Today we had a visit from Mrs. Kanter. We talked and learned about children with autism. We learned that children with autism may hear things louder than we do, be more distracted by things in their environment, and feel different in open places. People with autism may have a difficult time talking and may not look at us when we talk to them. We listened to a story called My Brother Charlie, by Holly Robinson Peete. Ask me to tell you about what I learned today about children with autism.
We also learned about writing thank-you notes. We worked hard to write more than one sentence. We wrote thank-you notes to our room parents for the wonderful Halloween party they planned and had for the class. We will be sending those home soon after I have had a chance to look over them! The children were very excited about the party and enjoyed everything about it! Thank-you to everyone who helped with the party!
Have fun tonight trick-or-treating!
Today we talked about thunderstorms. We read an information book about storms and used the illustrations to understand the text. Later in the day we read a fiction story called Thunder Cake by Patricia Polacco. This is a story from the author's childhood. While staying with her grandma, her Babushka, she experienced strong thunderstorms. She would hide under the bed. Her grandma got her to come out from under the bed and explained how after seeing the flash of lightning she should count slowly to find out how far away the storm was. The grandma then gets the little girl to help her make Thunder Cake. Ask me to tell you the brave things the little girl did to help make the cake! This is a wonderful story to share with any child who has a fear of thunder and lightning. We learned the same information about counting in our information book, so we learned fiction books also can teach us lessons! Here the story Thunder Cakes, read by Patricia Polacco:
Have a nice evening!
I'll catch you on this week so far! Hopefully, things are sorted out with my website so I can post again from school!
We met with Mrs. Kanter yesterday and talked about recess behavior and how to join in to play with others. The children did a great job discussing how to include others or to nicely say you will play another day with them.
We learned a new game in working with words. We played Mind Reader, which is a deductive reasoning game. I think of a word and the children write down a word wall word they think it is. I give a clue at a time, and we get rid of words it can't be, leaving fewer words. Students can change their word and choose a new word.
We have continued to work on building a list of words we know how to read and write "just like that." These words we overlearn so the children do not need to sound them out when they encounter them in reading or want to use them in writing. Today they took a spelling check-up, and their tricky words will be kept in the classroom where they can practice them during literacy stations. I'll send home a copy of their tricky words so they can practice at home as well. For students who already know how to spell all the word wall words in kindergarten I will be sending them some challenge words which they will practice at school as well.
In math, we learned about tallymarks. We read a story called Tally O'Malley which told the story of a family taking a trip. The kids played a tally game in the car. Ask me to tell you what the prize was for wining the tally game! We will be using tallies more to collect data and to represent numbers in different ways.
We started writing notes this week in Writing Workshop. Notes are fun to write because they are short and fun! We wrote reminder notes to ourselves first using sticky notes. The children will be writing other kinds of notes this week.
Have a nice evening!
Today we learned about one of our country's most important leaders, Martin Luther King, Jr. We studied part of Norman Rockwell's painting, although I showed the children just a part of the painting so they did not see the graffiti on the wall. I'm posting another picture that shows only part of the graffiti so the words can not be read. I told the children about what was going on in this painting to help them begin to understand the injustices our country was struggling with at the time.
We also watched a short video about Martin Luther King, Jr. We read a poem and discussed the word fair, and talked about how it feels when things are unfair. The children drew pictures to show an example of fair and unfair things that were happening during this time in parts of our country. We will be reading more about Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks next week. Ask me about what I learned about Martin Luther King today.
We also learned more about the water cycle. We learned about four important words in the water cycle: evaporation, condensation, collection and precipitation. The children will learn more about the water cycle later in elementary school, but this was a beginning. You may hear them say collaboration instead of condensation, but I think that is pretty close! We made water cycle bracelets today. Ask me to show you my water cycle bracelet and diagram.
We had a Mystery Reader today. Be sure to check out the Mystery Reader tab to see our readers!
Have a great weekend!
Today we started our day with a chuckle, after we figured out what it meant to chuckle. We talked about different words that mean laugh and listened to see how each might be a little different than the others. Ask me to chuckle! This is what made us chuckle:
Ask me to tell you why this if funny!
We read another version of the Itsy Bitsy Spider today called the Great Big Giant Spider. We analyzed a Goliath spider, the largest spider, and sketched it on the back of the song the children brought home today. Then we had a little more fun with the song. We changed the words a little!
In math today, we began to learn about measurement. We compared items today to find another item that was about the same length or height. We used pointers, Spaceman, a tower of ten cubes, and 12 connected inchworms to practice comparing. Here we are working hard!
We read a great book that was donated by one of our families called Boy + Bot by Ame Dyckman. This is a great story about friendship. The book has simple pictures that help tell the story. We studied the pictures then finished the illustrations we were working on that told a story. Ask me to show you my story. If you hear robot talk tonight, you will now know why!
Have a nice evening!
Today we talked a lot about how illustrations match the text. In fact, in some picture books, the illustrations tell more of the story, or even the whole story as in wordless picture books. We read and sang together The Itsy Bitsy Spider. We looked at each part of the story of the song and thought about what was happened. We visualized so we could illustrate the song. We talked about what a water spout is and why it is important to a house, and let me tell you, we have some very informed students about home maintenance! We talked about the importance of putting a setting in our illustration. The students folded their paper into four rectangles and illustrated the song.
