Thursday, September 27, 2012

A Month Under Our Belts!

Happy end of September! I can't believe September has come and almost gone. Time flies when you are having fun! Our class of 1H friend's is really coming together. The students are forming a community of friendship, respect and remembering that we have a safe place for all of us to learn in.  
Here is what we have been up to during this 6th week of school! {once again, I can't believe it!}

Science: We spent a short time learning about the thermometer and what the degree symbol is and had a discussion about measuring in Fahrenheit. Ask your child what the symbol for degree is! We started talking about evaporation and what happens when when it rains, a puddle is formed and then what happens after time passes. Right now, we are watching our "homemade" puddle and recording our findings in our puddle books. Ask your child what we have discovered as we have watched our puddle evaporate! Ask them what evaporate means. Silly me forgot to take a picture of it before I left tonight! 

Reading: We have started reading the story, The Relatives Came. We have been discussing the differences and similarities of a relative and people in our family. Ask your child what we have discovered! We are continuing our learning about making connections to the text that we read. "When I read _________, it reminds me of _________." This is something that you can do as you read with your child each evening.

Writing: "I can" statements have been integrated into our daily routines to help the children and teachers set a purpose for learning. Our writing "I can statements" have been:
  • I can use the right colors 
  • I can draw a person (no stick people in first grade!)
  • I can color in all of the white space
  • I can write my letters on the line
These are all statements that you can encourage at home, as the students draw and write about what they know about! We are working hard on building our stamina to become strong readers and writers.  

Math: We are working on addition, number recognition and combining two numbers to make a various number of sums. Combining numbers to make a sum of 7, 9 and 10 were our "I can's" of this week! 

You will be seeing workbook practice pages coming home. Please use these to practice math skills at home! I am also sending home the directions to the games we are playing. I encourage you to play these together! 

playing Three Towers!
Three Towers- sum of 10
Here students are playing Three Towers! The directions came home today! 

We also read the story, Rooster's Off to See the World. The student's were then asked to find a solution, while showing their work to the following question: How many animals are there all together? Then, they shared their findings with a partner! Here is what some of the students came up with! It was fun to see all of the different ways to find the solution.

 We hope you are having a great week! As always, please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thanks for visiting and sharing in our exciting first grade journey! 
Mrs. Hamilton 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Weather, Vocabulary &Literacy Block...OH MY!

Hello to all! I hope this finds you well. I have completed my beginning of the year parent phone calls. I have tried to contact all of you to answer any questions and/or concerns you may have about the start of First Grade. I left many voice messages, so please feel free to contact me if I can help in any way. 

Here is what we have been up to this week:
Science: We are continuing our unit on weather. Your child spent the week talking about wind speed. They even made their very own flag to test the wind speed in 3 different places around Starry! Ask them if they had no wind (0), some wind (1) or strong wind (2). We have started talking about thermometers and the different types in our world. Your child brought home a list of different types today. See how many of them they can find at home! We will spend a short time learning about how to read a thermometer and what temperatures may be hot, cold and warm. 
Here is what we know before starting our "wind speed" lesson
Literacy/Reading Block: Your child has started spelling and a small guided reading group. While not at small group, they are taking part in Daily 4. These are centers done independently: read to self, writing, spelling and the teacher {small group} center. Some students are going to other first grade classrooms, so we can meet the varying levels and needs of all of our First Grade friends. There will be a note coming home regarding more information. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me. 
Below 1H friends are writing and reading to self during Daily 4 time. 
They are working on building their stamina {ask them what this means!} to become strong readers and writers. 

Shared Reading/Vocabulary: In first grade we have a curriculum for teaching and learning vocabulary called, Text Talk. This week, we read Little Polar Bear and the Brave Little Hare. Ask your child what the following words mean and give an example and non-example of each. Your child will be required to know an example of each word and it will be recorded and saved for report cards. There was a yellow note that came home earlier in the week, regarding these words and an example of each. 

Math: This week we have been continuing with numbers and adding two numbers to get a sum. We also are working on recording and showing how we know the sum of two numbers. The games, Five in a Row and Roll and Record have come home this week. Please play and keep in a safe place at home. An idea: put them in sheet protectors, use a dry erase marker and play over and over again!
Here a 1H friend is playing Five in a Row!
Here a pair of friends are playing Record and Roll
 As you can see, we have had a fun and busy week in 1H. Have a great night!! 
Mrs. Hamilton :)

Monday, September 17, 2012

Math fun!

Hi to all! Just a quick post. I told the kids I would get some pictures up here tonight!

We have been working on our number sense in our math curriculum, Investigations. The students have been bringing home some worksheets to practice on at home and to play the game of "Compare" or in other words "War." Please use a deck of cards from home! If your family is in need of cards, please send a note or contact me and I will make sure you have some at home. 

Here students are playing a game of "Double Compare."They flip two cards and investigate to find out who has the greater sum!
Some friends are counting to double check their findings during "double compare!"

Above the children chose 4 random number cards (0-10). They built towers and ordered from least to greatest or greatest to least.

We enjoyed our stuffed animal day last week, too! Our class is really working hard to follow the Marion Way! The kids had a great time sharing their animals friends and reading to them during Read to Self time. 

Check back again at the end of the week for a weekly update! We have started Spelling and Guided Reading time. Check back for more information. As always, please contact me if you have any questions or concerns.
 Happy Monday!

Mrs. Hamilton 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

I'm BACK!!

Wow... I haven't updated since last year! This year my goal is to do this as an update for parents each week and to add to this teaching "bloggy" world! {I'm hoping I can keep up with this goal. I completely FAILED last year!}

I'm back and with a new name! Miss Bowers became Mrs. Hamilton over the summer. I'm finally getting used to my new name and still answer to Miss Bowers {even calling myself that too!}

Here is an update as to what we have been doing.. pictures to come! 

The year is off to a great start! We have a great group of 24 friends. We have been working on the Marion Way (being respectful, responsible and honest). We are also creating a Classroom Promise, so we can have a safe and fun classroom for everyone. I will send home our promises, when we have them completed and posted in our classroom. We are almost ready to post them! The students have been working hard to create a great, learning community for all. 

Reading: We have been reading the Big Books: 5 Little Ducks, Rain and I Went Walking.The students also received "little books" to read and keep in their seat sacks. This week, we read a book called Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. With this book, we have been working on comprehension strategies. We are making connections and today we worked on comparing ourselves to the main character, Alexander using a Venn Diagram. Look for it in your child's take home folder! Ask them how they are the same and different, too. 

Math: We have been working in our new curriculum called Investigations! We have a lesson, practice and then follow up with their workbook pages. You may see some of these come home unfinished. Please do them together at home, as practice if you wish! In our first Unit, we have been working on counting, number sequence, simple addition and subtraction and developing strategies for combining quantities. 

We have been playing a game with our number line (or 100's chart) called "Start with/Get to!" Ask them about it! (Can they start with a given number and get to a given number, by counting?) We are working on numbers 0-31 with this game, at this time. 

Science: We have started our unit on Weather. In the upcoming days we will be learning about wind speed, cloud cover and precipitation. We will also be learning the word: Meteorologist

That's all for now! Check back later in the week for some pictures. 

Mrs. Hamilton {ugh.. how do I make a new signature??!! I don't even remember!!}