Message from the Principal
Dear Merryhill Families,
April has arrived, and we’re ready to SPRING into action! We’re back on track with celebrating and enjoying time together as a community!
This month, we will celebrate the children with our WEEK OF THE YOUNG CHILD celebration on April 11th. This kicks off a week long event, as we enter a Seuss-tastical world the children will enjoy! Each day will have a theme and special activities planned for the children! Please keep an eye out for special spirit days posted on the calendar! Also, we will be having a school-wide picnic on April 23rd, so please be sure to bring a sack lunch for your child this day.
Speaking of celebrations, the next couple of months will include some of their own! Mother’s Day Tea in May, Father’s Day in June, and Pre-K graduation on June 18th! I am so excited to have the children show off all their hard work during their performances at each event!
Please join me in congratulating Ms. Jill on being recognized as a national candidate for our Nobel Learning Communities, Inc. Teacher of the Year. She is halfway through the process, and our fingers are crossed for her. I think this honor is not only amazing for her, but it puts our campus on a national forefront for our academic standards and requirements being implemented by our truly amazing teachers! I will be sure to keep you posted on her progress!
I could go on for days about what amazing projects and experiences we have planned in each of the classrooms, but I do not want to spoil what is in store! However, I will say to keep an eye out for our newest classmates — the BUTTERFLIES — that the children will watch grow throughout this month!
As always, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact me at your convenience. My door is always open, and I’m only an email click or phone call away!
Jherica McEndree, Principal
Calendar of Events:
April 3: School Egg Hunt (10 – 1030 AM)
April 6-10: Scholastic Book Fair Week
April 10: Cultural Study: Leonardo Di Vinci
April 11: Week of the Young Child Celebration (1030-1230)
April 13-17: Week of the Young Child
Monday: One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish
Tuesday: Fox In Socks (Wear Crazy Socks!)
Wednesday: If I Ran the Circus!
Thursday: The Sleep Book (PJs & Stuffed Animal)
Friday: Oh, The Places You Will Go!
April 22: Earth Day
April 23: National Picnic Day — Bring a Sack Lunch
National Take Your Son/Daughter to Work Day
April 24: Arbor Day
April 27: National Babe Ruth Day (Wear a Baseball Hat Today)
April 29: National Zipper Day
April 30: Cultural Study: Dia de Niño (Children’s Day in MX)
Save the Dates:
May 8: Mother’s Day Celebration (300-430 PM)
May 10-15: Teacher Appreciation Week
May 25: School Closed — Memorial Day
June 12: Father’s Day Celebration (300-430 PM)
June 18: Last Day of Care for 2014-2015 School Year
June 18: Pre-K Graduation Ceremony
News from our Classrooms
Dear Infant Parents,
Last few months have been very exciting here at the infant room; we have met a few new friends and their families, welcome! We are very lucky to see our infants grow every day. We can’t wait for the warmer weather which means more walks in our buggy wagon and more activities outside as well.
On Friday April 3rd is the “School Egg Hunt.” Since our infants are too young to do the egg hunting, we planned an activity instead Eggs in a whole box: We will use a sealed shoe box with different sized holes cut out, the children will practice their fine motor skills by putting in plastic eggs in the holes!
On the second week of April is the “Scholastic Book Fair” which will end Friday the 10th. Don’t forget to join us on Saturday the 11th for our Week of the Young Child event. We will have a carnival here at Merryhill and this event starts at 10:30 am! We will be reading Dr. Seuss books such as, “One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish” On Tuesday the 14th the children can wear their craziest pair of socks! On the 16th wear your PJs to school and bring your favorite stuffed animal!
Lastly, we would like to welcome the newest members to our classroom , Henry and Addison, we are very excited to have them join us!
Infant Room Teachers
Dear Toddler Parents,
We hope you all had a wonderful month of March; we know the toddler class had an amazing time! We are all very excited to bring in spring as well as the month of April! We have so many things planned out and so many activities to present our friends with. We are looking forward to expanding our vocabulary even more with the use of books, flashcards, songs. We will continue encouraging participation and repetition of simple words and actions from the stories we read aloud during circle time. Our sign language will be Spring related signs such as flower, bird, tree; we look forward to showing our friends!
April has many things planned out for us such as Easter and our school egg hunt! We also celebrate our annual Week of the Young Child which will be very fun and include many of our favorite Dr. Seuss books, be on the lookout for the fun spirit days! We also get to celebrate Earth day on April 22nd! Another exciting celebration to look forward to is national Picnic day on the 23rd so please bring some lunch to enjoy outside in addition to the school lunch if you would like!
-Ms. Raquel, Ms. Ally, Ms. Savanah and Ms. Jacky
Beginner 1 Classroom
We had a wonderful month of March. We learned about Clifford’s Birthday and the children enjoyed many of the activities that surrounded that celebration. This month we will do many more fun activities with our friends. To begin the month, on April 3rd we will have the Egg Hunt in our school. Then we will have the Week of the Young Child Celebration. We know this is going to be another month of fun filled learning with the children focusing on mastering new skills such as beginning to name familiar objects inside as well as when we are walking outside to see spring time.
