January was a busy though choppy month in the LMC, with days off for cold, and Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday as well as MAP testing. But classes were still busy with a variety of learning activities.
In kindergarten we began a focus on winter, reading a Monarch nominated book Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messner about where animals go in the winter, and The Red Sled by Lita Judge, a wordless picture book for which students told the story from the pictures. In the lab, students used Pixie to create a picture with animals over and under the snow, we read about snowflakes in PebbleGo, and made virtual snowflakes.
In first grade, we began research on "Homes Around the World" by reading the Monarch nominated book If I Built a House by Chris Van Dusen, a creative fiction story and If You Lived Here: Houses of the World by Giles Laroche. Next we listened to a PebbleGo chapter on homes around the world and practiced taking notes for "cabin", using a graphic organizer for the location of the house, the material it is made of, the weather and environment around it. Next week students will choose one type of house and do their own research on huts or house on stilts, or adobe houses, or houseboats, cave homes, or round homes from China.
In second grade, it is time to delve into the Caldecott Medal! Caldecott is awarded to the illustrator of the most distinguished picture book of the year. We examine many of these wonderful books, learning the criteria of the award and the different reasons why a book was chosen and practiced finding the copyright date to determine what year the book won the medal (one year after its copyright). Finally students become the judges and read a book to rate it, using the Caldecott Committee's criteria. Next week the 2015 Caldecott Award will be announced!