It has been sooo icy and cold! For safety, we’ve been keeping the students indoors at recess and lunch most days … those Toys R Us toys have been a lifesaver! We’ve also been taking them out for short walks and some fresh air AND been playing Just Dance Kids on the Smart Board - we've been keeping them active ;)
Twitter @HPASKellys1and2 **EDIT** Now, @KellysEdu
We’re Tweeting! This is something new that we’d like to try out. It all started as a way for students AND parents to get more involved in the BAB homework; the discussions and the comments about the books you read are JUST AS IMPORTANT as the reading itself. If your son or daughter has an interesting comment, then please e-mail it to Alida (one of our awesome class reps!) at firstname.lastname@example.org and she will tweet it from our account on your child’s behalf! We’ll also be tweeting from class from time to time with photos and updates. Please be sure to check us out!
We had a long discussion about the learning skill “self-regulation” – and I tell ya’, it’s a hard one for kids this age to understand. The idea of looking critically at oneself and not only identifying an area of need, but also identifying learning opportunities and setting achievable goals – that takes a lot of discussion and a lot of patience ;) BUT – all the students have chosen at least two areas of need within our school environment that they believe they could improve; writing, reading, organization, independent work, solving social problems, gym, art … the choices go on and on! The next step is to come up with a concrete plan, steps they can follow to help them reach their goal. Ask your son or daughter about their plans!
One of our goals as a class this term is to ‘read with fluency’. To read with sufficient volume and pace aloud, as though you were simply speaking and not reading. A trick with the kids we use is to NOT read like a robot ;) Ask them about fluency.
We have wrapped up our Data Management Unit (*see last week’s post re: culminating task) and have moved on to Geometry – 2D shapes! We’ve had some fun playing games on the smartboard together and the grade 1s did an art/writing/math activity (I see one “shape word”, two “shape word” … up to five), while the grade 2s worked with me on a textbook package (I Spy Shapes in the Room; These Shapes are alike/dislike because; I drew a shape picture and used X, Y, and Z shapes).
Check out some of the sites we used:
A whole LOT of shape games at internet4classrooms
Flips, Slides and Turns for grade 2s (but the grade 1s played too!)
In addition to all the Smart Board Games we’ve been using, we’ve integrated our math with Language and have added 3 new poems to our Poems and Songs folders: A Shel Silverstein shape poem (ask about the triangle, the square and the circle!), and two songs “I’ll be a Circle” and “Go Left, Go Right”. As we read and listen to these texts, students underline the math vocabulary and practice their sight words at the same time!
We’ll still be talking about Rules and Responsibilities (Social Studies) throughout the year, but we’re now starting up our Science Unit – Energy! We have been having a blast watching some short video clips – The Race to Renewable Energy Bill Nye’s Energy and Electricity clips too energy Energy Electricity
We had a long discussion about the power outage last month and what it would be like if we had no electrical energy? One of our awesome parent volunteers even helped create an Energy Bingo game that students have been playing at Word Work Daily 5 most mornings (thanks Sarah!). Ask your son or daughter about some of the ‘energy’ vocabulary words they’re been learning!!
I hope you all had a lovely winter break and are well rested J
We were very laid back on Monday and just eased back into our program. I started off in the morning by asking students: Who stayed up really late past their bedtime over the break? Who would STILL be in bed this morning if you didn’t have to be here at school now? and Who even took some cozy afternoon naps on their couches while they cuddled up in warm blankets and watched their favourites movies??? (*I had my hand raised for each and every question, just like most of the kids!) We reviewed our morning arrival routines and took until about 9:30 to get everything covered: 1) put on indoor shoes 2) check for Home Notes 3)Check for Borrow a Book and CHANGE BAB 4) do morning jobs (like pencil sharpening, table top checking, recycling etc). Rather than start in with Daily 5 right away, we had a nice long community meeting, where we chilled on the carpet and talked in small groups all about our awesome holidays!! After recess, we went to our Writing Journals and wrote some entries about our conversations and if we had finished our work by the afternoon, then students had free centre time.
