Thanksgiving Christmas

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Hey ya’ll! What in the world has happened?? I blinked and it is Christmas break! The last month has been fast and furious in kindergarten. Here is a peek at some of the fun things we have learned:

First, I’m going to take you back. Way back. To Thanksgiving. Forgive me for not making a blog post sooner about our Thanksgiving unit. We had so much fun learning about the first Thanksgiving. We learned songs, made a Thanksgiving story bracelet, and did a lot of fun crafts along the way. However, our big accomplishment was putting together our Thanksgiving Play. The kiddos were responsible for learning their parts, making their costumes, creating the set, and acting out the play. It was an amazing learning experience! As a teacher, it was awesome to watch them stretch their brains, think outside the box, work together as a team and be successful. They learned about so much more than Thanksgiving with this project!​❤️

 
We also discussed what it was like for the pilgrims on that Mayflower trip. How they must have felt and what kinds of things they probably brought with them. We made our own suitcases and brainstormed what we would pack if we were headed out on a trip on the Mayflower.


Our Thanksgiving party was so much fun! We had a feast! The kids loved it! Thank you to everyone who sent items and/or helped plan:)


After Thanksgiving break, we jumped right into learning about the first Christmas. We read several stories about the first Christmas, practiced our sequencing skills by ordering the events surrounding the birth of Baby Jesus, and we had a birthday celebration for baby Jesus in our classroom where we each got to draw a present for Jesus and decorate a cupcake.



Sometimes you have to take a break from the regular and do something just because it interests the kids. Gunner brought his awesome tornado machine and gave us all an awesome demonstration of how it works! 


We spent the next week learning about Christmas traditions around the world. We started by discussing what a tradition is, brainstorming traditions, and then writing about some of our own Christmas traditions.

 

Then we were off to travel the world! First stop, Germany! First, we gathered around the world map and found where Germany is located. We talked about countries and continents. We also compared the German flag to our own. Then we explored Christmas traditions in Germany. We learned that the Christmas tree tradition comes from Germany along with Gingerbread houses and Gingerbread men. We practiced ordering by size by making a christmas tree craft, sequencing by discussing steps to building a gingerbread house, and we put up our classroom tree. It was a fun day!


The next day, we traveled to Sweden where we learned about the Yule Log. In Sweden, children make Yule Log wishes for Christmas. The students got to create a Yule log and make a wish.


I was not at school this day, so the kids got to read “Mrs. Nelson is Missing” and write about where they thought I was. It was so fun to see their responses. Luckily, I was not sick or eaten by a Shark!


The next day, we traveled to Mexico! What a fun day this was! We read “The Legend of the Poinsettia”, learned about Los Posadas, made poinsettias, and hit a piñata. We also learned to sing “Feliz Navidad”.

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On the last day, we traveled to France where we learned all about St. Lucia. The kids got to make fun St. Lucia crowns and learn all about how France celebrates Christmas.


This past week has been all about FUN, with some learning thrown into the mix! On Monday, we learned about Santa and did these awesome directed drawings:


On Tuesday, we had an Elf Day! We made these fun elf crafts and even got to see ourselves dancing as elves on these fun videos:

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Wednesday was Rudolph Day! We made reindeer food with Mrs. Leeanne, made a Rudolph craft, sang “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” and read the story.


Thursday was party day! Our christmas party was so much fun! Thank you to all the parents who sent things and/or helped plan the party.


Thematic units such as Christmas around the World and the Thanksgiving Play, are not only fun for the kids, but they amazing learning opportunities. Weaving learning standards into meaningful experiences for kids makes the learning stick and makes them not only excited to learn, but also helps them become more confident learners who are not afraid to ask questions, get creative, take risks, and reach their full potential. It is an amazing thing to watch!

Here is what has been going on in some other areas:

In ELA, we have finished up the alphabet! The rest of the year will look a tad different. We will be going back through the alphabet, with more focus on blending and using letters to make words. There are students in this class on many different developmental levels, to the second semester will look very different from student to student. Some students will be ready to move on to other skills while others will still need some practice on skills that have been introduced already. We will be doing a lot of small group work for reading and writing. I will be scheduling conferences with each parent before spring break to discuss your child’s progress. Continue reading with your child every night. Not only is it a great bonding experience, but it is great practice for them.  I am already blown away by how much these students have grown, but I promise you, the best is yet to come! Kindergarten kiddos tend to blossom after Christmas.. maybe it’s the cookies?

In math, we have been practicing sorting and differentiating between larger and smaller quantities. Coming up we will be learning about measurement, time money, shapes, graphing, addition, and subtraction. It is going to be a blast!

 

In Science, we will be learning about Winter and doing some awesome winter science experiments! I know these kids will be SO excited to get our experiment table back up and running. 😉

In Social Studies, we will learn about goal setting (New Year’s Resolutions) and Martin Luther King when we come back.

We will not have school on January 16 to celebrate MLK Day.

We will have a lockdown drill on January 19. We will discuss this in class before hand, but students sometimes have questions at home after these types of drills.

Heads up:

*We will be learning about Christ’s love in February along with Valentines Day. We will be having a Friday Field trip on Feb. 10th to a local nursing home where we will show them Christ’s love by sharing goodies and crafts made in class with them. Details will be coming home soon.

*We will be having a Kindergarten Info night on February 7th. Ya’ll are the first to find out (perks of knowing the teacher;) ). We will only be having one info night this year. Some parents have asked about sending their child again next year. I have had several students who are younger come twice and it has been awesome! Lessons and teaching changes year to year depending on the interests and developmental needs of my students. Anyway, if this is something you are interested in, chat with me before Feb. 7th. There will only be 16 spots open for the class in the fall.

I really can not believe that our year is half way over! This is such an awesome class! We are going to rock the socks off of this next semester! As always, please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have questions, concerns, or just want to chat. I’m blessed by each of your families !   

Ya’ll have a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!