Saturday, August 21, 2010

Shelfari - A Site for Books and Readers

Dear families and teachers ~

I am so excited to add this link to my blog today!  This virtual bookshelf will grow over time.  I have added several books to our shelves today.  You can use this as a resource to:

  1. Talk to your kids about books we are reading in class.
  2. Order these books from the library.
  3. Purchase these books at stores or online.
  4. Discover new books and make recommendations to me for our class.
  5. Check out my wishlist and purchase books for our class.
  6. Teachers can share comments and teaching strategies about books.  You can my group on Shelfari!
I hope you enjoy this site as much as I do!  Check it out by looking at the bookshelf on the right column!  As you scroll over a book it will give you a personal review and more information!  I love this dynamic virtual way of sharing! 

Bee Happy,

Mrs. D

Friday, August 20, 2010

Word Work

Good evening Honey Bees, families, and teachers,

Our room is shaping up!  Today I spent some time creating interesting manipulatives [things you can pick up and move with your hands] for you all to use during what we like to call "Word Work". 

I'm going to show you some pictures and explain how you might use these to build letters and words. 

Here are some pieces of driftwood that my family collected special for all of you to form your ABC letter shapes.  These are smooth, dry, and very light weight.  You can build the entire alphabet, you can build words, or you can build your name!

Next I used Lego Duplo blocks and removable Avery labels.  I used a permanent marker called a Sharpie and wrote the upper case [capital] letters on the big Duplo blocks.  I wrote the lower case letters on the small Duplo Blocks. 

I want you to learn something when you come to our class.  Please leave the labels on the Duplo blocks.  We will have more fun if I don't have to fix them again and again because someone likes to peel them off.  I appreciate you showing respect for my work and our classroom supplies.  This makes certain they will last for a very long time! 

You can match the capital letters with their lower case partners.  You can build words.  You can build your name!  Later we will use these to build sentences! 

Several years ago, my family went to the beach and my husband collected [at my request] a very large bag of tiny flat beach stones.  I have used them to create the alphabet so that you can build words with little beach pebbles that we collected for you!  Here are some photos of them:

And finally, with the help of my son and husband, we packed 40 medium sized flat beach rocks up a very steep hill back to our car this weekend.  I used dimensional [that means 3-D] paint and wrote the 40 high frequency words we will all learn in kindergarten this year.  You will be able to use these rocks to learn your 'popcorn words'.  We call them popcorn words because they keep popping up in our reading, writing, and talking!  Maybe we'll have a popcorn word hunt!

I also worked on our poetry area today, but you'll need to wait for me to upload some photos for you of the rest of the room.  Are you getting more excited yet?  I am!

BeeHappy ~

Mrs. D

Monday, August 16, 2010

Our Tree Is Leafing Out

Good evening, Honey Bees ~
     Our tree is leafing out!  You can see the leaves are attached to new branches!  I wonder what will happen next!

     What do you think will happen next?  All I know is that I better get back to the classroom tomorrow to see what else has changed! 

     Our honey bee hive [our room] is almost ready for all of us to start school on September 1st and September 2nd.  And before that, I get to meet you at our school barbeque on August 26th!  I can't wait to meet all of you!

      Bee Happy,

      Mrs. D

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

A Tree is Born

Dear Honey Bees ~

Today our classroom tree was born! 

I can't wait for you to see it on your first day of school!  I know you are going to love it! 

Think of all the things you know about trees.  Talk to your family about what you know.  Think of a question you have about trees.  What is something you wonder about? 

Keep reading my blog to see what happens next!

I'll see you soon!

Bee Happy,

Mrs. D

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Welcome to The Buzz at Mrs. D's Honey Bee Hive 2010-2011!

I hope you are feeling as excited about your child's first day of kindergarten as I am!  I've been in our classroom every day for the past week getting organized and creating a magical learning environment for all of us.  There will be so many opportunities for each of your children to learn in exciting and engaging ways this year! 

The first day of school is different for each child.  Some of your children will come in feeling confident, jumping right in to play with new friends, asking questions of their teacher!  Others will be slightly reserved, come in quiet, observe for a time to make sure it is a safe environment, and then join in with the fun.  Still others will be very nervous, clinging to you as you are about to leave, but once you do walk out the door your child will quickly learn to rely on me as their surrogate safety net.  Soon they will be exhuberant about the great day they are going to have every day in our honey bee hive!  By the time you receive the address to our class blog, you will already have passed the 1st day mark and will have seen for yourself. 

I will be adding photos of our classroom 'before' the children arrive.  You'll be able to see our learning activity areas and our curriculum as we roll it out for the beginning of the year.  You'll be able to see links to our reading, math, writing, and science curriculum resources.  You'll also be able to view links to our state standards and performance expectations, as well as to our district website.

In addition you will find links to our monthly homework calendars, our high frequnency words, the letter of the week, practice words for the week, etc. 

I will include blog post writing that will be directed towards your children as well.  These posts will begin 'Dear Honey Bees~".  I'll use kid friendly language with these posts.  You'll get to sit down with your child and read a note from Mrs. D to them in the beginning of the year, but watch as they begin to learn to read it to you!  This is one of my favorite moments I get to share with you - your child learning how to read before our eyes!!! 

I'll see all of you very soon!

Kind regards,

Mrs. D