We also read a story by one of the most amazing children's book authors, Patricia Pollaco called Oh, Look! This story is about three billygoats who get out of their pen and run off on an adventure. Before we read the book, we did a picture walk through the story and used the illustrations to figure out what was happening in the story. Ask me to tell you about where the billygoats go! We will be listening to another story later in the week by this wonderful author.
We also began talking about the water cycle. We read an information text called Splish! Splash! A Book About Rain! It was interesting to think about how the water we drink was once rain. We will continue learning about the water cycle this week. We also looked at important parts of an information book, such as the table of contents and headings.
In Writing Workshop, we didn't write! We just drew pictures to tell our story. We made sure to include a setting, characters, and made the illustrations show the story. We also talked about the kinds of details we should be adding to stories.
We ended our day with a Mystery Reader! Ask me to tell you who our Mystery Reader was today. Be sure to check out the Mystery Reader tab for pictures of our Mystery Readers.
Don't forget, tomorrow is individual portrait day. Individual pictures will be taken for the yearbook and will be available for you to purchase online.
Have a nice evening1
I'm having some trouble blogging at school. I'm being blocked by a filter, but I'm working on trying to find another way to get in! So in the meantime, I'll try and blog when I get home.
Today we went to the Book Fair. The children had a great time looking at books and adding them to their Wish List. This Wish List is in their folder. You can send in money with them to buy books if you want, or you can come to the Book Fair Tuesday or Wednesday evening from 6-8.
This morning, we started our day looking at this cutie! We used this photograph to think about a story to go with the title. We shared our stories and titles with a partner, then shared a few with the whole class. Readers use pictures to help themselves understand stories or get more information, and writers use illustrations to help tell their story. We are working on both of these things in reading and writing. Ask me to tell you a story about this photograph!
Friday I introduced the greater than and less than symbol, as well as reviewed the equal sign. We are comparing sets of items as well as numbers. Here is an easy way for children to remember these symbols.
Have a nice evening!
Today we had a bus evacuation drill. The children learned what to do in case of an emergency on the bus, and how to get off if they were not able to exit the front door. They exited this drill from the side door. Most important, they emphasized again the importance of staying calm and quiet to listen to instructions from the driver and the patrols. Ask me to tell you about Spaceman! The children did a great job!
In Writing Workshop we learned about Spaceman. This is another tool we can use as we write. Spaceman reminds us to put a space between each word as we write. The children did a great job writing today using this tool!
We FINALLY made our sky windows this afternoon. We will finish them tomorrow and try and get outside to use them. Our sky windows are a way to notice the beautiful colors of our sky, the clouds, and how our sky changes throughout the day.
Have a nice evening!
Today we analyzed these pictures to see how they go together. We quickly determined they were all leaders, although there was some controversy over whether I was a leader or not!!!!!!!! I convinced them, I think! We talked about what each of these people do or did that shows leadership. Several of these people we will learn more about in the next couple weeks. (It won't be Papa Smurf.)
We also learned about verbs today. We read a long poem and played guess the covered word to determine the word using context clues as well as the rhyming pattern of the poem. Ask me to list some verbs. Some of you may remember this fun introduction to verbs I showed the kids today. We don't go as deeply into verbs as the video. The children played a quick thumbs up or down game to tell if a word was a noun or a verb.
We learned about independent reading time today. During independent reading time, children choose books from specific baskets with books just for them. They will be picking some books from reading groups that they will reread to build fluency and confidence. They also will be picking books from a "just right" basket that has books that are about at their level that they have had no previous instruction in. This gives them an opportunity to use the strategies and skills we are working on in group and class to read a new book. This time is also important for building reading stamina. Our rule is that they "shop" for books they say in their self-selected reading spot. Check out these readers!
In math we worked with conservation of number. Conservation of number is a developmental milestone identified by Jean Piaget. Children who have conservation of number recognize that the quantity stays the same regardless of physical arrangement. They know that seven cubes arranged in a tower is the same quantity if the seven cubes are arranged in a different formation without recounting. Piaget found most children to be able to do this between the ages of six and eight.
We visited with our third grade Bear Buddies for the first time this year. We shared some of our building toys and had a great time getting to know new friends.
Just a reminder that there is no school tomorrow. I also created a new tab for homework so that you can just click on the links in the there. I will be adding additional websites for fun but also ones we worked with earlier to use a review.
Have a nice evening!
Today we studied two beautiful paintings and discussed what we noticed about weather. We are studying wind this week, so these two pictures helped us notice some important things about wind; direction and strength. Ask me to tell you about what I notice.
Today we also started working with five and ten frames. A ten frame is simply a rectangle with ten windows in it. We arrange dots in it to see different ways to represent each number. Students can easily see by looking at the empty boxes how many more are needed to make five or ten. Have a strong foundation with number sense is important to deeper understanding of concepts that will be presented in subsequent grade levels, so it is important we give the students a lot of opportunities to use ten frames, dominoes, dice, and other things that arrange numbers in different ways. I introduced several new games to give children practice using ten frames and subitizing. Ask me to tell you what game I played today.
I had a very complimentary note left by my substitute yesterday. She was very impressed with how well the children listened, worked together, and cleaned up.
Have a nice evening!