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SPRING Lesson Plan 4-7-2014

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day-lily-sprouts.jpg


Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class
Week of: April 7-11, 2014
Lead teaching this week: Ross

Overview: Spring was here, then winter came back, and now spring is back again! Let's hope it stays, this time. Even with the cold temps and the big April snowfall, the child are happy to be back with one another, and their play reflects the strong social community that we have been working on developing through the fall and winter - the children are initiating interactions, confidently inviting others to join them, negotiating play themes, working on resolving conflicts independently...it is truly amazing to step back and see how the children's "hard work" has really paid off! Along with this social growth really shining through, the children have also become increasingly curious about learning: asking many thought-provoking questions during large group as well as throughout focus groups and free play. We want to foster this growing curiosity and start diving into some rich investigations - starting with: seed/plant life cycles, tools/wood working/building, and supporting academic skills using games with rules. These interests are just beginning to sprout like the lilies in front of the Lab School, and it will be exciting to see what these interests grow into over the course of the spring session!

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)
• Materials: at the art table: small wood scraps, assorted natural matures, caps, gems; at the clay table: clay, wire, plastic insects, wood knives
• Rationale: The art and clay tables have now merged as one, as many children used the wood scraps to create elaborate "homes, playgrounds, and towns" for Herman the Worm (made from clay) and his friends Sherman the Worm and Julia Feathers (also both worms...also both made from clay!). We will continue this explorative building and storytelling, however as the intention grows, we will eventually add glue to the mix and talk about making a more "permanent" town for Herman and friends (similar to the fall and winter collages made by the children previously).
• Skills: recognition of shape, patterning, artistic expression, symbolic representation, persistence, imagination/ creativity, connections/expressions of observed world, fine motor strength/endurance

Sensory (water table)
• Materials: water, PVC pipes and connecting joints, measuring cups, buckets, basters
• Rationale: The introduction of the PVC pipes sparked rich thought and planning as children connected and re-routed the pipes, resulting in some very elaborate (not to mention creative and fun) "water machines." However, we had one problem - all the pipes were the same length and just a bit too long to balance on the table. So we decided to cut some in half! Using a hacksaw, many children took turns and cut many of the pipes in two - showing great perseverance and determination! This has sparked an explosion in using real tools, and is discussed more in the "Special Interests" section. As for the water machines, we will continue playing with how to route water in the directions we want it to go, while figuring out how to use corks (or other methods) to stop the flow in other directions.
• Skills: scientific thinking and reasoning (cause & effect), higher level thinking skills (attending, attention span, problem solving, utilization), social interaction/communication skills, fine motor skills, creative thinking, conceptual knowledge (common objects)

Science
• Materials: Spring- and plant-themed books, assorted seeds, magnifying glasses, children's notebooks
• Rationale: This week, Jessica will introduce the topic of seeds and planting, starting with some awareness building about seed planting as well as by taking a look outside around the school to see what plants in nature are currently doing (assuming the snow stays away!).
• Skills: learning about our insects: their anatomy and how to care for them, scientific/higher-level thinking skills, observing and interpreting information about the natural world, generalization skills (connections between insect homes and other animal/human homes).

Math and Manipulatives
• Materials: Snail's Pace Race board game, Busy-Town board game, Memory flip-card game, parquetry blocks (with pattern cards), multi-triangle shape puzzle, numbers and tools puzzles and shape puzzles
• Rationale: The children have really enjoyed the challenge of the larger wood puzzles, working hard (many times with a peer) to figure out which piece goes exactly where. However, they have also enjoyed the Snail's Pace and Busy-Town games. These games have helped many practice taking turns, listening to peers, and following rules!
• Skills: concepts related to geometry/shape, part-to-whole relationships, symmetry one-to-one correspondence, counting, opportunities for collaborative problem solving, executive function skills, rule-following/turn-taking

Language and Literacy
• Materials: Our Alphabet and Name Book, Who Am I book, paper, envelopes, pencils, markers, stamps and stamp pads
• Rationale: Leaving Photobooth open on the computer gave a few children an idea for something new to add to our Who Am I book: funny faces! Currently, the children are trying to either fit as many faces on the screen as possible or taking a picture of their funniest face to add to the book. The table also sees regular visitors drawing and writing their own pictures and small books. We plan to keep the supplies stock to support this independent motivation to create!
• Skills: pre-/early -literacy skills, letter recognition, phonemic awareness, fine-motor coordination/endurance

Dramatic Play (including the "Nook")
• Materials: in the class - doctor's office props (including cot, doctor's tools, x-rays and x-ray box, charts, books), baby dolls, play house furniture and supplies; in the Nook - Brio trains, train tracks, Dr. Drew blocks
• Rationale: The doctor's office continues to see new patients every day! Many of them are baby dolls in need of a shot or bandage, however there is never a shortage of doctors to see the patients. We are planning to add more pictures of our class "in action" to help the children recall previous stories. We will also add "check up charts" as well as "height chart" and scale, as many children have mentioned they remember getting measured during their doctor visits (after talking about how many shots they received, of course!).
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, connections to previous experiences/memory skills, promoting social interactions while foster new and old relationships, practicing various social skills, symbolic representation, connection to prior experiences

Blocks
• Materials: large hollow blocks, small multi-shaped unit blocks, peg people, Dr. Drew blocks
• Rationale: Independent building of large structures continues to be a popular activity for many! Garbage trucks, fire trucks, house big enough for the whole class...the list of things being built is endless. What we hope to do now is encourage more connection to the writing table during their building - "What kind of sign does this _____ need? Let's head to the table and write one quick!" This is a fun and easy way to practice the pre-/early-literacy skills for all children, especially those that are more reluctant to write/drawing in general.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, symbolic representation, concepts related to building/balance/engineering, supporting social relationships/interactions, opportunities for endless dramatic play

Large-motor
• In the gym: The gym will remain the same for one more week, however Betsy and Jessica will begin leading games at the start of gym.
• On the playground: The playground is waking up after its long winter slumber, and as it comes back, we will keep a close eye for additional signs of spring. Also, we explore the melting and thawing taking place...not to mention the return of many more animals! I think it's safe to say...we need to be outside after this past winter!
• Skills: upper-/lower-boy strength, static and dynamic balance, hopping (lower leg strength/coordination), jumping/landing skills, proprioceptive (body-in-motion) skills, spatial-/directional-awareness, propulsion skills

Announcements/Special Interest
• As mentioned in the science section, using saws become a very popular activity last week! We want to build on this excitement/interest in using real tools to do real work! To do that, we have set up a "tools and woodworking" area in the hallway behind room 50 (Amy's class). With a teacher, the children can take turns exploring real tools and gain confidence in using them competently and safely! With this, if you have any scraps of lumber/wood lying in the basement/garage/storage space, we would happily help kick-off your spring-cleaning and take them here!
• It is going to be wet and muddy on the playground for sure this week. Please send appropriate outdoor clothing.

Snack
Monday - Cucumbers & crackers
Tuesday - Rice Chex & raisins
Wednesday - Pretzels & carrots
Thursday - Sushi
Friday - Popcorn
* All snacks served with milk and water, unless otherwise noted *

SPRING Lesson Plan 4-7-2014

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day-lily-sprouts.jpg


Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class
Week of: April 7-11, 2014
Lead teaching this week: Ross

Overview: Spring was here, then winter came back, and now spring is back again! Let's hope it stays, this time. Even with the cold temps and the big April snowfall, the child are happy to be back with one another, and their play reflects the strong social community that we have been working on developing through the fall and winter - the children are initiating interactions, confidently inviting others to join them, negotiating play themes, working on resolving conflicts independently...it is truly amazing to step back and see how the children's "hard work" has really paid off! Along with this social growth really shining through, the children have also become increasingly curious about learning: asking many thought-provoking questions during large group as well as throughout focus groups and free play. We want to foster this growing curiosity and start diving into some rich investigations - starting with: seed/plant life cycles, tools/wood working/building, and supporting academic skills using games with rules. These interests are just beginning to sprout like the lilies in front of the Lab School, and it will be exciting to see what these interests grow into over the course of the spring session!

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)
• Materials: at the art table: small wood scraps, assorted natural matures, caps, gems; at the clay table: clay, wire, plastic insects, wood knives
• Rationale: The art and clay tables have now merged as one, as many children used the wood scraps to create elaborate "homes, playgrounds, and towns" for Herman the Worm (made from clay) and his friends Sherman the Worm and Julia Feathers (also both worms...also both made from clay!). We will continue this explorative building and storytelling, however as the intention grows, we will eventually add glue to the mix and talk about making a more "permanent" town for Herman and friends (similar to the fall and winter collages made by the children previously).
• Skills: recognition of shape, patterning, artistic expression, symbolic representation, persistence, imagination/ creativity, connections/expressions of observed world, fine motor strength/endurance

Sensory (water table)
• Materials: water, PVC pipes and connecting joints, measuring cups, buckets, basters
• Rationale: The introduction of the PVC pipes sparked rich thought and planning as children connected and re-routed the pipes, resulting in some very elaborate (not to mention creative and fun) "water machines." However, we had one problem - all the pipes were the same length and just a bit too long to balance on the table. So we decided to cut some in half! Using a hacksaw, many children took turns and cut many of the pipes in two - showing great perseverance and determination! This has sparked an explosion in using real tools, and is discussed more in the "Special Interests" section. As for the water machines, we will continue playing with how to route water in the directions we want it to go, while figuring out how to use corks (or other methods) to stop the flow in other directions.
• Skills: scientific thinking and reasoning (cause & effect), higher level thinking skills (attending, attention span, problem solving, utilization), social interaction/communication skills, fine motor skills, creative thinking, conceptual knowledge (common objects)

Science
• Materials: Spring- and plant-themed books, assorted seeds, magnifying glasses, children's notebooks
• Rationale: This week, Jessica will introduce the topic of seeds and planting, starting with some awareness building about seed planting as well as by taking a look outside around the school to see what plants in nature are currently doing (assuming the snow stays away!).
• Skills: learning about our insects: their anatomy and how to care for them, scientific/higher-level thinking skills, observing and interpreting information about the natural world, generalization skills (connections between insect homes and other animal/human homes).

Math and Manipulatives
• Materials: Snail's Pace Race board game, Busy-Town board game, Memory flip-card game, parquetry blocks (with pattern cards), multi-triangle shape puzzle, numbers and tools puzzles and shape puzzles
• Rationale: The children have really enjoyed the challenge of the larger wood puzzles, working hard (many times with a peer) to figure out which piece goes exactly where. However, they have also enjoyed the Snail's Pace and Busy-Town games. These games have helped many practice taking turns, listening to peers, and following rules!
• Skills: concepts related to geometry/shape, part-to-whole relationships, symmetry one-to-one correspondence, counting, opportunities for collaborative problem solving, executive function skills, rule-following/turn-taking

Language and Literacy
• Materials: Our Alphabet and Name Book, Who Am I book, paper, envelopes, pencils, markers, stamps and stamp pads
• Rationale: Leaving Photobooth open on the computer gave a few children an idea for something new to add to our Who Am I book: funny faces! Currently, the children are trying to either fit as many faces on the screen as possible or taking a picture of their funniest face to add to the book. The table also sees regular visitors drawing and writing their own pictures and small books. We plan to keep the supplies stock to support this independent motivation to create!
• Skills: pre-/early -literacy skills, letter recognition, phonemic awareness, fine-motor coordination/endurance

Dramatic Play (including the "Nook")
• Materials: in the class - doctor's office props (including cot, doctor's tools, x-rays and x-ray box, charts, books), baby dolls, play house furniture and supplies; in the Nook - Brio trains, train tracks, Dr. Drew blocks
• Rationale: The doctor's office continues to see new patients every day! Many of them are baby dolls in need of a shot or bandage, however there is never a shortage of doctors to see the patients. We are planning to add more pictures of our class "in action" to help the children recall previous stories. We will also add "check up charts" as well as "height chart" and scale, as many children have mentioned they remember getting measured during their doctor visits (after talking about how many shots they received, of course!).
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, connections to previous experiences/memory skills, promoting social interactions while foster new and old relationships, practicing various social skills, symbolic representation, connection to prior experiences

Blocks
• Materials: large hollow blocks, small multi-shaped unit blocks, peg people, Dr. Drew blocks
• Rationale: Independent building of large structures continues to be a popular activity for many! Garbage trucks, fire trucks, house big enough for the whole class...the list of things being built is endless. What we hope to do now is encourage more connection to the writing table during their building - "What kind of sign does this _____ need? Let's head to the table and write one quick!" This is a fun and easy way to practice the pre-/early-literacy skills for all children, especially those that are more reluctant to write/drawing in general.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, symbolic representation, concepts related to building/balance/engineering, supporting social relationships/interactions, opportunities for endless dramatic play

Large-motor
• In the gym: The gym will remain the same for one more week, however Betsy and Jessica will begin leading games at the start of gym.
• On the playground: The playground is waking up after its long winter slumber, and as it comes back, we will keep a close eye for additional signs of spring. Also, we explore the melting and thawing taking place...not to mention the return of many more animals! I think it's safe to say...we need to be outside after this past winter!
• Skills: upper-/lower-boy strength, static and dynamic balance, hopping (lower leg strength/coordination), jumping/landing skills, proprioceptive (body-in-motion) skills, spatial-/directional-awareness, propulsion skills

Announcements/Special Interest
• As mentioned in the science section, using saws become a very popular activity last week! We want to build on this excitement/interest in using real tools to do real work! To do that, we have set up a "tools and woodworking" area in the hallway behind room 50 (Amy's class). With a teacher, the children can take turns exploring real tools and gain confidence in using them competently and safely! With this, if you have any scraps of lumber/wood lying in the basement/garage/storage space, we would happily help kick-off your spring-cleaning and take them here!
• It is going to be wet and muddy on the playground for sure this week. Please send appropriate outdoor clothing.

