FROM UNDER OUR BIG TREE: Week 3 Year 2 (7 to 9 Class)

Week 3 Documentation & Info – 7 to 9 Class

All Together - 7 to 9 Class
“Life isn’t finding shelter in the storm. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.”
― Sherrilyn Kenyon, Acheron
HoooWeee to you!Our week started with a lovely day at the park, cooled by ocean breezes and excited by our first M.E.A.P.S. experience. The week was filled with diverse opportunities to nurture our multiple intelligences: musical–rhythmic, visual–spatial, verbal–linguistic, logical–mathematical, bodily–kinesthetic, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalistic.  We welcomed our Parent Teachers and began the process of reconnecting with our parent community.  Culminating with a special day of being together under the oak trees with the WilderSkills brothers, it was a great Week 3.Helpful to Note:

  • This Monday, Field Day is at the park from 9 to 2pm. Forecast for Monday is: Partly Cloudy; 74°F Please put sunscreen on before school. Community Snack schedule begins.
  • This Tuesday is TKG Picture Day.  Our talented Alice plans to photo everyone including Board Members and Teachers!  Photos are not required – just let Alice know (students and parents).
  • This Saturday: Yard Sale at Stickley’s/3603 West 152nd Street, Lawndale (Fundraiser Opportunity).  Set up time 7:30am. Please bring your own change. Clean up all your items by 1:00pm.  Contact Lori with ?s.
Outdoor Learning
In my group, students from both classes interacted with the book I’m The Biggest Thing In The Ocean, then thought about measurement by estimating and using a non-standard unit of measurement to collaboratively brainstorm how long they thought a giant squid would be.The estimates ranged from 16 feet to 200 feet. Students used chalk to mark their theories in real-life size and we wondered together why different people got different measurements- was it maybe because there were different sized feet? Next time, we will talk about standard methods of measurement, like a centimeter and a foot, and the use of a tool like a ruler or a tape measure.
Home-based Learning Suggestion:  if your child was in this MEAPS group, do some investigating as to how long an actual giant squid can get. Talk about what M.E.A.P.S. stands for and discuss your values in support of the any or all of the disciplines.Math
During Math we intentionally worked on the following skills and habits:

  • Algebraic equations
  • Spatial Intelligence (an area in the theory of multiple intelligences that deals with spatial judgment and the ability to visualize with the mind’s eye)
  • Counting by 10s starting at different numbers
  • Using a math resource (a hundreds chart)
We capitalized on our multi-age, multi-level classroom this week be focusing on student interest and need. Some students continued to focus on counting collections, solidifying their ability to count by 5’s or 10’s and their written number directionality. Other students worked on algebraic concepts of variables, equations and values. In addition, our spatial reasoning games like FITS (a tetris-like board game) and ColorCode challenged students to manipulate objects while being strategic in their thinking. Next week, we will start our math curriculum focusing on addition using a number line.
Home-based Learning: ask your child what they are enjoying about Math and what they would like to explore (please send me tidbits about your discussion!).  Practice measuring with non-standard units of measurement – measurement units that are not commonly accepted as standard but are applied uniformly when measuring (e.g., paperclips, pencils, a tennis shoe, and cubes).
Community Field Trip
Shelter, water, fire, food…that’s the sacred order dude! That was the chant, as well as a joyful “hoo-wee” we learned at our informative, interactive fieldtrip on Friday. What a special day it was, being together under the oak trees, soaking in so much information and getting to try shelter making and fire making! Our guides, Michael and Daniel were incredible to work with and we look forward to putting what they taught us into action…well maybe just the shelter part at Hess park!
Home-based Learning: Collect pinecones, cat tail, grass and acorns (or maybe try a recipe with acorn meal) and try to extract the nourishment!Learning Through Art (from Elle)
This week, we collaborated on four different watercolor techniques that students used in an exploration experience. Focusing more on process than on product, students were able to delve into their creativity, exploring and practicing techniques that will be used in future projects and support their developing relationship with visual art. The four techniques are:
  • wet-on-wet
  • salt effect
  • masking
  • blowing using a straw
We also focused on developing and honing professional studio habits like respecting materials and tools, and the proper clean up of the work station. It was quite exciting for me to see our sprouts’ artistic process reveal itself!
Home-based Learning: Create a mini-art studio at home, in collaboration with your sprout. Offer watercolors, painting, chalk – whatever they are interested in coloring right now!
Meeting discussions/ Social Emotional:
Taking care of our classroom and being of service to our classroom family has been a central theme over these last 3 weeks. Every morning, the students start out the day with 10 minutes devoted to working with a partner to care for an element of our classroom. They have been picking their partner’s name out of a jar and the job to focus on for the week so that all students are having an opportunity to become connected with each other. The jobs are:
  1. Spa Water- fruits and sweet herbs are chopped by the children and added to filtered water that is available all day for children and adults to quench their thirst and stay hydrated
  2. Germ Patrol- glasses are washed daily for everyone to enjoy the spa water and tables are cleaned with a citrus based non-toxic cleaner
  3. Tool Maintenance- our pencils are sharpened and our tables are cleaned at the beginning of the day and after lunch
  4. Plant love-  all the plants inside and out are watered either with small watering spouts or the hose
I usually put on some fun music to help us keep track of the time and it is so energizing to be moving as a busy collective, grooving along to music, and energetically settling into being in the room with each other. I have found myself just standing still at times, feeling the sweet vibrations of collaboration and ownership.
Home-based Learning: ask your child which job they have enjoyed most so far and why.  Give them opportunities to help in your home.Emerging Interests
Thanks to Hayden, Anna and Bennett who created our class schedule for Weekends with Smores.  This week you will receive an e-mail with those dates. Please check-in with Renee, our pet care parent, who can help facilitate any changes you may need to make.Looking forward to our learning collaborations to come!

