Save our Earth! has been the mantra in the Ladybug room this week, as we've poured, planted, and painted in honor of our beloved planet. Our color of the week was green, of course, and our letter, O. We also worked daily on our very own shape study books.
The weather was so gorgeous on Tuesday, we spent a lot of time in our garden. Aside from our regular watering and weeding, the Ladybugs made terrariums! Thank you so much, families, for bringing in those plastic bottles. Each child filled his or her bottle with dirt and poured some seeds and water on top. The Ladybugs also planted zinnia seeds in our garden, so that it stays beautiful for the church staff this summer. Back inside, we read, Ten Little Ladybugs by Melanie Gerth, a fun counting book in which, one by one, all of the ladybugs disappear! Our Ladybugs had fun counting, and the book led to a chat about how important ladybugs are to our Earth.
On Wednesday, the Ladybugs looked at a globe, and we talked about how green represents land and blue, water. We illustrated the green and blue concept when we painted the children's hands with green and blue paint, and then press them onto paper. They were amazed to see their hand prints form an Earth! In chapel, Pastor Amy delivered a dramatic sermon--she began by throwing plastic bags and paper onto the altar! The children's eyes grew big and their jaws dropped! We pretended to board a rocket, which could take us to a cleaner planet. We returned after we found that there were no other planets suitable for human life. Upon our return, Pastor Amy cleaned up the altar and put items into a recycling bin. The children loved it! Later that day, we read Growing Vegetable Soup by Louis Ehlert, in which a father teaches a child how to grow and tend a vegetable garden, and then how to make delicious soup using their harvest.
We focused on the color green on Thursday, as the Ladybugs matched green shapes. We read Less is More by Alison Klosser, a book that features a creature who overindulges on a planet and leaves when there is nothing left. The children were happy to see another type of creature arrive, who decides to take less and save more for later. In music class, Mrs. S led us in our usual songs and dance party, which is always a hit! How the kids love to boogie.
Next week, please sign up for one of our 30-minute parent/teacher conferences, all of which will be held Monday, May 7. Free childcare will be available that day. We can't wait to show you how much your children have grown, and all they have learned this year. They amaze us.
Also, we hope you will join Grace Garden's teachers on the playground on Saturday, May 12, from 5 to 7 p.m. for our Garden Party fundraiser! Joe McDermott is performing, and the teachers will be baking their favorite treats to delight your families. We hope you will pack a picnic dinner and come enjoy each other, while considering a donation to new playground equipment.
Next week, we will talk about the ocean, all that lives there, and all the ways we love it. Have a beautiful weekend!
Ms. Shannon and Ms. Tammy
We wore sunglasses and held umbrellas in the Ladybug room this week, as we studied weather! Our color of the week was pink, and our letter, N.
The Ladybugs started off their week giggling, as we painted the bottoms of their ticklish feet to make footprints on sunny beaches (construction paper)! We tried on sunglasses and sat on towels as we threw a beach ball around the room. Because it hasn't rained over the past few days, we needed to water our garden. Back by popular demand, each child got to take a turn at the big hose, as we helped along our thirsty plants. We also read It's Too Windy! by Han Wilhelm, in which a dog and a baby stroller have to fight the wind during their walk.
On our sunny Wednesday morning, making bubbles was our top priority--we headed out to the playground with our sensory table full of bubble solution! The Ladybugs blew bubbles of all sizes using yarn, plastic wands, and different shaped stencils. Not much is better than watching little ones chase bubbles while shrieking with laughter. We also took turns finger painting different colors on huge pieces of paper. We later cut them to form a really special rainbow! We read The Little Cloud by Eric Carle and talked about how clouds can look like different shapes floating in the sky. The Ladybugs had a super time in chapel that day, because St. John's senior pastor, Pastor Paul, led our sermon! He taught us new songs and told a story about how Jesus and his disciples were caught on a boat during a rain storm. Aside from making the story hilarious for the children, he taught them how to make the sounds of pitter pattering rain using their fingers. It was wonderful!
We read The Rain Came Down by David Shannon on Thursday, in which a rain storm puts all the townspeople in a bad mood. As soon as the rain stops and the sun shines, everyone is happy again. (We explained that Texans actually LOVE rain!) The Ladybugs made it rain on paper at the easel that morning, as they sprayed paint out of squirt bottles! We also sang to weather songs with Mrs. S. during music class and worked on a fun finger play called "Here is the Bee Hive, Where are the Bees?", which we hope your child will share with you.
Please remember to donate to or stop by St. John's United Methodist Women's annual garage sale on May 4th and 5th. Donations will be received in the Fellowship Hall from April 22 until May 2. Monies will fund mission projects, and there will be just about everything under the sun to buy.
Speaking of raising money, please mark your calendars for Saturday, May 12th from 5 until 7 p.m.! Our very own Grace Garden teachers want to raise money to improve the playground and buy new equipment for the children, and therefore the school will host a benefit concert starring the fabulous, nationally recognized children's musician Joe McDermott! Home baked goodies, hot popcorn, freshly squeezed lemonade, and beautiful photos of your children will be on sale that evening! The concert is free, so please bring a blanket and picnic dinner, and come enjoy the evening while you consider donating specific pieces of playground equipment, of which we will have photos and prices displayed.
