Friday, December 14, 2018

December 10-14, 2018

It's so hard to believe that Christmas is almost here! We have been so busy in Pre-K learning about Advent, creating some amazing Christmas crafts, practicing for our big debut in the Christmas show, and making some special surprises for you! Can you believe that the boys and girls are still working hard on their lessons on top of all that? They truly are a wonderful class to teach!

We are looking forward to seeing you all on Monday night, December 17, for the Christmas show! The show begins at 6:30 pm in the gym. Get here early to get a good seat! Please make sure your child goes to the bathroom before you arrive. Please drop the children off in the Pre-K classroom between 6:00-6:15 pm so we can get their costumes on and get them lined up for the show. Your child should be dressed in a white turtleneck, nice bottoms (pants/skirt), and dress shoes (no sneakers, please). The Christmas fun will continue on Tuesday, December 18, for Grandparents' Day! Please send your child to school in the same attire from Monday night (pack sneakers!) and drop them off at regular arrival time. The boys and girls are looking forward to a special morning with their grandparents!

The Pre-K angels are ready to sing!

Has your child been counting syllables at home? This week, we learned that syllables are parts of a word and the Pre-K students had so much fun clapping out and counting syllables in a variety of
words. Take a look!

The last day of school before Christmas break is Wednesday, December 19. It is a regular full-day of school for the students and there will be HCA+. We will be having a special pizza lunch that day. Half-day students are invited to stay for lunch if you wish and will be dismissed at 12:30. Classes resume on Thursday, January 3, 2019.

Just a reminder that we are collecting items for Providence Center. All items should be sent into school by Monday, December 17. Here's a great video from some of our 7th graders as a reminder for what to send in:

Over the break, we hope you and your child take the time to relax together! Since we will be out of school for so long, it will also be a great time to review some skills we are working on in the classroom:

  • Letter sounds
  • Recognizing numbers and counting quantities for 0-20 and beyond
  • Counting from 1-30 and beyond
  • Putting on coats and zippering independently
  • Putting on shoes independently 
  • Simple chores around the house
  • Reading books together every night

But most of all, remember to play and have fun!

I saw this post on social media and found it especially fitting:

A Letter from a Teacher

Dear Parents at Christmas,
I know at this time of year there is pressure to create a perfect, magical Christmas. I know that you want to give them the magic of Santa and ensure he brings the best gifts - which sometimes means a bit of stress for you. But I am writing to tell you a secret. I'm writing to tell you that, every January, when children come back to school, they tell me all about the Christmas holidays. They tell me about the days when everyone stayed indoors and watched TV. They tell me about the walk in the freezing cold to get McDonald's. They tell me about staying at Grandma's and then being excited when you came back from work. They tell me about how you let them snuggle in your bed. They tell me how you played games and took them swimming and forgot their towel. They tell me about a visit to a friend's on New Year's Eve and how they stayed up so late. They tell me how they loved staying in their PJ's some days and trips out other days. They mention their gifts, but for them, Christmas is you and your love, routines and feeling safe. You are their favorite thing!

Merry Christmas! 

Best wishes to you and your families for a joyous holiday and a happy and healthy new year!

Friday, December 7, 2018

December 3-7, 2018

For Community Time last Friday, the entire school came together to make place mats for "Meals on Wheels" recipients. Students were grouped according to their HCA families and worked together to choose and create either a snow scene, a wreath, or a Christmas tree for their place mats. All the boys and girls enjoyed spending time with their families and made some wonderful creations that are sure to bring joy to people this holiday season.

Fine motor skill development is vital in any early childhood classroom. While technology has been able to provide us with many valuable tools to assist a child's learning, research has also shown that it is hindering children's fine motor skill development. In our Pre-K classroom, we use a variety of materials and lessons to help the boys and girls develop and strengthen their fine motor skills. 

Mira is practicing spooning.

Lily is pouring sand slowly and carefully.

Charity is tweezing pom-poms.

Foster is fastening snaps.

Blaine is fastening buttons.

Scarlett is fastening buckles. 

Marcus is practicing lacing.

Jordyn is placing beads.

Kellan traced and is punching out Europe
for his continent map.

Austin is using the Metal Insets.

Vincent is coloring - and holding his crayon so well!

Nora is completing the "Write the Room"

Braela is practicing stringing beads and showing
quantities from 11-20.

At home, you can provide your child with some opportunities to practice their fine motor skills. Here are some ideas:
  • Cutting
  • Pasting
  • Playing with Play-Doh
  • Zippering coats
  • Coloring
  • Putting puzzles together
These ideas, along with many others, will strengthen your child's fine motor skills, develop hand-eye coordination, and refine the pincer grasp - all things that will help them learn to write!

Our Weekly Reader this week was about bears and hibernation. The boys and girls learned all about what bears do in the winter - and decided that they could never hibernate for that long! The Pre-K students also learned about measurement. They knew that measuring meant they would find out how tall or how wide something was. As a math activity, we measured things in our classroom. The children loved estimating and then measuring how tall or wide each thing would be.

The chair is 2 paws tall.