Lena Garcia, School Builder/7 to 9 Classroom
Elle Schwartz, Co-Teacher, 7 to 9 Classroom
Erin Levin, 7 to 9 Room Parent
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TKG Info

Tending the Garden

***November Field Trip, 11/7
Our focus for the November field trip will be Community Service. Please contact Jennifer Ceci with names of organization whose values/mission are aligned with TKG.  We are exploring ideas with St.Andrew’s and have some ideas brewing…thanks for taking the time.***Oct Monthly Dance Party – This Friday
Rock the Courtyard on Friday! Submit your playlist requests, here.***TKG Book Club – Wed Oct 29th, 7.00pm
Get started on reading Daring Greatly by Brene Brown. Our focus will be the chapter titled: Whole-hearted Parenting.  Buy the book at the TKG Marketplace (click Reading List tab)

TKG Principals
  • CONSTRUCTIVISM, as teachers and parents, we provide the trellis on which students will build on their existing knowledge
  • WHOLE CHILD, cognitive, physical and social/emotional are inseparable
  • BRAIN SCIENCE, students are sensory learners, we honor each student’s unique developmental map
  • CAPACITY BUILDING, nurturing creative thinkers who are encouraged to solve problems that serve our community
  • COOPERATIVE LEARNING, small groups, low ratios, mixed ages and generations
Parent Teacher Info

Parent/Teacher Toolbox

PT Schedule for the week*

*Names in parentheses are working on-campus, outside the classroom on that day.

Please contact Trish Valdez with any questions related to PTs and scheduling, as well as any changes. Download the most current PT Calendar, here.

PT RESOURCE: Not Enough Hours In The Day? We All Feel A Little ‘Overwhelmed’
“Sometimes there just isn’t enough time to get it all done. Washington Post journalist Brigid Schulte has certainly felt that way. “I was working all the time and yet never very good at what I was doing,” she tells NPR’s David Greene. ” … I felt all this pressure that I was a working mom and so I was always so guilty, and I didn’t want to ruin their childhood. So I was up at 2 in the morning to bake cupcakes for the Valentine’s party.”As a parent teacher, you have committed to spending time nurturing our community.  Trust that the time you give us is valuable and your life experience is meaningful – especially to our children.  Dads, this may seem a little gender specific but we want to acknowledge that you too have overwhelm and we want all our PTs to take a few minutes to love what you do accomplish in a day…Read about Brigid, here.
Admin Announcements

From the TKG Office

  • TUITION IS DUE on Oct 1st
  • AMAZON Reports will be available on Oct 1st – please check by Oct 10th.
  • OFFICE HOURS 10/3, 10-12 (after dance party) @ Green Roast Coffee

Thank you Families!  Contact Trish or Monica with any questions or to schedule meeting time.

The Four Agreements
1. Be Impeccable with your Word
2. Don’t Take Anything Personally
3. Don’t Make Assumptions
4. Always Do Your Best

Resource Of The Week – Brain Function

Math Nerd Or Bookworm? Many Of The Same Genes Shape Both Abilities

Many of us tend to align ourselves with either numbers or words. We’re either math brains or we’re reading brains.

In college, my fellow English majors joked about how none of us could long-divide to save our lives, while our friends in engineering groaned about the fact that Lit 101 was a graduation requirement.

But it turns out that about half the genes that influence a child’s math ability also seem to influence reading ability, according to a study published Tuesday in the journal Nature Communications.

“You’d think that cognitively what’s going on with math and reading is very different,” saysRobert Plomin, a behavioral geneticist at Kings College London, and one of the authors of the study. “Actually, people who are good at reading, you can bet, are pretty good at math too. The researchers looked at 2,800 pairs of 12-year-old British twins who were part of the largerTwins Early Development Study. Some pairs were very nearly genetically identical; the other pairs were fraternal twins, meaning they are the same age and shared a quite similar early environment, but are no more genetically similar than other siblings.  WHAT DO YOU THINK…?

Math Nerd or Bookworm?

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