Tag: author study

Green Room Author Studies at The International Preschools

This week’s blog post features the next portion of our book/author studies unit at The International Preschools: the author studies being conducted in our Green (3s) Rooms.

The Green Rooms at our 76th Street and 86th Street locations have been working hard on their author studies. Each class chose an author that they are focusing on. Throughout the months of February and March, the children have been reading books by that particular author. Scroll down to see some photos of the great literacy-based work occurring in our Green Rooms!

Mo Willems is the chosen author in the Green 2 classroom at 76th Street. The class is focusing on Mo’s Gerald and Piggie series of books. Here, Piggie (in puppet form) visits a Green Room friend’s home. The children were asked to document Piggie’s travels via photos, drawings, and writing, and send the finished pages back to school to share with friends. By the time you read this, each child in Green 2 will have welcomed Piggie into his/her home!
Eric Carle is the author of choice in 76 Green 1. The children learned that Eric Carle is an author and an illustrator, and studied his illustration methods closely. They learned that Eric Carle used collage, as well as layers of materials from paint to paper, to create his drawings. Here is a sample of a multi-step project that the children constructed in honor of Eric Carle, using layers of paint, paper, and glue.
86 Green 2 is also learning about Eric Carle! After reading Eric Carle’s book, The Very Busy Spider, the children created a collaborative spider web with yarn. The children worked their fine motor muscles while looping and threading the yarn through the tiny holes.
Another Eric Carle author study, this time with 86 Green 1! The children in this class are experimenting with artwork inspired by Eric Carle’s illustrations.
86 Green 3 read all of the books in the Harold and the Purple Crayon series. Here, the children are voting as to which of the books they liked best.

Be sure to return next week, where the Red Rooms will be showcased through their annual Color Unit!

Interested in seeing more classroom footage? Take a peek inside an IPS classroom by visiting our website.

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IPS Pre-K and Junior K Book Studies

Last week’s blog introduced the literacy study units that are occurring at The International Preschools in February and March. This week’s blog will spotlight the units taking place in our Pre-K (4s) and our Junior K (4s/5s) classrooms.

The children in these classes are focusing on either a chapter book series or on a singular chapter book. Art projects, science centers, dramatic play centers, math, music, and more carry the book’s theme throughout the classroom. This type of unit showcases the play-based learning that occurs inside of our school every day!

Scroll down for photos and descriptions of the books chosen by our Pre-K and Junior K teachers.

76 Pre-K 1: Zoe and Sassafras Chapter Book Series by Asia Citro

76 Pre-K 2: Dinosaurs Before Dark (from the Magic Tree House series by Mary Pope Osbourne)

86 Pre-K 1: Don Freeman Author Study

Each year, IPS hosts an online auction for our annual Spring Benefit. Due to COVID-19, we will not be celebrating in-person this year…but the auction lives on! One of the projects that is auctioned off are journals that the children contribute to. In these journals, the children take home a stuffed animal character from the book/books that they are reading, and write/draw what the animal did with the child during their stay. 86 Pre-K 1 is conducting an author study on Don Freeman, who wrote the book, Corduroy, among others. Each child is making his/her own COVID-safe paper “Corduroy” to take home for adventures, photos, and writing!

76 Pre-K 3: My Father’s Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett

In honor of 76 Pre-K 3’s reading of My Father’s Dragon, each child made his/her own striped dragon using construction paper, paint, and paper.

86 Junior K: Stuart Little by E.B. White

The Junior Kindergarten at 86th Street is reading Stuart Little by E.B. White. Each child will take a mouse (a.k.a. Stuart Little) home to embark on a journey with the Junior K students. We are looking forward to learning about Stuart’s journey, which will be documented in their classroom journal!

Next week, be sure to visit the IPS blog to learn about the Green Room (3s) author studies!

Interested in learning more about the IPS curriculum? Read all about our play-based learning philosophy on our website!

Want to join the IPS community? Apply online today!

Literacy Studies at The International Preschools

The children in the Green (3s), Pre-K (4s), and Junior K (4s/5s) classrooms at The International Preschools have been working on literacy studies throughout the months of February and March. The Green Rooms primarily choose one author to focus on, while the Pre-K and Junior K classes choose either a book/book series or a chapter book/series to concentrate on.

At our 76th Street location, the Pre-K 3 children are reading My Father’s Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett. Here, they have drawn, colored in, cut out, and labeled the animals and characters in the book for a classroom bulletin board.

As in all of our play-based learning themes, the classrooms are transformed to reflect the topic at hand. Dramatic play centers, discovery centers, and book shelves will exhibit books by a particular author or topic. Art projects and writing/drawing activities will represent characters and plot lines from the books being read. This way, the children will fully immerse themselves in the books they are reading, and usually, better understand the text and concepts being taught.

