Friday, August 25, 2006

Learning Rules and Routines

This is a cantaloupe from our garden. Next week, we are going to taste the cantaloupe and a watermelon from our garden. We have several cantaloupes left, more okra, tomato plants (but not tomatos yet), and of course, pumpkins! The pumpkins are getting bigger every day. We will definitely have pumpkins ready for Halloween!

In our classroom, we have been talking about the rules and learning our routines. Some of the things that we are learning are: how to walk on the yellow line, how to line up to go somewhere (enrichment, breakfast, lunch), how to wash our hands in the cafeteria, how to say the pledge and sing "My Country Tis of Thee", how to check the weather and graph it on our Weather Graph, how to say the days of the week, how to count the days in the month. When we use the calendar, we are also learning about patterns. We have been learning about places and people around our school and what they do to help us at school. We have been learning about red, and we even made a book about the color red. We have been learning our new classmate's names. Next week, we will be sorting colors, identifying red, learning the numeral 1, learning about circles, Humpty Dumpty and about families.


Parents, if you have not sent photographs of your family yet, please try to do so soon. We will be putting up a display with each child's family photographs, plus we will make a book for each child to have at school with photos of their families.


Don't forget that students do not come to school next Friday, September 1st. because the teachers have a Professional Development Day. We will be in workshops learning new things to help us teach our students. The next Monday, September 4th, is Labor Day. There will be no school that day for students or teachers.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Welcome Back To School!


Does anyone know what this is a picture of? It's a pumpkin! It's one of the extremely large pumpkins. We went out to look at it today, and we all got to touch it. It doesn't feel like a pumpkin yet. It is very smooth and round. We also looked at the watermelon, cantaloupe and gourds while we were out in the garden. But it's too hot to spend much time outside, so we just took a look and went back into the nice air conditioned classroom! Today we went to music, and we had a very good time. We sang our names, clapped our names, and danced to some music. Right now we are learning about the color red, counting one object and recognizing the numeral 1, and identifying circles. We are also learning the nursery rhyme "Humpty Dumpty". In the classroom, we are all enjoying the zebra finches. They make little noises, talking to each other. The finches take baths, drink water, eat a lot and fly around the cage. They sometimes get IN the seed container to eat! They are making a nest, and there is a little more in the nest every day. When they get finished making their nest, we hope that they will lay some eggs! We also worked on the computer today. We know what a mouse is and what we do with the mouse. In a few weeks, when we learn how to use the mouse a little better, we will be able to get on the computer by ourselves! Parents, don't forget about the Parent Orientation next Tuesday, August 22nd at 6:00 pm. And also mark your calendars for September 19th Back To School Open House and PTA meeting. If you are interested in working with the PTA or being an officer in the PTA, let me know. While you are marking your calendar for the PTA meeting, remember that September 1st is a Professional Inservice Day for the teachers, no students attend. And, September 4th is Labor Day, so no school for students or teachers! And don't forget that PTA dues are $4.00 this year, and Room Fees are $6.00. I will be sending home a snack calendar the first of September. Since we were staggering attendance for testing, and there isn't much of August left, I just bought snacks to finish the month. But be looking for the calendar in a week or so. Parents, please send back the Emergency Information sheet (its the lime green piece of paper). With little children, no matter how closely you watch them, they sometime have accidents, and sometime they feel fine when they leave home, but by 10:00 am they are sick. It is very important that we have working contact numbers. And, if you change your address or telephone number during the year, please let me know about the change. One more thing...don't forget to send photographs for me to copy for the books they are making about their family. I will copy them and get them back to you in a day or two. Thank you so much for all of your support. If you need to contact me, the classroom telephone number is 364-4229, and my email is jhowell@caddo.k12.la.us.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Back To School

We are back in school now! This past week we have been on a staggered schedule due to testing, but tomorrow (Wednesday, August 16th) everyone comes back to school. Right now we have four students in our class, and another little boy will be joining our class next week. We are excited about the new year, although Ms. Taylor has been transfered to another school, and we really miss her!

Make sure to check this site often, because I will be sending notes home, but I will also post information on this site, such as a calendar of school events, information about what we are doing in class, photographs of some of our work, upcoming field trips, and suggestions of things you can do at home to help your child. If you have questions, you can email me at: jhowell@caddo.k12.la,us Be looking for more information on this site in the next few days!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Two Zebra Finches!

That's right! We're getting two zebra finches! They will live in the cage in our classroom. They will make a nest in the cage, and they will probably lay some eggs and maybe we'll have some baby zebra finches! We won't get them until later in the week, but we want to be ready for our new pets.

Guess What We Are Getting In Our Classroom!

Guess what we are getting in our classroom! Here's a hint...it is going to live in this cage. And there are going to be two of them. They are little, and eat seeds, and they fly around in the cage.

Teeny Tiny Baby Pumpkin



This is a picture of a teeny little baby pumpkin. The little round yellow bump on the green stem is the pumpkin. The crinkled part attached to it is the flower. All vegetables and fruits start with flowers. When a bee or other insect gets pollen on it from one flower, then spreads the pollen by drinking the nectar from a different flower, the flower is fertilized, and the fruit or vegetables start to grow. This little pumpkin is only a few days old. This is the Big Max pumpkin, which will hopefully turn out to be really really big. If it gets to be really really big, we may try to enter it in the Caddo Parish Fair and the Louisiana State Fair. We have a book that tells how to grow a big pumpkin, so we are going to follow the directions, and maybe it will work!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Getting Ready For School To Start

This photograph of the Big Max pumpkins was taken on Friday, July 28th, one week after the top photograph in the last post (the one underneath this one) was taken. The pumpkins had grown that much in one week! Isn't it amazing how fast plants grow? I went to school today to check on all the animals, water the plants and start getting the room ready for the start of school next week, and not only had the pumpkins grown even more, but all of them had flowers on them. And when you have flowers, you will soon have little baby pumpkins! So we might have a few teeny little pumpkins growing by the time that school starts! We also have a few new birdhouse gourds starting to grow on the vines. Yesterday I attended a workshop where I got a lot of great ideas to use this year in our classroom. We are going to have a great year! Only one more week until school starts! I hope that everyone is ready for the new year!