Newsletter 12/5/19

Reminders:

VOYAGE continues: We started our 4th anchor this week-KINDNESS! We have been learning that kindness means caring about the well being of those around us. Our first action point is kindess is understanding the feelings of others.  Students continue to give heartfelt peer compliments using our four learned anchors so far this year-Cooperation, Perseverance, Courage and now Kindness.  Our school now has a “voyager of the month” This is a student who consistently displays and shows the character anchor for the month! Congratulations to Cooper who was our cooperation anchor voyager of the month for our class! Congratulations also to Cassidy who was our Perserverance anchor voyager of the month! These friends will receive a special award certificate from the front office very soon! WAY TO GO!!!  It was hard to pick just one friend to represent these anchors as our WHOLE class continues to do such an amazing job with their character anchors every day! Way to go everyone! 

Winter Party: Just a reminder we will have our special class winter celebration on Monday, December 16th in our classroom from 10:15-11:00. Just like Scarecrow day all parents are invited to attend! Please also remember this is a very special time for your first graders and crafts, snacks and activities are planned based on the number of friends we have in the classroom so no younger siblings please. Thank you for your understanding with this! Thank you to our amazing room moms who are already buys planning another fun morning and to everyone who has volunteered to help! The students and I appreciate it so very much!

Class Giving Bag: Thank you so very much to everyone who has donated and continues to send in items for our class giving bag. This bag will go to help families at our sister school over the long winter break! Thank you so much for your generosity!!!!

December Book Order: Book orders are coming home TONIGHT. There is a quick turnaround for these this month-due by MONDAY-so I can ensure they are delivered before the winter break. There is only one flyer attached to the letter this month but there are TONS more books available online and available.  If you would like to order books for your child as a gift please just let me know once you order and I will hold them aside and let you know when they arrive so we can arrange a secret pick up:)

LAST week of Fact Clubs: This week is the last week of fact clubs. If your child has been attending a fact club please make sure you send a note with them next week so I know how they will get home once clubs are over on their club day(s). Thank you so much! 

What We Are Learning:
MATH: This week in math we have had fun with data and graphing! We have been working to organize and represent data with up to three categories. Then we worked to ask and answer questions about the number of data points. We worked really hard to carefully read the questions being asked, look for our helper key words, find our data totals, pull and use our OG math bars to match our data and then work to find the correct answer! Students did great with this! Some had trouble with how many more and the key word or. If you see your child had trouble additional review at home would be great! We will asses this skill Friday! 
AT HOME: Ask your child what a graph is, how we can organize our data and what a graph helps us to do! 

Reader’s Workshop: This week we started to learn how to read aloud like an expert! We had so much fun working to mark our interesting parts and sharing these with our reading partners and in our reading groups and also learning and practicing to show feeling in each part we read! Please make sure you are helping your child read for at least 15 minutes each night. They should all have their bag of books nightly, and any other books at home at great as well. This at home reading makes a HUGE difference at this time of the year with students continued growth. It is so important students are reading and rereading their texts while also working to answer comprehension questions about what they read. Thank you so much for your support with this at home! 

We also continue to work on identifying the main idea and supporting details of text we read. We think of the main idea as the big umbrella idea.

We finished our non fiction convention notebooks this week! Students are so excited to bring these home to share with you all! Students should now be able to tell you what each of these special conventions are, where you find them and how they help us as nonfiction readers!
AT HOME: Have your child look through their personal libraries focusing on nonfiction texts and see if they can find you an example of each of the conventions we have learned so far.  *** At least 15 minutes of nightly reading! This can include trick word practice too-reading then writing and spelling! 

Phonics: We finished beginning blends this week. We now have learned bl, cl, pl, fl, sl, gl, cr, tr, fr, br, and dr.  We also learned st at the beginning of words as well as -st at the end of words.   Examples: brick, drum, star
Trick Words: before, stop, off, who, again*** Quarter 2 end of the nine weeks expectation is that students can read at least 100 of our 1st grade trick words***Please remember once your child can read the trick words please continue to work on spelling them***

Writer’s Workshop: WOW! Students are really loving our writing unit this nine weeks and I am loving watching each of them grow as writers so very much! This week we picked our favorite informative/explanatory  How to or All About book that students wrote this nine weeks. They then worked to reread their stories and check their writings using a information writing checklist. After they checked their work they worked with a partner again using the checklist to make sure their writing had all the important parts we learned about. I am not meeting with students one on one to conference, edit and revise writings so we can start publishing! We hope to all have a published book by the end of next week! 
We continue to practice REALLY using COPS (Capitalization, Order, Punctuation, Spelling) to help us check our sentences that we write. Students should now consistently AND independently be writing complete sentences with correct ending punctuation at the end in all sentences that they write. We now are really focused on correct capitalization at the beginning of our complete sentences, in names of people AND in dates. Continued reminders to these important skills at home would be helpful too! We are also checking to make sure we are using singular and plural nouns correctly! 
AT HOME: Give your child a sentence that needs to be fixed up(missing capital letters and ending punctuation marks) and have them rewrite it correctly to see if they can find and correct all the mistakes. Ask them about their writing they picked to publish. Ask if it is a How To book or an All About book and what they worked on with the checklist on their own and with their partner. 

