Weeks 37 and 38: Lots to Celebrate
And just like that we have reached the end of the school year. The Early Learners have shared endless laughter, countless hugs and high-fives, and occasional tears together this past year. They have taken risks with their peers by their sides, encouraged each other to persevere and keep trying when working through something challenging, and celebrated each others' accomplishments. I could not be more proud of the students that I have gotten to know over these past 38 weeks and look forward to watching them continue to grow at Linden or heading about their experiences elsewhere. I invite you, the reader, to take a minute to reflect on the ways in which you've seen these students grow this year and to find a quiet moment this summer to share just how proud we are of them with the Early Learners. I hope that you enjoy this final photo story of the year and have a wonderful summer. I will see you in September!
A comes into class this morning and immediately asks is she is able to make artwork for her dad for Father's Day. She asks how to write "love and care", and then paints a beautiful picture to accompany those words. I'm sure any parent would feel special receiving such a thoughtful piece of art.
A beams with pride after finishing a structure that was incredibly challenging to build. Starting off, A declared "I've never done this before so it might take me some tries to get it right". She persevered as the 3D figures kept falling over while she worked to stack 3D figure on 3D figure, and she never gave up. K celebrates this accomplishment with A, and praises her for the effort she put in.
At the end of this morning's learning centres time, K and G both share stories that they have written with their classmates. G's is about loving someone forever, and K's is about inclusion at a school. The other students are patient as K and G read through their books.
K and A want to write the same story during Writer's Workshop this morning. A give K tips on how to draw people the way that she draws them, and then K helps A sound out words that are more challenging. These two make a good writing team!
CERES this week is all about electricity and electric currents. The students each make their Playdoh into a long and thin piece, and then they connect them all together around the table. We discover that Playdoh conducts electricity when it is all connected, and is able to turn on the "Power Ball", and the "Power Ball" goes off when the connection is broken. Each student gets the opportunity to break the connection, and then rejoin it, to explore the properties of a circuit.
A and K work together to see if they can get their light to turn on. A watches K clip the alligator clip to the metal wires on the light, because we have learned that metal is a good conductor for electric currents.
M and G show off the electrical device that they have successfully wired to work. They connected a power source (battery pack) to a device (motor) using alligator clips. If they can successfully tackle these electrical basics, what kinds of more complex things will they be able to do later on?!
The Early Learners are showing off their big grins this afternoon because they are excited to be making birthday cards for Sarah and surprise baby shower cards for Soteira. Together they generated different messages that we could include in the cards, and then add both drawings and stickers to accompany the kind words.
Jean brought back some of the samples of bird wings that she borrowed from FLAP, an organization that she volunteers with. K uses a gentle touch to feel the smaller wing, and G compares the large, owl wing to the length of her arm.
This afternoon we are playing Bird Bingo with Jean, Linden's Director of Admissions. There are so many birds that the girls recognize, but there are even more that are new and unfamiliar to them. The girls watch carefully for five-in-a-row on their individual cards, but they also help each other find the called birds each round.
Sarah, our student teacher (and Linden alum) is back for her final morning with us. It is her birthday today, and we gifted her a wonderful book, "The Day the Crayons Came Back". We enjoyed all of the time that we were able to learn with Sarah, and wish her the best of luck as she continues on in her undergraduate program at Queen's University.
A and G work on creating gifts for their dads for Father's Day. A starts with a ribbon frame, and then she used our alphabet book to write "sun" in the middle, and is finishing her work off with some yellow paint because "yellow is a sunny colour". G is inspired by A's frame, but then she adds a drawing in the middle of hers.
It is our second annual Portfolio Day, and A is thrilled to share all of her learning with her parents. We are so grateful to all of the families who were able to take time out of their busy schedules, whether it was with us this morning or at home another time, to listen to their Early Learners talk about their learning and share their portfolios.
P shares her portfolio with M, a grade 2 student. The two girls reminisce about all of the fun that they have had together this year, and all of the interesting things they have experienced and learned. M even helps P read some of the teacher-added text through her portfolio to help them gather a full picture of her year.
A drags a fallen branch up to the top of the hill near the playground so no one gets hurt while rolling down the hill. Thanks A!
The Early Learners and grade 1-2 students enjoy some homemade snacks and favourite books on a picnic blanket in the park. There is no better way to celebrate all of the learning these girls have done this year than to get outside and spend time together.
After a hot June day, the rain has finally started. K, P and A cheer as it pours down on their heads, and they are excited to dance around in the rain to cool off.
For a "last day in the classroom" surprise, the Early Learners got to decide the schedule for the morning. It was no surprise that they wanted to go to the park and then have learning centres in the classroom. Although drama class and literacy centres received a few votes, they were overruled in the end. At the park, G spots a caterpillar on the slide and calls over her friends to take a closer look. A, G, and K discuss whether or not they should pick it up with their hands, but together they decide that it is probably better to just watch the caterpillar and not touch it.
P shows off her strength on the bars at the playground. She is practicing holding herself up on these in preparation for the big monkey bars.
N pushes her doll in the swing while we are at the park. She takes care to make sure that her doll has its legs in the holes and has a comfortable place to lean its head.
K brought in a Pride flag and was excited to incorporate it into her play during learning centres. Her and G dressed up and marched around the classroom, telling the other students that they were at the Pride Parade. N wanted to join in toward the end, and she enjoyed marching with them around the room.
G is loaded down with all of her work from the year, so she decides to wear her birthday lantern on her head instead of carrying it. Heads can come in handy when you've got too many things to carry.
K signs Z's yearbook on our final morning together at Linden. Thank you to the Yearbook Club for all of their hard work putting the yearbooks together and distributing them to everyone before the year is over.
Before heading down to the Harbourfront to catch the boat, we had one last visit from the Alvéole bee keeper. She showed the Early Learners and grade 1-2s how healthy the bees were, and she even pointed out the queen bee for them to see. We are so grateful for all of the learning that Alvéole as provided us with this school year, and we look forward to learning more as the hive expands in the fall.
N loves testing out the different ways in which her body will move during recess, and she giggles with joy the entire time.
P helps K replant her carrots into smaller containers so that she can take them home to keep growing this summer. After they are done with the planting, the girls love how the soil feels to dig their hands through, and they don't mind getting a little dirty in the process.
We are all set for our big adventure and wave goodbye to the spectators on shore.
A and G relax onboard the boat and sign their friends' yearbooks.
P and N make song requests to the DJ onboard the boat. If I had to guess, they would either be requesting "Timber", "Let It Go", or "Moana".
The Early Learners and Grade 1-2 students perform a rendition of "ABC" at Celebration to Greet the Summer. Watch the full performance using the link below.