What's New?

APRIL, 2018

3…2…1…BLASTOFF!!!

The airplanes have taken flight and this week we blasted off beyond the Earth’s atmosphere and to explore our galaxy! We have had fun decorating our giant cardboard box rocket ship with markers and stickers.   Our loft is now a space shuttle and we have had several astronauts (in astronaut costumes!) climb aboard. Soon, we will try “walking on the moon” with sponges rubber-banded to our shoes as we walk on the textured surface of pillows and bedsheets! Over the next 2 weeks, we will be learning about planets, constellations, and more! **If anyone is connected to someone related to space shuttles or astronomy, please let me know if they would want to come in as a guest speaker!**

Prior to our departure to outer space, our loft was transformed into a passenger plane complete with a control panel and throttle, pilot hat, seats, wings and windows. The kids found the airplane ticket with their name and rode to various places, from the North Pole to Hawai`i! Many kids loved being the pilot, while others enjoyed serving food aboard the “plane”, while some just loved to sit back and relax. Many drew airplanes from stencils, others made airplanes from cardboard tubes or popsicle sticks, while others created straw and loop flying things and tried their hand and flying them through a hula hoop. At Work/Play, we had many plane related choices, as well as other fun materials to work on their letters, numbers, patterns, scissors cutting, and fine motor. They tossed a dice to see how many people they could put on a passenger plane or how many planes to place on a runway with the corresponding number. They also matched lower case letters to the upper case letters written on pictures of airplane wings. During Circle time, we also learned about inventors that are credited with flying some of the first planes, including a discussion about who flew the Wright Brothers or Alberto Santos-Dumont, a Brazilian inventor! (Thanks to Emma F.’s mom for letting me know about Santos-Dumont!)

One of the highlights of our airplane focus was a visit from an actual air traffic controller, Colin’s dad! This was such a treat!  He spoke to the kids about what it's like to be an air traffic controller, showing them pictures of the outside and inside of an air traffic control tower as well as the maps/screens that they see. He also taught them the "phonetic alphabet" that they use to communicate with and showed them his special headset.  The kids were so happy--I think nearly ALL of the kids raised their hands to ask him a question or to share an airplane related story!

During our study of boats (prior to airplanes), your kids may have come home mentioning a boat that we learned about called the Hokule'a (its name means "Star of Gladness").  This double hulled canoe (and its crews) from Hawai'i is credited with reviving the art of wayfinding (using only the stars, wind, waves, and animal behavior to navigate).  Over the last several years, this canoe started with shorter voyages from Hawai'i to Tahiti then progressed to a worldwide voyage that took four years to complete.  The boat even docked in Boston and Portsmouth two years ago, but now it has returned to Hawai`i.  Many of the kids were delighted to be able to easily relate to this canoe through the movie Moana.  It was a great joy to share about this amazing boat and its journey with our class.  They created their own scenes of the canoe using popsicle/craft sticks, tissue paper, star stickers, and coffee filter sails stamped with their own craft stick stamps. You can see these on the bulletin board in one of the classrooms. We will also revisit traveling by the stars during our study of space! If you or your children are interested in learning more about this canoe, please visit the webpage: www.hokulea.com. (Some of you may know that I grew up in Hawai`i, which is why this boat has special significance to me.)  

We are making our way through the alphabet and are now on the letter W! I will be sending home the second page of Zoo Phonics motions soon. Please continue to practice the motions with your kids. Knowledge of phonics is a great stepping stone to reading. It’s amazing how many kids know the letter sounds when they see the Zoo Phonics cards. And the kids have fun doing the motions, too! When you are out and about with your kids, see if they can spot any upper or lower case letters from A through W (or beyond)!

Now that Spring is here, it has been so much fun for the kids to have LOTS of time for outside play! Now that the snow has melted, they have been able to play on the playground again! We are looking forward to lots of time for the kids to get outside to breathe in the fresh air and warmer temperatures.

IMPORTANT: On Friday, April 6, we will be having a FULL DAY of school from 8:15 AM - 2:15 PM.  This is to make up for the two days that we missed due to no heat at the school.  The kids will bring a lunch and will have an afternoon filled with an extra Circle time, extra Free Play, extra outside play and more!  Conferences will still be held in the morning until 12:30 PM.  If you need to pick up your child before 2:15 PM, please let us know so we can be sure that they are ready to go when you arrive. 

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me via e-mail at: nlauchien@gmail.com to set up a time to chat by phone or in person.

Zoo Phonics Motions:

t = Timothy Tiger

u = Umber Umbrella Bird

v = Vinnie Vampire Bat

w = Willie Weasel

 

ALPHABET SONGS:

T Song: The Tooth Fairy

(Tune: “Farmer in the Dell”)

The Tooth Fairy comes tonight

The Tooth Fairy comes tonight

My tiny tooth fell out today.

The Tooth Fairy comes tonight

She’ll tiptoe towards my bed

She’ll tiptoe towards my bed

She’ll take my tooth and leave a trinket tucked beneath my head.

 

U Song: Up and Away

(Tune: Row, Row, Row Your Boat)

Up, up, up and away until it’s out in space

The rocket soars through the universe

At an unbelievable pace

Up, up, up and away

Toward Uranus or Mars

My uncle and I see the rocket zoom

Underneath the stars

 

V Song: Victor the Vulture

(Tune: Alouette)

Victor the Vulture is the village vet

He is very good with a variety of pets

All the village animals think he’s very nice

Victor gives them vitamins and valuable advice

Victor the vulture is the village vet

 

W Song: The County Fair

(Tune: “Muffin Man”)

Wearing all our western wear

We walk into the county fair

We want to go on the wild ride

We’ll have to wait in line

We watch a woman win a prize

For baking wonderful apple pies

We ride in a wagon full of hay

Waving all the way

 

Upcoming Dates:

April 5th & 6th - Parent-Teacher Conferences

April 6th - Upper Preschool Makeup Day, 8:15 am – 2:15 PM

April 23 – 27 – NO SCHOOL – Spring Vacation

 

 

 





 

 

 







 






 


 




 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



 


 

 
   

 



 











 


 


 




   

 

 

 

 






 



 



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