Snack
Monday - Cucumbers & crackers
Tuesday - Rice Chex & raisins
Wednesday - Pretzels & carrots
Thursday - Sushi
Friday - Popcorn
* All snacks served with milk and water, unless otherwise noted *

WINTER Lesson Plan 2-24-14

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mail-delivery.jpg

Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class

February 24-28, 2014

Lead Teaching This Week: Megan

Overview: In the classroom, the writing and dramatic play centers continue to be popular areas focusing around mail carrier and post office play. To continue to encourage and foster this play, at the end of this week we plan to take a field trip to the post office and also mail letters home to our families! We hope that this will help reinforce some of the play occurring in the classroom and deepen the children's understanding of this process. Any experiences that children have outside the classroom with mail, sending letters, or the post office, will allow them to further their play even more in the classroom. If you have an opportunity to mail a letter this week or take a trip to the post office with your child, let us know! We would love to hear about it and for your child to share what they thought of this experience with us. Small groups continued this week on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Groups continue to delve deeper into their topics and we are seeing lots of new interests emerging everyday in each group; storytelling, simple machines, and imaginary animals.

Expressive Art (art table and clay table)

• Materials: art table & easel - color mixing materials (bottles filled with red, blue, yellow, black, and white paint; brushes; mixing pallets; paint samples) large poster board, small boxes; clay table - play dough, wooden tools, metal tools, whicker pieces

• Rationale: The children continue to mix colors at the art table. Many of the children have discovered techniques for making very specific colors by either adding "just a little more" of a certain color, or "a lot more" of another color to make the exact color they want. Some children have even begun naming the colors after they create them. This week, children will have the opportunity to use these colors in a three dimensional design at the art table using various sized boxes. At the play-dough table, the pieces from the dismantled basket will still be available for children to use with the play-dough. So far, the children used these pieces in many ways to decorate creations and also reinforce structures. We have seen many designs, from birthday cakes, to monsters. Further exploration of what these pieces can be used for in their designs will be encouraged.
• Skills: higher level thinking skills (cause and effect, reasoning, problem solving), creative and artistic expression, imagination and invention, fine-motor strength/coordination

Sensory Table (snow table)

• Materials: snow, water, scoops/hand-shovels, buckets and containers of various sizes, spray bottles with colored water, tubes of various sizes
• Rationale: Last week, we had some trouble making ice outside given the warm temperatures! Though temperatures will go back down, the children showed greater interest in moving the water and snow back and forth from container to container, especially the colored water. To foster this, tubes will be made available at the sensory table for children to use as a tool for moving snow and water from container to container, or for other experiments.
• Skills: scientific thinking and reasoning, higher level thinking skills (problem finding and solving, utilization), fine motor strength/endurance, social interaction, imagination and invention, reflection and interpretation, curiosity, creative and artistic expression

Science 
(Including the Nook)
• Materials: "Whose eyes are those?" classroom picture game, children's individual journals, human body charts and books, mirror, Mr. Potato Head dolls, "The touch cup matching game," "Take a closer look game," "I Spy" books, the periscope, kaleidoscopes, light table, x-rays, stethoscopes, other doctor's office tools
• Rationale: Our second sense in our series of sense exploration is sight. Children enjoyed using the kaleidoscopes at the science table, but also around other areas of the classroom. We will continue to discus sight and how it ties in to the last sense we explored; touch, by challenging children to think about how objects can be identified using one sense in absence of the other, or how both senses can work together. Throughout our conversations about the five senses we will discuss how we can use one sense at a time in the absence of another for all the senses (sound without sight, touch without sight, sight without sound, etc.)
 The Nook will be transformed this week in to a sort of doctor's office. X-rays will be available for children to look at while using the light table to incorporate things children are learning about bodies at the science table.
• Skills: self-awareness, high-level thinking skills (comparing/contrasting, observation, symbolic representation)

Language and Literacy

• Materials: books, paper, pencils, staplers, tape, children's photos, Who Am I book, number blocks, mailbox, Our Names/Alphabet book, envelopes, boxes, ink pads and stamps, felt storytelling board and felt pieces
• Rationale: To further the mail carrier and post office play, new flat-rate and shipping envelopes and boxes will be available. Children are using the name/alphabet book as a resource for writing each other's names on letters, which will also continue to be encouraged. Inkpads and rubber stamps will be added for children to use as additional mailing supplies for their envelopes. Also last week, we introduced a felt storytelling board. This quickly became a strong interest in the classroom, as children used it to tell their own stories, or to simply create their own scenes with the different felt pieces.
• Skills: Relationship building, fine motor (strength, coordination, endurance), quantifying (number recognition), pre-literacy (comprehension), language development (communication), creative and artistic expression (playfully uses oral and written language)

Math and Manipulatives
• Materials: puzzles, patterning fruit game, number picture matching, color dominos, number BINGO, 3 dimensional color shapes, LEGOS
• Rationale: Last week, new materials were used at the math table that encouraged building number awareness. Since children are at different levels of understanding this concept, materials such as the picture-number matching game and number BINGO will be valuable supports for each child's individual level. This week, we have a goal of helping the children become more independent in playing the BINGO game so it can be lead by group of children, rather than always by a teacher. At the LEGO table, pairs of children have enjoyed building together. This area has been a point of relationship building and collaboration of ideas in the classroom.
• Skills: recognizing/creating patterns, number recognition, counting, one-to-one correspondence, dexterity, symbolic representation, social interaction, creative thinking

Dramatic Play & Blocks

• Materials: dramatic play - kitchen furniture, dishes, play food (colorful drink caps, rocks, wood cookies), cooking utensils, dress-up clothes and shoes, pieces of fabric, mail carrier clothes (hats and bags), mailing boxes, baby-dolls (with clothes, blankets, bottles, etc.), corded telephones; blocks - large hollow blocks, unit blocks, Dr. Drew blocks, traction pads

• Rationale: This week, themes at the block and dramatic play areas varied day to day and included many different elements. The depth of each idea was reflected in their play. To encourage this creativity to continue, versatile objects, such as the telephones, which have been incorporated into nearly every dramatic play episode, will continue to be available. To elaborate on the mail carrier and post office play that continues in the room, larger boxes for mailing will be available in the area.
• Skills: socio-dramatic/imaginative play, symbolic representation, social skills (compromising skills, negotiation, conflict resolution skills, etc.), promotion of new/existing friendships, large/fine-motor skills, problem-solving

Large Motor

• Materials: In the gym: bumpy slide, monkey bars, basketball hoops, "pitch back" throwing corner, "Jump the River" jumping/leaping platforms (made out of stacked mats); On the playground: snow shovels, buckets, sleds, colored snow, quinzees, snowshoes

• Rationale: Children continue to enjoy the gym set up. The "Jump the River" platforms are a popular area as children explore different ways to propel their bodies forward from stack to stack. The hula-hoops also became an area of interest in the gym that we will continue to encourage. We were lucky to have nice weather this week, so we spent a little less time than usual in the gym to allow for more time outside. Children had the opportunity to sled, build quinzees, and build with snow since it is becoming stickier...finally! If the weather cooperates this week, we hope to continue this building and have more sledding opportunities.
• Skills: dynamic and static balance and coordination, core strength, cardiovascular strength, depth perception, risk-taking, turn-taking, spatial awareness, directional awareness, locomotion skills

Snack
Monday - Birthday snack from last Friday (made by the children)
Oatmeal-raisin cookies & clementine-banana smoothies
Tuesday - Wheat thins
Wednesday - Pretzels and raisins
Thursday - Rice cakes
Friday - Oven fries
* All snacks served with milk and water, unless noted *

WINTER Lesson Plan 2-10-14

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689862-winter7141.gif

Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class
February 10 - 14, 2014
Lead Teaching This Week: Melanie

Overview: It was another cold week here in Minnesota! We spent most of the week inside, but were able to get some sledding in. Our shoveling party with Amy's class on Tuesday helped us grow our quinzee "village" on the playground. Thanks to those of you who stopped by to help! The rest of the week we were able to extend gym time and play some fun games. Small groups also started this week, and had an energetic, successful first week: topics include Storytelling, Simple Machines, and Imagination Exploration: Animals Edition. With the start of small groups came the return of open snack, to give the children more time for focus groups and free play. Earlier in the week we started talking about community, what it means to us, and what communities we are a part of. We discussed the fact that our school is one of our communities. To build community within our school, we joined Amy's class for large group on Friday. We weren't able to play outside on Friday, but got a bit of fresh air on our walk to the mailbox to mail our letter to Dr. Drew. We can't wait to get a letter back from him!

Expressive Art (art table and clay table)
• Materials: art table - cotton/wool, packing peanuts, sticks/twigs, pine cones/needles, bottle caps, silver tinsel, glue, markers, pencils; art table & easel - color mixing materials (bottles filled with red, blue, yellow, black, and white paint; brushes; mixing pallets); clay table - play dough, clay, wooden tools, metal tools
• Rationale: The children have been hard at work turning their winter collage into a scene from the book The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats. They looked through the book several times and noticed the colors the illustrator used to tell this winter tale. The children had interesting discussions about what changes color with the seasons and what does not. To see how our collage is evolving and learn more, check out the weekly docs page on the website. Next, the children will make their own color swatch palate display of paint colors that they have mixed that they think represents the colors of winter. This will be hung up for everyone to see in the art area.
• Skills: higher level thinking skills (cause and effect, reasoning, problem solving, matching, ordering), artistic expression, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination

Sensory Table (snow table)
• Materials: Pine cones, bottle caps, sticks/twigs, scoops/hand-shovels, buckets (small and large), ice cubes (of various shapes and sizes), spray bottles, large ice chunks, tubs of water, mittens and gloves, pictures of structures made out of ice & snow (quinzees, igloos, etc.)
• Rationale: The children are still really engaged in experimenting with melting and freezing. They used spray bottles of water of varying temperatures to see if they could make the ice and snow melt or stick together. They also added colored water to the mixture, and froze containers of different sizes and shapes to see how it would freeze. This week they froze gems in the water to see what would happen. We will continue this exploration to better understand the mysteries of snow and ice by giving children an opportunity to freeze new and different objects in water. Pictures of structures built out of ice and snow will be hung near the sensory table for inspiration and observation.
• Skills: scientific thinking and reasoning, higher level thinking skills (problem finding and solving, utilization), motor strength/endurance, social interaction

Science
• Materials: "Whose hands are those?" classroom picture game, children's individual journals, human body charts and books, mirror, Mr. Potato Head dolls, "The touch cup matching game"
• Rationale: Last week, we started talking about the first of five senses: our sense of touch. We took pictures of all of the children's hands and have a running slide show on the computer that the children can watch and try to guess "Whose hands are those?" We will use these pictures to examine how our unique hands relate to the "Who Am I?" question. We added a new game that the children can play, "The touch cup matching game." Different objects are hidden inside the cups and children have to reach in and guess what's inside using only their sense of touch. Then, they have to match what they think is inside to pictures on a board in front of the cups. Throughout our conversations about the five senses we will discuss how we can use one sense at a time in the absence of another (sound without sight, touch without sight, sight without sound, etc.)
• Skills: self-awareness, high-level thinking skills (comparing/contrasting, observation, symbolic representation), imaginative/creative play, fine motor skills (dexterity)

Language and Literacy
• Materials: books, paper, pencils, staplers, tape, envelopes, children's photos, Who Am I book, number blocks, mailbox
• Rationale: Letter writing continues! This past week, we wrote a letter to Amy's class and thank you letters to the parents who visited our classroom. We also wrote a letter to Dr. Drew in Florida, thanking him for the new set of blocks that he sent us. We are excited to hear back from him, and send letters in the mail to our own homes (later in the week). We will use a calendar to chart how long it takes our letter to Dr. Drew to reach Florida, and how long it takes to send letters from The Lab School to our homes. The addition of a mailbox to this area of the classroom will support the writing (and mailing) of many more letters!
• Skills: Relationship building, fine motor (strength, coordination, endurance), quantifying (number recognition), pre-literacy, communication

Math and Manipulatives (including The Nook)
• Materials: puzzles, colored egg-shell peg boards, patterning pictures, number picture matching, LEGOS, translucent DUPLOS, peg people, broken laundry basket
• Rationale: Patterns are still the focus at the math table. Children are exploring this topic by recognizing "patterns in nature" through pictures and experimenting with patterns using the colored egg-shell peg boards. Also, last week we had a wicker laundry basket break in the dramatic play area and considered composting it. However, instead of getting rid of it, we are putting it out for the children to practice their measuring and comparison skills by dismantling it. As they take off pieces, there are bins to sort the pieces by length - requiring them to notice similarities and differences between the pieces.
At the LEGO table, pairs of children enjoyed building together. In the Nook, children created elaborate structures out of DUPLOS on the light table. This week, we will add the peg people to this area to support the development of more elaborate stories inspired by these constructions.
• Skills: recognizing/creating patterns, number recognition, counting, one-to-one correspondence, dexterity, symbolic representation, matching, grouping, ordering, social interaction, creative thinking, curiosity