We will talk about how to take care of our Earth on Earth day later in the month. We will recycle plastic bottles, bags, and papers by doing activities with all that to protect our Earth. Also we will do projects like creating some flowers using paint and tissue paper as well as a marble paint activity. We will use sand during outside play and will go for more walks. We will do circle time and read some books like “Tale of Peter Rabbit,” and will talk about the stories. We will review our colors and shapes numbers in English and Spanish. During outside play we will use chalk to make butterfly and flower paintings. We will have a lot of fun during the month of April. Also don’t forget to take home your children’s folders and please make sure your children have a weather appropriate change of clothes in their cubbies.
-Ms. Li and Ms. Francis
Beginner 2 Classroom
The longer days and nights of March have transitioned our friends wonderfully to begin the new month of April. We will get the chance to focus on the children’s independence and give our friends the chance to experience the beautiful earth we live on. We will have an Easter party! Keep an eye out for an Easter Egg Signup Sheet! We would also like to welcome our new teacher to Beginner 2 class, Ms. Kayla!
This month in honor of the UC Davis Picnic Day we will have one of our own as a class. We will have a day of picnic blanket making, counting Ants and even have a picnic on the grassy area of the playground. We ask that all of our friends are here on time to enjoy this fun day of a yummy picnic, face paintings and water games! The third week will be the week of the young child! Our Beginner II friends will be focusing on Dr. Seuss. We will have a week of focusing on Dr. Seuss and a few of his books like fox in socks and Oh, The places you will go. We have so many fun things going on this month and can’t wait to share such a great month with our friends!
Easter is right around the corner and what better way than to have a week of fun activities that will be based on Easter! We will have days of Egg science and have our friends see if a real eggs and a plastic Egg sink or float. The children will get their hands a little messy and use food coloring, spry bottles and white crayons to decorate a paper Egg. With all this egg talk we thought it would be great to have our friends focus on the letter E. The children will get the chance to make a list with their teachers with different words that start with E and even get to decorate the letter E with cutout eggs. The Beginners II class has shown that they can recognize their names so for our Easter egg hunt our friends will be looking for their names.
To end such a great month we will be learning all about how to take better care of Earth! We would greatly appreciate if all Beginners II parents can save and bring us Egg cartons the ones that are made out of cardboard so we can plant flowers for the Earth! This month we will focus every day on how we can help Earth. To incorporate the wonderful Earth we will practice reduce, reuse and recycle. For the whole month we ask that our friends bring in one or two things that we can throw in the trash or recycle and we will encourage our friends to only use one paper towel after washing their hands. We will have our friends help make the earth out of paper Mache so if you have any newspaper just laying around we will gladly accept it. This month is full of subjects that will broaden our friends little minds and can’t wait to see how our friends adapt to the month of April!
-Ms. Lyssa, Ms. Jalisha, and Ms. Kayla K
Hello Intermediate Parents,
We can’t you believe it is April already, it feels like this year is just flying by. Last month the children had so much fun learning about St. Patrick’s Day, Dr Seuss, and spring. The children also improved their counting skill and are now counting to 30 as well as recognizing numerals to 15.
This month we will continue to work on our old skills as well as introduce new skills. We will work on counting to 40, identifying numbers that follow one another using a calendar or number line, writing their first names, and recognizing letters and their sounds. This month we will be doing many fun science activities that involve plants and insects such as planting sunflowers, fruits, veggies, raising ladybugs and butterflies. The children will practice charting as we chart how big the plants grow every couple days. While planting and charting our plants we will practice using our April Spanish words of the month which are: el arbor (the tree), la flor (the flower), el jardin (the garden) and (el agua) the water.
The week of April 13th-17th we will be celebrating Week Of the Young Child here at Merryhill. This week will be Dr. Seuss themed with many fun, exciting learning opportunities. These activities will be out of the ordinary and may be a little messy at some times. We will take caution to keep the children clean, but just in case please send your child in clothes that are ok to get messy. We will also be putting up a sign up sheet for some items that we will need for this AWESOME week.
There are a couple more important dates to remember this month. April 3rd we will have an egg party and egg hunt at school. The book fair is coming back the week of April 6th-10th, every book you buy goes towards are school! April 11th we will be having a Week of the Young Child event at our school with many fun activities for the whole family to enjoy. April 22nd is Earth Day, we will be making recycle boxes this day for our class. April 23rd is National picnic day and Take Your Daughters/Sons to Work Day!
We are very excited for the month of April to come and watch the children learn new things and master reoccurring skills. If you have any questions please feel free to talk to either of us. Have a wonderful month of April!
—Ms. Kayla H and Ms. Linda
April is here and that means Easter, spring projects and Week of the Young Child. This year our Week of the Young Child will have a Dr. Seuss theme. We will be reading lots of his books and doing related projects. For one of the projects each child will need a pair of plain white socks any style (try to get ones that are not too thick) as they will be creating some fun designs on them. During Week of the Young Child we will have a crazy sock day and a pajama day. Also be sure and come to school on Saturday April 11th for fun activities to begin our Week of the Young Child.
