nature, comparison, and identification abilities. To encourage literacy and a variety of recording abilities.
-Skills: Observation, inquiry, sorting, symbolic representation, identification, comparison, fine-motor, hypothesizing, reasoning about events, measuring, prediction.

Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: Colored shape sorter/stacker, inset puzzles emphasizing people and animals, interlocking puzzles reflecting fruits, vegetables and gardens. Unifix cubes with graph charts and patterning cards. A variety of seeds with corresponding patterning cards on the light table.
-Rationale: Our focus this week is moving toward patterning and graphing. Children will extend their knowledge of graphing after we graphed our apple preference results in large group last week. They will have the opportunity to make graphs on their own using Unifix cubes. We will also introduce patterning with our dye-cut apples in large group. The children will then have the opportunity to match Unifix cubes to patterning cards. They will continue developing measuring and ordering skills as they compare shapes and sizes of different apples.
-Skills: Patterning, graphing, sorting, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships, ordering, fine motor development, creative expression, measurement, prediction.

Language and Literacy
-Materials: A variety of writing materials, paper, and envelopes continue to be available, now in multiple locations in the classroom (one under the loft and another one at our new "post office"). The post office includes envelopes, postal stamps and a mailbox for sending letters. Our library has a wide variety of books about animals, fall, and families. The loft will hold a variety of books related to trees, leaves, seeds, and apples. 

-Rationale: To provide children with many opportunities to enjoy the spoken and written world. Integrate our topics of trees, apples and community into literacy activities and encourage symbolic representation. Foster imagination in the children as they pretend to write letters, and stamp and mail them.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control.
Blocks
-Materials: Logs, sticks, cross-sections tree trunk discs, and small wooden pieces. Hollow blocks and unit blocks, small wooden cars, wooden trains.
-Rationale: To support children's creative and problem solving abilities, develop awareness of geometry and allow for opportunities for sharing, turn taking, and social interactions. To support our exploration of trees inside the classroom, and encourage children to incorporate tree elements into their dramatic play.
-Skills: Construction skills, dramatic play, symbolic representation, problem solving, cooperation.

Dramatic Play

-Materials: Kitchen with dishes and dress up clothes. The top of the loft will continue its transformation into a tree/forest as Jenny's small group works on building the trunk of a "tree." Real apples, crabapples, and baskets are available in the dramatic play area in order for the children to be able to act out their apple orchard experiences. Animal costumes of birds and bears have been added to enhance the forest theme. The animal cave will be transformed into a hibernation cave, with sticks, logs, natural fabrics and woodland animal toys for the children to create habitats for different kinds of animals. 

-Rationale: To encourage social interactions. To continue to foster an interest in trees, especially apple trees, and the changes taking place outdoors. To continue to encourage children's expression of family life by taking/playing on familiar roles. The cave provides a cozy close place that promotes small group interaction, and discussions about forest animals, habitats and hibernation.
-Skills: Role-play, peer interaction, social problem solving, creating imaginary scenarios, and taking on various roles.

Large Motor
Gym
The gym has been updated to include the monkey bars with swings, slide with the donut, and an A-frame with balance beam. The new set-up will support upper and lower body coordination, strength and balance, provide opportunities for classifying and identifying shapes and colors, and also support social skills, turn taking, and collaboration.
-Skills: Running and jumping zone: jumping from one space to another, spatial relationship
Monkey bar with swings: core strength, balance, turn-taking
Slide with donut: climbing, visual-depth perception, jumping, sliding, balancing, motor coordination
A frame with balance beam: climbing, balance, motor coordination
Playground
-Materials: Leaf rakes, shovels, buckets, bikes, and wagons; climbing structure, monkey bars, slide, swings, logs.
-Rationale: Offer plenty of opportunities for the children to use their large muscles. Encourage cooperation and social connections through dramatic play. Offer opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, and to notice and investigate the changes taking place.

-Skills: Running, biking, pedaling, hauling, digging, balancing, jumping, upper body strength, coordination, strength and endurance.

Special Interest
Large Group
On Monday, we will welcome Dalia back. We will then read the book A Letter to Amy in order to introduce our new post office. On Wednesday, we will compare weights of various items using the balance scale from the science center. On Thursday, we will introduce patterning using dye-cut apples, and have the children practice predicting which color comes next.

