Thursday, January 6, 2011

"Sleepover Under the Stars" Overview

I have been pretty honest about my lack of background in Science. However, in first grade "Sleepover Under the Stars" is our BIG event. It started out as a fun event where students wore their pajamas, made pillows with their parents one night at school, and brought in bears made with their families and then enjoyed fun sleepover-type books and activities. In an attempt to put more of an academic and family focus on the event, first grade teachers over the years have worked to turn the "fluff" into more meaningful "stuff". Because of the hard work of last year's first grade teachers (featured in the picture at the top of this post), the event has turned into a multi-faceted extravaganza that includes a family night where students and their families come for a family dinner and then watch a movie outside under the stars. There are several telescopes available for families to enjoy. "Homework" during the week asks students to go outside at night and observe the night sky with their family. The families are also encouraged to make a pillow together that the student can bring in for the big event.

On the day of the "Sleepover," the Resource teachers (P.E., Music, Art, Character Education, Media Specialist) direct centers for the day around the sleepover/solar system theme after the students parade through the halls in their pajamas and enjoy a breakfast full of fun and excitement. As the next two weeks unfold, you will see several posts about the various events.
Each grade level at our school has a BIG event. In Kindergarten it is the annual Pow Wow around Thanksgiving which also includes a 5th grade component as 5th graders present their Native American projects. Each grade level event includes a Parent/ Family Night and then a Presentation day in which parents can attend or participate with their children. These annual events are favorites. Sometimes teachers complain because of all the preparation time, but as someone often explains, "The children may not remember anything about their first grade year except the great time they had at the nigh time movie with their family or learning about the solar system." These special days are memory makers.

For more specific information and resources, check out the first grade wiki, Science-Sleepover which will direct you to the "Sleepover Under the Stars" wiki.

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