Friday, January 19, 2018

Week of 1/16 - 1/19

Reading
We explored the bossy E pattern in words. Students learned that if you add an "e" to CVC words (such as cap or pin), it changes the word and makes the vowel say its name (cape, pine). You can also refer to this as a "magic e" or "silent e" pattern. Readers noticed these patterns in their own leveled books.

Social Studies
We read a couple of nonfiction books about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. so students could understand more about why we had Monday off. We learned about his important work around peace. Students made their own peace books by illustrating a dream they had about our world. Ideas included "Every child gets to go to school" to "Let's plant trees to make the world more beautiful." These booklets are hung in the hallway for all to see.

Math
We further explored the concept of "half" this week. Students designed "half and half rugs" using squares and rectangles as base shapes. They worked hard to draw lines directly through the center of each shape to make halves that were exactly the same size. We continued to practice telling time to the half hour as well.

Winter Games
Thank you for sending in your photos and activity logs for points this week! Every bit helps. We are looking forward to the Winter Carnival next week. It is scheduled for Tuesday, with a rain date of Thursday. Please be aware that our specials schedule will be affected to accommodate this special event. We will be in touch next week with the final plans for the carnival and what you can do to help prepare your child for it!

Winter Clothing Reminder
I recommend sending in a spare set of clothing for your child. I can store a labeled bag of clothing here so your child can change if they get soaked at recess.

Mrs. Bradstreet

Friday, January 12, 2018

1/8 - 1/12

Happy New Year First Grade Families!
We are welcoming 2018 with some Winter Games excitement and we are diving into some new learning targets in all of our content areas. It is an exciting time to be a first grader!

Reading
We reviewed digraphs these past two weeks. Digraphs are special sounds that are created by two letters such as th, sh, ch and wh. Students identified words with beginning digraph sounds and went for a digraph hunt in their leveled books. The goal is for students to read words with these sounds fluently. Reading groups continued to identify the central message of their stories as well.

Math
We wrapped our up unit on measurement. Students had lots of opportunities to estimate the length of various classroom objects and then measure in both inches and centimeters. We also began to learn about halves, which included designing half and half pizzas and telling time to the half hour. We will explore these concepts further next week.

Technology
We had a blast with Mrs. Hartley this week. She brought a Code & Go Robot Mouse to our classroom. The students worked together to code the mouse to follow a maze of healthy foods from each of the major food groups. The students had to think about what direction the mouse needed to move and how many steps to move. There was some trial and error, lots of encouragement and teamwork!

Winter Games Fun
We are having a blast competing in the Winter Games! Students ate through the rainbow this week, listened to many stories about healthy eating and taste tested lots of colorful fruits and veggies at lunch. We went out for some snowshoeing and began designing a cardboard sled for the Winter Carnival. Next week is all about Family Engagement. We will need your help! A log was sent home in red totes this week. We need all families to complete an hour of physical activity each day, fill in the log and return it school. These will be transferred into points for the Winter Games!

Please remember there is no school on Monday as we celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. day.

Mrs. Bradstreet

Friday, December 22, 2017

Week of 12/18 - 12/22


Students engaged in lots of fun, creative projects this week. We spent a few days working on special family gifts. They are very excited to give them to you!

We decorated our classroom door to show some spirit for the Winter Games. We read Snowmen at Night and then students created their own snowmen engaging in a fun winter activity such as sledding or throwing snowballs. Please remember that we kick off the Winter Games the day we return from vacation (Tuesday, January 2nd.) Everyone received a schedule of events in red totes this week. We are very excited for this special opportunity!

On Friday, students rotated through all four first grade classrooms to participate in reindeer-themed activities including a subtraction game and make-your-own reindeer snack.

Math
We were able to connect literature and math concepts this week. While I read The Grouchy Ladybug, students manipulated their own clocks to show the times mentioned in the story. We repeated this activity for Nine O'Clock Lullaby and Monster Math: School Time. They also learned a trick for telling the hour hand and minute hand apart - hour is the shorter word and shorter hand, minute is the longer word and longer hand.


Technology
Mrs. Hartley gave the class a beginner lesson on coding. Using the Scratch Jr. app, students learned how to choose and resize a character and make the character do an action. This is a free iPad app that we encourage you to use at home with your children!

Next week there is no school. We will see you on Tuesday, January 2nd!

Mrs. Bradstreet


Friday, December 15, 2017

Week of 12/11 - 12/15

Reading
We continued to identify the central message of our stories as well as find "evidence"to go with it. Evidence are the details that support the author's message, such as specific character actions or words. Please ask your children to identify story messages when you read together.


Writing
Our grammar lessons focused on identifying nouns and sorting them as people, places or things. Students circled nouns in sentences and filled in blanks with missing nouns.
We read the story Mouse Views and wrote about our own classroom observations. They imagined being a mouse on the loose in the classroom and thought about what they might see. It was important for them to focus in on the details. Students wrote about a variety of things including the flag, alphabet carpet and the word wall.

Math
We began unit 4 in math this week. This unit focuses on two major measurement concepts - measuring length and telling time to the hour and half hour. Students compared the length of various objects in the classroom to determine if they were longer or shorter than a ruler. They also used nonstandard units of measurement like connecting cubes, square tiles and paper clips to determine length. For example, a pair of scissors was "4 connecting cubes in length."
We also reviewed the parts of a clock (face, hour hand and minute hand) and used individual practice clocks to show times to the hour. Please encourage your children to find examples of digital and analog clocks in your homes!

