Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A First

Another great day in kindergarten!

For the first time this year, the "student of the day" asked to read their story to the class. Of coarse, I'm delighted to move over and make room for a kindergartner to read the story.

Lilly did a fantastic job. Because she had recently read this story to her sister's preschool class,  she performed beautifully. Pure pleasure! (I got most of the reading on video, but unfortunately the sound track was poor. The video simply did not do justice to the reading.)

Here's a photo, at least. I'm glad I thought to take a regular photo.

News: Thursday and Friday I will meet with next year's kindergarten students. Michelle Sewell will be  my substitute. See you Monday.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Smilin' Like Spring

Oh the weather has been pleasant, and the mood in kindergarten reflects the happiness of the weather outdoors. The recent spell of rains is over at least for the time being and we are able to get outdoors for fresh air, exercise, and sunshine.

The sun is warm enough we can use sunshine and fresh breezes to dry the towels we use to clean the tables.

Today, Jackson brought snack. It was enjoyed by all.

We heard the first of four stories in a collection about the dog, Mc Duff.

I'm seeing some great art happening. Here is one drawn by Pedro:

And, the news:

Enjoy the great weather. Tomorrow is music with Andrew, buddies, and the longer day.

Be well.

Friday, March 25, 2011

March 25, 2011

Hi all!

If you should need to email me, please know that my earlier email addresses at yahoo are still down. I do not know when they might come back.

Meanwhile, I opened an email account with the google service, gmail.

If you type in dangurney51 (at)  well, you know.. at I should receive your message.

Meanwhile, we had a good day in kindergarten. Here's the story of the day in photos starting with the easel news:

We "read" Gavin's book from the library called Scorpion Man. It really interested the class. I tend to forget that many children, boys especially, prefer non-fiction titles. Odd, since when I was little I strongly preferred books that could provide me with facts about the world around me.

Still, there's nothing like a good story, and Hannah brought in a Hawaiian tale about a turtle named Limu. I think now I'm caught up on stories brought in for sharing.

We started our new table groups today and the change seemed welcomed by all. I saw many happy, smiling faces.

When we rearrange groupings it is necessary to rearrange the way we store the workbooks. I had not yet gotten to that task by the end of the day.

You might imagine how pleased I felt when I found Makayla and Samantha at work on this needed project without my even asking them to do it. (Very pleased, indeed!)

That's what I call LEVEL ONE behavior: doing helpful things for the people in your life without anyone asking you.

Kudos to those two girls and their families!

Have a good weekend. I see on Accuweather that it will rain tomorrow. But when that rain clears out we may see some sun. Sounds good to me.

Be well.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

March 24, 2011

Boy, did it rain today. We spent the day indoors, doing math, art, and our usual routines, sans art which we had on Monday.

We rolled pairs of dice for the first part of the morning, recording the resulting sums to see what would happen. I don't know how many students are supposed to see that since there are more ways to roll, say a 7 than there are to roll a 2 or a  12 that you can expect to see more 7s and 8's. I think two students "got" it. For most it was an exercise in process and counting and combining spots on dice.

Here's the final result of our rolls:

We had recess indoors. Several students spent some time at the art table:

Could all this rain turn us all into Merpeople?

Rebecca drew this one for me.

The great thing about drawing Mermaids is not having to worry about feet and legs.


We will have new table groups starting tomorrow. I think everyone will be pleased by the new table groups.

The books we sent home yesterday for homework do not need to be returned. You'll get one more late in the year. Please do the activities in them.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

March 23, 2011

Kind of an off-day for me; someone hacked into my email account and has sent everyone I know a message about how I need them to send me money to help me overseas.

I'm not overseas! I was teaching at school.

Here are a few photos of the day. With apologies for the brevity of the post as I try to reestablish the integrity of my email account.

(If you email me, please don't expect a reply from me. I'm not able to access my own account.)

Some faces in the crowd:




I'm Okay!

I'm okay!

If you get an email from my account describing some overseas distress, please ignore it.

 Someone hacked into my email account and is posting false information about me. Don't send any money!!

