Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Kindergarten Picnic

Our class will join the other four kindergarten classes in a day of fun across the street at Longfellow Park on our last day of school, Tuesday, June 10.  Our class will head over to the park at 9:45 after music and Spanish classes.  We will come back to school for lunch.  After lunch we will head back to Longfellow Park for the afternoon, except for P.E. from 1:20-1:50.  Families are welcome to join us for any portion of our day there!
While the forecast could certainly change, next Tuesday is expected to be sunny with a high of 75 degrees.  Students should bring and wear sunscreen.  Hats and shorts are recommended.  Kids may want to bring or wear a swimsuit as the sprinkler will be on.  Feel free to bring outside toys such as soft balls, Wiffle bats, jump ropes, etc.

Something for Nothing!

Fair warning: free days can be BUSY! I believe Chicago Public Schools on a traditional schedule get out June 19th, so you might consider going before then. Please visit each website to double check dates.

Adler Planetarium 
Free June 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 12

Art Institute of Chicago 
Free every Thursday from 5-8pm
Children under 14 are always free.

Lincoln Park Zoo
Always Free!

Chicago Children’s Museum at Navy Pier
Free for everyone – Every Thursday evening, 5-8pm
Free for ages 15 and under – First Sunday of every month

DuSable Museum of African American History in Hyde Park
Free on Sundays

Field Museum of Natural History
Free June 4, 5, 9

Museum of Science & Industry in Hyde Park
Free June 1 - 6

National Museum of Mexican Art in Pilsen
Always free!

The Oriental Institute in Hyde Park
Always free!

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum in Lincoln Park
Free on Thursdays

Shedd Aquarium
Free June 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, 17

Garfield Park Conservatory
Always free!

And last, but not least:
Millennium Park concerts - Ms. Vietzen's favorite thing about Chicago, you might see her there!
Free concerts several nights a week, so bring a picnic.  (I think this is a great way to expose children to music and concert-going without splurging on an expensive ticket.)  The green and blue lines will get you close, and, if you can keep a secret, parking in the Aon building is a good deal if you're in between 3pm and 6pm.

1st Grade Word Wall Words

You can find a list of the first grade sight words here.  There are a lot more in first grade than in kindergarten!  You may want to take some time over the summer to get started.

Summer Fun Without a Screen!

I hope you make LOTS of time for play this summer! Try many types of activities: board games, card games, dice games, paper and pencil games, outdoor games, ball games, imaginative games. While some games are "better" than others, they can all be of some value. Some are great for fine motor skills, reading, math, spatial orientation, and building strategy. In addition, following all types of directions and rules for different games better prepares children for understanding directions for something new.

Spot It!
Chutes and Ladders
Memory/ Concentration
jigsaw puzzles
crossword puzzles
word searches
word scrambles
bike riding
hidden picture puzzles
"What's Different?" pictures
I Spy books
Zoobz/ K'nex
pop beads
journal writing
shoe tying

Also consider art projects with coloring, cutting, and gluing to develop fine motor skills.
Don't forget about the OP Public Library Summer Reading Program and Longfellow's Super Summer Math, run out of Maze Library.

In addition, your Lexia account will still be up and running this summer, too. If you need the directions again, just let me know. While I would limit a young child's screen (TV, computer, etc) time to 30-60 minutes a day, these games can keep their brains going to maximize learning retention. 

Super Summer Math and the OPPL Summer Reading Program

If you haven't already, be sure to sign up for Super Summer Math!
Super Summer Math is designed to keep math fresh in the kids’ minds over the summer. The free program for Longfellow students is held at Maze Library   We will be meeting Tuesday evenings 6-7pm or Thurs mornings 10:30-11:30am at the Maze Library from June 10-July 24. Come as often as you can!  Kids earn prizes for doing math packets and will play fun math games. Parents/guardians can help coordinators distribute materials and volunteer to run math activities at the library.

The deadline has passed to sign up and get your books before school lets out.  HOWEVER, you can attend any  SSM session and sign up there.

Questions contact Heather Radzinski at heatherrad01@yahoo.com

The public library's summer reading program, Fizz, Boom, Read, starts Monday, June 9!  You can sign up at the library - I hope you do!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Longfellow Family Garden Club

You can join the Longfellow Family Garden Club. If you want to participate you can either RSVP for the May 12th meeting at 6:00 PM in the auditorium or you can email Jill Niewoehner at pto@newwanderer.com.

The Longfellow Family Garden Club is a group comprised of Longfellow families who believe in good food, and want to learn to grow their own. They plant and maintain the vegetable beds on the south side of the building (across from the new greenhouse donated by the Girl Scouts). Families in the club sign up to maintain the garden for a week or two over the summer. There are optional evening meetings in the summer to learn about taking care of the garden from each other. Families learn about soil, weeding, planting, and the best part, HARVESTING! The members of the garden club share in the bounty, and the leftover produce is donated.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

A to Z Countdown

Can you believe it?!  There are only 26 school days left!  Thus begins our A to Z Countdown.  These activities are encouraged, though not required.  The ones in bold include an item you might bring from home.

5/5 A-Animal Day: We’re headed to Lincoln Park Zoo!  Learn a new fact about an animal there so you can write about it when we come back.  We’ll share all the things we learned!
5/6 B-Baby Day: Bring in a picture of yourself when you were a baby.
5/7 C - Crown Day: We’ll crown the kings and queens of kindergarten!
5/8 D- Dancing Day: We’ll dance today during recess!
5/9 E- Equipment Day: Bring your favorite playground toys: soft balls, jump ropes, Frisbees, and Wiffle bats.
5/12 F- Favorite Book Day: Bring in your favorite book to share/read during stations.
5/13 G- Game Day: Bring in your favorite game to play. (No electronics)
5/14  H- Horticulture Day: Today we will walk to the Oak Park Conservatory.
5/15 I- Inside Out Day: Wear something inside out!
5/16 J- Jersey Day: Wear your favorite team jersey for Sports Day and Olympic Day.  It might be a professional team, a school team, or your team!
5/19 K- Kindness Day: Share some extra kindness today.
5/20 L- Lollipop Day: What’s your favorite flavor?  We’ll graph them.   I’ll provide the lollipops.
5/21 M- Music Day: We’ll listen to a variety of different music today.
5/22 N- Nickel Day: Bring a nickel to school. We’ll sort and graph them by year.
5/23 O - On Your Mark, Get Set, Go!  We will have races at recess.
5/27  P- Puzzle Day: We’ll do puzzles today…crossword, search & finds, word searches, jigsaws and more!
5/28 Q- Quiz Your Teacher Day: See if you can “stump” Ms. Vietzen with a hard question.
5/29 R- Read-a-thon Day: Tally how many books you read today.
5/30 S- Sidewalk Chalk Day: Today we will go outside and draw with sidewalk chalk.
6/2 T – Tying Shoes Day: If you have them, wear shoes with laces and we’ll practice tying.  If you already know, you can help a friend!
6/3 U- Unforgettable Day: Share your favorite experience in kindergarten. What will you miss next year?
6/4 V- Video Day: Today we will watch a video.
6/5 W- Wear Longfellow Gear: Wear Longfellow clothes today 
6/6 X- eXtra Fun Hat Day: Wear your favorite hat for Hat Day at school.
6/9 Y- Year End Cleaning: We’ll clean our tables, room, and cubbies!
6/10 Z- Zip and Zoom: Today is our last day of school so we’ll celebrate by zipping and zooming around Longfellow Park.  Have a great summer!