Magic Book, Math, and Leprechaun Traps!

This morning we learned all about the letter O. We drew a detailed picture in our magic book. The learners had fun creating a list of words that begin with O.  

During math we have been learning about measurement. Our lesson for today was learning how to measure with different units. 

The Leprechaun Traps are ready! The first graders set-up the traps that all of the learners created with Katie on Tuesday. Hopefully we will catch a leprechaun this year!!! 

Meet Oreo Our new class pet!

Room 10 has a new class pet – a guinea pig named Oreo. The learners were beyond excited to meet her this morning. A big thank you to Mandy for doing all of the research to find us such a lovely guinea pig. She is very calm and loving. I really appreciate all the time and care that Mandy spent on this project. We went through quite a process to name her today and I believe by the end of our class meeting everyone felt good about her new name. Enjoy the photos! 

For cooking time today the learner had a wonderful five senses cooking/science lesson about their sense of taste. Fun was had by all! Thank you Deena and Jenee!

For writers workshop we had a fun lesson about had to add suggestions, warnings, or tips to our how-to books. 

Curriculum Update – March

Writers Workshop Unit of Study for the month of March:
In Writer’s Workshop we are continuing with our unit of study titled – How To Books: Writing to Teach Others
We will spend the rest of March learning how to write “How To Books.” Here are a few upcoming lessons:

– Writers emulate features of informational writing using a mentor text

– Writing for readers: using the word “you” – helping children apply and transfer strategies for spelling trickier words

– In their How-To books writers picture each step and then choose their exact right words – supporting students who need extra help choosing their exact right words

– Elaboration in How-To books: Writers guide readers with warnings, suggestions, and tips – coaching and teaching students to use many revisions strategies

– Writers write How-To books about the things they learn throughout the day and from books

– Writing a series or collection of How-To books to teach others even more about a topic

– Writers can write introductions and conclusions to help their readers – teaching the writer not the writing!

-Using everything they know to make their How-To books easy to read

– Publishing party!

Science Unit of Study – Five Senses – January to March

Enduring understandings:
– There are five senses: sight, hearing, smell, taste, touch.
– We use our senses to navigate the world around us.
– Every person’s senses are different.

Essential Questions:
– What are our senses?
– How do your senses inform your understanding of the world?

Learners will know and understand:
– How does each sense work?
– What happens when a sense does not work?
– What does it mean to have a disability?

Learners will be able to:
– Distinguish between senses.
– Demonstrate the use of senses
• Smell
• Sight
• Hearing
• Taste
• Touch
– Identify all five senses.

Readers Workshop Unit of Study: February to May – Readers pursue their interest in books and other text
Readers will study:

• Genre studies non-fiction, fiction, and fairy tales
• Individual author studies
• Character studies
• Learn how to infer within the text

Phonics Lessons from Pinnell and Fountas for March
These lessons are taught each afternoon during our first grade language arts time. The lessons are taught in a systematic order to support the children in reading and writing through-out the school year.
The topics that will be covered during March are: (although this a rough schedule depending on how the lessons go each week, sometimes we may need more/less time for a certain lesson)

– Introducing Consonant Clusters
– Learning about Beginning Consonant Clusters
– Learning About Names and Initials
– Recognizing consonant clusters: s family
– Recognizing consonant clusters: r family
– summarizing easy spelling patterns
– Learning phonograms – ate, – are, – ike,
– Recognizing synonyms
– Noticing different parts of a word

Unit of Study for Math – March
During the month of March we will be learning how to collect and represent data and then we will move onto measuring distances. The lessons will focus on learning how to collect, record, and represent data. They will have the opportunity to develop their own survey questions. For measurement the students will measure lengths using units of various sizes. They will learn and discover that different size units result in different measurements. Students will solve comparison problems, measuring lengths to determine not only which is longer but how much longer.

Our lessons and activities will cover:
– surveys

– representing survey data

– measuring with different units

– measuring jumps

During the month of March we will be learning how to incorporate mindful seeing into our mindfulness practice each day. I plan to help the children learn how to focus their eyes on a single spot, which in turn can help them learn how to clear their mind and be present in the moment.

The information below is from “The Way of Mindful Education” this is the book that I am using as my guide for our daily mindfulness lessons.

The learning objectives for Mindful Seeing are:
– The mindful seeing practice cultivates attentions skills
– This practice especially helps students to become aware of distractions
– Student learn to return attention to a single-pointed awareness again and again


Ron and Taxi visit room 10

This morning Ron and Taxi came for a special visit. The learners loved hearing the fun and exciting stories told by Ron. He is quite the storyteller. Fun was had by all!

Taxi spent the afternoon with the first graders. The learners had fun reading and telling stories to Taxi. She is incredibly calm and loving. She is also a good listener. 

Valentine’s Tea Party

Just a few quick photos from yesterday’s last Post Office day and our Tea Party. (More photos coming later thanks to our roving photographer Amy Chin.)

This celebratory day is one of my favorites of the school year. I love seeing all excitement and joy on the children’s faces as they open the cards and say such sweet thank yous after opening each one.

One final note, some of the learners came home with a white folder containing finished work yesterday. With the rain and the added challenge of bringing home the mailboxes brimming with valentines, I saved the folders for a bunch of learners to take home after break.

Here is a breakdown of what you will find in the folders:


  • Families Unit: various projects including family tree and autobiography
  • Math: 100 day activities, Math Tile recording sheets, subtraction activities, math game recording sheets
  • Language Arts: Slingerland practice pages
  • Writer’s Workshop: All writing from our Small Moments unit, with the exception of the published piece (this will be returned at the end of school in each learner’s writing portfolio

First Grade

  • Language Arts: guided reading handouts, graphic organizers from listening center, phonics worksheets, Slingerland handwriting practice
  • Families Unit: various projects including family tree and autobiography
  • Math: worksheets from our unit Solving Story Problems (Combinations, Solving Subtraction Problems, Counting Larger Amounts) and 100th day activities
  • Writer’s Workshop: All writing from our Small Moments unit, with the exception of the published piece (this will be returned at the end of school in each learner’s writing portfolio)
  • Sight Word Practice Books

Thanks everyone. Wishing you all a happy and healthy February break!