Discoveries at TKG
“If you’re not prepared to be wrong, you’ll never come up with anything original.”
― Ken Robinson, The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything
Dear Families,

Thank you for another great week.  Your support and passion are the fuel for our growth.  Please be sure to read the section about our upcoming Saturday School Time and our Resource of the Week.

We mixed cognitive and social/emotional learning into real life experiences this week.  We are building our life skills:

  • An earthquake drill inspired book making about what to do when an earthquake comes.   Our books are now featured in our library.
  • Snack time was an opportunity to gain independence and build confidence, one cutie clementine at a time.
  • Counting Collection offered time to erode insecurities about documenting or losing track of our count and propel us to new challenges and new partners
  • Writing Time led us into democratic process: let’s vote.  We added a couple of new amendments to our Bill of Rights, our community’s call for the protection of individual liberties.
Some students are showing a strong understanding in number skills and concepts by testing and using different methods for counting.  We are applying previously learned strategies and being creative with math! Is it confidence in math and counting, is it bigger than math, is it flexible thinking, is it their brain, is it that they are awesome?

We are strengthening our bonds and collaborative skills: how can I make my house bigger? What if I invite another student to incorporate his house into mine?

The writing store continues to be part of our journey.  Michelle offers letter writing courses and expert writing tips but there are plenty of lessons taught by students.

We played some pick-up basketball at TKG! We drew up the court including the key.  We designed a “hoop” without any net.  We had teams, coaches, refs, fun and problem-solving.  We have added a basketball, a soccer ball and a new hoola hoop to our play equipment.  We also played hug tag and teacher tag during PE.  We still need some wood scraps for woodworking, don’t forget!

Some students are needing to release their lighting bolts here and there.  We are working on how to listen to our bodies and how to voice our own needs.  We are working on how to let the noodles out without crashing onto, into or invading other students’ space and projects.  Students will always have the opportunity to release their gushy stuff and we will continue to encourage them to check in with Michelle, Yvette or Parent Teacher to accomplish this. Also, please try to minimize sugary treats in school snacks and lunches.

We made up a vowel song this week (to the BINGO tune):
I can name the vowels and you can name them too.
And you can name them too.

We are turning our vowels into books too.

We have seen an evolution in clean-up.  Thank you for your continued support and for practicing at home.

How was the number line?
Do you feel heard? Do you like Thank Yous?  How does helping others make you feel? (this is from a community conversation initiated by our students)
What did you paint today?
How do you decide who is the kitty? and who is the owner? (deep learning has brought out the kitties in all of us!)
What was your favorite story today?
When do you cry? How do you feel about crying?
What did you Neighbor share?
What are your strategies for being heard in a group conversation?


  • We’re going to do some Whole Brain lessons…what is that? Teachers ask questions, share information, ask students to expand and test, and reflect…do you whole brain at home?
  • We are going to the POST OFFICE! Ask sprouts to think about their list of loved ones (and addresses).  We will be sending letters this week and we plan to send letters directly from the Post Office (additional details below).
  • We are transitioning from an Illustration focus to a Reading focus (still incorporating illustration).  Keep reading with your sprouts.  Keep encouraging their reading talents, wherever they are in their own development.
  • Please try to talk up, wish books.

Your feedback and questions are encouraged:
CLASSROOM – Yvette Fenton
CURRICULUM – Lena Garcia Kaufman

Tending the Garden

Field Trip!
Our next field trip is scheduled for Friday October 26th at 10:00am.  We will meet in the lobby of the Post Office.   At the end of the tour, we may have the opportunity to see mail trucks and mail our own letters.  Come prepared with correct addresses and letters.  Please contact Renee with any questions.

Classroom Supplies
We need painter’s tape, wood scraps and white construction paper.  Please bring on Tuesday.

October Park
Please pack $1 per sprout for admission costs and don’t forget to sunscreen!  See you Monday!