Next week, the Ladybugs will celebrate Earth Day and learn the importance of reducing, reusing, and recycling to preserve their planet. Have a wonderful weekend!
Ms. Shannon and Ms. Tammy
The Ladybugs rolled through this week, as we talked about wheels and vehicles that GO! Our color of the week was blue, and our letter, M.
We started off the week singing one of our favorites, "The Wheels on the Bus," and the Ladybugs joined in, remembering the finger plays. We painted circles (wheels!) by dipping spools into blue paint and stamping them on paper. Our garden needed some love and water this week, as the warmer weather left our plants thirsty. Each Ladybug took a turn watering with the big hose--what a blast! We also planted more seeds, lettuce this time, and we hope these will take. The Ladybugs were thrilled to see our gorgeous passion flowers in full bloom on our garden's vines.
On Wednesday, we read Trains and Trucks, both by Byron Barton, terrific board books that simply show different examples of each mode of transportation. The Ladybugs also rolled toy cars in brown paint, which we pretended was mud! We then "drove" the cars over paper to watch the different patterns the tires left. Pastor Amy talked about boats in chapel, as she told us the story of when Jesus and his disciples crossed a lake by boat to take a break from the crowds of followers. She taught us the song, "Michael Row the Boat Ashore, Hallelujah!"
We hit home our wheel theme on Thursday, when the Ladybugs made their own wheels out of paper plates, black paint, and sand. The Ladybugs sang a variety of transportation songs with Mrs. S. in music class, too, including "Down by the Station."
We took several opportunities this week to talk about using our walking feet inside, sharing with our friends, and treating our friends as we would like for them to treat us, specifically by using gentle words and touch.
The St. John's United Methodist Women will host their annual garage sale on Friday, May 4 and Saturday, May 5 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. They will be taking donations of gently used household items, working appliances, jewelry, lawn and garden supplies, sports equipment, tools, children's clothing, toys, games, CDs, DVDs, books, linens, and kitchenware. If you would like to donate something, please bring it to the Fellowship Hall beginning April 22, after the 11 a.m. service, until Wednesday, May 2. Thank you!
Next week, the Ladybugs will learn all about weather! Have a relaxing weekend!
Ms. Shannon and Ms. Tammy
The Ladybugs have been hopping down the bunny trail this week, as we've prepared for Easter!
The first order of business, on Tuesday, was for the Ladybugs to make their Easter "baskets" by placing stickers on gift bags. The Ladybugs LOVE stickers and they don't even realize that peeling gives those fine motor skills the workout they need. There's something else the Ladybugs love, and that is glitter! So, we made some extra fancy bunny ears for them to wear. It's easy to see how much stronger their hands have gotten since the beginning of the year, as they can really squeeze a glue bottle now. The Ladybugs helped weed and water our garden that morning, and we re-read The Story of Easter by Patricia Pingry, hoping to plant seeds about the true meaning of Easter.
Speaking of the true meaning of Easter, Pastor Amy gave a show stopping sermon during chapel on Wednesday, when she turned out the lights! The Ladybugs were very brave as they sat in the dark and watched Pastor Amy light candles, one representing God and the others representing each of our classes at Grace Garden. She then extinguished each flame, one by one, teaching us that although Jesus' flame went out, we can still see and feel his love around us. We then sang, "This Little Light of Mine".
After chapel, the Ladybugs headed back to the room to learn about the tradition of dyeing Easter eggs. We first read Here Comes Peter Cottontail by Steve Nelson and Jack Rogers, and looked at pictures of colorful, decorated eggs. The children then got to dye eggs of their own! What fun to watch the white eggs change colors. We chilled the eggs and ate them for snack after our big egg hunt on Thursday.
Wow, parents! Thank you so much for bringing in all of those fabulously filled plastic eggs for the hunt. All of their patience during the week paid off, because the Ladybugs had a blast discovering the eggs and putting them in their bags. After all of the eggs were found, we dumped the eggs on our rug, and made sure each child received eggs numbered one through eight, so they can practice counting at home! After all of the excitement of the hunt, the Ladybugs experimented with mixing colors, as we used eye droppers to drop our leftover dye onto white paper. It was magical to see the different colors one can make from just green, pink, and orange. Music class carried an Easter theme that day, as the Ladybugs learned to sing "Little Bunny Foo Foo"!
We Ladybugs have been working on using our walking feet in the classroom, to keep us safe, and putting imaginary bubbles in our mouths as we walk through the halls of the church, to keep us quiet! We also visited our growth chart and were amazed to see that on average, the Ladybugs have grown over three inches since November!
We hope you have a beautiful, blessed Easter this weekend. We will be thinking of those precious happy faces on Sunday morning. Next week, the Ladybugs will learn about transportation!
Ms. Shannon and Ms. Tammy