Summer Recap: The children had a blast this summer! Our summer included sessions of water play, bubble play and waterslides every other week. The children had fun filled moments during these activities. Apart from these regular activities, there was a School Carnival which was universally enjoyed by the children and many participating parents. We had a science party from the visiting Professor Egghead. The children were intrigued. They especially liked the interactive nature of the show. The visit from the Alhambra Fire Department was another important event. The children listened to the demonstration on fire safety quite intently. Towards the end of summer, the children enjoyed the musical puppet show from the one-man band Ranger Jack, which children loved. Also, they were enthralled by the Stoil Magician. In the garden, we gained a rock garden. The children were able to decorate their own rock which represented and embraced the uniqueness and individuality. The summer program was culminated with the luau, school picnic. Our summer wasn’t all play and frolic. We took time to review, relearn and practice the classroom rules and manners. The children learned how to be polite, share things, and care for our environment. They practiced how to greet each other when they meet in morning. They were also told how and when to compliment. We welcomed our new friends: Suyem, Lucas, Eliana and Evelina in our class and took care to make them feel comfortable and quite at home. We also bid farewell to Emi, Emily, John, Lucas, Daniel and Eleanor. We wish them best in their new endeavors. They will definitely be missed.
September Recap: Let’s take this opportunity to extend a very hearty welcome to the new students and their families and express assurances to the returning students and their parents that we will together strive to maintain or surpass the learning experience you had in this class. Speaking to parents, thank you for the support you extended to the school by attending the Back to School night in such a huge number! New year, new students, the theme of the month was Welcome to the School. We discussed how to take care of the environment and the facilities. What makes each child special and unique? How the families of the children play the important part in molding children’s behavior and learning process. We learned about our World – the land part of it, that is about the seven continents, their position and sizes, the continent songs and how we color them in a map to distinguish one continent from another. The children also learned about the map and globe in general. We also touched on a few ground rules to follow in the classroom and outside while playing. Very appropriately, this month’s book was, “The Kissing Hand,” by Audrey Penn. It is a classic children’s book dealing with separation anxiety faced by the children new to school. When the book was read aloud during circle time, every child paid attention to the story. The character, Chester a young raccoon who is nervous about going to school. His mother kisses his center palm and tells him that “whenever you feel lonely and need a little loving from home, just press your hand to your cheek and think, ‘Mommy loves you. Mommy loves you.'” Chester is comforted and goes to school. Children also learnt about the science of living in Zoology and about plants in the Botany. In physical science we talked about different properties of materials around us, magnetic – nonmagnetic, materials those sink in water versus materials those that float. In our enrichment section, the children explored fun songs and games. In art, how to draw (or make) a self-portrait, a name card and playing with the playdough. The basics of Cooking, Computing and learning the Spanish language were also covered.
October Recap: After the dog days of summer which lasted through the month September in the Southern California, we welcomed the milder fall weather in October. The new children in our class also became more accustomed to the school routine. The children continued to learn new things and hone their current skills. October’s theme was to learn about the five senses. We covered sight, hearing, smelling, touching, and tasting. The students were asked how we feel in common everyday situations. The children were told about different Fire Safety rules and procedures they must follow to be safe during the Fire Safety week. In Geography, we explored our continent, the North America: Countries, lakes, mountains, islands, bays, peninsula, Gulf etc. We learned about the people and their cultures, along with; the animals and plants found in the continent. The book of the month was Steve Metzger’s, “We’re Going on a Leaf Hunt.” We joined three friends on a big fun leaf-finding adventure of hiking over a mountain and through a forest to collect leaves of all kinds and colors. In Montessori activities where the children learned though doing. We covered the nocturnal animals like the owls and bats in Zoology. In Botany, in the spirit of Halloween month, the parts of the Pumpkin, carving of a Pumpkin and lifecycle of it. In science, we explored different states of substance, solid, liquid and gas. The students created Jack-o-Lanterns, Frankenstein’s, and witches in anticipation for Halloween. We had fun creating a “spooky” classroom for the kids to enjoy. Enrichments brought some new lessons for the children, learning about the paintings of Georges Seurat in art class, Mexico and Central America in Spanish class, Mozart in music class, and letters, songs, & colors in computer class.
November Recap: November was centered around “Harvest and Healthy Bodies”. The children enjoyed learning about what foods and activities help our bodies stay strong and healthy. The kids also discovered the different parts of a bird in Zoology and parts of a tree in Botany. During circle time the children learned about the importance of Veterans Day and why it is celebrated. For Geography we discussed our beautiful state of California, from the flag, to the culture/traditions, to the landmarks, to our amazing national parks. Our book of the month was “Fill a Bucket” by Carol McCloud, the children shared ways to fill each other’s invisible buckets by being good friends to one another. Lastly, we talked about Thanksgiving and what it means to be thankful. The children created their own thankful turkeys and stated four things they were extremely grateful for ranging from their moms and dads to their toys and pets and all the sweet and silly stuff in between.
November’s Enrichments were filled with lots of fun activities for the month. In art, the children learned about artist Jackson Pollock and his splatter technique. In music, they covered Beethoven and his famous compositions. In cooking class, they made some delicious fall snacks like cinnamon apple crisps, mini pumpkin pie Rice Krispies treats and a pumpkin smoothie. In computer, they continued to work on ABCMOUSE and in Spanish, they were introduced to the months of the year and the body parts.