Science and Social Studies: We finished our almanac’s all about Benjamin Franklin this week! Students did an amazing job! These will be coming home soon! I know students are anxious to bring these home to share with you all of their hard work! We started learning all about Thomas Jefferson this week! We will continue to learn all about him over the next two weeks! We will also learn more about sound next week! 
OPTIONAL PROJECTS TOPICS FOR DECEMBER:
SCIENCE: Sound
SOCIAL STUDIES: Thomas Jefferson 

Thank you so much for your continued support! I could not do what I do without you!!

Newsletter 11/14/19

Reminders:

Our VOYAGE continues: We started continued our 3rd anchor this week-COURAGE! We have learned that we can show courage by doing the right thing even when it is hard, facing things even when they are hard and this week our action point focus has been doing the right thing, when others are not. Our morning compliment time continues to go great! Students continue to give heartfelt peer compliments using our three learned anchors so far this year-Cooperation, Perseverance and Courage. 

Winter Party: Just a reminder we will have our special class winter celebration on Monday, December 16th in our classroom from 10:15-11:00. Just like Scarecrow day all parents are invited to attend! Please also remember this is a very special time for your first graders and crafts, snacks and activities are planned based on the number of friends we have in the classroom so no younger siblings please. Thank you for your understanding with this! Thank you to our amazing room moms who are already buys planning another fun morning and to everyone who has volunteered to help! The students and I appreciate it so very much!

Holiday Doors and Writings: Please check students folders tonight for a very special holiday homework.  These special doors and the writing to go with them will be due when we get back from Thanksgiving break by December 3rd. If your child finishes before then please feel free to send them in when they are done.  We look forward to hearing about everyone’s special traditions. 

What We Are Learning:
MATH: We have been working this week to determine if our addition and subtraction facts are true or false with the = sign in all places.(ex: 5-3=4, 6=2+4, 12=12) We start by circling the equal sign and reading our number sentence so we know if we are adding or subtracting.  We then worked with our new elbow partners to build each side of the equal sign and then compared our answers together. If our sides of the equal sign were the same we determined the fact was true and balanced. If our sides of the equal sign were different we now know that is a false, unbalanced number sentence.  Our OG math bars have been a huge help once again this week as we worked to build and compare both sides of the equal sign.  
AT HOME: Give your child a true and false addition fact and have them show you, tell you and walk you through the steps they have been doing each day to solve their equations. Also ask them about the scale and how we show balanced and unbalanced equations with a scale. Do the same with a true and false subtraction fact.

Reader’s Workshop: We continued this week working to tackle and solve super hard words especially in our nonfiction texts. We learned how to do a s-l-o-w check and to say the word the best that we can and then make sure to think about what it means.  We also learned  we can continue to get super smart on nonfiction topics by finding and thinking about key words in the texts we read. 
We also continue to work on identifying the main idea and supporting details of text we read. We think of the main idea as the big umbrella idea. We started our non fiction convention notebooks this week which are helping us to learn all about the special conventions and text features in the non fiction texts we read. We have learned about, practiced locating and practiced using: table of contents, bold print, headings, and glossaries. Students should now be able to tell you what each of these conventions are, where you find them and how they help us as nonfiction readers.
AT HOME: Have your child look through their personal libraries focusing on nonfiction texts and see if they can find you an example of each of the conventions we have learned so far.

Phonics: We continued with beginning blends this week. So far we have learned bl, cl, pl, fl, sl, gl, cr and tr.  We will continue with beginning blends next week as well.   Examples: flag, crab, plug, block
Trick Words: too, two, could, should, would  ***Please remember once your child can read the trick words please continue to work on spelling them***

Writer’s Workshop: WOW! Students are really loving our writing unit this nine weeks and I am loving watching each of them grow as writers so very much! We continue to work on our non fiction writing unit focusing on writing informative/explanatory texts. Each day students are writing on topics they are experts on so they can teach their reader all about it. We have a writing station in our room full of lots of paper choices for planning and writing these fun books. Students are working on How To books as well as All About books!   We also learned that writing in twin sentences, using size, shape, and color words and also giving examples helps us to better teach our readers. We are working to include pictures with arrows, captions and zoom ins that also teach our readers even more. With our All About books we learned the importance of our chapter titles and learned its best to make them interesting, keep them short, tell what the page is about and chop up our big topics.  We continue to revisit narrative writings each Monday morning with our Weekend News stories in our writer’s notebooks as well!
We continue to practice REALLY using COPS (Capitalization, Order, Punctuation, Spelling) to help us check our sentences that we write. Students should now consistently AND independently be writing complete sentences with correct ending punctuation at the end in all sentences that they write. We now are really focused on correct capitalization at the beginning of our complete sentences, in names of people AND in dates. Continued reminders to these important skills at home would be helpful too! 
AT HOME: Brainstorm together with your child topics they are experts on and that they know a lot about that they could turn into a teaching book! Give them a sentence that needs to be fixed up(missing capital letters and ending punctuation marks) and have them rewrite it correctly to see if they can find and correct all the mistakes.

Science and Social Studies: Students are loving learning all about Benjamin Franklin! We have learned about Benjamin Franklin’s childhood, Ben as a writer, Ben as an inventor, and Ben as a strong leader! 

