Friday, September 10, 2010

First Grade FUN!!!

Our First Graders have welcomed the new school year with smiling faces, oodles of energy, and an eagerness to learn new things. What a wonderful beginning to first grade we have had! The children are settling in, getting to know one another, and making new friends with many life-long memories. Together, we are establishing routines that will help us become the BEST Mercury Mine Prospector we can be and we are learning to respect one another's differences by using our good manners and showing kindness to others.

The first grade teachers have been assessing (fast and furiously - ha!) reading and writing skills so that we can better serve your child's academic needs. Our first graders have been practicing staying on task and learning to whisper as they work in their literacy work stations. When individual testing is completed we will be able to have productive, flexible guided reading groups on each child’s instructional level. Remember, reading is the essential key to having a successful school life and it is particularly important to every child to build self confidence at an early age.

We have been directing our academic focus on the following: complete sentences, end marks, capital letters in the appropriate place, ending each statement with a punctuation mark, and leaving a space between words, short vowel sounds with an emphasis on short a, e, and i, beginning and ending sounds of words, hearing, reading, and writing rhyming words, story elements such as the main character, setting, the problem, the solution, and the most important events, reciting new songs and poems, patterns, ordinal numbers, open and closed shapes, measurement, adding and subtracting to 18, graphing, and ordinal directions. WHEW! Now can you see why your little first grader comes home so wiped out!!

Can you think of a little red house with no doors, no windows, a chimney on top and a star inside? You guessed it, an apple. We will have fun learning about Apples this month. We will be using apples as stamps to make wonderful patterns, learn about Johnny Appleseed, paint Apple Trees, and learn about apple trees through the seasons.