Friday, January 31, 2014

Chinese New Year

Ni Hao!  Today marks the beginning of Chinese New Year or Lunar New Year which is also known as Spring Festival.  1st graders and Kindergarten buddies learned some of the traditions behind this festive celebration.
Chinese New Year lasts 15 days and is typically celebrated with red paper cutouts with the words, happiness, wealth and longevity. Today might be a good day to spend some time cleaning. According to superstition you must clean your house thoroughly to sweep away misfortune and make way for good luck and fortune in the coming year. But don't sweep on New Year's Day or you'll sweep away the New Year fortune. Students loved learning their Chinese zodiac symbol. Our 1st grade class consists of dogs and pigs.

After learning the traditions and customs behind Chinese New Year, buddies worked together to create Chinese lanterns.  Students drew and wrote their own Chinese characters. 
Zai Jian!

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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Once Upon a Time

After much technical difficulty and LOTS of fairy dust, we are finally ready to share our published fairy tale book!  We used the app Book Creator to turn our individual tales into a virtual class book. 1st graders are very excited to share their stories. You can easily read our book on an iPad or iPhone through the Dropbox link (no sign in needed).

Click on the link: Once upon a Time
Then click on Download.
Open in iBooks.
Now you're ready to read Once Upon a Time again, again and again. Happy reading!
Once upon a Time

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Pretty Please

Convince Me! Students have been working on writing persuasive writing pieces. First, 1st graders brainstormed different items they wanted at home or at school. Then students wrote adorable persuasive letters to try and change your mind. To help us write persuasive pieces we have been using "OREO". We start by writing our Opinion, then Reason, next Explanation, and finally restate our Opinion. If we're feeling like extra great writers that day, we will double stuff our Oreo! Students worked in groups to write a persuasive piece convincing me to get something for our classroom.
Kaitlyn, Sophia and Hailey tried to convince me for a class bunny. They believed it would cheer us up when we were sad and provide a new exciting class job.  The three of them even told me they would ask Mrs. Carreiro for permission and have a bake sale to raise money.  They then added in a few "pretty pleases" and hearts along the way. They definitely know good manners is the best way to try and convince me!
Luke, John, Matty, and Jake hoped for their very own cool computers for our classroom. They believe it will be fun and educational to no longer have to share computers in room 116. The boys promised to only do IXL, Raz-kids, or whatever the teacher told them. Everyone in our classroom agreed on this one believing we should all have our own computers or iPads in class. Fingers crossed someday this dream comes true (we might need to cross our toes too)!
Carter, Quinn, Ashwin and Brannon gave arguments for why we should get robots to do our work in school. They tried to persuade me that by having robots they would be able to sit and relax all day. This group offered to make the robots out of old tv parts and sell sandwiches to raise money.  I wonder if they can create a robot monkey too?
Teagan, Katherine and Natalia would like a slumber party for room 116. This group believed after a slumber party our classroom would be well rested and ready to focus on school work. They stated they would have a fundraiser to bring in ice cream (sherbet and chocolate my favorites) plus sprinkles and popcorn.  They also stated that some kids in our class have never had a slumber party, so what better place than 1st grade.
Langdon, Marco and Ella tried to persuade the class for a class pet day. This group believed it would be fun to learn about each other's beautiful pets. They promised to hang their backpacks up and not bully, in order to have a class pet day. Unfortunately, no pets are allowed at school so I guess our stuffed friends will have to do.

Since all the 1st graders did an excellent job with their writing, we celebrated with a brownie point and some Klipfel Kash. Unfortunately, with school rules and school money my fairy dust wasn't able to grant any other wishes but it's always fun to dream.
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Monday, January 27, 2014


Math has been quite a busy time for us in 1st grade. Length and measurement have been our focus for the past few weeks. Students used non standard units to measure different objects around the classroom. We have been practicing using our mathematical language to compare objects. Have your child show you how they can make their body large, larger and largest or short, shorter and shortest.
Is the Smartboard taller or shorter than the yard stick?
Prior to our learning about length, 1st graders learned all about ordinal numbers. We used what we knew about standing in line or grades in school to practice with the order words (first, second, third, fourth etc.). Students also practiced with positional words such as between, behind, in front of or underneath.

1st graders are now moving into number sentences and word problems to 20, so please continue to work on automatically knowing addition and subtraction facts to ten!

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Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Happy 2014!

Hopes and Dreams for 2014

To start the new year off right we brainstormed New Year's resolutions.  We discussed how these are goals or promises we make to ourselves for the new year.  1st graders used an organizer to think of personal goals, school goals and goals for friends and family.  Then they picked one resolution and typed it using the iPads onto our Wallwisher.

We would love for you to add your 2014 resolution to our wall.  Just double click anywhere on the wall.  Then add your name and type your resolution (I need to approve it before it will show up on our wall).  Happy New Year!
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