Thursday, September 30, 2010

October 2010 Room 55 News

It was great to meet everyone at the Open House/BBQ last month. The children did a great job showing you around the classroom and practicing introductions. This meeting time was somewhat brief, so if you would like to meet with me to discuss your child’s adjustment to school and/or progress to date, please contact me. The children continue to settle in and are starting to do a better job with our classroom routines. We have also started to build our classroom community through TRIBES. Our school wide character trait focus this month will be “Cooperation”.

Three students in our class were recognized at our September Celebration Assembly for their accomplishments this past month at Forestview. Way to go!
Stefan Achievement Award
Sydney Effort Award
Griffin Character Trait Award - Optimism

Home Connections in Grade One
A list of five sight words will continue to be sent home on Mondays for your child to practice and learn. Thank you for all your support this past month in working with your child on learning to read and write these words. Our goal is to be able to recognize these words with automaticity. These words are expected to be spelled correctly in all of your child’s written work.

Take Home Reading Program
It is imperative that your child practice reading every night. Your support of this program has a significant effect on your child’s achievement. The “star reading strategies” we are focusing on are:
 Use the pictures

 Activate your schema / Think of what you know

 Sound it out

 Retell the story / Summarize

 Make a connection

As a parent, you can encourage your child to make various connections around reading: text to self, text to text, and text to world. This will help your child become aware of the background knowledge that s/he already has and learn how to build his/her background knowledge.

Text to Self: With text-to-self connections, what you read reminds you of something from your own life. Often text-to-self connections carry a strong emotional charge. Making an emotional connection helps us remember what we read.

Text to Text: With text-to-text connections, what you read reminds you of something else you have read or seen on television or at the movies.

Text to World: When text-to-world connections are made, what you read reminds you of something in the broader world.

Children learn by relating their understanding of something new to what they already know. They need to process what they are reading, to talk about it, write about it, to ponder it. A child is much more apt to remember stories, books, and incidents that are meaningful because they connect to other things in his/her life. (Zimmermann and Hutchins, 43-70)

Your child may have mentioned his/her participation in D.P.A. This refers to our “Daily Physical Activity”. In accordance with the Policy/Program Memorandum No. 138, “Daily Physical Activity in Elementary Schools, Grades 1-8,” October 6, 2005, I have scheduled 20 minutes of sustained moderate physical activity each school day. In order to help me in implementing this program, please ensure that your child has appropriate shoes for participating in D.P.A. each day as well as the days noted on the calendar when Miss Darling takes the children to the gymnasium for Physical Education.

Special Events
We will be focusing on the Language expectations, “Demonstrating and Extending Understanding” throughout the month of October. To compliment our literacy and science units, we will be visiting The Great Pumpkin Patch in Fenwick on October 25th. At Bry-Anne Farms, we will see a dramatic presentation which will highlight the life cycle of the pumpkin plant. As part of our culminating tasks, the students will be RETELLING the important facts in sequence.
On October 29, the children are invited to wear their costumes to school in the afternoon. We can bring our costumes in our backpacks to change into after the 2nd nutrition break. Although we will reserve the eating of treats for October 31st, we will have some fun “Pumpkin Math” activities to do for this occasion.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Welcome to Room 55!

What an amazing first week we had together in Room 55! The children are gradually settling in and getting accustomed to a full day of learning. We are currently reviewing letters and sounds to help us when reading and writing. We have just started to write our "memoirs".
In mathematics, we are working on Number Sense and Numeration while counting our days together.

We will also bring our STORY BIT BAG home this weekend for the first time. We will retell the familiar story, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom. Be sure to read the enclosed information in your child's bag. The bag and its contents should be returned once your child has practiced RETELLING the story several times.

I am looking forward to meeting families on Tuesday!