OPTIONAL PROJECTS TOPICS FOR NOVEMBER:
SCIENCE: Light and Shadows
SOCIAL STUDIES: Benjamin Franklin

Thank you so much for your continued support! I could not do what I do without you!!

 

Newsletter 11/7/19

Reminders:

Foundation’s Patron Drive: THANK YOU so much to all the families who donated/pledged to support our amazing Foundation and their annual Patron Drive! The students and I appreciate your continued support, being ALL IN, and helping to ensure a strong Foundation can continue for the students, staff and families at Mt. Bethel! The best gift you can give is the GIFT OF EDUCATION by being ALL IN!!! We can’t wait to hear the final results and see if we met our 100% class participation goal!!! Thank you!

Book Orders: November book orders came home on Monday! If you would like to order your child some new books for their at home libraries orders are due by Monday the 11th. Students are all really growing as readers. This is a great way to help them continue to get excited about their reading while also expanding their at home libraries with some great new books both fiction and nonfiction! 

Our VOYAGE continues: We started our 3rd anchor this week-COURAGE! We have learned that we can show courage by doing the right thing even when it is hard!

Veteran’s Day: We are looking forward to celebrating Veteran’s Day on Monday! This week the students wrote amazing, heartfelt thank you notes to our veterans! They also are working to make a flag to hold and wave during the parade and also are making a patriotic hat to wear on Monday! All students and staff were encouraged to wear red, white and blue on Monday! It is going to be a great day! Make sure to check out Seesaw to see some of the fun celebration on Monday!

What We Are Learning:
MATH: Last week we worked to review our addition strategies learned from quarter one with facts within 20 including: build with bars, count on, and using a numberline. We also learned two new strategies doubles and near doubles.  This week we have been reviewing subtraction strategies with numbers within 20 including: count back 1, 2, or 3, use a numberline to count back, build with bars, related facts, and fact families. Students are doing a great job reading their number sentences, deciding the best strategy to use to solve it, working carefully to apply the strategy so they solve accurately, and then double checking with a second strategy. We also continue to label the two parts and the whole in each of our number sentences with both addition and subtraction facts. This skill will help the students tremendously as we continue to move through our standards especially with missing addend problems 3rd nine weeks. 
AT HOME: Give your child a an addition or subtraction fact within 20 and ask them to solve it for you while also telling you how they are solving it, including which strategy they used and why! (ex: 9+3, 8+8, 7+5, 5+6,  13-2, 15-8, 12-3) Moby Max-fact fluency is another great at home resource and practice! Students usernames and passwords were sent home at the start of the year and were given out again at conferences. This would be a great activity to try to get your child on at least once a week to help them increase their fluency and learn their facts in a snap.  

Reader’s Workshop: We continue to focus on nonfiction and how we can get super smart about non fiction topics! We worked this week to read our non fiction texts with a smooth and lively voice to help us get super smart on our non fiction topics. We learned when we read this way we also help to increase our comprehension of what we are reading especially with our non fiction texts. We also added another strategy to help us solve hard words- crash our parts together! 
We started to work this week on identifying the main idea and supporting details of text we read and that I read to the students. We think of the main idea as the big umbrella idea. This week we also started to work on our non fiction convention notebooks. We will work on these over the next couple of weeks. They will help us to learn all about the special conventions and text features that are in the non fiction texts we read. We learned about table of contents this week. 
AT HOME: Have your child find you a couple non fiction books in their personal libraries. Then have them tell you what makes its non fiction. Have them find the table of contents and tell you what it is, where you find it and how it helps you. Have them practice reading their reading groups books to you and when they are reading remind them we are really working on using our smooth and lively voices and matching our feelings and tones to the characters. 

Phonics: Blends: A blend is when 2 or 3 consonants come together and you can hear both sounds. So far we have learned bl, pl, cl, fl, gl, and sl. Next week we will focus on r blends. 
Trick Words: (last week) blue, over, put, good, from, (this week) here, any, want, eat, many

Writer’s Workshop: We have been working over the last two weeks with our non fiction writing unit focusing on writing informative/explanatory texts. We are learning how we can teach our reader. Students worked to think of topics that they know a lot about and brainstormed lists in their writer’s notebooks. We then worked with a writing partner to plan our writings using our temporal words on our fingers. Our next step we have been practicing is to sketch our pictures across a couple of pages. Last, we write the informative texts focusing on teaching someone how to do something or all about something. Students can chose each day they are ready to start a new story if they want to write a How To book or an All About book.  We have learned we can teach our readers by: thinking about questions they might have including Who? Where? How? When? Why?,  writing in twin sentences, and including pictures with arrows, captions and zoom ins! We will continue to expand this nonfiction writing even further over the next couple of weeks. We continue to revisit narrative writings each Monday morning with our Weekend News stories in our writer’s notebooks as well!
We continue to REALLY practice using COPS (Capitalization, Order, Punctuation, Spacing) to help us check our sentences that we write. Students should now consistently AND independently be writing complete sentences with correct ending punctuation at the end. We now also really focusing on correct capitalization at the beginning of our complete sentences AND in names of people.
AT HOME: Brainstorm together with your child to think of even more topics they know a lot about that they could turn into a informative/explanatory writings! Give them a sentence that needs to be fixed up(missing capital letters and ending punctuation marks) and have them rewrite it correctly to see if they can find and correct all the mistakes.

