Recapping September 2022:
Wow! We’ve already had a month’s worth of learning in our Microschool Classes! From shifting to a new location and having an End-Of-Summer Pool Party, to starting the first day and quickly welcoming three friends into our ‘pod,’ we’ve had a busy year so far! Here is a recap of the highlights, and if you’d like, you can download and print the full [September 2022 Newsletter].
Happy first day of school!
- End-Of-Summer Pool Party: We kicked off the year at our new location with a back-to-school pool party! Families and siblings got to run around, swim, eat, and get excited for the year ahead! [Watch the little recap video here!]
- School Photos: We were blessed to have the amazing Natalie Chiles come to our location to take our pictures! How fun was it to have a full photography studio around the corner from our classroom?!
- New Friends: This month we welcomed THREE amazing new families to our pod. We LOVE having you on board Kingston, Polina, & Willy!
What We’re Up To In Math:
Math is all about building automaticity for our facts and developing the skills and confidence around numbers, patterns, time, money, and word problems!
We use a lot of “Math Stations” to help students rotate through different activities in a gamified way. Rather than feeling pressured or ‘bored’ with simple paper-pencil work, these stations encourage excitement around math basics! Plus, both teamwork AND independence are fostered as we switch between self-stations and partner/small-group stations!
What We’re Up To In Science:
This month we investigated the properties of matter with a deep dive into solids, liquids, and gasses and what makes them different (or what bends the rules. . . like slime!)
We got messy and created our own slime! Plus, we did multiple scavenger hunts helping us discover ways we can classify materials (by their size, shape, texture, color, and state of matter).
We also started talking about different types of weather and how the changes in weather mirror the changes in matter (solid to liquid, liquid to gas, etc.)
What We’re Up To In Language Arts:
Our morning sessions focused on phonics, sounds and syllable patterns, and identifying (and implementing!) the basics of grammar.
We’re also learning about nouns (people, places, and things) and what the difference between a common noun (every day person, place or thing) or proper noun (name or date) is. We also explored verbs (action words) and how these two parts come together to make a sentence!
In our afternoon sessions, we’ve continued to build upon this by creating our own multi-part sentences, and adding vocabulary, adjectives, and self-editing to our writing!
Oh, and we’re reading a class book, too: The Buddy Files: The Case of the Lost Boy!
What We’re Up To In Social Studies:
- Landforms: We investigated, explored, and labeled different landforms and talked about where they are located around the world.
- Maps & Beginning Geography: We’re taking a deeper look at maps, understanding how you read them, and the purpose of a compass or diretions (North, South, East & West). We’re also using maps to identify locations, like where we live, where different countries we’re learning about are located, and more!
- India: We spent this month learning about India and the culture, food, spices, accents/language, points of interest, flag, people, customs, and more! We also had a ‘fieldtrip’ day where we stamped passports and ‘traveled’ to India! During our ‘trip,’ we watched a clip of the Elephant Festival, listened to music, each student decorated his/her own sari, and some brave individuals tried Tikka Masala curry and rice!
A big part of our days is getting outside. Whether we’re going on scavenger hunts, having a lesson, doing an art project, or moving our bodies, we’re taking full advantage of the Southern California sun!
Each day we have a ‘recess’ block, too, where play is either structured or free (depending on the day). We also have Yoga Time, where we play different yoga games and try different poses together!
Other September 2022 Updates:
All in all, we’ve had a great start to the school year! At the start of each week, we play a game called “High, Low, Buffalo” — ‘High’ is a happy moment, ‘Low’ is a bad moment, and ‘Buffalo’ is a random moment. Here is our ‘High Low Buffalo’ for September 2022:
- High: Getting to start in our new classroom, watching our students flourish, welcoming some new friends (who quickly got acquainted with our group!) and watching our students care for one another in challenging moments.
- Low: When one of our playground sprinklers got broken and water was exploding into the air uncontrollably for 15 minutes at the start of school!
- Buffalo: Learning that there’s a thing as a ‘Plumcot’ – no more mystery fruit!
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, Polina is being highlighted for her diligence and perseverance in school! Although she joined a bit late (and English isn’t her first language!!) she’s been such a hard worker and overcomes her shyness to join in with the group every day. Hooray, Polina!