This is it- the very last Friday Housekeeping for this school year. Some of you are relieved, I know, and some are sad, because it means Team Awesome is ready to move on to grade one and they aren't very little any more. Remember how small and vulnerable they seemed in September and how hard it was to let them go at the door? Now they hardly look back when they say their goodbyes in the morning. The new kindergarteners in the fall always seem so young and dependent in comparison with the ones that leave me for the summer at the end of June and I know this year won't be any different.
Our trip to Isobel Lake is on Tuesday, June 27! So here's the plan- although it is wobbly as out there in the forest we are not restricted to time constraints so things are fairly relaxed other than our departure time at the end of the day.
We will be leaving the school as soon as possible in the morning (8:45ish). Be sure to pack lots of lunch/snacks (they turn into voracious eaters on field trips), a water bottle, a sweater and a hat. The children will be expected to carry their own packs all day so make sure they are manageable. The weather is supposed to be warm but of course is unpredictable, so please dress your child appropriately. Apply sunscreen and bug repellent before leaving the house as the children have a tendency to share and over-apply, getting it into eyes/hair etc. The bus will drop us off at the top of the hill and we will either use the bathrooms (outhouses) at the top or the bottom of the hill... or both. Children will be divided up among the adults after we get off the bus and the groups will be encouraged to explore but to stay together. We will eat our snacks after a short walk and take our garbage with us. We will make our way around the lake, stopping and exploring and staying out of the water. It is not inconceivable that someone will 'accidently' fall/ slip into the water (it has happened before) so I will pack a change of clothes just in case. Partway around the lake we will stop to see what we can see in the lake from the shore and the pond kits will be brought out to use and later we will carefully go out onto the docks. Slightly further on we will stop in a large grassy area with covered picnic tables to eat our lunches and then slowly make our way back to the bus so we can leave by 2:00. Sometime during the day we will get a picture of all the Ks together. Sounds like a great day! Hope you can join us.
PS The document below states 'no preschoolers' but I'm OK with it so long as you keep a close eye on them as we will be near water. I am not responsible for them.
The Primary Fun Day events are scheduled for Friday, June 23, with an alternate date of Monday, June 26 if the weather doesn't look good. We will be participating in fun sporting events such as races and relays in multi-age groups K-3 outside for the course of the morning. Hats, sunscreen and a water bottle are necessary as we are hoping it will be hot and sunny. In the afternoon K-3 students will have some water fun out on the field. Please send a towel and hat and have your child's suit on under their clothes or in their bag to change into after lunch. A plastic bag to put wet things in might be handy. If your child would like to bring a water gun please have it clearly marked with their name and I will be collecting them in class to hold until the afternoon. There will be buckets of water and a pool to fill water guns in and a shady area to spread out our towels that will be off-limits for water gun usage. The whole day was a huge success and so much fun last year! Come have a blast with the primary students on Friday!
I love late spring in Kindergarten. You can almost see Team Awesome's little light bulbs come on as they begin to make connections to and with all the things we have been learning since the fall. And reading and writing are no exception. They begin to use their letter/ sound knowledge to sound out and then blend simple consonant/vowel/consonant words. They can find words we have learned and they want to use on the word wall. They are independently using the reading strategies we have been learning and using as a group, such as looking at the pictures to help with an unknown word and then thinking about whether or not it makes sense or making connections while reading to other things they have learned. They are self-correcting their reading and spelling. They are taking risks and starting to learn to figure out and use language in ways they haven't been expressly taught based on their previous knowledge of how language works. As a teacher, it is very seldom that you actually get to see the knowledge your students have gained over the course of the ten months you have them in your classroom and you have to take it on faith that you have done your job (and they have done theirs). It is one of the perks of teaching Kindergarten that we get to actually see the growth of our students over the course of the year and revel in the learning they have done while in our care.
Last year Mrs. Farber and I had this brilliant (we thought) idea to take our classes to Centennial Park in Westsyde by city bus for the day. We could cover some of our socials curriculum (transportation, bus driver, community) and give the children an experience many of them had not had previously. It was a great idea in theory. We filled out the paper work to obtain our free bus passes and dutifully lined our little Ks up at the bus stop on 8th St to eagerly await the bus. And wait. And wait. And once the bus did arrive we learned that the bus driver had no knowledge of us and the bus was already partly full, making it difficult to accommodate 40 small children and 2 anxious teachers. We found it necessary to triple up in the seats and our children were seated all over, making it hard to keep an eye on them. But they were thrilled! The return trip was much the same, with the added stressor of having to cross 8th St at the lights with tired, dragging children who were not up to walking at the quick march it takes to get across the road before the light changes. Thankfully drivers were patient.
This year calmer heads have prevailed and on Wednesday, June 21, we will be catching the school bus in front of the school at about 10:00 for our trip to Centennial Park in Westsyde. We will look at the animals across the street (unfortunately through the fence), maybe feed them some goodies we can buy from a vending machine (the goats are very greedy!), have our lunch under the trees and splash in the water park for the rest of the afternoon before our return at the end of the day. If you would like your child to go through the park sprinklers please have their suit on under their clothes or in their pack and send a towel (last year a parent forgot and the little guy went in his undies). Hats and sunscreen and a plastic bag to put wet things into are a good idea. We will catch the return bus at about 2:00. Please join us at the park.
Mrs. Bowden &