November News

Sitting on the Fence

Welcome to Winter!

With the snow comes more learning as our classroom gets deeper and further into our studies. November is a busy month, as we prepare and fill our portfolios and complete testing for our first Report Cards which come out on November 14th. Here is what our learning will look like:

Math – Gr. 1s are advancing in our study of the numbers to 20. We will need to be able to name numbers before and after a given number, and count forward and backward starting at a random number. This skill will prepare us for the introduction of addition and subtraction later on. Gr. 2 s are practicing lots of patterns using numbers – skip counting by 2s, 5s, and 10s, forward and backward. You can help at home by doing lots of counting patterns – especially backwards.

In Health we have begun learning how to deal with our emotions in healthy ways. We will be learning specific strategies for dealing with the strongest emotions – anger, fear, and sadness. Ask your child when he/she is calm how to deal with different situations, talking their potential responses through. This will help them when the strong feelings hit them to work through the situation without spraying their feelings all over other people!

Our Social Studies program will continue with new super hero characters – Making Mistakes Maggie helps us to admit when we are wrong and do what we can to make things right. Later, Managing Emotions Emma will reinforce what we are learning in our Health program to ensure that we have many strategies and coping plans in place to deal with life’s stresses.

Keep up the great work reading and practicing Sight Words at home! The reading scores will definitely reflect the strong home support these little ones have.

Let’s do this!  🙂

 

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Hello October!

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What a beautiful fall we have been enjoying!

We are doing a great job of getting used to the routines of our school day! We have enjoyed some very special classroom activities during the past few weeks.

Zero the Hero

Zero the Hero is a very special friend who comes to visit us every 10 days. He LOVES zeroes! He brings the children snacks and treats shaped like a zero, and always brings us a story and some number charts that we use to practice our new skip-counting skills. We have already seen him twice, for our 10th and our 20th days of school. We can’t wait to see what he will bring us on the 30th day!

Colour Parties

We are learning special reading rules for each colour. We know that in the word ‘RED’ every letter makes it’s regular sound, so we call it ‘No Rule Red’. At our Red Party, we shared our red items from home, wore red, ate watermelon, and played a game where we hid Clifford, the big red dog. Fun! Photos will be posted as soon as I can get to it. We are now learning about ‘Squealy  E’. When we see two ee’s side by side, we know that they are extra excited to be together – they squeal! So we underline them when we see them to remember what they sound like. That’s our new ‘GREEN’ colour rule. Once we all know and recognize these special e’s, we will have a green party!

Testing of letter sounds and Sight Words, as well as reading level tests, will be happening in the next few weeks. Please keep working hard at home to master all of the letter sounds and sight words that are sent home. They will help that learning to read process run smoothly!

Happy Thanksgiving!

May Update

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We are all set to start our new Science Unit! Our discovery will focus on animals and their amazing life cycles. We have had a peek at some frog eggs and tiny tadpoles – our first close-up view of life cycles in action!

We will also be exploring Fairy Tales. We are looking for differences in all the versions of the tales we read, and we have started writing our own versions of Goldilocks!

In Math we have been strengthening our adding and subtracting skills. I’ll be sending home some flashcards to help speed up basic facts.

Enjoy the warm weather!

 

 

Happy New Year!

sunlit-grasses

Here we are in 2017! Want the rundown on what we are learning about this month?

Math – addition and subtraction. Lots of new games have been added to the games page! Check them out! You can also sign up to do some practice on Mathletics. There’s lots to do there, too!

Social – Communities. We will learn about how communities are set up, how they make rules, how they meet our needs, and what important jobs there are. We will be talking to our mayor and exploring Englefeld, too!

Reading – Questioning as a comprehension strategy. We are learning about question marks – how they change how we read sentences, how asking questions as we read can help us to track our learning, and how wondering about our world can help spur new brain growth!

Let’s have a fantastic month and grow TONS of dendrites!  🙂

 

December Dreamin’

cotton candy

December is here, and we’re all ready for some great learning!