Dramatic Play & Blocks
• Materials: dramatic play - kitchen furniture, dishes, play food (colorful drink caps, rocks, wood cookies), cooking utensils, dress-up clothes and shoes, pieces of fabric, baby-dolls (with clothes, blankets, bottles, etc.), corded telephones; blocks - large hollow blocks, unit blocks, Dr. Drew blocks, traction pads
• Rationale: Dramatic play and blocks have been immensely popular areas of the classroom lately. "Candy store" and "Pizza shop" continue to be play themes that the children enjoy acting out. The corded telephones are included in nearly every scenario the children act out, including the most recent, hair salon and cooking class. The use of telephones supports numerous social skills and provides excellent opportunities for problem solving and conflict resolution.
• Skills: socio-dramatic/imaginative play, symbolic representation, social skills (e.g. compromising skills, negotiation, conflict resolution skills, etc.), promotion of new/existing friendships, large/fine-motor skills, problem-solving

Large Motor
• Materials: In the gym: bumpy slide, monkey bars, basketball hoops, "pitch back" throwing corner, "Jump the River" jumping/leaping platforms (made out of stacked mats) On the playground: snow shovels, buckets, sleds, colored snow, quinzees, snowshoes
• Rationale: Gym games last week included "Sleeping Children" (an old favorite); games that gave children opportunities to practice their throwing and kicking skills; and a game that challenged them to step to the beat of a drum! We will continue leading fun and challenging activities. We also have a new gym set-up! The bumpy slide is back, we have expanded on the interest in the jumping/leaping games, and gave ourselves more open space to try our hands at basketball. We anticipate this set-up will be a hit, just like the last one! Colored snow has been added to the playground and it will be interesting to see how the children choose to use it.
• Skills: dynamic and static balance and coordination, core strength, cardiovascular strength, depth perception, risk-taking, propulsion skills (pedaling trikes), risk-taking, turn-taking, spatial awareness, directional awareness, locomotion skills

Snack
Monday - Pretzels & celery sticks
Tuesday - Rice chex
Wednesday - Sunbutter & bagels
Thursday - Rice cakes & grapefruit
Friday- Sweet potato & black bean quesadillas
* All snacks served with choice of milk or water unless noted *

WINTER Lesson Plan 1-27-2014

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class

January 27 - February 7, 2014
Lead Teaching This Week: Team teaching week 1

Overview: Another week of cold temps keep inside for most of the week, however it didn't dampen the spirits of the children! We spent some extra time in the gym playing some fun group games and also got as much "sledding" in as possible on our indoor sledding/sliding hill! Needless to say, we found fun and productive ways to channel the extra energy that can come with staying inside. The time inside has also allowed our group to continue strengthening their social connections, as well as start taking a closer look at the student teacher focus groups: colors of winter, and the science of freezing and melting. We will continue looking at these topics this week, extending on the children's ideas from the previous week. We will also begin talking about starting small groups once again. What's that old adage...time flies when it's freezing cold? Having fun? In this case...I think both are true!

Expressive Art (art table and clay table)

• Materials: art table - winter collage materials (cotton/wool, packing peanuts, sticks/twigs, pine cones/needles, blue and white bottle caps, silver tinsel, etc.), glue, markers, pencils; art table & easel - color mixing materials (bottles filled with red, blue, yellow, black, and white paint; brushes; mixing pallets); clay table - clay, wooden tools, small tiles
• Rationale: The children have started working on a new winter collage as we have begun to talk about the colors of winter. They have observed that the colors and scenery outside have changed since earlier this winter when they worked on their first winter collage. So far the new collage includes snow, bird nests, sticks, bridges, pinecones, and much more. After making observations about the colors we saw outside and examining photographs of winter scenes, we started mixing paint colors to create colors that match the season. We will continue with color mixing and will make these newly created colors available for the children to use at the easel, and will hang paint swatches of the children's color creations near the easel for analysis and inspiration.
• Skills: artistic expression, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, connections/observations of the real world, symbolic representation, cause and effect, comparison skills, reasoning skills, collaboration/problem-solving skills

Sensory Table (snow table)
• Materials: snow, scoops/hand-shovels, buckets (small and large), ice cubes (of various shapes and sizes), large ice chunks, tubs of water 

• Rationale: The children continue to have fun building at the sensory table with the snow and ice. Now, a new interest has sparked - the melting of ice. To foster this, tubs of water will be placed around the sensory table to be used as children conduct experiments. The tubs will also be available for construction purposes (e.g. making the snow stickier to allow for more sturdy structures and/or making "ice streams," which became an area of interest one day last week at the sensory table).
• Skills: scientific thinking and reasoning, concepts related to temperature/texture/changing of physical states (i.e. melting from a solid to a liquid), fine-motor strength/endurance (related to scooping/shoveling), hypothesis creating/testing

Science
• Materials: human body charts and books, mirror, Mr. Potato Head dolls, "Who do you see?" classroom picture game, Photobooth, children's individual journals
• Rationale: Photobooth on the classroom computer is still a big hit. Children are experimenting with how to position themselves to fit into the photos that they are taking. This is encouraging problem solving when there are five children who all want to fit into the same picture. How far do they need to back up for everyone to fit when their first instinct is to move in closer? We will continue to use these pictures to examine our facial features and how our unique features relate to "Who Am I?" We recently brought back out the children's individual journals, which they have been excited to use.
• Skills: self-awareness, high-level thinking/reasoning skills, comparing/contrasting skills, observations, symbolic representation, imaginative/creative play

Language and Literacy


• Materials: books, paper, pencils, staplers, tape, envelopes, children's photos, Who Am I book, number blocks
• Rationale: Last Friday, our class began writing a letter to Beezly (the Bird-Monster puppet that "lives" with Barb), inviting him back to class. We will finish this letter on Monday and deliver it to Barb and Beezly, in hopes that they will not only come to visit, but also write us back. We anticipate this will lead to an explosion of letter writing at the writing table!
• Skills: promote social skills and a sense of classroom community, pre-/early literacy skills, letter recognition (with name writing), fine-motor coordination/strength

Math and Manipulatives (including The Nook)


• Materials: puzzles, colored egg-shell peg boards, patterning pictures, number picture matching, LEGOS, translucent DUPLOS

• Rationale: A main focus at the math table (as well as during other times of the day) has been the discussion of patterns. To foster this, children will be encouraged to experiment with patterns by using the colored egg-shell peg boards, as well as other materials found throughout the classroom. Pictures of "patterns in nature" and other patterns we might find in our world will also be available at the math table to provide inspiration and spark discussion about to recognize and/or make a pattern.
The LEGO table continues to be a very frequented spot in the classroom. Popular themes there include construction of various vehicles as well as buildings - specifically fire stations and police stations. Lots of high quality group collaboration has occurred in the Nook where the DUPLOS and light table are set up. The children worked together to build various structures, as well as brought attention to the color patterns they made using the DUPLOS.
• Skills: recognizing/creating patterns, number recognition, concepts related to quantity, counting, one-to-one correspondence, dexterity, symbolic representation

Dramatic Play & Blocks
• Materials: dramatic play - kitchen furniture, dishes, play food (colorful drink caps, rocks, wood cookies), cooking utensils, dress-up clothes and shoes, pieces of fabric, baby-dolls (with clothes, blankets, bottles, etc.); blocks - large hollow blocks, unit blocks, traction pads
• Rationale: Because of the cold temps, the classroom sledding hill once again saw many visitors last week. However, the children have become quite proficient with its construction, as we have had to set it up and take it down several times for the consideration of the afternoon class. With this practice, the children have thought critically about how to set up the hill to make it "as big as possible!" This has also led to the revisiting of ramps and inclines with mini pool balls and bowling pins (which dominated the a large portion of the building last fall). We will continue to explore/revisit the topic of inclines by using the children's prior knowledge to go deeper into this investigation.
• Skills: socio-dramatic/imaginative play, symbolic representation, social skills (e.g. compromising skills, negotiation, conflict resolution skills, etc.), promotion of new/existing friendships, large/fine-motor skills, problem-solving,

Large Motor
• Materials: In the Gym: A-frame balance beam bridge, beanbag pit, obstacle course, tricycles, climbing wall; On the Playground: snow shovels, buckets, play dishes, scoops, sleds (for pulling a friend AND for sledding!)
• Rationale: The track around the perimeter of the gym has led to many laps being ridden and/or ran by the children - allowing everyone to use their whole bodies and use up that extra energy. The "obstacle course" of crawling through the hula-hoops and crossing the balance beam to the A-frame jumping platform has been equally as popular. The children really enjoy the current gym set-up, and continue to challenge themselves daily - which is good, because by the looks of it, we'll be staying in quite a bit this week!
• Skills: dynamic and static balance and coordination, core strength, cardiovascular strength, depth perception, risk-taking, propulsion skills (pedaling trikes), risk-taking, turn-taking, spatial awareness, locomotion skills

Special Interest
• NO SCHOOL: Monday, January 27 - due to the severe cold temps
• GYM JAM! this Saturday, Feb 1 from 6.30-8.30p. Come and play!!
• CJ's mom, Sumika, will join us on Friday to talk about how their family celebrates the Chinese New Year. Their family has some important traditions and food they would like to share with everyone. We look forward to her visit!

Snack
Monday - No School
Tuesday - Grapefruit & pretzels
Wednesday - Applesauce & rice Chex
Thursday - Trail mix
Friday- Popcorn (made by the children!)
**All snacks served with a choice of milk and water, unless noted**

WINTER Lesson Plan 1-20-14

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class

January 20 - 24, 2014
Lead Teaching This Week: Ross

Overview: It is quite clear that the children were ready to be back and school! They have quickly picked up where they left off - reconnecting with old friends, as well as making new friends in our first two weeks back. Also, Megan and Melanie quickly settled into the daily routines while building rapport with all the children! The energy in the classroom has been high, yet productive. Even with the cold temps thwarting our attempts to go outside more than a few times, the children have still gotten their fill of sledding...in the classroom! That's right, we constructed our own indoor sledding hill (take a look we the "Weekly Docs" for further details). We'll continue elaborating on these inventive structures, as well as begin taking a closer look at some of the unique and beautiful characteristics of winter as Megan and Melanie introduce some investigations related to everyone's favorite season.

Expressive Art (art table and clay table)

• Materials: art table - winter collage materials (cotton, packing peanuts, sticks/twigs, white stones, etc.), glue, duct tape, markers, pencils; easel - color mixing materials (bottles filled with red, blue, yellow, black, and white paint; brushes; mixing pallets); clay table - clay, wooden tools, wire, small tiles
• Rationale: art table - The winter collage saw several additions during the first two weeks back: lots of white paint, tinsel in the "trees," wool and packing peanuts scattered throughout. However, the most popular activity was the creation of "warm, cozy houses" from small floor tiles. This has also lead to some very interesting problem solving, as the glue is not initially strong enough to hold up the tiles. Groups of children have worked together, gluing and taping walls in hopes that they will dry over night so further decoration can be added. We'll focusing on this construction this week, as well as add some small tiles to the clay table to inspire new/additional building there.
• Skills: artistic expression, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, connections/observations of the real world, symbolic representation, cause and effect, comparison skills, reasoning skills, collaboration/problem-solving skills

Sensory Table (snow table)
• Materials: snow, scoops/hand-shovels, buckets (small and large), ice cubes
• Rationale: There is no shortage of snow for the sensory table, that's for sure! We have seen some very interesting snow-castle-building taking place, and with the addition of the glass gems, the structures have grown in their detail. To foster this interest in building, as well as make connections to the science that comes with winter, we will introduce the addition of ice cubes to the table. The children will be a part of the ice cube making process - eventually having discussions about: how to best make ice; why/how does ice actually form; in what ways can we use the ice cubes.
• Skills: scientific thinking and reasoning, concepts related to temperature/texture/changing of physical states (i.e. melting from a solid to a liquid), fine-motor strength/endurance (related to scooping/shoveling), hypothesis creating/testing

Science
• Materials: human body charts and books, Mr. Potato Head dolls, "Who do you see?" classroom picture game, Photobooth
• Rationale: The Mr. Potato Head dolls helped build the awareness about looking at, as well as talking about, the many parts of our face that make us different/unique, however it was the introduction of Photobooth on the classroom computer. The children have excitedly crowded around the screen and tried to get themselves into one of the many snapshots we've taken. We will use these pictures to start taking a closer look at our various facial features, as well as go deeper into our "Who Am I?" focus.
• Skills: self-awareness, high-level thinking/reasoning skills, comparing/contrasting skills, observations, symbolic representation, imaginative/creative play

Language and Literacy


• Materials: books, paper, pencils, staplers, tape, envelopes, children's photos, Who Am I book, number blocks
• Rationale: The literacy table saw many visitors in need of making very important notes - mainly "Hands Off" signs for the various creations being made around the room. The teachers will add a "template" for making this sign, as well as begin adding more key words and pictures to help the children independently create signs and notes for the daily play themes.
• Skills: promote social skills and a sense of classroom community, pre-/early literacy skills, letter recognition (with name writing), fine-motor coordination/strength

Math and Manipulatives (including The Nook)


• Materials: new puzzles, colored egg-shell peg boards, number picture matching, LEGOS, translucent DUPLOS
• Rationale: The children have enjoyed playing the number matching and patterning games at the math table, and to continue fostering those skills, the teachers will lead more teacher-facilitated games throughout the week. However, the LEGO table has been a very popular spot - seeing many visitors each day. Over the course of last week, a large group of children returned to the table daily to continued adding to their cooperatively built grocery store (I guess making it a true co-op!). We will continue supporting this play, as well as think about ways to tie in our focus on patterns and number recognition as the children continue constructing.
• Skills: recognizing/creating patterns, number recognition, concepts related to quantity, counting, one-to-one correspondence, dexterity, symbolic representation

Dramatic Play & Blocks
• Materials: dramatic play - kitchen furniture, dishes, play food (colorful drink caps, rocks, wood cookies), cooking utensils, dress-up clothes and shoes, pieces of fabric, baby-dolls (with clothes, blankets, bottles, etc.); blocks - large hollow blocks, unit blocks, traction pads
• Rationale: The house continues to see many visitors coming to set-up/host "food parties" for both people and animals alike. Recently, however, food is being delivered to the large "sledding hill" that was built in the back of the classroom. Because we haven't been able to go out and actually sled, we decided to bring the sledding indoors. The children continue to test out various "sleds" (pieces of fabric from the dress-up shelf) and then hop in line so they can have a turn slide down the large hollow block ramp! We are definitely getting out large-motor play in with this new addition!
• Skills: socio-dramatic/imaginative play, symbolic representation, social skills (e.g. compromising skills, negotiation, conflict resolution skills, etc.), promotion of new/existing friendships, large/fine-motor skills, problem-solving,

Large Motor
• Materials: In the Gym: A-frame balance beam bridge, beanbag pit, obstacle course, tricycles, climbing wall; On the Playground: snow shovels, buckets, play dishes, scoops, sleds (for pulling a friend AND for sledding!)
• Rationale: The new gym set up is designed to complement the children's large motor experiences outside. Tricycles have been provided for the children since it is too snowy to bike on the playground, and the balance beam and jumping pit will allow the children to practice dynamic balance without the added bulk of their winter clothing.
• Skills: dynamic and static balance and coordination, core strength, cardiovascular strength, depth perception, risk-taking, propulsion skills (pedaling trikes), risk-taking, turn-taking, spatial awareness, locomotion skills

Special Interest
NO SCHOOL: Monday, January 20 - Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
• GYM JAM! is happening soon - Saturday, Feb 1 from 6.30-8.30p
• Augie's grandparents will join at large group on Friday - sharing a favorite book for Augie's upcoming birthday. As a reminder, families are welcome and encourage to come in and share in our class! Talk with Ross if you're interested.

