Wednesday, October 26, 2011

News From the Forest

Ranger Lincoln
This week's Ranger is Lincoln.  He is ten-years-old and he was born in Chapel Hill. His family includes his mom, dad, and my sister. He has a dog, a goldfish, and a cat. The things he likes to do when he is at home is watch tv shows and play sports. His favorite food is chocolate. His least favorite food is stew. His hobbies are playing sports, playing with my friends, and playing with my sister.  When he goes on vacation he most likes to go on his swim team trips to Myrtle Beach. His dream vacation would be to go California. Lincoln is really good at swimming. When he grows up right now he would like to be an Olympic swimmer.

Notes from the Teachers:

  • Our Lower School Halloween celebration is this Friday, October 28th. In the morning we will go on a hay ride around the campus. Your child may bring a costume to change into at lunch/recess time. After lunch recess we will parade through the Middle and Upper School in our costumes. (We ask that students not bring in fake swords, knives, or any type of weapon that may go with their costume.)  After the parade students will enjoy this year's Halloween play, put on by the Lower School staff. Forest Class will enjoy Halloween refreshments after the play. A special THANK YOU to all of the parents who are sending in treats and/or volunteering to help out Friday afternoon. 
  • Just a reminder next Wednesday, November 2nd is a noon dismissal day. 
  • Lower School Picture Day is next Thursday, November 3rd in the morning. 
  • Carolina Friends School Book Fair is coming up at The Regulator on 9th Street in Durham on Saturday, November 12th and Sunday, November 13th. Each unit from the school will have a "wish list" of books that classes or libraries would like to have for their classroom use. The books that are on these lists will be at the Regulator Book Store. We invite Lower School families to purchase any of these books and dedicate them to your child's classroom or the Lower School Library. Your child received a green handout on Monday with more information about the Book Fair.
  • Forest Class Laundry Parents - Thank you for helping out with our classroom laundry each week. We have noticed our laundry could probably be washed every other week. So as soon as our schedule is complete, a new schedule will be sent out which reflects an every other week laundry routine. 

Beautiful Crayfish Paintings

Stop by our classroom and view the beautiful crayfish gallery created by our Forest Class artists!

iPad Math Apps Recommended by Forest Class

During our small group math we are exploring addition and subtraction. It is important for students to have automaticity of basic addition and subtraction facts. There are several iPad apps that will inspire students to practice those facts. 

During our Media/Tech time today students tried out different math apps on the iPad. Here are a few of their favorites: 
  • Motion Math
  • Math Bingo
  • Zoom
  • SumsStacker
  • Math Magic
  • Math Ball
  • Balloon Pop
"Motion Math is awesome!" according Anton and Mateo. Motion Math gives students practice identifying fractions and decimals.

"Math Bingo is fun because you collect bingo bugs," Ryan said when asked about his favorite app. This app allows students to practice basic facts in addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division, while trying to achieve five in a row. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

Welcome to the Spooky Forest

Forest class is ready for Halloween! We had an awesome time this afternoon decorating the classroom for Halloween. I always enjoy seeing the kids so excited about decorating their classroom. You see a real sense of teamwork and pride come out in the kids.

The Lower School will celebrate Halloween this Friday, October 28th. Students are welcome to bring a costume to change into during lunch/recess. After recess we will parade through the Middle and Upper School. The teachers are cooking up an entertaining play for the kids that will follow the parade. Forest Class parents will be putting together some festive refreshments for the class to conclude the day. 

We'll make sure to post some pictures of our fun on Friday. But until then, enjoy these pictures from our decorating adventures today and stop by and see the room in person...if you dare!

Preparing to hang the Halloween paper chain - a Forest Class tradition. 

Spooky Forest Class entrance.

Trying out the fringe at the doorway. 

Adding the finishing touches to the window decorations.

Paper chain factory hard at work.

Skeletons like Macs, too.

Everything must be decorated!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Continued Work With Place Value

We have concluded our unit on number sense and place value. Here are a few resources your child could use to continue sharpening their knowledge of numbers.


Place Value Game

Place Value Puzzler

Manny's Rumba - Base Ten Practice

Behind the Blob

Number Machine - PBS Kids

Football Math - Place Value Game

iPad Apps: 

Place Value by Joe Scrivens, $0.99

Motion Math 
The basic levels are free. This app also includes negative numbers and decimals.

Friday, October 14, 2011

There Will Be Dancing!

