First Grade April 2019 Update

Dear Families,

It was so wonderful to meet with you all during Parent Teacher Conferences.  We wanted to update you on some of the exciting things that we are studying in First Grade.

In Writing Workshop, we are continuing our study of Realistic Fiction.  The students have been creating some very interesting characters for their stories.  We have learned about a story arc.  In each story the students first create their character and then decide where the story will take place.  After that, they work on the action in the story, what is the trouble or problem.  We then have been working hard trying to include two failed attempts to solve the problem before ending with the solution.  Students have been writing many stories.  Recently we have begun to focus on developing as series writers.  They have been writing many adventures that include the same characters and the same setting.  They are working to develop their characters throughout a series of books.  In Book One, the students are introducing their reader to who the character is, where the character lives, what the character likes and dislikes, how the character feels, and who their friends are.  We want our readers to feel like they really know our characters.  We continue to work on bringing our stories to life.

In Reading Workshop, we continue to work on tracking our thinking in our books with post its.  We have been learning about identifying the lesson the characters have learned & how those lessons apply to our lives.  We have also begun grouping books by lessons/themes and making recommendations to our friends and reading buddies on books they might love and why.

In Math, we continue the challenging work of understanding place value of numbers into the hundreds and even thousands. We are working to create models that help us identify exactly what multi-step word problems are asking us to do & demonstrating accuracy in our efforts to solve those problems.

Our Architecture Study has gotten off to a great start!  Tomorrow we will complete our work with Heidi from the Friends of the Upper Eastside Historic District.  We have learned how buildings speak to us.  We are developing a very extensive architectural vocabulary.  Our neighborhood walk was very exciting and educational.  It is amazing how many interesting architectural details we can find on the buildings surrounding our school.  We will begin our work after the break with an educator from the Center for Architecture.  The program is Learning by Design.  This will build on what we have already learned.  We will learn about building/drawing to scale, what a blueprint is, sustainable building, and urban planning… just to name a few areas of focus.  Each of the children will have the opportunity to design and build their own building for our neighborhood.

Our Pajama and Bedtime Story Drive is well underway!  Donations can be made anytime this week.  The Drive has been extended to Friday, April 5th   Thank you to all who have made donations already!

Thank you all for your continued support.  As always, please feel free to reach out with any questions, comments and/or delights.

All the best,

Kristin and Sarah