Saturday, January 31, 2015

Let it Snow! (Oo, 12, White)

The theme for the second week of January was "Let it Snow". We continued our Letter of the Week study with the letter O. This week we continued talking about colors with the color white, and we kept going on our number study with the number 12!

This week we read: It's Snowing! by Gail Gibbons
                                        Let it Snow! by Maryann Cocca-Leffler
                                        Snow Happy! by Patricia Hubbell
                                        The Snowy Day by Anna Milbourne
                                        Curious George in the Snow by HA & Margret Rey

Our question of the week was "What is your favorite thing to do in the snow?"

The color of the week: white was a lot of fun to explore.  We talked about things that are the color white and went on a hunt around our classroom to find things that are white.

We sang "We Love White" to the tune of Three Blind Mice.
"We love white, we love white.
That is right, that is right.
Clouds above and milk and glue,
Santa's beard, snow and ghosts say BOO!
Bunnies and paper are white too,
We love white"

As a class we brainstormed a GIANT list of things that are white. The kids then each picked what they wanted to draw, and we made a class book.

For the number of the week:12 we started off by counting to and backward from twelve. They love doing this every day and when we get to the end of counting backward, they all scream blast off!! ;) The kids also practiced writing the number and word for twelve. 

When I started in my room I found some papers in my room I found a random number page like this from, so I made my own for the number 12. The children have to practice writing the number and then color in that number of squares. It's a great way to introduce graphing and helps them to work on their one-to-one correspondence.

For our theme "Let it Snow", we watched Frozen and ate popcorn for a super fun morning! That movie was made for this theme, right?

The kids made snowmen! I found this idea here, and just fell in love with it. I precut white and black squares and orange triangles, and set the kids free. I love how they each made their own special snowman. They really enjoyed this project too.

We freeze danced! We used instruments to help the kids make sure that they were freezing and they had so much fun doing this.

In the sensory table we made snow using 1 cup baking soda and 1/3 cup conditioner.

The letter of the week: O activities that we worked on this week were outstanding! I created envelope games for each letter of the alphabet. I adapted them from activities from Mailbox Letter of the Week projects, both book one and two. The children had to place the "O" items on the ox. All the other letters? They had to find somewhere else!

From a Mailbox Letter of the Week book, the kids made a booklet about "Where is Octopus". I like doing these kinds of books because they can go back and look at the pictures to help tell the story, and they are also able to do the project mostly on their own. When they are finished coloring the pages, they come and get their scissors. When they are finished cutting, they bring their pages to me, put away their scissors and clean up their area of paper scraps. I love it!

The book Sounds Like fun, Phonemic Awareness has great phonics activities for the alphabet. For the letter O, the children have to cut out and glue the words that "Begins like Otter". Together we talked about the beginning sounds of the words, and then they work on their fine motor cutting skills.

In our school gym we made an obstacle course! We did four rounds and added to the "course" each time. The kids had a lot of fun with all of the climbing, sliding, crawling and jumping!

We practice and work on our handwriting for each letter as well. The Original Summer Bridge Activities, for PreK-K has great handwriting practice sheets. The kids trace and write the letters and then have a little phonics practice at the bottom.

The kids decorated a snowman picture, and then we stamped over it with an orange, in orange! What's more wintery than an orange snowman?

From the book Alphabet, Colors, Numbers and Shapes, the kids practice letter recognition AND direction following. Some weeks certain letters have to be colored specifically and sometimes it's up to them. I love these!

Each child has a journal that they write in every week. When we focus on a letter, they write for that letter. On shorter weeks and during our review later in the year, they write to the theme. This is such a great way to get children excited about writing and reading. I start the children out by tracing, and once they are comfortable and controlling the crayon well, they move onto copying.

As we work through the alphabet, the children make projects to go on  our "alphabet wall". It's a very fun way for the class to see the alphabet in a new way. This week we colored small owls. These went up with our nests from last week!

The children turned a capital letter O into a octopus. I got the idea from the book Alphabet and Counting from Twin Sister Productions. They give tips for how to make it a 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.

I found these short videos about "o" animals that we watched through the week. There was one about octopi, otters, ostriches and owls.

I made a cube of cardboard and glued pictures of "O" things one each side. The children say "Octopus, Octopus, what do I see.... I see a ____ looking at me!" They roll the cube and fill in the blank. This idea came from a Mailbox activity book for the letter A, and let me tell you, it was a hit!! They loved it!

During the week we made a list of words that begin with the letter O. Here is what we thought of!

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