Prep | Kindergarten News
As we continue to engage in a range of learning experiences to develop our social skills, we are exploring ways to solve problems and resolve conflict. We explore self-help strategies to empower the boys to resolve conflicts with increasing independence and confidence. Many boys are aware of the STOP, NO, GO TELL strategy and we observe it being used successfully.
We encourage the boys to think
- What is the problem?
- What can I do about it?
- Which is the best idea for me to try?
- How well did my idea work?
- How was I feeling?
- What could I do next time?
We encourage you to continue the conversation with your son at home about how they deal with conflict and the strategies that they implement. The boys will continue to explore social skills through a variety of contexts.
Unit of Inquiry
There was a buzz in the air as Mrs Hitz-Morton wheeled a trolley of boxes into the Kindergarten rooms. Wonderings filled the room. “What is inside?” “Who are they from?” “Why is there a label on the box?” What does the label say?” “It says, Stories for Kindy!”
As part of our inquiry into How We Express Ourselves, the boys were encouraged to share their thinking of the form of stories. What is a story? Many responses focused on books. Fun books, information books and superhero books.
We wonder what other forms of stories we will start to discover……
In STEAM boys will be using their design thinking skills to design and make a puppet theatre and puppets. They will then use these to bring stories to life through performance. Boys will choose what ‘form’ their puppet will take – sock, spoon, paddle pop sticks. Giving students choice helps develop creative thinking skills as they use their imagination to transform everyday objects.
What is a pattern? What isn’t a pattern? Where can we find them in the environment? These are all big questions that students in kindergarten have been exploring over the last two weeks. Understanding patterns helps children prepare for complex number concepts and mathematical operations. Students have been challenging themselves to explore patterns in many contexts. From shapes, colours, sounds and numbers, our budding mathematicians are becoming pattern experts!
Continuing conversations about patterns at home will assist your sons in transferring this knowledge and applying it more broadly. Making patterns with Lego, beads, craft and colours during play at home will assist your sons with their mathematical understanding while also developing their fine motor skills.
Reading is of key importance for all students, particularly in kindergarten as boys are establishing a firm understanding of how words and language work. During the day the boys are exposed to a range of different quality literature that serves many purposes. This regular engagement and exposure are supported by the learning that occurs in our literacy program (Initial-Lit). During literacy, the boys have been exploring rhyme and syllables through engaging games and activities, they have begun noticing rhyme in the books we read and are able to identify syllables in different words. In the coming weeks the students will start to explore onset and rime whilst being introduced to the first phonic set (m, s, t and a), which will support their reading journey.
To support the boys in English, we encourage the parents to read regularly with their son and try a few of the below strategies when reading with their son throughout the week:
- Reflect: what part of the book or story did you really enjoy (and why)? What part didn’t you enjoy (and why)? How did this book make you feel?
- Ask why questions: why did the author write the book this way, why did this happen, why did the illustrator create the image in that way?
- Re-tell after reading the book, ask your son to tell you about the characters in the book, the storyline and the sequence of events in the book.
- Word work: look for interesting words in the book and think about what that word might mean, think about why the author used different words (e.g. why did they say pouring instead of raining?)
- Book features: talk about who the author and illustrator are, look at for capital letters at the start of sentences and full stops at the end of sentences. Talk about concepts of print – reading right to left, the cover of the book etc.
- Change the ending: read the start of the story and then pause. Ask your son to make an alternative ending for the story.
- Book walk: before reading the book, flip through the pages and look at the pictures. Encourage your son to make predictions about what might happen in the story and the characters.
- Make connections: encourage your son to think of connections between the book and their own life (experiences, interests, other books).
In Music, Kindergarten is Inquiring into Sharing the Planet and they have been learning songs about animals. They have taken their inquiry further by developing their rhythmic and melodic skills by placing the Solfa and rhythms into their body as well as playing the songs using tuned percussion instruments such as the Boomwhackers. The boys have also worked on their music notation and aural skills as they are now able to identify a rhythm or three note melody and write the notes on whiteboards.
Internet Safety Week
As part of Internet Safety Week boys have discussed how we can stay safe using our iPads at school. If you have not yet discussed this at home a great place to start is https://www.esafety.gov.au/parents/children-under-5. This site has online safety guidance and family tech agreements similar to the ICT agreement you will have received from school. How to stay safe whilst using a device forms part of the GROWTH programme and will be taught during the year.
In considering what to write about this week, I have made a conscious decision to look…
There have been no changes since I last wrote about our plans for Week 4 and 5, but I would like to request your ongoing assistance in reinforcing to your sons the current public health messages.
I am excited to finally be welcoming students back to school over the next two weeks….