# Zoo Survey

Our Zoo Field Trip scheduled for Thursday, May 22, is quickly approaching.  🙂

I would love to have all first grade families fill out a quick survey about the trip to help me gather information about sack lunches and parent volunteers.  It will just take minute. Zoo Field Trip Survey

Here’s a look at what we were up to this past week!

In Reader’s Workshop, we have continued our work on becoming experts on the topics we are reading about! We started by noticing how some of the books we were reading were alike. We made text to text connections to share our thinking.

“The book Tarantulas are Spiders reminds me of the book Spiders because I learned that spiders can help people by eating bugs.”
As we are learning new information on our topics, we wanted to keep track of our thinking. We have done this in the past with our sticky notes, so we decided to use them again to help us with our expert books.

Writing:

During Writer’s Workshop this week, we continued with out “All About” books. On Monday, we learned that we needed an Introduction to hook our readers into reading our books. We began our Introduction with a question or an interesting fact.
Next, we learned about how Writer’s need to include a Conclusion at the end of our “All About” books to wrap up our book and encourage are readers to care about our topics the way we love our topics.
We wrapped the week up by discussing how Writer’s plan the order of their books and create a Table of Contents once their book is finished. This way people know what they will be learning before they begin the book. Finally on Thursday and Friday, we challenged our First Graders by giving them a 5 page blank book with an Introduction, Conclusion, and 3 teaching pages and had them write a new book about their Reading topic. I was amazed at how excited and hard working our First Graders were with this challenge. Way to go First Graders!

Math:

During our math time this week we studied some familiar shapes: rectangles, squares, triangles and circles.  We learned that every shape has special attributes that are always true!
We also learned that shapes can be divided into equal parts.  When a shape is broken into two equal parts we call these fractions halves.  When a shape is broken into four equal parts we call these fractions fourths.  It’s important to understand halves and fourths especially when we are trying to share something (like a pizza, cookie or granola bar) equally.

Here are the many ways that we can break a shape into halves:

Here are all the ways we can make fourths:

We are looking forward to studying and building 3-D shapes next week!

WEEKLY UPDATE

Hello from Mrs. Baker!!

What a great first week I have had with your adorable first graders!  It has been so enjoyable getting to know each of them.  If you need to contact me, please feel free to email me at jbaker4@hpseagles.net.  I check my email often and will do my best to get back to you as soon as I can.  I’m looking forward to getting to know the kids more everyday.

Here’s a look at what we were up to this past week!

We had an exciting week in Reader’s Workshop this week! First, we reorganized our classroom library. That was a BIG job, but the kids were such wonderful helpers! We sorted all of our books by topics. Some of these topics included “Cats”, “Dogs”, “Nature”, “Weather”, “Famous People”, “Jobs” and “Holidays”.

After we sorted our books, each student decided to become an expert on one topic. They chose their topic and only chose books from that basket.
As we read our books, we noticed that not only can we learn information from non-fiction books, we can learn from fiction books as well. When we were reading the fiction book “Big Bug Dug”, we learned that bugs can go underground.
We do need to be careful when we are reading, though. Not everything that we read in books is true. In the book “Big Bug Dug”, we saw that the bug used a shovel to dig. Even though it was in a book, we knew it wasn’t true because we had never seen a bug with a shovel before and we hadn’t read about it anywhere else.
Next week we will be choosing new topics to become experts about! I can’t wait to hear about the new things they will learn!

Writing:

This week during Writer’s Workshop we jumped right back into out “All About” books. We began the week reviewing that we needed to know at least 5 facts in order to write an “All About” book, how to use each kind of paper choice, and brainstorming idea of what to write about.
We also discussed that since these books are teaching our readers about a topic, that our picture need to be teaching pictures. This means that week needed to go back to our books and make sure our pictures are teaching our readers. We can do this by adding labels to our picture, zoom into the pictures, add direction arrows, and add captions.
We also wrapped up the week by talking about the importance of using headings on each page of our writing. A heading gives our readers an idea of what they are going to learn about on that page. This will also help us in planning how our books are organized. First graders went back to stories that they had already written and added headings to their stories.
First graders were very excited that they were becoming experts on a topic in Reading and therefore they can use their topics from Reading to write new “All About” books. I am excited to see what they come up with!

Math:

This week, our mathematicians learned how to tell time to the hour and half hour! They learned that the two different kinds of clocks that we use in everyday life are called an “analog” clock or a “digital” clock. We discussed that the shorter hand always points to the hours and the longer hand always points the minutes.

We spent lots of time reviewing and practicing drawing the time on an analog clock and on a digital clock!  The hardest part for the kids is to remember that when it is a half hour, the hour hand is half way past that hour (they often read it as the next hour ahead instead of the hour it is half past).

WEEKLY UPDATE

# Our Sweet Baby is Here!!

I am so excited to introduce you to our newest son:

Castiel Silas Woodring
Birthday: April 19, 2014 @ 5:35am
Weight: 8 lbs. 9 oz.
Height: 21 inches

He is the sweetest of babies, with a head full of soft brown hair.  I can’t wait to introduce him to the kiddos before the end of the school year!

# Happy Last Day of Spring Break!

I spent some time over break going through the responses to the survey that you filled out for my upcoming maternity leave and I wanted to answer some questions that multiple families had.

Has Mrs. Baker spent a lot of time in room 104? Will she be spending more time there in the coming weeks?

Mrs. Baker had stopped in and introduced herself to the kids a few months ago, but before break, she had the opportunity to spend a few days with us and really get the feel for the routine and structure the kids are used to in their daily schedules.  It was so great to have her in their for entire days and let the kids get used to seeing her and interacting with her.  She is extremely excited to jump in and spend the remainder of the school year with the first graders.

Will Mrs. Baker continue to post to the blog?

Mrs. Baker will definitely continue posting to the classroom blog each week.  We work on these posts as a first grade team and she will continue that process throughout the rest of the year.  So, please, continue to rely on the blog as a means for gathering important information about our classroom events (the end of the year is filled with exciting events)!  If you need to reach Mrs. Baker directly through email, her address is: jbaker4@hpseagles.net

I am definitely planning on visiting the kidlets at school a few times between now and the end of the year.  I am hoping to join in on the zoo trip in May and then will for sure be around at the end of the year for our last day of school or the bubble chalk party (more information to come on those later).

I want to thank you again for your kindness, encouragement, and support this year.  I am so grateful everyday to have the most amazing job in the entire world, as your child’s teacher.  I will miss all of my first graders SO MUCH, but I am getting very excited to meet this little baby too.  He is due to arrive this week, if not on his own, I will be induced by the end of the week.  I will post an update when sweet, baby Cas makes his debut!