Our Flickr Stream features even more photos from this week!
The 5 Guiding Principals at TKG
  • CONSTRUCTIVISM, as teachers and parents, we provide the trellis on which students will expand their existing knowledge
  • WHOLE CHILD, cognitive, physical and social/emotional are inseparable
  • BRAIN FUNCTION & DEVELOPMENT, students are sensory learners, we will honor each student’s unique developmental map
  • CAPACITY BUILDING, supporting the development of creative thinkers who are encouraged to solve problems
  • CO-OPERATIVE LEARNING, small groups, low ratios, mixed ages and generations

We love our Parent Teachers…


Monday – ME & MG
Tuesday – RD
Wednesday – NL
Thursday – TV

Focus for the coming week: What is Documentation? Please watch this short video on “Documentation: Transforming Our Perspective”

In support of You: Work out back kinks – Sit on a chair with knees bent, feet flat on the floor, and bend forward at the hips. Bend arms behind you, palms facing away from you, and make fists. Knead circles into your lower back on either side of your spine. Continue, working your way up, for a minute or more. Read more…

FREE ONLINE COURSE – Helping Your Child Learn to Regulate Emotions with Patty Wipfler and Dr. Laura Markham.  Register here.

The Seeds (Core Standards)

We are creating intention around these standards:

RF.1.1a (first grade) Recognize the distinguishing features of a sentence (e.g., fi rst word, capitalization, ending punctuation).

K.1c (first grade) Understand that words are separated by spaces in print.

1.7. (first grade) Use illustrations and details in a story to describe its characters, setting, or events.

2.7. (second grade) Use information gained from the illustrations and words in print or digital text to demonstrate understanding of its characters, setting, or plot.


6.6 Attend to Precision. Communicate precisely to others. Give carefully formulated explanations to each other. Tachers focus on clarity and accuracy of process and outcome in problem solving.


K. Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to compose informative/explanatory texts in which they name what they are writing about and supply some information about the topic.

1.2. Write informative/explanatory texts in which they name a topic, supply some facts about the topic, and provide some sense of closure.


Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.

a. Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions (e.g., listening to others and taking turns speaking about the topics and texts under discussion).

b. Continue a conversation through multiple exchanges

5. Add drawings or other visual displays to descriptions when appropriate to clarify ideas, thoughts, and feelings.

(grade 2) Tools and machines are used to apply pushes and pulls (forces) to make things move.


Have you signed up for our FARM FRESH TO YOU delivery? Knowing Garden receives a donation from FFTY for every sign up. Click here to sign up (use PROMOTIONAL CODE #6272)!

From the TKG Office

Tending the soil…

  • Tuition is DUE on November 1st.  
  • Community Workshop Tuesday November 7th A New Parent Info Night + Blending ECHO Parenting and Hand In Hand with Kathy Gordon – sign up is available here.  This is not a required meeting for TKG families.  The first hour will be Info Night and the second hour will be workshop (hope this helps you plan!)
  • FUNdraiser Opportunity We will have another BOOK SALE on Saturday, November 10th beginning at 8:30am (Our Oct date has been postponed).  We will need table loading assistance, morning of loading/unloading and works shifts.  Please contact Seth Kaufman to volunteer.  All proceeds will be shared by all participating families.

Thank you Families!  Admin Questions, please email


Please shop our Amazon store for dress up plans, school supplies and Holiday Gift Lists!  Access here…
Resource Of The Week

Teaching Our Children to Write, Read, & Spell
by Susan R. Johnson, MD, FAAP

HOW TO SUPPORT a child’s learning

  • serve healthy foods rich in protein, good quality fats (especially omega-3 fatty acids), and fresh fruits and vegetables
  • eliminate partially-hydrogenated oils and trans fats
  • Adequate sleep will increase the percentage of rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. This encourages consolidation of the previous day’s learning
  • Limit screen time on school nights (television, videos, and computer games), if not eliminating it completely, will keep the mind free to do its own imagining and not stress it with violent images and rapid sequences of pictures that the brain can not fully process
  • Keep regular rhythms and routines in eating and sleeping to promote a more relaxed nervous system for learning


The Knowing Garden · 4733 Torrance Blvd · Box 324 · Torrance, CA 90503

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