St. Nicholas Day!

We loved talking about Santa Claus, elves and St. Nicholas this week!

We started off with one of our favorite stories, Santa’s Stuck! Yes, Santa ate a few too many sweets in this story and gets stuck in the chimney, but with some creative teamwork the day is saved! You can see that all of our kiddos did their own creative writing and added it to a cute little chimney on our line out front.  We also read a story called, How to Catch an Elf.  This prompted a writing piece about what would make us good elves, along with a fun little “s-elfie” which is on the line with Santa! We even squeezed in a little time for the Grinch.  This project included writing about things that make us feel “like a grinch” and using a Dr.Seuss app for a little extra fun.  Look for these in our classrooms!

In Math, we have shifted to working on the concept of part-part-whole. This may sound easy, but we are working forward and backward in an equation (ie: 6+8=_, and _=8+6) and identifying multiple ways to make numbers (ie: a game called peas and carrots where you have 7 vegetables.  How many combination of peas and carrots can you make?) This is already so engaging.

In Social Studies, we’ve been practicing, practicing, practicing to get ready for our play.  We have been reading books about the Nativity to help us understand the story we are telling with our songs and our special costumes.  We were also assigned all of our special roles in the play.  The kids are EXCITED!

The kids in 2A came in to help us practice our songs, and we were inspired!!

We all took part in the Renaissance assessment this week, as well.  This test evaluates how your child has grown since the September test date, as well as their approximate working grade level.  As you may recall, these tests are done on the i-pads with headphones and monitored by the classroom teacher.  There is no limit to how high the kids can score, and tests are completed in about 15 minutes.

Next week, we will be studying reindeer!! We’ll be reading some fun fiction (and nonfiction) stories and doing a few little projects to go along with them.  We’ll also be working on our St. Nicholas Day performance which is this coming Friday, 12/13 at 2:00 in they gym.  We can’t wait to share it all with you.

Have a wonderful week!

Fri.12/13-St. Nicholas Program-2:00 p.m. in the gym

Wed. 12/18-1st grade Nativity Program-in the church

Thur. 12/19-Pajama Day-Wear your jammies all day, and enjoy Christmas themed centers from 1:30-3:00

Fri. 12/20-1/2 day-noon dismissal (no aftercare) Christmas break kickoff

Canned food drive ends Monday

Just a reminder that our canned food drive comes to a close this Monday.  We’d love to have participation from all of our kiddos, so please share what you can and thank you!

This week was all about turkeys.  We kicked off the week reading, A turkey for Thanksgiving, as sweet story about a turkey who is grateful to be included at the dinner and not as the dinner!  We also did a fun little word search to go with it which really helps us practice spelling and using our good “eagle eyes.”  We also read, Thanks for Thanksgiving.  This is a precious little story that lists all kinds of things the author is thankful for.  We did a writing assignment to go along with this, and you’ll see those up on the line next week.  The kids did a very nice job on this, and you’ll love reading about the things for which they are thankful!

In math, we are wrapping up our work with polygons.  We have identified, classified, sorted them into groups, and drawn them ourselves.  It’s been a very hands-on section in our book and the kids are getting some great vocabulary, as well.

Our Social Studies unit is of course all about our Wampanoag board.  It will be up next week for you to enjoy, and you will be able to see all of our great work.  We wrote about our jobs in the tribe, and drew all the little details this week (corn and pumpkins for the farmers, fish for the ocean and river, and lots of animals!) It’s been really fun to work on this as a mixed group of first graders and the kids have done a great job.

Upcoming events: 11/25-FINAL DAY for the Canned Food Drive for St. Michael’s Pantry and Community Food Bank;

Wed-Fri. 11/27-11/29-No School-Thanksgiving Break;

Friday, 12/6-Special St. Nicholas surprise!

Fri.12/13-St. Nicholas Program-2:00 p.m. in the gym

Wed. 12/18-1st grade Nativity Program-in the church

Fri. 12/20-1/2 day-noon dismissal (no aftercare) Christmas break kickoff

All about the pilgrims

This week it was all about the pilgrims (and our turkeys, too!) We kicked off the week by sharing our amazing turkeys in disguise. They are just amazing and if you haven’t had a chance, please stop in to take a peek at all of them.  They’re just so fun! Next, we read some non-fiction stories about the pilgrims, their difficult voyage, and why they chose to leave England. Then we got a chance to re-tell what we learned in our writing.  We also read a story called, Thank you, Sarah.  It’s a wonderful true story about Sarah Hale, who had a superpower–her pen.  She campaigned for Thanksgiving to become a national holiday and after more than 30 years President Abraham Lincoln said, “yes!”  We are grateful for her determination and wrote a note of thanks to tell her so.

