Friday, March 27, 2015

Track Out

It's track out day! Report cards went home in your child's folder today. I will be holding quarter 3 conferences on April 16th and April 17th. You should have received an email invite and/or a paper invite to attend. If for some reason you did not receive an invite via email or paper, please go to:
2. Click on "find a sign up"
3. Put in my email address
3. Click on quarter 3 conferences
4. Look over the available dates/times and sign up for a day that best suits your needs

I look forward to sharing your child's progress this quarter.

Today, we met with our book buddies from Mrs. Vaughan's class. Our buddies invited us to participate in their culminating science activity for their solids, liquids, and gasses unit. The kiddos made 'purple, fizzy cows' using vanilla ice cream (solid), grape soda (liquid)/bubbles from the soda (gas). Not only did the kids learn something new, they also enjoyed a tasty treat!

Thursday, February 5, 2015

We're Back and Better Than Ever

Language Arts
In reading, we continue to work on
-identifying sight words
This quarter, we have introduced the words down, out, go, little, up, and they
-using our understanding of digraphs such as /sh/ and /ch/ to decode words
Ask your child to share with you the story of why the digraphs make their specific sound
-using strategies to read grade level texts such as....
Sounding out unknown words and using the picture to confirm that what they think the text says makes sense.
Using the "flip the vowel" strategy sounding out a word does not make sense
For example, if your child is trying to decode the word f-i-r-e with a short i sound, the word does not make sense. So, the next strategy would be to "flip the vowel" and try the long i sound, which would make sense.

This quarter in writing, we have
-introduced the "how to" writing genre 
We began our exploration of how to writing by reading all different recipes. We noted that how to writing is a bit different than other genres in that they have materials listed, number steps to indicate what to do when, and lastly, they have sequence words such as first, next, then, and finally. Last Friday, we used all of these elements to read and make a marshmallow spider! 

-This week, we continue to work as a group to create a "How to complete a fire drill" book that we are making as a class. As always, we continue to work on our writing conventions such as starting each sentence with a capital letter, using spaces in between words, spelling sight words correctly, sounding out unknown words, using mostly lowercase letters, and ending each sentence with a punctuation mark. 

In math, we have been working on
-using our spatial relation skills and understanding of 2D shapes by exploring how we could make big shapes out of little shapes. For example, through hands on activities shown below, students determined that they could use triangles, rhombi, and trapeziods to create hexagons.

-We also have been working on using positional words such as above, below, in front of, behind, on, in, and out to describe the position of objects in the environment. For example, the shoes are below the chair

Shirts for the Fun Run
Our annual school Fun Run is coming up in March. For those of who are new to Banks, the Fun Run is one of our biggest fundraisers of the year. To help encourage class spirit, each class will be making their very own team shirts in Art class. Our class will be making their shirts next Tuesday. Please send your child in with a white shirt by Monday, February 9th. 

Valentine's Day
This Friday, a class list will be going home in your child's Friday folder if you would like to participate in our card exchange on Friday, February 13th.

Early Release
Just an Friday, February 13th is an early release day

There has been a tiny change in when homework is turned in. From now on, homework will be turned in at the end of the month, instead of weekly. 

Thank You
A BIG thank you to Mr. Bishop, Ms. Hogan, Ms, Kiger, and Ms. Maher for volunteering each week in our class. They have been pulling small groups to help make sure our kiddos master our Kindergarten goals. 

Monday, December 15, 2014

Last week of the second quarter

These last few weeks have gone by so quickly! Here is a recap of our class happenings and objectives.

Thanksgiving Activities
The week of Thanksgiving, we participated in Thanksgiving themed centers.

We learned about how Thanksgiving today is different from the first Thanksgiving. For example, the Pilgrims and Native Americans were not able to just go to the grocery store when they needed food. To bring this idea to life, we put heavy cream into containers and shook them until it became butter. We then spread the butter on crackers. 

We also made turkey headbands and wrote the sight words we knew on the feathers.

