Mrs. Rounder & Mrs. Sowell
A Reggio Inspired Project Connecting
Whoa!! It's so cool.
I can't believe we got to see a real heart! I saw the tiny strings inside. They were so small. I thought they were chicken bones but now I know they are called heart strings.
-Lily and Lena
The blue is the oxygen moving in your body. Your fingers need oxygen to wiggle and your brain needs oxygen to think!
After exploring and studying the human heart, the girls were ready to see a real heart. Through a partnership with the upper school lab program, our girls were offered the incredible experience to put on gloves and explore like a real scientist. As they worked closely with a partner and an upper school girl, they were able to point out different parts of the heart and talk about what they saw. Our visit to the lab solidified our new learning while allowing the girls a hands on experience that they will remember always.
It's so cold!
Yuck!! It smells....ewwww....
WHOA! I think I see an artery.
Look at the veins. You can see them right there.
These are called the heart strings.
It's not a real heart from a person. It's from an animal. So I think it looks different...
It's so cool! I can't believe we can see a real heart.
Art For The Heart
After exploring our many emotions, we invited some of our favorite people into our classroom to spend a morning painting with the ones we love...
I love my mommy because she takes me to go get ice cream....
I love my mommy because....
Your shadow looks just like you.....
because it is you!
Shadows... We see them every day, inside and outside, everywhere we go. It's interesting how significant they are, and we don't pay much attention to them.
In JK we took the opportunity to explore something so simple to our girls yet so valuable and deep in concept and magnitude. By learning about light and shadow and then experimenting with it, our girls have created a deeper understanding. The concepts we covered through this exploration are as follows:
A Conversation at the Projector...
Using the light from the projector, we invited the girls to explore light and shadow. We noticed the girls gravitate towards creating an animal using their hands. They also used various manipulatives to create shadows. Each girl had a different idea about what she was making. Some worked independently while some worked cooperatively.
The excitement grew and grew as we noticed the girls recognizing shadows every chance they could. We watched them continue our shadow exploration on the way to lunch and even on the playground.
Look at my shadow!
It looks like a spider.
Yeah! and it's crawling up its web.
Mine looks like a little tiny bunny. Do you see her ears?
Let me try! Mine looks like an alligator with really sharp teeth.
It's not a very sunny day today. I guess we won't see our shadows.
When it's cold outside I like to sit by the fire with my mom and dad to stay warm.
Our return from holiday break greeted us with COLD weather. The change was undeniable...
It's SO cold!! Look at all my cold clothes...I have to wear mittens, a hat, and a coat...
We took this as an opportunity to talk about what cold weather means for us. Our observations and understanding of cold weather helped us begin a new study of how changes in season affect people and animals.
Mrs. Rounder: What does cold weather mean to you?
Lily: Sometimes it means getting sick...like when you catch a cold. But cold weather means you should stay by the fire.
Kaylei: It means that you have to wear a coat!
Evan: Cold means windy to me...
Gracie: Cold weather means that people have to dress differently and animals have to go places to stay warm. Some animals in the North Pole like the cold.
Mrs. Rounder: What do you like to do when it's cold outside?
Meriwether: I like to play with Ruthie and build a snowman with her.
Taylor: I like to put on lots of clothes and go outside. Sometimes we try to build a snowman.
Rhodes: I love to go skiing in Colorado. It's so much fun. I did that last year.
Lena: I love to play outside!
Mrs. Rounder: What does it mean for something to freeze?
Parker: It means that there is ice. One time I saw icicles in my backyard!
Ivy Grace: It means it's cold and there is just a little red on the thermometer.
Abigail: When it's freezing outside that means you have to dress in a coat and a hat and boots.
Sara: Something freezes when it's really cold outside...or when it's in the freezer.
Dramatic play continues to provide a wonderful way to explore literacy. As we have embarked on our new study, the girls used arctic animals and other manipulatives as a way to create stories. During our Story Workshop time, many of the girls selected arctic animals as characters, planned, and executed a story. Upon completion, the girls shared the stories with their friends.
| || |
As we furthered our investigation of cold temperature, we began to explore areas of our world where freezing temperatures are prevalent. In the Science Center, the girls learned to locate the North Pole, South Pole, and the frigid zones on a globe. They also discovered how to distinguish the difference between land and water on a globe. We have been tracking the temperature daily to help recognize the changes in temperature, and are even learning how to read a thermometer.
This is my arctic hare. She likes to hunt for food on the tundra. She loves to find plants to eat.
As we continued studying the North and South Pole, we discovered that both people and animals live in these freezing areas of our world. We wondered...
Where do they live? How do they stay warm? What do they eat?
The girls selected a polar animal of interest to them. Using various classroom books and our IPads, we researched and discovered many answers to our questions. We extended the invitation for parental support in the research process as well. As we continued our project, the girls explored literature to select a picture that represented their animal in its natural habitat. From here we challenged the girls to….
Bring the Arctic to life in our classroom.
Look closely to find our arctic animals in their habitats.
Orca whales are great swimmers because they are really fast! They like to swim in the icy waters and hunt for fish to eat.
My moose is very nice. He lives in the arctic on the land. Sometimes he uses his antlers to fight with another moose.
A Conversation In
Did you know that snowflakes have 6 points?
....and they come from the clouds!
They are actually ice crystals and they are even shaped like hexagons.
I bet there are lots of snowflakes in the arctic.
Snowflakes are beautiful. I'm going to make a snowflake with jewels because they sparkle.
Look! My snowflake is the same on both sides! That's symmetry!