Science and Social Studies: Last week we learned all about light and shadows!  We learned about natural and artificial sources of light. We then learned how shadows are made and students had so much fun creating their own shadow puppets, using a light source and creating their own shadows all over the classroom!  We started to learn all about our first American Hero for the year-Benjamin Franklin! We are working on a project that integrates social studies, reading main idea, and writing each day focused on Benjamin Franklin! We have learned about Benjamin’s childhood and Benjamin as a writer. 

OPTIONAL PROJECTS TOPICS FOR NOVEMBER:
SCIENCE: Light and Shadows
SOCIAL STUDIES: Benjamin Franklin

Thank you so much for your continued support! I could not do what I do without you!!

We LOVE the TURF!!!

We LOVE the TURF!!!! Even on rainy, gloomy days we are still able to get outside, get some fresh air, and take a brain break!  We are also able to enjoy recess outside even on days when it has rained in the morning because the turf dries so quickly! Before we had the turf on days like today we would have been stuck inside because the field would have been unsafe with all the mud! We are SO lucky our Foundation purchased the amazing turf for us a couple years ago and look forward to being able to enjoy it for many years to come! Thank you to everyone who is already ALL IN and has donated or pledged to Foundation’s Patron Drive! If you haven’t already and would still like too, there are only 2 days left!!!!

Donate HERE!!!

 

Newsletter 10/24/19

We have had a wonderful week together as we start our 2nd nine weeks and get back into our normal schedule after last weeks early release days. We began many new things this week in all academic areas that the students have been very excited about! 

Thank you again so very much for taking the time to come in last week and meet with me. I loved being able to share with each of you your child’s growth and progress so far this year as well as goals we will continue to work on in the coming weeks and months!

Reminders:
Scarecrow Day: We are all getting SO excited for our upcoming Scarecrow day on THURSDAY-October 31st from 9:30-10:30! Our awesome room moms and volunteers have been working SO hard to organize, plan and get everything ready for a very fun morning for the students. Just a reminder all students are encouraged(but it is not mandatory) to dress up as a scarecrow for the day! NO other costumes will be allowed on this day if your child chooses not to dress up as a Scarecrow. I can’t wait to see all the cute overalls, plaid, patches, straw, hats, bandannas, etc. Its a very fun and memorable morning for all first graders! All parents are invited to attend and to help out with the planned stations but no younger siblings please as our room fills up very quickly with all the students and parents only. Please let me know if you have any questions. 

Foundation’s Patron Drive: There are only 5 SCHOOL DAYS left to get your donations or pledges in! The patron drive ends on Thursday, October 31st! Many families asked at conferences if we needed anything for our classroom, which I appreciate so very much! We are all set for right now but I would love for all families to support our Foundation and their patron drive and help to ensure that the trainings, activities, double STEM teachers, teacher grants, and professional learning and resources that they provide for the teachers and students at Mt. Bethel can continue! Thank you so much to all the families who have already pledged or donated and for your continued support of our amazing Foundation through their annual Patron drive! We are at 66% class participation right now!  Help our class go ALL IN and reach 100% class participation and  Donate HERE!!!

Our VOYAGE continues!: We are in week 3 with our second anchor PERSERVERANCE-never giving up, even when the task is hard.  We have focused on the following three action points during these last couple of weeks: 1. Perserverance means you are committed to your goals, 2. Not giving up when things get hard, and 3. Sometimes you need to change how you do things.  Thank you FOUNDATION for this amazing program and helping our class grow positively each day with our social interactions and skills! 

What We Are Learning:
Math Workshop:  Over the last two weeks we looped back around to counting to 120 and place value with our numbers from 20-99. Last week we looped back to our numbers up to 120 in which students need to be able to consistently AND independently count up to 120 starting at any number less than 120. Within this range students need to be able to READ and WRITE the correct numerals as they count on. Those students who showed mastery with this standard worked hard extending their knowledge and worked to skip count both forward and backwards by 1’s, 10’s and 5’s starting on different numbers! Students did so well with these and were eager each day to see their new challenge!  This week we focused on place value!  We are working to build, draw-with tens(big kids) and ones(little kids), read, and write-in expanded form- our numbers up to 99! Students did a great job building, drawing, reading and writing all of these numbers up to 99!  Our OG math number bars were a HUGE and VERY helpful addition to both of these units and provided lots of hands on practice which is really helping all students to understand and master these standards. THANK YOU FOUNDATION!!!
AT HOME: Give your child a number up to 99 and have them write it for you identifying how many tens-big kids they have and ones-little kids they have. Then have them draw it for you. Next, have them count their drawing for you, and finishing by having them write the number in expanded form. Give your child any number between 1-120 and have them count for you and write for you the 3 numbers that come before yoru given number and teh 3 numbers that come after your given number. If they want a challenge give them a random number and ask them to skip count forward by 1’s, 10’s or 5’s first then have them also do it going backwards!! We also learned a super fun new math game this week called place value war that I know they would love to show and tell you all about! All you need is a deck of regular playing cards to play! 

