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Friday, October 3, 2014

Classroom Summary for September 29 - October 3

Here's what we did this week...

In our Envision math program we learned some different strategies to use when we are adding numbers. Our first strategy was knowing how to add 0, 1, or 2 to a number. Next, we learned to look for doubles (3+3), near doubles (3+4), and addends that make a ten. We even learned how to add numbers when there are multiple addends! Lastly we worked on being able to take a story problem that contained information in a table and use the table to write a number sentence that would solve the problem. We will review Topic 2 on Monday and take our test on Tuesday next week.

In Miss Varrell's reading group, the class worked on reviewing our first grade Fundations skills. We used white boards and gel boards to practice spelling and marking up syllables. We reviewed what a syllable is and then began learning about our first syllable type: the closed syllable. We know that it is a type of syllable that has a short vowel sound closed in by a consonant. For example, these words  have closed syllables:

          rat                    dip                    peck                    bump                   box

We also reviewed digraphs (ch, sh, th, wh, ck), blends (2-3 consonants next to each other and you hear each individual sound), digraph blends (a combination of a digraph and a blend), the chicken letter (u next to q), short vowels (the sounds that vowels make when they don't say their names) and trick words (words that don't follow spelling rules).

Miss Varrell also introduced the class to our first major comprehension skill, making connections. We read the book McDuff Moves In by Rosemary Wells and an excerpt called 'The Library' from Cynthia Rylant's Poppleton to help us practice. We learned that if we stop to think about what we're reading as we read instead of reading through without stopping, we make more connections and gain a deeper understanding of both the story and the characters. We used this skill in our independent reading books each day.

In writing workshop we learned another strategy that author's use to begin writing. This week we used a place we visited or an activity we have done to give us an idea for a writing topic. First we talked with our writing buddies about a place or activity we thought we might want to write about. Then we asked questions to help us think of details for our stories. Lastly, we started to write by drawing a picture first and then using the illustration to create sentences that would continue the story. The more detailed our sentences were the better we liked them when we shared. We can't wait for next week to continue our stories!

In science we continued to work in our tree booklets to illustrate the difference between deciduous and coniferous trees. We also made a model of a cross-section of a tree trunk using a paper plate! We used what we learned in our homework about the layers of a tree (outer bark, inner bark, cambium, sapwood and heartwood) to illustrate its interior. Some of us even made our models into necklaces. On Tuesday we searched our iPads for tree information in the Brain Pop Jr. app and on Friday we went on a fall walk and took some photographs of deciduous and coniferous tree evidence! In a few weeks we will use our evidence to put together a short video about trees using the Explain Everything app.

  • The first session of Pine Glen's Homework Club begins next week. This is an optional after school activity that is offered several times a year. With paid parental permission, children report to homework club immediately after dismissal twice a week (for dates see green information sheet sent home earlier this week). Homework club teachers are available to help children complete their daily/weekly homework assignments as needed. If interested please return the green permission slip and appropriate check amount to the office ASAP. Thank you!
  • Columbus Day is Monday, October 13. There is no school.
  • Enjoy the weekend!

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