Another Outstanding Week
Keeping Up With Kindergarten
It has been a busy couple of weeks! In math, we have been learning about subtraction! We were introduced to a special subtraction friend, Linus the Minus. “Linus the Minus is naughty young lad, always taking away. He is oh so bad!” He reminds us that when we subtract we take things away. This week we learned about different strategies that helps us subtract. Some subtraction strategies are using counters, drawing dots, using a number line, and putting the first number in our head and counting backwards.
Last week in Ms. Staruch’s class, we began to study a new ecosystem in Reader’s and Writer’s Workshop- The desert! We have learned all about living and non-living things in the desert, desert animals, and desert plants. We have been working hard writing facts about these desert topics as well. We have been finding lots of “Wow” facts in our non-fiction books and have loved sharing them with our friends. Did you know that sometimes deserts are cold and have snow? Did you know that camels store water in their humps to keep them cool? This week we enjoyed reading the fiction story Manana Iguana that takes place in the desert. We made predictions about what we thought would happen in the book, wrote retells about the story, and thought about what we would do if we were the Iguana. We also thought about if we would want to live in the desert or not! Make sure to ask your child if they would want to live there or not!
Last week In Mrs. Lakeway’s class, we continued to focus on retelling a story. We read Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs to go along with our weather unit in science. The students loved this book! We practiced restating the question in our answers while attacking comprehension questions. Students worked with a partner and by themselves to do this. This week we listened to the the story Pickles To Pittsburgh, which is the sequel. We dove further into our comprehension strategies and did some comparing and contrasting. We also thought about how we might have rewrote the endings of the stories if we were the author! Lots of great thinking going on in Room 1!
As we are more than half way through the year, our crayon supply is dwindling. If anyone finds any great deals on crayons, a donation to our class would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!
Sight words from the last three weeks: Find, good, they, funny, who, blue, ran, for, three
Learning and Fun in Grade One!!!
As the second trimester came to a close, our first graders were working quite diligently on completing end of trimester assessments and units in Math, Reading, Writing, and Fundations.
The mad scientists of grade one had lots of fun “Egg-sperimenting”. Using vinegar and eggs, one egg was placed in a container with vinegar. The other egg was covered in toothpaste and placed in a different container with vinegar. Using the scientific method, our scientists made predictions and wrote the procedure. After 24 hours and much observation and even touching the eggs, the scientists discussed and wrote about the transformation of the eggs. Finally, they all came to a conclusion about what they learned from the egg-speriment. Make sure you ask your little scientist what he/she learned this week and what it means for their teeth. How egg-citing it was!!!!
Our focus in writing this trimester will be “Opinion Writing”. We began this unit by reading “Hey Little Ant.” After the story, students turned and talked to discuss if the ant should be stepped on or not. Students had to support their opinions with a list of reasons why or why not. As we continue with this unit, students will be writing their own opinion about different topics, writing an opening sentence, stating their reasons to support their opinion and ending with a concluding sentence. It sure is amazing what first graders can do!!!!
March may have come in like a lion, but it looks like the weather is finally warming up and hoping for the luck of the Irish that we shall have a beautiful weekend.
What's New In Grade Two
Do you believe in leprechauns? Have you ever considered trying to catch one? What would you use? How would it look? What would you name your contraption?
After listening to the story How to Catch a Leprechaun, our brains were bursting with different ideas on just how each of us would design a tricky trap to catch a leprechaun. We gathered many, many recyclables and spread them out all over the art room. After browsing the materials, we each sketched a blueprint to guide us while we constructed our contraptions. Once each blueprint was stamped with approval, our wheels were in motion and the construction zone opened in full force! See the bottom of this message for some student samples.
THRILLS IN THIRD
We’ve had another full and busy week in grade three! Our focus for Math has been mastering Perimeter and integrating our knowledge of both Area and Perimeter. The students worked very hard to practice some tricky calculations and keep the different rules for these skills clear in their heads. Their efforts were rewarded with a Fun Friday “Escape Room” challenge where they worked in teams to find hidden Area and Perimeter tasks around the school and crack secret codes to beat different levels of the challenge. It was a fun way to end the week and our study of these often difficult topics. During Writing and Intervention this week we have been focusing on how to break down long reading passages and respond to constructed response questions. The final drafts of all of the students’ writing is showing great improvement! In Reading we continue to work on our Natural Disaster projects and this week have been diving back into our research and using nonfiction texts to determine the different hazards and impacts each disaster brings as well as how people can prepare and stay safe before, during and after the disaster. We look forward to starting our final disaster projects next week. Finally, the highlight of the week in third grade was the arrival of our incubators and eggs. After an amazing presentation by an educator from Casey Farm, our classroom incubators were set up and we will be studying the development of a baby chick as we monitor the progress of our class eggs. It is a very egg-citing time to be in the third grade! Special thanks to the PTO for again sponsoring this much anticipated experience. Have a wonderful weekend!
Learning More in Grade 4
Students have been busy working on their animal books. They love creating these writing pieces!! This has been our focus during writing time. Their books are coming along nicely. After students complete their individual books, they will start preparing some group presentations. All of this wonderful work will be shown on Teaching and Learning Night.
Fractions have been our focus in math this week. Students worked on comparing and simplifying fractions. They are having fun working with hands on materials while exploring these concepts.
Students will start to virtually travel through the US regions. We will start in the Northeast. They will learn about the landscape, climate, history, and what life is like in the region today. They are also learning the capitals of these states!! Students will work in groups as they explore the regions.
The Fabulous Five
How do the characters’ relationships to each other, to the setting, and the plot illuminate the historical event in a historical fiction novel?
In reading workshop, we have begun reading our historical fiction novels. We have been working on how historical events can shape a character’s relationship with other characters and how the reader develops empathy for main and secondary characters in the text. To demonstrate what we have learned, ask your child to share with you what they have recorded in their Key Moment/My reaction in the shoes of the character chart they are working on in class. As students are reading and discussing their chapters, they are pausing to consider what a character (even the villain) sees and thinks!!
Fractions will be our focus in math over the next few weeks. The students are developing skills that will help them master computation of fractions. They have worked on finding the greatest common factor (GCF), simplifying fractions, finding the least common multiple (LCM), and comparing fractions by finding the least common denominator (LCD). These foundational skills and strategies will help them become fluent in adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing fractions.
In writing workshop, the students are developing an informational writing piece on the career of their choice. Students are utilizing their research skills to develop a well written, coherent, five paragraph essay. They are focusing on writing interesting leads that draw the reader in and strong conclusions that wrap-up their writing and leave the reader with something to think about. As always, they know that they are responsible for the focus correction areas (FCAs) that we have been working on all year.
Spring Concert Review
Kudos to our entire school for a spectacular concert this past Thursday evening. All grade levels did an outstanding job. Our students truly shined and our families were so proud. Thank you to Mrs. Preston for coordinating an amazing show. From beginning to end- our students showed just how special they are!