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Week of 1-19-2018

Room 214 News and Announcements

January 19, 2018

Dear Room 214 Families,

We made it through our first field trip! A very big thank you to Callie, Tiffany, Matt, Verbona and Vicky! And thank you again to everyone else who volunteered—there will be many more trips coming up in March, April and May and everyone who wants a chance to join will get one!

The kids are busy preparing their own museum about butterflies and moths that you will all get to visit on February 7. They are so engaged and excited…it will be so fun to have you come in!

I hope you all have a nice weekend!

News:

I will write more next week about each of our subject areas, just check out word study so you can do some practice at home!

Word Study—please have your child practice all sight words up until this point! This week we learned be, he, me.

Announcements:

Book Borrowing–Starting Monday your child will be bringing home a “just-right” book to read each night. They will put one book in their folder before leaving school and that same needs to come back to school with them the next day. While your child may not be able to read everything in the book, they should be able to pick out sight words, point to the words they know as they read, and follow a basic text pattern. Feel free to provide support at this point in the year!

*Reading at home should never be a big stressful event. If it’s just “one of those nights” go ahead and read the book to your child and call it a day. IF you find that this is happening a lot, please feel free to reach out to me. Maybe some different books are in order…or maybe I can give you some other supports that might help.

Scholastic Orders—I got so behind in giving you order forms! Scholastic has a lot of books that are good for early readers. I will get order forms out to you sometime next week and will put recommendations on the scholastic website in case you’re interested.

Upcoming Dates:

Thursday, January 25th—math assessment day. I will be in the hallway working one-on-one with kids

Wednesday, February 7 BUTTERFLY AND MOTH CELEBRATION  8:50-9:20

Thursday, February 8—literacy assessment day. I will be in the hallway working one-on-one with kids

Monday, February 12—I am out for a reading professional development

 

Week of 1-12-2018

Room 214 News and Announcements

January 12, 2018

Dear Room 214 Families,

Happy New Year! We’ve been talking in class about how it’s no longer the beginning of kindergarten—we’re in the middle now and expectations are even higher than before! For the most part, kids are rising to the challenge of working more quietly at their tables so as not to bother others, focusing on their work so their brains grow and doing the right thing more often without reminders from an adult. We are also spending a lot of time talking about ways to be a good friend in the middle of kindergarten and celebrating when kids take good care of each other.

I hope you enjoy the three day weekend. See you on Tuesday!

-Catherine

News:

Reading—Since coming back from break, all kids now have a book baggie with books that are just right for them. During independent reading these are the things kids are working on doing (see below) and I am able to meet with each child individually during this time (each kid once every two weeks). Your child will begin to take home a “just-right” book each night the week of January 22.

Guided reading has also begun! I am meeting with your child once a week in a small homogeneous group to target specific reading needs.

Writing—We are hard at work finishing our all about butterfly books so you can read them at our “museum” on February 7. These are the topics you should learn about when you read your child’s book!

 

Word Study—we looked at the uppercase T,B, and F and made lists of words starting with these sounds. We are also spending more time building cvc words like bat, man, bag, fan etc. The sight words we covered this week are do, to, up, am. Check out a fun way to practice sight words that one of our parents shared!

“Game we like to play… as he earns the word he gets to wear it!  Then we take the stickers and at them to a word wall we made in their room.”

Math—Students are now matched with a math partner who is working on similar skills/concepts in math. They are choosing from games that will help with those specific skills/concepts. We’ve also started a new unit about 2D shapes. This week we talked about what’s the same and different about rectangles and squares and also explored shape puzzles.

SEL—We are doing a lot of work about what it means to be a good friend. We’ve also discussed how we are all different in many ways (physical appearance and likes/dislikes) but the thing that is the same about friends is that they care for one another. We read a book about Martin Luther King Jr. and made connections to our friendship discussion.

