Thursday, June 22, 2017

An Invitation to Create

While wandering about our playground we became inspired to bring more nature, color and life into our classroom.  Nature provides everything we need to make paintbrushes with different textures, lengths, and patterns inspiring our budding artists to explore their creativity and imagination freely. Along with our handmade paintbrushes from the playground we collected day old flowers from Trader Joe's to explore even further the many ways to create art with natural materials. 

An open invitation to create: Blank paper, bundled rosemary brushes, exotic grasses, tree branches. 

Roses make the best stamps!

Creation station. 

Still art drawing.

Pedal pulling for our window art. 

Our finished collaborative wall: cut outs from the painted paper along with our paint brushes and flowers. 

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Self-Portraits Using Loose Parts in KDH

This summer’s theme for camp is “Discovering the World Around Us- where young artists meet budding scientists”. In part of discovering the world, we need to discover OURSELVES! There is a saying in Judaism, “The world was created for ME!” That means that Hashem had each of us in mind when creating the world.

Here in KDH we spent our first week creating self-portraits using a little imagination and a lot of loose parts! Our kids are natural abstract artists and were able to create self-portraits with a ton of emotion and expression.
"I like it because I can make silly faces!" said one student.

 What are loose parts?
Loose parts are everyday materials such as stones, stumps, and boxes that can be adapted and manipulated in many ways.  Using loose parts encourages open-ended learning, creativity and imagination.  This allows children to create in any way they choose, without a specific set of directions and using everyday material.

 Throughout the summer, we hope to incorporate loose parts in more of our art and activities as we learn about nature and the world around us.  We look forward to an amazing summer!
Love, Morah Yael and Morah Jainea :)

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Specialty Activities with Morah India

Every day we head up to the third building for our class's special activity slot with Morah India. She prepares a wide range of activities that touch on different skills. We've done gross motor exercises, cooperation and self-regulation games, and art experiences.

Yoga promoted awareness of our space, our bodies and our breathing.

Working together we shook a parachute, following Morah India's directions of stop and start. 

 We did some stretches and then followed Morah India through an obstacle course.

 Art and science were integrated in a tricky activity where we blew droplets of watercolors with straws to watch how they moved. We added drops of different colors to see what happened when the colors mixed together.

More creativity to come next week!

Friday, June 2, 2017

Summer Reading, Summer Fun

     It's official, summer is almost here.  We tucked our class' copy of It Looked Like Spilt Milk back in a book box, where we found it so many months ago.  Class is over, but reading never is.
     So, parents and friends, enjoy your child's copy of the book, and go visit the library (and the book boxes in your neighborhood!) to investigate so many other good stories.  This children of Kitah Gimmel were continuously clamoring for more and more books!  Fiction and non-fiction.  Old stories and new stories. Books during Circle, books at snack, and book at lunchtime . . .
     Enjoy the summer, the fun, the water-play and, of course,  the books!

Morah Susan, with Morah India and the Yeledim of Kitah Gimmel


Thursday, May 18, 2017

KDH and Eric Carle

As a Reggio inspired school we strive for exploration and learning that is child directed. Some years it is obvious immediately what the children have a special interest in and other times it takes a few months to evolve.

Cassie loves penguins (at least she did until her grandfather told her that they bite). She ignited the class's interest in them. We explored them for a while but were ready to move on. Then, class mom, Lynne Glenn planned our trip to the High Museum to see the Eric Carle exhibit and do Eric Carle style art.We began our preparation for the outing by reading the Eric Carle books that were featured in the exhibit. The children took an immediate liking to his books and his art. Morah Sara created a matching game for the children to use when touring the museum.

Meanwhile in the classroom, the children listened to The Very Hungry Caterpillar in the listening center (thank you Jaci Effron!). They noticed the pictures of the food. At the same time we were saying the brachot/blessings on all our food. We copied the layered painting and collage style art of Eric Carle and made a brachot place mat.  For Purim the children put together a Purim Purim What Do You See book similar to the Eric Carle illustrated and popular, "Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See." Fathers Day included Eric Carle art on a penguin.

We continued to bring Eric Carle books into the classroom. We teachers love them! The writing and illustrations support all learning domains. Carle addresses social emotional issues with books about friendship and feelings of people and animals! Cognitively, the descriptive language, learning about numbers and animals, patterns, repetition and sequencing and singing are a few of the benefits of immersing in  these books. Gross and fine motor are strengthened in books with movement and copying Eric Carle's art. The children loved the humor in the book, The Nonsense Show. The Red Fox exposed us to science.

As the year drew to a close, we planned with the children their year end performance. An Eric Carle based show seemed to be the obvious choice. We needed a script with songs, costumes, and props. We could get all that from just three books. We planned and practiced.

We do an exit interview with each child. When asked, "What book/books are your favorite?", many of the children answered, "Eric Carle books." Asked what they especially enjoyed during the year, quite a few mentioned the trip to the High Museum to see the Eric Carle exhibit. At lunch one day this past week, after reading together, we asked the children why they liked the books and what they learned from them. Almost every hand shot up.  The children were very eager to share their thoughts on Eric Carle's books.

Ruth: I like to read them. I like the pictures.
Pearl: I like when the hungry caterpillar turns into a beautiful butterfly.
Freeda: I like the collages.
Noa: I like the different colors.
Levi: I like the words and the pictures.
Cassie: I like The Nonsense Show.
Yoni: I have a game of the Hungry Caterpillar.
Max: I also like The Nonsense Show.
Izzy: I learned about numbers.
Freeda: We counted sheep in The Nonsense Show.
Sam: I like painting like Eric Carle.
Ruth: I like the repetition.
Hannah: My favorite book is The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I loved reading it at the Listening Center. 
Reed: The animals are interesting.
Ari Shacham: I liked the pictures.
Ari Effron: I like the collages.
Dovid: I like the colors, words and collages.
Shaya: I liked the animals.
Freeda: Eric Carle does not make it very real. He uses his imagination.
Henia: I liked everything that Eric Carle made!

The children touched on everything beneficial, fun and funny in the Eric Carle experience.

Children: you made 2016-2017 the Year of Eric Carle.

Morah Ruth
Morah Sara
Morah Gail