December 20, 2007

-- Newsletter from Emma's class

Hello everyone! We wanted to let you know what has been going on in the classroom over the past month. We wrapped our music unit last week and we are so pleased to say that it went so well. The kids had a great time with it and they were really the ones who started all the investigation about music. We played different types of instruments, wrote songs, painted and drew to music, etc. We had a lot of fun with it and we thank you for sharing your child's instruments with us. They were eager to show their friends how to use them!

The kids' play has really expanded lately. The children have also been more interested in the Legos. This is a great toy that enhances math skills and fine motor development and is just simply a lot of fun to play with. They have shown much creativity with their art. They love to experiment with color mixing as well as folding the paper to see how their painting has changed. The sensory table is always a popular spot, whether it's filled with snow, water, dried pasta, etc. The kids are constantly communicating with each other and problem-solving. A lot of language development occurs here. The writing table is as ays busy with the kids drawing/writing stories and pictures. They also write down their observations and thoughts at the discovery table and in the block area. They publish their work by taping it to the walls. If you haven't already seen the "writing room", you may want to stop in and take a peek because it is great!

They have been VERY interested in marbles and the marble maze (a great holiday present ©). When they put it together, they really have to think about how the pieces need to fit in order for the marble to roll down. We have added toilet paper tubes to this area for them to expand their ideas. This is a great physical science activity. Block building has been taken to a new level. The children are constantly building garages, houses, etc. for the cars and animals. We have started to take anecdotes from them about what they are building. We take a picture of it with the kids and will be putting it in our "Block Book" that will be available for them to look at in that area. Playing with the animals is also something each of them does on a daily basis. Again, a lot of language development and problem-solving skills occur during these activities.

Since they are so interested in the animals, we have decided to do our next unit on HIBERNATION. We started discussing what that means and have made predictions about which animals may hibernate. Over the next couple of weeks, they will figure out through investigation which ones do or do not hibernate. We have many activities planned for this, including art, science, pre-math, literacy, and language; as well as learning all about the animals that hibernate, their daily habits, etc. So far, they have been really excited when we talk about it at circle time and read books about the topic; it has already expanded into their play.

INVESTIGATORS' NEWSLETTER - dec, 2007

Posted by Xun  |  2 comments

-- Newsletter from Emma's class

Hello everyone! We wanted to let you know what has been going on in the classroom over the past month. We wrapped our music unit last week and we are so pleased to say that it went so well. The kids had a great time with it and they were really the ones who started all the investigation about music. We played different types of instruments, wrote songs, painted and drew to music, etc. We had a lot of fun with it and we thank you for sharing your child's instruments with us. They were eager to show their friends how to use them!

The kids' play has really expanded lately. The children have also been more interested in the Legos. This is a great toy that enhances math skills and fine motor development and is just simply a lot of fun to play with. They have shown much creativity with their art. They love to experiment with color mixing as well as folding the paper to see how their painting has changed. The sensory table is always a popular spot, whether it's filled with snow, water, dried pasta, etc. The kids are constantly communicating with each other and problem-solving. A lot of language development occurs here. The writing table is as ays busy with the kids drawing/writing stories and pictures. They also write down their observations and thoughts at the discovery table and in the block area. They publish their work by taping it to the walls. If you haven't already seen the "writing room", you may want to stop in and take a peek because it is great!

They have been VERY interested in marbles and the marble maze (a great holiday present ©). When they put it together, they really have to think about how the pieces need to fit in order for the marble to roll down. We have added toilet paper tubes to this area for them to expand their ideas. This is a great physical science activity. Block building has been taken to a new level. The children are constantly building garages, houses, etc. for the cars and animals. We have started to take anecdotes from them about what they are building. We take a picture of it with the kids and will be putting it in our "Block Book" that will be available for them to look at in that area. Playing with the animals is also something each of them does on a daily basis. Again, a lot of language development and problem-solving skills occur during these activities.

Since they are so interested in the animals, we have decided to do our next unit on HIBERNATION. We started discussing what that means and have made predictions about which animals may hibernate. Over the next couple of weeks, they will figure out through investigation which ones do or do not hibernate. We have many activities planned for this, including art, science, pre-math, literacy, and language; as well as learning all about the animals that hibernate, their daily habits, etc. So far, they have been really excited when we talk about it at circle time and read books about the topic; it has already expanded into their play.

Thursday, December 20, 2007
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2 comments:

December 07, 2007


I have posted this on my techie blog: Programmatically Speaking. But since this is very important to me, I double post here.

Knowledgable friends always admonish me: "Do not send your kids to a public school, Otherwise you will ruin them. Move to the surburb. "

Well, there are so many sides of Chicago public schools, good ones, not-so-good ones, bad ones ..., magnet, classical, gifted centers, community ... test-based, open-enrollment, lottery picked ... Based on the 2006 Chicago Sun Times school ranking, it turned out, the best elementary school in the state of Illinois is not from the upper-class suburb Wilmette, or Buffalo Grove, or Barrington, it is Decatur Classical right here in north Chicago. There are other eight schools made in the top 50 elementary schools of the state Illinois.

From next year on, I will cross my fingers for Emma to get in one of them. (Or have not I already?)

The map is available at: Chicago Elementary Schools Ranked Among Top 50 State Wide (based on Sun Times 2006 rankings). I will soon make another map based on 2007 rankings.

Chicago Elementary Schools Ranked Among top 50 State Wide

Posted by Xun  |  No comments


I have posted this on my techie blog: Programmatically Speaking. But since this is very important to me, I double post here.

Knowledgable friends always admonish me: "Do not send your kids to a public school, Otherwise you will ruin them. Move to the surburb. "

Well, there are so many sides of Chicago public schools, good ones, not-so-good ones, bad ones ..., magnet, classical, gifted centers, community ... test-based, open-enrollment, lottery picked ... Based on the 2006 Chicago Sun Times school ranking, it turned out, the best elementary school in the state of Illinois is not from the upper-class suburb Wilmette, or Buffalo Grove, or Barrington, it is Decatur Classical right here in north Chicago. There are other eight schools made in the top 50 elementary schools of the state Illinois.

From next year on, I will cross my fingers for Emma to get in one of them. (Or have not I already?)

The map is available at: Chicago Elementary Schools Ranked Among Top 50 State Wide (based on Sun Times 2006 rankings). I will soon make another map based on 2007 rankings.

Friday, December 07, 2007
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