Working on our museum during work choice:

Announcements:

Fieldtrip next week! If you will be sending your child with a lunch from home please be sure to send it in a paper or plastic bag that we can dispose of at the museum.

Upcoming Dates:

Monday, January 15 NO SCHOOL

Tuesday, January 16 Family Volunteer Time 1:50-2:40. Please let me know if you plan to attend!

Wednesday, January 17 Fieldtrip to the Museum of Natural History (9:30-2ish)

Thursday, January 25th—math assessment day. I will be in the hallway working one-on-one with kids

Wednesday, February 7 BUTTERFLY AND MOTH CELEBRATION Time TBD (early morning)

Thursday, February 8—literacy assessment day. I will be in the hallway working one-on-one with kids

Monday, February 12—I am out for a reading professional development

 

 

 

 

12-20-2017 Newsletter

Room 214 News and Announcements

December 20, 2017

Dear Room 214 Families,

Please forgive this late newsletter. And the late thank you for your very generous gift for me and the beautiful gifts for the classroom. I wanted to wait until I had some photos to show you of the kids enjoying the legos and magna-tiles, but I’ve been so busy finishing up assessments during work choice time that it just slipped my mind! I’ll send some along in the new year!

Thank you for such a wonderful start to kindergarten this year—y our kids are growing so much! And it’s only going to get more exciting from here on out.

I hope you all have a great break and enjoy the holidays! A quick reminder that I am unfortunately out on Friday. If your child’s dismissal routine is going to be different than normal please let me know today or tomorrow so I can pass along accurate information for the sub. Thank you!

Here’s some information about what we’ve been doing over the last two weeks. I’ve included some resources in case you want to work on letter-sound work and sight words over the break.

News

Reading-As many of you saw during Family Friday, we are practicing basic reading strategies—staying in a quiet bubble, doing a picture walk, pointing to words, looking for sight words we know and looking at the beginning sound and picture to help us solve unknown words. When we get back after break we will continue to do this work, but each kid will have a bag of books that is on their level. We will also be starting guided reading in January. During this time I will be able to meet with your child in a small group of kids and work on specific skills and concepts that will allow your child to grow stronger as a reader. More on that to come!

Writing-We are continuing to work on sharing what we know about butterflies and moths by writing full sentences and making sure our words and pictures match. You will get to see your child’s completed books during the next family day.

Word study-we have now learned all the lower case letters! This week we celebrated by making an alphabet book. I was able to re-assess all kids’ letter-sound knowledge. In January I will send you an update about what your child knows and what they need to keep practicing at home. We learned the sight words can, have, in, on, an.  Please continue to review sight words with your child at home! Thank you!-

Math-We continued our work within 5 this week. Kids are starting to understand ideas of equivalence (1 and 4 is the same as 2 and 3). We played a bingo-like combinations of 5 game.

Content Study—We continued to learn about the differences between butterflies and moths. We also began a new class book all about moths and some kids make examples of butterflies and moths finding places to land where they would be camouflage.

Announcements

We are planning our first field trip to the museum of Natural History sometime the week of January 15th. As soon as those arrangements are finalized with the museum I will give you more information about chaperoning etc.

Ways to keep up with sight word/letter sound practice over break:

20+ Fun Ways to Practice Sight Words at Home

https://web.kidsactivitiesblog.com/57189/35-letters-and-sounds-learning-games

 

Upcoming Dates

Tuesday, January 2—School starts up again!

Monday, January 15—NO SCHOOL

Thursday, January 25—math assessment day(I will work with kids one on one in the hallway to assess how they’ve grown in math

Friday, January 26—January birthday celebration (I will reach out to those families in a separate email)

Wednesday, February 7 Butterfly and Moth Celebration Time TBD (probably at 8:50)

 

 

Week of 12-8-17

Room 214 News and Announcements

December 8, 2017

Dear Room 214 Families,

We had a great week in 214! I really felt a shift…like kids know what it means to be in school (for the most part!) and are ready for meatier work. Starting next week we will begin literacy centers which will set the stage for guided reading after the winter break. It will be exciting when that’s up and running.