Snack
Monday - No School
Tuesday - Carrots & dip
Wednesday - Rice chex & raisins
Thursday - Birthday Snack from Kassidy & Pasta (Cooking project)
Friday - Birthday Snack from Augie
**All snacks served with a choice of milk and water, unless noted**

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class

January 6 - 17, 2013

Lead Teaching This Week: Ross

Overview: Welcome back everyone and happy 2014!! I hope your time away from school was relaxing, restorative, and enjoyable...even with the extra day on Monday! Because we have been away for quite some time, we will take the first few days back to get settled into our daily schedule as well as reconnect with one another: especially our new student teachers Megan and Melanie. To make a comfortable and smooth adjustment back to school, we will have several familiar materials available: the playhouse and dress-up clothes in the dramatic play area, familiar tools and materials at the clay table, and the Styrofoam project with created at the art table at the end of the fall session. We will also continue our focus this year's conceptual organizer of "Who Am I?" with a new investigation at the science table. We're excited to start our winter session and are glad to have you all back!

Expressive Art (art table and clay table)

• Materials: art table - winter collage materials (cotton, packing peanuts, sticks/twigs, white stones, etc.), glue, markers, pencils; easel - color mixing materials (bottles filled with red, blue, yellow, black, and white paint; brushes; mixing pallets); clay table - clay, wooden tools, wire
• Rationale: At the end of the fall session, a group of children helped create a model of the outdoors by painting a large piece of Styrofoam and adding sticks, leaves, and feathers. The outdoors have changed quite a bit since we left school, and we are inviting the children to "update" the creation with new materials. We will also have pieces of cardstock available to allow the creation of other collages. At the easel, we will continue our study of color mixing. At the clay table: The clay table, new provocation questions will be asked to help create, as well as retell, stories using this amazing material.
• Skills: artistic expression, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, connections/observations of the real world, symbolic representation, color recognition, cause and effect (with color mixing), comparison skills, reasoning skills

Sensory Table (snow table)
• Materials: snow, scoops/hand-shovels, buckets (small and large)
• Rationale: There is no mistaking it - winter is upon us! We have snow (...lots of snow...) on the ground, and plan to bring it inside to explore its various physical properties (i.e. "How does it feel on your bare hands?" "How does the snow change once it's been inside?" "How many ways can we change the snow?"). True, the children will be able to play with it outside, however we are need to get out hands "dirty" (or cold rather), and taking a closer look at the snow and all its possibilities!
• Skills: scientific thinking and reasoning, concepts related to temperature/texture/changing of physical states (i.e. melting from a solid to a liquid), fine-motor strength/endurance (related to scooping/shoveling), hypothesis creating/testing

Science
• Materials: human body charts and books, Mr. Potato Head dolls, "Who do you see?" classroom picture game
• Rationale: In the fall we beginning investigating the question, "Who Am I?" by looking at pictures of our classmates as well as learning about how draw self portraits. Now we will take a closer look at the specific features that make us who we are. One way we will explore this closer is have a picture identifying game - covering parts of our classmates' pictures to see if we can recognize who is in the picture. Another way will be the creation of different faces using the Mr. Potato Head dolls - "How many different faces can we make using the different eyes, nose, and mouth pieces?"
• Skills: self-awareness, high-level thinking/reasoning skills, comparing/contrasting skills, observations, symbolic representation, imaginative/creative play

Language and Literacy


• Materials: books, paper, pencils, staplers, tape, envelopes, children's photos, Who Am I book, number blocks
• Rationale: To help foster the reconnection between the children, the teachers will revisit writing letters with the children; specifically helping with the facilitation of addressing and signing of the letters. The teachers will also encourage the children to add new drawings and contributions to our Who Am I book: helping the children recall the names of their classmates, as well as hopefully sparking new connections between peers.
• Skills: promote social skills and a sense of classroom community, pre-/early literacy skills, letter recognition (with name writing), fine-motor coordination/strength

Math and Manipulatives (including The Nook)


• Materials: new puzzles, colored egg-shell peg boards, number picture matching, LEGOS, translucent DUPLOS
• Rationale: One area with a new focus will be the math. To begin the winter session, we will explore number/quantity recognition and patterning. The games and materials in the area will challenge children to recognize and create the various patterns. They will also help the children make the connection between the written numbers and the corresponding number of materials. In the cave, LEGOS will be available for the children to build and create with...and knowing the popularity of this material, the will be a hit! We have also added translucent DUPLOS to the Nook for addition building fun!
• Skills: recognizing/creating patterns, number recognition, concepts related to quantity, counting, one-to-one correspondence, dexterity, symbolic representation

Dramatic Play
• Materials: kitchen furniture, dishes, play food (colorful drink caps, rocks, wood cookies), cooking utensils, dress-up clothes and shoes, pieces of fabric, baby-dolls (with clothes, blankets, bottles, etc.)
• Rationale: The house was clearly a favorite area during the fall; seeing many visitors every day. We will keep the set up familiar for the first few weeks, however will observe their play closely to help bring in a new play theme.
• Skills: socio-dramatic/imaginative play, symbolic representation, social skills (e.g. compromising skills, negotiation, conflict resolution skills, etc.), promotion of new/existing friendships

Blocks


• Materials: large hollow blocks, unit blocks, traction pads, steering wheels
• Rationale: The block area was another very popular area in the fall. We will have the basic building materials on the large-block side of the room; letting the children reenact stories from the fall or create new stories.
• Skills: large/fine-motor skills, symbolic representation, connection to focus on animal homes, problem-solving, social relationships, negotiation, compromise, collaboration, socio-dramatic play

Large Motor
• Materials: In the Gym: monkey bars, "Bumpy Slide," climbing stairs, jumping "square," climbing bars. On the Playground: snow shovels, buckets, play dishes, scoops, sleds (for pulling around the playground - NO SLEDDING YET).
• Rationale: With the colder weather upon us, the gym will become a main source of our large-motor activity during the winter session. We will try to get outside every day, however with the dressing of 19 children in full snowsuits, we sometimes get less time outside then desired! As for our initial focus in the gym, we want to foster full body strength through climbing and jumping activities. We will also support proprioceptive and sensory skills as the children take turn-after-turn on the "Bumpy Slide." We will also continue to start each trip to the gym with a teacher-facilitated activity. Outside, the children will build plenty of strength as they trek around the snow-covered playground in their full snow gear! The sleds will come out after the first few days of returning, however only be used for towing and pulling one another around the playground. We want to make sure everyone, including our new student teaching team, feels settled and ready for the non-stop fun and excitement that comes with the sledding hill!
• Skills: balance, large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-hand/eye-foot coordination, body in motion/space (i.e. proprioception), cardiovascular strength, depth perception, risk-taking, collaborative play, propulsion skills (kicking), social skills (i.e. negotiation, compromise, turn-taking)

Special Interest
• Be sure to stop down and meet our new student teachers; they're very excited to get started and work with your children!
• A reminder about parking: please remember to park your car in an angled spot (or parking meter) if you are planning to walk in with your child. Leaving your car unattended and parked along the curb during drop-off (and pick-up) makes it extremely challenging to get the cars through our now very narrow driveway.
NO SCHOOL: Monday, January 20 - Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
• Please send your child's snow gear with them every day! Some days it might warm up to just above zero by the time we plan to head outside, and it's always easiest to get your child into their own gear. Also, labeling helps ensure your child's gear goes home with them each day!

Snack
Monday - NO SCHOOL (it's too cold!)
Tuesday - Wheat thins & milk
Wednesday - Rice chex & raisins
Thursday - Apples & milk
Friday - Rice cakes & raisins
**All snacks served with a choice of milk and water, unless noted**

FALL Lesson Plan 11-18-13 (2wk)

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class

November 18-29, 2013

Lead Teaching This Week: Emily

Overview: The colder weather last week got the children excited for winter to come! Getting ready to go outside will give the children more time to learn self-help skills like zipping jackets and pulling on boots. With the colder weather, please remember to send a winter jacket, hats, gloves or mittens, as well as snow pants and boots for especially chilly days. To draw the last couple days of fall into our classroom, the children will be able to admire leaf collages hanging in the windows that were created last week as well as create paint colors to match the remaining leaves at the art table. The next two weeks will be used to culminate small groups by completing final projects--and the children are very excited to share what they have been learning with the rest of the class!

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)

• Materials: easel - mixed paints from the art table, paintbrushes, paper; art table - white, black, and primary colored paints, mixing trays, paintbrushes, Montessori color tiles, paper, water cups for rinsing brushes; clay table - clay, supportive tools (rolling pins, mallets, wood knives, pizza cutters, wire), colored glass gems, seashells
• Rationale: Last week we worked on creating lighter and darker shades of the colors of the rainbow, and will continue to mix these colors at the art table in order to replace the primary colors at the easel. One child recently used paints she thoughtfully mixed to paint a leaf from the science table, making sure to get all the details! We will encourage more children to do similar activities. As for the clay table, the children have been exposed to a variety of tools and had time to explore with the clay itself. Adding glass gems and seashells will help them extend their stories and representational creations.
• Skills: color recognition, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, artistic expression, symbolic representation, social skills, imaginative/creative play, prediction

Sensory (water table)

• Materials: pitchers, plastic containers, colored glass gems, rocks, corks, ping-pong balls, plastic toy boats, found pieces of plastic, rubber vehicles, natural materials (leaves, sticks, etc.)
• Rationale: Sinking and floating experiments took place every day last week. At large group the children helped a teacher count how many glass gems it would take to sink a toy boat. The children will have a chance to discover more about why certain objects sink and other objects float, starting to look at the "why" certain items float while others sink.
• Skills: large/fine motor, hand-eye coordination, math concepts including spatial awareness/counting/comparing-contrasting/observation, prediction, creativity

Science

• Materials: magnifying glasses, leaves, paper, black pens, clipboards, computer, books about animals in winter
• Rationale: Most of the leaves the children brought into the classroom have been pressed and will be hanging in the classroom windows this week. Since the trees are almost empty of their leaves we will be able to continue pressing leaves. However, there are also less frequent sightings of other animals around the school, so the focus of the science table will move to wintering habits of animals other than birds. We will read about where animals go for the colder months and how they prepare to stay warm and search the Internet for pictures of homes for animals that stick around for winter.)
• Skills: scientific awareness building and investigation skills, observation skills, foster sense of school/classroom community

Dramatic Play (and the cave)

• Materials: "house" furniture (e.g. stove, fridge, sink, and cupboard), peg people, wooden cars, plates, pretend food, animal print fabrics, habitat materials, baby-dolls and care supplies, string and paper, wood chips, small hand baskets
• Rationale: Recently, the peg people and wooden cars were moved to the dollhouse so the children could discover new ways to play with them. The stuffed animals in the middle cave will be removed to make the space available for more pretend play. The dramatic play area recently transformed into a place for the children to "Trick or Treat" using various small objects from the classroom. Extra hand baskets will allow the children to move around more freely and carry these objects efficiently.
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, symbolic representation, fostering social relationships

Math and Manipulatives

• Materials: bug matching game, puzzles, colored animal sorting set, scale, glass gems, ping-pong balls, rocks, sunflower seeds, light table, colored plastic shapes
• Rationale: A number puzzle has helped some children develop their number recognition skills along with one-to-one correspondence. Using the smaller objects provided, teachers will facilitate games of matching weight and number on each side of the scale to continue development of these skills.
• Skills: patterning (with plastic shapes at the light table), counting, one-to-one correspondence, sorting, opportunities for collaborative problem solving, prediction, number and number recognition

Language and Literacy

• Materials: pencils, markers, paper, envelopes, staplers, tape, Classmate Picture Drawer, sandpaper letters

• Rationale: We recently said goodbye to the dancers who joined our large group on Mondays, and some children are still working on writing thank you notes to them. An increased interest in name-writing has resulted from signing these notes, and the children will work with teachers to continue practicing how to write their names.
• Skills: pre-/early-literacy skills, letter recognition, community building, fine-motor coordination/endurance (as children hand muscles grow stronger with holding writing utensils)

Blocks

• Materials: Multi-shaped unit blocks, ramps, large hollow blocks, marbles, small wooden bowling pins, paper and markers for creating maps and plans, traction pads 

• Rationale: Imaginations have been running wild with many successful outcomes, such as delivery vehicles and tiger cages. Some children are especially interested in mapping out their constructions with the writing materials, which will stay in the block area this week. We hope to recreate some of these creations using the blueprints.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, concepts of balance and gravity, problem solving skills (trial and error), hypothesis creating and testing, planning, pre-/early-literacy skills, imaginative/creative play

Large Motor

• Materials: GYM: monkey bars with rope swings, bumpy slide, Pedalo, A-frame bridge with ladder bridge;
PLAYGROUND: climber, slides, swings, shovels/rakes, buckets, tricycles, wagons, cones

• Rationale: Gym time has been filled with energy and big movements. The children especially enjoy playing a game called "Museum Guard" where they become "statues" standing very still when the "guard" turns to make sure the museum is safe. We will have limited gym time this week, but we hope to get outside to the playground earlier to make up for it. Our playground has disappeared beneath another layer of leaves and the children have enjoyed jumping into fresh leaf piles. Another leaf-raking party is in the works! Teachers will also work with the children to beautify our two stick houses by clearing out some clutter and rearrange the sticks to make them more stable and secure.
• Skills: large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination, body in motion (i.e. jumping and sliding), cardiovascular strength, depth perception, balance, turn taking, social skills

Special Interest (cooking projects, field trips, visitors, etc.)

- Small groups are starting to wrap up this week - be sure to talk with your child about their small group project!
- Please continue to send in leaves to add to our class leaf collage and pictures of animals that live around your home to add to the "Who Am I?" book.
- A reminder that there is no school Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday of this week, as well as Thursday and Friday of next week.
- Our playground is currently covered in leaves--again! We would like to invite you to join us for another leaf raking party on Tuesday, November 19th. This one is a bit more informal, as it's just our class, but we hope you can come!
- Michonne (Augie's mom) and Sheila will be facilitating a cooking project on Tuesday the 26th, making vegetable soup with the children!

Snack

November 18-22 November 25-29
Monday - 
Pasta & red sauce Monday - Pretzels
Tuesday - 
Crackers & raisins Tuesday - Vegetable Soup
Wednesday - No school Wednesday -
Chex & apple slices
Thursday - No school
 Thursday - No school
Friday - No school Friday - No school

* All snacks served with milk and water unless noted *

FALL Lesson Plan 11-11-13

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class
November 11th-15th, 2013
Lead Teaching This Week: Michaela

Overview: With picture day and the first snow fall of the year, last week proved to be an exciting one! Children got to meet Steve the photographer and fully enjoyed his jokes and magic tricks. Despite the snowfall, we continued our fall theme by making pumpkin seeds and pumpkin smoothies. In order to further celebrate the changing season, and preserve some fall beauty, we learned how to press leaves last week. This week we will continue to collect and press leaves, using them to create a class leaf collage. We have also started looking at the topic of self-portraits - working on drawing our full bodies/selves at large group. With the awareness of moving our bodies coming from our weekly visits from the dance students, the children are now thinking more intentionally about the parts of their bodies and how that actually looks - as reflected by the drawings they made.

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)
• Materials: easel - primary colored paints; art table - white, black and primary colored paints, mixing trays, paintbrushes, Montessori color tiles, paper, leftover paint from the paint mixing project; clay table - clay, supportive tools (rolling pins, mallets, wood knives, pizza cutters, wire)
• Rationale: Last week we added white and black paint to the color mixing table to allow children to experiment with shades of color again. Some children began making their favorite colors to add to the "Who Am I" book we have been creating as a class. This week we will continue to give children the opportunity to add their page in the book. We will also use the Montessori color tiles to challenge some children to make specific colors using the knowledge they have built with exploring color mixing in past weeks. The teachers have also saved the different shade of paint made by children at the paint mixing table over the past few weeks. We plan on creating a large class painting in order to use up the paint in a meaningful way. Frances will be joining our class to work on some self-portraits at the clay table.
• Skills: color recognition, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, artistic expression, symbolic representation, social skills, imaginative/creative play, prediction

Sensory (water table)
• Materials: pitchers, small and large bottles/jugs, gems, rocks, corks, ping-pong balls, plastic boats, wooden planks, tin-foil (for boat making)
• Rationale: Children began exploring the concept of sinking and floating at the water table last week. We will continue our exploration of sinking and floating this week by adding some materials to make our own boats. Teachers will invite children to see how many items it takes to sink a boat, and to notice the differences between objects that sink and objects that float. Teachers will also do some sinking and floating demonstrations at large group using an aquarium, toy boats, and materials with various buoyancies.
• Skills: large/fine motor, hand-eye coordination, math concepts including spatial awareness/counting/comparing-contrasting, prediction

Science
• Materials: Magnifying glasses, leaves, newspaper, books, books about leaves, paper, pencils
• Rationale: With "turkey sightings" becoming less and less frequent, and all the changes that come with the Autumn season, we have decided to transition the science area to a leaf information and pressing center. We talked a little about leaves in the classroom and on field trips but now we will delve deeper into the topic. We have asked children to bring in some leaves from home and school and will press them in the classroom to be used to investigate and to add to our classroom leaf collage. The purpose of pressing them is to prolong the life of the leaves, as leaves that are left to dry on their own become brittle and dull quickly.
• Skills: scientific awareness building and investigation skills, observation skills, strengthening home-to-school connection, foster sense of school/classroom community

Dramatic Play (including the "Nook" and the cave)
• Materials: "house" furniture (e.g. stove, fridge, sink, and cupboard), peg people wooden cars, plates, pretend food, animal print fabrics, stuffed animals, baby-dolls and care supplies, string and paper, stuffed animals and habitat materials
• Rationale: To re-spark some interest in the doll house, the peg people have moved into there to hopefully create some new stories revolving around the child. New furniture and wooden cars will also be added. The animal and reading caves continue to be popular areas and will thus be staying this week. The theme of unicorns is also popular, and will be extended with the addition of string, circle stackers, and paper to make unicorn horns.
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, symbolic representation, fostering social relationships

Math and Manipulatives
• Materials: bug matching game, puzzles, colored animal sorting set, scale, wooden numbers, sunflower seeds.
• Rationale: The addition of sunflower seeds to our math table allowed for some high-number counting last week. Using the wooden numbers from a puzzle, children counted the corresponding number of seeds. On picture day last week, children had the opportunity to play some different games - one being the Bug Matching Game, that became an instant favorite. To further our investigation of sinking and floating, a scale will be added to the math table - allowing the children to use the scale to see if weight is related to whether or not an object sinks or floats.
• Skills: color recognition, seriation (i.e. stacking highest to lowest), patterning, counting, one-to-one correspondence, sorting, opportunities for collaborative problem solving, prediction

Language and Literacy
• Materials: pencils, markers, paper, envelopes, staplers, tape, Classmate Picture Drawer, simple maps
• Rationale: A group of children have been creating maps to use while "driving" their vehicles in the classroom. Some simple maps will begin to be available at the writing table next week in order to support these developing interests and provide models of what a map might look like. We will continue to focus on the Who Am I book as well, with a focus on practicing writing our names.
• Skills: pre-/early-literacy skills, letter recognition, community building, fine-motor coordination/endurance (as children hand muscles grow stronger with holding writing utensils)

Blocks
• Materials: Multi-shaped unit blocks, ramps, large hollow blocks, marbles, marble works connector set, small wooden bowling pins, paper and markers for creating maps and plans.
• Rationale: The block area was quite busy last week and filled with many different and elaborate stories. Some children continue to build vehicles, and ramps are still popular as well. Writing materials will be added to the area in hopes to extend this type of play to support literacy skills and higher-level thinking.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, concepts of balance and gravity, problem solving skills (trial and error), hypothesis creating and testing, planning, pre-/early-literacy skills

Large Motor
• Materials: GYM: monkey bars with rope swings, bumpy slide, Pedalo, A-frame bridge with ladder bridge
PLAYGROUND: climber, slides, swings, shovels/rakes, and buckets, tricycles, wagons
• Rationale: With no special events planned in the morning this week, children will have the chance to go to the gym every day this week. The addition of new equipment in the gym last Friday proved to be very exciting, and children will continue to have the opportunity to explore the new equipment. The teachers have been trying to get more time on the playground every day, and will continue to work towards this goal this week. We will continue to add to our growing leaf piles and use the balance beam and hay bales to jump into the leaves.
• Skills: large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination, body in motion (i.e. jumping and sliding), cardiovascular strength, depth perception, balance, turn taking, social skills

Special Interest (cooking projects, field trips, visitors, etc.)
- On Monday we will have our last visit from the dancers.
-Ali's small group will be taking a field trip to the Weisman Art Museum to continue their exploration of clay on Wednesday.
- Please continue to send in leaves to add to our class leaf collage and pictures of animals that live around your home to add to the "Who Am I?" book.
- The Oleanna Book Sale is here! Stop into the gym on Thursday and/or Friday to get some great deals on some beautiful books! With all the books in there, our class will not be going to the gym to play those days.

Snack
Monday - Crackers & raisins
Tuesday - Applesauce & pretzels
Wednesday - Bagels & pumpkin butter
Thursday - Frozen peas & Chex
Friday- Trail mix
* All snacks served with milk and water unless noted *

FALL Lesson Plan 11-4-2013

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class

Nov. 4 - 8, 2013

Lead Teaching This Week: Ali

Overview/goals: It is great to see so many friendships forming amongst the children! They are learning important social skills that come with making friendships. Offering valuable learning opportunities throughout the day - with a main focus being negotiation skills. We will continue to facilitate activities that foster social relationships and help equip the children with the tools and words they need - showing the children how to be considerate of one another. As a part of creating a sense of community in the classroom, we have also made an effort for the children to take ownership of the toys in the classroom. By compiling a set of guidelines for "keeping our toys safe," the children have been able to remind themselves and others to be responsible for their actions.

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)
• Materials: art table - red, yellow, blue, white paint for mixing, paper, paintbrushes (various sizes); easel - primary colored paints, left over paint from the art table clay table - clay, supportive tools (rolling pins, wood knives, pizza cutters, wire, loop tools, scrappers)
• Rationale: Last week, the children explored mixing yellow and red paint. By having all of the primary colors plus white available, the children will be able to create a wide range of new colors. Many children bring their mixed paint to the painting easel which has fostered individual and collaborative paintings. New tools added to the clay table may bring some excitement to the area as well as allowing the clay small group to share what they have been learning with the other children.
• Skills: color recognition, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, artistic expression, symbolic representation, social skills, imaginative/creative play

Sensory (water table)
• Materials: pitchers, large containers, rubber ducks, glass gems, bottle caps, corks, toy boats
• Rationale: The water table will be a place for the children to continue to explore the concepts of sinking and floating. More materials will be added to aid in the children's investigations. We have also added rubber ducks with numbers on the bottom. We will use number and matching games to pull in a number concept theme.
• Skills: compare/contrast, fine motor, creating hypotheses/testing hypotheses, prediction, eye-hand coordination, number concept, matching

Science
• Materials: computer, turkey feathers, magnifying glasses, paper, black markers, science journals, pencils, turkey observation/information book (class contributions), leaves
• Rationale: As we continue to learn about turkeys in the surrounding environment, we will make connections to the children's home environments. We will discuss the animals we see in our own backyards and discuss how different animals have different habitats. Map making has taken off at the science table - as children make predictions of where the turkeys may have gone.
• Skills: scientific awareness building and investigation skills, observation, foster sense of school/classroom community, perseverance

Math/Manipulatives (including the "Nook" and the caves)
• Materials: at the table - various seriated pegboards, puzzles, colored animal sorting set, seriation sets involving color and size, mirror (as building platform), circle stackers; in the Nook - light table, transparent color blocks, colored shapes and gems (these are in the nook)
• Rationale: We will continue to have color and seriation sets at the table, but will also incorporate number concept and counting activities. We noticed that many children were interested in counting the animal sorting set. The children will also be able to build with the circle stackers at the math table as well. A mirror will be provided as a base to build on, encouraging the children to build with a different perspective in mind - from the bottom up! The light table has seen many visitor in the "Nook" and continues to be a place for children to experiment with stacking, shadows, color, and storytelling.
• Skills: color recognition, patterning, one-to-one correspondence, number concept, creative thinking, enhancing existing relationships, sorting

Language and Literacy
• Materials: pencils, markers, paper, envelopes, staplers, tape, Classmate Picture Drawer, classroom Who Am I book
• Rationale: This week, the children will continue to add their written names into the Who Am I book. We will also be working on drawing self-portraits with Frances, using our classmate pictures as starting points. Frances is working on a presentation on self-portraits, and the children's art will be add to her collection. The self-portraits may also be used in our Who Am I book.
• Skills: pre-/early-literacy skills, letter recognition, community building, fine-motor coordination/endurance (as children hand muscles grow stronger with holding writing utensils)

