Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Kevin Henkes, The Heart of the Beast and more

What a busy week we continue to have!  On Tuesday, we joined the rest of the Lower School in the theater for a live webcast by Kevin Henkes.  He is the author/illustrator of wonderful books such as Chrysanthemum and Wemberly Worried, both of which we read the first week of school.  To view Kevin Henkes' website and a list of his works, click here.

It was inspiring to hear a writer talk about his process (since we talk a lot of process in our Writers' Workshop) and his inspiration--things from his childhood, children he knew on his block, even a child he saw in the airport once inspired him to write Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse.  Henkes edits his writing by first completing his stories longhand, then revising on a typewriter (wow), then revising again on a computer.  He showed us photographs from his childhood in Wisconsin, including one of him drawing pictures at age 4.

Friday is Coronation Day for Homecoming weekend.  Students are encouraged to wear blue and gold on Friday (some of you may have ordered t-shirts).  We will be part of a "Heart of the Beast" parade first thing in the morning at 8:45.  Each child has painted and created a creature mask to wear in the parade through the Middle School.  After recess, we will have the opportunity to meet "the court--" the king and queen of Homecoming as they come through the lower school.

If you are curious about "Heart of the Beast," click here for some interesting background information on the puppet and performance group.

We concluded our gingerbread study with pop-up settings of our favorite gingerbread stories, with characters included; they are on display outside the classroom.  We began our interest in nursery rhymes with the song "Humpty Dumpty" and a Little Jack Horner math game.  We will be listening and singing the Jack Hartmann nursery rhyme CD "Rhymin' to the Beat--"  the songs are catchy and fun and help us rhyme!  If you are interested in hearing some of the tunes, visit the link here and click on the audio preview (I am not encouraging you to buy it; it's just nice to hear and share these songs with your kindergartner at home, especially if you are like me and trouble holding a tune!).

We continue to explore math patterns and shapes.  Our investigation into graphing and sorting began today with our quick math graph "Do you like rainy days?"  I discovered that seven of our students do prefer rainy days!  We discovered that as we graph, we learn new information and organize our thinking.

Look for pictures to come of our parade and a great class picture on Coronation Day!


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