Friday, October 3, 2014

Grimm October 3rd, 2014

PK-1 Principal/Director of Teaching & Learning

Sara Grimm

Twitter:  saramarleygrimm

SKYPE:  saramarleygrimm

Happy Homecoming Week

What an amazing week in the elementary. We had fun joining in with the JH and High School as they celebrated Homecoming Week. Lots of interesting characters were visible in our hallways & classrooms.

Program Wide Positive Behavior Interventions

The Howard-Winneshiek district preschool program is starting the process of developing and implementing Program Wide Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PW-PBIS). This will be similar to the School Wide PBIS program at the elementary school. Mrs. Merkel, Mrs. Marr, and I attended two days of training in Calmar earlier this week as part of a NE Iowa Cadre. Our district leadership team had the opportunity to focus on the needs of our district as we look to incorporate PW-PBIS into our early childhood program. Collaborations at the Cadre trainings included making connections with AEA, Head Start, and teachers and administrators from neighboring districts. The Howard-Winneshiek leadership team will begin the implementation process at the local level and meet with the Cadre again in December to share progress. 

Transitional Kindergarten... A new season has arrived. Students have been sharing what they know about Fall. Many times children interchange seasons. We will be highlighting some of the common signs of Fall (leaves, pumpkins, and harvest along with other areas of student interest).
This week the preschoolers asked and solved a very important question..."How do little crickets make such a loud sound?" After a bit of researching, reading, and observing, the preschoolers discovered that crickets rub their wings together to make sound. Their classroom pet crickets have been fun to observe and create a soothing sound during rest time! They also celebrated Johnny Appleseed’s birthday by making apple pie. The preschoolers stayed busy cutting up apples and rolling out the piecrust! Their apple pie was tasty! In celebration of Johnny’s birthday, they created a “cooking pot” for their heads and planted grass-seed around the playground.
In Elma the preschool started something new during morning centers. They call it Buddy Centers, and each day the students are paired up with someone different. They go to two different centers for 10 minutes each, and do different activities at those centers with their buddy. The students worked on patterning and sorting. They also worked on making a class book using the pictures of shapes and colors the students took outside last week.
Last week Kindergarten students began a unit entitled Helping Students Protect the Environment and Live Well. The students learned that everything comes from the earth. The students also learned how important it is to protect our earth. The students used recyclable materials to make art projects, created a picture collage on their iPad of recyclable items, illustrated a small poster about protecting their environment, illustrated and created a "gift of nothing", and repurposed t-shirts into cloth bags.

First Grade 
Initial sound "Go Fish" in Cadet Time
Excitement grew as 1st grade started their first science unit on "Investigating Water". Students have learned what a property is. As a class they brainstormed a list of properties of water. They were then able to work in small groups to answer questions about water. 
1. Does water have a color?
2. Does water have a smell?
3. How does water feel?
4. What happens to water when you stir it?
5. What happens to water when you pour it?
6. Which of your science tools can you use to scoop or move water?
7. What happens to water when you blow IN it?
8. What happens to water when you blow ON it?

They also learned about being safe in science. Although we know this liquid is water, we CANNOT consume it as it is "science water".

Part two of their science activity was learning about water in the form of a drop. They tried to split a single drop of water in half and found that was quite difficult. They observed what happened when two drops of water were touching. The two drops of water combined together into one big drop! 

Students have also begun using Kid Blog as a method of Working on Writing and communicating information with their peers via technology. They are using digital tools to produce and publish their writing!! Their Kid Blog will be opened up to parents so they can communicate with the class and comment on their posts throughout the school year! 

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