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Room 105

Room 105 Teachers: Raven DiMichelle, Saryu Gruschow and Terry Boike


March 105 Newsletter


Dramatic Play
Children have helped create a game area in the upstairs loft. They are drawing their own video game scenes and making their own characters on the Bloxels iPad application. They are narrating their games as they play and turning them into stories. Look out for the character display outside our classroom soon!

 Rainbow Horse                  T-Rex                    Smiley Face             Sir Jesternaut
(Bad Blood)
Natalie S & Jessie        Bella & Natalie K         Gianna & Mac           Lily K & Parker

Children’s stories are blossoming in many different areas of the classroom. Children have even created stories about their characters in the Mo Willems inspired artwork displayed in the hallway. Their stories will live in their story workshop books, and we will publish them into a small book to accompany the two framed photos sold at the fundraiser.

We have been identifying patterns for the past month and we began using dance as a way to copy, create and add onto patterns. Moving forward, we’ll be discussing shapes, moving deeper than simply identifying shapes, but onto describing them by attributes and combining and separating shapes to make new ones. We’ll explore shape using blocks, and shapes on the floor to dance on.

Caelyn makes a left right dance pattern

Artist Study
The children have enjoyed our recent spotlight on the Author/Illustrator Peter Reynolds. We have been reading his books “The Dot,” “Ish,” and “Sky Color,” while discussing imagination, determination, and inspiration. They have embarked on a dot study through different art mediums.

We will be discontinuing snack for the AM group. Instead the morning group will start cooking on Fridays! We will post the items we need on Monday and would like to have them by Thursday! PM class will continue snack, the children benefit from the energy boost in the afternoon and we need PM parents to sign-up on the weekly snack list!

Special Olympics Young Athletes

The entire school will be participating in a one-day series of athletic competitions on June 1st at Armour Park. Transportation, lunch and a T-shirt will be included. Please return your registration slips (located in the mailboxes) by March 6th. If you are interested in chaperoning please inform a teacher. Over the next few weeks we will be practicing for the events. We’ll also be looking for parent volunteers to help us practice the activities in the spring.

Lily K draws a video game of her family     Gabriel and Paul make a video game story


Hello families,

We are having a thanksgiving celebration with room 105 and 106 tomorrow. This is our first meal time with the groups of children, we want to be sensitive to all allergies.

We are making a fruit salad in 105. Oranges, kiwi, cantaloupe, blueberries, grapes, and apples.

Room 106 is making a snack mix with gluten free pretzels, gluten free chex, raisins and chocloate chips (contain milk fat) to share with our room.

Please let us know if any of these ingredients are a concern for your child.

We will do our best to make snacks omitting ingredients if your child is allergic. You may of course pack a snack for your child to have instead of one of these if you are concerned about allergens.

Room 105 and 106

October Newsletter Room 105

Ms. Raven, Ms. Saryu, Ms. Terry

Children are settling into the routine of the school day and learning about one another. They are reuniting with old friends and making new ones. They are learning what it means to be a part of a classroom community. We are so thankful to all of you for helping make this transition a smooth one.

We have begun sharing our summer mementos in the classrooms during Story Congress. This is a time for your child to share their special memory from the summer. This is a component of the Story Workshop curriculum that we are slowly introducing through materials exploration, Story Congress, and an upcoming author study. We emphasize the voice of the author and illustrator during story time so we can begin to think of ourselves as authors too.

We document summer mementos using Teaching Strategies Gold (TSG), meeting a few objectives such as, “Tells about another time or place” and ”Makes connections.” If you have not brought one yet, please bring them next week. A picture or special item is the best way to get your children talking to us about their summer experience. Children are eager to participate and have a turn to share their summer stories.

We began a sorting station as part of our math curriculum. Thank you to families who have donated buttons! We have so many loose parts that we are using to match and create sets in our new station. Sorting is a foundational skill; in order to learn names of things, children must create sets in their mind. In order to know “how many apples?” we have to first decide what is an apple, and what is not. We will start with matching one item to another and grow into building sets and re-sorting the same set using different attributes.

