I have to tell you again how enjoyable it is to work with this group. Their kindness, happy attitudes and respect make each day productive and fun for all of us!
We started our day looking at this beautiful painting. We were looking for clues about the weather. Ask me to tell you about what clues I used to tell what the weather was in this painting.
We used a new tool in writing. We used an alphabet mat. We can use the pictures to remind ourselves of the sounds in words, and we can use the letters to remind ourselves of what the letters look like, specifically the lower case letters which we use more. We listened to a favorite story, Dozens of Donuts, and drew a picture of our favorite part. We practiced writing labels, that were all nouns, of things in the picture. Drawing pictures and labelling is a good way for children to build confidence in writing unknown words.
In reading, we read an information book and learned about text features. We talked about the glossary, table of contents, chapter headings, and bold print. We will continue to talk more about these text features throughout the year. We also looked at dictionaries today. We looked only at picture dictionaries. Being able to find what we need in them quickly is important, so we looked at how these books were organized. We had some organized by topic and a few organized in alphabetical order. We use dictionaries primarily to just practice writing words in literacy stations. We will use them at some point to fix up words that have been spelled incorrectly when we are taking a writing piece through the entire publishing process. This is not something we do with every piece of writing.
The children are spending a lot of time erasing. Usually I give students the pencils they use, and I remove the erasers. I will be giving them pencils again in the next couple days because they are becoming reluctant to try and write and continue to erase, which leaves them less time for writing. We will be using a "stretchy snake", which they will get tomorrow, as a tool to get them to stretch out the word slowly and write the sounds they know. On the pencils I will give them, they will have a pencil topper instead which will be used to tap the words they write as they reread to make sure their piece makes sense.
We are working on listening and following directions. Many of the students yesterday did not follow directions on a fairly simple paper. They didn't use the color they were told to use for the word, and some used many colors for the other words. I made a point of being very clear and telling and showing them what to do. I gave the same directions several times. It might seem trivial to worry about the color they used, but following directions is something they need to do to learn to do now when things are easier so they are ready for more complex directions later on. They need to learn to attend to what is said and not let our words just be noise. Holding them accountable helps them learn words are important. We had a few good models to share from students who followed directions so I'm hoping the children see it's important to really listen and do what is asked of them.
We are hoping to have a surprise for you tomorrow! I am going to introduce Seesaw to the kids, so hopefully they will be able to do a couple things that you can see when you get access to their online journal. I will be sending a code later tonight or tomorrow that will give you access to their online journal, which is really more of a portfolio of their work. They will need to log on, so if you have a few minutes tonight, ask them to practice logging on to their Chromebook.
Have a nice evening!