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Friendship Week

Friendship week was so, well … FRIENDLY!  It was amazing to see the students interacting and looking out for one another.

We started off the week by reading a story called The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister. In the story, the rainbow fish learns that as beautiful as he may be, none of the other fish want to play with him because he refuses to share. After speaking with the wise octopus, the rainbow fish learns that sharing his beautiful shiny scales with his friends will not only make everyone beautiful but it will also make everyone happy. By the end of the story, the rainbow fish decides that sharing is fun and all of the fish become great friends.

After reading the story, the students created their very own Rainbow Fish to remind them that sharing is caring!

The students did such an amazing job we even turned their creations into a beautiful bulletin board.

Later in the afternoon, the students brainstormed and created a list of ways to be a good friend. The list included:  playing together, sharing, being nice, cheering up a sad friend, and helping a friend do something.

The teachers selected some students to come up and role play each of the different ways to be a friend. The role plays were adorable.  Below is a picture of one of the students cheering up a sad friend with a hug.

On Tuesday, the teachers explained that this year in school the class is on a journey as we learn, grow, and make great friends.  Seeing that the students enjoy trains so much, the teachers equated the class’s journey to that of a train – with each student as an individual train car.  We all need to get onboard and work together to get to the final destination- friendship.

The students worked diligently on water color painting the train cars labeled with their name.

They really turned out to be quite beautiful!

The teachers couldn’t help but create a bulletin board to symbolize the students’ journey on the friendship train – and who better to lead the train than Thomas!

On Wednesday, the students listened to the Todd Parr story, It’s Okay to Be Different.  Naturally, the illustrations show very different people and explain that it’s okay to be different because it is what makes everyone special. The illustrations in this story, and other Todd Parr stories, are really fun! The teachers decided it would be neat to try to create a replica of the cover art from the story. Needless to say, they turned out great!

Wednesday was Back to School Night at Park Prep.  Thank you to all of the parents who were able to attend.  We hope you found Back to School Night to be informative and exciting!  If you were unable to attend, please ask either Miss Justine or Miss Jocelyn to give you the packet that was distributed – including the 2009-2010 Park Prep Family Directory.

On Thursday, the teachers, building on the “It’s Okay to be Different” theme, put together a computer presentation all about two friends who are about as different as they come! After morning meeting, the students viewed a short video clip about a 130 year old tortoise named Mzee and a baby hippopotamus named Owen. As you will see in the video clip, Owen, the hippo, was stranded off the coast of Kenya after the 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake, or the tsunami, hit. Owen was saved by some volunteers who then brought him to a nature park. He quickly became friendly with an old tortoise named Mzee – which means wise old man. Be sure to click on the link below to learn more about the amazing friendship between this hippo and tortoise.

To access the video directly, click HERE!.

If you are looking for more information on Owen and Mzee, be sure to visit the website,, dedicated to the amazing friendship between Owen and Mzee.

After seeing the two animals interacting, the students noted that animals, just like people, like to play with their friends, hug their friends, and just spend time with their friends!

The students created colorful hippo puppets to help remind them that being a friend is fun!

Seeing that the students enjoyed viewing the two animals interacting, the teachers set out to find some other fun and unexpected animal friends! We hope you enjoy the following adorable pictures as much as the students did! It’s hard to decide what was funnier, the pictures themselves or the fact that a group full of 2.5 – 5 years olds were ohhhing and ahhhing, saying “Oh! They’re so cute!” Enjoy!

Also on Thursday, PPA was paid a special visit from some of our favorite community members – the Jersey City firefighters! Here are some of the students saying hello and one lucky student who got an opportunity to show off his fire truck lunch bag!

On Friday, the students heard the story, King For A Day by Leon Goss III.  In the story, a little boy decides to play a game where he will be king. Unfortunately for his friends, the boy is not a kind king and he does not treat his friends well. He is quite a bossy king. After a day of being bossed around, the boy’s friends decide to play a different game – without him. Of course, this hurts the king’s feelings and by the end of the story, he learns that it is important to be nice to everyone – especially your friends!

At Park Prep, we think everyone is special so we decided to have a classroom full of kings and queens! Here are some photos of the crowns that the students made and PROUDLY wore around the classroom on Friday!

In the afternoon, Dr. Greenwald brought in a very special, top secret surprise to wrap up Friendship Week perfectly.  After a couple of super silly guesses as to what could be inside the bag, the students could hardly contain their excitement!

Miss Jocelyn dropped the bag that was covering the surprise and the students began to cheer!  The surprise was new friends – class pet fish!

We then voted on which names the students liked best.  We’d like to take this opportunity to officially introduce you to:  RedHead, Blackpack, SpotFish, Rainbow Fish, and Jose.

Be sure to check out our new fish friends next time you stop by.

What an amazing way to wrap up an incredible week!

See you next week!