Sunday, December 8, 2013

Elf on the Shelf, St. Nick

Our topic this week was Welcoming the Elf on the Shelf and St. Nick.

We started our week right away meeting our Elf.  Once we met him, we read his note on the board (by sounding out some letter sounds), read his book, and then: he needed a name!  We took a variety of options and then we voted and graphed our choices.  The one with the most votes would be our Elf's name.  Tiger wins!  We then watched the movie, the kids loved it!

On Monday, we also "sewed" our stockings and stamped our hands to have stockings to hang by the fire.  Lacing was a little tricky, but once students got it down, they had the most adorable stockings ready for St. Nick.

We also worked on making snowmen, putting three circles we cut out in size order, small on top, then middle, and then big.  We then used scrap paper and a whole punch (for the first time) to decorate or snow men.  

Tuesday Tiger was hanging out on our dry erase board and wrote nice in magnets.  N is our letter of the week, and he was sending us a message.  We worked really hard at being Nice.

Wednesday, the silly geese were being sassy so Tiger was trying to tell Santa on them.  The geese tried to cover it up, but we still know!  "Put the geese on the naughty list!"

We worked on an early reader of winter clothing and their colors and we will work on reading it in the next week.  We also started reading and practicing our Reader's Theater for Reading with the Stars.  

We also began a measuring activity. Students need to count how many big snowflakes they are tall and then take small snowflakes around the room and measure various objects. This also worked on counting, the concept of measurement, and writing the numbers.  Students are off to a great start in these areas.

It is so great to see the students using the writing center to write letters to Santa and to Tiger.  Any time we can get them to use writing tools, try to get letter sounds, and get the mechanics of writing (left to right, top to bottom, etc) is wonderful!  Tiger takes the notes to Santa when they leave them in Tiger's mail box.

Thursday, Tiger was hanging out by our stockings that were stuffed with love from St. Nick.  He wanted his own stocking too!

The story of St. Nick:
Nicholas' parents died when he was just a teenager. His parents left him a lot of money which made him a rich young man. 

Nicholas heard about a man who had lost all his money.  He had three daughters.  This family was so poor they had nothing left to eat. They were very sad. A daughter washed her stockings and put them in front of the fire to dry. Then all of them went to sleep.  In the morning the daughter saw a lump in her stocking. Reaching in, she found a small, heavy bag. It had gold inside! Enough to provide food for the family. Oh, how happy they were!

The next morning, another bag with gold was found. Imagine! Such joy!
And the next night, the father planned to stay awake to find out who was helping his daughters. He dozed off, but heard a small "clink" as another bag landed in the room. Quickly he jumped up and ran out the door. Who did he catch ducking around the corner?

Nicholas, the young man who lived with his uncle. "Nicholas, it is you! Thank you for helping us—I hardly know what to say!" Nicholas said, "Please, do not thank me. Do not tell others about me."
Nicholas continued helping people. He always tried to help secretly. He didn't want any attention or thanks. When there wasn't any food, he found wheat; so no one went hungry. He always helped people in trouble. All his life Nicholas showed people how to love God and care for each other.

Everyone loved Nicholas. After he died, they told stories of the good and kind things Nicholas had done. Sailors took these stories about Nicholas everywhere they went. Some of the stories were about his special care for children—helping and protecting them when danger threatened. And so more and more people learned about good, kind Nicholas. They wanted to be like him. He is an example of how we should live.