We have been highlighting the emotions we all have as we navigate the terrain in the school environment. As we go forward together, we are focusing on the emotions we all have and recognizing them, so we can use them to inform the process of creating classroom agreements. We are practicing our empathy skills as we play with the babydolls. Thank you to all families who donated newborn clothing and accessories. We have even been using playdoh to make faces that convey different emotions.


  • October 21st is the first Parent-Child Activity day, we will be creating All About Me Books. The books and blank pages, markers and gluesticks are supplied by the classroom and the content is supplied by you. We ask that you bring photos of your child and familiy to add to the book. You can also draw all the pages yourself. It’s an open-ended book to fill with memories you can make together. This is not a full day of school. Children and families come for one hour to participate in the activity, and sign-up sheets will be posted the week of the event.
  • The leadership team met this year to discuss the Holiday Policy, and we chose to uphold the previous Policy, children will not be dressing up in costumes at school on Halloween. We will however have discussions about the holiday, read festive books and would love to see photos of them dressed-up to add to their All About Me books.
  • October 31st is the start of our annual Food Drive. The school will be collecting food for the Maple Morgan Park Food Pantry from Oct 31st- Nov 4th. All donations will be greatly appreciated, items in great need are cold cereal, and other dry goods like rice, pasta, etc.
  • Please send children with shoes and jackets that match the weather. If it is wet or raining out and children have appropriate attire, we would like to give them the opportunity to be outdoors. We don’t want them to be stuck indoors unless it is too cold or storming.
  • Birthday book readings are well underway, we wanted to make sure families are aware we cannot bring in food, but small gifts such as pencils, stickers, coloring pages are acceptable, but not at all expected, the main event should be sharing their favorite story and their special day with their family and classmates
  • Physicals have all been received, if your child needs any updates to their records teachers will speak with you directly, please ignore any automated calls you receive

Thank you to all families who invested your time and money in the book fair and Family Reading Night. And an extra thank you to families who purchased the classroom books from the book fair! We are thrilled to have these new titles in our classroom.

 Room 105 Newsletter

Important Dates:


20- Parent/Child Fun-Fitness Day (one hour class session)

30- No School- Memorial Day


2- Field Trip BAC – 3 Little Pigs

9- Popcorn/Pajama Day (wear PJ’s to school)

(14, or 15, or 16) TBA – Water Day (wear swim wear, bring towel)

17- Ice Cream Social with Dad

21- Last Day of School – VIC-NIC 10am-2pm (child/family activity)

In the Classroom

-Name History

The students have completed their name boards and collage.  Some of the classroom conversations have included- Why is it important to have names? How did you get your name? Do you like your name? The conversations we had were very rich and insightful and we learned about each other’s family and traditions of family names.

- Chicks

We are learning about the life cycle of a chicken by incubating eggs and hopefully hatching baby chicks.  We have been counting the days of incubation and how many more days are left.  The students wrote predictions of how many days it will take for eggs to hatch.  We candled the eggs and saw the shadow of our chicks.  We drew observational drawings of the chick embryo.  The children have been reporting and keeping track of the humidity and temperature of our incubator.

-Story Workshop

We continue with creating stories with the inspiration of materials.  The students are developing their language through stories.  We hope that our field trip to the play- The Three Little Pigs will inspire our own theatrical retelling of the story in the classroom.

-Kindergarten Transition

Vick alumni will be coming into our class to share their kindergarten experience with our class.  As part of our end of year transition, class discussion will include which students are staying on in Room 105 and which students are going to kindergarten.

Thank you for making us feel so special during Teacher Appreciation Week,

Ms. Raven, Ms. Terry, & Ms. Elma


Hi Families!