In math, we are busy studying shapes–sorting them, noticing characteristics and putting them into groups.  We’ve also been practicing our 2-digit addition and working on place value. We are also continuing our steady work in Mountain math where we review all of the math concepts of first grade.

In Social Studies, we are busy working on our Wampanoag board.  We are collecting items that can be turned into the landscape, and we are so excited to share the final product with you during the week of Thanksgiving.

Please remember that we are still collecting canned food for the St. Michael’s pantry, and/or dollars for the Southern Arizona Community Food Bank. We would love to have each of our students participate if at all possible.  Thanks so much for your consideration.

Next week: we’ll be talking about those find feathered friends that were very nearly our national bird! We are excited to learn about and read some fun books about TURKEYS! Don’t forget that we have a half day on Wednesday for a staff in-service (there is aftercare, but don’t forget to bring lunch!) Have a wonderful week–enjoy the cool weather.

Upcoming events: 11/4-11/25-Canned Food Drive for St. Michael’s Pantry and Community Food Bank;

11/20-1/2 day-noon dismissal (Teacher In-service);

Wed-Fri. 11/27-11/29-No School-Thanksgiving Break;

Fri.12/13-St. Nicholas Program-2:00 p.m. in the gym

Wed. 12/18-1st grade Nativity Program-in the church

Fri. 12/20-1/2 day-noon dismissal (no aftercare) Christmas break kickoff

 

Happy Veteran’s Day!

It was another great day in first grade as we started studying the Wampanoag Native Americans and enjoyed Field Day!

We kicked off the week by reading a story about Squanto, an important Native American who helped the Pilgrims the first year they arrived.  We did a short writing piece to followup and these are hanging in our classroom. 🙂 Next we read a non-fiction story about the first meetings of the Pilgrims and Native American’s told from two young boys’ perspective.  This helped us get ready for our work on our own members of our Wampanoag tribe.  We read about the animals and landscape in Massachusetts all those years ago, and even about the different summer and winter homes.  This led to us making our canoes, our Wetu’s and our Native American paper people which will all be part of our BIG project set out in time for Thanksgiving.

In math, we are finishing up the chapter on composing 2-d and 3-d shapes and will be heading on to describing and sorting different shapes.  We can hardly wait–it’s been tons of fun working with the pattern blocks to reinforce more/fewer and see how many “right” answers we can find.

Of course, the big highlight was Field Day!  A HUGE shoutout and thank you to Coach Greene for organizing such a fun event.  We loved every minute of the cool weather and the great sportsmanship!

Getting ready for the water balloon toss! 🙂

We hope you are all busy putting the finishing touches on your Turkey in Disguise as those are due tomorrow! We love to see the transformations and hope you had as much fun making them as we will seeing and hearing about them.

Please don’t forget about the food drive–we are hoping to really support both the STM Pantry and the Food Bank! Have a wonderful (short!) week.

Upcoming events: 11/4-11/25-Canned Food Drive for St. Michael’s Pantry and Community Food Bank;

Tues. 11/12-Turkeys are due!

11/20-1/2 day-noon dismissal (Teacher In-service);

Wed-Fri. 11/27-11/29-No School-Thanksgiving Break;

Happy Halloween!

What a week in first grade! It was all treats, and no tricks for us with the highlight of an awesome Halloween party in the park, followed by our parade!

We kicked off our week by reading, Crankenstein, a cute story about things that can make regular kids cranky!!  Then we did a beginning/middle/end piece along with some cute art and these are on display up in our rooms.  Next we read, Room on the Broom. We hope you got to see our darling witches on the watercolor backgrounds up on the line earlier in the week.   We also took some time to talk about writing descriptive clues–this time about ourselves–and added those to a “Trick or Treat” project with a picture of each kiddo covered by a “ghost.”  The kids did a great job and even got to hear the clues and guess who it was describing in our classes. 🙂

In Math, we are working on filling shapes with “more” and “fewer.”  We are also recognizing names of 2-D and 3-D shapes, and even making observations about pictures of shapes that look like they have only a few triangles or squares, but actually have many “hidden” in the picture.  This is helping us open our way of thinking and look more critically.  As you saw, we continue to practice our addition and subtraction facts, and additional concepts like fact families, and greater than/less than.

We finished the week by making some beautiful paper skulls and reading stories about skeletons and Dia de los Muertos.  We got a chance to peek in at the alter in the chapel, and our 8th grade buddies came by to show us their face paint and let us see what we get to look forward to in 8th grade.

Our highlight, of course, was the party and parade. Here are just a few pictures to show you all the games/fun we had, and to send out a HUGE thank you to Virginia (Maria’s mom) and her giant crew of helpers that made our day so WONDERFUL!  Thank you everyone–we thought this Halloween was just perfect! 🙂

Next week, we’ll start learning about the Wampanoag’s–the Native Americans who helped the Pilgrims and joined them for the first Thanksgiving.  Stay tuned for a BIG project in class, and a FUN project to work on at home!  We can hardly wait…

Upcoming events: 11/4-11/25-Canned Food Drive for St. Michael’s Pantry and Community Food Bank;

Fri. 11/8-Field Day and Half Day-Noon Dismissal, (no hot lunch)

Mon. 11/11-No School, Grading Day; Wed.

11/20-1/2 day-noon dismissal (Teacher In-service);

Wed-Fri. 11/27-11/29-No School-Thanksgiving Break;

 

Hurray for Pumpkin Day!

We had a really great week in first grade with lots of pumpkin activities and books and fun!

We kicked off the week by reading, Spookley, about a little pumpkin who was “different” but found out that he was special, too. We also did a little work with story elements.  We also read, The Runaway Pumpkin, and did some fun word work with blends, and ABC order. We also loved hearing one of Mrs. Moseley’s favorites, a timeless story about a tiny little witch who makes a special home that becomes a sweet jack-o-lantern.

In Math, we have been working with 2-d and 3-d shapes. We are still building, filling, and creating shapes in as many different ways as we can (for example: using less pieces, or more pieces.)  We are also practicing addition (including double digit addition) and subtraction facts, related facts, and more.

The highlight of our week, of course, was Pumpkin Day! Big thanks to all of our amazing helpers. You helped our kiddos practice with the life cycle of a pumpkin; taste pumpkin pie; observe and analyze our own pumpkins; make glyphs; find a hidden pumpkin;  and even make our own little “rock” pumpkins! We truly could not have done it without you! :0)

Have a wonderful week–Happy Halloween!

Upcoming events: 10/31 Halloween Party in the park + Halloween Parade @ 2:45; 11/4-11/18-Canned Food Drive for St. Michael’s Pantry and Community Food Bank; Fri. 11/8-Field Day and Half Day-Noon Dismissal, (no hot lunch.) Mon. 11/11-No School, Grading Day; Wed. 11/20-1/2 day-noon dismissal (Teacher In-service); Wed-Fri. 11/27-11/29-No School-Thanksgiving Break;

What a wonderful week!

We had a wonderful week in first grade.  We got to learn about bats, bless our animals, and share a wonderful morning with our Grandparents/Grandfriends.

We kicked off the week with the book, Stellaluna. It’s about a baby bat who gets separated from her mom and tries to live as a bird.  We got to practice our “blend” skills by producing “st” words after that, and practice putting words into ABC order as well.  We also read, Nightsong.  It’s a great book about a young bat who learns to use his echolocation.  We sat outside and listened for two minutes to see how many things we could hear with our eyes closed and we really named a bunch! We also read some nonfiction books and wrote our bat facts.  Did you know that there are over 1,000 types of bats in the world?  We are so lucky to have a good population of bats here in Tucson–keep those insects in check! 🙂

In Mass last week, Mother Claire blessed our stuffed animals in celebration of St. Francis who recognized the importance of all living things as brothers and sisters under God.  Here is a picture of our celebration:

In Math, we are working with 2-D and 3-D shapes. We are naming them, noticing their attributes, counting sides and angles, filling spaces with them, and finding them in our everyday life.  It’s some new vocabulary (ie: rhombus,) and lots of learning.  We are also working on Mountain Math as we discussed at Back to School Night.  This keeps our addition/subtraction, money and time skills fresh as we conquer the text.

Finally, we had an amazing morning on Friday with all of our special guests. It was fun to “many hands” working on our little project and to play some Grandparent’s Day Bingo! Many thanks go out to all who could attend and for those who could not, you were missed.


Next week, we will be studying all things, PUMPKIN! This includes our Pumpkin Day on Thursday which features pumpkin themed centers, and pie tasting! 🙂 Have a wonderful week!

Important Dates:  Fri. 10/18-Grandparents Day; Thurs. 10/24 Pumpkin Day; Thurs. 10/31 Halloween Party in the park + Halloween Parade @ 2:45; 11/4-11/18-Canned Food Drive for St. Michael’s Pantry and Community Food Bank; Mon. 11/11-No School, Grading Day; Wed. 11/20-1/2 day-noon dismissal; Wed-Fri. 11/27-11/29-No School-Thanksgiving Break

 

Eek! There are spiders in first grade! (but, not really!)