December Recap: December being the last month of the year, the theme was “Seasons & Holidays”! We talked and enlightened our young participants about the other festivities and holidays falling in the month, apart from overwhelmingly popular Christmas. The children were wide-eyed to know about the traditions and values associated with the festivities like Hanukah and Kwanzaa and compared them with those of Christmas. We also highlighted on when we were transitioning from the fall to the winter season and what are the differences and similarities between these two seasons. In Geography, we learned about Europe – the continent with many small developed countries with people who first discovered America and were the early immigrants to our parts of the world. We talked about countries of Europe, their Maps, Landmarks, Flags, and traditional foods. In Circle time and Share Day (Friday) we emphasized how to be respectful of all the festivities irrespective what you celebrate at home. In the month of giving, the book of the month was fittingly “The Giving Tree” by Shel Silverstein, which describes a relationship between a person and an apple tree in every stage of their lives. It depicts how the tree without receiving anything from the person, happily always gave the person something. In Zoology, we learned about the body parts of a horse and reindeer. In Botany we delved in Conifer trees like Pine and Douglas Firs. In Science, we talked about the three states of the matter: Solid, Liquid and Gas. How the transformation between the states take place and how do they compare from one another. In Grace and Courtesy, we discussed how to cover our nose and mouth while sneezing or coughing and how to gracefully give or receive something from another person. During December’s music enrichments, we listened and sang to classic Holiday Carols. We also talked about holiday songs from around the world. In Art, we discussed and showed pictures of the most renowned paintings of the great Vincent van Gogh like “The Starry Night”,” Wheatfield with Crows” etc. The children were encouraged to draw their version of these paintings in watercolor. The children drew the Christmas tree and decorated it with ornaments. In cooking we used ingredients such as garlic parmesan zucchini chips, bites of frozen blueberry yogurt and reindeer shaped celery sticks. In computers the children continued working on ABCMOUSE.com and in Spanish, they were introduced to the name of the seasons, colors, and number from one to ten.
January Recap: On behalf of my class let me extend our warmest felicitations of the New Year to all. The first month of the year is normally the coldest. It is also customarily the rainiest month in Southern California. But this year except for some brief spell it was neither very cold nor was that rainy. In wintry days we all like to stay indoors and preserve our energies. Thus, the theme of the month was “Winter Animals and Hibernation”. We talked about winter animals, polar bears and snow dogs and how they hibernate. In Geography, snowy Antarctica was the continent which we had explored. During circle time we continued our discussion on winter and animals. We read aloud the book of the month “The Mitten” and discussed how the animals crowded into a strayed mitten (fingerless glove) in a snowy winter to avoid the chill until a tiny mouse managed to disturb the coziness. The same winter theme pervaded in our discussion in Zoology, Botany and Science classes
During January’s enrichment classes, the children learned songs from the popular musical “The Sound of Music”. In art, they drew their own version of the famous painting: “The Squares with Concentric Circles” by Wassily Kandinsky. In cooking, the children tried the preparations of mozzarella olive penguins, polar bear paw puddings etc. In computer, the children continued working on ABCMOUSE.com and in Spanish, they reviewed past lessons and learned about body parts, five senses, the seasons, and number from 1-10.
February Recap: February is the month of love and friendship since Valentine’s Day is found in this month. This month is also known as Black History Month, National Children’s Dental Health Month, as well as American Heart Month. We celebrate these as well as President’s Day, where the children learned about our two most beloved presidents Lincoln and Washington. The theme for this month was Friendship and Cultural Awareness. During circle time we talked about how to be a good friend, as well as the different traditions and values
prevalent in the Asian nations such as China, India, Japan and Korea. Since some of the children’s families come from these countries they were able to better comprehend, as well as share with their classmates from their point of view.
The book of the month was Little Blue and Little Yellow by Leo Lionni which helped the children better understand the meaning of friendship with its story and illustrations. The children were amazed to learn why little blue and little yellow turned green when they hugged, this introduced primary colors to the class. In geography, we covered the important landmarks and monuments of the Asian countries mentioned above. Some of the including The Great Wall and the Terracotta Armies of China, the Taj Mahal of India, the Mount Fuji and Tokyo Towers of Japan, as well as the different flags of each country. Similarly, in Zoology and Botany the children learned about the different animals of Asia like the elephant, Bengal tiger and Panda Bear and the different plants of Asia, such as the bamboo.
March News: In March, the children will be learning about the great tropical rainforests of the Amazon, the people and the animals that reside in the South American Rainforest. In geography we will explore different landmarks and landforms of South America like the Andes, Patagonia and Amazon. In botany and zoology, we will cover South American plants and animals like the jaguar and the green Anaconda. We will also celebrate the birthday of the great Dr. Seuss reading his greatest books throughout the month. In enrichments, the children will learn the different songs from Latin America for example, the Argentine Tango and Brazilian Samba. In art, we will have projects associated with Dr. Seuss, Spring, and St. Patrick’s Day. In cooking we will have recipes inspired by those in the books by Dr. Seuss.
Thank you in advance to those who sign-up for snack host and continue to bring yummy snacks for the classroom to enjoy.