There is NO SCHOOL tomorrow April 8th for a teacher institute day.
Parent Teacher Conferences are on Wednesday April 13th. There is no school for children on this day and the sign-up sheets are outside the classroom for 15 minute sessions.
Thursday is our Field Trip to the Peggy Notebart Nature Museum/Lincoln Park Conservatory. Attached is a list of chaperones. Your child’s name is listed if you’ve been chosen. We will meet at school at 8:45 and pick-up will be at 1:45.
If you have any questions or comments feel free to e-mail.
Ms. Raven and Ms. Elma

Room 105 Newsletter 3/23/16

 Important Dates

 March 25th-No School (Furlough Day)                                              April 8th- No School (Teacher Institute Day)                                  April 13th- Parent Teacher Conferences                                       April 14th-Field Trip to Peggy Notebart Museum & Conservatory 8:45-1:45                                                                                              April 18th-22nd- Spring Break (See you back on April 25th!)


Playing games has become an exciting part of room 105’s daily life. Children love to play games and are practicing so many valuable math skills and social emotional skills when they join a game. Thanks to all of our volunteers for helping facilitate these wonderful learning experiences during weekly Game Day. 

We encourage you to play The Game of NIM at home. You can ask your children to explain the rules to help develop their language skills. But here’s the gist:
Bottle Cap Game (Game of NIM)- You need: 15 objects (bottle caps, pennies, etc.)
Take turns taking 1, 2, or 3 pennies from the group. But don’t get stuck with the last bottle cap, or you lose!

This game helps develop math skills such as; counting, subitizing (recognizing a small set without counting), and strategic thinking. Ask your child questions such as “How many should I take so I don’t get stuck with the last one?”  “Why did you take that many?” “How do you know that’s 3?” This also helps develop children’s social-emotional skills, by practicing turn taking and coping with disappointment when they lose.

Story Workshop has become a busy part of our week. We are so thankful for all the parents who have volunteered to help teachers document stories on these special days. The work the children are creating is beautiful, imaginative and so wonderful for their language and pre-literacy skills. Children are truly becoming authors and working on valuable skills that will help them become stronger readers and writers. Through encouraging children to create stories with materials we help develop their growing understanding of the purpose and meaning of books and how to create them. Children create, revise and share stories using available materials. Children also meet important goals when they participate in this workshop process, such as:

Using an expanding and expressive vocabulary, (language)
Recognizing and Recalling (cognitive)
Retelling stories (literacy)
Understanding spatial relationships (math)
Exploring visual art as a means of expression (art)

Children are developing their language skills during Story Congress (group share time) not only by presenting their stories, but through participating as an active and attentive audience, the children, make connections, give compliments, learn to ask questions and solve problems through making suggestions.

Example of Nora (4.8 years) working with materials during Story Workshop

Her painting.                               Colored drops in water.

Nora’s stories:
Once upon a time there was a little girl and she saw a volcano. Then the volcano started to erupt. Then she got stuck in the volcano. A friend pulled her out of the volcano, the snake helped her, then all of the animals helped her. 2/24/16

The butterfly girl is sliding on a slide. Then she saw a volcano. Then she got stuck in the volcano. All her butterfly friends helped her. 2/25/16                                                                               Conferences

April 13th will be parent teacher conferences for Chicago Public Schools. There is no school that day.   Sign-up sheets for parent conference will go up the week before.

Looking Ahead

Once we’ve all caught up to the Spring time change, we’ll be moving forward in the classroom with a life-cycle study. We’ll be focused on planting and growing seeds, hatching chicks from eggs, and the metamorphosis of caterpillars to butterflies. We’ll be engaging with nature a lot more now that the winter has thawed so sending kids in clothes that can get a little messy is advised. We are organizing a field trip to the Peggy Notebart Nature Museum and the Lincoln Park Conservatory on April 14th from 8:45-1:45.

Materials for Planting

We’ll be needing some supplies for the upcoming Spring activities, and would love any contribution you can make          Child gardening gloves

Small shovels

Bags of potting soil

Packets of seeds
Small tuperware

Bug containers

Parent volunteer opportunities

Game  helper –  adults bring a game from home (if possible) and supervise playing games in small groups of children (1 hour)

Story workshop helper – adults Record children’s Language in writing  to help children share the stories they create during story workshop (1 hour)

Computer  helper – adult aids children in using computer mouse to refine this skill for future kindergarten assessments (1 Hour or ½ hour)
Chaperone- for upcoming field trip (Full day)

 Room 105 Newsletter                             1/10/16


Happy New Year!   Hope you are enjoying your adorable child calendar!

