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When setting out expectations for a project with the children, Mrs. Farber and I seldom show them an example as they all want to make exactly what was shared with them and not create something of their own. With the catapult project we showed them a video of a simple working catapult as many of them were unfamiliar with the term and, predictably, most of them chose to try and make the exact same catapult rather than playing and exploring with the materials and coming up with their own ideas. So we have revisited the catapult idea yet again, this time providing an expanded selection of materials to choose from and reminding them to revise their original ideas and improve upon them as needed. Some of them had a difficult time expanding their thinking beyond their first try and others rose to the occasion and eagerly modified their catapults to make them bigger and better. We will continue to work on encouraging the children to change and rethink and tweek their ideas to improve on them as the year goes on.
When I looked for a picture of the Valentine cards I remember giving when I was in elementary school I had to use the search term "vintage". Boy am I dating myself! Every card was printed on sturdy thin cardboard and no two were the same. They all had to be cut out by hand and one had to be very selective who received which card lest the message conveyed something unintentional. I remember spending hours cutting, choosing the perfect beneficiary, and laboriously printing names the night before Valentine's Day. No fancy stickers, toys, lollipops or candies involved, just homemade chocolate cupcakes with sprinkles to share with the class.
For most of Team Awesome this will be their first experience with Valentine's Day and cards and the children will have a vague idea what its all about. We will be doing some activities like crafts with hearts throughout the week but of course will go all-out on Wednesday. Goodies to share with the class are most welcome and fruits and veggies always go over well with the children. Please make sure the 'From' part on Valentine cards are filled in before coming to class as we will not have time on Wednessday to do that. Please leave off the 'To' as it makes the cards easier to hand out. Have your child bring them in a bag and then put the whole bag in the Home Box or on my desk so they don't get lost/ crunched- we will hand them out after lunch. I will try (for purely selfish reasons) to dissuade the children from eating the candies that are attached to many cards and encourage them to eat them at home. Happy Valentine's Day!
Just a heads up- last week one of our friends stayed home with impetigo and yesterday a Team Awesome member's sibling was home with the same thing. Please keep an eye on your child for symptoms as it is contagious.
Impetigo ( "im-puh-TY-go") is a bacterial skin infection. It causes red sores that can break open, ooze fluid, and develop a yellow-brown crust. These sores can occur anywhere on the body. It is one of the most common skin infections in children. It can occur in adults but is seen far more often in children. Impetigo is contagious and can be spread to others through close contact or by sharing towels, sheets, clothing, toys, or other items. Scratching can also spread the sores to other parts of the body.
Impetigo is caused by one of two kinds of bacteria- strep (streptococcus) or staph (staphylococcus). Often these bacteria enter the body when the skin has already been irritated or injured because of other skin problems such as eczema, insect bites, burns, or cuts. Children may get impetigo after they have had a cold or allergies that have made the skin under the nose raw. But impetigo can also develop in completely healthy skin.
Am I the only one that finds Groundhog Day bizarre? According to folklore, if it is cloudy when a groundhog emerges from its burrow on this day, then spring will come early; if it is sunny, the groundhog will supposedly see its shadow and retreat back into its burrow, and the winter weather will continue for six more weeks. Really?! Not only that but a Canadian study for 13 cities in the past 30 to 40 years found that the weather patterns predicted on Groundhog Day were only 37% accurate over that time period—a value not significant compared to the 33% that could occur by chance. When I asked Team Awesome if a groundhog could really predict the coming (or not) of spring they all agreed that it could not- spring would come when it was ready. But it was fun learning about groundhogs and their 5 minutes in the spotlight every year on February 2.
Mrs. Bowden &