Reader’s Workshop: We are focusing on nonfiction now! This week we started working on a new anchor chart during our mini lesson time that is focusing on how we can get super smart about non fiction topics! We worked to take a sneak peek to start our learning, stop and study each page, guess what might come next, and chatted about pages and our books with our reading partners to get super smart on our non fiction topics. Next week we will start to work on identifying the main idea and supporting details of text we read.
AT HOME: Have your child find you a couple non fiction books in their personal libraries. Then have them tell you what makes its non fiction. Ask them to show you how they sneak peek at their new books and also what is means to stop and study each page.

Phonics: FLSZ (floss) Rule: When f, l, s or z is heard after a short vowel at the end of a one syllable word it is spelled with a double ff, ll, ss or zz. Examples: chill, buzz, less, cuff
Trick Words: (last week) one, very, ask, came, your, (this week) help, than, last, next, going

Writer’s Workshop: This week we started our new non fiction writing unit focusing on writing informative/explanatory texts. We are learning how we can teach our reader. Students worked to think of topics that they know a lot about and brainstormed lists in their writer’s notebooks so they have a great resource of ideas to choose from each day as we write. We then worked with a writing partner to plan our writings using our temporal words on our fingers. Our next step we have been practicing is to sketch our pictures across a couple of pages. Last, we write the informative texts focusing on teaching someone how to do something or all about something. We will continue to expand this nonfiction writing even further over the next couple of weeks. We will continue to revisit narrative writings each Monday morning with our Weekend News stories in our writer’s notebooks as well!
We are REALLY focused and working on using COPS (Capitalization, Order, Punctuation, Spacing) to help us check our sentences that we write using our very special purple editing pens. Our goal very soon is that students are able to consistently AND independently write complete sentences with correct ending punctuation at the end. We also now are focusing on correct capitalization at the beginning of our complete sentences AND in names of people.
AT HOME: Brainstorm together with your child to think of even more topics they know a lot about that they could turn into a informative/explanatory writing!  Give them a sentence that needs to be fixed up(missing capital letters and ending punctuation marks) and have them rewrite it correctly to see if they can find and correct all the mistakes. On Sunday evenings as you get ready for the week talk with your child about your weekend together. Ask them what smaller “seed” idea they could focus on to write and share all about in their weekend news. 

Science and Social Studies: We started learning all about light sources this week and deciding if they were natural or artificial. We also started to learn about how shadows are formed and will work to create our own shadows tomorrow! We will finish this next week! We also started to learn all about our first American Hero for the year-Benjamin Franklin!

OPTIONAL PROJECTS for OCTOBER:
Science: Magnets
Social Studies: Where We Live

Thank you for your continued support! I could not do what I do without your support! Thank you!!!

Readers Theater!!!

Did your child LOVE practicing and performing their leveled Reader’s Theater scripts last week? Did you notice a huge improvement in their reading fluency and expression as the week went on like I did when I listened to them practice at school? I was SO impressed when they performed their scripts on Friday with their increased fluency and expression! WOW! This was such a great activity for us to do last week during our early release days focusing on a super important, imperative part of our reading!

Did you know that all of the amazing leveled Readers Theater scripts your child brought home were purchased over 8 years ago through a Foundation Teacher grant I wrote!!!

It is amazing the things we as teachers are able to get and use for many many years through teacher grants funded by our Foundation! I was able to do this because of continued support of our Foundation and their annual patron drive! Just a reminder there is still time to donate or pledge your $125 per child to help ensure a strong foundation can continue and that amazing opportunities like teacher grants can still be granted!!! Thank you SO much to those families who have already donated or pledged! We only have 10 days left in the Patron Drive!!! October 31st is the last day! We are up to 12 families who have donated or pledged with 66% of our class being ALL IN!!!!!

THANK YOU so much!!!  

Donate HERE to help our class go ALL IN!!!!

 

 

Thank you for being ALL IN!!!

Have you heard your child talk about showing cooperation or persistence?  Or our morning compliment time each day? If you have not, please ask them!!!

It is such a special time in our class and a wonderful way we start each day together! Our focus during this time is on compliments to our classmates using our new Voyage anchors from our amazing new character educational and social learning program we were trained in this year-The Voyage! I have seen a huge improvement in our class this year with students showing these character traits daily in all of their interactions with each other and we are only two anchors in! The compliments that are shared each morning would make each of you so very proud! I know I am SO proud of each of one of them! Please ask them if they gave and/or received a compliment today! 

Our training and the new program was made possible this year thanks to our amazing Foundation and parents support of the patron drive last year! The Voyage program is a two year program that then repeats as students go through the grades and we would LOVE to be able to continue it next year with funds from this years patron drive and everyone being ALL IN and for many years to come!!! Without parents continued support funds might not be available. Just think if students could continue this amazing program for the remainder of their time at Mt. Bethel the character traits that they will continue to develop and carry with them for the rest of their lives!

Please help us continue our Voyage and be ALL IN by supporting our Foundation today with your donation or pledge! Thank you so very much to all the families who have already donated or pledged and are ALL IN! The students and I can’t thank you enough! 

Help us be ALL IN and donate HERE!!!

Are You ALL IN?

Are you ALL IN? Just a reminder that Foundation’s Patron Drive is currently going on! I just made our family donation and hope you too will support our amazing Foundation and pledge or donate today! Below is a video with some highlights of some of the amazing programs, resources, and staff members who are all funded by our amazing Foundation! Imagine all the additional resources students would have access to if everyone was ALL IN? 