I hope you have a great weekend.

News:

Reading—we began reading some “just-right” books during independent reading. Kids practiced doing a picture walk first, pointing to words they could read and staying in a quiet bubble so their reading brain could grow.

Writing—we discussed how nonfiction books are different than fiction texts. Kids know that nonfiction is written by authors who know a lot about a topic so that others can learn from them. We wrote books about things we know a lot about. Next week we will begin writing our nonfiction butterfly and moth books.

Word Study—words this week: so, no, go. Letters: v, y. In case you need it, this is how we practice our letter names, associated word and sound.

 

Math—We began our work within fives. We sang familiar songs and pointed out the different combinations of five (ex: five little pumpkins…if three are on the gate, how many rolled away already, how many pumpkins are there in all?). We will continue to explore combinations of 5 and learn some new games.

Content Study—Our second luna moth emerged from its cocoon today! It was a crumpled little ball. Hopefully it will pump blood into its wings over the weekend and be ready to fly by Monday. We continue to write a shared book about the lifecyle of a butterfly and do observational drawings of our butterflies and moths.

SEL—tattling has become a big thing in 214! We will begin talking next week about what’s a big deal and what’s a little deal. Which problems do you need a teacher for and which can you solve yourself/ignore.

Announcements:

-Thank you to everyone who has made sure their child is returning their fairytale book each day to school so they can check out a new one. How’s the “reading” (retelling) going at home?

-If you have extra greeting cards laying around your house (the kind that come in the mail from charities, for example) we would love to use them for a writing center! Thank you in advance if you send any in!

Upcoming Dates:

-Wednesday, December 13 1:50-2:20 Visit the Book Fair!

-Thursday, December 14 I will be attending a math professional developement out of the building

-Friday, December 15 Family Friday NOTE CHANGE IN TIME 8:35-9:00—seeing as this one so closely follows the last, I thought it would to keep this one low-key. Especially because I know it can be hard for people to get out of work twice in one month. We want to show you how we conduct our morning meeting each day and then you and your child will be spend some time reading together.

-Tuesday, December 19 Family volunteer time 1:50-2:40. Please let me know if you plan to come!

-Friday, December 22 Due to extenuating travel circumstances this year, I will be taking a personal day on the 22nd.  Please let me know if your child will be out any days the week of December 18th so I can plan accordingly. Thank you!

 

Week of 12-1-2017

Room 214 News and Announcements

December 1, 2017

Dear Room 214 Families,

Thank you to everyone who came to our Family Thursday yesterday. I hope it was helpful to see how we are learning sounds and how we are beginning to grow as writers. I am so impressed with the progress this group has made thus far! As promised, Ashely and I are trying to put together a video so you can practice the sound motions at home with your child.

I hope you all have a nice weekend!

News:

Reading-We practiced pointing to each word in a large shared reading book. We also found sight words that we know in the text.

Writing-We prepared our best writing for you this week. All work is going home today! Please clean out your child’s folder and keep all work sent home, at home. Thank you!

Word Study: letters v and w. We learned the words love, and, see. If you need the sight word stickers I’ve put them online in the resources section.

Math: We began a unit a measurement. We used a tower of ten cubes and found things around the room that were taller and shorter than the tower. Then we used the math language, longer and shorter to describe what we found. We also continued to practice playing math games with a partner in our special math spots. Everyone is really getting the hang of it!

Content Study: Our butterflies emerged this week! We spent a lot of time talking about what happened inside the chrysalis and spent time observing and drawing the newly hatched butterflies. Look at the posters we made to show what we are learning:

-feed them oranges

-be quiet

-don’t poke them with pencils

-give them sugar water, one cup, because they love sugar water

SEL: we spent a lot of time this week talking about how we never say “I won’t be your friend anymore” when someone makes us upset. It only makes the problem worse! Instead, we say “stop” and now we can explain why we want someone to stop. Usually this helps solve the problem and we can keep playing as friends.

