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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Day 81- Holiday Cheer

I had to apologize to my students today. On Monday we made Christmas cards for Parkridge Medical Center to be given to the patients. I had them on Monday, and today they were gone. I looked all over for those cards and they were gone! POOF! Like magic!

I apologized profusely for not knowing where their cards were, and my students graciously accepted my apology. But that didn't solve the problem of not having cards for the hospital. So, I found a coloring page of a Christmas tree, shrank it down, and we all made new cards!

Luckily they remembered the kind statements from the previous cards. There were lots of "Get well soon" and "Merry Christmas". The last picture my favorite. This Soldier made sure to let the patient know that he cares. He asked how the patient was feeling and told him/ her that he wishes they get better soon. I love how thoughtful my students are!

To get us into the holiday mood, we read a story called A New Improved Santa. I had another story planned, but Mrs. Hughes brought this book to us this morning and said, "I don't know why, but I thought this story seemed perfect for your class."

The story was fun, lighthearted, colorful, and lively. Yep, just like my class! The story is all about how Santa decides that he needs a lifestyle change. He starts exercising, eating properly, dyes his hair and updates his wardrobe. Santa is lookin' good! But in the end he realizes that the children of the world want their 'old' Santa back.

My students loved the story, (Thank-you Mrs. Hughes!) and we reviewed the book by doing our 5-Finger retell. This was the perfect story to get us into the Christmas mood before we worked on our cards.

Math was more working on patterns in numbers. Today was on deciding if a number is odd or even. My students know that if a number has a "partner" the number is even. If the number has no partner, it must be odd. We have gone over this before, and you can see the post {HERE}. This lesson used a 10-Frame and larger numbers to make students think about numbers in a different way. That didn't stop my students from using their fingers they way I taught them! :)

In Social Studies, we looked some more at Kwanzaa. You know, relatively speaking, Kwanzaa is still a 'youngster' in the holiday world. It has not been in existence all that long, but look on the impact it has had on American culture! We watched the video that I had found on the History Channel, and I really liked the point that the video made.

Americans celebrate St. Patrick's Day even if you're not Irish American, Cinco De Mayo even if you're not Mexican American, so why not celebrate Kwanzaa even if you're not African American? We are all American, after all. The 7 Principles of Kwanzaa can be carried out all throughout the year, just like the "Christmas spirit" should be shown throughout the year. We are going to look more into the 7 Principles tomorrow. I've already prepared the chart!

After watching the video, we worked on learning a Swahili song titled See Ya Homba. (probably not really the way it's spelled, but that's they way it's pronounced!) Translated, it is called We Are Marching. We are going to keep working on the song and hopefully it will be ready for our Kwanzaa Celebration on Friday!

Now I haven't really talked about the celebration on Friday because I want it to be a surprise, so,  Parents don't tell! I have some artsy activities planned for tomorrow to help us prepare, but I'm going to keep the kids in the dark as much as I can. I can promise that pictures will be posted as soon as I have them!

Our Daily Brain

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