Saturday, June 23, 2012

Fun things to do over the summer!

With a summer off, I'm trying to explore more of the Capital District area! It's difficult for me coming from New York City, because I'm used to being inundated by various events, activities and sights. This weekend, my husband and I ventured into Troy, NY for their farmers market and flea market! I was really surprised at how much fun it was...it reminded me a lot of being in Brooklyn.

While researching online for activities, I found a lot of kid-friendly activities to do too, so I updated the fun things to do page! I'll try to update that throughout the summer.
I took this photo of the classroom Friday--
Such a change from this. It felt really bittersweet putting things away and cleaning. It's just a room and furniture but so many wonderful memories were made in this room. It's been such a wonderful journey...I really can't wait to see what comes next!
Monday, I'll be heading off to New York City to spend time with friends and family! :) Hope everyone else is enjoying their summer break so far!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

End of the year

Mr. Flynn announced the results of the school science illustration competition over the loudspeaker today! A.K received an honorable mention and J.A was one of the 6 winners chosen from the school! Our class is thrilled to have our very own classmates receive recognition! :) D.K, J.A and G.A also have their illustrations displayed in the front lobby of the school!!

I think it may have finally hit me that this year is over. I tried to talk to as many families as I could over the last couple of days, but in case I didn't get to say it-I want to give a BIG thank you to all the families! Our classroom couldn't have done it withour your support, encouragement, positive energy and presence. We absolutely loved having families take such an active role in our classroom. All the kids knew everyone's family members- names and faces! This class and these group of children are going to hold such a special place in my heart and memory. They're my first prek class but it goes beyond that-their personalities and interests and curiosities have left an indelible impact on me. The class dynamic has been full of spark and as a teacher, I thrived on it! I'm going to miss everyone so much and I wish nothing but the best for everyone! I know everyone is on their way to doing amazing things! If anyone ever needs anything, you can always email me, even if it's just to say hi!

Also, thank you for reading this blog and giving me such positive feedback about it. This has been a great space for not only communicating with families, but also for me to reflect on the day and the classroom. I'm going to continue blogging through the summer, though not as frequently and probably with just personal updates. I can't say with 100% certainty where I'm going to be next year, but I'll update the blog as soon as I know! :)

Tomorrow is our last day :( It'll be another half day dismissal at 11:15am and we will be giving out report cards. Any report cards not handed out will be given to the main office. Have a super duper fantastic summer! Stay cool, be kind and have lots and lots of fun!!

Also, if your child is continuing at TOAST, check out these websites from two of the kindergarten teachers---
Mrs. Bruce--http://mrsbrucesbunch.weebly.com/
Mrs. Luciani--http://mrslucianiskindergarten.weebly.com/

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Our Trip to Five Rivers

We had a wonderful morning at Five Rivers! The weather turned out much better than expected-it was cool and shady, perfect for our hike around Five Rivers! We broke up into small groups to follow a tour guide. Ms. Kacey and I split up the class and each of us went with a group. I went with Ms. Barb, who was very calming and modeled great respect for nature and wildlife. We used our five senses as the tools for exploring nature!
Our group with Ms. Barb
We used our sense of touch to feel different plants, flowers and seeds
The grass had seeds on them
D.K said, "My mommy grows those!"
We closed our eyes and smelled the wild mint seeds
Looking for pine cones!
Looking up the tall tree!
Many students were fascinated with the map of the area. O.B asked, "Can we go here?" (pointing to the lake)
It's hard to see--but the brown spot in the photo on the path is a bunny! We were treated with a quick glimpse!
What nibbles on the leaves?
D.K found this snail and everyone got to look at it
We used magnifiers to look closely at small things
G.P looks for some bugs
O.B looks into the wood chips
We noticed this milky substance on the branches-it was spit and inside was a spit bug!
What could have dug this hole?
We went on the dock to notice the geese--but many of the children were more fascinated with the goose poo that laid around the dock area
Ms. Barb used a net to catch small bugs and laid them out on a blanket for the children to explore
We saw an inch worm, a baby grasshopper, a damsel fly, and many other assorted tiny bugs
We came upon an anthill!
We passed by a beehive! We didn't go near it but we did get to taste
We didn't even cover half of the area! Five Rivers is a wonderful place for all ages and it's really close to Albany. The bus ride was about 15-20 minutes. I highly recommend it for families to go and take a hike and explore nature! There were many trails-I'm thinking of taking my dog some day!