Parent Child Activity Day*

Please save the date of January 22nd  which is our second Parent Child Activity Day. Parents please plan on coming to class with your child for one hour. 9:10-10:10, 10:30-11:30, 12:30-1:30, or 1:45-2:45.  You will be working on a Bird Bath project for the PTT. The Bird Bath will be auctioned off at the PTT fundraiser. Sign-up sheets are posted at the door.

Additionally, we will be creating a Parent Wish Mobile to hang in our classroom. Parents are invited to write a new year’s wish for their child, and we will hang these wishes in our classroom.  As children learn and work throughout the school day, we would like them to be surrounded by your warm wishes and love.


January  -18  No School (MLK)

                - 22  Parent- Child Activity*                                                    February  -  5   No School (Teacher Inst.)

                   -  15  No School (Pres. Day)

In the Classroom

Winter Mementos- The students are sharing their stories and experiences of winter break. Please return the winter memento bag we sent home so your child can share a story with the class.

 Letter Writing- This quarter we are focusing on writing skills. This week students have been writing the first letter in their name using markers and dry erase boards. We will begin incorporating specific hand-writing instruction and vocabulary- straight line, curved line, short line, long line, slanted.

 Working with Clay- In the studio, the children have been working with clay. The classroom will include clay in our art center and the children will  begin to sculpt 2 and 3 dimensional pieces.

 Story Workshop Days- The teachers will be experimenting by setting up specific Story Workshop Days for the children. On these days, the children will be invited to work in story areas that are conducive to storytelling. Some of the story areas will be: The Butterfly Garden, Water World, Sand Dunes, Color Fantasy. The children’s actions and thoughts will be observed and at times recorded and shared with the class at Story Congress. Story Congress is simply a time the class gathers together to listen and appreciate each other’s stories and work.

 Ramp Project- Room 105 will be embarking on a project on Ramps. Daily, children have been observed creating ramps using tubes, long blocks, and cushions. The children squeal in excitement as cars shoot out with velocity and force. The ramps built by the children have become intricate including bridges and structures that send cars flying. By using videos of the children’s play we have begun to discuss what part of ramp play they would like to investigate and develop. The children’s interest and curiosity will lead us in the development of our ramp project. Some of the ideas/concepts  we may be discussing are:

-measurement, distance   -angle, slope   -design and construction  -motion, speed

-force and gravity   -circumference and diameter  -observation, hypotheses, theory

Stay Tuned.  We may be asking for materials to build and design these ramps.

  Parent Volunteer Opportunities

Please let the teachers know if you are able to volunteer:

-Looking for parents or grandparents to help make storybooks. (cutting and stapling paper to make mini storybooks).  This work can be done at home.

-Computer Parents-we will be receiving new computer in the Spring and we would like  parent(s) to come in and assist in facilitating computer use in the classroom.  This time can be at choice time (30 minutes) or at entrance time (20 minutes) once a week.

-Reading Parent- During entry time (15 minutes) to read storybook to children.

-Game Parent-During choice time (30 minutes) to play a favorite table game with a small group of children.

-Library Parent- (15 minutes once a week, anytime)  to help in school library.

A.M. Choice Time – 9:45-10:40/  P.M. Choice Time – 1:00-2:00

Your 105 Teachers- Ms. Terry, Ms. Raven & Ms. Elma


Room 105 Newsletter


We continue developing Story Workshop in the classroom, starting with learning the concept of telling stories through new and familiar materials and participating in the retelling of child created stories at Story Congress. During this time we look at objectives such as following limits and expectations, and using an expanding and expressive vocabulary. Some of the materials children tell their stories with include water colors, collections (found materials, fabrics), tempera, playdoh, sand, and blocks. The Opal schools from Portland will be visiting this month to help us develop Story Workshop components for our ongoing partnership. We would love your help in further developing our Story Workshop materials. We are currently looking for: collections (buttons, large beads, sequins etc.) natural materials (dried flowers, stones etc.) baby food jars, small vases and tablecloths.

