Sunday, September 22, 2013

All About Me! (A, Squares)

The second week of school we started to really get used to the routine of the classroom and really started to get to know each other. The school's weekly theme was "All About Me" and we started with a letter and shape focus this week. We started with  the letter A and squares.

This week we read: Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr, John Archambault
                                L, M, N, O, Peas by Keith Baker
                                Curious George Feeds the Animals by Margret and H.A. Rey
                                Always by Allison McGhee
                                A Book of Friends by Dave Ross

Our question of the week was "What kind of animal would you be?" but I LOST THE PICTURE! I'm so bummed, but i will try to ask the question again.. The answers were great.

I have a few books that I have some great letter activities. Every week we have a handwriting day (Tuesday) and I use the pages from The Original Summer Bridge Activities PK-K. ISBN 978-1-60418-817-2. At the top of the page there is room for the students to practice writing the capital and lowercase letters, and then on the bottom of the page there are pictures, that they have to figure out which words have the same beginning sound.

For letters, I also like the alphabet pages from Alphabet, Colors, Numbers and Shapes. ISBN 0-88724-419-x. They challenge the kids to recognize the letters in different pictures and they love them.

I also love to have the kids turn letters into different animals. I got the idea from the book Alphabet and Counting from Twin Sister Productions. ISBN 157583819-2. They give tips for how to make it glue and paste projects, but I like to give them crayons and the challenge to add the parts of the animal to the letter. It opens up room for more conversation about the shape of the letter AND the features of the animal.

Our big project this week was an All About Me book. These pages were given to me by another teacher, but I found them again here. We didn't do all the pages, but we did one or two a day. The books I kept and will be giving to the parents on Back-to-School night. It's a fun book for the parents to look at while exploring the classroom.
Here is one page where the kids made their handprints.
The kids made a page about their family, their pets, their eye color, favorite color, favorite food, their age, hand prints and a self portrait.

They practiced tracing squares with this cool worksheet I found here.

We also played a game this week where they had to pick a picture out of a basket and name the "A" think that they were looking at.

The school bought my class student writing journals and I LOVE these! Every week for the alphabet, the kids pick about what they want to write about for that letter. This week I introduced them to their journals, and i think they love them just as much as I do.

We tasted Red Delicious and Granny Smith Apples and talked about the differences between them. We also made apple prints!
I found these great short videos on YouTube about the journey of apples from tree to store to home that the kids loved. We watched each one twice by request. They especially thought it was hilarious when Jim says "From Blossom to Awesome."
Video One
Video Two
Video Three
There is a wall in the classroom that I made the "Alphabet Wall". Each week we do a project to go up on the wall. Last year the kids loved to guess the possible things we could be making.  This week we made apples. I cut the inside circle of a paper plate, the stem and leaf and a rectangle of red paper. The kids got to rip up the red paper to glue onto the circle. The kids really enjoyed the glue and the ripping, and the apples came out great and unique!
 And here is what our alphabet wall looks like so far!

This was our first week! I will leave you with the list of words that begin with "A" that the kids came up with!

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