Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Hanukkah - The Festival of Lights


Today we were fortunate to have "S" (a former student), assisted by her brother "J" (a current student), and father, Chip present the "The Festival of Lights" tradition to our class. "S" told the class that the festival is observed by lighting the nine-branched Menorah, one additional light on each night of the holiday, progressing to eight on the final night. An extra light called a shamash (Hebrew: "guard" or "servant") is also lit each night for the purpose of lighting the others. Hanukkah is a wonderful holiday of renewed dedication, faith, hope and spiritual light. It's a holiday that says: "Never lose hope." "S" told us the story of the victory, thru the miracles of Hashem, of a small band of Maccabees over the pagan Syrian-Greeks who ruled over Israel. The children loved hearing the story but, moreover, loved learning a new game "dreidel". Students were given eight Hershey Kisses and a dreidel and learned the symbols and how to play. A big "thank you" to the Chip, S and J for sharing this tradition with the class.

Time for Celebration - December, 2009


Today was our Holiday Breakfast and Gingerbread House Making Day! Students enjoyed a beautiful brunch which included bacon, sausage, scrambled eggs, bagels, fruit and hot-griddled pancakes! After the breakfast, it was time to make our Gingerbread Houses. Parents manned each table and assisted the children in creating their very own Gingerbread House. It was surely an experience they will remember! Thank you Melanie for all of the great pictures! At this time, we would like to thank all of our parents for a fantastic year, filled with wonderful memories of their child. We wish all of you a very merry Christmas and Happy 2010!

Polar Bears, Foxes, and Birds -- Oh My!!


Each year around the holidays, our school participates in another Chets Creek tradition called the "Holiday Auction." Each class is invited to make something "holidayish" and display it in the front lobby. In past years, parents and visitors placed a bid on an item and the money raised went to the child's classroom. This year, we decided, as a school, to give back in some way to our community and/or the world around us. Our class is animal loving so we decided to donate our wreath money to adopt three animals (of the student's choice) from the World Wildlife Fund. The class chose a polar bear, arctic fox and...

...a blue-footed booby.

We will soon get a picture and literature sent to the class of our adopted animals and hope to raise more money for these special creatures at next year's auction. The picture below is the wreath that Mrs. K. Morris bid on an won together with a small decorated tree. The children are very excited to call these animals "their own" and hope they are around for a very long time!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

December Writing - Holiday Excitement


With holiday excitement in the air, we thought it would be a good idea to funnel that energy into an art project combined with Writer's Workshop. Students were shown a sample of different size present boxes (see above picture) and asked to recreate them. They were given the construction paper, cut out the different shapes and glued them on the black paper. Then they were asked to write about each gift - who it is for and what is inside each one. This was a wonderful way for students to use their imagination and writing skills. Enjoy reading a sampling of the "present" writing!

Madison wrote:
"On Christmas, the red gift would be for Megan. The green gift is for my dogs, In the box was balls. The yellow box is for the Humane Society. The blue box is for Miss Karen."


Jack wrote:
"On Christmas, the big blue present is for Chatfield and it is going to be a Hess plane and a Hess train. The little green box is for Emmy's stuff - and a My Little Pony house. The yellow present is for my dad. My dad's present is a new Lo book. The red present is for my (mom) Coach Hall - a new pair of earrings."


Josey wrote:
"On Christmas, I would give the blue box gift to Chase. It would be a spy tank. The green box gift would be for Lily. It would be a rose. The red box would be for Lexie. It would be a crown. The yellow box would be for Lauren. It would be a new puppy."

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

'Tis the Season


It is already that traditional time at our school where we decorate the holiday tree in our front lobby. Each class creates a string of garland with each classmates picture on the strand. Snowmen, hands, ornaments, and musical notes are adorning the tree this year. We added a string of beautiful Christmas stockings. Thanks to JB for putting up the tree every year and placing each strand on it so perfectly. Another tradition that we do (a classroom project) is collect pet supplies to give to our local Humane Society. We have collected dog bowls, towels, bleach, detergent, and pet toys for the animals waiting adoption to a good home. This year we are having a representative from the Humane Society come and speak to the children and he is bringing his dog. We will then present them both with the gifts to bring back to our animal friends. After all, ...'tis the season!!