We had a great week in first grade just before the break.  We spent lots of time reading about, writing about, and talking about spiders!! We kicked off the week with some non-fiction reading to help us understand these 8-legged friends a little more.  We took some time to label some spiders after we read to demonstrate our learning.  We also read a fun story about someone who was afraid of spiders before learning how special and helpful they are.  This launched us into our first creative writing project (which you may have seen on our front line) about a spider who was caught by a first grader.  We are really proud of the creativity and good work that went into these. 🙂

In math, we finished up on unit of strategies for subtraction.  Next up, we’ll be  comparing and combining shapes.  We are looking forward to working with pattern blocks and creating 2-d and 3-d shapes.   You can help us by noticing shapes with your kiddos at home, and on your way to school–what are the names of the shapes? Are they 2-d or 3-d? How do you know?

Next week, we are excited to welcome our Grandparents/Special Friends.  We hope that each of our guests will enjoy spending the morning on campus and in our classrooms. We’ll be spending the week talking about those beautiful flying mammals, BATS! We can hardly wait.

Important Dates:  Fri. 10/18-Grandparents Day; Thurs. 10/24 Pumpkin Day; Thurs. 10/31 Halloween Party in the park, Mon. 11/11-No School, Grading Day.

 

Johnny Appleseed


This week we extended our apple study by celebrating Johnny Appleseed and a few other American Folk Heroes. We learned about Paul Bunyan and Pecos Bill by reading stories and watching short videos about them. We talked about how to understand exaggeration in a tall tale and enjoyed giving examples of tall tales of our own- (it must have rained a million inches Tuesday) On Wednesday, we had “Apple Day”, we spent the afternoon rotating through centers in both classrooms completing apple themed activities at each center. Thursday was Johnny Appleseed’s birthday so we celebrated by writing facts about Johnny and then at the end of the day, we had a special treat when Adam’s mom brought us homemade apple cake-yum! You probably saw us come home with cute Johnny Appleseed pot hats too!

October begins our study of all things Halloween, spiders, bats, and pumpkins. We will begin next week with spiders.

Math has us learning subtraction strategies this week and next. We have also been regularly incorporating Mountain Math a few times a week and the kids have really taken to it.

We finished up last week with a special performance of Pinocchio. Live Theatre Workshop came to St. Michael’s and shared their wonderfully original performance of Pinocchio complete with singing, amazing masks and a question and answer time at the end. Thanks to Ms. Allen for inviting them to school.

Wednesday, you will find a progress report in your child’s Eagle Express folder. Progress reports are meant to give you a glimpse of where your child is at this point in the school year. If you have any questions about progress reports, please don’t hesitate to ask. 🙂

Important Dates: Mon-Fri. 10/7-11-No School-Fall Break; Fri. 10/18-Grandparents Day; Thurs. 10/24 Pumpkin Day; Thurs. 10/31 Halloween Party in the park,

All about apples!

This week, it was all about apples! We read some great non-fiction books about apples, made our own apple book, wrote facts about apples (to go with our stained glass beauties on the line out front!) and had some fun with an old-fashioned hidden pictures page with an apple orchard.  But, we’re not through yet! Next week is Johnny Appleseed’s birthday so we’ll be adding more fun.

In Math, we wrapped up our work on foundational addition skills and are headed into subtraction.  We’ll be using a lot of the same practices only subtracting this time (ie: one more/one less, counting back on a number line, and always demonstrating our thinking and our strategies with word problems.

It was great to see all those who could stop by on Back to School night.  Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule(s) to be there.  We think the format was the “just right” mix of time in our rooms, time to ask questions, and time to visit all of our enrichment teachers.

Next week: We will kick off the week talking about Folk Tales including Pecos Bill and Paul Bunyan.  This leads into our study of Johnny Appleseed and a fun “apple afternoon” on Thursday to celebrate.  This is a fun mini-unit for us, so if you have folk tales that your kiddos love and would like us to read, send them in!  We’ll be working our subtraction skills in Math.  And, our Social Studies unit is of course, American Folk Heroes.

Hope your weekend was happy, and you’re looking for the cooler (ahem, sub-100) temperatures and rain headed our way this week! 🙂

Important Dates: Mon-Fri. 10/7-11-No School-Fall Break; Fri. 10/18-Grandparents Day; Thurs. 10/24 Pumpkin Day; Thurs. 10/31 Halloween Party in the park,