We introduced our Rekkenrak in the classroom this month, which is a wonderful tool for deepening the children’s understanding of math concepts. We work on counting, identifying sets of numbers and numeral identification using a visual reference.. The school is currently working with the Erikson Early Math Collaborative on teacher institute days to develop new and more natural ways to incorporate Math into the classroom.

If you are new to the Barbara Vick community you may be unfamiliar with our Preschool Yoga practices which includes: mindfulness (walking and sound), breath awareness, singing songs, building a sense of community in our practice together and relaxation. Yoga will take place at least once a month for 45 minute sessions. Please ask if you have any questions.
Community Projects

Food Drive

Thank you to all of our volunteers and those who donated to the food pantry this week, the food drive was a major success! We are thrilled to offer so much food for families in need.

Giving Tree

Our classroom will be participating in the Giving Tree. The Giving Tree is a service learning project which supports less fortunate children in need at the Crisis Center of South Suburbia.  Please reference the email sent to parents about this project. The students will collect money after Thanksgiving and sponsor a child in need from the Crisis Center. We would like to raise enough money to provide a Christmas present for two children who are experiencing a crisis this holiday season.

At Barbara Vick, we would also like to support our own families in need.  If your family is experiencing less fortunate times. (Perhaps a family member is unemployed, or not sure if there will be enough in your budget for a Christmas present), please let your teacher know. May we include your child in our school Giving Tree?  All names on the Giving Tree are kept anonymous. We encourage families who are blessed this holiday to sponsor a child on our Giving Tree.


Parent Teacher Conferences will take place on Wednesday November 18th in our Classroom from 11AM-6PM. There will be no school on that day.  Parents are scheduled for conferences.  Ms. Raven’s conferences are in 10 minute increments, Ms. Elma’s are 30 minute increments. The sign-up sheet is located on top of the mailboxes in the hallway. There will be multiple conferences taking place in the classroom, for respect and privacy, we ask that children not be included in the classroom conference.

Field Trip

The entire school will be attending the Alice and Wonderland play Monday November 23rd, to support our Story Workshop and further deepen our understanding of storytelling. There will be only a few chaperones needed for this trip due to cost and limited seating.  Chaperones will be requested by the teachers based on the needs of the children. School will be from 11:00 AM -1:30 PM that day.


We do go outside every day weather permitting (20 degree wind chill and above), please send children with outdoor weather apparel. Please write initials in hats, gloves and scarf tags. If you haven’t already it’s time to switch your child’s spare school clothes with pants and long sleeves.      


Ms. Raven, Ms. Elma, Ms. Terry

Greetings 105 Families,

Next Friday March 13th will be show and tell!
We have a challenge for the 105 class, we’d like them to bring something special that can fit in a pocket. Have a discussion with your child this week about what special item they would like to bring to school and what they will tell the class about their special item.
Reminder: Except for special occasions (Baby Party, objects for our current study, Show and Tell etc.) toys should be kept at home, please remind your child of this as well.
We can’t wait to see how creative the children get with their pocket-sized show and tell items!

January 8, 2015

Hi Parents,

Hope you are staying warm! Just wanted to share a little bit about what we have doing in class….

I am sure many of you have heard about “Baby Town” (the children came up with this name and it is so cute!). What started off as a few children playing with baby dolls in the dramatic play area has turned into something the whole class is interested in. Because there are only seven dolls the children have had to problem solve together to figure out how everyone will get a turn playing with the dolls. They are so kind to one another and so creative in the roles they take on during play. They all take turns pretending to be different family members and usually there is more than one mom, dad, sister, etc.  This week there were several babysitters who take care of babies while the other child goes to play in another area in the room. “Can you watch my baby while I go to the block area?” It really is fun to watch.

