Monthly Archives: March 2016

Happy Spring Break!

If you are looking for something to do over spring break, I have an idea for at least 120 minutes of your time off:  Learning!  All students who spends 120 MINUTES or MORE engaged in reading or online learning (120 total minutes over all the days of break), will be entered into a drawing for a $25 AMAZON GIFT CARD.

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Online Options:  MOBYMAX RAZ KIDS, MATHFACTSPRO, XtraMath.

Reading Options: Listen to an audio book or a REAL PERSON READ or  JUST READ on your own.

Did you know that listening to a story stimulates children’s imaginations and emotions, exposes children to rich language patterns, new vocabulary words and a variety of texts?  If you need ideas for great family friendly audio books, check the GEEKMOM / GEEKDAD Blog.  This is a great idea if your child struggles to stay focused reading or if you are in the car traveling.

If you read or listen to a book, enter your total  minutes here.

P.J. Day!

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It’s been a busy week at school so we thought the first graders at Georgetown Elementary should have a comfy, cozy day tomorrow!!

Thursday, March 31st will be a P.J. Day in our classroom.  Your child may come to school wearing their favorite pajamas, slippers, and robe, but no stuffed animals please!

Week 28!

We have a busy four day week filled with fun!!!

March 30 – Library Day

April 1 – April 10 – Spring Break

Have a wonderful spring break!!!  Enjoy lots of rest, relaxation, and hopefully sunshine too!!!  I wish you safe travels if your family is vacationing somewhere outside of West Michigan.  See you soon!!!

Spring Break Contest: All students who spends 120 MINUTES or MORE engaged in reading or online learning (120 total minutes over all the days of break), will be entered into a drawing for a $25 AMAZON GIFT CARD.

Online Options:  MOBYMAX RAZ KIDS, MATHFACTSPRO, XtraMath.

Reading Options: Listen to an audio book or a REAL PERSON READ or  JUST READ on your own.  Enter your total reading minutes here.   If you need ideas for great family friendly audio books, check the GEEKMOM / GEEKDAD Blog.

Math Update!

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).

Reading Update!

In Reader’s Workshop, we started a new unit focused on learning from all types of texts. We filled bags with different topics (dogs, dinosaurs, weather, plants, presidents, etc.)! The students are partnered up with another student and work with a bag of books that focus on their big idea.  Some of the books from their topic are nonfiction and some are fiction.  The first graders spend time each day reading through the books on their topic to see what they can learn and teach others about their topic.

These little first grade researchers had a blast digging into their books to see what they could find and sharing their learning with the class.

Week 27!

Only 9 school days until spring break!!!  It has been chilly at recess, so please keep sending your first grader with appropriate weather gear for outside play.

March 20 – First day of SPRING!

March 23 – Library Day

We are starting new units in math, reading, and writing this week. Please keep up your homework routines of five nights of reading and math fluency each week.

Reading Update!

We finished up our reading unit focused on decoding complex words. Throughout the unit, we reviewed our animal friend strategies and introduced new strategies for decoding words with more complex vowel sounds/combinations. Keep a lookout for tricky vowel sounds in words that your child gets stuck on while they are reading with you. Point out those vowels to your child and help them to figure out what sound they are making in that word. The more they take notice of vowel sounds, the more aware they will become and remember which vowel combinations make which sounds.

Next week, we will move onto a unit focused on learning from all different genres of texts.

Math Update!

This week, we finished up our Comparisons and Data unit with some review and an assessment. Our first graders did some great thinking as they sorted and organized data and solved comparison stories. Thank you for continuing to help your first grader with math work that comes home. Your role as Math Buddy is very important as your child practices math skills at home.

We look forward to stretching our brains in new ways as we learn about TIME and MEASUREMENT in our next math unit!

Writing Update!

In Writer’s Workshop, we prepared to celebrate all that we have learned in this unit of writing.  This unit has focused on using real authors as mentors and learning what they did, that we can also do in our writing.

So, we picked our best story and then checked to make sure it had everything we had learned from our mentors: exciting lead, show, NOT tell, ellipses, the heart of our story in the end, etc.  Once we had revised our stories to make them even better, we edited them to make them easy to read.  We looked for: finger spaces, neat handwriting, capital letters, punctuation, and word wall words.

Then, in preparation for our celebration, we studied our authors again and noticed that they had added a cover with a title, a dedication page, and an all about the author page. And just like them, we tried it too!  If the stories don’t entertain you, the about the authors pages will!   Keeping with the theme of using other authors as our mentors, part of our celebration included adding book reviews to our friends’ stories. Check out some of the compliments they added to the back of their classmates stories!

 It was such a fun celebration of all we’ve learned!!!