Monday, January 14, 2019

What We Are Learning

Hello Families!

Here are some skills we are practicing in the classroom that you can practice at home:


  • Counting to 100 by 1s and 10s. This can be done during a car ride, before bed, or while hanging out at home! 
  • Writing numbers 1-20. Encourage your student to write the digits in the correct direction and order (making sure 19 is written with the 1 first, then the 9). We have just started reading and writing teen numbers. Tell your student a teen number, and see if they can write it independently!
  • Our 100th Day of School is coming up in February! We are going to have activities throughout the day to celebrate. One of them will be counting out a special snack to bring to the classroom so we can make a 100th Day of School trail mix. (Be on the lookout for a note coming home soon) To prepare for this, you can practice counting big collections of items (pennies, buttons, etc.) by grouping them by 10s. 
  • We have been learning about the opinion writing style. Students know opinions as "how someone feels about something". We are reading a lot of books and then writing our opinions about them. This week we are reading Should I Share My Ice Cream? by Mo Willems and will form an opinion on "Should Gerald share his ice cream?" and then provide reasons
  • Students are still practicing stretching out sounds in words. Your child can do this at home by writing notes to family members, writing a story, or helping with a grocery list. It is important you prompt them with "What sounds do you hear in that word?" instead of just telling them the letters.
  • Having your student read their reading program book at home is incredibly important. It allows them to showcase their reading skills to you and for you to celebrate their hard work. Often times they are just memorizing the text from reading it earlier at school and that is okay!! That is part of the process of learning how to read, but it is still important to read it at home with them.
  • Reading Comprehension: reading is not only being able to read the words, but to understand what is being read! After reading any type of book, ask them what the story was about. Students should be able to recall the beginning, middle, and end of the story, the setting (where the story takes place), and who are some of the characters. One of the more difficult tasks is thinking beyond the text and answering questions that are not directly in the text. For example, see if they are able to make a connection to the story, make a prediction of what might happen next, tell how a character is feeling, or why they might have acted the way they did. 
  • Sight Words! In your student's reading program bag they should have a ring of sight words. These will help with their fluency when reading and cannot be stretched out. They just have to know them by sight! If your student has mastered them, they should be able to look at the word and say it within three seconds. Here is a list of what sight words we have practiced in the classroom: a, am, and, can, I, it, is, in, like, look, me, my, the, you
  • Reading Strategy: Check the Pictures. This is a strategy we have been working on in reading groups. When students come across a tricky word, they can try to look at the picture to see if it helps them. Eventually, students will know to use this strategy without prompting. 
  • Main Idea: We have been reading non-fiction texts in the classroom and discussing what the main idea is, using the definition as "what the story is mostly about". The majority of the time, the title gives away what the main idea is (If we are reading a story titled Dolphins, most likely the main idea of the story is dolphins). We are also beginning to include key details or important information that the author taught us. Next time you read a nonfiction text (which students really enjoy reading!), ask them what the main idea of the story is and see if they can recall a detail or two. 
Image result for kelso's choices
  • In Guidance, students have been learning about Kelso's Choices, a wheel of different ways to problem solve. Here is the wheel that we have hanging up in our classroom. Students are encouraged to solve a small problem by trying out two different strategies before finding an adult. This also might be a great tool to use at home :)