Cooking/Baking volunteers needed for Thursdays! Please contact us if you are interested!
Picture day is coming up... Wednesday, November 9th!

Thank you,
Kristi

Fall Weekly Plan-October 24th-28th, 2011

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Weekly Plan-Dalia's Class
October 24th-28th, 2011
Kate Lead Teaching

Overview
After what felt like a very short week, we are looking forward to the new very exciting week coming up. We will continue to explore apples and trees. Nature outside is changing and thanks to our bird watching station we are able to notice these changes from the inside and record them. We will continue our exploration of color and extend it to the colors we see outside and in the apples inside the classroom.
This week we will start small groups. This first week we will bring children's awareness to the topics of Trees, Hands-on Art and Music and Movement.

Expressive Arts
-Materials: Red, yellow, and green paint, thick brushes and white paper. Colored construction paper, colored pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, tape, staplers, and hole punchers.
-Rationale: To engage in an in-depth investigation of a basic element of art: color. To provide materials to inspire children's creative expression.
-Skills: Exploration and in-depth investigation of color. Self-expression, creative risk-taking, fine motor development.

Science
-Materials: Tree photos from our playground, places that are close by our school, and from children and teacher's homes. Leaves and other fall items collected in the playground and our walks, including the crabapples we picked from the trees behind our school. Magnifying glasses and baskets/containers for independent sorting. Poster representations of local trees, their leaves, and seeds for comparison. A variety of apples from our field trip. Collected special "treasures" brought by the children (special pinecones, acorn seeds, leaf from a tree close by our homes, etc). A bird watching station set up for the children to view and chart the different types of birds that come to the feeder. Now that we have added our own hand-made bird feeders created on Wednesday we are hoping for more birds' sights. Picture representations along with the printed names of birds native to the area have been added along with clipboards and colored pencils.
-Rationale: To support children's intrinsic curiosity about the world around them. To encourage symbolic representation. To promote children's observation of changes in nature, comparison, and identification abilities. To encourage literacy and a variety of recording abilities.
-Skills: Observation, inquiry, sorting, symbolic representation, identification, comparison, fine motor, hypothesizing, reasoning about events.

Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: Colored shape sorter/stacker, inset puzzles emphasizing people and animals, interlocking puzzles reflecting people and baby animals. Colors and Shape-Match Me game. Laminated leaves on the light table, and a variety of apples. The game "Hi-Ho cherry-o" will be added as well.
-Rationale: Our focus this week continues to be matching and sorting (trees and apples). Children will have the opportunity to build on their matching skills as they examine leaves on the light table and match them to the ones we find outside. They will also have the opportunity to compare the leaves to a descriptive poster to find out which leaves belong to which tree. They will continue developing measuring and ordering skills as they compare shapes and sizes of different apples. We continue to draw children's attention to different kinds of shapes.
-Skills: Color and shape recognition, matching, sorting, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships, ordering, fine motor development, creative expression, measurement.

Language and Literacy
-Materials: A variety of writing materials; paper, and envelopes continue to be available, now in multiple locations in the classroom (one under the loft and another one right by the "Bird Watching Station"). Our library has a wide variety of books about animals, fall, and families. The loft will hold a variety of books related to trees, leaves, seeds, and apples.
-Rationale: To provide children with many opportunities to enjoy the spoken and written world. Integrate our topic about trees into literacy activities and encourage symbolic representation.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control.

Blocks
-Materials: Logs, sticks, cross-sections tree trunk discs, and small wooden pieces. Hollow blocks and unit blocks, small wooden cars, wooden trains.
-Rationale: To support children's creative and problem solving abilities, develop awareness of geometry and allow for opportunities for sharing, turn taking, and social interactions. To support our exploration of trees inside the classroom, and encourage children to incorporate tree elements into their dramatic play.
-Skills: Construction skills, dramatic play, symbolic representation, problem solving, cooperation.

