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Reveling in Fall

"Look at those geese!" A huge, honking cacophony filled the sky. We watched them fly overhead and wished them a good journey south. Immediately a group of kids launched into discussions about the "v" shape, while others started talking about migration. I was tickled that their lunch conversations had taken such a science tack. With the mild weather this past week, we were outside for snack, lunch, recess, adventure walk, chemistry experiments, and some of our academic lessons.

Theresa's 3rd-5th Graders

We hosted our first publishing party of the year. Our PK-2nd graders shared their "All About Me" books while the 3rd-5th graders shared fiction pieces they had been working of for weeks. It was wonderful to have a chance to share all of the great writing going on all over the school, and we want to thank all our friends and families for such great feedback on our writing. Older kids read to younger kids, and it was a fun chance to reflect on how our students grow as writers over the years.

One of the many skills that we try to build in our students is an awareness of what they need to be productive. Do they need to take notes as someone is talking in order to remember what was said? Do they need quiet? Does it help them to have a blank wall or a window? To this end, I talked to the children about grown-up offices, where everyone has a cubicle to work in, and where people decorate their cubicles to make them comfortable and beautiful. The kids really loved it, and now, everyone wants a divider between themselves and the people near them. They also want to bring in decorations from home to make their offices more comfortable. If you have any big expanses of cardboard, please send them in! Also, if your child has a picture or a (very small) plant that they want to bring in, please let them.

Tracy's PK-2nd Graders

We were so excited to welcome our newest teacher, Morgan. The children were happy for her help, to listen to her stories and songs, and to get to know her a little better.

We have been reading lots of stories about fall, seasonal changes, and pumpkins these past two weeks. Everyone created a jack-o-lantern, and many children told or wrote stories about their pumpkin. Depending on the age and ability of our writers, we are working on forming a few letters, hearing the beginning and ending sound in a work, or figuring out what makes a sentences and adding appropriate punctuation. We try to share our writing regularly and ask clarifying questions when we don't understand something someone else wrote.

Our Theme: Chemistry

We mixed two liquids (water and food coloring) to demonstrated how molecules move at different temperatures. We also experimented with some candy this week to learn more about chromatography. Warm water made our colors move faster than cold water. M&M's melted faster than Skittles. You'll have to ask your scientists for their other observations about which colors traveled the furthest on our paper towels and coffee filters.

This next week promises to be rainy, but we'll see if we can't figure out some different ways to revel in the season.


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