With all of that going on, the students have still been working very hard. Here's what we've been working on in the classroom:
Reading : Now the students are pros during reading workshop - they could (almost) run it themselves! In the last couple of weeks, we focused on how to work with a reading partner and how to get our minds ready for a book. Just like athletes warm up their muscles, readers need to 'warm up' their minds to get the most out of a text. When you read with your child, have discussions about information you already know about the book topic, characters, author, and/or illustrator before you even crack open the book. If there's a blurb on the back, read it and make predictions about what you think will happen in the story.
Writing : The last couple of weeks have been huge weeks in the growth and development of 1-Bu students as writers. Their stories have so much more detail and depth to them than they did just a few weeks ago. Last week, the students worked on getting one of their pieces ready for publishing. At the end of every writing unit, the students will select a piece to publish. This is the piece that they will spend time 'fancying up' (editing, revising, coloring, and creating a cover).
Phonics : Last week, we focused on our first vowel sound, the short a. We spent a lot of time breaking up words into their sounds and learning about word families (for example, coming up with lists of words that end in -at, -an, etc).
Word study homework is starting this week. A word study homework explanation packet will be in your child's folder on Monday. Please look through it carefully so that you are aware of my expectations with your child's weekly word study homework assignments. For the first week, I'll check the homework each day to make sure that the students are completing it correctly. But, after that, it will all be given out on Monday and due on Friday.
Math : We've finished our first math unit! Since my last update, we've learned about the number grid (and how to use it), number stories. and complements of ten.
If you haven't done so already, please take a look at the math section of your child's binder. There are directions in there that explain how to play a few of the math games that we've learned so far this school year. It's great practice to play these games at home.
Science : We finished up our butterfly unit by releasing our butterflies a couple of weeks ago. We were lucky, as we got to witness the butterflies emerging from their chrysalises over the course of a school day. In fact, one of our butterflies got stuck coming out of its chrysalis.
Social Studies : We started our first social studies unit, which is all about becoming familiar with communities, neighborhoods, and map skills.
Here are a few pictures of 1-Bu in action week: