What have we been doing?

Sunday October 4th-good morning-who has the heat on?  At least the rain has 
stopped for awhile!  What a fun field trip to the apple orchard we had on 
Thursday!  The children had such a good time choosing the perfect apples for 
our bags and they each tried to lift the very full bags!  We all ate a juicy 
apple and had so much fun trying not to get lost in the corn maize.  We'll be 
doing lots of cooking and eating this week.  Don't worry-we'll definitely 
share our apples with the morning class!

We've learned a song in the morning class "Way Up High In The Apple Tree" and 
our apple project this week will have the words on it so your child can sing 
it for you!  Both classes need lots and lots of work with scissor ad pre-
scissor skills, so we'll be focusing on that quite a bit.  Tearing paper with 
our fingers is a great way to strengthen our fingers.  Letting your child 
practice with scissors, cutting out coupons or something like that is awesome 
as well!

On Thursday, there will be a school-wide lockdown/evacuation drill.  It's 
certainly not a fun part of school, but a necessity.  I keep it as simple as 
possible as far as explanations for the children.  We "lockdown" in case 
there's a "bad storm that could break our windows, or a sick animal that 
wants to get in, or a stranger."  I minimize the "stranger" part.  As far as 
the "evacuation" part, I talk about if something "stinky" spills in the 
school and we need to go somewhere else so it can get cleaned up.  

Please be sure your child is dressed appropriately to walk and be outside for 
a period of time. If you have any other questions about this, feel free to 
ask me.

So, many of you afternoon parents have noticed the arrival craziness, and I'd 
like to now encourage you to drop off your child and leave right away.  We're 
practicing independence and learning to complete our own jobs, and are 
getting really good at it.  So, please "drop and go"!  Thanks!

Enjoy the rest of your relaxing Sunday and have a great week!


Sunday September 27-brrrrrr!  Good morning!  Fall is definitely here!  We had 
another great week of preschool, learning about circles in the morning class 
and exploring a variety of ways to make circles: printing, glueing, and 
building with out wood pieces on the rug.  We even searched in the sand table 
and found circles hiding in there!  Tomorrow is "Red Day" and we'll explore 
red with a collage, fingerpaint, making a book about red and discussing 
many "red" things in our environment.  

Apples are red, and we will begin talking about, and having fun with apple 
projects for the next few weeks.  We'll be learning a fun fingerplay "Way Up 
HIgh in the Apple Tree"--maybe your child will sing it for you!

The afternoon class is going to Brookdale Farm Stand on Thursday.  If you 
don't already have the permission slip, it should be in your child's cubby.  
We'll be picking a large bag of apples for the classroom!  The children are 
soooooo excited!

Tuesday will be our first Library visit.  Preschoolers do NOT borrow books 
from the library.  We will hear a story from Mrs. Charles, and then have an 
opportunity to look at picture books.  We will learn to match the letter on 
the book spine to the correct bin in the bookcase-well, eventually!

Wednesday will be our first whole group social skills and movement day.  Mrs. 
Dana will be introducing our Social Thinking curriculum and we will be 
talking about feelings and thoughts.  This curriculum blends really well with 
our Second Step Social Skills program as well.  We'll probably have fun with 
some familiar (for most of us) yoga poses with Mrs. Anderson.   Please make 
sure your child is wearing appropriate foot wear to exercise in-thanks!

The book order went out on Friday, so those should be coming in 7-10 days or 

This month's calendar packet will include some hand-outs from our Handwriting 
Without Tears curriculum about helping your child practice correct crayon 
grip and also about helping to learn to print his/her name.  If you have any 
questions about these, just ask.

Looking forward to a great week-hopefully the rain will come and go before 

Enjoy your sunny Sunday and have a great week!

Sunday September 20-good morning!  We survived our first full week and I'll 
tell you, everyone was wiped!  

Yellow Day was fun and we really enjoyed fingerpainting in yellow!  The 
afternoon class has been working very hard on holding crayons and scissors 
correctly.  We learned a new song "pick up a crayon" and also a poem about 

This week we will have our first "Wet, Dry, Try" lesson with our slates to 
begin to learn how to make letters and numbers. This is a process of using 
wet sponges to 'erase" the number from the slate, and then repeat with a dry 
piece of paper towel, and then trying ourselves with chalk.  It's a fun way 
to reinforce the process without putting a pencil in our hands (which we're 
definitely not ready to do!).

 We always make sure to start our letters at the top, whether tracing with 
our finger, or building with our wooden pieces, or doing "wet, dry, try".  We 
learn uppercase because they all start at the top. If you are working with 
your child on printing, make sure to remind him/her to start at the top-
thanks!  For more information about this program, check out the link to 
Handwriting Without Tears.

We've also been working very, very hard on counting, and placing numerals in 
order, 1-10, using a numberline to check.  We'll be practicing this all year 
until we can do it independently.  

The morning class has continued to practice the daily routine, look to see 
what's "open" during our center time and try a variety of activities.  We're 
beginning to learn to sort by color, and we're spending a lot of time talking 
about "same" and "different".  

This week we'll begin talking about circles.  We'll make circle collages, 
sort circles, walk in circles and have a chance to paint a large circle at 
the easel.  

We're also going to try making "Mat Man" together with our wooden pieces from 
the Handwriting Without Tears program.  This process reinforces body part 
awareness, counting, taking turns and becoming familiar with the shapes of 
the pieces.  There's also a huge language component as we talk about 
positioning of the pieces: next to, top, bottom, up, down, etc.

I'll be submitting the book order at the end of the week, so if you wish to 
order books this month, make sure to do it by Thursday.  I will be sending 
home a book order (or 2) every month, except December and June (they don't 
come back in time).  

