The FUNd Stuff at PNA!
by Jelsea Lemanski | PNA 1st Grade Teacher
Compound words, word sorts, alliteration, scooping, poetry, vocabulary, literature - these are just some of the ways your child has been exposed to words this week. Immersing students in a language rich environment is imperative for their acquisition of new and more complex vocabulary. We may think words such as 'dawn' and 'dusk' are simple words. However, for a child who has not been exposed to them on a regular basis, they are new and unknown.
Students need to be continually flooded with new words and have them used on a regular basis in story telling, read aloud stories, conversation and writing. For example, we are reading Charlotte's Web at the end of each school day. This book has so many opportunities to flood a young mind with new descriptive words (jubilee! runt! dejected! enchanted!) and it's pure joy to see them absorbing these words and rolling them over in their young minds. But it is not merely enough to read these lovely words, give a brief description of them, and then move along. We must find opportunities to use these new vocabulary words in our daily life.
Students this week were exposed to not only a variety of rich vocabulary in our read aloud stories, they were also introduced to compound words and parts of speech. I wish we could all feel the excitement that our young scholars feel when they were made aware that we have names for words! We explored proper and common nouns, adjectives, and verbs - and then used their new knowledge to create a word bank that they could draw from in their writing. To see their language and vocabulary development from the first week of school to the first week of December is just wonderful! They are developing confidence and structure in their sentences, paying attention to detail of letter formation, proper punctuation, and correct capitalization. However we mustn't only limit our assessment of their skills to observing their writing and reading. When we give them opportunities to use their new skills informally, they really thrive! Students loved playing Gingerbread Compounds and were learning new compound words without even realizing they were nearly teaching each other! It is this independence that we hope to foster in PNA students; the ability to independently take control of their learning and enjoy the process of doing so.
Aside from all of our learning in the classroom this week, we also participated in PNA's wonderful winter concert. It was enchanting to see our students come together and so joyfully sing and perform their hearts out. Nothing quite gets me in the holiday spirit as much as seeing a room full of families and children sharing a common theme of gratitude and community. I was so proud of all our students from the very youngest to our oldest for being so dedicated to their performance!
Dusk outside PNA on Thursday was just beautiful - a perfect setting for the winter concert!
Many weeks of hard work and practice learning new songs and instruments culminated in a delightful Winter Concert, where family, friends, and classmates enjoyed beautiful music.
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Postcards from the Classroom
Take a look at the exciting activities students were involved in last week!
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#GivingTuesday Thank You!
A HUGE thank you to those that supported PNA on #GivingTuesday. Our students have a special message for you all!
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Link your Fred Meyer rewards card:
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On your first visit to smile.amazon.com, you need to select Pacific Northern Academy from the list of charitable organizations before you begin shopping.
Pick.Click.Give. allows Alaskans to donate a portion of their Permanent Fund Dividend to causes they care about statewide.
While applying for your PFD online, your can choose to Pick.Click.Give to Pacific Northern Academy. All donations are tax deductible and donors will receive tax documentation from the State once their donations have been processed. Permanent Fund Dividend applications are available from January 1 to March 31, though Alaskans may choose to add or adjust their pledges online through August 31.
Coming Right Up...
January 1st - Pick.Click.Give!
January 21st - 24th - Brown Bag Talen Showcase (More information to come)
Just One More...
Many Thanks To
John Hardwick and Ral West
As always, our continued success is shared with the people and companies that support us.
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The FUNd Stuff is a bi-monthly (or so) publication from the staff, students, parents, and teachers of PNA. Want to know more about anything we've highlighted here? Get in touch! (907) 333-1080 or firstname.lastname@example.org