Happy April!

Dear parents,

As we continue with our storytelling unit, we are to looking closely at classic fairy tales and the different ways they are told. The last two weeks, we inquired into The Three Little Pigs. The children crafted straw, stick and brick houses onto cardboard to role play with. They dressed up to role play the story, used puppets and also built intricate houses out of playdough and other supplies to retell the story in different ways. While doing this, we also used mathematical language to compare the size and weight of the pigs and their houses.

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This week, we have focused on the Three Billy Goats Gruff. The children set the scene up in the tuff spot (meadow, river, grassy knoll) and built a bridge over the river to retell the story. They have also been using puppets and re-reading the different versions of the stories read so far.

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We have also set up a felt story telling board in our classroom. The children are telling stories through songs we have learned throughout the year.

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In Maths, we continue to compare size and weight through our Unit of Inquiry activities. We also introduced a Birthday Bears activity as well, which uses manipulatives to represent numbers in different ways.

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In English we have been playing with rhythms and rhymes both is stories and songs. This can be a bit challenging at this age. We always take the time to point out the rhymes in stories so the children have time to listen and process them. The children are always writing, but this week have been practicing forming the letters in their friends’ names.

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As we continue with our mindful yoga practice, mindful coloring has been introduced. Wow, what a hit! This allows for them to quietly focus on their own work while listening to mindful music. This is a great exercise that requires focus and concentration and is excellent for fine motor development. Included below are some other movement activities that were introduced.

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Have a lovely and relaxing holiday,

Deborah & Mai

Dear parents,

We have had a ton of fun over the past couple of weeks! Our learning engagements have provoked a good deal of thinking and cooperation from the children.

Over the past two weeks, as part of our Unit of Inquiry, we have focused on the story of ‘Goldilocks and the Three Little Bears’. The children have creatively retold this story through role play, puppet shows and sequenced drawings. They also made ‘Playdough Porridge’ for use in their stories. And on Friday, we made real porridge for our cooking lesson this week. Yum! This has also created the perfect opportunity to compare objects (bears, bowls, chairs, beds) using math language such as bigger, smaller, biggest, smallest, taller, shorter etc.

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This week, the children particularly enjoyed an activity named ‘find the sound around the room’. We have been reviewing the letters b,r,m,n,p,h. Objects are hidden around the room beginning with these sounds/letters. Once the children spot it, they draw it and then try to write the sounds they hear. It’s been a big hit!

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At the beginning of the week, the children came in first thing in the morning discussing animals and bugs outside and how to treat and protect them. One child suggested we build a frog houses so we brainstormed ideas for design and materials. a small group designed houses on paper first and then worked in pairs to build their houses. It was quite a process. On Monday we will place them outside to see if any frogs decide to move in. 🙂

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I have recently taken a mindful yoga professional development course and have just started teaching the children some breathing, posing through songs and chanting. They are really enjoying it so please ask them to show you what they have learned so far.

I have a small request. For hygiene and basic cleanliness, I would like to request you send in a pair of ‘indoor’ shoes for your children. These will be shoes that the children will wear inside the classroom and they will stay at school. Please make sure the shoes have rubber bottoms so as not to soak up any moisture in the bathroom. If you have any questions about this please let me know.

Have a lovely weekend!

Deborah & Mai

 

 

 

Happy New Year!

Dear parents,

Welcome back from the Tet holiday. I hope it was fun and relaxing for you all. This week we have been very busy preparing for our Performing Arts Celebration that we will present to you on Tuesday March 1st @ 9am. The performance will tell the story of the ‘The Enormous Turnip’. The children have worked very hard on some unique hats they will be wearing during this performance.

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They also practiced their songs this week during our ECC assembly with Ms. Alexis.

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We even made turnip turnovers! They were delicious!

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In Maths, we have been learning to connect spoken number names and quantities to ten. Here are some pictures of the games and activities we have been engaging in to help learn this concept.

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The children are continuing to practice their letters and sounds and are making some great connections when adding print to their books and drawings. Here are a couple of phonics and letter recognition activities.