Because their interest in babies has lasted awhile, we are going to do a baby study in the classroom.  We had a discussion Monday about what they know about babies. Their ideas and responses were so wonderful and interesting and I wanted to share them with you.

What do you know about babies?

  • They like to be with their mama.
  • Babies need diapers to go to the bathroom.
  • Babies go in a stroller.
  • You have to be really nice to babies. Like you need to touch them with soft hands.
  • Mamas hold babies.
  • Mamas feed babies milk.
  • Baby cute.
  • Babies look at their hands and move them around. A lot.
  • Babies move their feet around.
  • They sleep all the time.
  • Babies cry.
  • Babies can climb up by things like the lamp, but they can’t walk.
  • Babies drink bottles.
  • Babies need kisses and hugs.
  • Babies are little.
  • You need to be really quiet when babies sleep.
  • Babies drink out of sippy cups when they get a little bigger.
  • Babies sit in high chairs to eat.
  • Sometimes they cry a long time and sometimes they don’t.
  • Sometimes they eat peas and sometimes they don’t.
  • Babies like cheerios.
  • Babies crawl.
  • Babies wear tiny clothes.
  • Babies need to be buckled in a stroller because it is safe and then they won’t fall out.
  • Babies like to go to parades.
  • Babies play with toys that rattle.
  • Babies like to lay down with their daddy and mommy.
  • Sometimes they don’t have any hair.

On Tuesday I brought in a little baby stroller, which prompted a wonderful conversation during our play-planning meeting. One of the little boys said he was going to put the baby in the stroller and take him to Panera for a sandwich. Everyone immediately started chiming in and had the most creative and fun ideas of where they wanted to take the babies. The problem was that there was only one stroller. I asked them how we could make sure everyone that would have a turn. There were several ideas but they decided to write their name on a list and use a timer. I had to model it for them during the beginning of choice time but they soon got the idea and were able to use the timer independently.  They would call the name of the next child on the list and that child would flip the hour glass timer over and play with the stroller for five minutes, when the sand was done, the next child on the list had a turn. It was really fun to watch them figure this out while working together.

At the end of the day when we met to review our play the children were really excited about the stroller and where they had taken their baby.  They wanted me to bring more baby things. “What kind of baby things?”, I asked. We made a list of things babies need.

What do babies need?

  • food to eat
  • diapers
  • toys
  • blankets
  • a bath tub
  • a high chair
  • pillows
  • a crib
  • wipes
  • bottles
  • clothes
  • pacifiers
  • car seats
  • play pen

And this is where I am asking you, the parents, to help further our study. If you have any of the items listed above that you would like to donate to the classroom we would be so grateful. If you would like to come visit the classroom and talk to the children as an “expert” we would love it! You could tell them what you know about babies or show them how to buckle a baby in a car seat or how to feed a baby (really anything!). If you have any books about babies that you would like to send it we would love to read them. If you have a baby at home that you would like to bring in to show the class and talk about the class with that would be awesome! Thanks so much for your support. As always, please contact us with any questions or concerns.

November/December Newsletter

Room 105

Dear Parents,

Can you believe it is almost Thanksgiving!? This year has flown by so quickly! The children in room 105 are now settled into our classroom routine and we feel that they view our classroom as a safe place to express their ideas and interact with new friends. It is so nice to watch these friendships develop and grow. We have adjusted our schedule to allow more time for “play planning and review”. Research shows that we can promote the development of thinking and reasoning in young children by allowing them the opportunity to plan and reflect.


When we engage the children in planning we encourage them to identify their goals and consider the options for achieving them. Before we begin choice time (play time) we sit in a large group and ask the children where they will play; with whom; what materials they will use and whether they will need help. We write down the children’s ideas so we can refer back to them later. Writing down their ideas also shows the children that what they are saying is important to us. The children hear each other’s “plans” and can choose to join each other’s play schemes or elaborate on a plan. This gives the children an opportunity to share their ideas and negotiate with one another before beginning play. One day a group of children were planning to take the baby dolls on vacation and a little boy said he wanted to be the dad and then another little boy spoke up and said he wanted to be the dad too. After some discussion the children decided that there could be two dads. The amazing thing about this is that all of this is happening before they actually go play. We are seeing more intentional social interactions in the classroom as a result of these planning discussions.

