Bring a picture of a South American animal and know something about it.

Topic: South America

What about the South American continent?

The value is justice, which is being fair and being right.

Outside we’ll play soccer and tag.

The songs we’ll be singing are Zippity-do-dah, Seventy-six Trombones, Rock Around the Clock, Lean on Me, de Colores, and I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing..

Our art activities are poncho, pan flute, cut paper abstracts, gaucho hat, and string art.

Creative dramatics will be to pretend to be a South American animal.

For body development, we’ll work on coordination by dancing in the South American way. For motor development we’ll do proprioception exercises with stork stance, bolo twist, navigation reach, and rising sun.


There are so many appeals these days to “get involved”, especially from school districts. For us at the school who are so aware of how very much our parents care about their little ones, it hardly seems possible that at elementary or secondary schools parents turn into insensitive blobs. My guess is that it’s more a case of not realizing the incredible influence that parents have on their children and then not really having some 1-2-3 steps for what to do. Virtually all research into influences on children’s academic performance confirms that the single most important influence on a child’s success in school is the parent and home environment. The second most critical factor is the child himself. Then trailing third is the educational environment. There is a major shift happening in education today that is putting the child in charge of her own learning. Schools are moving toward teaching the child to learn rather than teaching the thousands of facts that are readily available in today’s information age. The basic premise is that every child can learn and, in fact, is eager to be successful in learning to cope with her world.

As we put first things first, the parental responsibility is awesome. The child watches the parent to learn what is important. If the parent focuses on the child, then the child learns that he is important. If the parent expects that the child is excellent, brave, and kind, then the child will expect the same of herself. If the parent expects that the child is shy, not too good at math, and a little clumsy, the child understands almost intuitively that those qualities are expected of her. If the parent is excited about learning to read and about how two raisins and three raisins added together make five raisins, then the child will be excited that the things he is learning at school are also important to his parents. If soccer, dance classes, and swimming lessons are the major points of interest at home for the child, then his work at school is not validated, and the child must conclude that academics are not really that important.

When parents understand the school environment and form an active partnership with their child’s teachers, the child’s success can be enhanced and learning becomes more confident. With that self-confidence and higher self-esteem, the child has more security to take risks and to move forward to new challenges and opportunities. When parents join their child in exploring the world and being intellectually curious, it’s an exciting growth process, one that opens our world to new and higher visions. It is very possible to make things better.

In General

Gratitude – From Ted Danson (of TV program Cheers): “Parenthood is the thing I’m most grateful for. I’m madly in love with my children. Having a kid opens your heart up to the universe – all of the suffering, all of the joy, all of the pain, all the failure, all the guilt. Everything gets opened up when you’re a parent.” Our salute to those who have chosen this path.

What We’re Wondering – One of the critical thinking questions this week will be “Why is it important to have lots of different kinds of plants and animals” The follow-on to that is “What about different kinds of people?”

Know How to Dance the Rumba or the Samba? – We could use some coaching on the South American dances – rumba, samba, lambada, or salsa. Please speak up if you can demonstrate any of these.

Parents Group – Due to a scheduling conflict next month’s meeting has been canceled. If necessary we schedule another date otherwise we will meet again on June 21.

  Peanut Free – Some of our students are allergic to peanuts and other nuts, sometimes just the smell can cause a reaction. As a reminder please don’t send foods containing nuts in your child’s lunch. In addition when sending food for celebrations please avoid the frosting topped items muffins could be another option.