January News

In reading we are focusing on comprehension skills.  To comprehend a text, we need to think while reading and then answer questions about the text.  Please practice this very important skill at home.  You can always start your conversation about what your child is reading with “Please tell me what happened in the book.”

In writing, we are learning to write our opinion.  We discovered the difference between a fact and an opinion.  We love sharing what we think, so giving our opinion is quite easy for us!  The students are learning to write, “I think” and then give their reasons after writing the word “because”.  Ask your child to tell you more!

In math we are learning to use a new mathematical model-the number line. Students are using both open and closed number lines and are exploring addition and subtraction number combinations.  They are also using the number line to practice skip counting in multiples of 5 and 10, write inequality statements, and find the difference between two numbers.

We are really focusing on our handwriting skills.  Please remind your child to write with lowercase letters and to start letters by writing from the top!  We are practicing writing letters in our Handwriting Without Tears book.

Report cards will be sent home at the end of the week.  I am SO impressed by everyone’s progress!  You should be very proud of your first grader!


Happy New Year!

Welcome back and to a happy and healthy 2018!
The students enjoyed a fabulous winter party the day before break and were put in a festive mood with games, crafts, and food! A special thank you to our room parents and parent volunteers for organizing!
Our first few days back were filled with remembering our classroom routines and “showing what you know” on reading, writing, and math assessments. The students were very happy at be back at school with their friends!
During reading, we learned about bossy r and how the r bosses the other vowels around to make a different sound. Ask your child to tell you more! In reading groups, we are focusing our efforts on comprehension and going beyond the text to understand the author’s meaning.
Our new social studies unit is about every day heroes. We will spend some class time discussing how real heroes are different from superheroes. The students will be learning more about some special heroes in the weeks to come.
In math, we are finding ways to solve equations with missing numbers.  We also are learning to compare sets of numbers and how to find the difference between two numbers.  The first graders are beginning to tell story problems to match the equations they need to solve.

Animals at school!

We were thrilled to welcome the Flying Fox Conservation Fund to present a variety of interesting animals to our students today!  Everyone had the chance to see the animals up close!  We loved seeing the chinchilla, python, opossum, bat, parrot, kinkajou, and of course our absolute favorite, Steve the Sloth!

Ask your child to tell you all about it!

November News

Thank you all for attending parent/teacher conferences! It was lovely to share your child’s progress so far in first grade!

During reading, we are finishing up our short vowel sounds. We are working on our comprehension skills by identifying the parts of the story including the characters, setting, plot, and solution. We continue to make lists of words we can read that follow the vowel pattern we are studying. We have quite the collection of words already in our reading notebooks!

We finished our small moment stories and had a writing celebration in the classroom. We are officially authors now! Next up is our nonfiction writing unit where the students learn to write a “teaching” book by choosing a topic they are experts about. We are learning to think of a topic and planning it out by saying it on our fingers. Then we write the words!

We began our study of animals in science. First, we learned about different types of scientists and discovered that even kids can be scientists! We are identifying, sorting, and classifying different types of animals. The students really enjoyed drawing and labeling an animal of their choice!

We are working through addition strategies using dominoes.  We are learning to add by counting the pips (dots) and counting on by starting with one side of the domino.  We love the game “Domino Top Draw” and using the iPads to play “Math Slide” and “Math Match”.  We also practice adding one more and subtracting one less using our math shakers!


October News

During reading, we are working on strategies to help us become better readers. We learned about “Eagle Eye” which reminds us to look at the picture to help us with unknown words. We also practiced “Skippy the Frog” which tells us to skip an unknown word and hop back to it later.

Every day we sort our words for the week. We practice through illustrating, writing the words in different ways, and meeting in a small group with a teacher. On Fridays, we glue our words to the sort.

We are continuing to write small moment stories and think of a thing that happened to us or a thing we do.  We are beginning to bring our stories to life by “unfreezing” the people and writing about how they feel.  We have learned to make our characters move and talk!  Ask your child to tell you how!

We are learning more about the 7 Habits in social studies. We are finding out how to “Put First Things First” and think “Win-Win”!  Ask your child to tell you more about these useful habits.

Building and writing 2 digit numbers is our focus in math. We played several games to learn how to make 2 digit numbers using the numbers up to 100.  We also review ways to make ten using a ten frame and how to understand that teen numbers are 10 plus more using a double ten frame.

For our social emotional studies, we are discovering how to use our “attent-o-scopes” and keep our focus on the speaker. We can use “self talk” to remind us what to do!

A Peek at Guided Math

Our guided math groups are underway in first grade!  The students love working in small groups and have a variety of learning opportunities through working with the teacher, counting practice, vocabulary notebooks, iPad ten frames/number lines, dice games, and partner card games.  Please ask your child to tell you more!



September News

The students are working on establishing routines, following directions, and where to put their belongings. We are starting to work together and synergize whenever it’s time to go to a specials class. Ask your child what it means to synergize!

During reading, we are meeting in our small, guided reading groups. We worked very hard to increase our reading stamina and can read quietly as a class for 10 minutes! Other reading activities include read to self, read with someone, listen to reading, and word work.

Students were given their new sorts this week and are practicing sorting a different way each day.

We’ve begun writing our small moment stories in writer’s workshop. Favorite topics include our families and sports! Thinking of new topics is still tricky for us, so we are sharing stories and ideas with our writing partners!

We are studying the 7 Habits in social studies. During this time we are reading the 7 Habits of Happy Kids and learning ways in which to follow the habits at home and school. Please click back on my home page to learn more about each habit.

For our social emotional studies, we use a program called Second Step. We are exploring the skills we need for listening and learning. On occasion, homework from this program will be sent home to reinforce learning.

In handwriting we are practicing “frog jump” capitals and “magic c” lowercase letters. We love the song, “Where do you start your letters?” Please ask your child for the answer!

Measurement is our focus in math and we are learning the new vocabulary words of compare, measure, and unit. We are measuring with non standard units including tiles, paper clips, string, and unifex cubes.