Mine looks different from yours. Snowflakes aren't the same.
Do you think it will snow tomorrow?
I hope so...
This year I really hope I learn how to ride my bike without training wheels!
Some of our hopes for the new year...
January marks the half-way point in our junior kindergarten year. For a child, five months is insurmountable. Since August we have seen our girls loose teeth, get new haircuts, grow taller, and celebrate birthdays. We have celebrated, laughed and even cried together. During the first semester, we have grown. These small moments in time make such an impact on our girls. They tell a story that is meaningful and will forever shape them. While January is a perfect time for many to make resolutions and set goals, we wanted to take the opportunity to reflect on how we have grown during the first semester. During our time of reflection we also wanted the girls to focus their thinking towards the new year as they contemplate goals for 2019.
Our return from the holiday break led us on a journey of planning for 2019. We began first by creating a vision board. A vision board simply stated is any sort of board used to display images of goals you may have. Creating and using vision boards serves several purposes and builds certain skills such as
I hope I can go to the Peabody and be the duck master for my birthday! -Taylor
I want to get better at reading. -Parker
I want to become a great builder! -Lily
I hope I can play in the snow. -Lena
In the new year I hope I will make a new friend. -Ivy-Grace
I want to get even better at the monkey bars this year. -Evan
I want to score a goal in soccer this year. -Rhodes
In the new year I want to learn more about numbers and have a play date at the park. -Kaylei
I think I'm going to learn how to ride my bike without training wheels. -Gracie
I want to see fireworks at Horse Shoe. -Meriwether
I hope that my horse Ruthie will get better in the new year. -Abigail
-I want to go to Disney World this year. -Sara
| || |
My teeth have changed since the beginning of the year. I have a wiggly tooth! It's going to fall out soon...
Alongside our vision boards, the girls worked on mid-year self portraits. Creating self-portraits are a key part of learning and are an important element in personal development.
Over the last couple weeks, we challenged the girls to look closely at themselves through the strong and powerful art of self-portrait. We asked the girls to sit down at a table with black pens, a piece of blank paper, and a mirror. This exercise welcomed many conversations for the girls and set the stage for them to explore similarities and differences among each other.
We also extended the project to include loose parts in the Art Center. The girls created an additional portrait using materials such as wire, rocks, beads, pom poms, feathers, and so much more. We invited them to reflect, and then describe the ways that they have grown since last August.
I have longer hair now. See how much it's grown? It's because I haven't had a haircut. -Lily
I think my hair looks darker than it used too.-Gracie
I'm missing 2 teeth now because they feel out...The tooth fairy came to my house too! -Meriwether
What Are We Studying?
During this mini-project we were able to continue our year long study focusing on self-awareness. Our self-awareness study began in August and continues to focus on these guiding questions and ideas:
I can see my eyelashes when I look in the mirror. There are a lot of them! -Abigail
My eyes look big! They are still the same color but they look bigger now. -Evan
I think my hair looks different now than it used to. -Parker
My hair has changed too! -Lena
What is your favorite holiday memory or tradition? During the last week we have challenged the girls to think about this. As we begin a new study focusing on holiday traditions, we felt it was important to stop and look at our own unique family traditions.
Traditions are extremely powerful for a family. Children are most affected by these special traditions. It provides them the opportunity to talk about the people they love the most and the exciting ways each family celebrates. Children enjoy rituals. They find them so interesting, and are extremely engaged when given the opportunity to express their thoughts. By allowing the girls to share their own holiday traditions, they are able to take ownership and share something that belongs to them.
We began conversation about holiday traditions through black pen/watercolor drawings. Next we extended our stories about holiday traditions to clay. The girls brought their traditions to life through their clay pieces. Last, we partnered with our families at home to grow our traditions as each girl created a wire piece to display on our classroom tree. We used the wire pieces as an opportunity to encourage our presentation and speaking skills as each girl was invited to stand and share her family's unique tradition. As we created and shared our experiences, the spirit of the season was displayed for all to see in a 3 dimensional form.
During our study of winter holidays, we have noticed a tradition that is celebrated all around the world. The act of gift giving. The idea of giving and receiving gifts is recognized around the world as an act of love. During the holiday season, gifts are one of the most exciting things for a child. We recently took the opportunity to explore the act of giving and receiving gifts.
Through questioning and conversation our thoughts about gift giving were shared together. As you enjoy browsing our beautiful gifts, be sure to read our responses to see our ideas about this special tradition.
| || |
A gift is something that you give to someone...like happiness. It makes you feel good.
Our Ideas About Gratitude...
What is thankfulness?
Thankfulness means saying thank you to your friends.
It means sharing.
Who or what are you thankful for?
I'm thankful for my whole family.
I really really love Hutchison...and my teachers.
I'm thankful for all of my toys.
I'm thankful for my house and for my puppy.
How can you show your thankfulness?
You can help people who need help. At my church. I'm bringing lotion to give to some people who don't have any.
I like to help people too. It makes me feel good.
Why is it important to be thankful?
Saying thank you is the nice thing to do. We should always say thank you so we remember what we have.
Being thankful makes me feel good.
This November we are especially thankful for...
I am thankful for God and the whole universe! It's where I live with my family.
Sharing Our Thankfulness
We are thrilled you came to visit. Our blog will help you gain insight into the happenings of our day. You will see many of our project studies as well as the center learning, experiences, and opportunitiesyour daughter is exploring during the week. We hope you enjoy.
Mrs. Rounder and Mrs. Sowell