Thursday, October 30, 2008

Literary Teasers

Are you looking for something new to do with books and your child? Well I have found this really great site that makes learning about new books (or remembering the old ones) fun and exciting. You must take a look at Kidderlit. The site posts a new literary teaser each day. You can try to guess what book the quote comes from. If you can't figure it out and you want to know, just click on the Amazon button and it will take you right to the link for that book. They also have an adult literary teaser as well. Check it out on the side of our blog.

If you get an answer correct, post a comment and let us know what book it was.

Extra Expedition 10/30

Today we reviewed things that move back/forth or around. Your child needs to find one thing that moves back/forth and one thing that moves around. Tomorrow is the only day they are allowed to turn that in due to the end of the week. Your child can post the comment on the blog or turn it in on a piece of paper.
Happy Homeworking.

* Don't forget tomorrow is Friday - homework is due.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Extra Expeditions 10/27

Periodically we will tell the kids that they can do a bonus homework assignment. If it is completed, he/she will receive something special the next day. That may be a piece of candy, a sticker, extra job, etc. Some examples have been the sink/float and push/pull. We had a parent request that these fun expeditions be posted on the blog so here is our first official expedition.

* Tonight your child can tell you about what he/she learned in Social Studies. Have him/her choose and describe one of following. Answers can be on a piece of paper or by comment on the blog. All answers must be turned in by Wed. for credit.

- What is the role of the mayor?
- What is the role of the governor?
- What is the role of the president?
- Tell us something we learned about President Thomas Jefferson in class?
- Tell us something we learned about President Abraham Lincoln in class?
- Tell us something we learned about President Franklin Delano Roosevelt in class?

Hope you enjoy our new Expeditions!!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Stone Soup

Today one of our UNF students gave a lesson from the book Stone Soup. How fun!! First she read the book and as she read she had the students add the ingredients. Everyone wanted a turn of course. Then she discussed all the important parts of a recipe and discussed the recipes that the students had sent in as well. She modeled how she could write her own recipe for Stone Soup and make it as fun as she wanted as long as it had all the important elements that a recipe has. The kids brainstormed things to put in their soups as a class. Then it was time for them to write. What funny things they came up with to put in their soups. Here are a couple samples of those great recipes. (click on the image to see it larger)

Monday, October 20, 2008

What's in the box? - Part 2

Ok, well Peter came to me this morning and said he told his mom what was in the box but wasn't sure how to post it. So here it is for those of you who have been waiting.

It was Gooder the turtle. He was banging the side of the box over and over. He is actually a teenager. He was not very happy in the box and wanted to get out. Once the trainer was holding him he continued to keep moving his legs as if he was walking so she decided to put him down and let him roam around while she talked. We all loved Gooder! We hope you have enjoyed the suspense of "What's in the box?".

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Why we loved Mosh~

The best thing about MOSH was...
Richa - I got to pet a corn snake
Jasani - we saw the history section and had fun at lunch
Katie - we pet a corn snake
Mikey - I liked when we went to the science section and shoot the marbles
Abigail - I liked petting Friendship
Cameron - I liked the show and seeing the turtle
Isaiah - when we played the gamed and shoot the balls
Mia - seeing the turtle and the snake
Peter - when I pressed the button the dinosaur roared
Payton - the animal show. I liked the turtle.
John - when we went to see the show. I liked petting the snake.
Hannah - I liked when we went to the games and saw the snake
Brandon L. - I liked playing the games
Zachary - I liked the Indian stuff. Remember when we did our Indian thing last year?
Lauren - I liked the bones we saw.
Dylan - when we saw the shark bones
Bridget - when I touched the snake
CJ - when I saw the snake
Alexis - When I touched the snake and I liked seeing the owl
Lisa - when we touched the snake and we watched a movie in the history section
Matthew - I went to shoot the balls and I went in the Indian thing. We went
into one of their homes.
Brandon R. - when I saw the whales - they're big!
Nakyya - When we were shooting balls and blowing bubbles
Riley - the games - spin the handle then push the red button and the metal rings
flew up in the air.
Julia - when we went upstairs to the games - blowing bubbles - I blew a huge one!
Marcie - The show about the habitats and petting the snake

Thursday, October 16, 2008

What is in the box?

