Tales from Lower School
Calhoun students celebrated the annual 100th Day Museum to commemorate completing 100 days of school. Each cluster worked together to create projects that reflected their understanding of what the number 100 looks like.
This year’s 100th Day Museum was full of interdisciplinary projects that made connections between math and other fields: from a scientific model of a 100-tentacled jellyfish, to an interpretation of a Kandinsky painting. Community service was also a common theme, with some clusters showing collections of donated books or canned goods for a local food pantry.
All of the projects were put on display in the 74th Street theater, and the entire Little Calhoun community dropped by to enjoy the creations. Bravo to this year’s exhibitors!
Second graders made a scientific model of the 100-tentacled immortal jellyfish. Each of the 100 tentacles had an equation that equaled the number 100. The project reinforced concepts of biology, while helping students practice math skills such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, cubed numbers and factorials.
Using the painting Squares with Concentric Circles as inspiration, second graders created 100 paper squares layered with colored circles to mimic the color study by Wassily Kandinski in 1913.
100 food items that were collected for the local food pantry West Side Campaign Against Hunger.
A collection of 100 books donated to Project Cicero, a non-profit organization that creates and supplements classroom libraries in under-resourced New York City public schools.
First graders created artistic renditions of favorite Pocket People foods. Each child made 10 of one type of food, which they will later add to their Pocket Person’s home.
One group of second graders made a representation of 100 words that they can read, write and spell.
3’s students counted from one to 10 in 10 different languages. Each language was chosen because of its connection to the languages of the families and teachers in the cluster. Many of these preschoolers are bilingual and have been teaching their classmates how to count in different languages.
First graders drew, cut and painted 100 eagle feathers. After counting by groups of 10’s to make sure they had exactly 100 feathers, they then sorted the feathers by colors and divided them into two groups of 50.
First graders posed with their project of 100 paper flowers.
4’s students created a centipede with 100 legs.
by Priscilla Marrero, Lower School Spanish teacher
In an effort to respond to hurricane victims, the Lower School community rallied together in an amazing showing of support for the children of Puerto Rico. Over the course of a week, we collected donations of books, pens, crayons, new pajamas and stuffed animals for the Bel Esprit Cultural Institute’s Rise and Read project, which unites with teachers on the ground to restore a sense of normalcy for children while the adults focus on rebuilding.
It was a wonderful, magical week full of so much community support at Little Calhoun: from coordinating ideas and talking with the children about the hurricanes in Puerto Rico to creating bookmarks and sorting the boxes full of donations. It was a real communal effort, and it was incredible to witness and be a part of it all!
Our bookmarks made by 3's –2nd graders, teachers and staff
We had a special donation from our local Stationary and Toy World on 72nd Street. Donna, the owner, gave us pens, crayons, and boxes of composition books – she even sent over her staff to deliver in person!
Some of our students were so eager to participate that they joined me in the theater to help sort and receive collections. Thank you Daisy and Javier!
Emerson was so eager to support that he told his mom that he wanted to make 100 more bookmarks for the children in Puerto Rico! He really enjoyed learning about the process of creating for others.
Thanks to Avy (Calhoun parent) and Elyna (Calhoun kindergarten student), the donations are headed to Brooklyn to meet Kafayat Alli-Balogun, founder of the Bel Esprit Cultural Institute, and go to Puerto Rico!
Thank you to everyone for their kindness and generosity in contributing to this project! What an awesome week!
Counting, Collaborating and Creating:
The 4's Recipe for the 100 Day Museum Project
By Danita Harrison and Elissa Kompanek, 4's Head Teachers
Every year the students in Little Calhoun put together a museum marking the 100th day of school by contributing a myriad of projects, items and activities that reflect the number 100. This year, on March 2, children and teachers from every cluster were invited to visit this year’s exhibit. Parents were invited to stop by during drop-off, as well.
Here’s a peek at the process for our 4's clusters:
Leading up to the 100 Day Museum
There was so much buzz around the room about the upcoming 100th day of school! One 4’s cluster was marking off the days on a chart in the meeting area, and periodically walked up to the kindergarten classroom to double-check that we were “on schedule.” When we realized we were at ninety days, we began discussing how we could help put together some projects to contribute to the 100th Day Museum.
We began to brainstorm ideas with the children to elicit ideas for the exhibit. Many good ideas floated around, like collaging 100 pieces of recycled cardboard, building with 100 Magna-Tiles, painting a box and gluing or placing 100 things inside, or donating 100 books.
The children were very excited as they worked alongside each other, painting a box to help fulfill the idea of one of their beloved friends. The project also inspired them to start counting whatever they could find in the classroom.
Although we had under fifty seats in the room (we counted the couch and stools as seats), the children enjoyed the group activity.
In meetings and around the room we continued to explore counting to 100—counting our cubbies, snap cubes and goldfish crackers! (That last one didn’t work out well, since the children would eat them as fast as they counted them and quickly forget what number they were at!)
One of the children thought there might be 100 chairs in the room; this led to a room-wide count-a-thon. We used numbered Post-Its on every seat (chairs, stools and the couch), lined them up in numerical order and counted. (There weren't 100 chairs, but the children had fun doing it!)
We then decorated all 100-numbered Post-Its and put them in groups of 3 to 5 each. These were attached to a long piece of recycled cardboard, with 20 in each of five rows. This was significant; through these cooperative explorations, the children were building a sense of number in a multi-sensory manner while they are counting, using one-to-one correspondence. Having the Post-Its in five rows also enabled them to notice patterns.This project so fascinated them that the Post-It construct is now a fixture in the room; the children continue to go over to it individually or in small groups.
In cluster meeting, we continued to explore the idea of counting in groups of tens as a way to count big groups of numbers faster. One child got so excited, he attempted to write numbers 1 through 50 by using the chart on the wall as a guide. For an art project, we put our hands to good use-- painting and tracing them for a mural of 100 hands to donate to the museum.
On the day of the museum, the children loved seeing their collaborative contributions to the museum as well as those of the other clusters, and many were seen practicing their counting skills as they circled around the room.
Choose groups to clone to: