Animal Fun

We recently completed a science unit on animals and their needs. The students made animal logs books and completed pages on living and non-living things, animal needs, and habitats.

We also read the book Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type. After reading the book, the students chose a farm animal and wrote letters to Farmer Brown as that animal. We made paper plate animals to go with the letters. The students also worked on a reader’s theater production of the book and performed it for the Pre-K class.

We invited the first graders to play a game called Omnivore, Carnivore, Herbivore. Students were given a label identifying the type of animal they were. Then the running began. There was one human in the game. He was able to tag anyone. The omnivore could “eat” the carnivores and the herbivores. The carnivore could “eat” the herbivores and the herbivores spent the entire game trying to run away. It was quite exciting!

Each kindergartner chose an animal to research. The students completed a flip book report on the animals and presented the reports to the class. I think we all learned some interesting things about cheetahs, African elephants and appaloosa horses.

We had a pet showcase day where the students were allowed to bring pets from home. Mr. Darcy, my dog, was the only pet who showed up. We talked about how to take care of pets and worked together to take care of our class bird. We gave Kirby fresh food and water and cleaned his cage.

We spent some time learning about oviparous animals. I hid some eggs, which contained pictures of oviparous animals. Each Kindergartener found three eggs and was able to pick one of the three animals inside to research. They had to learn about the animals’ egg sand where they are laid, what the animal looks like after hatching, and what it looks like as an adult. In class, we painted pictures of the animals and put together a research poster.

We also had an interesting show and tell time. Students were asked to bring show and tell items that fit in an egg. During class they wrote clues about what was in their egg. After each clue was shared, the class was able to guess what the item might be.

We learned about the life cycle of several oviparous animals and acted out the life cycle of a butterfly. We had butterfly larvae in the classroom and observed their life cycle from larvae (caterpillars) to pupa (chrysalis) to adult. We had hoped the butterflies would lay eggs so we could see the complete life cycle, but that didn’t happen this year.

We ended our animal units with a trip to the Greenville Zoo. It was a chilly day, but we still had fun.

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Mt. Rushmore and its Presidents

We spent some time learning about Mt. Rushmore and the presidents who are on it. We began with George Washington – the first president of the United States. We read several books about his life and made tri-corner hats that included some of the things we learned. We also read the book, George Washington’s Teeth. He suffered with teeth problems for years. In fact, when he became president he only had one or two left. He wore false teeth made from a combination of human teeth, animal teeth and ivory. The kindergartners wrote number sentences guessing how many teeth Washington had when he was inaugurated.

Next, we learned about America’s third president – Thomas Jefferson. He was an avid reader and donated thousands of books to the Library of Congress. He was a brilliant man who designed his own house, invented the dumb waiter, swivel chair, and other things. He was the writer of the Declaration of Independence and as president, doubled the size of the United States through the Louisiana Purchase. The kindergartners used quill pens and ink to trace over some the famous words from the Declaration of Independence.

Jefferson spent five years in France. When he returned back home he introduced several types of food to America – ice cream, French fries, macaroni and cheese, and tomatoes. We had a Thomas Jefferson feast and enjoyed eating some of the foods he brought to America.

Abraham Lincoln was the next president we studied. We learned that he was born in a log cabin and helped his dad build a log cabin as well. He loved to read and walked several miles to borrow books. He was known for his honesty, which earned him the nickname Honest Abe. He wore a tall, black hat where he put important letters and papers.

We read the book, Mr. Lincoln’s Whiskers, which is the story of a young girl who wrote to President Lincoln suggesting that he grow whiskers. In the book are copies of her letter to him and his response letter to her.

The kindergartners built log cabins with Lincoln Logs. They also crafted Lincoln’s face and added paper torn whiskers. Their Lincoln also wore a tall, black hat complete with a letter inside.

Theodore Roosevelt was the final president we discussed. He organized a volunteer calvary called the Rough Riders during the Spanish-American War. He was also instrumental in making National Parks around the country. The kindergartners used colored pencils and watercolor paints to complete a picture of Theodore Roosevelt as a Rough Rider. To remind us of his role in setting aside land as National Parks, the kindergartners painted forest scenes using pine needles as paint brushes.

We learned that the teddy bear was named after Teddy Roosevelt. To celebrate that fun fact we had a teddy bear picnic. It was an absolutely gorgeous day to eat outside. The kindergartners brought teddy bears to school. We ate teddy bear shaped sandwiches, a forest of vegetables, ‘bear’ies and chocolate ice cream made to look like a bear’s face.

To go along with the Mt. Rushmore unit of study, the kindergartners researched one of the presidents and wrote about his life. They presented the reports to the class and then made paper dolls to go with their reports.

