Sunday, October 30, 2016

End of October

The last days of October are here and there is much excitement in the air. Your children have been eagerly anticipating the Halloween holiday and have been making decorations to fill our room with merriment. I am sure that this Halloween at school will be one that they will remember as we have lots of fun activities prepared! I know that most of you have experienced a Halloween at Breck, but I feel that we should probably review some of the basic facts of the day.
-To start, if you are driving your child to school, it is a very popular day and there is limited parking. Arrive early so that you can get a spot. We will be opening the classroom doors at 8:15.
-Your child should be in complete costume when they arrive at school. In some cases, such as if their costume is too bulky to get through the bus door and they need to put it on when they enter the school doors that is completely fine. However, please don’t send your child with anything that needs to be assembled. We really do not have the time to take care of anything too big...because the parade begins right at the beginning of the school day.
-Our parade and lower school sing along is always a favorite of the parents. If you would like to go to the Anderson gym and sit on the bleachers, we would love to have you join us. It usually lasts until 9:15.
- If you are helping with the party- it will begin directly after the parade/sing a long.
-PLEASE...have your child wear clothing under their costume of have something that they can change into. We are going skating at 11:05.... so they will need to be in clothing that will be suitable under their gear. Also.... PLEASE have a bag that your child can put their entire costume in..... so that they don’t lose any pieces. Thank you!

It hasn’t all been about Halloween in first grade! We have been so busy, it seems as if a day doesn’t go by where I am not astonished with all that your children are accomplishing. I have many pictures to share with all of you, but I have been having issues converting them into a form that you can see them on the blog. We are in the process of trying some new strategies; so don’t be surprised if when I get it working again, you might just receive a blog of short picture videos.

Our science study of rocks has been amazing! Your children have been sponges and can’t seem to get enough of looking at their findings in a magnifying glass or a microscope. Especially when they get their microscopes focused on something sparkly or shiny, it is as if they are opening a hidden treasure! The excitement in their eyes and the enthusiasm they are sharing with all when they make a new discovery is infectious! Thank you for helping them find their 10 rocks. To start we compared our property words, to find that there were many similarities between boxes. They seemed especially interested in a rock that was a conglomerate. I think that they liked the word more than anything. We will continue measuring our rocks and doing other experiments over the next 2 months.

In Writer’s Workshop, we are about to finish our first writing unit called the: Small Moment. We have been learning how to edit. Whether editing means to check for punctuation, looking for capitol letter usage or adding on for more clarification, your children have been working on one or all of the above. We have been having them share their writings with a writing partner who has helped guide the editing process. By Friday, we will be having our first published book celebration.

Our Guided Reading/ Word Work Groups have been in full swing for 2 weeks now. We have appreciated you helping your child getting their guided reading books back every day. We have guided reading 4 times in our 6 day schedule, so plan on having your child read the book or the chapter in the book that we have assigned and return it the next day. There will be some days that your child will be bringing home a book that we aren’t doing in guided reading, but instead it will be what we call a ”just-right” book.

Math! With the new curriculum and the excitement that was brought to us by Cassy Turner (our math advisor), I have been experiencing the teaching of math in a different way. Your children seem to be responding to in a very positive way. By the end of this upcoming week we will have finished our 4th unit on subtracting numbers 1-10. This math program spends a lot of time working on the real world math problem and then the conversion to the actual algorithm. What has been interesting is to teach is that addition and subtraction are really intertwined. We will be doing a few lessons later this week where we are going to teach math families. In a simplistic form you can take the same 3 numbers and write them in different forms.
Example: 3+4=7 or 4+3=7 or 7-4=3 or 7-3=4

Last Friday, we got a SeeSaw app up and running on our iPads. This app. is made so that you can view some of the work that your child has been doing in class. At this point, we only have a couple of pictures on it, but we see that it will be used for more curricular areas in the long run. We will be sending home a sheet that has a QR code and instructions on it. All you will need to do is upload the SeeSaw app and run the code and you should be able to view what your child has done. 

To think that we have only finished 2 months of the school year!


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