Donate today HERE

Foundation Video

 

Newsletter 10/3/19

What a BUSY week back we have had as we quickly approach the end of our first nine weeks together! Students have been working so hard this week!

Reminders:
Scarecrow Day: We are SO excited for our upcoming Scarecrow day on October 31st! Our awesome room moms have a sign up if you would like to help during this very special morning there are still volunteer opportunities available on our class Shutterfly site! Please check it out when you can! It will take place in our classroom from 9:30-10:30. Please also start thinking about your child’s outfit for the day! All students are encouraged(but it is not mandatory) to dress up as a scarecrow for the day! Start thinking overalls, plaid, patches, straw, hats, bandannas, etc. Its a very fun and memorable morning for all first graders! Please let me know if you have any questions.

Foundation’s Patron Drive: Foundation’s Patron Drive began on Tuesday! Thank you so much to those families who have already donated to help ensure a strong Foundation continues for their child and are ALL IN! Did you know our amazing STEM lab teachers are funded through our Foundation!!! The students absolutely LOVE when we have STEM as our special! Each time I pick them up they can’t wait to share with me the amazing things they are learning and doing during their time in there! With two teachers now they are able to go to STEM twice as often! Thank you for your continued support of our amazing Foundation through their annual Patron drive and helping our class reach our 100% ALL IN goal!

October Book Order: October book orders are coming home tonight! Orders will be due by next Tuesday! Last month thanks to all of the parent orders we were able to add over 35 new books at all levels to our classroom library! WOW! Thank you!!

Early Release: Next THURSDAY is an early release day all students will be dismissed 2 hours early. Please make sure to send all dismissal changes in writing that day!

Conferences: Thank you SO much for returning conference time confirmation papers back to me so quickly! I really appreciate it! Please remember each day of conference week is an early release day and any changes in dismissal will need to be sent in with your child in writing. This is a very busy week with a lot of schedule changes so reminding your child each morning of their dismissal for that day would also be greatly appreciated! This is a special time for me to share with you your child’s growth so far, their first report card and goals for students as we move forward with the 2nd nine weeks and the remainder of the year. The time goes by VERY quickly so between now and then please take a moment and write down any questions, concerns, etc that you want to make sure we cover so we can address those for sure during our time together. I look forward to seeing you all very soon and sharing with you all of your child’s hard work so far this year!

Our VOYAGE continues!: We are in our last week with our first anchor COOPERATION-working well with others. We are really working on the following action points:  1. listening to others 2. working as a team  3. working towards a goal 4. sometimes we have to compromise 

What We Are Learning:
Math Workshop: This week we worked to use the relationship between addition and subtraction to help us solve related facts through 10! We started by building our addition facts and identifying the two parts and the whole. We then set our part part whole chart up.  Next, student chose a part, flipped and compared it and found their related subtraction fact! It has been amazing to see how quickly students picked this strategy up and were able to show, draw, write and tell me what they did with true number sense and understanding! They are doing such a great job growing their math brains each day! 
*** If you child is still reversing any of their numbers as they write them at home please have them correct them and then practice writing them correctly. The sooner we correct this the better. I am seeing improvements every day!
AT HOME: Give your child two small numbers(parts) and ask them to write, show and tell you how they would find the whole. Then have them continue to write, draw, show and tell you how they would find a related fact for the addition fact.

Reader’s Workshop: Reading groups continue to go great! YEAH!!! I love this very special time each day as the students really develop and grow as readers. Thank you so much for helping your child return their bag of books every day! Each of them is working so hard, applying the skills and strategies we are learning and really trying their best! Please remember our biggest goal as we grow as readers is that our comprehension also grows with us. It is SO important students are reading with understanding and not just word calling.  The more questions you ask your child during and especially after their nightly reading the more aware they will become of what they are reading and thus their comprehension will continue to grow. We continue to work on our written comprehension skills focusing on retelling the characters, setting- where AND when the story takes place and key details from the beginning, middle and end of the texts we read and I read aloud to them. Please continue to look for these graphic organizers to come home. If you see your child had trouble retelling any part of the story, when they are reading at home to you or you are reading aloud to them ask them to tell you about the beginning, middle or end and/or setting depending where they need more practice. We also continue to really review the difference between a fiction and a non fiction text and the special things that make each one different. We did a lot of fun activities this week focused on deciding fiction or nonfiction.
AT HOME: Have your child identify the characters and setting(both where AND when the story takes place) of the books they are reading. When they finish the book have them retell you using key details the most important events that happened in the beginning, middle and end of the story. Have your child sort their books at home into two piles-fiction and non fiction and then have them tell you why we read each type of book and what makes each type special.  Continue to remind your child when they get stuck on a hard word at home to use a good habits they have learned at school to see if they can figure out the unknown word on their own. Please do not just tell them the word. 

Phonics: Last week we learned the -ck rule. This is when the “ck” sound is heard at the end of word. The rule is “-ck comes at the end of a word after a short vowel is heard.” ex: duck, sock, tick This week we have been reviewing all of our learned rules and practicing dictation each day! 