Some highlights from workchoice:

This band has a security guard

Announcements:

Lending library—I tried to send home familiar nursery rhyme books each night with your child in the month of November, however, it became difficult to manage. Not everyone was returning the books each day so I didn’t send new ones home etc. etc. We’re going to start over next week! If you do have nursery rhymes books from school at home PLEASE send them back asap. Starting Monday your child should have a familiar fairytale in their folder. They are to “read” this to you every night (Tell the story as they look at the pictures). It MUST come back to school the next day so they can check out a new book.

This not only helps kids to practice retelling familiar stories, it also helps them learn the book check-out system that we use in class. Starting in January they will be taking home books that are at their reading level (they can actually read the words).

 

Upcoming dates:

Thursday, December 14–I have a Professional Development so there will be a sub in

Friday, December 15–Family Friday (sorry it falls so soon after this last one!!). Topic TBD. 8:50-9:15

Tuesday, December 19–Family Volunteer time TBD–there’s a chance I will be stuck in a meeting at this time. I will let you know when I have an update!

December 23-January 1 BREAK

Tuesday, January 2–BACK TO SCHOOL

 

 

Week of 11-17-2017

Room 214 News and Announcements

November 17, 2017

 

Dear Room 214 Families,

Thank you to everyone who attended conferences yesterday. It was really nice to finally get a chance  to sit and speak with you! I look forward to meeting with the rest of you on Monday.

Here’s a very brief recap of our week.

News:

Reading-we have now read a lot of fairytales. This  week we talked about what all/most fairytales have (“once upon a time,” “happily ever after,” tricks, evil and good characters etc.)

Writing-Wonderful work this week! By the end of November kids will have chosen one piece of writing they are especially proud to publish. We will share this work with you during the next Family Friday.

Word Study-we leaned the letters p and j and studied the sight words you, we, at, a

Math-We did work with our attendance board and talked about skip counting (it came up naturally) and how skip counting helps us count larger quantities faster. We also worked on representing a quantity on paper:

Content Study—we did our first observational drawings of our growing caterpillars and Luna moths in cocoons. We learned about where these creatures live in the wild and why they live there. We also read about the beginning of their life cycles.

 

And just for fun…..check out this intricate bear bus structure!

Announcements:

-Ashley, one of our speech teachers, is coming in one day a week to implement a phonics program called Sounds in Motion. This program teaches letter sounds and a corresponding motion. I will be uploading more information about this program in the coming weeks and we are working on putting together a video so you know the letter-sound motions too.

Upcoming Dates:

Thursday and Friday, November 23 and 24–NO SCHOOL

Thursday, November 30–Family Day 8:50-9:15 (writing focus)

Thursday, December 7—library visit

Friday, December 15—Family Friday 8:50-9:15 (focus TBD)

 

 

 

 

 

Week of 11-10-17

Room 214 News and Announcements

November 10, 2017

Dear Room 214 Families,

I’m looking forward to getting to speak with all of you next week during parent teacher conferences! Please use this link to sign up for a slot if you have not already done so. Thank you.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1hFwQx8t5Zyfyl0D1DaI8Bl3ChIDD9aHXnY4R8QWaBsA/edit?usp=sharing

News

Reading: We continued to read familiar stories at our table. We have also read a bunch of fairy tales and soon kids will be able to take them home to read to their families (that’ll start in December)

Writing: Kids had the freedom this week to write whatever they wanted. Some kids wrote stories, others lists, still others cards, posters and how-to books. Today everyone chose a favorite piece to publish by adding color to their illustrations. You’ll be able to see some of this work at the next Family morning coming up.

Word Study: We learned the sounds for e and r and practiced forming these letters. We are a little behind in our sigh word work. This was a week of review. Next week we will play catch up and study the words “you,” “a” “we” and “at.”