Dramatic Play
• Materials: "house" furniture (e.g. stove, fridge, sink, and cupboard), plates, pretend food, fabric, baby-dolls and care supplies, stuffed animals and habitat materials
• Rationale: Animal play themes have been prevalent in the dramatic play area. This week, we will add "fur" and animal-printed fabrics to add to this play. Children are also interested in acting out some of our songs from large group - "Scamper, Scamper" is a favorite! Teacher facilitated activities such as this can pull children into the dramatic play area that may otherwise not.
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, symbolic representation, fostering social relationships

Blocks
• Materials: Multi-shaped unit blocks, ramps, large hollow blocks, marbles, marble works connector set, steering wheels
• Rationale: The block area continues to be a busy place during free time. Clipboards and pencils will be available for children to sketch blueprints of their creations while they are building. This might facilitate more elaborate play themes that span several days. Books about vehicles will be displayed in the block area to encourage adding details to block creations.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, concepts of balance and gravity, problem solving skills (trial and error), hypothesis creating and testing

Large Motor

• Materials: in the gym - slide and stair climber, bumpy slide, A-frame bridge w/balance beam, climbing wall, monkey bars, diving station (foam donut flipped on its side, soft mats folded on either side to hold it in place), jumping station w/hula-hoop landing zone; on the playground - climber, slides, swings, shovels/rakes, buckets, tricycles, wagons, boat paddles, paving bricks, hay bales.
• Rationale: We had a lot of drizzly and foggy days this past week which has left our leaf piles soggy. Weather permitting, we'll be able to get jumping again this week. In the mean time, many children have enjoyed running on the hay bale circle out on the playground. With small groups in full swing, we've been making morning gym time a choice. We will continue to play both familiar and new games to get the children engaged.
• Skills: large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination, body in motion (i.e. jumping, diving, swinging), cardiovascular strength, balance, flexibility depth perception, turn taking, social skills

Special Interests
• The dance students will be back on Monday to lead more movement activities with the children -
the children have been very excited to participate in the activities, which allow them to work with new adults.
• Picture Day is on Wednesday (November 6), so we will not have small group that day.
• We will also have our first fire drill this week, we'll note it on the board.
• It's a couple weeks away, but the Oleanna book sale is coming up on November 14-15!
(side note: we will have no gym on those days)

Snack
Monday - Carrots & Celery & triscuit
Tuesday - Applesauce & pretzels
Wednesday - Pomegranate & wheat crackers
Thursday - Rice cakes & craisins
Friday- Popcorn & pumpkin smoothies

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class

Oct 28 - Nov. 1, 2013

Lead Teaching This Week: Team teaching wk 2

Overview/goals: Fall has entered our playground and will hopefully stick around for a while. The leaf-raking party last week was a success, resulting in at least two huge piles that will be a hit for the children this week. Along with jumping into leaf piles, investigations of leaves gathered and brought into the classroom from our field trip last week will keep the focus on the changing season outside. The children will also have more opportunities for creative movement in the classroom with the dance students coming to large group on Monday.

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)
• Materials: easel - primary colored paints; art table - red and yellow paint for mixing, paper, paintbrushes; clay table - clay, supportive tools (rolling pins, mallets, wood knives, pizza cutters, wire)
• Rationale: Last week children continued to explore color mixing by mixing blue and yellow paint at the art table. Some children chose to use the colors they mixed to paint with at the easel. This week we will begin mixing red and yellow paint, with the added challenge of creating colors that match the leaves that we collected on our field trip coming at the end of the week. We also plan using those leaves to create a class leaf collage.
• Skills: color recognition, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, artistic expression, symbolic representation, social skills, imaginative/creative play

Sensory (water table)
• Materials: pitchers, large containers, rubber ducks, precious gems, bottle caps, corks
• Rationale: The children have been busy with small groups and have had less time to dive into the water table. We took out the gutters and will integrate more objects that float or sink to move the focus from water movement to buoyancy of various objects.
• Skills: compare/contrast, fine motor, creating hypotheses/testing hypotheses, prediction, eye-hand coordination

Science
• Materials: computer, turkey feathers, magnifying glasses, paper, black markers, science journals, pencils, turkey observation/information book (class contributions)
• Rationale: Though the turkeys have been absent from the playground for a while now, the children still ask about them. The made an appearance once again on Friday, so this might open up a discussion about where they went. This could also lead to a discussion about migration or animal habitats on a general level.
• Skills: scientific awareness building and investigation skills, observation, foster sense of school/classroom community, perseverance

Math/Manipulatives (including the "Nook" and the caves)
• Materials: various seriated pegboards, puzzles, colored animal sorting set, seriation sets involving color and size; light table, transparent color blocks, colored shapes and gems (these are in the nook)
• Rationale: The children are continuing to familiarize themselves with the new seriation sets, so this will continue to be our focus at the math table. The teachers will also work with the children to improve counting, matching, and seriation skills with the materials available. The light table in the nook has been a popular place to form bonds with new friends and create elaborate stories. This week the colored shapes will add another facet to this play.
• Skills: color recognition, patterning, one-to-one correspondence, creative thinking, enhancing existing relationships, sorting

Language and Literacy
• Materials: pencils, markers, paper, envelopes, staplers, tape, Classmate Picture Drawer
• Rationale: Last week many children worked on writing their names or their classmate's names. This week teachers will continue to support this learning by working with children at the writing table by inviting them to write and add their names to our Who Am I? book. Materials for cutting, drawing, and stapling will also continue to be available.
• Skills: pre-/early-literacy skills, letter recognition, community building, fine-motor coordination/endurance (as children hand muscles grow stronger with holding writing utensils)

Dramatic Play
• Materials: "house" furniture (e.g. stove, fridge, sink, and cupboard), plates, pretend food, fabric, baby-dolls and care supplies, stuffed animals and habitat materials
• Rationale: House and family themes have been popular in the dramatic play area since moving the baby-dolls into the small cave at the beginning of last week. We've seen families of unicorns, princesses, and even humans, too! Vehicle building also continues to be popular as well and the children built crusher machines, roller coasters, as well as other cars and trucks. This week children will continue to have the opportunity to act out these themes in the dramatic play area.
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, symbolic representation, fostering social relationships

Blocks
• Materials: Multi-shaped unit blocks, ramps, large hollow blocks, marbles, marble works connector set, steering wheels
• Rationale: The children are very excited to move into the block area, especially after small group time. Ramp building continues to be popular, which allows for negotiating and problem-solving. The block builders have clear ideas about what they are building each day, however books about transportation and work vehicles will also be displayed in the block area to support ways to add further detail to their creations.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, concepts of balance and gravity, problem solving skills (trial and error), hypothesis creating and testing

Large Motor

• Materials: in the gym - slide and stair climber, A-frame bridge w/balance beam, climbing wall, monkey bars, diving station (foam donut flipped on its side, soft mats folded on either side to hold it in place), jumping station w/hula-hoop landing zone; on the playground - climber, slides, swings, shovels/rakes, buckets, tricycles, wagons, boat paddles, paving bricks
• Rationale: This week we will explore ways to extend play in the gym. Many of the children pretend to be animals like unicorns and hyenas as they interact with the equipment. Others work on improving their jumping and landing skills as they see how big they can jump. On the playground, we will continue to facilitate activities among small groups of children. Tackling has become quite the fan favorite! The teachers facilitate this by sharing safety rules with the children and creating clear boundaries. Last Friday, we had our leaf raking party - a big success. We're sure the children will enjoy jumping into the piles this week!
• Skills: large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination, body in motion (i.e. jumping, diving, swinging), cardiovascular strength, balance, flexibility depth perception, turn taking, social skills

Special Interest
• The dance students will be joining us again for large group on Monday.
• Picture day is coming! We will have our class picture (as well as individual pictures if you'd like to order some) on Wednesday, November 6. It will be a busy day, so no small-groups that day.
• Keep sending along cold-weather clothing for the playground! Also, if you do borrow items from school, please remember to wash them and bring them back to school.

Snack
Monday - Cinnamon toast
Tuesday - Cooking project with Sheila
Wednesday - Pretzels and Craisins
Thursday - Apples and Chex
Friday - Rice cakes and raisins
*All snacks served with a choice of milk or water, unless noted*

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class

October 21-25, 2013

Lead Teaching This Week: Emily

Overview: Last week we began to see more creative movement being incorporated into our classroom. Large group meetings have been especially interactive; the dance students came in on Monday to lead some movement activities, and we thought of new movements to add to a few of the class' favorite songs. This idea will continue to be a part of the daily activities. We completed our first round of small groups last week, and an emerging focus of all the groups is learning how to work together in a group! Small groups will continue this week as the children go deeper together into the topics of music and movement, light/reflection, and clay.

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)

• Materials: easel - primary colored paints, mirrors, blue paint mixtures from the art table, paintbrushes; art table - blue and white colored paint, muffin tins, paintbrushes; clay table - clay, supportive tools (rolling pins, mallets, wood knives, pizza cutters, wire)

• Rationale: The children have sustained interest in the art areas, with heavy intrigue for the paint mixing happening at the art table. These areas will be set up similarly to past weeks, with a few modifications in tools and paint colors to clean up some clutter and continue exploration of color mixing.
• Skills: color recognition, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, artistic expression, symbolic representation, social skills, imaginative/creative play, collaborative problem-solving

Sensory (water table)

• Materials: pitchers, small and large containers, small-large funnels, PVC pipes / connectors, vinyl gutter ramps, rubber ducks, corks, colored gems
• Rationale: The water table has been active with water pouring into and splashing out of the sides! This week children will be able to compare and contrast the way various objects flow down the gutters depending on how heavy they are, as well as determine which objects float or sink and hypothesize why. The gutters are no longer tied down, so the children will need to work together in order to make the ramps stable.
• Skills: enhancing existing social connections/friendships, large/fine motor, eye-hand coordination, math concepts including spatial awareness/measurement/counting/comparing-contrasting, prediction, observation

Science

• Materials: computer, turkey feathers, magnifying glasses, paper, black markers, science journals, pencils, turkey observation/information book (class contributions)
• Rationale: Turkey talk has died down in the classroom, and the turkeys have stayed away from our playground this week, however a few children remain interested in searching for the turkeys outside as well as pretending to play turkeys throughout the day. Continuing our focus on turkeys this week will allow children to come back to investigations and inquiries concerning our feathered friends.
• Skills: scientific awareness building and investigation skills, observation, foster sense of school/classroom community, perseverance

Dramatic Play (including the "Nook" and the cave)

• Materials: "house" furniture (e.g. stove, fridge, sink, and cupboard), plates, pretend food, fabric, stuffed animals, baby-dolls and care supplies, stuffed animals and habitat materials
• Rationale: Pretend picnics have been very popular this past week, along with pretend cooking with the new food items. The pretend play has become an area where including other children is common, which is bringing in a strong focus on social skills.
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, symbolic representation, fostering social relationships, observation, prediction, creating hypotheses/investigating

Math and Manipulatives

• Materials: various seriated pegboards, nesting cups, puzzles, colored animal sorting set, seriation sets, light block and colored gems (these are in the nook)
• Rationale: The collection of challenging puzzles and activities continue to bring children to the math table. This week some puzzles will be replaced with seriation sets, creating a stronger focus for the math table. To expand the topic of light, the nook will become a room for experimenting with light, shadows, and projecting onto other surfaces. Children will be able to explore this new tool individually as well as complete teacher-facilitated activities.
• Skills: color recognition, seriation, patterning, counting, one-to-one correspondence, sorting, opportunities for collaborative problem solving

Language and Literacy

• Materials: pencils, markers, paper, envelopes, staplers, tape, classmate picture drawers, classmate picture bulletin board, Who Am I? book
• Rationale: This week the language and literacy table will become the central location for all things related to the underlying Who Am I? focus in the classroom. Teachers will be asking new questions for our classroom book and helping the children respond.
• Skills: pre-/early-literacy skills, letter and number recognition, community building, fine-motor coordination/endurance, face recognition

Blocks

• Materials: Multi-shaped unit blocks, ramps, large hollow blocks, marbles, marble works connector set, steering wheels
• Rationale: The addition of the marble works late last week was exciting for the children and gave them some new ideas for ramp building. Some children also experimented with trying to knock down bowling pins at the end of their ramps. This week, we will continue to create ramps using the bowling pins as the end goal and ideas gained from the marble works set. 

• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, concepts of balance and gravity, problem solving skills (trial and error), hypothesis creating and testing

Large Motor

• Materials: in the gym - slide and stair climber, A-frame bridge w/balance beam, climbing wall, monkey bars, diving station (foam donut flipped on its side, soft mats folded on either side to hold it in place), jumping station w/hula-hoop landing zone; on the playground - climber, slides, swings, shovels/rakes, buckets, tricycles, wagons, boat paddles, paving bricks
• Rationale: Every couple of weeks the materials in the gym are rotated to incorporate new large-motor skills. We will begin to explore these stations this week and create new group activities. Outside, the children have enjoyed utilizing the wagons as a means for group play and transporting the paving bricks across the playground. And with the leaves falling, raking will become a new popular activity.
• Skills: large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination, body in motion (i.e. jumping, diving, swinging), cardiovascular strength, depth perception, turn taking, social skills

Special Interest (cooking projects, field trips, visitors, etc.)

- The dance students will not join us for large group this Monday, however will return on the following Monday.
- On Wednesday the "Light/Reflection small group" will be taking a field trip to the mirrored rocks across the street from the Lab School. For those parents with children in this group, watch for a permission slip on Monday.
- A nature-observation walk to see what is changing in our outdoor environment will be happening on Thursday.
- Along with Amy's class, we'd like to invite you to join us for a raking party this Friday, starting around 10:45am. If you're attending, be sure to bring your rake!

