Newsletter: December 2022

december 2022 newsletter

Recapping December 2022: 🎅🎄

From engineering our own igloo habitats with mini-marshmallows to learning about holidays and traditions around the world, December 2022 was short and sweet (but filled with exploration)! As we head back from our winter break, we’re excited for 2023! Here is a recap of the highlights – or you can DOWNLOAD + PRINT THE FULL VERSION HERE: [December 2022 Newsletter].

Monthly Highlights:

  • IGLOO CONSTRUCTION: Along with our learning about different habitats, we constructed an artic animal habitat – an igloo! – with toothpicks and mini-marshmallows!
  • RANDOM FACT FUN: In our newest book, we discovered how many guinea pigs can fit on an airplane… and a host of other random, fun facts about math & science!
  • HOLIDAY PARTY: Making cookies, doing holiday-themed learning activities & completing class ‘Mad Libs’ were a blast! What a fun way to end the 2022 year!

What We’re Up To In Math:

  • Identifying different patterns (skip counting or adding 10/taking away 10) as well as building automaticity around odd vs. even numbers
  • Using number lines to help us understand greater/less and see where numbers would ‘live.’ We also use number lines to help solve more challenging problems or for skip-counting!
  • Place value understanding, 1’s, 10’s, and 100’s place & how we can identify a number’s value based on the place
  • Complex Adding & Subtracting as well as understanding word problems and labeling parts of those problems to help us solve!

See our Holiday Math Stations in action! ↓

What We’re Up To In Science:

December was diving further into engineering, planning, and creating in STEM!

  • Igloo Building: We brainstormed igloo-construction ideas, created ‘road maps’ for building & then went hands-on! The fun part was learning what worked and what didn’t when it came to the mini-marshmallows and creating something strong, stable, and insulated! (And we got to snack on some mallows afterwards, too!)
  • Animal Habitats: This month we created habitat collages and talked about different animals types & adaptations! Our afternoon group completed a ‘mini research project,’ too, about an animal of choice & presented their findings to the group!

What We’re Up To In Language Arts:

  • CREATIVE WRITING: This month our focus has been starting with an idea and building off of that idea using sentence parts, proper parts of speech (noun, verb, adjective, etc.), and making sure the word endings match.
  • SYNTAX: As we work on our spelling & writing, we’re also focusing on proper syntax and punctuation. We’re continuing to develop our reading skills to determine complete vs. incomplete sentences and what makes a “good” sentence vs. “bad” one.
  • READING + WRITING: We did a whole unit on ‘Holidays Around The World,’ (see more below!). In our afternoon group, we also wrote some predictive & comparative writing!

What We’re Up To In Social Studies:

This month we (finally!) took our Philippines field trip! Then, rather than a single location focus, this month we learned about different cultures, beliefs and where certain holidays are celebrated!

In combination with our ELA unit, using our ‘Holidays Around The World’ packet, we studied different locations and holidays (Diwali, Kwanza, Christmas, Hanukkah, etc.) and talked about the similarities & differences in comparison what we celebrate with our families.

This led to some pretty thought-provoking conversations about the message or ‘why’ behind different celebrations, beliefs, and religions!

Other December 2022 Updates:

It’s wild how quick December flew by. . . and now we’re in 2023! Wow! Per usual, here’s our “High, Low, Buffalo” tradition — ‘High’ is a happy moment, ‘Low’ is a bad moment, and ‘Buffalo’ is a random moment — and here are a few for December 2022:

  • HIGH: Holiday Party! The holiday party (and cookie decorating) was a blast! It was a great way to send everyone off to 2023!
  • LOW: “So Short!” This month was short! Feedback was that we should have more days, although a break was well deserved!
  • BUFFALO: Guinea Pig Facts: We were equally surprised and delighted to learn that 472,500 guinea pigs can fit on a commercial airplane! Random facts are a great way to expand our minds and have a good laugh, too!

Spotlight Students:

Each month we celebrate a student (or students) who are doing exceptional academic work and/or been outstanding in terms of behavior, attitude, or empathy towards others.

This month’s Spotlight Student is Kanoa! Kanoa has earned his spot this month for being such a thoughtful friend. Not only did he bring his whole crystal collection to share with the class, but he always speaks to his peers with respect & kindness!

Whenever someone needs a partner, Kanoa is also the first to volunteer. He also helps to keep his classmates on track during lessons by encouraging them to focus! Thanks for being you, Kanoa!

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You can also download the full December 2022 Newsletter [RIGHT HERE].