Monday, December 28, 2009

Wind and Water (home ideas)

Dear Preschool Families,
We're reading books and talking about wind and water at school. We hope that you will take some time to talk about wind and water (and weather!) at home, too.
The following is a list of books that children will be exposed to over the next month:

Gilberto and the Wind by Marie Halls Ets

A Hat for Minerva Louise by Janet M. Stoeke

The Snowy Day By Ezra Jack Keats

One Dark Night by Hazel Hutchins

Rabbits and Raindrops by Jim Arnosky

The Very Noisy Night by Diana Hendry

Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain by Verna Aardema

See How They Grow: Kitten by Jane Burton

Here are some fun activities you can do at home to help carryover the concept of Wind and Water into the home:

At bath time, add toys and plastic cups to the tub. Notice which things sink, float squirt or soak up water.

During a thunderstorm, watch the sky through a window. Talk about what you see. Count slowly between the lightning and the thunder.

Watch the weather forecast, Explain words such as windy, gusts or humidity. The next day, discuss whether the forecast was correct.

Play a rhyming game: "I see something wet and it rhymes with lane. It's ____ (rain)! Make the clues easy so the game is fun.

Let your child blow through a straw. See if he or she can find three things that can be moved easily that way.

Visit a playground. As you child plays on the equipment describe the actions: over, under, around and through.

In the tub float plastic lids. Blow on them and give the little plastic animals boat rides. Talk about the wind.

Go outside on a windy day. Notice all the ways you can tell the wind is blowing and talk about them.

Let you child help load and unload the dryer. Talk about how the clothes feel and look when going in and coming out.

These are just suggestions of fun things to do that will enhance what you child is learning about in school. Take some time to enjoy your child and observe wind and water.

Beautiful Junk

When the children return from the holidays on January 4th we will begin our first unit on Wind and Water. While exploring the topic the students will participate in lots of fun lessons. We could use your help collecting the following items from the "beautiful junk" list:
Balloons (latex free if you can find them)
golf balls
table top fan (make sure your name is on it and we will return it at the end of the month)
aluminum pans
fabric scraps
medicine cups
outdoor thermometer (make sure it is labeled so we can return it)
pincer clothespins
long drinking straws
plastic tubing
large buckets
dowel rods
small yogurt containers
aprons (make sure your name is on it)

If you have any of the following items around the house we would love to borrow them. Please don't feel the need to go out and purchase any of the items. Anything that you send in and want returned at the end of the month please make sure you label them and let the classroom teacher know. We appreciate your help and support.

Monday, December 21, 2009


Dear Preschool Families,

The purpose of this letter is to inform you of two new and exciting initiatives that will take place when classes resume in January. The first is called Opening the World of Learning. The second is a program blog that will help keep you informed of happenings in the preschool.

Opening the World to Learning (OWL) is a research based and field-tested integrated Pre-K curriculum. It is designed to develop language and early literacy skills in the context of rich content – primarily in the areas of mathematics, science and social studies. The program has 6 units and the topics include: Family, Friends, Wind and Water, World of Color, Shadows and Reflections and Things That Grow. When the children return in January we will begin with Wind and Water. One of the exciting pieces of the OWL is that it has home carryover for each unit. We will use our new blog to share with you ideas and activities that you can do with your children that will help reinforce concepts that are being taught in school. We will need support with developing our units and we will ask for weekly supplies for the activities. The supplies that we will need we refer to as “beautiful junk.” Many of the items are things that can be recycled or items that you currently put in the trash. You know that saying “one person’s trash is another person’s treasure.” In the preschool one person’s trash is a wonderful hands on activity that will help your child to acquire new skills and concepts. We will post our junk lists on the blog.

We are going to attempt to go green in the preschool and cut back on the enormous amount of paper we go through on a weekly basis. All of the teachers will be posting their weekly newsletters on the blog. The blog will also provide the staff the opportunity to share videos and pictures of your children participating in curriculum activities. We are excited to use the blog as yet another form of communication to keep families informed about what is happening in the integrated preschool.

We are excited about all of our new initiatives for 2010 and feel confident that they will enhance the quality of programming that is provided for your children on a daily basis. To find us on the web go to the Burlington Public Schools web site at click on the link for the integrated preschool and you will see the link for the preschool blog. Our goal will be to update it several times a week

We wish you and your family a very happy and healthy holiday season. We are looking forward to 2010 being a fun and exciting year of learning in the integrated preschool.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns feel free to contact Louise at 781-273-7632 or @ D’

Thank You,

The staff of the Burlington Integrated Preschool