Saturday, December 20, 2014

New Writers' Library!

Check out our new iBook library--with kindergarten authors!

Find the new tab at the top of the screen labeled "Our iBook Library" and enjoy some kindergarten informational books!

Merry Christmas and Las Posadas!

We celebrated Christmas and Las Posadas this week.  We read Christmas is... by Gail Gibbons and Uno, Dos, Tres Las Posada by Virginia Kroll this week.  Then it was time for our party!

Making bead wreaths and candy canes

Pinning the nose on Santa... no peeking!

Enjoying Christmas tree brownies...

with lots of green frosting!

We captured a few of our wonderful helpers with their kindergartners too!

Then it was time for our Las Posadas pinata!  
Our owl pinata before breaking...

Kindergarteners with their pinata candy afterwards!

For some great resources on Las Posadas, click here.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

A Reading of Peef

One of our special privileges each holiday season is that we get to enjoy a reading of Peef: A Christmas Bear, by the author himself, Mr. Hegg!  Mr. Hegg is a drama teacher at Breck and comes to visit us every winter with Mrs. Hegg to share Peef with us.

Click on the book cover above for a YouTube reading of the story of Peef (sadly, not a reading by Mr. Hegg!).

Happy Hanukkah

We had a wonderful time this afternoon at our joint Hanukkah party with our third grade buddies.

We listened to the story of Hanukkah, the festival of lights.

After trying traditional potato latkes with applesauce and sour cream, the children played about the dreidel game.  

For a fun virtual dreidel game, click here!

Thank you to all our parent volunteers and to Mrs. Schafer's class for hosting us!
Friday, December 12, 2014

Happy St. Lucia Day

We celebrated St. Lucia Day today! St. Lucia is typically celebrated on December 13th in Sweden to honor St. Lucia, who brought food to the needy around 300 A.D.  For more information on St. Lucia, check here on pbskids or here.

For St. Lucia day, the oldest daughter wears a crown of ligonberry leaves with candles and a white robe.  She rises early in the morning to serve traditional St. Lucia buns to the family.  The boys don "Star Boy" hats to help St. Lucia.

The lussekatt, traditional St. Lucia saffron buns
So we had to make fabulous crowns and Star Boy hats to celebrate!
Our St. Lucias
Our Star Boys

Click on the crown above for directions from the Chicago Children's Museum on making St. Lucia crowns.

A former Breck teacher visited us as St. Lucia and offered the children pepperkakor, another special St. Lucia treat.  Tradition says that you make a wish, then press one finger into the middle of the pepperkakor.  If it breaks into three pieces, your wish shall come true!

After trying pepparkakor, it was time to eat out yummy St. Lucia buns!

We also watched a choir sing a traditional St. Lucia song.  Click on the video below!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

December Biobuddies

We experienced our five senses with our middle school buddies today!  We rotated through a station on each sense...

Our sense of touch--a soft mini-Santa suit
What else is in the feeling box?
What is in the hidden pictures?

What's in the box?  Using our sense of hearing 
Now onto using our sense of taste and trying something sour... oh boy!
We got some surprised faces when the students tried something bitter (unsweetened chocolate), salty (salt), sweet (Skittles), and sour (Sour Patch Kids).  The big favorite were the Skittles, by a vote of 9-5!
We also watched a short video to help us think about animals and their "Super Senses."  Each child imagined what it would be like to have a super sense and drew a picture in their biobuddy booklet with their buddy's help.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Happy St. Nicholas Day

A big part of our curriculum this December is studying different holidays.  To kick off the season we learned about St. Nicholas Day.  St. Nicholas is celebrated in Europe, where he leaves special treats in your shoes on the night of December 5th.   Visit the St. Nicholas Center here for lots of information on St. Nicholas.  Click here for the KidzWorld site on St. Nicholas Day--there are other short videos there about other holidays in December.

We made paper shoes today, just in case St. Nicholas finds his way to our school tonight!

We'll see what's in our shoes on Monday morning!

First Skate of the Season

Fun at Anderson Ice Arena started today!  Thank you to all our parents for helping!

Some were going so fast it was hard to get a picture!

Zooming around! 

December Service

It is BIG month for service in our community, a time to give!

Our first service project was today's card-making.  We started out today making cards to go with the school's care packages for our troops overseas.  Our students really got into the spirit, and on the own came up with thoughtful messages.

"We haven't forgotten about you."
"We haven't forgotten about you."

"Happy Holidays!"
"Happy Holidays and Thank You!"

Our cards will go out with the packages Monday.

Our second service project is collecting small items to go with Meals on Wheels.  Drivers for Meals on Wheels would like to provide small gifts to deliver during the holidays.  As many of you know, sometimes a Meals on Wheels driver is the only visitor an elderly or disabled person might get during the week, and a small thing can make a big difference in that week!  

Gifts that would be appreciated include:
warm, study socks
towel sets
heating pads
lap robes
tea or coffee

Gift donations may be delivered to our classroom or the service shelf in the middle school by December 17th.  Thank you!