Planning is more than making choices. Planning is choice with intention.

We have observed such a change in the type of play happening in the classroom. The children are taking on and assigning roles, negotiating with each other and solving problems on their own. The play is more involved and lasting longer. The children are continuing the play over several days. It is really wonderful to watch!


After choice time we meet back on the rug to invite the children to reflect on their play. We remind them of their “plan” and ask them how it went. We try to get them to go beyond just telling us what they did during choice time by asking them what they learned; what was interesting; how it made them feel and how they can build on the experience in the future. If the children did change plans we ask them what they did instead and why they moved away from the initial plan. It is absolutely okay if they moved away from their initial plan, but we want to have them think about why their actions did or did not follow their intentions. This encourages problem solving, decision making and higher-level thinking skills. The children are becoming much more detailed and descriptive when describing their play. It is really fun to engage with the children and learn the ideas behind their actions.

Story Telling and Story Acting

You may have noticed that your child has been bringing home books and stories. The children are really excited about writing stories and becoming authors. During choice time children are encouraged to tell a teacher their story and the teacher will write it down. After choice time and reflecting the teacher will read the story out loud to the group and the author can choose other children to act the story out. This process allows the child’s ideas to come full circle: telling, seeing their ideas written down and finally seeing their ideas come to life. The children love hearing each other’s stories and seeing them come to life. The imagination young children have is truly amazing!

We look forward to hearing more stories. If your child has not come home excited about story- telling, do not worry! We are observing the children in play and will use their play interests as a basis for telling a story.


Now that weather is very cold please remember to dress your child appropriately in a warm coat, hat, gloves, scarf and boots. We will go outside every day for a half hour if the windchill is above 20. Please label your child’s clothing with their name or initials. Clothing items easily get mixed up when twenty children are getting dressed together!  Thank you!

Upcoming Dates:

Tuesday, November 25: Friendsgiving: We will celebrate Thanksgiving with two other classrooms on Tuesday. Our classroom will be making a fruit salad to share with the other classrooms. If you would like please send a piece of fruit to school with your child on Friday or Monday. Thank you.

Wednesday, November 26th, Thursday, November 27th and Friday, November 28th:


December 19th: Last day of school before winter break

Keep an eye out for:

Our Frozen mural! The children are all in love with the movie Frozen. This interest has not waned from the beginning of the year. We are planning a special mural to celebrate their interest. Keep an eye out for it in December!


Thank you to all of the parents who came in with their child on Friday to make their All About Me Books. We really appreciate your support! If you were unable to come on Friday please take your child’s book home this week and complete it at home and send it back in to school. We will give each child an opportunity to share their book with the class this week.  To extend the “All about me” discussions we heard on Friday we are going to read Wendy Ewald’s Book The Best Part of Me throughout the week. This book uses real photographs and words from children who were asked the question, “What is the best part of you?” Examples in the book included: eyes, ears, knees, toes, fingers, hair, teeth.
We will be having this discussion with the children this week. Please talk to your child about what they like the best about themselves at home this week. Keep an eye out for our classroom book as well….

We will also read The Tiptoe Guide to Tracking Fairies this week and have rocks and acrylic paint available in the art area. The children will be able to paint the rocks to add to the fairy table.

We are going to start doing Play Plans this week. Before beginning choice time we will ask the children to draw a picture of what they are going to play during choice time. We will revisit this at end of choice time. This teaches a number of skills including playing with intention, self-regulation, persistence, higher thinking skills, socialization, expressive language and fine-motor development.

*Tomorrow is library so make sure your child returns his/her book if they want to check out a new one.
*Friday will be our first “Fine Arts Friday”

Thank You!

