Classroom Notes – Nov. 13, 2017

Thank you families for attending parent/teacher conferences last week. I appreciate your time, support, and insights concerning your child. It truly helps to inform my instruction and helps me understand your child better. Our teamwork helps your child get the best out of their day here in Room 8. As conferences go by quickly, please do not hesitate to contact me if you have more questions.

We are just kicking off new literacy units. We will be delving into writing opinions and reviews in the coming weeks, and diving a little deeper into strategies for solving tricky words in our reading, in the Word Detectives unit. In the coming weeks we will be reviewing a variety of things. If you are out dining in the neighborhood,  please pick up a  “take out” menu for our class collection. They will be helpful in the coming weeks!

In math, we are ramping up our work with addition and subtraction. We have several new work places coming out this week. We will be using odd and even number array pieces to help build number sense and addition skills, and we will also learn to use a number line to support our computation strategies. We will continue to work on writing numbers without reversals.

As the holiday season approaches we will begin to talk about winter celebrations and traditions from around the world. Please contact me if you have a family tradition that you’d like to share with the class. It’s always fun to have guest teachers in the classroom to share traditions at this time of year.

Cheers!

Ms. Sarah

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Classroom Notes – Sept. 26, 2017

We have been busy learning our Reading & Writing Workshop routines – getting our materials out and getting to work right away. Reading & Writing are serious work in First grade and this group is meeting the challenge well. Our energy is starting to calm down and we are settling in more quickly. Bravo!

In writer’s workshop we have been writing about things that have happened to us, or about things we do. A few friends are really stuck on writing Minecraft  stories. These types of stories are hard to incorporate some of our first grade writing skills, so I could use your help in helping your children generate ideas for real stories – again, things that they do or things that have happened to them. To make this fun you can practice telling stories at home around the dinner table. Don’t forget to include a beginning, a middle, and an end.

Don’t forget to check out the classroom blog and twitter feed at msjamesbarry@wordpress.com and https://twitter.com/SJamesbarry. Please feel free to email me questions or concerns at sjamesba@pps.net.

Cheers,

Ms Sarah

Classroom Notes – June 6, 2017

It’s hard to believe we have just six days left of school! As this is our last classroom notes for the year, I want to thank parents for all of the support you have given your kiddos this year. First grade is full of many changes and transitions; not all of them are easy. As I look back over the year’s projects, I can see evidence of so much growth and learning in all of these kiddos! Bravo!

Over the next week, the class will be working to finish up the Farm math projects. We are putting the last of our animals on the map and will spend one last day filling in any other spaces with crops and gardens. We will then create our farming community to celebrate all of the hard work that went into creating these masterpieces. In writing, we started our collection writing today. The kids had a fabulous time sharing their collections with friends and then writing about their favorite collection piece.

We will be having our Summer birthday celebration next Monday, June 12. Thanks parents signing up to bring snacks. On Tuesday afternoon, we will be walking to Berkeley Park with our buddy class for some end-of-year fun. Parent helpers are invited to go with us.

I wish everyone a fabulous Summer! And kiddos, I look forward to saying “Hello’” next year!

Ms. Sarah

Classroom Notes – May 30, 2017

I hope everyone had a great Memorial Day weekend! We sure got lucky with the weather. We have just three short weeks left and so much still to do! Our caterpillars emerged from their pupa stage as butterflies this morning. It was quite exciting to see them slip out of their chrysalis with wet crumpled wings, only to see them flapping their wings just a short while later.

We will be working on our Farm maps all week in hopes of finishing up early next week. Then we have some writing and comparison work to do with the information on the maps. And to wrap it all up, we will visit the gym and piece all of the farms together to make a patchwork quilt of farms.

There are some fun stories being written in Room 8 this month! The class will be finishing up their farm stories this week. The kids will be getting their series ready for publication this week by working on revising and editing their stories. We will then share them with the Kindergartners next week.

Cheers!

Ms. Sarah

Classroom Notes – May 16, 2017

The kids did a wonderful job on their drama performance. They worked really hard learning their lines and practicing their scenes. We invited two kindergarten classes to be our audience, set up the room like a theatre, and performed the story The Great Kapok Tree. I posted the performance on twitter.com/SJamesbarry.

We are spending much of our days focusing on farms. In math, we are creating paper models on a giant grids. The kids have bought roads, land, farmhouses, and barns, and silos. They will begin adding animals later this week. Today they started making a mini-map of the farm model.

In writing, each student is writing a series of stories that take place on a farm. We have begun Book One. Ask your kiddo who their character is and what their first adventure will be!

Our field trip to Tryon Creek is next Monday. We will be boarding the bus at 9:15. Please help your child dress for the weather, as we are spending the morning in the forest. The park has asked if they could take photos of our class for their promotional purposes. They have asked if we could bring consent forms with us on Monday (this is optional of course, if you opt out they will not take photos of your child.) I will send these home on Wednesday. Please bering them back ASAP, along with permission slips. Thanks!

Classroom Notes – May 9, 2017

First of all, a big thanks for the kind words of appreciation last week. It has been an interesting year at Lewis, with many challenges and changes, and your support really means a lot to me. I truly appreciate it so Thank You!

This week we are starting our final math unit on Money, Place Value, and Mapping. Each student will be creating a map of a farm. We will be learning about arrays and area, money and adding double digit numbers, and planning visual representations. The class always has a lot of fun with this unit. We can always use an extra hand in the classroom. Check the schedule if you’d like to come help out.

We will be present our short play The Great Kapok Tree to Ms. Ashley’s kindergarten class next Monday. I will make a video and post it on the blog so that parents can see it. Lastly, our field trip to Tryon Creek Park is coming up on Monday May 22nd. Permission slips will be coming home soon.

Cheers,

Ms. Sarah

Classroom Notes – April 25, 2017

My how time flies! It has been a busy month. The kids are enjoying their time with Larry from the Oregon Children’s Theatre. They are exploring movement and the elements of acting – plot, setting, and characters and their relationships, the use of loud and clear voices, and gestures and movement. We will work for three more weeks with Larry.

Our last visit from the Tree Lady was on Tuesday afternoon. We explored the school grounds to learn about the trees and plants around us. Thank you to all of the parent helpers that have helped make these guest teacher visits run more smoothly!

In the classroom, we have been taking a closer look at geometric shapes in math, writing sentences that Show, Don’t Tell in writing, and continuing to follow our characters through their adventures in reading. We will begin exploring the life cycle of a mealworm at the end of the week!

Finally, next week in Art Night! The school transform into an art gallery for the evening of Thursday, May 4th, from 6:00 -7:30 p.m. There is music and desserts to be enjoyed – as well as friends and families to visit with. It is truly one of the highlights of the Lewis School year. I sent home docent information and sign-up sheet on Wednesday. Please let me know 3 best times in order and anytime that will not work for your family. Being a docent is optional, but the kids have a lot of fun doing it.