MLK JR. ASSEMBLY
After a lovely dance performance by the Iona Calhoun Ballet School, each class shared its "gifts" with our community. These gifts focused on how we could help influence and inspire others in our school. The children in Room 227 chose kindness as their gift. Stay tuned for a random acts of kindness activity coming soon. To help us, please share with us (in an email) any acts of kindness you "catch" your child doing at home - no matter how big or small. As we say with our Kindergarten Buddies, "Kindness is contagious. Pass it on!"
Last week, we introduced the concept of line symmetry. A shape has line symmetry if you can fold it in half and both halves match exactly. The fold line is called the line of symmetry. Some shapes, like a square or a circle, can have several lines of symmetry.
As a fun way to practice symmetry and sharpen visual/spatial skills, we introduced the app called Pattern Shapes. It can also be used on your home computer here: http://www.mathlearningcenter.org/web-apps/pattern-shapes/. The kids used this app to create symmetrical designs. You will see these posted to SeeSaw soon. The Pattern Shapes app can also be used to explore geometric relationships, think about angles, and compose and decompose larger shapes, and think about fractions as parts of a whole. We will use it many times this year.
We will celebrate Valentine’s Day before the long MidWinter Break weekend on Wednesday, February 10th. A pizza party will be arranged through CafeLab and each family will be billed through FACTS. In the past it was about $3-4 per family. Please RSVP and select your pizza preference here. CafeLab will provide plates, utensils and napkins for the pizza. We'd also like to add some items to the lunch including dessert, beverages, and veggies. Sign up here if you'd like to contribute or help with set up/clean up: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/5080f44a5aa2da57-valentines
Finally, If your child is brining Valentines, he/she must make one for everyone in our class. Valentines for other teachers and staff are optional. We will not be able to deliver Valentines to students in other classrooms. Please send Valentines to school by Wednesday, February 10th. Your child is welcome to bring them earlier so he/she won’t forget. Also, if you attach candy to the valentines, make sure it is peanut/tree nut free. You will find a class list below (and available for download) to help with addressing the valentines.
Ty's mom, Shelly, is helping us to plan a Black History Luncheon in honor of Black History Month. As she writes, "This luncheon will give our children an opportunity to enjoy the long rich history of African Americans through the wonderful experience of food. The food itself has a story and during our celebration students will get a chance to watch a short clip of the 6 hour video "The African Americans Many Rivers to Cross", by Henry Louis Gates. We expect the menu to include: Macaroni and Cheese, Jambalaya, Collard Greens, and Sweet Potato Pie. If you would like to add a dish to our luncheon, help set-up or clean up, please sign up below:
FAMILY MESSAGE JOURNALS
Family Message Journals were sent home on Friday. Please respond to your child's letter and return the journal early this week. Thank you.
Please remember to sign-up for a Parent-Teacher Conference in February. The sign-up link is available here and was also emailed to you. We look forward to talking to you about your child's progress. Progress Reports will be available to you on Monday, February 22nd.
WHOOPING CRANE UPDATE
The whooping cranes flew 58 more miles today and have reached Decatur County, Georgia! The next stop will be Florida with less than 100 miles to go until hey reach their winter home. Stay tuned this week for details and a date for our Whooping Crane Dance Party and Celebration!
Sadly, we learned this weekend that this will be the last year of ultralight-guided migration for the cranes as decided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. As O.M. writes,
There are a number of inhibitors to a successful reintroduction of Whooping cranes. Firstly, you need a method of teaching them migration. Then you must get enough of them onto the landscape so a high percentage will survive to reach breeding age. You must ensure they exhibit wild behavior and mate with their own kind.
Operation Migration team has been very successful in achieving those goals. In fact, the Ultralight led method we pioneered comes closer than any other technique yet developed. It provides the highest survival rate, greater pairing and the only fledged chicks produced in the Eastern Migratory Population.
Despite those achievements, you can only judge the success of a wildlife reintroduction by fecundity or the ability for the population to produce young and grow to a self-sustaining level. Of the 240 plus birds released into the EMP, only ten chicks have survived to fledge. We have taken pride in the fact that all of those successes have been the result of UL pairs, but it’s a long ways from sustainability.
Read more here.
I am grateful to have been apart of this historic conservation effort for the last 8 years and for the friends I have made at Operation Migration. This study has been one of the most memorable of my teaching career. Your children should be proud of their efforts and I hope they have learned the importance of working to saving an endangered species.
Have a great week!