***Students will be assessed next week over all of the rules we have learned this nine weeks.  

Trick Words: long, that, out, read, but, jump, thing, little, what
***Students will be assessed next week on their trick words. The 1st nine weeks expectation is to be able to quickly and accurately read 75 words. 

Writer’s Workshop: Our Writer’s Workshop time continues to go great each afternoon! This week all students wrote great Fall Break News stories that I will share with you at conferences. We also worked on storytelling with a partner. For this students picked a seed idea to tell their partner about. Once they told their partner their partner was to picture their story in their minds and ask them at least two questions that would give them a better picture of their story. The partner would listen and then retell their story again adding the answers to the partners questions and more details to their story. Then they switched and started over. After they went back to their journals and wrote and illustrated the stories.  We continue to revise our writings and have been working really hard to pay close attention to correct ending punctuation marks consistently and independently on our own. We continue to practice using COPS (Capitalization, Order, Punctuation, Spacing) to help us check our sentences that we write. Please ask your child what this means. This is a revision skill we will use all year in all sentences and stories we write. Students are doing such a great job and really growing as writer’s each and every day.
AT HOME: Each Monday students write personal narratives called Weekend News. Talk with child about everything they did over the weekend so they will be ready to write and share about their fun adventures! As they are thinking back to their weekends ask them if their ideas are watermelon ideas or seed ideas and how they could add even more details to their stories. Have them show you how they plan their stories using their fingers and talking through it with a writing partner. Brainstorming and helping students to remember good small moment memories would also really help students! Another fun game is to give your child a sentence and ask them what kind of sentence it is-telling or asking- and what punctuation mark would go at the end. They all also enjoy when I write a sentence with mistakes(capitals in the wrong places, no punctuation etc and they get to help correct it! This would be fun to do at home as well!

Handwriting: We finished all of our letters this week! All letters are now expected to be formed correctly in all writing that we do!


Science and Social Studies: We finished our study of magnets before the break but are all looking forward to our very special in school field trip on MONDAY-High Touch High Tech focusing all on magnets! Be on the lookout for fun pictures on Seesaw from this great in school field trip! We took our assessment on where we live earlier this week and students did great! They are have been working so hard on this standard!  This week we started our unit on scarcity. We will finish this next week.

OPTIONAL PROJECTS for OCTOBER:

Science: Magnets

Social Studies: Where We Live

Thank you for your continued support! I could not do what I do without your support! I am looking forward to conferences and sharing your child’s growth and progress so far in First Grade with you! Thank you!!!

Newsletter 9/12/19

Reminders:

COGAT TESTING: Testing last week went GREAT! I am so proud of every student and how well they listened, stayed focused on the test and tried their personal best! Results should be back in a couple months!

PTA’s Read A Thon!!!: Thank you for your help and support of this awesome fundraiser at home! We found out we were one of  the top two first grade classes with our total minutes read and have won a class Yogli Mogli party next Tuesday! YEAH!!! We also were the ONLY first grade class that had 100% CLASS PARTICIPATION!!!!! YEAH!!!! Thank you for supporting our wonderful PTA!

Our VOYAGE has begun!!!: We are all so excited that our character education VOYAGE began last week! Each month we will focus on one anchor. This month we are working on COOPERATION-working well with others! Each week we have a new action point to support our anchor. Last week our action point was-Cooperation starts by listening to others. This week we are foucsed on Cooperation is all about teamwork! The students are doing an AMAZING job working togehter as a class team to show cooperation throughout the day! We have even started to incorporate our anchor into our morning classmate compliments. If you have not heard your child talk about this at home yet please ask them to share! We are so excited to continue our VOYAGE!

Learning Commons: Our special weekly class book check out will take place each Thursday right after lunch. Please help your child get into the routine of making sure they have their library books ready to go Wednesday night and that they return them each Thursday morning so they can check out new books each week!

Concert on the Green: Tonight is PTA’s concert on the green from 5:30-8:00! 77Zeros will be playing great music and there will be lots of food trucks!

Book Fair:  The book fair is now open if you would like to come and shop with your child or send money with them to go in the morning and shop you are welcome to!

What We Are Learning:
Math Workshop: Last week in math after testing we had fun learning all about ways to make a ten/friends of ten!  We worked using our math bars to create all the ways to make a ten. For example 8 and 2, 9 and 1, 3 and 7, etc.  We learned a great make a ten helper chart and students should have brought an extra home to share with you last week! This strategy is a great building block for a lot of our math through out the year and will be so helpful to students as we progress with our standards.  This week we learned all about subtraction!  We learned the minus sign means we will compare two numbers.  To do this we first learned to flip and compare with our math bars. We also practiced to write our number sentences with words and once we found our answer to read the whole number sentence back.  We practiced subtracting horizontally and vertically. We then learned how to draw our subtraction problems and know now that when we flip a bar to compare we change our drawing to x’s instead of o’s.  Once we had our drawings set up we “lassoed and squiggled” our work to find the difference. Again we double checked with our bars and then read our math sentences with our words. We are working to draw our numbers carefully so our work is accurate. Each day we practice we are getting better and better at this! We are now starting word problems in which we will apply what we have learned the last couple of weeks in both addition and subtraction together to help us solve these trickier problems. 
*** If you child is still reversing any of their numbers as they write them at home please have them correct them and then practice writing them correctly. The sooner we correct this the better. I am seeing improvements every day! 
AT HOME: Ask your child to draw for you our make a ten/friends of ten helper chart. Then have them write for you all the ways they know how to make a ten! Have them explain what bars they would push together and what dots they would draw. Last, have them read the number sentences back to you.  Give your child a subtraction problem within 10 and have them show you all the steps they have learned to solve it and to check it! They should be able to write it, add their words, draw it, lasso and squiggle, find their difference, read you back the whole problem and then tell you what they would do to double check it with their bars! WOW! What great math minds we are creating!!!

