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5-Day: Lots of Learning, Lots of Play

As I was thinking about the newsletter this week, I focused on the different academic aspects of the classroom. Looking around, there really is no specific numeracy, literacy or art table. The learning is blended, as it should be for early childhood. So much of what we do is integrated through the many disciplines and domains of early childhood development.

This week, the children created a mural based on the life cycle of a pumpkin. Although this is scientific information, it was introduced through literacy with the book It's Pumpkin Time. The mural was developed through painting with dirt, adding seeds, streamer vines, colored flower coffee filters and pumpkins. The children decided what stage of development their pumpkin was in by observing the color; early in development was green and later in development was orange. Art was the vehicle to develop and demonstrate their learning.

As they explored gourds and squashes in the discovery table, descriptive language was flowing ("this one is bumpy, they both have white and green stripes") along with math concepts ("I have the heaviest one, this stem is taller, the bottom looks like a circle"). One-to-one correspondence was developing as the children used their fine motor skills to roll out playdough pumpkins on counting mats. Here again, lots of language between friends as they socialized, deciding that their pumpkins were actually cookies or pies.

Using the Five Little Pumpkins book and poem, we introduced an art activity which combined literacy, mathematics, and engineering. Each child created their own gate for the pumpkins, counted them out and decorated them. We also looked at how everyone had the same materials, but used them in different designs. It's ok to be different and appreciate others' ideas. We extended this idea to a station called "Can you make a gate for the five little pumpkins?" where they could construct their own gates with blocks.

Using the children's growing interest in the letters in their names, letter stampers helped them identify what these letters are, who shares the same letters, whose name is short, and whose is long. Connections were also made between an actual pumpkin, the word and the letter "P". We also had a special visit from Pre-K one morning to show us their apple taste test. Lots of comparing was done, talking about numbers, less and more in a social connection with our fellow Bowen friends.

Underlying all our fun and daily learning is the social-emotional life-long learning. We hear all the time in 5-Day, "I did a kindness."

Here are all the books from our first Showtime. I can't wait to see what the next one brings!!

Mia -- Beautiful Yetta

Wilfie -- Dinosaurs in the Supermarket

James -- Bruce's Martha's Vineyard Vacation

Asher -- The Little Blue Dragon

Margot -- Dragons Love Tacos

Nate -- Nibble the Book Monster

Ashwin -- Moonshot

Marlo -- D.W. the Picky Eater

Minna -- Professor Wormbug in Search for the Zipperump-a-zoo

Caleb -- Maybelle the Cable Car

Lucas -- Have you seen my Dinosaur?

Wren -- The Jolly Postman

Marie-Sophie -- Auf Mozart's Spuren

Madeline -- Froggy Goes to Hawaii

Connor -- If you give a Mouse a Cookie

Alexander -- What the Dinnosaur did Last Night

Kaia -- Little Boo

Have a great weekend,

Cathy and Kristi

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