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The children are also adding new ideas to their Cinema corner. This is a place where the children dress up and act out their stories onstage. Here is a picture of their brainstorming. We are still in the process of adding items from the list.

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Important: Please send in a pair of black pants and a black top with your child on Monday for use in the PAC. Also, label this bag with their name so we can keep track. Thank you! 

Have a lovely weekend,

Deborah & Mai

Dear parents,

Pattern, patterns & more patterns!

We have had lots of fun with patterning over the past couple of weeks. The children started creating simple patterns and now are creating patterns with more complexity. They are constantly pointing them out in our environment as well as creating them unprompted with materials in the classroom.

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Counting, counting, and still more counting!

As the children continue developing their fluency for counting forwards and backwards, we continue to practice this in a variety of ways. They each got a menu with numbers and pictures of snacks and were asked to collect the correct amount. Then they got to eat them of course! Later in the week, we had a fruit and veggie count. Instead of numbers and pictures, they were given a dot pattern to represent the amount to collect.

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We have also been learning many number songs which we shared with you at our assembly this week. Thank you to those parents who were able to attend!

In English, we continue to listen and identify the beginning sounds in words and add print to our books and drawings. We are also beginning to share our favorite stories from home. I shared one of my favorite stories this week called “Press Here”. The children loved it. Maybe ask your child to try to retell it to you.

Tet Bags of love was a great success!

Thank you for all the donations for the Tet Bag Appeal. It will mean a great deal to the two families that K1DV is supporting. UNIS will be delivering these to families along the Red River tomorrow morning.

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Reminders:

*Please remember to send your child to school in a warm jacket, clothes and socks.

*Please make sure your child has a change of clothes at school and it is replaced the next day if used.

*Parent teacher conferences are next Monday & Wednesday. Please make sure you have read your child’s report and come prepared with any questions or discussion points you may have.

*Next Friday is our Tet celebration here at school. Please send your child in an Ao Dai for this important day.

Have a lovely weekend!

Deborah & Mai

 

Welcome Back!

Dear parents,

We hope you have had a lovely holiday and spent some relaxing quality time with family. This week the children have been getting back into the swing of things. They are very excited to be back together again in our classroom environment. They spent time creating a storybook of their holiday and now are starting to add print to their drawings. This will help them to see themselves as writers. In maths, we have been working with patterning and counting forwards and backwards to and from ten. For our new Unit of Inquiry, we are continuing to make puppets to tell stories. We’ve been busy as usual! On Monday you were sent the K1 blog, which includes specific curriculum focus for us over the next two weeks. Please make sure to take a peek.

The Tet Bag Appeal is now upon us. This is a great time to help a family in need along the Red River. You will be sent a google doc today or tomorrow to sign up for specific items to donate.

Please check your child’s backpack for scholarship fund donation information. This program provides an amazing opportunity for students and has a positive impact on our school community as a whole.

Parent teacher conferences are just around the corner. Please make sure you have read your child’s report that was sent out last month prior to joining us for your scheduled time.

Lastly, please follow the link below for the latest blog from the PE department.

http://blogs.unishanoi.org/physicaleducation/2016/01/11/welcome-back/

Have a lovely weekend,

Deborah & Mai

 

 

 

The holidays have arrived!

Dear parents,

It has been such a pleasure teaching your children this year and I can’t believe the winter holiday is already here! Our classroom is always a very busy place of learning. Here are a few things we have been up to.

The children decided they were tired of our Smiley Cafe corner and wanted to change it into an island. They brainstormed ideas and names. They decided to call it “Volcano Pirate K1DV Island”. They needed a boat, coconut trees, banana trees, a volcano, a campfire with sticks and a treasure box filled with money and diamonds. They cut out and painted what they needed and even made pirate flags and eye patches.

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In math, we have been learning about ordinal numbers. The children have been playing games gaining the understanding of 1st, 2nd, 3rd and last. We have also been reading sequential stories and discussing what happened in order.

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The children have also been introduced to a variety of new fine motor activities and have enjoyed exploring them independently and while working cooperatively in pairs.