Guidance
Mrs. Holt showed us how to manage extreme emotions such as anger or excitement. She taught us how to stop, place our hands on our stomachs, say what we are feeling and take a deep "belly" breath. Ask your child to show you what a belly breath looks like!

Technology
The students logged onto PebbleGo to read and learn more about winter holidays. PebbleGo is a specially designed website for K-2 students. It is full of age-appropriate research articles on a variety of science and social studies topics. Students listened to facts about their chosen holiday and recorded what they learned on a graphic organizer.

Thank you,
Mrs. Bradstreet

Friday, December 8, 2017

Week of 12/4 - 12/8

Reading
Our young readers practiced identifying the central message of stories using both class read alouds and individual leveled books. Next week, we will move on to identifying details that are either relevant or irrelevant to the story's message.
We also practiced an important phonemic awareness skill - "playing" with consonant/vowel/consonant words such as top, cat and dog by tapping the sounds with our fingers and then either changing a sound or adding a sound to make a new word.

Social Studies
We learned about St. Lucia Day this week. Students read a mini-book, completed a fact chart and created their own special crowns. They also used their critical thinking skills to contrast this holiday with the holidays their families celebrate.

Writing
I introduced grammar books this week. These are a supplement to our Being a Writer program. We will work in these a few times per week to focus on important grammar skills. This week, we focused on writing complete sentences with a "who" (noun) and "what" (verb). When it was time to write their own stories, students were careful to include both of these important parts in their sentences. They spent some time writing stories about things that make them either sad or mad after listening to Knuffle Bunny by Mo Willems.

Math
We used a 120 chart to play a game called "Missing Numbers." Partners took turns covering 5 numbers on their chart. The other partner had to figure out the covered numbers. Strategies included counting forward and backward, counting by tens and using a known pattern from the chart (i.e. seeing all the numbers in a column having the same digit in the ones place). Students also worked on filling in missing numbers on 120 grids in their math books.

Technology
Mrs. Hartley showed us how to use the Number Frame app to compare numbers using greater than/less than. Students picked two numbers, showed the numbers using ten frames and then made a mathematical expression using the greater than, less than or equals sign. These were compiled into a collage and uploaded to Seesaw for you to see!

Upcoming Dates
  • Wednesday, December 13th - last night of parent-teacher conferences
  • Monday December 25th - Monday January 1st -  no school


Friday, December 1, 2017

Week of 11/27 - 12/1

Reading
Reading groups began to think about the central message of their stories. In some stories, authors want to teach the readers a lesson. As a whole class, we practiced identifying the message and determined supporting evidence using the stories The Three Little Pigs and Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. Then, readers worked on identifying the message in their own leveled texts. We will continue to work on this learning target for the next few weeks. To show proficiency in this target, students will need to understand the central message (or lesson) of the story and relevant supporting details.

Social Studies
We began a social studies unit on "Holidays around the world." Over the next four weeks, we will explore four major holidays including Kwanzaa, St. Lucia, Hanukkah and Diwali. We focused on Kwanzaa this week. Students listened to nonfiction stories, watched a short video, read and colored their own mini-books and created their own Kwanzaa-inspired woven mats to gain an understanding of this holiday.





Science

We were treated to a "Fur, Feathers and Feet" presentation by Chewonki on Tuesday. We learned about animal adaptions in two major groups of animals - birds and mammals. We even saw two live animals - a mallard duck and a groundhog. We were also able to feel authentic mammal fur, bones, feet and beaks.

Math
We explored the concept of the equals sign this week. Students had to determine whether a statement was true or false by finding the total on both sides of an equals sign and deciding if the totals were equal or not. For example, 2+2+2 = 3+3 was a true statement but 4+4 = 3+1 was false. We also began counting and writing numbers to 120.

Upcoming Dates
  • Wednesday, 12/6 is an early release. Students will be dismissed at 12:35pm.
  • Thursday, 12/7 is our first night of parent-teacher conferences.
  • Wednesday, 12/13 is our second night of parent-teacher conferences.
Sincerely,
Mrs. Bradstreet

Friday, November 17, 2017

Week of 11/13 - 11/17

The Circus Ship Kinderkonzert
We were treated to a special concert presented by the Portland Symphony Orchestra. Please visit this link to learn more about the performance (scroll down to the "Brass Kinderkonzerts" section). The students really enjoyed learning about brass instruments including the trumpet, tuba, trombone and french horn.

Turkey Trouble
We read this humorous story about a turkey dressing up in various disguises to avoid becoming Thanksgiving dinner. Students brainstormed and created their own turkey disguises to go along with this fun book. They created "Wanted" posters for their turkeys, too.


Math
Students worked with story problems with multiple addends and explored the math concept of commutative property of addition. They realized that the order of addends does not affect the sum. They did well writing equations to represent the story problems, too (for example: 3 + 4 + 3 = 10). We had great discussions about addition strategies. Students used connecting cubes, number lines, dot cards and illustrations to solve their stories.

Winter Clothing Reminder
It looks like cold weather is here to stay! Please help your children dress warmly with winter coats, hats and mittens. Once there is snow on the ground, boots and snowpants will be necessary, too.

Important Info
  • Early release is on Tuesday, Nov. 21st - children will be dismissed at 12:35pm. There is no school the rest of the week!
  • Parent-teacher conference sign-up sheets went home in red totes this week. I am working on a final schedule and will send home confirmation notices on Tuesday!
Sincerely,
Mrs. Bradstreet