Snack

Monday - Apples and Triscuits
Tuesday - Carrots and celery with hummus
Wednesday - Rice cakes and raisins
Thursday - Baked corn chips and carrot dip
Friday - Sunbutter sandwiches
*All snacks served with milk/water unless noted*

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class
October 14-18, 2013
Lead Teaching This Week: Michaela

Overview: This past week we spent a lot of time talking about apples. We had Barb visit to lead an apple-themed large group, made applesauce, even went on a field trip to pick our own apples! We will continue that theme this week through apple-related songs and snacks. We also continued to build ramps in the water table and block area, built on our talks about turkeys at the science table, and expanded on the answers in our Who am I? book by adding "favorite food" pictures. We will delve further into these topics, as well as the topic of colors and rainbows with some new color exploring and mixing opportunities this week. Small groups will also begin this week, with the topics of music and movement, light/reflection, and clay. Small groups are a great way to support our continued focus on building social relationships through weekly meetings with the same group of children.

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)
• Materials: easel - primary colored paints, mirrors; art table - white, black and one primary colored paint, mixing trays, paintbrushes, markers, crayons, paper; clay table - clay, supportive tools (rolling pins, mallets, wood knives, pizza cutters, wire)
• Rationale: Last week, the children used the art areas to explore some of the current curriculum topics and ideas: using the excitement of rainbows to inspire color mixing at the art table, and using the clay to create turkey nests, homes, and food. We also began talking about shades of color. This week we will begin mixing paint at the art table to further explore the concept of light and dark colors. The addition of mirrors at the easel will allow children to create self-portraits like the ones they did in black marker in the science area the past few weeks.
• Skills: color recognition, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, artistic expression, symbolic representation, social skills, imaginative/creative play

Sensory (water table)
• Materials: pitchers, small and large bottles/jugs, small-large funnels, funnel stand, vinyl gutter ramps, rubber ducks, corks
• Rationale: Last week the vinyl gutter ramps at the water table continued to be an exciting place in the classroom. This week we will begin changing the angles of the ramps to look at speed in relation to the ramp's angle. The structure of the ramps is often very delicate, so children must use collaborative problem solving skills to rebuild and maintain their ramps. Given the teamwork mentality often necessary at the table, the children will continue to perform turn-taking and negotiation skills as they measure, pour, and predict which rubber duck or cork will take the plunge down the ramp first.
• Skills: enhancing existing social connections/friendships, large/fine motor, hand-eye coordination, math concepts including spatial awareness/measurement/counting/comparing-contrasting, prediction

Science
• Materials: picture board with our class pictures, large mirrors, black markers, paper, computer (with the "Our class pictures" slideshow scrolling across the screen), Who Am I? class book with children's pictures, books about turkeys, turkey feathers, magnifying glasses, turkey observation/information book (class contributions)
• Rationale: The children continue to be excited about the turkeys and although the excitement of apples delayed our work on the Turkey Observation book we hoped to make, we plan to revisit it this week. Children will have the opportunity to draw comparisons between turkeys, turkey tracks, nests, and feathers, as well as "take notes" on anything else they find interesting.
• Skills: scientific awareness building and investigation skills, observation skills, strengthening home-to-school connection, foster sense of school/classroom community, foster growing sense of self/autonomy

Dramatic Play (including the "Nook" and the cave)
• Materials: "house" furniture (e.g. stove, fridge, sink, and cupboard), plates, pretend food, shoes, fabric, stuffed animals, baby-dolls and care supplies (these are in the Nook), stuffed animals and habitat materials
• Rationale: Pretend picnics have been very popular this past week, along with apple-themed play, such as going apple picking or making applesauce. The addition of new pretend food items (colorful caps) and picnic baskets will allow children to expand on these themes.
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, symbolic representation, fostering social relationships

Math and Manipulatives
• Materials: various seriated pegboards, nesting cups, puzzles, colored animal sorting set
• Rationale: The collection of challenging puzzles and activities continue to bring children to the math table. This week some puzzles will be switched allowing children to continue to find new challenges at the math table. The addition of two more colors of animals to the animal sorting set added a new element/characteristic for the children to consider, making it more complex.
• Skills: color recognition, seriation (i.e. stacking highest to lowest), patterning, counting, one-to-one correspondence, sorting, opportunities for collaborative problem solving

Language and Literacy
• Materials: pencils, markers, paper, envelopes, staplers, tape, Classmate Picture Drawer
• Rationale: At the end of last week the students were formally introduced to the classmate picture drawer when they used their pictures to cast their vote on whether or not they liked the apples we picked on our field trip. Students have also been creating letters and invitations for classmates at the writing table. This week teachers will continue to facilitate the use of the picture drawer in order to help students "address" these letters and notes to their classmates, fostering social relationships.
• Skills: pre-/early-literacy skills, letter recognition, community building, fine-motor coordination/endurance (as children hand muscles grow stronger with holding writing utensils)

Blocks
• Materials: Multi-shaped unit blocks, ramps, large hollow blocks, marbles, marble works connector set, small wooden bowling pins
• Rationale: The addition of the marble works late last week was exciting for the children and gave them some new ideas for ramp building. Some children also experimented with trying to knock down bowling pins at the end of their ramps. This week, we will continue to create ramps using the bowling pins as the end goal and ideas gained from the marble works set.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, concepts of balance and gravity, problem solving skills (trial and error), hypothesis creating and testing

Large Motor
• Materials: in the GYM: slide and stair climber, jumping station (bolster/uneven walk to padded donut landing zone), climbing wall, monkey bars, beanbag throwing area, teeter-totter
PLAYGROUND: climber, slides, swings, shovels/rakes, and buckets, tricycles, wagons
• Rationale: With no field trips or research studies planned, children will have the chance to go to the gym every day this week. The addition of the teeter-totter last week gave rise to a great teamwork and balance opportunity, with children having to work with children on the other side of the teeter-totter in order to move back and forth. We will continue to use this equipment this week. Last week we brought out the tricycles and wagons, which proved to be very exciting as well. The wagons have proved to be great tools for building social relationships, with children pulling other children around the playground and participating in dramatic play.
• Skills: large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination, body in motion (i.e. jumping and sliding), cardiovascular strength, depth perception, turn taking, social skills

Special Interest (cooking projects, field trips, visitors, etc.)
- On Monday we will have dance students from the U of M in our classroom to lead our large group.
- Lab School Creativity Night is Tuesday, October 15th from 6-7:30 pm. We hope to see you there!
- Keep sending in your child's favorite food pictures. Please remember to email them to Ross and he'll print them at school. Also, we'll plan on adding another question/picture to our book later this week.

Snack
Monday - Apples & pretzels
Tuesday - Trail mix
Wednesday - Corn chex & raisins
Thursday - Sunbutter & crackers
Friday- Oven fries
*All snacks served with milk/water unless noted*

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Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class
October 7 - 11, 2013
Lead Teaching This Week: Ali

Overview: This past week has been a turkey-filled one! Every day, the children are coming into class making predictions of whether we will spot the turkeys or not. It is always interesting to hear their rationales ("It's too rainy, they might be hiding on the playground."). This excitement shows no signs of subsiding, so we will continue to explore the possibilities of this topic in the upcoming week through our observations and work at the science table. We will also be diving into the topics of ramp building, colors/rainbows, and our classroom question, "Who am I?" in our daily focus groups.

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)
• Materials: easel - primary colored paints; art table - primary colored water, pipettes, clear mixing trays, various natural and "beautiful" materials for collage (e.g. wood shavings, pinecones, seed pods, cinnamon, etc.), markers, crayons, paper; clay table - clay, supportive tools (rolling pins, mallets, wood knives, pizza cutters, wire)
• Rationale: Last week, the children used the art areas to explore some of the current curriculum topics and ideas: using the excitement of rainbows to inspire specific color mixing at the art table, and using the clay to create turkey nests, homes, and food. As we begin to go deeper into our discussions of turkeys and color/rainbows, these stations will provide opportunities to check in on what the children already know and to build on their growing knowledge.
• Skills: color recognition, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, artistic expression, symbolic representation, social skills, imaginative/creative play, collaborative problem solving

Sensory (water table)
• Materials: pitchers, small and large bottles/jugs, small-large funnels, funnel stand, vinyl gutter ramps, rubber ducks
• Rationale: The addition of the vinyl gutters and rubber ducks has helped ramp building take off at the water table. The structure of the ramps is often very delicate, so children must use collaborative problem solving skills to rebuild and maintain their ramps. Given the teamwork mentality often necessary at the table, the children will continue to perform turn-taking and negotiation skills as they measure, pour, and predict which rubber duck will take the plunge down the ramp first.
• Skills: enhancing existing social connections/friendships, large/fine motor, hand-eye coordination, math concepts including spatial awareness/measurement/counting/comparing-contrasting

Science
• Materials: picture board with our class pictures, large mirrors, black markers, paper, computer (with the "Our class pictures" slideshow scrolling across the screen), books about turkeys, turkey feathers, magnifying glasses, turkey observation/information book (class contributions)
• Rationale: After our turkey walk, the children continued to express interest in all things turkey. Bringing this topic into the science area will allow the children to begin asking questions about the anatomy, habitat, and overall lifestyle of turkeys through ongoing observations, note-taking, and discussions. Drawing comparisons and differences between turkeys and other animals (including humans) will allow the children to make connections to nature and their own lives.
• Skills: scientific awareness building and investigation skills, observation skills, strengthening home-to-school connection, foster sense of school/classroom community, foster growing sense of self/autonomy

Dramatic Play (including the "Nook" and the cave)
• Materials: "house" furniture (e.g. stove, fridge, sink, and cupboard), plates, pretend food, shoes, fabric, stuffed animals, baby-dolls and care supplies (these are in the Nook), stuffed animals and habitat materials
• Rationale: Storylines of families (everything from cats and dogs to people) have been the overwhelming favorite this past week. As the children settle into daily routines and develop stronger connections with other children, their storylines become more complex and pick up where they left off the following day. The seeds of truly rich play have been sown.
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, symbolic representation, fostering social relationships

Math and Manipulatives
• Materials: various seriated pegboards, nesting cups, puzzles, colored animal sorting set
• Rationale: The collection of challenging puzzles and activities continue to bring children to the math table. Adding different animals to the colored animal sorting set will bring in a new element/characteristic for the children to consider, making it more complex.
• Skills: color recognition, seriation (i.e. stacking highest to lowest), patterning, counting, one-to-one correspondence, sorting, opportunities for collaborative problem solving

Language and Literacy
• Materials: pencils, markers, paper, envelopes, staplers, tape, Classmate Picture Drawer
• Rationale: Our investigation of the question "Who am I?" will carry over to the literature center this week. We will begin to compile an "Our Class" book which we will add to throughout the year. Our first mission will be to document all of the children's and teacher's favorite foods. This will allow for continued social connections as children learn about their classmates.
• Skills: pre-/early-literacy skills, letter recognition, introduction to storytelling, fine-motor coordination/endurance (as children hand muscles grow stronger with holding writing utensils)

Blocks
• Materials: Multi-shaped unit blocks, ramps, large hollow blocks, marbles, marble works connector set (may be added later in the week)
• Rationale: The children are exploring more complicated ramp designs by combining ideas with other children. The excitement of the marbles rolling down the ramps reflects the growing excitement of ramp building at the water table. We will continue to support reflection and hypothesizing in these areas.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, concepts of balance and gravity, problem solving skills (trial and error), hypothesis creating and testing

Large Motor
• Materials: in the GYM: slide and stair climber, jumping station (bolster/uneven walk to padded donut landing zone), climbing wall, monkey bars, beanbag throwing area, long crawling tube
on the PLAYGROUND: climber, slides, swings, shovels/rakes, and buckets
• Rationale: Our "turkey walk" field trip and participation in the research team's activity this past week prevented us from having our normal gym time each day. We're sure the children will enjoy getting into the gym every morning this upcoming week. The children have become more familiar with the spaces and each other - bringing more dramatic play to large motor time and giving context to the equipment. Our time outdoors has given the children opportunities to adventure the expanse of the playground while revisiting or sparking new friendships. Not to mention, the playground is a great place for our continued turkey research!
• Skills: large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination, body in motion (i.e. jumping and sliding), cardiovascular strength, depth perception, turn taking, social skills

Special Interest (cooking projects, field trips, visitors, etc.)
- Barb will lead large group on Monday, bringing a very special guest! We're looking forward to meeting her new friend, as well as having her join our classroom.
- PAC meeting Monday night from 7-8.30p. Hope you can make it!
- Keep sending in your child's favorite food pictures. Please remember to email them to Ross and he'll print them at school.

Snack
Monday - Apple slices & crackers
Tuesday - Rice pudding
Wednesday - Pretzels & fresh apple cider
Thursday - Rice crisp cereal & raisins
Friday- Applesauce & crackers
*All snacks served with milk/water unless noted*

FALL SESSION Lesson Plan 9-30-2013

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apples.jpg


Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class
September 30 October 4, 2013
Lead Teaching These Weeks: Team-teaching Round 1

Overview: The first two weeks of school have been filed with many exciting developments! The children have quickly settled into the daily schedule and routines: easily following the flow of the day. We have also observed a quickly growing sense of classroom community - with friendships from last year picking up right where we left off, and new social connections and friendships blossoming every day! Speaking of the connections, we would love to know whom your child is talking about at home. Also, we're curious to know what recounts you are hearing from your child about the daily activities. Feel free to send an email or chat with one of the teachers briefly during drop-off and/or pick-up. The teachers have been focusing heavily on helping the children connect with one another - facilitating play themes in the dramatic play, block, and clay tables; leading daily name songs and games to help the children make the connections between the pictures they see on the picture page at home and the faces they see at school; including pictures of the children in many areas of the room (e.g. peg people in the block area, picture drawers at the writing table, "action" pictures in the content areas, etc.). And oh yes...the wild turkeys! Read more about them in the sections below!