Dramatic Play
-Materials: Kitchen with dishes and dress up clothes. The top of the loft will continue its transformation into a tree/forest. Real apples, crabapples, and baskets are available in the dramatic play area in order for the children to be able to act out their apple orchard experiences. Animal costumes of birds and bears will also be added to enhance the forest theme. The animal cave continues to host puppies, kittens, pet dishes, and leashes.
-Rationale: To encourage social interactions. To continue to foster an interest in trees, especially apple trees, and the changes taking place outdoors. To continue to encourage children's expression and of family life by taking/playing on familiar roles. The cave provides a cozy close place that promotes small group interaction, discussions about taking care of animals and conversations about taking care of pets.
-Skills: Role-play, peer interaction, social problem solving, creating imaginary scenarios and taking on various roles.

Large Motor
Gym
The focus remains on balance. In the gym a balance beam was added for the children to cross to get to the A-frame slide. The landing donut has been removed from the jumping station to encourage/promote the children's dynamic balance (i.e. jumping and landing) as they develop the strength and coordination necessary to land solidly on two feet. The monkey bars will be available - fostering full-body strength/coordination/balance as the children flip themselves upside-down as well as cross the top (with teacher assistance, of course). Lastly, we will add scooter boards to encourage core-strength and balance as children ride independently or cooperatively (being towed by a peer).
Playground
Materials: Leaf rakes, shovels, buckets, bikes, and wagons; climbing structure, monkey bars, slide, swings, logs.
-Rationale: Offer plenty of opportunities for the children to use their big body muscles. Encourage cooperation and social connections through dramatic play. Offer opportunities to enjoy the outdoors and notice and investigate the changes taking place.
-Skills: Running, biking, pedaling, hauling, digging, balancing, jumping, upper body strength, coordination, strength and endurance.

Special Interest
Large Group
On Monday, we will introduce and discuss small groups. We will reveal the different topics (Music, art, and trees) that will be explored during the coming weeks and the members in each group. On Wednesday we will continue to investigate apples. During snack we will have a taste testing of different apples; this activity will be introduced during large group. On Thursday, we will graph our findings and analyze them.

Volunteer Opportunities: starting next Thursday, November 3rd, we will be welcoming volunteers to come and coke/bake in the classroom. This activity should take about 20-30 minutes (starting at 12:30)! If we need to bake or cook, it should take no more than an hour... we plan on eating this for snack. If you think you'd like to facilitate something different, please contact us, we can always prepare it on Wednesday and eat it for snack on Thursday!

Thank you,

Kate


Fall Weekly Plan-October 17th-21st, 2011

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Weekly Plan-Dalia's Class
October 17th-21st, 2011
Jenny Lead Teaching

Overview
Although the Lab School is closed on Thursday October 20th and Friday October 21st, we have a busy week planned! We will continue our apple applications in the classroom while maintaining the focus on studying trees in our community.
We will focus our exploration of color on the color red. Many children are noticing the red color of the leaves on the changing trees, and of course the red color of the apples we picked on our field trip! Our study of trees and the changes taking place outdoors are on their way and we will continue to direct children's attention to these!

Expressive Arts
-Materials: Red, white and black paint of to create varying hues, thick brushes and white paper. Colored construction paper, colored pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, tape, staplers, and hole punchers, Collage materials for fall item collections
-Rationale: To engage in an in-depth investigation of a basic element of art: color. To provide materials to inspire children's creative expression.
-Skills: Exploration and in-depth investigation of color. Self-expression, creative risk-taking, fine motor development.

Science
-Materials: Tree photos from our playground, places that are close by our school, and from children and teacher's homes. Leaves and other fall items collected in the playground and our walks, including the crabapples we picked from the trees behind our school. Magnifying glasses and baskets/containers for independent sorting. Poster representations of local trees, their leaves, and seeds for comparison. We will be adding a variety of apples after our field trip on Wednesday. Collected special "treasures" brought by the children (special pinecones, acorn seeds, leaf from a tree close by our homes, etc). A bird watching station has also been set up for the children to view and chart the different types of birds that come to the feeder. Children will be making their own feeders on Wednesday to add to the bird watching station. Picture representations along with the printed names of birds native to the area have been added along with clipboards and colorful pencils.
-Rationale: To support children's intrinsic curiosity about the world around them. To encourage symbolic representation. To promote children's observation of changes in nature, comparison, and identification abilities. To encourage literacy and documenting abilities.
-Skills: Observation, inquiry, sorting, symbolic representation, identification, comparison, fine motor, hypothesizing, reasoning about events.

Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: Colored shape sorter/stacker, inset puzzles emphasizing people and animals, interlocking puzzles reflecting people and baby animals. Colors and Shape-Match Me game. Slot-a-rounds, Duplos and laminated leaves on the light table, variety of apples. The game "Hi-Ho cherry-o" will be added as well.
-Rationale: Our focus this week continues to be matching and sorting (trees and apples) taking advantage of our visit to the apple orchard. Children will have the opportunity to build on their matching skills as they examine leaves on the light table and match them to the ones we found outside. They will also further develop their measuring and ordering skills as they compare shapes and sizes of different apples. We continue to draw children's attention to different kinds of shapes.
-Skills: Color and shape recognition, matching, sorting, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships, ordering, fine motor development, creative expression, measurement.

Language and Literacy
-Materials: A variety of writing materials, paper, and envelopes continue to be available, now in multiple locations in the classroom (one under the loft and another one right by the "Bird Watching Station"). Our library has a wide variety of books about animals, fall, and families. The loft will hold a variety of books related to trees, leaves, seeds, and apples.
-Rationale: To provide children with many opportunities to enjoy the spoken and written world. Provide the children with an additional opportunity to experience symbols. Integrate tree curriculum into literacy activities and encourage symbolic representation.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control.

Blocks
-Materials: Logs, sticks, cross-sections tree trunk discs, and small wooden pieces. Hollow blocks and unit blocks, small wooden cars, wooden trains.
-Rationale: To support children's creative and problem solving abilities, develop awareness of geometry and allow for opportunities for sharing, turn taking, and social interactions. To reinforce the curriculum of trees inside the classroom and encourage children to incorporate tree elements into their dramatic play.
-Skills: Construction skills, dramatic play, symbolic representation, problem solving, cooperation.

Dramatic Play
-Materials: Kitchen with dishes and dress up clothes. The top of the loft will continue its transformation into a tree/forest. Real apples, crabapples, and baskets are available in the dramatic play area in order for the children to be able to act out their apple orchard experiences. Animal costumes of birds and bears will also be added to enhance the forest theme. The animal cave continues to host puppies, kittens, pet dishes, and leashes.
-Rationale: To encourage social interactions. To continue to foster an interest in trees, especially apple trees, and the changes taking place outdoors. To continue to encourage children's expression and of family life by taking/playing on familiar roles. The cave provides a cozy close place that promotes small group interaction, discussions about taking care of animals and conversations about taking care of pets.
-Skills: Role-play, peer interaction, social problem solving, creating imaginary scenarios and taking on various roles

Large Motor
Gym
The focus remains on balance. In the gym a balance beam was added for the children to cross to get to the A-frame slide. The landing donut has been removed from the jumping station to encourage/promote the children's dynamic balance (i.e. jumping and landing) as they develop the strength and coordination necessary to land solidly on two feet. The monkey bars will be available - fostering full-body strength/coordination/balance as the children flip themselves upside-down as well as cross the top (with teacher assistance, of course). Lastly, we will add scooter boards to encourage core-strength and balance as children ride independently or cooperatively (being towed by a peer).
Playground
Materials: Leaf rakes, shovels, buckets, bikes, and wagons; climbing structure, monkey bars, slide, swings, logs.
-Rationale: Offer plenty of opportunities for the children to use their big body muscles. Encourage cooperation and social connections through dramatic play. Offer opportunities to enjoy the outdoors and notice and investigate the changes taking place.
-Skills: Running, biking, pedaling, hauling, digging, balancing, jumping, upper body strength, coordination, strength and endurance.

Special Interest
- Large Group
On Monday, the sense of school-wide community will continue to be fostered as the class will write a letter to Elizabeth's class (the other PM classroom) thanking them for going to the apple orchard with us and for helping to prepare the apples for our cooking project last week. The children will also work in their preliminary small groups to create their own drawn or written representations of the field trip. These drawing will be added to each child's individual book. Working in the small groups will allow the children to become better acquainted and comfortable with the individuals they will be working closely the next few weeks! The children will work in the same groups on Wednesday as they create their own bird feeders to add to the bird watching station.

