A message from SK
We’ve been discussing what’s easy and hard about playing by yourself, with two people, and in a big group. Ask your son which way he likes to play and why. We’ve also discussed what it looks and sounds like to be a good communicator. Next we’ll discuss caring, what it looks like, sounds like and how it relates to play.
In health and life skills study with Martha Boyce, the focus has been on feelings and how to recognize how boys are feeling throughout the day and during their play. Discussions have centred around facial expression and body language and what information can be gathered by looking and noticing these areas.
We’ve started our “starting corner” capital letters (H, K, L, U, V, W, X, Y, Z) program as part of our “Handwriting Without Tears” program in language studies. We’ve learned about Hippy Hippo, Kimmy Kangaroo, Lizzy Lamb, Uncle Upton and Victor Vampire; their sound, action and proper letter formation. Ask your son about these letters. We’ve also begun to add more details to our journal writing and pictures. The phrase “When I’m done, I’ve only just begun” is one we’re using to encourage the boys to add to their writing and pictures. Finally, we’ll stretch out our words and write the sounds that we hear while encouraging the boys to use finger spaces between their words.
We’re continuing with numeracy and will start our guided math groups. We’ve also been doing a lot of work with probability. We’ve linked this topic to our daily schedule and have also connected this concept to our play unit through a roll and record dice game.
A squirrel inquiry is underway. Our discovery centre has been transformed following interest from the boys. It began at the creation station when Asher, Michael R. and Sebastian used recyclable materials to build a squirrel house. We recorded pieces of their conversation: “Can we bring this outside?” “We can put soil, twigs and acorns in their rooms.” “Squirrels eat acorns.”
Several boys sensed excitement and there was a fury of activity to furnish the squirrel house with pieces of nature. The boys check the squirrel house frequently for signs of squirrel activity. To support their enthusiasm and to acknowledge their ideas and interests, we opened a squirrel discovery centre: a space in our classroom that honours investigation, exploration, questioning and discovery. The boys illustrate their knowledge of squirrel homes and their thinking is posted in the centre.
“Squirrels live in trees with holes.” “They like bark, too.” “Squirrels eat nuts in their homes and they live in trees.”
Before long, the discovery centre extended outside to the learning garden. Asher suggested taking photos of squirrels and their nests. We agreed that this is a great idea and a wonderful way to confirm our knowledge.
The boys searched high and low for clues of squirrel life. Sebastian explored the bushes. He took a photograph of a small nook nestled beside the school wall. Michael took a photo of a hole in the soil. Asher snapped a photo of an enormous tree.
It’s an exciting student-led inquiry. Andrew and Ethan recently initiated interest in squirrel food. Ethan told us that squirrels like seeds. Andrew asked: “Do squirrels eat carrots?”
It seems as though we have our very own busy squirrels.
Warm regards from the SK team.