We hope everyone had a great week! Enjoy some photos from our dance class yesterday. We used yoga dots, everyone's favorite!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Ranger of the Week:
This week's Ranger is Taylor. She is 9 and a half years old.  Taylor was born in Durham, NC.  Her family includes; her dad, her mom and herself.  For pets she has a dog named Maxy.  The things she likes to do best when she is at home are sing and dance.  If she was stranded on an island she would most like to have her family with her.  Her favorite food is grilled chicken.  The food she dislikes the most is squash.  Her hobbies are singing, dancing and being crazy.  When she goes on vacation she most likes to go to Ohio.  Her dream vacation would be to go to France.  When she grows up, right now anyway, she would like to be a hair stylist.

Mark Pett Visits the Lower School

Mark Pett, the author and illustrator of the book, The Girl Who Never Made A Mistake, visited the Lower School this morning. He read this book to us and then gave us the chance to make our own mistakes! Mark showed all of the students how to turn a scribble, which most people would see as a mistake, into an illustration. Check out some pictures from today's event.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Crayfish Projects Begin

Here is some dinner time chat for you! We began our crayfish projects this week. At the end of each science and social studies unit, we typically ask students to create a project to demonstrate all they have learned. To complete our crayfish study, we are tapping into the different learning styles and intelligences by offering the following project options. Students may present what they have learned by creating an:

  • iMovie
  • Book
  • Website
  • Dance
  • Visual Arts piece
Some students are choosing to work with a partner or a small group, while others are going solo.  We have been impressed by the creativity and excitement present during our Project Time this week.  
These projects allow our students to demonstrate a deeper understanding of the content we have been studying.  Along with presenting their knowledge and observations of crayfish in their project, we are asking our students to notice examples of the type of project they would like to create out in the world. We want students to look at authentic presentations in the world, a mentor, and say, "I like the Animal Planet clip about pandas, and I would like to create my iMovie piece with an interview and close-ups similar to that piece." or "I notice this website has five menu options and only uses one word for each menu option. I want my website to be like that one." While it is more challenging to find a mentor piece when it comes to dance choreography, we have managed to find one! Annie Dwyer, our wonderful dance instructor, will be taking the students who have chosen to create a dance piece to the Upper School this week to observe her Advanced Dance class.

Seeking mentor pieces/text is something the students are becoming familiar with in their language groups. We constantly ask them to notice things about the type of text they are trying to create. These mentor pieces/text become the models for students as they work to create a piece which grabs the attention of their readers/audience. Studying mentor pieces strengthens our students ability to communicate their ideas and their observation skills. 

We can't wait to see the outcome of their crayfish projects! We'll keep you posted. 

Monday, October 10, 2011

Meet Author and Illustrator Mark Pett

Author and illustrator Mark Pett will be visiting Carolina Friends School this Wednesday, October 12th. Mark will be talking to the Lower School about his new book, The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes. As you can imagine,
 we are thrilled to have the opportunity to meet a published author and illustrator.

This opportunity has been brought to us by Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill. To order signed books for your child, please visit their event website: 

You can also learn more about Mark Pett at

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

News From the Forest

The Forest Ranger this week is Levi.

This week's Ranger is Levi. He is nine years old. He was born in North Carolina. His family includes his mom,  dad, and younger brother, Micah. He has two cats, Copper and Sebastian. The thing he likes to dow when he is at home is play with his brother and play video games. His favorite food is his dad's spinach, dad's chicken parmesan, and ice cream. The food he dislikes the most is raw eggs. His hobbies are building, playing basketball, and taking pictures. (Check out his blog which showcases his pictures.) When he goes on vacation he most likes to go to Bald Head Island. His dream vacation is to go to China. Levi is really good at playing video games. When he grows up right now, he would like to be a video game designer. 

Notes from the Forest Teachers
  • Parent-Teacher Conferences are Thursday, October 20th and Friday, October 21st. If you have more than one child attending Carolina Friends School  you should have already been contacted by the Center office to schedule your conference times. In the next few days you will receive information from your child's small group teacher to set up a conference time. We look forward to meeting with you about your child's progress!
  • Don't miss Parent-Teacher Coffee Tea on October 11th  from 8:20 to 9:20am in the Lower School Multi. Please stop in for a snack and beverage and a chance to mingle with teachers and other parents in an informal setting. This  event is brought to you by your Lower School Liasons: Lillemor Ross, Lisa Hess, Richard Pierce, and Katy Brown
  • If you have extra shoeboxes, wrapping paper rolls or paper towel rolls, please consider donating them to Kathy for a project. You can send them in with your child to Forest Class and we will make sure Kathy receives these items. 
  • We are entering jacket and coat season. Please consider putting your child's initials or name inside of their jackets and coats. It is easier to return lost items to the owner if we can find the person's initials or name on the inside.