READING

Wow! We sure know a lot of strategies for reading words accurately! We have been practicing Eagle Eyes, Stretchy Snake, Chunky Monkey, Skippy Frog, Flippy Dolphin, Lips the Fish, and Tryin’ Lion! (Refer to the strategies page for more details about the way these strategies work). Now we know that if we have tried every strategy we know and we still can’t figure out a word, we can ask for help (Helpful Kangaroo!)

In addition to Accuracy Strategies, we are really good at making connections using Spinny Spider. She reminds us that we can create our own webs in our brains to connect ideas so that we understand what we are reading much better. We are adding a new Comprehension Strategy to our toolbox this week – ‘Questioning Owl’. We will be learning about how to ask the right kinds of questions as we read to track our understanding. You can help at home by sorting out what is a question and what is a statement – we will be learning the difference between asking and telling.

MATH

Grade One: We have another week or so left in our exploration of numbers to 20. Watch for a note signalling when we are ready for our test. Our new Math unit will have us adding and subtracting! Keep up the great counting practice at home! The children need to be able to count forwards and backwards easily starting at random numbers. we do practice this skill at home, but some extra home practice sure wouldn’t hurt until this skill becomes automatic.

Grade 2: Our test date is Dec. 6th. Your child will be bringing a note home outlining what he/she needs to know how to do to be successful. Please let me know if you have any questions before that date to clear anything up!

SOCIAL

‘Emotions Emma’ is our newest Superhero social skills helper! She helps us to figure out what our emotional triggers are, how to recognize when we are losing control of our feelings, and how to properly address and then let go of our strong feelings. Great practice!! We will spend considerable time on this topic – it takes a while to process all of this information and apply it to real life. In addition, our Lego town is taking shape as we all build a business to add to it. We will be learning about some important jobs in communities and how each business helps to meet our needs. The kids are super pumped about their little Lego characters!

December really flies by – enjoy the preparations and activity of this Christmas season – and have a wonderful and blessed time with family and friends when we get to the holidays!

November Came Fast!

autumn-foliage

Welcome to our November learning plan! Here is what we are up to for the next month:

MATH

In Grade 1, we are working on developing a good understanding of numbers up to 20. We are counting forwards and backwards from random numbers in that range, and are practicing quickly recognizing arrangements of dots in quantities up to 10. Also, it is important to be able to name a number 1 or 2 more, or 1 or 2 less than a given number. You can help by doing 5 minute practice sessions at home! The children have a daily ‘Math Job’ binder with erasable pages. Each day we do different things with the number of the day – we draw tally marks, match numeral to quantity, count back and forward, and divide counters into 2 groups to show that numbers are ‘composites’ (7 is made up of 3 and 4, for example). This is a key pre-adding concept to lay down a framework for good understanding of addition and subtraction in the future.

In Grade 2, we have been working at developing our skills and training our eyes to do a better job of estimating. There are times when we don’t have time or it isn’t practical to either count or measure exactly, so learning how to estimate accurately is important. We have found out that organizing objects into groups of ten helps a LOT in getting a fast and accurate estimates. We also have a daily ‘Math Job’ binder. Some of us are learning how to cut a number in half, and how to double it! These daily practice activities are so helpful in helping us to develop ‘number sense’ – a good solid understanding of numbers.

READING

Guided reading groups are going well! I can do more in smaller groups than I can in the larger group. I can custom-design the lessons to address your child’s specific learning needs. We have added several little furry friends to our strategy tool-kit: we now know about ‘Chunky Monkey’ (looking for chunks of smaller words in larger ones), ‘Skippy Frog’ (Skip a word you don’t know, read to the end, and try to put a word in that blank that makes sense). This week we added ‘Flippy Dolphin’ (if some letters can make more than one sound, you have to ‘flip’ the sound and find the one that fits that word.) Wow. So many strategies can help us to read well!

SOCIAL

Our Superhero friends are helping us to learn Superhero friendship skills! So far, we have practiced our ‘Joining In Justin’ skills: these are ways in which we can join others properly, using manners, friendly words, eye contact, and compliments. We need to learn how to wait patiently for a good time to join in, and need to be close enough to the person we are speaking to so that we are not yelling across others to get someone’s attention. Whew! Lots to learn! Soon ‘Listening Louis’ will help us to be an active listener in a conversation.