Me, Myself, and I

We learned about that rascally letter “i,” which isn’t very reliable. The children are now writing words that have a capital or lowercase “i” by themselves on our weekly chart; as Darling finds a word, Darling simply grabs a marker and adds it to our list while letting the class know. We circled all the “i”s in our reading group books, and looked (and found) 20 “i”s in a letter search.  

My Many Colored Days
By Dr. Seuss
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We spent a great deal of time this week chatting about our feelings. We discussed how our bodies might feel while experiencing a particular emotion. We watched a video my daughters, Morgane & Jacqueline, shared with me about a brave mini horse leaving a stall. We’ll continue this exploration next week in more depth. 

— Christine

Science Thursday: Wind & Air

Hello All,

In science this week we talked about wind energy and air movement and how these things can help us in every day life (vacuuming, flying, sailboats, sneezing, etc.).  We talked about two ways in which wind movement helps us move boats and fly planes, catching the wind/air (like a sailboat and windmills) and redirecting the wind/air with an airfoil  (like flying and wind turbines).

The kids made pinwheels paying attention to the shape so that its blades could both catch the wind when blown from the side and redirect the wind via the airfoil shape when blown from the front. 

The Oaks and I also had a contest to see who could blow a lego car with a sail across the table with the least amount of breaths. Not to be showy, but I won :).

Good times, Olga (Acorn mom and scientist)

Construction Continues . . .

Christine: The group worked diligently on a “governmental military building” involving all four orange cones, all but one tire, timber, boards, many ropes, two wheelbarrows and the slide. This was only one of several buildings that were constructed and manned this week.  This was then dismantled and all the tires and cones were strategically moved to the top of the jungle gym to become an as yet to be determined new structure.  

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Notice the zip-line!

Week Eighteen: Penguins

Rachel (Oak mom): Meanwhile, the third graders are reading this fabulous classic.

Christine (lead teacher of the Acorns): Did you know I have many, many penguins writing letters to me? So many, in fact, that I can’t keep up with all the responses.  Together, the class wrote a letter to one of the penguins, and then Darling wrote a postcard to another penguin.  Whew…almost caught up in my responses.  We learned many facts about penguins this week, as well as revisiting Tacky and his crew:  Goodly, Lovely, Angel, Neatly and Perfect. 

Mr. Popper's Penguins
By Richard Atwater, Florence Atwater

A Few of Our Favorite Books

Jill (Acorn mom): We "read" the book "You Choose" for a year straight. It’s a book where the kid tells the story by choosing the characters, what they wear, where they live, and what they do. My son loved having control of the story. Now that he is learning to read, those skills are really shining through. He has a keen eye for details and loves weaving a story by looking at the pictures. He can pull out words on the page from the pictures. We read the book so much we had to buy a new copy. :)

You Choose
Kane Miller

Rachel (Oak mom): Both my kids loved this when they were little, and it’s one of those children’s books that has some quiet wisdom for parents, too. In this simple story, a boy plants a seed. Everyone says it won’t grow, but he tends it carefully nonetheless. Guess what? Eventually, it does grow. Keep this in mind when you are convinced that your kid will never learn to use the potty, learn to read, learn to drive, or move out of your basement. With a little encouragement from you, they will.

Planning a Winter Solstice Celebration

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Since this is our first year as a school we are creating traditions we hope last well into the future. It seems one of these traditions is celebrating the seasons as a community. On November 1st we celebrated the Fall with a Fall Festival. The students spent extra time outside among the trees, read Fall themed books, completed an acorn painting, counted seeds in two large pumpkins, and enjoyed homemade applesauce they cooked together.

We’re lucky to be in school on the shortest day of the year this year! It’s also the day before our Winter Break. To celebrate the return of the light we are planning a fun Winter Solstice Celebration. I happen to have a 10 month old so I have plenty of baby food jars laying around. Each student will get their own jar and make their own candle.

Earlier in the week I plan on having the students do this fun activity. I would do it during our celebration but I have a feeling they won’t dry in time to be sent home that day.

For lunch, all the families will be invited to take part in a potluck. It should be a warm, celebration of the season as we all gather together and celebrate.

Stay tuned for pictures from our celebration. Before we know it we’ll be celebrating Spring and then Summer!