September 12, 2017
Your child has a green note for you tonight. It is all about our homework
routine, which we are getting ready for this week. Tonight your child has
a paper to do - with your help. It needs to be returned tomorrow. Your
child needs to talk with you about where YOUR mailbox spot is. Next, your
child will draw a picture of this mailbox spot on the white homework
paper. You can then write a sentence about where the mailbox spot is
located. Some children may want to do the writing themselves - SURE! As
long as they know what it says, it is terrific! Of course you are allowed
Your son/daughter has been told it is his/her responsibility to empty
papers out of the backpack each day and deliver them to your mailbox. It
will need some prompting and reminders to build this new routine, but it
is well worth the effort!
Wednesday is library day! Please send library books back to school
tomorrow - in a plastic bag to keep them safe. If your child lost
his/her bag, a grocery bag will work.
September 7, 2017
Day three. We added a new friend to our class today! We are all happy to
have her join us! It is nice to have an even number of kids in the room.
Today we began banking. I hope that you will hear all about it. Each
child has been given his/her own bank to keep inside their desk. Every
morning your child will be given an allowance of ten cents - just for
showing up! During the day there will be 'bills' to pay and opportunities
to earn extra coins for expected behavior. Each day your child will find
the total amount of money in his/her bank and record it in an old-
fashioned passbook. They will also trade so that each bank contains the
fewest coins possible. After just the first day I was hearing the kids
mentally calculating their account balance! "Yeah, now I have 12 cents!"
Spontaneous math is SO cool!
After lunch we continued our science experiment of dyeing rice. On
Tuesday the kids watched me make red rice. We also figured out the
correct vocabulary terms for the tools we were using. Today the kids
helped to make yellow rice. They helped explain the sequence of steps and
execute them. We have also learned how to make the colors red and yellow
in sign language.
"Betsy and Billy" is the chapter book we are currently reading. It begins
with Betsy getting ready for second grade. Today we read about her class'
Halloween party and mishaps with a few costumes. This is an older text
(published around 1945) and it does not have a companion movie so the
children have to practice visualizing what is happening in the story. (An
important comprehension strategy!) We've come across some great
vocabulary words and figures of speech: hem, automobiles, train (related
to a dress), and a 'fallen face' to name a few.
It is hard getting back into the routine of coming to school and doing
work on demand. As a group our attention was waning after returning from
lunch. We're all TIRED! Thank goodness tomorrow is Friday!
FYI - I won't be doing daily updates much longer. These are just to give
you a sense of how our year is starting and about the routines we are
developing. Usually I will update this newsletter once a week, unless
something important needs to be shared. I will continue to notify you
when something has been updated.
September 6, 2017
THANK YOU for all of the classroom supplies! We are rich in tissues,
wipes, baggies, and sanitizer! It is all very much appreciated!
Today we went to library. Mrs. Charles went over rules and expectations
regarding library books. Your child will be coming to library every
Wednesday. He/she is allowed to check out up to two books. (I encourage
two.) One book should be a 'just right' book that your child can read
independently, or with minimal help. The second book can be another 'just
right' book or it can be an interest book. It is a book that may be above
your child's reading level, so they may ask you to read it to them. It is
Today we learned about inside recess. We have a special shelf that opens
just for inside recess! It has fun games, puzzles, and crafts. For lunch
time recess that is inside we use scooters in the hallway! Each child has
a turn to propel him/herself for a distance using his/her hands. They
also have a turn to be a 'safety spotter.' That job keeps the person on
the scooter safe from moving doors and hallway traffic. We LOVED this
We gained two things inside our desks, a writing binder and a math
journal. WOW - TWO BINDERS! The writing binder will remain here at
school and become a compilation of your child's writing work throughout
the year. Today we did a quick free write so we would have something to
put in the binder. Coming soon, we will write every morning for about 20-
We also did a brief rotation of centers today. Students read a short book
with me in a small group. It was a puzzle book so they had to use good
language skills to express how the puzzle on each page would be solved.
Students not reading with me worked independently at desks. Some worked
on 'rainbow writing' some high-frequency words and others circled words
that matched pictures on a page. Both papers came home today.
Please have a conversation with your child about where you would like
him/her to deliver your daily mail to you. Moms and Dads need a 'mailbox'
spot, too! This will also help your child become more independent at
delivering papers and notes to you regularly. A basket or plastic dish
tub on the counter works well for some families. Others have a pocket bin
on the wall. Telling about this mail delivery spot will be your child's
first homework assignment - coming up next week sometime.
THANK YOU for returning all the paperwork so promptly! As I go through
it, I may return pages to you for parts that are incomplete. There will
be a sticky note attached. Please return them ASAP.
September 5, 2017
We had a TERRIFIC first day of school! We practiced a fire drill and had
our first community meeting of the year. Our first PBIS initiative will
be the cafeteria so behavior expectations of safe, respectful, and
responsible were reviewed via a 'Family Feud' role play by teachers.
In class we read a story about a teacher who had first day jitters. We
began a chapter book about a girl named Betsy who is getting ready to
begin second grade. We talked about our dreams and wishes for the school
year and posted them on the hallway bulletin board. We also did a science
experiment where we dyed rice red.
Please ask your child to deliver papers to you. There are some you will
need to fill out and return ASAP. THANKS!