Math: We talked about accurate counting strategies and played a new game, Grab and Count, to practice these. If you’re counting at home, encourage your child to use these strategies as they will become very helpful (and ensure accuracy) when we start using larger quantities.

SEL/Content Study: This week we slowed down routines around lining up and walking in line safely, and spent a lot of time practicing putting on and taking off our winter clothing.

Announcements:

-Book fair money is due to the PTA on Monday. Our class will visit the book fair on Thursday morning. Thank you for any donations you can make!
Upcoming Dates:

Tuesday, November 14–Parent Volunteer time 1:50-2:40

Thursday, November 16–Parent Conferences, HALF DAY FOR KIDS

Friday, November 17–November birthdays (I’ll email families)

Thursday and Friday, November 23 and 24–NO SCHOOL

Thursday, November 30–Family Day 8:50-9:15

 

 

Week of 11-3-2017

Room 214 News and Announcements

November 3, 2017

Dear Room 214 Families,

Sorry to be getting this letter to you late! I hope you all enjoyed a nice weekend…and are gearing up for a four day week this week (No school tomorrow!—for kids).

News:

Reading: I have begun to have individual conferences with students during independent reading time. Every two weeks, I’ll be able to meet with your child for 3-5 minutes, listen to their writing and help them form a little goal that they’ll try to meet by the next time I conference with them. This is one of my favorite parts of the day as I get to work with kids one-on-one.

Writing: Many kids are adding labels and even some sentences to their writing! Check out the sentence we wrote as a group using our knowledge of sight words and letter sounds:

(The shark can eat you)

Word Study: Last week we learned the letter sounds “s” and “d” and practiced making them. Our sight words were “the” and “can.” How is sight word practice going at home?

Math: We worked on our counting books. These will be coming home in the next week. Please keep them! They may be helpful for your child to re-read as the year goes on.

SEL/Content Study: This week we began our content study! Kids wrote about what they already know about butterflies. Then we read a nonfiction book about butterflies and recorded some new facts we learned.

And a few pictures from work choice this week:

A puppy water slide

A beautiful structure (Bear Slip School)

Berry and his family ordered a pizza for take out at Dominos

 

Announcements:

-Please make sure you are letting your child read the little nursery rhyme book to you each night and have them bring it back to school the next day. Only kids who return a book are able to check out a new one. Thank you!

-If you haven’t already done so, please take a few minutes this week to clean out your child’s folder. Any work they do in class can be left at home. Folders with fewer papers is easier for everyone!

-We are in need of some disinfecting wipes now that cold season is upon us. If you are able to send in a roll or two of Clorox or Lysol wipes it would be greatly appreciated! Thank you in advance for any donations you can make.

-Scholastic book orders. I placed a new set of Scholastic book orders in your child’s folder today. Remember, these books are priced lower than they are in the store and your purchases help our classroom to get more books. Just in case you need them, here are the directions for how to order online:

To get started go here:

https://clubs.scholastic.com/home

And click where it says “First Time Parents” to create your account. Our Class code is: PKPFC. There should be a section that says “Teacher’s Desk” where I’ve added recommendations. These are mostly of books we’ve read in class that would be fun and useful for your child to experience again and again at home. Scholastic book orders are completely optional! Please let me know if you have questions. Online orders are due December 1, 2017.

Upcoming dates:

Tuesday, November 7–NO SCHOOL FOR KIDS

Tuesday, November 14–Parent Volunteer time 1:50-2:40

Thursday, November 16–Parent Conferences, HALF DAY FOR KIDS       Please sign up for conferences here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1hFwQx8t5Zyfyl0D1DaI8Bl3ChIDD9aHXnY4R8QWaBsA/edit?usp=sharing

Friday, November 17–November birthdays (I’ll email families)

Thursday and Friday, November 23 and 24–NO SCHOOL

Thursday, November 30–Family Day 8:50-9:15