And now on to what we've been working on for the past few weeks

-identifying and describing 2D shapes (square, rectangle, triangle, circle, and hexagon). The emphasis has been on describing the shapes in regards to the number of vertices, and the number and length of their sides. For example, a rectangle has 4 vertices and 4 sides. Two of the sides are long and two of the sides are short.
-identifying and describing 3D shapes (cube, cone, sphere, and a cylinder).
Again, the emphasis has been on describing the shapes using vocabulary such as number of vertices, number and shape of faces, and the number of edges. For example, a cone has one vertice, 1 face shaped like a circle, and 1 curved edge. 
To support this objective at home, encourage your kiddo to identify 3D shapes at home. For example, the salt shaker is the shape of a cylinder. Cylinders have 0 vertices, 2 faces shaped like circles, and 2 curved edges. The soccer ball is shaped like a sphere. Spheres have 0 vertices, 0 faces, and 0 edges. 

Language Arts
-In writing we have introduced opinion pattern books. For example, I like kittens because they are soft. I like turtles because they have a shell. The students understand that in order to state an opinion, you must have the word because in your statement. As always, we continue to work on our writing conventions such as writing most letters correctly, using a capital letter at the beginning of the sentence, using mostly lowercase letters, sounding out unknown words, using sight words/spelling them correctly, spacing between words, and have a punctuation mark at the end of each sentence. 
-In reading, we continue to work on retelling a story in order. We have introduced vocabulary such as character and setting for the kiddos to use when retelling the story. 
-We also continue to work on our sight word mastery as the more words you know, the more books they can read
-We also continue to work on using one to one correspondence while reading, sounding out unknown words, and using picture clues to determine unknown words. 
To support these objectives at home, have your child read to you everyday day. Let them show you how smart they are by sounding out a word a recipe. Go to the library and choose a fun holiday book. Let your child identify all the sight words in the book. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Almost halfway through the second quarter....

Can you believe we are almost halfway through the second quarter? It feels like just yesterday, the kiddos were coming in for the first day of school! We have been working hard all quarter to master our 2nd quarter goals and I hope you have seen evidence of all of their learning at home:-)

Language Arts
This week in reading, we have been focusing on
-sight word identification
A, and, can, is, I, it, see, the, this, like, to play
The kiddos know that the more sight words they know, the more books they will be able to read. Encourage your little guy or gal to see how many sight words they can identify in a day. See if they can identify 5 sight words and reward them when they do. Ask your child to show you the gestures for the sight words. The gestures are important,as "muscle memory" is vital to sight word mastery. 
-identifying all the sounds in CVC words (consonant, vowel, consonant words such as cat, log, pig, etc...) 
Challenge your kiddo to see how many CVC words they can write! 
We continue to work on:
-asking and answering questions about fiction and nonfiction text
After reading a fiction story at home (you can use the book sent home with their homework), Ask,your child to tell you about it. Who was in the story? Where did it happen? What happened? 
If you are reading non-fiction, ask your child to share with you 2 interesting facts,they learned from the story. 
-identifying the number of syllables, or parts in words
Have your child show you the 2 ways we can identify the number of syllables in a word (clapping or robot method)

We continue to work on the genre of pattern books. Today, we had an author's celebration, where the kiddos got to share the pattern books they created this week with their friends. They were really excited that they were able to take their books home and share with YOU!

In math this week, we introduced:
-identifying and writing numbers in the teens
Ask your child what all numbers in the teens have (they all start with 1). Then ask them how to figure out what number comes next. For example, the number sixteen. It has the word teen, so it starts with a 1, then there is the number 6 in the word sixteen. So, the number sixteen must be written as 16. Lastly, ask your kiddo about the tricky teen numbers like eleven and twelve
-using a tens frame to represent numbers in the teens. For example, the number 16 would be represented as follows:
   10                 6
We continue to work on:
-counting by ones to 40 and counting by tens to 40.

Just an FYI about end of the quarter expectations:
We have about a month until the end of the quarter. To be considered on grade level in reading, your child should be able to...
-read a level B book
That is, read a book with an AB pattern. For example, I like grapes. They are sweet. I like pizza. It is cheesy. 
-Identify ALL of the sight words on the homework sheet
The sight words in the level B books correlate to the list you have been given for homework.
-Demonstrate at least 5 out of the 6 reading behaviors listed in your child's homework
-Be able to identify identify all the sounds in 20 words in a minute (phoneme segmentation). Practice for this can also be found in your child's homework.
Please know we are working everyday with your child on these objectives to make sure they are on grade level. Any support and/or practice you can do at home is very much appreciated. 
NOTE: The end of the quarter reading assessment will NOT be completed by your child's teacher. Instead, it will be completed by a first grade teacher. Until then, I will be providing opportunities for your child to get to know the teacher who will be completing their assessment so they will feel comfortable when this person is assessing them. 
Please feel free to email me with any concerns and/or questions. 

