Unit 1 Families

Welcome to Unit 1- FAMILIES.
Storybooks we have read in Unit 1 so far featured below.  As you know, we read each book 3 times. Each reading has a different focus (enjoyment, vocabulary,comprehension.) Ask your child about the storybooks. Ask them to retell the story for you.    One of our first books is OONGA BOONGA!                 
  conga book cover.
oonga boonga  
We will also read Whistle For Willie as well as Peter's Chair, both written by Ezra Jack Keats.

Whistle for Willie

peters chair
Peter's Chair

We use different themes from thestorybooks to build the rest of the activities in the classroom. The grandfather in Oonga Boonga plays music.  We have been discussing musical instruments and making our own percussion instruments. The bottle shakers offered the children an introduction to a project with a procedure.  They were able to refer to the chart to complete the project. Procedural writing is a skill that children have to do in Kindergarten.We aim to expose children to these concepts. 
Look for the bottle shakers soon!
bottle shakers poster
We have also been learning about butterflies and will welcome a special nature visitor will come on Friday to bring live butterflies.  We have read the story Farfallina and Marcel.  This is a story about a special friendship between and gosling and a caterpillar.  Once they both grow and change, they don't recognize each other!

farfalina and Marcel book cover   farfalina and Marcel book cover
Both classrooms have science areas designated to the study of butterflies.  We have information books, specimens, and magnifying glasses for children to explore.

science area
Last Friday, we had some special visitors who brought monarch butterflies, books about the life cycle of the monarch, and many specimins of monarch butterflies.

life cycle


boys reading

Check out these great pictures of children in the classroom! Jasiah    Mia


After reading some of the story books for a third time, the students tried turn and talk. This is where they sit knee to knee with a friend and discuss a question that the teacher has asked.  This gives each child a chance to share their ideas in a smaller group. The pair then shares one of their ideas with the larger group.  It generates some great conversation about the story.  

corduroyoonga boonga
 We recently read these stories, Corduroy and Oonga Boonga.


Block building- The City of Portland!

The children have been having fun acting out WHISTLE FOR WILLIE by Ezra Jack Keats.

whistle for willie picture from book

reflection logan and fuadreflection fuad

whistle for willie, carton pic

 Who Knew a box could be so much fun. The children were pretending to be hiding from the dog 
Willie, just like in the story.

box for whistle for willie


Recently we had a visit from the Portland Stage Company. We are lucky to have them visit our school several times each year.  The actors will act out several stories using their voices, bodies and imaginations. These are are two stories that the actors performed and a picture of the actors during the performance. This is always a favorite assembly of the year.  The actors work with the older grades after the performance, teaching the students how to act out stories.


story 1

story 2


Christine organized an exciting Author Visit from Maine author Cathryn Falwell recently.  It was very interesting to see how a real author gets an idea for a book, then turns that idea into art.  Cathryn shared how books are printed using only 4 colors. She demonstrated using a page from one of her books.
cathryn falwell color

Cathryn Falwell had a great interactive presentation for the students. They have really been inspired by the art of Cathryn and have been writing nature books.

C. Falwell

C. falwell reading