Cooking Projects: Make baked apples (Wednesday)
-Rationale: Focus on our sense of community and apply apple knowledge. Exploration and inquiry of apples.
- Skills: Listening, discussing, enjoyment of group activities, cycle of learning (exploration and inquiry).

Reminders
Creativity Night: Tuesday, October 18th 6-7:30.
No school: Thursday and Friday, October 20th and 21st. Room parents are organizing opportunities to get together... make sure you R.S.V.P!
Small Group Project Work will start on Monday, October 24th... stay tunned!

Thanks! -
Jenny

Fall Weekly Plan-October 10th-14th, 2011

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Weekly Plan-Dalia's Class
October 10th-14th, 2011
Jenny, Kate, Kristi and Dalia co-teaching

Overview
This week we are focusing on our field trip to the Apple orchard! Community, math, science, dramatic play and creative opportunities will be inspired by this field trip, support and expand our current curriculum topics.

Expressive Arts
-Materials: Blue, white and black paints, thick brushes and white paper. Sticks, pinecones, acorns, leaves, seeds, glue, and tape. Colored construction paper, colored pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, tape, staplers, and hole punchers.
-Rationale: To continue to investigate color; this time offering the opportunity to create a palette of blues. To provide natural materials to inspire children's creative expression.
-Skills: Observation, self-expression, creative risk-taking, fine motor development.

Sensory
-Materials: Water, cups, pitchers, bottles, funnels, and gutters.
-Rationale: To provide the children with a soothing and familiar sensory experience and to promote social interactions.
-Skills: Experimentation, sensory stimulation and pleasure, beginning to understand the concept of conservation, exploring inclines in the water, taking turns and sharing materials.

Science
-Materials: Tree photos from our playground, places that are close by our school, and from children and teacher's homes. Leaves collected in the playground and our walks. Crabapples collected from nearby trees by the class on another walk. Magnifying glasses and baskets/containers for independent sorting. Poster representations of local trees, their leaves, and their seeds for comparison with physical materials. We will be adding a variety of apples after our field trip on Wednesday. Collected special "treasures" brought by the children (special pinecones, acorn seeds, leaf from a tree close by our homes, etc). We will draw children's attention to special beginning of fall signs when in the playground and taking walks around our school.
-Rationale: To support children's intrinsic curiosity about the world around them. To encourage symbolic representation. To promote children's observation of changes in nature, comparison, and identification abilities.
-Skills: Observation, inquiry, sorting, symbolic representation, identification, comparison, fine motor, hypothesizing, reasoning about events.

Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: Colored shape sorter/stacker, inset puzzles emphasizing people and animals, interlocking puzzles reflecting people and baby animals. Colors and Shape-Match Me game. Slot-a-rounds, Duplos and laminated leaves on the light table, variety of apples.
-Rationale: Our focus this week will be moving toward matching and sorting (trees and apples) taking advantage of our visit to the apple orchard. Children will have the opportunity to build on their matching skills as they examine leaves on the light table and match them to the ones we found outside. They will also further develop their measuring and ordering skills as they compare shapes and sizes of different apples. We continue to draw children's attention to different kinds of shapes.
-Skills: Color and shape recognition, matching, sorting, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships, ordering, fine motor development, creative expression, measurement.

Language and Literacy
-Materials: A variety of writing materials, paper, and envelopes continue to be available. Our library has a wide variety of books about animals, fall, and families. The loft holds a variety of books related to trees. Personalized books will be introduced this week and remain at school throughout the year.
-Rationale: To provide children with many opportunities to enjoy the spoken and written world. To support the children's sense of self and community.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control.

Blocks
-Materials: Logs, sticks, cross-sections tree trunk discs, and small wooden pieces. Hollow blocks and unit blocks, small wooden cars, wooden trains.
-Rationale: To support children's creative and problem solving abilities, develop awareness of geometry and allow for opportunities for sharing, turn taking, and social interactions. To reinforce the curriculum of trees inside the classroom and encourage children to incorporate tree elements into their dramatic play.To connect between natural materials we may find outdoors and materials found in the classroom. To foster children's creative expression through building.
-Skills: Construction skills, creative building, dramatic play, symbolic representation, problem solving, cooperation.

