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What’s going on this month at Mapleridge?

April Blog Post: April weather, rain and sunshine both together.

During the month of April, our learning focused on animals and creatures that live underwater. We explored ways these animals and creatures move, what they might eat as well as some of the characteristics that make them unique. We read our most favorite book this year (every class!), “I’m the Biggest Thing in the Ocean!” by Kevin Sherry and used characters cut out of felt and our felt board to assist in the children’s memorizing and retelling of the story. Memorization and the retelling of favorite books can be a wonderful strategy to incorporate in supporting your child to learn to read.
This month we also enjoyed a visit to Bow Habitat Station fish hatchery for an educational program on fish. It’s always exciting for the children to see eachother outside of the classroom. Thank you to all the parents for accompanying us on the field trip. These types of outings contribute to that wonderful sense of community that Mapleridge Preschool is known for. The children also enjoyed attending a special evening class this month with their Dads or another special adult during which they worked on a top-secret Mother's Day gift together. Thank you to everyone for attending!
The 4 year old class continued to work on printing a letter of the alphabet each week and finished the alphabet this month. Hooray! We have now moved on to printing numbers. Kindergarten, here we come!
The 3 year old class continued to work on printing their first names and general letter and numeral recognition through circletime games and songs as well as playtime activities. Both classes enjoyed working on a letter hunt which involved searching the classroom for letters (displayed on green frogs taped in various spots around the classroom) and checking off each one on a sheet of paper.
The arrival of Spring (finally!) has presented an opportunity to bring more science-based projects into the classroom. We sprouted beans by moistening cotton balls and placing those and a couple beans into Ziploc bags and taping the bags to our windows. After a week or so, we could see the sprouts and roots and have successfully transplanted them into little cups so they can continue to grow. This project offered an opportunity to discuss what plants need in order to grow. We have also welcomed 18 caterpillars into our classroom. We have been eagerly checking on them each day and all of the children are thoroughly enjoying looking at them through magnifying glasses and watching them grow. We are anticipating that they will be forming chrysalises within the next week and (fingers crossed) will complete their transformation into butterflies before the end of the school year. This project in providing us with the opportunity to study the caterpillar/butterfly life cycle (egg-caterpillar-butterfly) and learn new vocabulary such as metamorphosis and chrysalis.
May will be a busy month as we prepare Mother’s Day and Father’s Day gifts as well as celebrate our Moms by serving them lemonade and serenading them with a couple special songs. The end of the year is fast approaching and will wrap up with year end parties and a family picnic at Lake Bonavista. Happy Spring everyone!

Deborah Teppler