Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving!

I want to thank everyone who attended parent teacher conferences and for those yet to come today.  I am very grateful to be teaching Preschool here in Keystone and for the opportunity to be working with your children.  Each and everyone one blesses my life!  I hope you have a wonderful break with your families!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Exciting news!

I am sharing this exciting sight I had the pleasure to witness in our art center this week at preschool.  You may remember in our Math lessons, we have been learning about different ways numbers are represented and one of those ways was tally marks.  Check out what students were busy working on during center time on Tuesday.

I witnessed several students making tally marks and discussing how many they had in their groups.  Notice how they correctly "closed the gate" with the 5th tally marks!  This is in preschool!  I had one student draw two sets of 5 tally marks and come and show me and say, "There's five and five, that makes ten".  I was super excited about this because, having taught Kindergarten last year, I know that this is something that we worked in in Kindergarten and to see our preschoolers grasp it and apply it was thrilling to me.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Preschool News: Week of November 16-20

What we've been learning:

Read it Again: The Night Before Preschool
Print Knowledge: We continue to work on recognizing the left to right and top to bottom directionality of print.  

Vocabulary: Our target words are first, next, then, last.  We reviewed classroom routines and discussed what we had to do in order.  

Narrative: We will work on identifying and describing major events in the story.  

Phonological Awareness:  We will work on segmenting words into syllables and blending syllables into words.    

Additional Children's Literature: This is the Turkey & Thanksgiving Feast  

Numbers: 5 & 6 We are focusing on number value.  Students are learning the number and are asked to show items to represent the quantity for the number.  There is a discussion that follows when we have too few or too many items and we have to think how can we make it right, do we take away or need to add to and how many...   

Jolly Phonics Letter: Rr  We review our letters/sounds we have learned so far every day at preschool.  Most students know all of the letters we have learned so far which is awesome!! 

Report Cards:  Report cards will be sent home in your child's folder on Thursday, November 19th.  I want to explain the report cards a little for you.  For three year olds, we only asked that they be able to point to letters, numbers, shapes and colors when we named them.  For four year olds, they were expected to be able to tell us what letter, shape, number, color, etc. we were showing them.  On the report card, there is a key that explains what M, P, and AC mean.  M=meeting expectation, P=progressing towards expectation, AC=area of concern.  Students need to meet specific criteria to be at each level.  At the beginning of our preschool year, it is not expected that every preschool student have all M's.  We are learning and growing and what our report card should show is progression over the school year.  By the end of the school year, I would love to see M's for all our students, but now we are a work in progress and that growth should be celebrated!  I look forward to answering any questions you may have at parent teacher conferences.  

Reminder: Parent teacher conferences are Nov. 23 & 24.  There is no preschool on Nov. 24 to accommodate for our 38 preschool families for conferences.    

Monday, November 9, 2015

Preschool News: Week of Nov. 9-13

What we've been learning:

Read it Again:  The Letters are Lost
Print Knowledge: We are continuing to work on recognizing that we read print from left to right and top to bottom.  

Vocabulary: Our focus words for this lesson are admired, peeked and squished.  We are working on understanding and using these new words by going on a search in our classroom for things that can squish for example and not squish.

Narrative: We are acting out events from the story and asking students to recall what action specific letters were doing on each page.  

Phonological Awareness:  We are graphing our names to see how many syllables our names have.  

Additional Children's Literature: Every Buddy Counts & Feast for Ten  

Numbers: #3 & #4  When we introduce the numbers, we are showing the students the ways these numbers can be represented such as through ten frames, fingers, tally marks, dice, dominoes to increase exposure and awareness to the value of each number.  Here is a picture of one of our number posters to demonstrate what we are learning.

Jolly Phonics Letter: Hh As I am assessing students for report cards, I am super excited about the growth I have seen in letter recognition and letter sounds since the beginning of the school year!  It is a great idea to be reviewing these at home as well to provide additional practice.   

Birthday Treats:  With all of the birthdays this month, I wanted to take a moment to remind you that any treats brought to school need to be pre-packaged and store bought.  This is explained in our preschool handbook.  Thank you!  

Book Orders:  Book orders are due on Thursday, Nov. 12th.  

Dressing:  Preschool students are learning how to dress themselves for recess.  In an effort to reward progress in this area, students are able to add their names to the door when they are able to do this for themselves.  For four year olds, they need to be able to put their coat on and zip it themselves and for three year olds, they need to put their coat on themselves. 

Reminder:  If you have not signed up for a parent teacher conference, please call the office at 319-442-3221 to sign up for a time.  Conferences will be held Monday, Nov. 23 from 3:30-7:30 and Tuesday, Nov. 24 from 7:30-7:30.  There will be no preschool on Tuesday, Nov. 24.  

New Centers:

Our grocery store has opened with huge success!  Students are engaged in great social, language, math, and literacy skills at this center.  What great fun it is to write your name when you want to write it on your name badge for working at the store!
Alphabet soup was in our sensory table this week.  Students are practicing fine motor development, recognizing letters of the alphabet, learning social skills development such as turn taking and requesting for an item and language skills while having conversations with peers.  

The problem solving that occurs when building a train track is phenomenal.  How do I build this so it hooks up and my train runs the right way?  Social and language skills are also utilized as we work together to decide which way our trains should go.  

Learning during center time is essential towards our development in preschool.  Engaging, child initiated activities promote the development of the whole child.  

Thanks for reading and have a great week!
Mrs. Benton

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Preschool News Week of Nov. 2-6

What we've been learning:

Read it Again:  Rumble in the Jungle
Print Knowledge: We continue to work on recognizing the left to right and top to bottom directionality of print.

Vocabulary: We are working on time concept words of before and after and participated in an activity to discuss events that occurred in our story using these terms.  We also discussed daily routines that we have to do in order such as putting our toothpaste on our toothbrush before we brush our teeth.

Narrative:  We used pictures of animals in the story and each student had the chance to recall and tell what each animal liked to do in the story.

Phonological Awareness:  Using animal pictures from the story we clapped out the syllables in each word and sorted them based on the number of syllables each word had.

Incredible Flexible You:  Whole Body Listening  Mr. Junge came and read our story this week to both our morning and afternoon classes.  Our students demonstrated great whole body listening and we earned five puff balls towards our party puff jar for our respectful behavior.  I apologize for only having a picture of our morning class listening to Mr. Junge reading.  A big THANK YOU to Mr. Junge for spending time reading to our classes!
We have completed our Incredible Flexible You 5 book series but will be revisiting the concepts throughout the year.  

Numbers:  We are going to be really focusing on introducing numbers and understanding quantities associated with each number.  Example 5= * * * * * The numbers for this week are #1 & #2.

Jolly Phonics Letter: Ee

New Centers:  
Dramatic Play: Grocery Store!!
Blocks: Trains 
Sensory: Kidfetti
Discovery: Color Paddles

Thanks for reading and have a great rest of your week!