The first week of April, we will learn about a plant’s life cycle, and how vegetables and flowers grow. Each student will have a peat pot in which they will plant a seed and when it starts growing they can take it home to replant it, pot and all in the ground. We will also be learning the Spanish names for many vegetables. We will also talk about the different food groups and what healthy foods are.
Other themes we will have this month will include a butterfly’s life cycle and Earth Day. We have many fun projects planned for both themes. We hope to have caterpillars in our room that we will watch grow from caterpillar to butterfly and then we will have a special day where we release them.
Pre-k is having a lot of fun with sight words and they can already name quite a few. We will be learning more sight words and filling our journals with them. The students will also be sounding out different words and trying to spell them on their own. We have also been having fun with simple addition and subtraction. They love doing math games and we will be playing more. We will be doing more activities dealing with greater than, less than, and equal to.
—Ms. Cristina & Ms. Stacy
This month our Links to Learning Spanish curriculum will introduce new “Abril” vocabulary: Mini poster was sent home in your child’s Links to Learning folders at the end of March. We will be focusing on learning how to refer to clothing items, as well as reviewing items found in our home and Greetings.
In mathematics we will be concentrating on counting to 100 independently and counting by fives to 50. We will also continue to familiarize ourselves with the clock, identifying the hands and numbers. We are having a lot of fun with this! The children are understanding the concept amazingly fast.
With the arrival of Spring, we will be moving along in our phonological journey to focus our attention on isolating and identifying sounds, grouping and manipulating sounds, and blending and segmenting sounds as well. My students surprise me every week with their constant progress. We already have some early readers on our hands!
The students will be introduced to the final skills from our Social Emotional curriculum, Learning in Kindergarten And Making New Friends in Kindergarten. These skills are going to be extremely important to our children in just a few short months. Learning these skills and talking with your child about the up coming changes may alleviate some of their anxieties in the near future.
I encourage all of you to browse through the book order forms! We are getting close to the last order for the year. Thank you, and have an awesome April!
—Ms. Jill and Ms. C
News from the Education Department
Appreciating the Wonders of Mother Nature
Spring is here and Earth Day is right around the corner, providing a wonderful opportunity to connect children with nature and reinforce the importance of preserving and protecting the world around us.
Our Links to Learning curriculum uses hands-on activities to cultivate a deeper connection to the earth and foster academic, physical and social skill development.
Below are activities we implement in our classrooms to get children excited about nature, as well as activities and books to read with your child at home.
- In the classroom: Our teachers provide natural objects, such as leaves, pinecones and flowers for the children to see and touch. We help children associate words with the concrete objects they represent.
- At-home activity: Allow your child to experience different textured fruits, such as an orange, watermelon and cantaloupe. Talk about what he sees, smells, tastes and feels.
- Recommended reading: Colors from Nature from PlayBac Publishing and The Earth Book by Todd Parr
BEGINNERS (Ages 2-3):
- In the classroom: Around age two, children begin to understand interdependencies in nature. For instance, they learn that ladybugs feed on insects that are harmful to gardens, trees and shrubs. On Earth Day, many of our students have the opportunity to release ladybugs to help local gardens.
- At-home activity: Take a walk outdoors with your child and play a game of “I Spy.” Ask him point out objects found in the springtime, for example a red flower, a blue bird or a colorful butterfly.
- Recommended reading: Biscuit’s Earth Day Celebration by Alyssa Satin Capucilli & David T. Wenzel and The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
INTERMEDIATES (Ages 3-4):
- In the classroom: As our Intermediates gain a greater understanding and appreciation for how living things grow, the class may adopt a pet such as a fish or bunny. Students develop math, science and language skills by measuring the pet’s food, observing the pet’s behavior and habitat, and learning new vocabulary. Research shows that when children have the opportunity to care for animals, they practice nurturing behaviors that help them interact in gentle ways with people also.
- At-home activity: Create a small garden and allow your child to help you plant and water seeds, either outdoors or indoors. Ask him to predict what the plant will look like by drawing pictures in his journal. Check the plant regularly so he can observe and measure changes in growth. Discuss the importance of watering and caring for the plant.
- Recommended reading: Our Earth by Anne Rockwell and the poem “Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take the Garbage Out!” by Shel Silverstein
PRE-K/PRE-K 2 (Ages 4-5):
- In the classroom: Teachers encourage our older preschoolers to reuse recyclable materials in fun and unconventional ways. For instance, our students use cardboard boxes to create a castle, milk jug lids to sort and match, and plastic bottles to create beautiful, unique artwork.
- At-home activity: Set up a recycling station using cardboard boxes, and label each box with the words “metal”, “plastic” and “paper”. Throughout the month, ask your child to help sort your family’s recyclables by placing the items into the correct box. Explain that recycling is just one way that we can be kind to the earth. Ask him to name a few other ways, such as conserving electricity, picking up litter and planting a garden.
- Recommended reading: A Tree is Nice by Janice May Udry and The Lorax by Dr. Seuss
We create a path for lifelong learning by providing numerous opportunities for children to study and explore nature. These hands-on experiences lead to growth in all areas of development as students transition into elementary school and beyond.
– Lauren Starnes, PhD- Director of Early Childhood Education