Monday, 15 January 2018

Happy New Year! First Week Back!

Hello Kindergarten families.

Let me start off by saying Happy New Year.  I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays and I hope your children enjoy the first week back at school.  I was personally very excited to get back to work.  I also want to thank everyone once again for all the lovely gifts and the warm welcome I have received since I have arrived.

I'll start off will a little introduction.  My name is Skyler Fellner and I am from Weyburn, Saskatchewan (only 1 hour away).  I have really adapted to the city life now and hope to continue my future in Regina.  I convocated last summer so this is the very first year of my teaching career.  I have spent a large amount of time volunteering in Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten rooms throughout my university career, so getting to fill in for this job was a dream.  I started off the year as a substitute and I even got to substitute in Ms. Stuart's class early on in the year.  I never forgot my experience working with both groups of Kindergartens.  I was lucky enough to receive my first temporary contract in the middle of October. It was halftime so I only spent afternoons with the students.  I got to spend 6 weeks with a wonderful group of grade 2's at Coronation Park.  Next, I received a phone call with an offer of a full time classroom.  Although it was sad to leave my previous class, the offer of a Kindergarten classroom full time was too much to pass up.  What made it even better was knowing the kids beforehand and getting to see them again.  The rest is history. It has been a wonderful 2 months with the students and I look forward to spending more time teaching all of them.

Last week was my first real taste of flying solo (With the assistance of Ms. D and other Mr. F).  It has been amazing getting to plan my very own centers and lessons.  The mixture of winter and science has given me a lot to work with for the month of January.  I hope everyone has enjoyed all of the new stuff in the classroom.  The highlight was introducing these little guys.

These are the Penguin Pals and they have added a lot of extra fun in the classroom.  Every day we have two special helpers in the classroom.  In addition to being line leaders and helping me in the classroom, the students now receive either Paul or Patti.  They get to sit with them on the carpet, play with them during explore, and hang out with them at the tables.  My helpers get to spend the entire day with them, but only if they show me the best behavior and truly special helpers.  If they are not showing positive behavior then they lose their Penguin Pal (that has yet to happen).  Piper the last Penguin Pal, usually is hanging out with me.  But, I keep my eye out for positive behavior from the rest of the students and when I see it from a student I usually reward them with Piper.  It has been great adding this reward system and having some extra friends in the classroom.

Thank you for everything so far, and I look forward to getting to know everyone even more during my time here.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me via email, message, or even calling the school.

- Mr. F

Monday, 25 December 2017

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Wishes for a Joyful New Year!

I would like to express a sincere Thank You to all the Kindergarten families for the amazing gifts and cards you so graciously sent over the past week. You are so generous and the presents were not necessary, but very much appreciated. It is an absolute pleasure to wake up each day and get to spend time with your fabulous children. I hope everyone has a safe holiday season.

Lots of Love: Ms. S.

Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Animals in Winter Wrap-Up (KA & KB)

Hello Families,

The last three weeks since Celebration of Learning have gone by so fast! Since taking over the classroom, I have had nothing but wonderful moments with your kiddos and felt I have given them some great learning experiences. We have had so much fun learning about Animals in Winter! Their positive growth and newfound knowledge makes me very proud to be their teacher.
As you have probably noticed on Seesaw and from previous blog posts, the kiddos spent the last three weeks learning about hibernation, migration, and adaptation. They also learned about the Medicine Wheel and what this First Nation’s symbol represents. My goal for the kiddos was for them to understand the different ways that animals survive in the winter and identify and explain the components of the Medicine Wheel.  They worked hard learning about bears, torpor, and hibernation. They loved being “pelicans” flying to Mexico to find food and a warm home for the winter. And they enjoyed spending two afternoons creating a piece of art to represent white rabbits in the snow. To tie everything together, the kiddos each did their own presentation on what they had learned. They went through the Medicine Wheel and all the ways that animals survive in winter using the activities we did together in class. Over the last couple days I have been uploading their video presentations to Seesaw and as you can see… they did fabulous!

