Last Friday morning there was much excitement on campus as we kicked off our learning buddy program for the year! Learning buddies are a purposeful way to encourage cross-grade friendships, help students develop a sense of responsibility and practice mentorship, and make learning fun!
During the first meeting, the buddies took time to get to know each other and did some reading together.
The older buddies marvelously modeled good reading behaviors by reading with expression and fluency for their younger buddies. Some of the older buddies were also honored to listen to their younger buddies read too.
The younger buddies thoroughly enjoyed getting to know their learning buddies, and are already asking when they get to meet with their buddies again!
The Hoot Owls have been talking about the differences between home and school. They read the books Home by Carson Ellis and The House that Jill Built by Phyllis Root. They then reviewed the shapes square, rectangle and triangle, and math terms like small, medium and large, and then talked about how they could use the shapes and sizes to construct an image of a house.
Some Hoot Owls made realistic houses while others chose to use their imagination and create a pretend house. Students who are getting the hang of writing chose to write either the word “house” or “home” on their artwork. Next students were asked, “Who lives in your house?” This led many Hoot Owls to draw their families inside their homes.
This week, the Hoot Owls learned about the Mid-Autumn Festival, or Moon Festival, that is celebrated in East and Southeast Asia to mark the end of the autumn harvest. The students read the book Thanking the Moon by Grace Lin, and learned how Maggie, one of the Pre-K teachers, celebrates the festival with her family. Maggie shared that this Saturday evening, September 10th, she will have a special dinner with her family and then go out to view the moon at night. During the viewing, her family will eat fruits and mooncakes and thank the moon for a bountiful harvest.
The Hoot Owls got to try their hand at making play-dough mooncakes using real mooncake presses. They were delighted at the beautiful “mooncakes” they created!
Thank you, Maggie, for sharing your family tradition with the Hoot Owls.
This morning, all Saklan Preschool – fifth grade students participated in Moving Up Day. The students and teachers alike were buzzing with excitement!
This annual tradition allowed the students to get a snapshot of what next year will hold. The teachers planned special activities that highlighted their grade level and enjoyed getting to know their rising students a little better. Morning meeting activities, questions, stories, classroom scavenger hunts, and enthusiasm filled the classrooms! If your child “moved up” today, please ask them all about it. They will likely have something enthusiastic to share!
At the end of April, the Owlets watched this video to learn that biologists are scientists who study animals, plants, and other kinds of life. During the month of May, the Owlets have had many opportunities to be biologists. Recently, they talked about characteristics of different animal classes, including reptiles, mammals, fish, and birds.
Last week, a guest expert, Ms. Emily from Wildcare, visited the Owlets and Hoot Owls to teach them all about mammals! The students enjoyed seeing the real taxidermy animals she brought, as well as a real whale tooth and some deer antlers!
The Owlets became scientists in April! The class visited Ms. O in her lab every Thursday during the month. The Owlets learned words like observation and hypothesis. Ms. O let the Owlets experiment with mixing different liquids to cause chemical reactions, like color changes, temperature changes, and state changes.
After learning about chemical reactions, Ms. Jessica led the Owlets and Hoot Owls in a classic experiment mixing Mentos candy with soda. Many of the students predicted what would happen, and many of them wanted to try mixing the candy with other liquids too!
The Owlets asked lots of great questions and came up with many ideas for more science experiments!
On Thursday, March 17th, many of our students noticed signs of mischievous leprechauns having visited campus overnight. Yarn wrapped around toys, messages left on classroom white boards and gold coins in classrooms were some of the clues the leprechauns left!
Knowing they might be coming, the Kindergarteners built a trap for the leprechauns. While there were no leprechauns in the trap in the morning, the trap definitely looked different on Thursday morning than when the students had built it on Wednesday!
Owlets, Hoot Owls, and Kindergarteners set out on a scavenger hunt on their play yard, looking for signs of leprechauns there too! Students searched for:
Pots of Gold
Four Leaf Clovers
Green Top Hats
Images of Leprechauns
The students were very successful in finding items left behind by the leprechauns!
Recently, Ms. Maggie and the Hoot Owls worked on creating some really unique houses! Using tape and craft sticks, the Hoot Owls constructed square, rectangular and even triangular-shaped houses. The features of the houses varied during this open-ended project, with some students choosing to add doors and windows and others adding bridges! Most of the Hoot Owls plan to use their houses as bird houses.
This fun activity allowed the Hoot Owls to work on their fine motor skills, shape recognition and of course creativity and design!
Saklan celebrated the 100th day of the 2021-2022 school year on Thursday, February 10th. To mark the occasion, the Hoot Owls made “100” crowns, participated in several counting activities and had a celebratory lunch.
The Kindergartners celebrated the 100th day of school by rotating through a series of activities focusing on the number 100. Students had the opportunity to build with 100 cups, match numbers 1 – 100 on the bottom of kisses to a hundreds chart, hear the story 100th Day Worries by Margery Cuyler, draw themselves when they are 100 years old, and make a necklace with 100 loops on it.
To get the 100th day started, the first graders each created a poster that contained 100 of something of their choosing. The posters were very unique and creative!
During the school day, the first graders commemorated the day by answering writing prompts such as, “What would you do with 100 dollars?” and “What would you do if you were 100 years old?” They practiced counting to 100 by 10s, drew 100 decorations on cupcake drawings, made necklaces using 100 circular cereal pieces and yarn and read The 100th Day of School by Angela Shelf Medearis.
The students had a wonderful day celebrating the 100th day of school and noting that they are now 100 days smarter.
The Hoot Owls read the book Have You Filled a Bucket Today? A Guide to Daily Happiness for Kids by Carol McCloud. The book teaches that everyone carries around an imaginary bucket. When you do kind things for someone your bucket gets filled and so does the other person’s bucket!
The Hoot Owls created a class bucket/jar to fill with kind things that are done throughout the week. On Fridays they read aloud all the kind things that happened that week!