Small Groups=Big Fun and Big Learning! - November 28, 2017Top of Page

[Most of this written by Teacher Kem]

In the past couple of months you may have heard your child say something about their “ group” or “group teacher.”  Or perhaps in the past couple of weeks your child may have said they are changing groups…  

Small Group is the time during the day were the children sit with their group (7 or 8 children) and their group teacher for snack and a group project.  The group project is something that each teacher has planned for their group.  A “project” can be scissor work, playing BINGO or rhyming games, working on sorting or patterning skills (early math skills). It could be open-ended drawing, writing letters, counting, or working on individual puzzles or a big group puzzle. 


At small group, the teacher helps assist the children in alpha-recognition, or reminding them about a proper pencil grip. Small group-time is also an opportunity for the teacher to assess where a child may be in regards to a certain skill-set where the teacher might recognize where a child may need extra instruction, or what a child may have already mastered. 


We change our groups three times during the year. This creates a positive challenge for your child as he/she learns how to be part of a new group of friends. In many instances, changing groups has helped foster new friendships and “team” mentality/behavior.  When we change groups, all of the teachers' observations gets handed off to the next group teacher.  By spring the children have had the opportunity to be in all three groups and the teachers have compiled all their observations to get a clear picture of your child’s growth and success in the room. 


In April, you will have the opportunity to meet for a conference with Tom to discuss all of these observations as well as your child's whole development (social, physical, cognitive, emotional, language, as well as kindergarten readiness). Don't they look grown-up and studious in the photos? It's lots of fun too!


Itsy, Bitsy, Spiders - November 1, 2017Top of Page

[Most of this written by Teacher Sandra]
Last Thursday we investigated spiders at our Science table.  The children love discovering about small creatures and they had many questions after Skylar had shared her skeleton spider during our letter A sharing day.  Skylar told us that spiders are arthropods, and that spiders have an exoskeleton.
At the science table children got to look through books and discuss what they already know about spiders, and what else they wanted to know.  Teacher Sandra also brought in a living spider specimen for the children to observe.  Children got to work on a spider coloring page that helped them to identify and label parts of a spider.  While working on their spider page children were busy strengthening their fine motor, hand and eye coordination, and their vocabulary skills with writing, cutting, gluing, and coloring (trying their best to stay in the lines), and also describing.
When asked what they already know:
Elliot offered that “They have spider webs.”
Vin added, “ So they can catch bugs.” 
Skylar said, “The spider eats the fly. They are really fast!”
Josie said, “ They crawl & some fly.”
Roger said, “Some spiders are good and some are bad.”
Wren offered, “I just know they bite.”
We all discussed why spiders build webs, and why they bite.  We talked about spiders being hunters and predators, and flies and other insects being their prey. We further discussed exoskeletons, and spiders segmented bodies and jointed legs. It was a great mini-study and timely for Halloween!

Oceans, Gardens, Ideas - October 6, 2017Top of Page

Greetings and welcome to the Woodside Preschool Pre-K Classroom home on the web! Here I'll do my best to keep you up to speed on the happenings in our classroom. We are off to a tremendous start and we've only just begun...
We invite children to explore, play, and create and encourage them to express themselves and collaborate. We take their ideas and questions seriously and use them to guide our curriculum and studies. As Joaquin was building in the pictures below, he declared proudly, "We are making ideas!" 
This group displayed an interest in fish and the ocean early on so we focused on that for a bit. At group-times, we invite them to share their knowledge and questions. In the next picture, the children are using their bodies to measure how big a whale is.
Teacher Kem brought in live creatures to observe.
Another highlight of this week was going over to the elementary school garden. Lena's mom won the visit at last year's school auction and was kind enough to share it with our class. We studied calendulas and various other seeds, artichokes, broomcorn, dog plants, and more. We also ate raisins and sunflowers. We love visiting all the resources on campus with Pre-K. More good times to come...