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)
• Materials: easel - primary colored paints; art table - primary colored water, pipettes, clear mixing trays, various natural and "beautiful" materials for collage (e.g. wood shavings, pinecones, seed pods, cinnamon sticks, etc.), markers, crayons, paper; clay table -clay, supportive tools (rolling pins, mallets, wood knives, pizza cutters)
• Rationale: Colored water mixing and painting at the easel have been a hit! In order to continue supporting the children's creativity and artistic expression/exploration, we will have the same materials available this week. The children's comfort levels with using the materials continues to increase, and as we know, the children will explore these materials further with repeated experiences. An effort to foster social relationships and collaboration will also be made by continuing to foster and facilitate conversations between the children at the water-mixing station.
• Skills: color recognition, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, artistic expression, symbolic representation, social skills, imaginative/creative play, collaborative problem solving

Sensory (water table)
• Materials: pitchers, small and large bottles/jugs, small-large funnels, funnels with transparent hoses attached, funnel stand
• Rationale: Last week, the children poured water and filled up all of the jugs at the water table. Adding funnels and hoses to their play added an exciting element of watching the water move through to the funnel or hose and come pouring out. Sharing these tools allows for opportunities to interact socially by requesting a turn, working together to fill a jug, and talking through new ideas.
• Skills: enhancing existing social connections/friendships, large/fine motor, hand-eye coordination, math concepts including spatial awareness/measurement/counting/comparing-contrasting

Science
• Materials: picture board with our class pictures, large mirrors, black markers, paper, computer (with the "Our class pictures" slideshow scrolling across the screen)
• Rationale: We started looking at the "Who am I?" question by looking at ourselves and classmates, as well! In small groups with a teacher, the children have been playing a game at the computer - trying to remember the names of the classmates as their pictures pop up on the screen (big smiles can be seen when your child sees their own picture!). While watching the pictures, many children also became inspired to start using the black markers and drawing - often drawing pictures of themselves on the paper provided. We will continue this exploration this week - taking a closer look at ourselves in relation to our classmates.
• Skills: scientific awareness building and investigation skills, observation skills, strengthening home-to-school connection, foster sense of school/classroom community, foster growing sense of self/autonomy

Dramatic Play (including the "Nook" and the cave)
• Materials: "house" furniture (e.g. stove, fridge, sink, and cupboard), plates, pretend food, shoes, fabric, stuffed animals, baby-dolls and care supplies (these are in the Nook), stuffed animals and habitat materials
• Rationale: Many children have found the dramatic play area, and continue to create new stories daily. The currently topic is revolving around "cat families." This play is bringing many children together through fun and imaginative stories! Others have found the large dollhouse another great way to recreate and tell familiar home-related stories; again, bringing many small groups of children together to play.
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, symbolic representation, fostering social relationships

Math and Manipulatives
• Materials: various seriated pegboards, nesting cups, puzzles, connectors, colored animal sorting set
• Rationale: The puzzles were a hit at the table, however we can see some are ready for new challenges. We have added new, more challenging puzzles, as well as an animal sorting set to stimulate the children's thinking related to problem solving, categorizing, and sorting. These activities also create great opportunities for children to work collaboratively.
• Skills: color recognition, seriation (i.e. stacking highest to lowest), patterning, counting, one-to-one correspondence, sorting, opportunities for collaborative problem solving

Language and Literacy
• Materials: pencils, markers, paper, envelopes, staplers, tape, Classmate Picture Drawer
• Rationale: Note writing and picture making was the popular activity at the writing table last week. We will continue to support that by adding more envelopes, but also highlight the "Classmate Picture Drawers." This is an organizer that holders individual pictures of all the children and teachers that are in/work with our class. We will talk about how using these pictures to "address" letters and pictures will help others know who the item is for and/or who it is from.
• Skills: pre-/early-literacy skills, letter recognition, introduction to storytelling, fine-motor coordination/endurance (as children hand muscles grow stronger with holding writing utensils)

Blocks
• Materials: Multi-shaped unit blocks, ramps, large hollow blocks, large marbles
• Rationale: Ramp building has been taking off in our classroom and allows for investigation of various building and science concepts; speed, balance, and gravity just to name a few. Ramp building also provides an opportunity to work on problem solving skills as children figure out how to make different track arrangements that will get their marble from the start to the finish. Children also get to work on collaboration and negotiation skills as a whole group of students create one functioning ramp together.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, concepts of balance and gravity, problem solving skills (trial and error), hypothesis creating and testing

Large Motor
• Materials: in the GYM: slide and stair climber, jumping station (bolster/uneven walk to padded donut landing zone), climbing wall, monkey bars, rocking boats, beanbag throwing area
on the PLAYGROUND: climber, slides, swings, and lush grasses and tress provided by Mother Nature
• Rationale: The gym has quickly become another favorite area for most (if not all) of our children. The children have really enjoyed the teacher-led games called "Sleeping Children" and "Pop Right Up." We had a new set-up introduced last week, with running and "long-jumping-into-the-donut" area, as well as a beanbag throwing station - challenging children to aim and throw their beanbag through a high or low basket. We will continue to venture to the gym every day. As for the playground, we have had a huge development with the wild turkeys joining us on the playground! The first day we found them on our playground we helped cheer and clap them to safety off the playground. The following day, we did some careful observing - trying to figure out why they wanted to come to our playground. When continue to share our developments as the session continues!
• Skills: large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination, body in motion (i.e. jumping and sliding), cardiovascular strength, depth perception, turn taking, social

Special Interest (large group, music, cooking, fire drill, etc)
• The first PAC meeting is coming soon: Monday, October 7 from 7-8.30p. Be sure to look at the PAC tab on the school website (as well as in your school handbook) for more info about the PAC, as well as how to get involved.
• We have some exciting upcoming classroom events this week. On Tuesday, we will go for a walk around the school to see if we can find out where else the turkeys that "play" on our playground like to go. Also possibly on Tuesday (or later in the week), we will help one of the research teams with a game in the gym. It's not for formal recording/data collection purposes - we're just helping them get their equipment (cameras) ready for another study they hope to start soon. On Wednesday, we will make applesauce in the classroom, and have a taste-test comparing our class-made applesauce to store-bought applesauce.
• With the variable autumn weather, please continue sends jackets/sweatshirts so child can stay covered on playground if needed.

Snack
Monday - Apple slices and crackers
Tuesday - Rice cakes
Wednesday - Applesauce taste test (with homemade graham crackers)
Thursday - Rice Chex
Friday - Granola bars (possible made with Sheila!)
*All snacks served with milk/water unless otherwise noted*

FALL SESSION Lesson Plan 9-27-2013

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school_in_Fall2.png


Weekly Lesson Plan for Ross' Class
September 17-27, 2013
Lead Teaching These Weeks: Ross

Overview: And so begins another year at the Lab School! As you will notice the room is filled (or rather, not so filled), with many familiar materials. At the beginning of the school year, I feel it's extremely important that the children feel comfortable with coming to school. Even the "veterans" of the Lab School sometimes need some adjustment time to get back into the routines of coming to school every day. That is why we start the year with many familiar materials. Also, I feel it is vital that the children begin connecting with one another rather than the materials in the room. A key element to supporting the learning in early childhood revolves around the social relationships of the child, and that is why building relationships is a primary focus of the fall session. Our goals for the first few weeks are to help your child be excited about coming to school, feel like the Lab School is a safe and fun place to be while they are here, and get to know their peers (hopefully establishing new and/or reigniting old friendships). Our overarching question for the year is "Who am I?" and you will see this theme represented in many areas of the classroom.

Expressive Arts (paint, collage, clay)
• Materials: easel - primary colored paints; art table - primary colored water, pipettes, clear mixing trays, various natural and "beautiful" materials for collage (e.g. wood shavings, pinecones, seed pods, leaves, etc.), markers, crayons; clay table - clay, supportive tools (rolling pins, mallets, and wood knives)
• Rationale: To foster creativity and artistic expression, we will have a variety of familiar/intriguing materials. We also plan to create opportunities for children to work together/observe the work of their peers by inviting groups of children to work together at the art table; initiating/fostering social relationships.
• Skills: color recognition, creativity, fine-motor strength/coordination, artistic expression, symbolic representation, social skills

Sensory (water table)
• Materials: pitchers, small/large bottles and containers
• Rationale: Exploring the physical properties of water is extremely engaging for children. It also allows for many opportunities for children to play together: working cooperatively to fill containers, excitedly pouring the contents out, as well as creating opportunities for the start of various dramatic play storylines.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor strength, eye-to-hand coordination, math conceptions related to counting/measurement/comparing-contrasting, fostering new/existing social relationships

Science
• Materials: picture board with our class pictures, large mirrors, black markers, paper, computer (with "Our class pictures" slideshow scrolling across the screen
• Rationale: To begin answering our "Who am I?" question, we want to help build the children's awareness of themselves, as well as their fellow classmates. Here, the children will get to find their picture as well as begin to identify the pictures of their peers. The drawing supplies and mirrors are they to elicit the children observations of themselves in "real time:" watching their own movements and expressions while having the possibility to start drawing what they observe. Eventually, we plan to broaden the questions from "Who am I?" to "Who are we?"
• Skills: scientific awareness building and investigation skills, observation skills, strengthening home-to-school connection, foster sense of school/classroom community, foster growing sense of self/autonomy

Dramatic Play (including the "Nook" and the cave)
• Materials: "house" furniture (e.g. stove, fridge, sink, and cupboard), plates, pretend food, shoes, fabric, stuffed animals, baby-dolls and care supplies (these are in the Nook), stuffed animals and habitat materials
• Rationale: Playing house is one of the most common themes for young children to play, as it is what they know the best! This will help support the children's growing comfort with coming to school as well as with each other as they can play with familiar props and storylines. The stuffed animals in the cave offer a similar opportunity for representational story play: using the animals as a means to express/tell their stories.
• Skills: imaginative/creative play, symbolic representation, fostering social relationships

Math and Manipulatives
• Materials: various seriated pegboards, nesting cups, puzzles, connectors
• Rationale: These open-ended materials allow the children to sort, order, and arrange the materials in various ways while allowing the teachers to ask specific content questions that help us learn more about what your child knows. They also create great opportunities for children to work together, which has been proven to show strong learning potential when children work in groups.
• Skills: color recognition, seriation (i.e. stacking highest to lowest), patterning, counting, one-to-one correspondence, sorting, opportunities for collaborative problem solving

Language and Literacy
• Materials: pencils, markers, paper, envelopes, staplers, tape
• Rationale: Many children have already shown an interest in writing during the home-visits, and we feel it is imperative to support the pre-/early-literacy skills involved with writing. We also want to begin the year off with opportunities to tell and create stories with the children, and the writing center will (hopefully) become a hub for creation of stories (from both the teachers and the children!).
• Skills: pre-/early-literacy skills, letter recognition, introduction to storytelling, fine-motor coordination/endurance (as children hand muscles grow stronger with holding writing utensils)

Blocks
• Materials: large hollow blocks, multi-shaped unit blocks, peg people, wooden dollhouse, translucent color blocks
• Rationale: Blocks (large and small) offer amazing opportunities for children to create and represent the world as well as how they make sense of it! The vast building potential allows for children to symbolically represent almost anything: planes, trucks, homes, planets, and even math problems! Blocks are also a seminal component to building/supporting social relationships between the children. The addition of the peg-people (wood dowels with a picture of each child/teacher on them) will help create great opportunities for the children to comfortably play/form relationships with one another - using the peg people initiate interactions.
• Skills: large-/fine-motor skills, symbolic representation, concepts of balance, counting, comparing/contrasting skills, social relationships, opportunities for endless dramatic play

Large Motor
• Materials: in the GYM: A-frame, slide, jumping station with padded donut landing zone, climbing wall, monkey bars, trampoline
on the PLAYGROUND: climber, slides, swings, and lush grasses and tress provided by Mother Nature
• Rationale: The gym is another great venue to help the children get to know one another by observing peers try the various equipment, participating in group activities, taking turns, and often finding someone who enjoys the same activities. The gym also lends itself to be a space for fun teacher-facilitated activities! To begin the year, we will play a few games during the week that will help the children meet one another. On the playground we will keep the buckets, shovels, and tricycles in the shed for the first few days, letting the children explore playground and discover all the amazing things it has to offer!
• Skills: large-motor strength/coordination/endurance, eye-to-hand and eye-to-foot coordination, body in motion (i.e. jumping and sliding), cardiovascular strength, depth perception, turn taking, social

Special Interest (large group, music, cooking, fire drill, etc)
ENROLLMENT FORMS - if you still have any forms to turn in, please bring them with you on your child's first day.
• Just a reminder, there will be no curbside drop-off on Tuesday or Wednesday.
• With the cooler temps seemingly on their way, be sure to send the appropriate clothes with your child. Our room does stay warm, so having your children wear a few layers may help them stay comfortable as they travel from inside and out.

Snack (As we are still waiting for the last of the allergy information to come in this week, snack will remain quite simple...it will change for next week.)
Monday - No School
Tuesday - Rice cakes
Wednesday - Rice cakes
Thursday - Pretzels
Friday- Graham crackers & raisins
*All snacks served with milk/water unless otherwise noted*

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