October 2014 Newsletter

Barbara Vick Room 105 

Our classroom has been filled with happy, busy children. We are delighted with the wonderful social interaction that has been taking place. It is so fun to watch the children engage with each other and the materials in the classroom. There is truly a sense of wonder and curiosity in our room right now.

We have been discussing what it means to be a member of our classroom community and what it means to take responsibility for our classroom. The children seem to enjoy being a part of this process rather than having “rules” to follow that the adults made. As a group, the children came up with a list of agreements for the classroom. Their final agreements are meaningful to them and help them to feel a sense of ownership about the decisions made in their classroom.

The Children In Room 105 Agree To:

  • Say hello to each other when they walk into the classroom.
  • Always be kind to each other. (This means sharing toys, using nice words and smiling.)
  • Clean up something if they take it out.
  • Always let friends play. (This is really important because no one wants to be lonely).

We will continue to revisit these agreements and add to them if needed throughout the year.  We were really impressed with what they decided was important to them at this time. It shows that they clearly have a sense of empathy for others, which is wonderful at this age.

Classroom Activities

We continue to observe the children during play to find out what they are interested in in hopes of beginning a project that is meaningful to them. We set up a fairy garden in the classroom and children have been adding natural objects to the table that they brought in from home or found outside on the playground. This has led to many interesting conversations and observations by the children. We have a book making table set up and encourage the children to write down their ideas and create a story. We know that at this age children may not be able to truly “write” down their ideas but we encourage them to try their best. Their scribbles, marks and drawings are as meaningful to them as writing is to us. If your child brings home a book ask him or her to read it to you!

We are going to be doing some in depth reading of classic tales and fairy tales to support the book making and fairy table.

We are going to start exploring different artists and art materials on Fridays. We may study the same artist for several weeks if the children are interested in the work. We will use visual arts, music, movement and dramatic play to develop creativity and exploration. The first “Fine Arts Friday” will focus on the French painter Georges Seurat who founded Neo-Impressionism and the technique of tiny strokes of contrasting color, pointillism. We will view and discuss his masterpiece Sunday Afternoon on the island of La Grande Jatte. The children will create their own masterpieces using the pointillism technique by exploring different paints and colors.

Please dress your child in casual clothing on Fridays as we may get very messy.


We will start taking small group of children into the library once a week (hopefully every Thursday). The children will listen to stories, sing songs and draw pictures about the story read. The children will also be allowed to check out a book. We have a “library board” in the classroom. Each child has their own pocket on the board and when they check out a book the library card from the book will go in their pocket. This is how we will keep track of what book each child has. Your child will be allowed to take out a new book if they return the book they have at home. Only one book is allowed out at a time.


Yoga with Ms. Margaret is starting this month. We will have yoga on Wednesday October 15th and Wednesday October 29th. Please send your child to school in comfy clothes on those days.

Art Studio

The children have been going to art studio with Ms. Kate once a week. They have been exploring natural materials. Check out the documentation board in the studio to learn more about their experiences.

Outside Play

We go outside to play everyday. Please send your child dressed appropriately for outdoor play and make sure that their hats/gloves have their name inside.


  • Monday, October 13th-no school, Columbus Day
  • Friday, October 17th-Parent/Child Activity Day-sign up sheets are on the door. If your child rides the bus please email with a time that works for you. Sessions are: 9:10-10:10/10:30-11:30/12:45-1:45/2:00-3:00. Information to follow.
  • Friday, October 31st-Halloween- FIELD TRIP to the Palos Children’s Farm. Both a.m. and p.m. classes will attend together. We will leave for the farm at 11:45 and return at 2:45. Information to follow.

If you have not done so yet, please email us at vick105@outlook.com so we have your email on file. We will send out newsletters and other information throughout the week by email. Please send in your child’s wooden letter (first letter of their name) if you have not done so. We also need framed family photographs if you have not sent yours in. Thank You!

As always, email or call with any questions or concerns.

Ms. Meg, Ms. Pam and Ms. Raven