We did it! We finished the text for our Snowman book and it’s displayed for all to see in the main hallway! The kids were so proud J Thanks to Cathy for coming in to display it for us!!
This month’s Character Education Trait is Teamwork, so students listened to the read aloud “Franklin Plays the Game”. As they listened to the book, we talked about evidence of team work in the illustrations and in the text. As you watch the YouTube video, talk about evidence or proof, give examples of teamwork from the images and the text! At the start of a new year it’s important to self-reflect, feel proud of our accomplishments and set goals. We read I Like Myself! talked about our strengths and needs – I am good at and I need to practice - and then we wrote two separate entries on puzzle piece cuts outs! The puzzle pieces symbolize the different parts of us! Some parts are strengths, some parts are needs, but when we put them together … they make us who we are!
We eased back into math with an easy base 10 block activity. Grade 1 students counted base tens with cubes and rods (ones and tens) while the Grade 2s counted with cubes, rods AND flats (hundreds). Play these fun base ten games at home! They are SO easy to navigate and just like the activities we do in school.
Later in the week we reviewed all that we’d learned about data management and did our culminating task. The success criteria were as follows:
- ask a relevant question (WHY do you want to know this information, there has to be a good reason?)
- offer possible choices for your participants
- create a neat tally chart with a ruler and track answers with tally marks
- try to ask everyone in the class (*come up with a strategy for keeping track of who you already asked!!!)
- transfer your data onto a bar graph, complete with a title, labels and correct data (the bars match the tally marks)
- analyze your data and tell us what you found out!
We’re still working hard on this and students will wrap it up early next week.
Field Trip to Downsview Park Eco Centre
Students brought home field trip forms today and they need to be returned ASAP! At the end of the month, on Thursday January 30th , we will be going to Downsview Park Eco Centre to take part in 2 programs.Waste Not, Want Not: Learn how to use resources more effectively while reducing the amount of waste generated and Outdoor Cooperative Games: Challenge your class with a series of fun outdoor activities that encourage teamwork, creative thinking and problem solving. The best part is that parent volunteers are FREE OF CHARGE! We can accept as many parent volunteers as we’d like! So, please book the time off and come with us for the day J Since this is right in town and only a 25 minute drive away, we’ll be doing this as a Parent Driver Trip. Please be sure to connect with Barjinder over the next few weeks and arrange your driving child’s transportation for the day!
Behaviour in the Swim Change Room
Please talk with your son or daughter about appropriate behaviour in the change rooms at swim. Today, we had to review the expectations because some students were acting quite silly. Thanks for your support J
Borrow a Book Frequently Asked Questions
So many students read over the winter holidays!! That’s AWESOME! Thanks so much for your support of our homework program J Here are a few FAQs that came up as I reviewed students’ work.
Can we read library books from the public library?
ANY book counts! If you child goes to Kumon or Oxford and reads at that program, log the hours! Read library books, books from home and even online books! (*just make a note of what type of book it is)
Chapter books are so long, can we write a single record to cover several chapters that have been read in the same evening and still get credit for all chapters?
Yes, you can ABSOLUTELY fill in one record for multiple chapters read in a night. There's no need to comment on each chapter, individually just the 'chunk' that you read is more than adequate. Please just keep note of the # of chapters read. (e.g., ch. 3 – 6)
Can we just log one comment for a whole chapter book, once it’s done?
I’d rather you keep track of how much you read in a night (track the chapters, e.g., ch 3 – 6) and make a comment every time you read.
Students don’t have to do the writing in the journal, but it does have to be their ideas. With that said though, it can be good practice for them to write their comments. I leave it up to your judgement; if it’s a struggle to get them to write – then don’t worry about it!
Some Writing Prompts:
This reminds me of another book because …
The character is …
It makes me think about a time when I …
I am like the character because …
I am NOT like the character …
I learned that …
I wonder why/how/if …
In our Room 108 Classroom Community, we foster an engaging, respectful and caring environment. I aim to balance a consistent program with flexible responsiveness to students' individual needs.