When we learned about adaptation, we read the story Snow Rabbit, Spring Rabbit by Il Sung Na. The kiddos learned that rabbits and many other animals in Saskatchewan change colors and grow thicker coats in the winter. We compared lots of pictures of foxes, lynx, rabbits, and coyotes in the summer and in the winter and noticed many differences in their coats. They found out that rabbits change from brown to white in the winter (camouflage) to stay safe from predators. Here are a few snaps of the kiddos creating their winter rabbit art. I love the finished products!

When the kiddos finished up making their bears in torpor, I created a bulletin board outside our classroom to show off how cute they turned out! 

As my time at Henry Braun comes to a close next week, I am feeling very grateful to have had such a great group of kiddos to spend my internship with. This week, Mr. F has started to teach and I am slowly stepping down for him to take over. The last four months have been an absolute pleasure for me getting to know all of the sweet little people in kindergarten. They are all so kind, eager, and inspiring. Each one of them has their own special personality that has made me laugh myself to tears, warmed my heart, and given me a glimpse into how awesome our future will be with these kiddos leading the way. I will undoubtedly have nothing but wonderful memories being their teacher.

All my best,
Miss Maier

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

Outdoor Education Presentation (KA & KB)

We started out the week by welcoming some teachers from Outdoor Education who came and gave a presentation on Animals in Winter. Outdoor Education came equip with 14 different animals that our kiddos got to check out and ask questions about how they survive the winter. As soon as the presenter asked if anyone knew what the three ways were that animals survive in the winter, everyone’s hand shot up! I was quite proud of the kiddos, because they all knew; “Animals hibernate, migrate, or adapt!” 

The presenter went through the animals one at a time and explained what each one does in the winter. The kiddos were pretty excited to see these real animals up close. Thus far, we have been having discussions about these animals, and viewing pictures in books and on the projector- but today they were able to put their learning into context! It was a pretty cool “teacher moment” when the kiddos could look at the big snowshoe hare and explain why it’s coat is white. Or point at the mallard duck and explain that it migrates somewhere warmer for the winter because the ponds are frozen here and they can’t find enough food.

At the end of the presentation, the kiddos got the opportunity to “pet” all of the animals and see how nice and thick those winter coats really are!



Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Hibernation and Migration (KA & KB)

The kiddos have been doing lots of learning about what animals do in winter! They are always so engaged and we have learned many interesting facts. So far, we have covered hibernation and migration, and just started learning about adaptation. 

We learned that hibernation is when animals store up body fat and then go into a long, deep sleep for the winter. Their body temperature drops, and their heartbeat and breathing slow down. We know that groundhogs, bats, bees, snakes, frogs, and skunks all hibernate. And found out that bears are not true hibernators and go into something known as “torpor” where they sleep and wake periodically all winter. The kiddos made some fantastic bears (as seen on Seesaw) to go with our story Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson.  

Next, we learned about migration. We know that this is when animals start to feel the seasons changing and move to a different location for the winter. We learned that caribou, butterflies, and many birds are migrators. After going through pictures of birds we see here in Saskatchewan that migrate- we decided to be pelicans and role play! We learned that pelicans migrate to Mexico and thought that was a pretty good idea. We started in the movement room and pretended to shiver. We could tell the seasons were changing. We pretended to look around for food but the ponds were freezing and we couldn’t find any fish or frogs to eat; so we decided to form a “V” just like the ones that birds fly in. We flapped our wings like birds and pretended to migrate as we skipped around the movement room. The “pelicans” were getting visibly tired so we “flew” back to our classroom. I told them we had made it to Mexico where it was warm and where we’d find food! The “pelicans” looked around the room to find bags of fishy crackers! They then sat down and ate their well-deserved snack! 


Stay tuned to hear about our adventures in learning about adaptation!