Sunday, May 10, 2020

The Last Class from Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin"

The theme of the class is change. By looking at the change of a seed to a plant, a tad-pole to a frog, an egg to a chicken, and a caterpiller to a butterfly, Mrs. K prepares her class for the change that comes between May and next September.

Mr. K got a little choked up behind his camera (his phone) as he filmed this last class. He remembers the day he and Mrs. K shot the short video in the preschool classroom with hopes of returning to that room before the end of the year, just as we had hoped the same for all of the students at Calvary Christian Schools. We began filming classes in "the cabin" not knowing the pattern of those classes would measure time for two months, but it has been very special, and we will miss it.

The remainder of the preschool schedule involves a zoom class on Wednesday and a special surprise for Friday, May 15.

Remember, You can go back to all of our classes by visiting my website.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin" L-M-N in the Kitchen

Mrs. K was wanted to try out a recipe for "Monster Cookies" and this L-M-N lesson was the perfect setting for it. Baking in the kitchen is also the perfect setting to review the five senses because they all come into play in the simple act of making these cookies from scratch. The receipe is included. If you push pause at the portion of the video, the list of ingredients is short and sweet... literally. At the end of filming this class, I heard my wife's knees say thank you. It was the first class (of 16 so far) where she remained standing from start to finish. It's is also the only episode since leaving the school building that does not begin with the "trademark" Cozy Cabin opening, which will return with the Friday's class.

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin" I-J-K

In this class the letters I, J, and K are introduced as well as the sense of TOUCH. The story is "Just Itzy," about a young spider just going to "spindergarten" who is trired of people calling him "Itzy Bitzy" as in ("...climbs up the water spout..."), but he also learns that sometimes it 's the younger brother who saves the older brother.

Thursday, April 30, 2020

Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin" G-H, May Day

Hello, Preschool Parents,

It was fun to see your kids in the Zoom class on Monday (and some of you as Mr. K and I delivered signs on Wednesday and Friday morning). Today is May Day, and after introducing the letters G and H and modeling several HATS I teach a way that your child can make a paper hat which conveniently converts into a simple "May Basket." Our story is "The Litte Red Hen" told by the hen herself (who paraphrases Carol Ottolenghi's retelling of the old story with illustrations by Reggie Holladay).

I will be sending instructions for the when and how of our second ZOOM gathering (TBD).As a bonus for those who attended the ZOOM class Monday (or for those who wonder how that looked), here is a 7-minute summary of Monday evening's ZOOM experiment.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

First ZOOM Meeting with 21 Preschool Students

After 14 fun-fillied classes in her "Cozy Little Cabin," Mrs. K tried a Zoom session with 21 preschoolers. It was as much fun as a "barrel of monkeys" as the old saying goes. Believe it or not, they hope to do another session in the future. Mrs. K is always thinking of ideas and the next session has a game that utilizes the "mute" botton. Hmmmm. I'm eager to see how that goes. But the important thing was not how well kids can recite a poem or sing a song on ZOOM; the fun was seeing the unvarnished joy they all expressed in seeing each other after a month of quarantine.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin" D - E - F

In this class, Mrs. K opens with "Seven Days Are In a Week," which parents may not realize is sung at the beginning of every class when they meet in the regular classroom. So while that may seem repetitive in these videos, the patterns and rhythms of "routine" are a big part of learning in preschool. The same is true with the song the class sings at the end of every class. We hope that each family is finding a rhythm in some healthy routines in these passing days even though we look forward to the day when the normal rhythms of life return.

Mrs. K reviews the letters D, E, and F and the five senses with an emphasis on "hearing" and attentiveness. The story is "How Do Dinosaurs Say I'm Mad?" by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague, an important story about HOW NOT TO BEHAVE when you are upset. Temper tantrums are not acceptable, and this book illustrates how such behaviour is disrespectful, disappointing, and destructive. Acting out in anger is and always a bad choice. Elmo makes a special "guest appearance" during the "sorting game."

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Mrs. K's "Cozy Littel Cabin" A-B-C

Having completed the alphabet with the letter "Z" on Monday, Mrs. K will begin a quick review that allows her to do multiple letters at a time as we enter into the last month of classes. She will also begin a discussion of the five senses. As circumstances regarding our "closure" begin to improve on a weekly basis, we look forward to doing some fun things in the weeks ahead. Here is a note from Mrs. K: "I was in our classroom today to get my magn-doodle and some other things for class, and I saw all your names on the tables and up on the white board. I'm trying to be brave for all of you each time we meet in the "cozy cabin," but I must admit I was very sad to be in that room without you. I miss you all so much it hurts. I love you." Mrs. Kapanka

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin" Class 12: "Z"

In this class, Mrs. K the letter "Z" primarily through words like Zebra, Zipper, and Zoo. She also reviews numbers 10,11, and 12 in order to introuce telling time by the hour. The concept of minutes is not typically introduce at the preschool level, but grasping hours lays the foundation for 60 minutes when counting by tens is introduced inintroduces later grades. An interesting thing happened in the middle of the video. Mrs. K make a "Z" out of playd-dough, but Mr. K asked her to do it so it would be correct from the camera's point of view. This gets a bit confusing, but we did get it right, and no one would have know. BUT... while editing, Mr. K accidently deleted the correct "take." So we ended up using the "blooper" and hope you don't mind a laugh on us. After all, education is all about learning from mistakes and being able to laugh while learning. We did.

(Mr. and Mrs. K have never done anything like this together. Hope you all are enjoying the "Cozy Little Cabin," but Mrs. K sure misses you guys.)

Friday, April 17, 2020

Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin" Class 11: "Y"

In this class, Mrs. K introducess the letter "Y" and demonstrates the Yo-Yo that had delivered to her class (original 21 students). Today's story is "Guess How Much I Love You" by Sam McBratney (illustrated by Anita Jeram). The numbers 10, 11, and 12 are introduced as a brief introduction to the "clocks." If you have a numeric face clock in your home, please use that as a teaching tool in upcoming lessons.

Parents, in the "W" and "X" class, Mrs. K mentioned "Walking Stick Stories." Please watch that with your children. There are some important lessons taught to children and adults of all ages. 

Also, be sure to watch today's class to the very end because I included a couple Yo-Yo bloopers. Letting parents in on things that go wrong while taping the classes is something I wish I had started  in March because there are always funny "out-takes" each time we tape a class. Who know what the future holds?

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin" Class 10: "X"

In this class, Mrs. K introduces the letter "X," which we know is less frequently used than most letters, but she does introduce the Xylophone (and plays it surprisingly well, but she does play piano. Did you know that?) She also introduces the symbolic use of "X" at the end of a letter and in the expression: "X marks the spot." That activity includes a brief "tour" of the spots students might visit before coming to school if we were not in a national "lock down." The numbers 8 and 9 are reviewed and 10 is introduced. The money activity requires 10 pennies, a nickle and a dime. The story is "The Hungry Fox and the Foxy Duck" by Kathleen Leverich (illustrated by Paul Galdone).

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin" Class 9, "W"

Today is a Wonderful day of "W"s. It includes Psalm 56:3-4 "When I am afraid, I will trust in you..." This class also has a special guest appearance with Mrs. Wilson (not in person) who talks about "walks" and "whistling" (and even lets Mrs. K show us her hidden tallent in whistling). The story is "The Worrywarts" by Pamela Duncan Edwards (illustrated by Henry Cole). Mrs. K also does two simple water experiments that can be done at home WITH PARENTAL SUPERVISION.

On her way to the kitchen, Mrs. K stops by a collection of walking sticks and mentions that Mr. K will tell some "Walking Stick Stories" in a future presentation. Stay tuned for that as time allows.

Sunday, April 5, 2020

"The Shadow Box": A Game For All to Play

Since Mrs. K's Cozy Little Cabin" is not meeting this week due to Spring Break, Mr. Kapanka wanted to show you something from of “the other corners of the cabin."

The objects in the Shadow Box are Circa 1963-83, and contain small objects from both Mr. and Mrs. Kapanka's childhood and their first five years of marriage. This particular project involves a rectangular piece of 1/4 plywood/mahagony and about 3 or 4 soft pine yardsticks (the kind hardware stores used to give away with the store name on it). This video was made during the national school closure of March-19, 2020, in response to the Covid-19 Pandemic. In the spirit of the "I Spy" books, see if you can find the following items in the shadow box. Viewing on a large screen (Ipad, Chromebook, laptop, or larger), It may help to take a picture of the list on a separate device or print the list on paper and check items as you go: Do You See....
Round one: Watch video once without pausing. See how many items you can find WITHOUT HITTING PAUSE. (If you find half without hitting pause, you're amazing.)