Reader’s Workshop: Reading groups continue to go great! YEAH!!! All students should have brought their reading bags home each night this week! I hope you enjoyed listening to your child read his/her books to you! Please read over the parent letter that was in the bag as well! Every day our independent reading time gets better and better. I am already seeing growth with all students reading and this makes me so happy! Each of them is working so hard, applying the skills and strategies we are learning and really trying their best! We continue to review settings of the books we read. The biggest change for this is now students are required to identify and tell two parts for a setting- where AND when the story takes place. We continue to work on retelling in written form using key details the beginning, middle, and end of the text we read. Students are working so hard completing these graphic organizers.  Our goal is to start doing these independently by next week!  Please look for these graphic organizers to continue to come home. If you see your child had trouble retelling any part of the story, when they are reading at home to you or you are reading aloud to them ask them to tell you about the beginning, middle or end and/or setting depending where they need more practice. Remind them we are looking for key details- the most important events. We also continue to review the difference between a fiction and a non fiction text and the special things that make each one different.
We finished our mini lessons last week learning all about how readers build good habits. We worked to read more to see more and to scoop up our words with our eyes into phrases as we read to help us smooth out our reading even more. This week we started our second anchor chart which we will work on over the next couple of weeks in which we will work to build good habits to solve hard words! We started by going over and dropping our BAD habits so we can begin to PICK UP our good habits! We are working to drop the bad habits: The Freeze, The Tell Me!, The Mumble, and The Blooper, and pick up good habits like check the picture, look at all the parts of a word, and get a running start.  
AT HOME: Have your child identify the characters and settings(both where AND when the story takes place) of the books they are reading. Then ask them when they finish reading their books to tell you the main key details that happened in the beginning, the middle and the end of the book. Also, ask them about our bad habits that we have dropped and are no longer allowed to do. We talked together about making sure we are always using our good habits when we are reading even when we are at home too! 

Phonics: Last week in phonics we worked on the c vs k rule. For this we say “k takes i and e, c takes the other three(a, o, u). This rule is used for short vowel one syllable words. Examples: kit, cut, cap. This week our focus has been on digraphs- two consonants that go together to make one new sound-ch, sh, th, and wh. Examples: chat, shop, thud, whip. At home please give your child a short vowel, one syllable word and ask them to show you how we tap our words.
Trick Words: him, said, her, when, then(last week’s words) them, make, some, come, were(this week’s words) Please keep practicing reading AND spelling these trick words! 

Writer’s Workshop: Our Writer’s Workshop time continues to go great each afternoon! Students continue to work to plan their stories using their fingers. Our first step is to think of an idea. Then we plan with a partner to help us get to at least 5 details/sentences and then students wrote and illustrated these stories in their journals. We continue to work on zooming our stories in to a smaller seed idea instead of a big watermelon idea. This allows us to write more details about a smaller amount of time allowing our writing voices to show through more. This week we learned how to unfreeze our characters and make them move and talk-both in our writing and our pictures! We also continue to work to revise our writings to add more details and also proofreading our stories paying close attention to make sure we have correct capitalization and ending punctuation marks. (We are also doing this with our reflection sentences at the end of each day) We practiced checking our writing with COPS(capitalization, order, punctuation, and spelling). We continue to work on adding temporal sequence words to our stories. This week we also learned that adding a good thoughtful ending to our story is like a bow we tie on a wrapped present at the very end! Students are doing such a great job and really growing as writer’s each and every day.
AT HOME: Each Monday students write personal narratives called Weekend News. Talk with child about everything they did over the weekend so they will be ready to write and share about their fun adventures! As they are thinking back to their weekends ask them if their ideas are watermelon ideas or seed ideas and how they could add even more details to their stories. Have them show you how they plan their stories using their fingers and talking through it with a writing partner. Brainstorming and helping students to remember good small moment memories would also really help students! Another fun game is to give your child a sentence and ask them what kind of sentence it is-telling or asking- and what punctuation mark would go at the end. They all also enjoy when I write a sentence with mistakes(capitals in the wrong places, no punctuation etc and they get to help correct it! This would be fun to do at home as well!

Science and Social Studies: This week we have had so much fun exploring magnets! We have been working hard to show how magnet poles attract and repel while using these two important vocabulary terms! We will finish magnets early next week.  We also continue to focus on our unit learning all about where we live. Our goal over the next couple of weeks and the end of 9 weeks expectation is that students are able to identify AND locate their city, county, state, nation, and continent on a map! This would be a great thing to be talking with your child about each night so they are hearing it and practicing it in school and at home as it is a lot of information to learn and keep straight! 

Thank you for your continued support! I could not do what I do without your support! Thank you!!!