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Sunday, September 29, 2013

Classroom Summary for September 23-27

Here's what we did this week....

In Miss Varrell's Fundations group we finished up Unit 1 where we reviewed the sound /k/ and its three spellings: c, k, and ck. We also reviewed what a syllable is and practiced closed syllables. We worked with blends and digraphs and added two new words to our dictionaries: quick and brisk.

In Miss Varrell's Reading group we continued to work on learning the routines and expectations of the different centers in class. This week we learned about using the Chromebooks with the Symbaloo listening center, writing literature responses and working in our independent reading logs. Next week we will complete our center orientation and we will begin working with a comprehension program called Making Meaning which focuses on critical reading skills needed for deeper understanding of text.

In Writing Workshop we continued to work on how to get ideas to write. This week we listened to an autobiographical picture book by Donald Crews called Big Mama's. We used the story to help highlight a strategy author's often use to get ideas for stories: writing about the experiences of places they have been. We began writing stories that are 'snapshots' of our own lives: a camping trip, a special moment at Disney World, visiting Grandma on Sundays, etc. We will continue to work on our stories throughout the year.

In math we began working in Topic Two of our enVision math program which focuses on addition strategies. We reviewed adding 0, 1 and 2 to numbers, using doubles and near doubles and learned about turn-around number sentences (commutative property of addition). Much of the first few topics in math are review. However, the children are building stamina and fluency while they are becoming familiar with mathematical terms that they will be reading, understanding and applying throughout the year.

In science we talked about the parts of a tree and what each part does. We focused on the roots, trunk, limb, branch and leaf of a deciduous tree. We began illustrating a Tree Book to showcase our new learning. Next week we will learn about the inside of a tree and if we have time we will begin learning about coniferous trees.

Great Expectations: An organized desk is a happy desk! Take a look at Matt's fantastically organized desk. What a great example for us to live up to! Congratulations Matthew!


  • Scholastic book orders for September were placed on Friday, September 27. Books usually take about 1-2 weeks to arrive depending on the time of year and number of books ordered. As soon as they arrive, I will put them in student mailboxes to take home. :)
  • Thank you so much to all those families who have sent in wipes, dusters and tissues for the class. Although we have been very healthy, this is allergy season and our tissue supply depletes quickly!
  • A big thank you again for all the cardboard that has been sent in for our gerbils. Unfortunately, we have such a big supply we no longer have room to keep the supply in check!
  • Enjoy the last few days of September! 

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