Dramatic Play
-Materials: Kitchen with dishes, fruits and veggies, dress up clothes. The cribs, babies and babies' accessories will be by the loft on the lower level. Crabapples that the children picked on Thursday of last week will be added to the loft area in order to facilitate the transformation into a tree/forest. Animal costumes of birds and bears will also be added to enhance the forest theme. The animal cave continues to host puppies and kittens. The big dolls' house with accessories is located by the caves and unit blocks.
-Rationale: To encourage social interactions. To continue to spark an interest in trees and the changes taking place outdoors. To continue to encourage children's expression and of family life by taking/playing on familiar roles. The cave provides a cozy close place that promotes small group interaction, discussions about taking care of animals and conversations about pets.
-Skills: Role-play, peer interaction, social problem solving, creating imaginary scenarios

Large Motor
Gym
The focus is on balance. Balance beam for the children to cross to get to the A-frame slide. The landing donut has been removed from the jumping station to encourage/promote the children's dynamic balance (i.e. jumping and landing) as they develop the strength and coordination necessary to land solidly on two feet. The monkey bars will be available - fostering full-body strength/coordination/balance as the children flip themselves upside-down as well as cross the top (with teacher assistance, of course). Lastly, we will add scooter boards to encourage core-strength and balance as children ride independently or cooperatively (being towed by a peer).
Playground
Materials: Shovels, , buckets, bikes, and wagons; climbing structure, monkey bars, slide, swings, logs.
-Rationale: Offer plenty of opportunities for the children to use their big body muscles. Encourage cooperation and social connections through dramatic play. Offer opportunities to enjoy the outdoors and notice and investigate the changes taking place.
-Skills: Running, biking, pedaling, hauling, digging, balancing, jumping, upper body strength, coordination, strength and endurance.

Special Interest
- Large Group: Focus on our classroom as a community of learners and our upcoming field trip. We will continue to build awareness and explore trees by our school and compare these to those by our homes by discussing our pictures of home trees during large group.
- Field trip to the apple orchard.- We will attend a field trip to the apple orchard to integrate our themes of community, trees, and apples!
-Rationale: Focus on our sense of community. Exploration and inquiry of trees both indoors and outdoors
- Skills: Listening, discussing, enjoyment of group activities, cycle of learning (exploration and inquiry), and comparison.

Jenny, Kate, Kristi and Dalia

Fall Weekly Plan-October 3rd-7th, 2011

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Weekly Plan-Dalia's Class
October 3rd-7th, 2011
Dalia Lead Teaching

Overview
The children are quickly getting used to our schedules and routines. We will continue to work on building and strengthening relationships in the classroom. This week our focus turns to, not only know each other, but to feel as a classroom! We will use the "naming of our pet fish" to create a major community building opportunity! Children have been thinking of a name and on Monday we will vote and decide on a name (and maybe even a last name!). We will also begin to explore COLOR. Since our fish is blue, we thought it would make sense to start with blue! We will engage in an in depth investigation of the color blue; what kinds of blues we know of, where do we see blue inside and outside of our classroom, etc. We are hoping to transfer and utilize this investigation with other colors later on. Our study of trees and the changes taking place outdoors are on their way and we will continue to draw children's attention to these!

Expressive Arts
-Materials: Blue paint, thick brushes and white paper. Colored construction paper, colored pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, tape, staplers, and hole punchers.
-Rationale: To engage in an in-depth investigation of a basic element of art: color. To provide materials to inspire children's creative expression.
-Skills: Exploration and in-depth investigation of color. Self-expression, creative risk-taking, fine motor development.

Sensory
-Materials: Water, cups, pitchers, bottles, and funnels.
-Rationale: To provide the children with a soothing and familiar sensory experience and to promote social interactions.
-Skills: Experimentation, sensory stimulation and pleasure, beginning to understand the concept of conservation, taking turns and sharing materials.

Science
-Materials: Tree photos from our playground and places that are close by our school. Leaves collected in the playground and our walks. Collected special "treasures" brought by the children (special pinecone, smooth rock, bird's nest, leaf from a tree close by our homes, etc). We will draw children's attention to special beginning of fall signs when in the playground and taking walks around our school.
-Rationale: To support children's intrinsic curiosity about the world around them. To encourage children into noticing the changes taking place outdoors. To encourage symbolic representation.
-Skills: Observation, inquiry, sorting, symbolic representation, comparison, fine motor, hypothesizing, reasoning about events.

Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: Colored shape sorter/stacker, inset puzzles emphasizing people and animals, interlocking puzzles reflecting people and baby animals. Colors and Shape-Match Me game. Slot-a-rounds, Duplos on the light table.
-Rationale: Our focus this week will be color. We continue to draw children's attention to different kinds of shapes. Our measurement area has transferred to the back of the classroom, where we will continue to display children's heights.
-Skills: Color and shape recognition, matching, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships, fine motor development, creative expression, measurement.

Language and Literacy
-Materials: A variety of writing materials, paper, and envelopes continue to be available. Our library has a wide variety of books about animals, fall, and families. The loft will hold a variety of books related to trees.
-Rationale: To provide children with many opportunities to enjoy the spoken and written world. Provide the children with an additional opportunity to experience symbols.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control.

Blocks
-Materials: Hollow blocks and unit blocks, small wooden cars, wooden trains.
-Rationale: To support children's creative and problem solving abilities, develop awareness of geometry and allow for opportunities for sharing, turn taking, and social interactions.
-Skills: Construction skills, dramatic play, symbolic representation, problem solving, cooperation.

Dramatic Play
-Materials: Kitchen with dishes, fruits and veggies, dress up clothes. The cribs, babies and babies' accessories will be by the loft on the lower level. The top of the loft will begin a slow yet interesting transformation into a tree/forest. The animal cave continues to host puppies and kittens. The big dolls' house with accessories is located by the caves and unit blocks.
-Rationale: To encourage social interactions. To begin to spark an interest in trees and the changes taking place outdoors. To continue to encourage children's expression and of family life by taking/playing on familiar roles. The cave provides a cozy close place that promotes small group interaction, discussions about taking care of animals and conversations about pets.
-Skills: Role-play, peer interaction, social problem solving, creating imaginary scenarios

Large Motor
-Materials: Slide climber, wall mounted ladders, monkey bars, rocking boat, A-frame jumping station. The playground will offer shovels, buckets, bikes, and wagons.
-Rationale: A simple set-up in the gym is inviting and allows us to assess gross motor abilities and confidence. The teachers will slowly introduce our big playground and how to navigate around it, as well as our playground equipment.
-Skills: Risk taking, climbing, coordination, upper body strength, depth perception, balance, jumping and landing. On the playground there are opportunities for digging, hauling, pedaling, running.

Special Interest
- Large Group: Focus on our classroom as a community of learners. We will name our pet fish. We will continue to build awareness and explore trees by our school and compare these to those by our homes.
- -Rationale: Focus on our sense of community. Exploration and inquiry of trees.
- Skills: Listening, discussing, enjoyment of group activities, cycle of learning (exploration and inquiry).


Fall Weekly Plan-September 21st-30th

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Weekly Plan-Dalia's Class
September 21st-30th, 2011
Dalia Lead Teaching

Overview
Hello and Welcome to our classroom! We are excited to start this year and get to know all the children and their families! The home visits, the open house and the first short days of school, allow us to start getting acquainted with each other. The staggered start these first days will allow us to be able to give extra special attention to all the children. This adjustment period will help the children become familiar with our classroom routines and comfortably explore our environment.
During the first weeks, it is our priority to get to know each individual child and their unique personalities and start the process of building meaningful relationships. We want to encourage connections between the children themselves and the children and the teachers and begin building community. It is important that you communicate with me and let me know what are the children's impressions, feelings and general comments about school, so that I can make the necessary arrangements and rearrangements to make school a safe and joyful place for all and each one of them. Children's reactions to their first days in preschool varies. Some will have a smooth transition; some children need extra support. Some children may not show any specific feeling until a few weeks later. Please don't be surprised if the first days at school seem easy and the children have challenging times later on. We will work with each family individually to make this a successful experience for each child!
The morning teacher and myself have discussed intensively to make sure that our classroom looks warm and welcoming, appealing and exciting, yet not overwhelming. We have thoughtfully and intentionally chosen materials and activities that, we think, will capture children's interest and enthusiasm right away! As the days go by, and the student teachers and I will have time to observe and get to know the children and their passions, consider individual goals and differences, and we will slowly make the necessary changes and adaptations. It is extremely important that the children feel ownership of their classroom and understand that we respect their needs and interests and make them our priority

Our umbrella topic for the year is "Living Healthy." I will send a separate newsletter explaining the rationale behind this topic and how we plan on implementing it throughout the year. I welcome any insight from you! I will also add a detailed explanation regarding our use of "symbols" for each child this year... stay tuned!

