The Cooper School Daily

Happy Holidays!

Happy DongZhi Festival!
Kindergarteners spent the week looking at and learning all about DongZhi Festival, the celebration of the Winter Solstice in China! Students made new discoveries about delicious DongZhi dishes, listened to new music, and dug deeper into different holidays around the world. Kindergarteners were most excited to learn about the annual festival in Sanmen, China. Here, the community gathers each year to celebrate the holiday with a large festival including traditional foods, music, and artwork. Students celebrated one tradition in particular, where each family in the village decorates a portion of a dragon sculpture. For the festival, each family’s piece of the dragon is combined to create a giant work of art, symbolizing unity. This annual tradition gained some notoriety in 2004 when it was recognized as the world’s Largest Handmade Dragon. This week, Kindergarteners worked on a large project of recreating this beautiful tradition and decorating portions of a dragon sculpture of their own. Students wrapped up the week by proudly teaching their older peers all about DongZhi and showing off their dragon sculpture creation. Kindergarteners were thrilled to share all of their knowledge and then to learn from their peers about Hanukkah, Christmas, Los Posadas, St. Lucia Day, Winter Solstice, and Kwanzaa! 

How-To Be a Kindergartener
This week, Kindergarteners were thrilled to continue investigating How-To Writing. Students explored mentor texts and discovered that How-To Writing is written by breaking things down step by step. Kindergarteners are getting a lot of practice breaking down every step you need to take to do familiar activities, like playing Everybody’s It on the playground or taking care of a pet. Writers eagerly took what they learned about How-To books to their own writing to teach us about all sorts of topics they know all about, from playing soccer to dressing like a princess. Students joined forces to write a class How-To book on a new topic, using pasta to make jewelry! Students learned how to dye noodles assorted colors and celebrated their bravery in Writing Workshop by creating Noodle Necklaces of their own!

Our Neighborhood Walk
Excitement was in the air as Kindergarteners took their first field trip this week! Students explored The Cooper School’s surrounding neighborhood as a part of our Buildings Study. Our small architects used all they have learned about buildings to compare houses, and consider why these houses are built differently. Kindergarteners were challenged to a Scavenger Hunt, looking for specific and fun items we might find in the neighborhood. Students were so excited to share all of the shapes and materials they recognized!

Important Dates:
December 21-January 4: Winter Break (No School)
January 4th: Teacher Workday (No School)
January 18th: MLK Day (No School)