Thursday, February 28, 2008
This turned out to be an enjoyable and effortless "retelling" of The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. The story came to life for the children with a costume and some paper food pieces. As the VHC was "eating" his food, the children would shout out, "Now the plums, now the strawberries..." The more the students hear a story, the better they can retell it (orally and in writing). It's always a good idea to retell a story in several different ways such as finger puppets, story boards, or reader's theater. Another benefit of retelling a story is that student's response to literature (in writing) will be clearer due to their understanding of it. We have done several activities with this story this week including having the children sequence the story on a sentence strip, drawing the middle of the story (items of food the VHC ate) and adding a great beginning and ending to the story in Writer's Workshop, and retelling with picture cards but nothing topped the surprise visit from the VHC himself.
Monday, February 25, 2008
Because so many books are read during this Eric Carle author study, making story maps has proven to help the children organize their thoughts and retelling abilities. It is a simple way to make the story telling organized and understandable during both workshop periods. Today students worked on their own personnal story map for The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Those I'll share with you later!!
We have a great program at our school that gets the male members of our school family more involved. It is called BUDs (Brothers, Uncles and Dads). They coordinate Pancake Breakfasts, Movie Nights, and our BUDding Readers Program. This week BUD members were invited to come to school and read to classes before the start of the school day to show students that real men read. Yesterday we had Mr. B. a parent of one of our students read "The Grouchy Ladybug." The students loved hearing the book read and Mr. B. did a marvelous job keeping the children's interest during his stay this morning. Today we had Mr. A. read two books including "The Mixed Up Chameleon." He did an equally great job and now the children are asking when their father can come in to read. The BUDs Club has increased male involvement and visibility at the school which is a very good thing!! Thank you BUD volunteers for caring and making a real difference in our children's lives.!
Thursday, February 21, 2008
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Thursday, February 14, 2008
For the next five weeks, we will be working on our author study of Eric Carle. Our activities will include making class books, using dramatic play to enhance understanding, and drawing/writing in a Reader's Notebook each day to log thoughts/questions/wonderings about the author's work.
This will allow students the opportunity to look deeply into the wonderful world of Eric Carle.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Friday, February 8, 2008
Ms. Karen from Mexico shared pictures of their lovely beaches. Mexico is part of Latin America. It is the southern neighbor of the United States. It is four times larger than Texas. Mexico is home to two differerent types of land. Two mountain ranges cut through Mexico. Some parts are covered by deserts. Tropical jungles cover the other areas. People around the world enjoy Mexican food. Mexico introduced corn, chocolate, and chilies to the world. The children made their own tortillas by balling up the flour mixure and pressing down on the tortilla press. Cheese was added and a quesadilla was made for them (while they waited).
As the week ends and we remember the countries that we visited: Turkey, Venezuala, Vietnam, China, Costa Rica, and Mexico, we can celebrate a social studies journey that the children will always remember. Mrs. Johnson and I would like to thank the parents of our class that made this week possible and for all of the hard work you put into it to make it such a success. I can't wait to experience "International Week" part 2 next year...I can only imagine!!! Adiós!
Thursday, February 7, 2008
The Chinese New Year is determined by the Chinese lunar calendar. The new year begins with the new moon. The Chinese New Year falls during China's springtime. The new year celebrates the season for planting, as well as all new beginnings. Part of getting ready for the new year is making sure your home is neat and clean before the new year arrives. Tidy up your house -- sweep out the old and bring in the New Year. Firecrackers and lanterns are an important part of the New Year celebration because the evil spirits are scared away from the bright lights of the firecrackers and lanterns.
At the end of the day, the children were gifted with "lucky money" in red envelopes called "lai-see." The envelopes had designs in gold and holiday wishes written on it. The children were delighted to receive such a nice gift. We had a wonderful day learning about the Chinese New Year!
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Monday, February 4, 2008
Turkey has very rich folkloric traditions which have been kept alive for centuries due to the characteristics of the Turkish people. Storytelling brings many different things to each one of us, but growing up in the rural parts of Turkey you are bound to see plays performed by puppets that tell the stories of Turkeys historical past. Puppetry is a life-long tradition in Turkey .Very important figures in Turkish folklore are Karagoz and his friend Hacivat, who depict events from the daily lives of the Turkish people in the form of the "Traditional Turkish Shadow Theater". In the early parts of the 17th century "shadow puppets" lead to the development of oral folk literature throughout the Turkey in which professional storyteller's recounted popular tales using puppets. Some story-tellers would even accompany themselves on musical instruments or make dramatic gestures at appropriate points in the tale.
Another popular figure in Turkish folklore is Nasreddin Hoca who reflects the peculiarities of the Turkish people. Nasreddin Hoca is the best-known figure who has many legendary encounters with kings and common people. While seeming to act the fool, Nasreddin Hoca actually displays the folly of the other. His stories all hold a moral or lesson.