Green 2 children at our 86th Street location create spiders to coincide with their Eric Carle author study. The spider is the main character in Eric Carle’s book, The Very Busy Spider.

One may ask, are chapter books age-appropriate for the Pre-K and Junior K children? Will the information and stories be difficult for them to understand? The answer is no, provided that you pick the right books…which our teachers have certainly done. The chapter books and chapter book series that have been chosen by our teachers this year all include illustrations, which help provide the children with a visual source for plot lines and characters. At the same time, the lesser amount of illustrations allows for children to use their imaginations, creating their own versions of what the characters and the settings in the stories look like. With less pictures for visual comprehension, chapter books require children to fine tune their listening skills, as they will need to rely on their receptive language to understand what is going on in the story being read aloud.

Be sure to return for next week’s blog entry, which will spotlight the Pre-K and Junior K classes’ work on their book studies. (The Green Rooms’ author studies will be highlighted the week after.)

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Fathers and Special Friends Read-Aloud: Winter 2020

Fathers and Special Friends Read-Aloud in a classroom at our 76th Street location.

The International Preschools is in the middle of its annual Fathers and Special Friends Read-Aloud.  For this event, male relatives and friends of our students are invited into the classrooms to read to the children.  This person can be a father, brother, grandfather, cousin, uncle, or special friend.

While the program was originally founded many years ago to identify male figures as reading role models for young boys, it has evolved simply into a wonderful opportunity for cherished caregivers and loved ones to provide a literacy-based activity for our preschoolers.

 

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76th Street Museum Night at The International Preschools

76 Pre-K 1 created a replica of the Empire State Building for their New York City-themed book study.

Families observing the Pre-K 3 exhibit at the 76th Street Museum Night.

On Tuesday, April 9th, The International Preschools’ 76th Street location hosted its second annual Museum Night for the Green Rooms (3s) and Pre-Kindergarten classes (4s).  Museum Night first took place in 2018, as a Green Room function. Families were invited to observe artwork, photos, and other projects created during each class’ curriculum theme.  Pizza was served and children were invited to dress up for this special evening celebration!

This year, our Pre-K classes joined the Green Rooms in displaying work from their winter author and book studies. Read on to find out more about this special event!

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Fathers and Special Friends Read-Aloud at The International Preschools

Each year, The International Preschools hosts an event called the Fathers and Special Friends Read-Aloud.  It was created ten years ago to foster a love of reading in young children.  Because, in the past, mothers and female relatives had often made up the majority of guest readers, the Fathers and Special Friends Read-Aloud provided an opportunity for fathers, as well as other male relatives and friends (brothers, grandfathers, uncles, neighbors, etc.), to model positive feelings about reading to preschoolers.  Currently, our Read-Aloud occurs in conjunction with the author and literary studies that take place in the Green (3s), Pre-K (4s), and Junior K (4s/5s) classrooms during the winter months. Continue reading →

Author Studies and Chapter Books in the Pre-K (4s) and Junior K (4s/5s) Classes

At The International Preschools, literacy and pre-reading skills are at the forefront of our interdisciplinary, play-based learning curriculum.  During the months of January, February, and March, these skills are highlighted via our school-wide author and book studies.

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Author/Book/Character Studies in the Red (2s) and Green (3s) Rooms

harold-and-the-purple-crayon
A scene from Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson…

purple-finger-painting
…and the Red Room children at 86th Street, reenacting Harold’s drawing adventures at the art table!

The author study season is well underway at The International Preschools!  Classrooms at all three locations are thoroughly immersed in learning about their chosen author, book, or character.  This curriculum theme is an effective way to promote early literacy among young children.  In keeping with our play-based learning approach, each classroom will create interdisciplinary activity centers about the books being read there.  This method will assist in children retaining as many skills and as much information as possible about the books at hand, while having fun at the same time!

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Author Study Curriculum at The International Preschools

"Crazy Sock Day" in honor of Dr. Seuss' Fox in Socks.
“Crazy Sock Day” in honor of Dr. Seuss’ Fox in Socks.

Jan Brett, Dr. Seuss, Andrea Beaty, Leo Lionni, Eric Carle, Karma Wilson, Todd Parr, Mo Willems…what do all of these authors have in common?  They have all been featured author study subjects at The International Preschools as part of its play-based learning curriculum.

Each year, students at The International Preschools embark on an author study during the months of February and March.  The curriculum is approached in different ways, based upon the children’s age level.  In the Red Rooms (2s) and Green Rooms (3s), one author is chosen, and a variety of his/her books are read.  In the Pre-K (4s) and Junior K (4s/5s), a chapter book is selected by the teachers, and a chapter is read every day in class by parent volunteers.

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