In reality, I'm fine and at work. Well, as fine as one can be when their email has been hacked.

Take care,


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

March 22, 2011

It's said that there's no key to the universe.

Luckily, the universe was left unlocked.

That's how I'm feeling right now after working with the kids in KIDS club this afternoon. Most of them have learned the Soundabet almost completely and mastered them to the point that they're quick and automatic. I was putting together cards like OY-S-T-ER and asking the kids to "sing" the sounds together instead of saying them in ordinary speech, which tends to separate the sounds.

So the students were singing the Soundabet sounds together: "oyster" and "storm" and "cartoon" and on and on.

We teachers live for days when the learning all comes together and the students act like it's easy to read. Of course it's easy... once you know how. I feel grateful for all the parents who've given their kids practice at home.

A good today with the whole class, too. We did have a lot absent: Elena, Elsa, Gavin, Mollie. Elena's grandpa brought snack in even though she was not able to come in today. Thank you!

Ryan demonstrated his mastery of the Soundabet and got the class it's full choice time at the end of the day. It was Danny's birthday today and tomorrow it will be Alyssa's.

Jaden working on Zoobs

Lilly did a wax melt drawing.

The birthday boy

A tower

Monday, March 21, 2011

March 21, 2011

Danny's day today. It's the first full day of Spring, but there's a wintry feeling still lingering round here.

Today is the last day Danny (he wants to be called Dann sometimes) will be five years old.

He enjoyed his special day today. Tomorrow, he's six.

He brought us snack

Here is the story he brought to share. Natasha read it aloud to the class.

He enjoyed, as we all did, another art lesson from Mark.

We were able to get outside today and ride bikes, pick up the playground and play outdoors. We are between rainy spells; it's nice to play outdoors.

Enjoy the windy, cloudy, sunny weather. Be well.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

What Can Happen When You Start Playing Ukulele at 5

Readers of Mr. Kindergarten know I'm pretty jazzed about the ukulele.

Watch this video at least until 2:30 when Taimane (at 13) talks about beginning ukulele at age 5.

You might also want to visit my other blog to see Taimane at about age 20, all grown up. Click on this: LINK

Friday, March 18, 2011

March 18, 2011

Our lesson in math today involved creating various patterns in movement and symbolizing those patterns in writing with our own made-up or borrowed symbols. The students grasped the concept well.

Another rainy day! I think we're all starting to tire of all the rainy weather. Luckily there always seems to be something of great interest indoors. Today we got out warming trays so that some of us could make drawings with wax crayons that melted into the paper fibers.

The Dwarf House now has a new dining set. Cameran got to open it up and add it to the existing furnishing, as we happened to fill up our clean up chart on the day she was "Person-of-the-Day." The Dwarf House and all its furnishings are new to kindergarten. It is proving to be verrry popular with all the students. It's a wonderful stimulant to young imaginations. I see how the Dwarf House the affords students many opportunities to develop and use social skills like sharing, taking turns, collaborating, and leadership.

Are they having chicken for dinner?
And the big news of the day: Quinn mastered the Soundabet.

Good for you Quinn. You made our day.

Have a wonderful weekend. (Looks like a lot of rain is headed in our direction—please be safe and well.)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

An Art Lesson

We had our second art lesson today. Mark has a certain magic touch in getting students to put the pencil to paper and come up with a satisfying result. We're loving our Thursday art lessons. Here, have a look:

Mark at work

Mark taught the kindergarten a little about cartooning, Van Gogh, and how to draw things in perspective.

Demo on the white board

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Day in Photos--March 16, 2011

Another day zipped by—number 128. Here's the day in photos.

Learning the G7 chord

Studying the properties of wood

Maddie and Makayla

Tyler and Ivan

Jackson's building


Buddies in the garden

Pedro pulled a carrot

Joanna and Rebecca


Sami and Marley

Jaden, Joey, Calvin

Max built a parking garage

Dena and Maddie Mollie, Makayla

Genna and Lilly

Olivia and Samantha and their tower

Kids connecting across grades, learning to help each other and cooperate. They built more than structures. They exercised their imaginations and built social skills.