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Pre-K: Up, Upside Down, Unifix Cubes and Ugo Rondinone

"Uu" week was one of cooperation in Pre-K! Children paired up, worked in groups and cooperated as a class to sort, count, build, balance and perform our very first play.

Language and Literacy

Where else would children work on identifying "Uu’s" but "Uunder" the table?! They also pinned letter streamers onto a unicorn’s mane, made new place cards for lunch (ours were getting mUcky), and created the letters in our alphabet using unicorn slime! The most amazing way children used language this week was by tying it to our performance of Silly Sally. We read the book a number of times, and each child got a role. They decorated masks using paper plates and we performed in two groups. Videos are posted in Google Photos!

Math and Science

Our math work this week made great use of our classroom’s and the school’s collection of "Uunifix" cubes. Children played both "Race to 10" and "Race to 20" in pairs. They also sorted by color, counted and estimated in groups. The most amazing thing happened when we collected all of the "Uunifix" cubes in the school and lined them up by color. We, then, had an extensive conversation about which line had the most, which had the fewest, how many more did one group have than another...we were very impressed!

Martine has started a new format for our weekly Science work. Each child will have the option to lead our science group work with support from Martine, if they wish. This is by no means required, but, if your child has a particular science interest that they’d like to share with the class, please let us know and we will make it happen. This week, Ashwin led our group in making paper airplanes that go "Uup"!

Children also explored the concept of “up” through filling balloons with baking soda and vinegar and watching the balloon fill up with the gas that was created. We heard lots of discussions about whether more baking soda or vinegar was needed and how big they could get the balloon!

Art and Music

This week, children made "Uunicorn" horns and played with "Uunicorn" slime! We also discovered Ugo Rondinone, a Swiss artist who, inspired by the hoodoo rocks in Utah, ( painted giant rocks and stacked them. Children cleaned rocks with water and toothbrushes and then painted them in bright neon colors. They then worked together to stack them as he did in Las Vegas. Here is a link to photos of his work:

We then divided children into 3 teams and asked them to build "Uup" like Ugo. Take a look at our photos. Below are some of the comments we overheard while they built and balanced:

  • Flat ones first!

  • I stacked it and I did big, medium, little.

  • We balanced them and put the flat one first.

  • That one definitely shouldn’t go on top because it’s too heavy and big.

  • This one’s the base because it’s our largest one.

  • The longer it takes to paint your rock, the less dry it will be when you’re done.

  • You are doing a great job!

  • The little one isn’t big enough to go across.

  • That’s the hardest because it’s the roundest on the bottom.

  • The orange one is basically the only one you can put things on top of because it’s the biggest.

  • Stabilizing helps things stand up.

  • We made a wall.

  • We need blocks around it to stabilize it.

  • We need the flattest for the bottom.

  • This has to be the last one; it has a pointy top.

Steve and the school met for Music all together this week and wrote a song about getting out of bed in the morning. The kids loved creating their own music and grooving along to the beat. Pre-K does a wonderful job of setting a fantastic listening example to the rest of the school.

We want to send an extra thank you to Becky, Rowen’s mom, for playing the "Uukulele" for our class. She is just learning (teaching herself, no less) and modeled trying and practicing in the most beautiful way.

Stay warm and safe this long weekend, and we will see you on Tuesday!

Emily and Martine

Questions to ask your child:

Who did you play in Silly Sally?

Which was the longest line of Unifix cubes?

What did you learn about stacking rocks like Ugo Rondinone?

Can you show me how to make a paper airplane?

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