 

St. Patrick’s Day Fun

We weren’t in school on St. Patrick’s Day, but that was no reason to miss out on the fun. We celebrated on Monday instead. The kindergartners made leprechaun traps and set them up in the classroom in the hope of catching a leprechaun over the weekend.

We arrived at school Monday morning to quite a surprise – a mess! There were small, green bootprints all over the classroom as well as a lot of fuzzies, puzzle pieces, blocks and other things.

We read a book about a leprechaun who had once been a cobbler. The kindergartners ‘leprechauned’ themselves and did a writing activity based on the book. The kids also wore name tags showing their leprechaun names – Shamrock McCrackin, Stinky McPatty, and Stinky McStanky.

We even had St. Patrick’s day math activities.

After talking and reading about a leprechaun’s pot of gold, the kindergartners wrote about who is worth more than a pot of gold. That was a great way to end the day!

 

 

Dr. Seuss Day

March 2nd was Dr. Seuss’ birthday, so we celebrated all day in kindergarten. We read several of his books and had activities to go with them. We began the day by reading I Can Read With My Eyes Shut and made special reading glasses.

We read The Cat in the Hat and heard about his “fun” with Thing 1 and Thing 2. Thing 1 taught class for the day while the kindergartners dressed up as Things 2 – 5. We visited a couple of classes and asked the students if they would like a crazy cat to come to their house. We used the information to make a graph.

We took a quick Go Noodle break and danced to the Birthday Song.

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We read Dr. Seuss’ book, Yertle the Turtle and talked about how Yertle was a bucket dipper. The kindergartners finished a writing activity about Yertle the next day.

When the kindergartners came back from p.e., our room was wacky. There was even a shoe on the wall! We read Wacky Wednesday. Then the kindergartners had to find 20 wacky things in the classroom and write them on a list.

After lunch, The Cat in the Hat visited our class and read Fox in Socks. It is a super tongue-twisting rhyming book. The kindergartners found socks with rhyming popcorn words, wrote the words on a paper socks, and decorated them.

In the afternoon the kids laid on pillows to watch an old version of Horton Hears a Who. We ended the day with a special snack made from ice cream, pretzels, bananas, strawberries, and raisins.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DR. SEUSS!

 

Valentine’s Day Fun!

Happy Valentine’s Day! We had a great time celebrating this special day in kindergarten. We read some funny Valentine books and talked about story setting, characters, cause and effect, etc. We worked on a coupon Valentine book for parents and took several Valentine themed Go Noodle breaks.

We played a Valentine bump game to practice our math facts. We also grouped Valentine candy hearts by color and graphed them. Of course, the kids ate them when they math activity was over.

We ended the day with a party. The kindergartners made ice cream in a bag. This required some arm muscles! We also had a pink cookie, pink lemonade, strawberries and blueberries.

The kindergartners exchanged Valentine goodies and cards with their classmates. It was a great way to end the day!

 

American Symbols

We spent some time learning about some of America’s Symbols. We began by talking about the flag. We talked about its colors, nicknames of the flag, and what the stars and stripes represent. The kindergartners made a construction paper flag and wrote a description of it.

We learned about our national bird – the bald eagle. Benjamin Franklin wanted the wild turkey to be the national bird, but we’re glad the bald eagle was chosen.We learned that the bald eagle is only found in North American, has incredible eyesight and represents strength and freedom. The kindergartners made bald eagles with their foot and handprints. They also wrote some facts about these magnificent birds. We made a special bald eagle snack in class using a large marshmallow, icing, coconut, chocolate chips and a goldfish.

Finally, we discussed The White House. We learned that George Washington picked the place to build the White House, but he never lived in it. It took eight years to build this famous house. It has 132 rooms and 32 bathrooms.

100th Day of School

January 24th was our 100th day of school. We had such a fun day celebrating this milestone. The kindergartners came to school dressed as 100 years olds. What a sight to see!

The students arrived to a decorated room that included ten balloons hanging from the ceiling. Throughout the day we popped them to discover notes inside. Each note gave us an exercise to do ten times. By the time the day was over we had completed 100 exercises.

We wrote about our 100 year old birthday and finished the writing activity with pictures that made the kids look 100 years old. That brought a lot of laughs!

We read the book I’ll Teach My Dog 100 Words. Each kindergartner was given 25 popcorn words to trace and make into a chain. That gave us 100 words.

We read the book Hetty’s 100 Hats and made a 100th day hat. The students put 100 things on the hat including, dots, thumb prints, numbers, and letters.

To end the day we made a special snack. The students counted out 10 pieces of 10 different snacks foods which gave them 100 items to eat at home. We combined the leftover pieces and ate some of that in class. The kindergartners scooped out 1/4 cup of the 100 day snack then counted, tallied, and graphed what was their scoops.

It was a great way to end a fun day!