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The “Alphabet Hunt” game was also a big hit this week. The children carried their clipboards around the classroom and tallied how many a’s, b’s, c’s and so on they could find.

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Have a wonderful holiday with your families and we look forward to seeing you all in the New Year!

Deborah & Mai

Dear parents,

Thank you for sending in items for the children to use in our cafe. The children have spent a lot of time making menus and money and organizing all of the food. Many suggestions were made for the cafe name. We took a vote and the winner went to…”The Smiley Cafe!”

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Our Maths focus has been shapes and sorting over the past couple weeks. We are learning the names of different shapes, the vocabulary to describe them and are finding them in our environment. We are also learning to sort objects according to their attributes.

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BUT, the coolest thing that happened this week in was when one student connected the date on the calendar with the number on her house. This sparked a very interesting group discussion about the different places we have seen numbers and the purpose they have. We then went on a ‘number walk’ around campus to locate and take pictures of numbers. The children wrote down the numbers they saw, we took pictures and then reflected on our journey. This was a fantastic child led inquiry!

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The children have started creating detailed books in class and are learning to re-tell their stories. Next week the children will begin to share and re-tell these stories with partners. This will be very helpful as they are also learning what it means to be a good listener and a good speaker.

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As we continue our Unit of Inquiry, we have added a ‘dark room’ to our classroom this week which the children are calling ‘The Cave’. A couple of them suggested that flashlights might be useful in this space and so we added those this morning for them to explore and experiment with.

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Lastly, Ms. Mai and I were so touched this morning by all of the beautiful cards, flowers and gifts the children gave to us for Teacher Appreciation Day. We love teaching your children so much. It is such a rewarding experience and we thank you!

Have a lovely weekend.

Deborah & Mai

 

What does it mean to be responsible?

Dear Parents,

We were very busy this week in K1DV! The children learned all about the letter ‘s’ and were very excited to discover how many words they could come up with that began with this sound. The children also created a ‘s’nake for our phonics craft activity.

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On Friday, our cooking day, the children baked ‘s’cones. They were delicious!

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Sally the Sloth also introduced herself this week. She will be helping us in the classroom throughout the year with various learning activities as well as helping to show us how to care for each other.

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Our first provocation for our Unit of Inquiry was also presented this week. Usually the bell is rung for clean up time and the children are directed in how to tidy up the classroom. Instead, they were told it was snack time and were given no other instruction.  It was interesting listening to them try to problem solve where they were going to eat their snack as all of the tables were messy from our morning play. They all decided to have a picnic on the carpet and on one table that was clear.

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After snack and outside play, we reflected on our tidy up through pictures, video and classroom discussion and tried to figure out a solution for our messy classroom. Through these reflections, the children have been learning about responsibility. We will be further discussing their responsibility at home as well in the coming weeks.

We have also been talking about the importance of caring not only for our belongings, but also each other. We visited the friendship bench in our outside play area. This is a place children can go when feeling sad or lonely. We talked about how to be a caring friend when you see someone on the bench and what you could do to help them.

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Ms. Megan and Ms. Nitasha both came this week to share stories with our class. It’s always fun to have new storytellers!

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This week we will be learning all about the letter ‘a’. Also, if you have not yet sent in a family picture, please do so as we will begin talking about our families this week.

Have a lovely week,

Deborah & Mai

Our First Week in K1DV!

Dear parents,

Welcome to our K1 blog! This is where you will find out what your children have been up to at school as well as any important messages you will need to know.

The children have had such a wonderful week making new friends and getting to know our new classroom! There are so many things to explore. We have read many books, learned new songs, and we have done some fun activities. Here is a picture of our very first day together.

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We had a chance to go to the library today and were lucky enough to have Ms. Nitasha, our elementary school lower deputy principal, read us a story.

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Please take a peek below at some of the things we have been up to these first three days of school. It has been a great success!

 

Please make sure to send water, a snack and your child’s hat EVERY DAY. Also, please ensure that all of these items are labeled, including lunch containers, with your child’s name. This helps us when things get lost or left behind.

Have a lovely weekend,

Deborah & Mai