Special thanks to O.B's dad, A.K's mom and K.M's sister for chaperoning! :D

We have three more days of school left-tomorrow is our last full day!!! Reminder, Thursday and Friday are half days (dismissal at 11:15am) and there will be no aftercare from the Y both days. Report cards will be given out Friday!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Froggy!!

It's our last week of school! I can't believe it! This week is going to be dedicated to playing and having lots of fun! When we came back from the weekend, something happened to one of our froglets--his tail has grown shorter and it no longer needs to stay in the water. It even came up and sat on the rock!
Tomorrow is our trip to Five Rivers. They have advised all children to wear long sleeves, long pants and closed-toe shoes. There is a high number of ticks this year due to the mild winter, so please make sure to check your child thoroughly when they return home! We hope to have lots of fun exploring the great outdoors! :)
Reminder-Thursday and Friday are half days! Dismissal will start at 11:15am, there will also be no aftercare from the Y that day.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Thanks for coming!

Thank you to all the family members that came to our PreK stepping up celebration! I hope everyone had lots of fun! I could tell the kids were really enjoying themselves! :D Every child received a DVD that I've been working on which contains a slideshow of the class from January on, a video of their oral storytelling and a message for their families! There was also the poster each child decorated with their photo from September and a more recent photo. Ms. Kacey and I also gave each child a copy of the book I knew you could!, which is an inspirational story that hopes lasts them a lifetime! The nap blankets and extra clothing were also sent home. We won't be doing nap anymore so no need to bring them back! :) Thank you again for coming! It meant so much to me and Kacey and especially the kids to have all that support. This year has been wondrous, to say the least, and we couldn't have done without all of you and the support you have given our classroom community. Have a wonderful weekend and see you Monday!!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

"Wow I grew up!"

That's what one of the students said when we working on our individual posters. Each poster had a photograph I took of the child on their first day of school and a photo taken in the spring. We looked at everyone's posters and it was amazing to see the changes that occurred! The children, then, decorated their posters with their names and other drawings. Every family will get to see these posters and take them home this Friday following our stepping up picnic!
T.S
K.M
K.W
G.P
G.A
T.D
D.K
X.I
They all came out beautifully! I can't wait for everyone's families to see them!

I've been worried that our tadpoles/froglets wouldn't turn into frogs by the time the school year ended, but today one of the tadpoles grew front legs! It was amazing! We'll be watching now to see if the tails will be getting smaller.
The tadpole with both hind and front legs (sorry for the blurry photo-they move around so quickly!)
Looking closely we can see the webbed feet on the hind legs
We passed around the tadpole for closer inspection.

Reminder, this Friday is our stepping up (graduation) picnic from 10:30-11:45. After the celebration, we will be returning back to the classroom to receive each student's items and gifts. The dioramas will also be on display! Not sure if I'll be blogging tomorrow, I'm heading to Ballston Spa for a dog event, but I hope to see everyone on Friday! Also, if you have any lending library books or classroom books, please try to return them by the end of this week. 
Tomorrow is also Flag Day, so dress in red, white and blue to celebrate!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Field Day 2012

Sorry for any confusion the important dates notice may have caused. I listed it as June 18th, but field day was today! Thank you to all the parents that came with us to the park, stopped by and played with the kids! It was a beautiful day to be outside! :) The class had lots of fun and were quite tired by the time we got back to school. I also want to apologize beforehand-this week is quite hectic! I'm preparing report cards as well as a special gift for families for the children's stepping up so my evenings will be busy. :( I'm so excited for this Friday, to celebrate all the children's learning with a fun picnic! I can't wait to talk to everyone's families about the spectacular accomplishments of the class.
G.S blowing bubbles
Playing at the swings
Playground area
More bubble play
T.S on the swings
O.B climbing up the steps
J.C climbing
T and O.B pretending to order at a restaurant
D.K just off the slide
X.I sliding
With all the equipment in the park, it amazed me how the kids still wanted to dig in the dirt and look for bugs!
D.K and T.S
O.S
A.K jumping