The Shadow Box Game
Round two: Pushing pause is allowed as needed to search in the nooks and crannies and shadows of the shadow box. Here is the list (92 items):
3 toy guns, tube of toothpaste, 1 small toy soldier,tin can, rocking horse, steel ball (marble), small piece of rusty barbed-wire, two dogs sitting side by side, large bolt, 2 bottle caps, 1 carnival prize clicker, rusty wrench, tiny silver wrench, steel whistle, old dump truck (missing wheel), oil lamp (red chimney), monopoly game piece, 2+shells, acorn, bulldog, 2 small bottles (no lids), Roosevelt pin, lock of hair, two tiny pad-locks, light bulb, business card, white feather, Statue of Liberty, die (1 "dice"), 3 rusty nails together, straight pin, Amoco pen, 1984 Detroit Tigers pocket schedule, 2 eagles, Saturday Evening Post, West Highland Terrier (white dog), Old "skeleton key," 1 pill bottle, Charlie Brown watch, U.S. brass button, jack knife (without picture on it that is no longer in its place by the last close-up shot), spent rifle cartridge, button from Levi Strauss jeans, 2 thimbles (one broken), corsage (pink flowers) Oil-o-sol medicine, brass token (Showbiz Pizza), 2 test tubes, 2 empty spools, 1 full spool, small girl with blue flowers, 2 girls riding old bike, silver tie clip (with sword), locket with baby picture, Bayer aspirin tin, round Silver Dollar City, Missouri sticker, air mail pin, drill bit (hidden), 3-4 track runners, 1 "I love you" coin, 1 "V" for Victory pin from WWII, 1 "Indian" chief, 1 Buckwheat badge (from "Little Rascals") , 1 cigar (gum), 1 penny, small gum-ball machine Now think outside the box: 1 Vernors bottle, 1 bow (no arrow), 1 "rug beater", 6 Michigan lighthouses, 2 wooden tennis rackets, 2 rag dolls, 1 school administrator passing time with dear friends.

In the comment section below, tell Mrs. Kapanka how long it took you to find the items. Or ask for hints if you need them. After a few days, she will provide hints for those who ask.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Preface to "Cabin Backstory"; God Uses Broken Things

Shortly after the state-mandated closure of all schools in the state, a follow-up declaration from also restricted us from leaving our homes for non-essential reasons. Because of that, we're all pretty much confined to our houses and yards, where we greet our neighbors from afar. I think it is the isolation that is hardest to endure--especially if you have lots of family nearby, and yet you visit by FaceTime as if they're far away.

I recently told a friend that "I have a face for radio." So why the videos? It because of the isolation and the "cabin fever," that we are or will be experiencing. The thought of a real "cabin" secluded in the woods has always appealed to me, but what we are all experiencing during this Covid-19 shut down is a "whole 'nuther thing." So at the risk of being thought a bit "out there," we began taping Mrs. Kapanka's preschool classes (in very condensed form) down in her "Cozy Little Cabin," which has sparked some interest from many of you. This video is a preface to the Backstory of that Cabin.

Cabin Backstory: Where? When,? Why? and How?

This video is for the CCS parents and older students who may be curious about the connection between the school and the cabin in our basement, but it is also a reminder that God uses broken things for His purposes. That would include broken school-years.

When we do our best to see things from God's perspective, we tend to think more creatively, we tend to see more than one purpose in a plan. The opening of the video list several examples from scripture of how God uses broken things. This cabin comes from "broken things."

I literally took this "cabin" from a trash bin nearly two decades ago, and for 18 years it was simply a "family room" of sorts, but on March 13, 2020, when schools acros the nation were temporarily closed to give "social distancing" a chance to slow or even stop the spread of Covid-19. That was when "The Cozy Little Cabin" became the place where Mrs. Kapanka (and guests?) began spending time with her class.

At the time of this post, the effectiveness of "social distancing" seemed to be having positive results, but just how effective our 15 days of isolation would be remained to be seen. The time involved to spend just few minutes (via video) with those we care about is a small reflection of the bond between teachers, students, and parents. One positive outcome of this isolation is that, ironically, we are seeing the non-school side each other. I've enjoyed that.

The Last Class from Mrs. K's "Cozy Little Cabin"

The theme of the class is change. By looking at the change of a seed to a plant, a tad-pole to a frog, an egg to a chicken, and a caterpille...