Our friend, Kellan, is 5 paws tall.

The shelf is 4 paws wide.

The rug is 11 paws wide.

The Pre-K students brought their worksheets and bear paws home and are ready to measure things around the house! 

Yesterday, we celebrated St. Nicholas Day! We learned that St. Nicholas lived a long time ago. He was a bishop who helped to care for the poor and needy. He secretly left money and gifts for families in their stockings or shoes. Nicholas inspired others to give to others and remember those in need.

We gathered with our friends in Nursery and Kindergarten to watch a movie about St. Nicholas. The boys and girls left one of their shoes in the hallway during the movie, in the hopes that St. Nicholas would come! To our surprise, we heard some bells ringing and went out into the hall to see. St. Nicholas had come and left us all a surprise in our shoes - just like he did for the boys and girls years ago! 

Operation Advent

Throughout the Advent season, Holy Child Academy will be collecting materials to support The Providence Center in the Fairhill section of Philadelphia. The Providence Center offers the hardworking families of this neighborhood education, love, and possibility.

Providence Center Flyer

Please send your items into school by Monday, December 17.  

  • The HCA Family Christmas liturgy is this Sunday, December 9, at 10:00 am in the MPR. We hope to see you there!
  • Show and Tell will be on Friday, December 14. Please send your child in with something to share that has to do with Christmas time!
Pajama Day was so much fun!
Thank you for your support of CHOP!

Friday, November 30, 2018

November 26-30, 2018

Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Last week, the Early Childhood Division celebrated together - Charlie Brown style!

We began our celebration by going to the Kindergarten classroom to watch A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. We told the children to pay close attention to what was happening and we would talk about it at the end.

In the movie, they had a great feast of friendship with the food they could find: bread, pretzels, popcorn, and jellybeans. We discussed that even though Charlie Brown wasn't able to provide a traditional Thanksgiving meal, he wanted to celebrate with his friends with what he had.

Now it was going to be our turn to celebrate with our friends - Charlie Brown style! We dressed up like the friends who shared the first Thanksgiving - the Pilgrims and Native Americans.

All of the EC students traveled to the Pre-K and Nursery classrooms to share our feast.

The boys and girls prayed together to thank God for their friends and their food and enjoyed a delicious feast together.

As the boys and girls said, "This is the best day ever!"

Now we are busy getting ready for our big debut in the HCA Christmas show! The Pre-K students will play the role of the angels and have been practicing so hard to learn their songs. All children need to wear a white turtleneck, nice pants/skirt, and dress shoes. We have the angel costumes for the children to wear over their clothes. 

There will be two performances of the Christmas show: 
  • Monday, December 17, at 6:30 pm, for parents, family, and friends.
  • Tuesday, December 18, at 10:00 am as part of our Grandparents' Day celebration.
More details will be sent home soon!

  • Scholastic Book Club orders are due on Tuesday, December 4.
  • Show and Tell will be on Thursday, December 6, and will be something that begins with /n/.
  • Save the date for the Family Christmas Liturgy on Sunday, December 9, at 10:00 am. 
  • Next Friday, December 7, will be Pajama Day at HCA. For $1.00, your child may wear his/her pajamas to school. All of the money collected will go to the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

Have a great weekend!

Friday, November 16, 2018

November 12-16, 2018

Last Friday's Weekly Reader taught us about veterans. We learned that veterans are people who have served our country and helped to protect us and keep us safe. 

We then gathered together with our friends in Nursery and Kindergarten to make cards thanking our veterans and members of the armed forces for their service.  Through Operation Gratitude the cards will be mailed to veterans and troops serving around the world. Our hope is that we might even receive a letter back from some of them!

Show and Tell continues to be a Pre-K class favorite! It is amazing to see the students' confidence grow each week as they describe their clues for their classmates. Their public speaking skills are developing more and more and they love sharing their items with their friends.

Charity, Blaine, Nora, and Marcus found the Pp
Sandpaper Letters and shared that Pp says /p/.

Lily shared her picture and Kellan shared his police car.

Foster shared a pot and Jordyn shared Play-Doh.

Mira shared a pig and Vincent shared a pencil.

Scarlett shared a pear and Cory shared a penny.

Austin shared a pillow and Braela shared a puppy.
Our next Show and Tell will be on Wednesday, November 28. The topic will be something that starts with /b/.

What a surprise snowfall we had yesterday! The boys and girls cheered as the looked out the windows and saw the snow falling. So, of course, we had to take them outside for a few minutes to catch some snowflakes!

Teachers and students had so much fun!


  • Wednesday, November 21, is a half day of school with dismissal at 12:00 noon. We will have a Thanksgiving Prayer Service at 9:00 am and will be honoring our third grade teacher, Miss Hoffman, for 20 years of service to HCA. Please join us if you are able!
  • There will be NO SCHOOL on Thursday, November 22, or Friday, November 23, for the Thanksgiving holiday.
  • Please remember to send in a seasonal change of clothes for your child if you have not already done so.
Have a great weekend!

Hope you and your families have a wonderful Thanksgiving!