ECC Weekly News - 1/29/21
With the snowfall we got this week, the Early Learners were so curious about exploring and experimenting with the real snow! We incorporated lots of time to read all about snow and what happens to it when it freezes and gets warmer. The children said that the snow "makes puddles" and "turns into soup." They also did lots of creating in the Art Area using all different kinds of media. They painted on snow, created melted snow people using glue, decorated their very own mittens with yarn and buttons, and used their fingers to go ice skating on tin foil. Although we didn't get much time outside to play, the children got time to use their gross motor muscles inside the classroom by using wax paper to go "skating" in our indoor rink. The children have also been working hard on recognizing and writing their names. We are working with each of them on strengthening their fine motor muscles and practicing how to hold their writing tools.
Preschool 1 kiddos are becoming quite the scientists with our wind and water unit, and the fun continued this week. On Monday, we used a fan to see what wind looks like and discuss what they think the wind is and what it does. “It’s air”, “it can be warm & cold”, “it can be strong or soft” “it’s invisible” are some of the clever thoughts the children came up with! We also learned about the difference between sink and float while using individual water bins and items for them to test out. Goop was a huge hit for our class as well and we will be definitely making this again after watching the fun they had with it. One of the girls told her group “it’s so droopy,” which I thought was the perfect description of goop. The children made adorable owls for our letter of the week corner and snowy night skies after reading The Snowy Day. At morning meetings, we talked lots about the letter O and Ms. B’s artist skills were tested on our letter chart when kids came up with words like ostrich, otter and ox. We even played a snowball tossing game inside our class! What’s more fun than that?! This was such a fun week for the kiddos, as well as the teachers!
This week we continued with the winter, water, and wind unit. It was a perfect time to talk about snow since we have some on the ground! The book of the week was The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats. The children listened to the story, we then discussed and played it out. We walked with our toes: pointing them in and out. Next, we dragged our feet to make tracks and pretended to make snow angels! Afterwards, preschoolers created a snowy scene and added Peter on it.
Preschoolers had lots of fun playing with “snowballs''. Children used their fine/gross motor skills, hands/eyes coordination, as well math with this activity. They took turns throwing the snowballs into the basket, then counted how many they got in. Preschoolers were great sports and cheered for each other when they made a basket!
For science, preschool made a "Snow Storm in a Jar". It was a great experiment, preschool took turns adding the alka seltzer and observed how it reacted in the jar. They were so excited and said “This is amazing!”, “It’s going to explode!”, and “Can you tell my mom how to make this?”. For our water activity, preschoolers really enjoyed the hands-on “Sink or Float” experiment. They made predictions, then observed the buoyancy and density of each object.
For O week, preschool made awesome owl crafts! We also focused a lot on opposites. Preschool learned many opposite words and we did a game using some movement ( fast/ slow, sit down/ stand up, reach high to the sky/ low to the ground, etc). We had a fun jam-packed week!
The preschoolers had another fun filled week learning about wind, water, and the letter O. We started the week off with balloon races. We threaded yarn through straws then tied the yarn between two chairs, creating a track. Next the balloons were taped to the straws and a fan was positioned behind the chairs. After turning the fan on high speed, we were ready to race! The children had so much fun watching the balloons, they even chose sides and cheered on their favorite racers. While on the topic of wind, the preschoolers had a discussion about how the wind moves. Jenna said, "the wind is swirly and you can tell because it blows things all around". Using her description of wind, the children made "swirly wind" paintings which look beautiful hanging up on the classroom wall. Our friends in the preschool 3 classroom cannot get enough of conducting new experiments. This week we put lettuce and celery in cups of colored water to see what would happen. Mary Kate correctly predicted that "the lettuce and celery will turn the color of the water". The recent snowfall made for a fun sensory experience. The children brought the snow into the classroom and had a great time exploring and painting it. To go along with the letter of the week, the preschoolers made an "O is for Octopus" craft. Making "alphabet soup" was a fun way to work on letter recognition skills, as was hunting for the letter O throughout the classroom. Math skills were strengthened while using unifix cubes to create and solve addition problems and fine motor skills were put to work as the children practiced writing their names.
It was another great week in Pre-K1! This week the children celebrated the letter “O,” learned about Rosa Parks in celebration of Black History Month approaching and practiced their writing by writing about diversity. To celebrate the letter “O” the children learned how to write the letter, come up with words that start with the letter, and find and color letter “O” pictures. Our “O” craft this week was making an octopus. The children had to count the octopus’ legs and arms making sure that they had 8 and then glue them on. They also glued on Cheerios to represent the octopus’ suckers. They came out awesome! The children completed their final writing assignment on diversity to add to their January journals. They practiced writing the phrase, “We are all created equal.” They are continuing to practice writing in lowercase letters and using the correct lines. To go along with our writing assignment, we read many books and listened to a read aloud on Rosa Parks. After our read aloud we discussed how Rosa Parks felt. One of the little boys in the class expressed how sad he felt for her. Lastly, in math the children practiced subtraction. They used counters to help them figure out subtraction problems and they practiced writing numbers up to 20. They worked really hard on their work this week, but they also had a lot of fun playing! Pre-K1 wants to give Eiliyah Richardson, her mother Sabrina Haskins, and the Braintree Target a big thank you for donating St. Mary’s many books to kick off Black History Month. We could not be more appreciative.
Pre-K 2 had a great week and continue to be very busy in the classroom. Throughout the week we split up into group and played fun learning games. They loved working together with their group. We also talked about snow and how it is formed. Each child had a turn looking at snow under a magnify glass. They said they saw crystals.
For a fun hands on art activity we brought the snow inside. They used watercolors to paint on the snow to make it colorful. We also explored the snow by touching it and estimated how long it would take for the large cup of snow to melt. It took just under 3 hours.
It has been another busy week for the little scientists in the PK3 classroom! They used washable markers and coffee filters to experiment with chromatography. After drawing a dark circle and folding their filters into triangles, they carefully placed the tip into water. It only took a few seconds for the chemical reaction to begin and they were so intrigued that they got down on the floor and continued to watch. After allowing them to dry overnight, the children opened them up and could not believe how beautiful they were. We decided to make them into butterflies and flowers. They also had the opportunity to explore real snow! They looked at it under a microscope and made predictions about how long it would take to melt inside vs. outside. They were each given individual portions of snow to make snow sculptures and then they were allowed to paint them. They came up with some amazing creations! After listening to the story Snowmen All Year by Caralyn Buehner, they got busy writing and illustrating their own mini books. They imagined what they would do during each of the four seasons if they had a snowman that could last all year long. We may have some future authors on our hands!! Have a great weekend!