This afternoon we were treated to a classroom presentation on habitats. During the beginning of the show, the students on the left side of the room kept hearing a thumpking sound. No one knew what it was. Everyone kept looking at this box to try and figure out what could be making the noise. The presenter asked us not to pay attention to it but that was kind of difficult. One of the other MOSH workers even came over and moved the box to the back of the room because the thumping was so loud. Ask your child - What was in the box? Anyone who posts their answer gets a special treat when they come to school!!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Aussie Adventure #4 - Queensland

Queensland has so much to offer. It sounds like such an exciting place to live or visit. The kids were so excited to share what they had learned. Here are a couple quick facts:
1. There is a rainforest there.
2. The Great Barrier Reef is off the East coast.
3. It's the second largeest state.
4. The capital is Brisbane.
5. Also called the Sunshine State.
6. They grow bananas.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A Star is Born

For those of you who don't know Nakyya, you are missing out! She can make anyone smile. And her smile is one of the things that people love about her. Her smile, charm, and knowledge of our school provided the opportunity for her to be chosen as the tour guide for our district visitors yesterday. Nakyya came dressed in her adventurer outfit ready to WOW our visitors. She welcomed two people that were in Duval County to complete the county accredidation. She led them around the lobby, front office, art room, media center, and our standards board while providing them with a little bit of insight into the beauty of our school. They were very impressed with how well this young first grader showcased our school and the work around our school. We are so proud of you Nakyya!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

A Day of Mem Fox

On Friday we had our Mem Fox Celebration Day. What a day full of fun and excitement centered around Mem Fox and her work. The kids began with a Reader's Theatre of Wilfred Gordon McDonald Partridge. Each student was able to perform in a group. The kids loved it and so did all our guests. Next we went back to our room and did fun activities. We made possum bag puppets - just like Hush from Possum Magic, made our aboriginie art, painted our clay boomerang pins, played vocabulary bingo with words from the unit, and pirate hats just like Tough Boris. It was so busy we barely made it through all our fun activities. Hopefully the kids loved celebrating Mem Fox and her home of Australia. I know they learned so much about her as a writer and enjoyed reading her stories over the last couple weeks. Now we are all better writer's too!

Our Own Todd's Odd Day

Thursday, October 2, 2008

What is scruffy?

This week one of our vocabulary words was "scruffy". In the story Tough Boris, Boris Von de Borch is scruffy. While having this discussion, we were giving examples of things that may be scruffy. One of those examples was my dog Maxie. I promised I would take a picture of Maxie in her scruffy stage - right before she needs a hair cut. Sometimes scruffy can be cute!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Story Problems

Over the last couple weeks we have been working on story problems in math. For first graders, this can be challenging. Believe it or not, it doesn't take long for them to learn multiple ways to solve a problem though. Here is one problem that was given to the class with four different ways to solve that problem. Students must show all their thinking with pictures and numbers. As they become better mathematicians through the year, they will also include words to describe their answers.

It's about comprehension!

Throughout our author study of Mem Fox we have been working on different ways to build our comprehension of her work and other literature. One of the favorite things we have done in our classroom has been our Reader's Theatre. Reader's Theatre is a great way to practice fluency, teach intonation, and build comprehension. Our first grader's have loved reading a script of Wilfred Gordon McDonald Partridge. We have also learned how build comprehension though different graphic organizers. These have included story maps, story webs, character webs, and venn diagrams. Ask your child to tell you about the different comprehension strategies we discussed in class.

What is a student generated rubric?

In Writer's Workshop our goal is not only for us to assess student work but for student's to be able to assess their own work as well. One way that we are able to teach them to do this is through a student generated rubric. When we begin working on a genre of writing, students learn what is important to make that work meet the standard through the mini-lesson. The students are able to practice what is taught during the independent work period. Once they are starting to understand all the elements of that genre, we begin to put together a rubric as a class. It is important that this does not become a teacher rubric but one that the students create. The students decide how we will label the different levels of writing. In this instance, Matthew from our class reminded me that last year I told him we could do the one he wanted on our next rubric. Our next rubric was this year - and yes, Matthew made sure to let me know. So the class voted and they too liked his idea of labeling the different stages of writing as a baby, toddler, and big kid (I just looked for the clip art to go with it). Then the students decide what elements are important to make the writing "its best" such as including a beginning. The students decide what they feel are important in a beginning. From there we decide what should be included on each level. Then we go on to include other elements as we progress through that genre of writing. Through this whole stage, students are using their own words to describe the writing and the elements which they feel are necessary to be a "big kid" writer. Sometimes the students disagree on what something should be called or how it should be worded so we take a class vote to decide. It always amazes me that the children know exactly what makes good writing and set the expectation as high as I would if I were writing it myself. I am also "Wowed" by the language they choose as young writers.

We use this consistently in class to look at work from other students and decide where he/she falls on the rubric. Students use it to determine their own needs as a writer. We also use it when they are reading their work to a partner and helping each other to grow. Check out a piece of work later this week that showcases a piece of work that began as a "toddler" and has grown into a "big kid".

Apples...A Great Book For Fall

Looking for a great book to read as we begin Oct.? Here is a great non-fiction book by Gail Gibbons who is wonderful at writing non-fiction text.