Expressive Arts
-Materials: Colored construction paper, colored pencils, crayons, markers, scissors, glue sticks, tape, staplers, and hole punchers.
-Rationale: To provide materials to inspire children's creative expression.
-Skills: Self-expression, creative risk-taking, fine motor development.

Sensory
-Materials: Water, cups, pitchers, bottles, and funnels.
-Rationale: To provide the children with a soothing and familiar sensory experience and to promote social interactions.
-Skills: Experimentation, sensory stimulation and pleasure, beginning to understand the concept of conservation, taking turns and sharing materials.

Science
-Materials: Baby photos, measuring tape, scale, blocks for weighing, two Beta fish, tadpole. We will make sure to take advantage of our time outdoors and draw children's attention to our surroundings and notice and explore the changes that take place. We will draw their attention to the vegetable garden, animal and plant life.
-Rationale: To support children's intrinsic curiosity about themselves and the world around them. To spark interest in each other. Who am I? Who are the other children in my classroom? Where do I live? And how do my surroundings look like? Encourage children to develop their own theories and engage in discussions to expand their knowledge of the natural world. Draw children's attention to seasonal changes.
-Skills: Observation, inquiry, sorting, weighing, asking questions, hypothesizing, interpreting and reasoning about events

Math and Manipulatives
-Materials: Colored shape sorter/stacker, inset puzzles emphasizing people and animals, interlocking puzzles reflecting people and baby animals. Colors and Shape-Match Me game. Slot-a-rounds, Duplos. Measuring tape and scale in the science area.
-Rationale: Our focus to start the year will be on sorting and classification by shape, color. In the science area we will highlight measurement (weight and height). This will be the first exposure to this concept and we will revisit it several times during the year.
-Skills: Color and shape recognition, matching, one-to-one correspondence and whole/part relationships, fine motor development, creative expression, measurement.

Language and Literacy
-Materials: A variety of writing materials, paper, envelopes. A well stocked library with books about animals, vegetables, school and families. Each child will choose their "symbol."
-Rationale: To provide children with many opportunities to enjoy the spoken and written world. Provide the children with an additional opportunity to experience symbols.
-Skills: Letter recognition, listening and receptive abilities, fine motor control.

Blocks
-Materials: Hollow blocks and unit blocks, small wooden cars.
-Rationale: To support children's creative and problem solving abilities, develop awareness of geometry and allow for opportunities for social interactions.
-Skills: Construction skills, dramatic play, symbolic representation, problem solving, cooperation.

Dramatic Play
-Materials: Kitchen with dishes, fruits and veggies, dress up clothes. In the loft, a cozy space for cribs with babies, babies' accessories, pillows, big bears and baby books. In the animal cave we have created a special puppies and kittens environment. The big dolls' house with accessories is located by the caves and unit blocks.
-Rationale: To encourage social interactions and the expression of children's knowledge of family life by taking/playing on familiar roles. The cave provides a cozy close place that promotes small group interaction, discussions about taking care of animals and conversations about pets.
-Skills: Role-play, peer interaction, social problem solving, creating imaginary scenarios

Large Motor
-Materials: Slide climber, wall mounted ladders, monkey bars, rocking boat, A-frame jumping station. The playground will offer shovels, buckets, bikes, and wagons.
-Rationale: A simple set-up in the gym is inviting and allows us to assess gross motor abilities and confidence. The teachers will slowly introduce our big playground and how to navigate around it, as well as our playground equipment.
-Skills: Risk taking, climbing, coordination, upper body strength, depth perception, balance, jumping and landing. On the playground there are opportunities for digging, hauling, pedaling, running.

Special Interest
- Large Group: Getting to know each other through music and discussions.
- -Rationale: Introduce the children to classroom routines, each other, and start building a sense of community.
- Skills: Listening, discussing, enjoyment of group activities.

Dalia


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