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

What's Going On In Room 210?

Language Arts
In reading, we have been working on 
-asking and answering questions in a story. In fiction text, that means being able to answer questions such as who is the story about? Where does the story happen? What happens at the beginning of the story? What happens at the end? In non-fiction text, that would look like asking a question you want to know before you start reading, and seeing if the question is answered in the text. If it isn't, a student should be able to tell a fact they learned about the topic of the text. For example, I didn't find out if panda bears can run fast, but I did find out they eat bamboo for up to 12 hours a day.
You can support this objective at home by talking and asking questions about what you are reading each night.
-breaking apart words into parts, or syllables, then using the syllables to blend into a word
For example, alligator has 4 syllables and tractor has 2 syllables. There are many ways to determine how many syllables there are in a word, but the most common way is to clap it out (/al/ /li/ /ga/ /tor/) or use 'robot talk' (/tra/ /tor/).  When blending syllables into words, we would say /mo/ /vie/. What word would I made if I put those syllables together (movie)? You can support this at home by making a game out of breaking words into syllables and blending them back together. For example, how many syllables does the word mommy have in it? /mo/ /mmy/ (2). Or say what word would I make if I put these syllables together? /da/   pause  /ddy/. That's right, Daddy!

In writing,
we have moved on from
-Thinking and Writing like a scientist. In this genre, we picked objects from nature and wrote about them according to their physical properties. For example, "This is a gem. It is purple. It is smooth. It is sparkly." 
This week, we have introduced the genre of pattern books. That is, books that start the same way on each page. For example, "I can swim. I can run. I can slide." 
In each genre, we continue to focus on 
-starting each sentence with a capital letter
-using spaces between words
-sounding out most sounds in unknown words
-using a period at the end of each sentence
-proper letter formation 
-using sight words in our writing
*as of today, the sight words we have learned are: a, is, I, see, the, this, and, it, can
Ask your child to show you the gestures for these words. You can practice more words using the sight word list from your child's November homework.
In math, we have been working on:
-adding one more to a group of numbers
-taking away one less to a group of numbers
the goal is to further solidify the understanding of number sense to where the kiddos would not have to recount. For example, if I had a group of 5 and added one more  ( X X X X X         X)
I would NOT want a child to recount and say one, two, three, four, five, six, but instead count on from 5 and say 6 (although this does take time). The same is intended if we take away a number from a group (X X X X X   take away 1). I would want a child to mark out one of the Xs and say 5 take away 1 less is 4.
Do you feel like your child has a firm understanding of number sense through 10? Trying extending their learning doing this same skill with a number in the teens, or a number in the 30's.
-comparing groups and numbers to determine which is more, less, and equal
At the beginning of the year, we focused on comparing groups of numbers. However, now, we are focusing on comparing the numbers themselves. For example, which is more? 4 or 9? Which is less? are they equal? In addition, we are proving their responses (9 is more than 4, 4 is less than 9, they are not equal) by drawing pictures to represent their responses.
You can support this objective at home and/or extend your child's learning by comparing number sin the teens.

Early Release Reminder
Mark your calendars....This Friday, November 7th is an early release day

Book Fair Information
Our book fair will be up and running starting tomorrow. Our class will have a preview day, where they can browse the books and write down what they want, as well as a day to purchase books. The preview date and book purchase date are forthcoming. I will email with them ASAP. 

Pumpkin Day 
Last Wednesday, we celebrated Pumpkin Day. 
We used a pumpkin's physical properties to think and write like a scientist. When the kiddos felt the inside of the pumpkin, they described it as gooey and wet! 

We created our very own book to practice sight word identification and one to one reading correspondence (pointing to each word as we read). 

And lastly, we had some yummy fun and made some pumpkin fluff dip:-) 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Our Trip to Naylor Farms in Pictures...

A ride on the bus....

Fun on the Farm...

"What was your favorite part of the field trip?" 
Cade- the slides
Sean- the bus
Isaac- the slides
Daniel- going in the corn maze
Ben- the hayride
K'Yana- feeding the goat
Jocelyn-going on the spooky hayride
Emily-the (pretend) spider coming down on the hayride
Kyra- the (pretend) spider dropping on my head during the hayride
Amelia- the goats
Amani- the goats
Elizabeth-the goats
Luke- the hayride
Caylee- I was scared climbing up the ladder