A note will be coming home this week for "Red Day" which will be next Monday 
the 28th, and the afternoon class will be going on a field trip next Thursday 
Oct 1 to Brookdale Farm Stand in Hollis to pick apples.  Be on the look our 
for that permission slip as well!

Enjoy the rest of this beautiful fall Sunday and have a great week!

Sunday September 13-good morning! Well, we survived another crazy hot week-
barely!  Looking forward to more reasonable  weather this week.

Everyone should have picture forms for tomorrow.  If not, see Ruth in the 
office. The morning class is heading down about 8:30 and the afternoon class 
will be going immediately after everyone arrives at 11:30.  I'll let you know 
as soon as I know when "re-take" day will be!

So, the afternoon class has been learning about centers this week.  We are 
learning to stay at our area until a teacher says it's time to change and 
we're looking to see where our friends go to help us remember where we're 
supposed to go!  It's definitely a work in progress!

We met "Mat Man" this week-see the link about our Handwriting Without Tears 
program.  We're going to learn about using wood pieces (big line, little 
line, big curve and little curve) to build "Mat Man" and also to make some 
uppercase letters soon.  First we need to learn how to make "big lines" 
and "little lines".  Then we'll move on to letters

With Mrs. Dana, we're doing some listening to environmental sounds, and 
getting ready for some phonemic awareness lessons that involve listening to 
sounds: like rhyming!

Tomorrow, we'll be sharing our "Weekend News" --that's great practice for 
using complete sentences, recalling events, and trying to organize our 
thoughts in a logical sequence.  

The morning class has also been working very hard to learn the classroom 
routines and participate in activities that are "open".  This too, is a work 
in progress!  Participation at circle time is improving really quickly and 
everyone is learning to be good listeners.  

On Monday mornings we'll be having a group obstacle course before circle with 
Mrs. Anderson. We'll be using scooters, balance beams, tunnels, etc. It's 
tons of fun and is so good for our muscles!  Mrs. Dana will be doing whole 
group language and oral motor activities at circle on Monday and Thursday and 
we'll even do yoga with Mrs. Anderson on Wednesdays!  Circle time is a very 
important part of our day!  And lots of fun too!

So, this Thursday is "Yellow Day" for both classes.  We like to see if we can 
dress up in the color of the day and bring in a little item that can be glued 
onto a class color collage.  If your child isn't at school on a color day, 
you can certainly send the item the next time.  

Finally, I have a blue hooded sweatshirt with a monster on it-anyone?  

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday and have a great week!

Sunday September 6, 2015-good evening, and I hope everyone is enjoying this 
beautiful Labor Day weekend.  

We had a wonderful (although incredibly hot!) first week of school and all 
the children seemed really happy to be there.  Both classes participated in 
school-wide fire drills that were a bit scary, but important.  We know that 
we need a "big noise" for a "big problem."  We also all know that we go 
straight to the flag pole with our class and do not stop to play.

The morning class is going to continue our fun "crayon" theme this week and 
we'll be using crayons, sorting, counting and even making a headband with our 
names in crayons!

The afternoon class will be having lots of fun with school bus activities.  
Wee are going to also make headbands with our names, but ours will be in 
buses! We'll have a fun language lesson with Mrs. Dana to talk about what 
things are "school" things and what things are "not school" things.  Mrs. 
Anderson will be coloring with us and I will be assessing our numeral 

I want to thank everyone who came to the picnic and also to those who brought 
in all the classroom supplies!  They are greatly appreciated! 

A couple of housekeeping items: 1. we're going to try hard to maintain our 
handwashing on arrival policy that we implemented last year.  Once the 
children get used to it, they remember better than I do!  2. Afternoon 
parents bringing children to school, I'm sure you've already noticed that we 
have some children in the classroom between 11 and 11:20, so please wait for 
a staff member to open the door so as to respect their privacy.  3. I have a 
change of clothes for most children and if you haven't brought it in, it's 
really a good idea.  

It's supposed to be another really hot week, so be sure your child has plenty 
to drink in his/her lunchbox and be sure to apply sunscreen or send a hat for 
outside time. 

Be sure to e-mail me with any other questions, and enjoy the rest of your 
long weekend.

Have a great week!

Sunday August 23, 2015-good morning!  The final countdown has begun and I am 
working frantically to get the welcome packets together and out in the mail 
by Tuesday at the very latest. I spent all last week at a great conference on 
Autism and ABA at Antioch College in Keene.  I had a great time and learned a 
lot, but now, of course, I'm a little behind schedule.  You don't even want 
to know what the classroom looks like right now!

The packets will include a "homework" assignment for your family, information 
about the potluck picnic on the 31st, and a bunch of other information. 

School starts on Wednesday September 2nd.  I would love to have all morning 
children at school on Wed and Thurs of that week if possible, to ease the 
transition a bit. Remember, the next week begins on Tues the 8th.

I'll be writing on this page every week, usually on Sunday mornings with 
highlights from the week, special activities, and upcoming events. If you go 
to the "what's coming up in preschool?" page, I have a calendar of important 
days for that month.  "The things we want" page is our classroom wish list.  
There are actually a few things on there now!

I love e-mail, and check it several times a day, so this may be the best way 
to stay in touch with me. 

If, between the website, and the packets, there are still some questions, 
please feel free to email me any time.

I'll be at school this week Tues-Thurs for another workshop, and hopefully 
getting that room pulled together.

I'm looking forward to seeing everyone at the picnic on Monday the 31st!

Enjoy your last full week of vacation!