Today we continued our first "Picturing Writing" lesson. Right now we are in the beginning stages of program . We are practicing the correct way to use watercolor paints and brushes. Above are students painting with 2 colors during our work session. The focus was not mixing colors or making our painting look "muddy". We are practicing sweeping our brush across the page and only painting into the white spaces. This will take some time to master but I believe that we can do it. My goal is to show lots of great painting and writing pieces at conferences. To teach this curriculum I attended a week long training during June. I have a lot of great ideas and activities in store for this year in writing and am so excited to teach my first graders.
Comments on our panting experiences so far...
"I like to paint paper." Martha
"I like to paint" Mark
"I like your painting because it's very neat." Catherine
"I like the colors" Liliana
My students this year are so excited to learn. For one of our literacy centers we were practicing building words. The students are doing such a great job staying on task and following directions. I could't be happier with their progress so far. I can't wait to see how much we can accomplish by the end of the year.
Today was Constitution Day! Mr. Woodward challenged each classroom with a list of trivia questions to answer by the end of the day. We learned a lot about the Constitution and a few of the framers. Above is two students who were super excited about their "George Washington" style hat and white wig. We ended up getting ever trivia question right!!
Two very important skills I want all of my students to master is reading to someone and listening to someone read. Today I put students with a partner and let them practice reading leveled decodable books to each other. We talked a lot about not being afraid to read to a partner and make mistakes. We are all learning to read and sometimes that can be a bit frustrating. I believe that listening is also a great skill to practice. We all value being heard, it makes us feel good on the inside to show what we know and to also feel safe enough to ask for help.
In first grade we take spelling tests once a week on Friday. On short weeks, like last week we will have a spelling practice test week where we still have words we practice every day but its not as much of a weighted grade as a regular spelling test. I like to have a full 5 days to practice with the kids before they take the test on Friday. Everyday I devote 1 literacy center to practicing spelling words or putting our words into sentences. We also practice spelling out the words as a group activity on the carpet. Thursday night is spelling homework night. This gives the kids one last chance to practice their weekly list before the test. Above is a picture of our spelling words this week.
Today in Science we had more fun learning about balancing and weighing. We constructed our own equal-arm balance. We then took unifix cubes and weighed them trying to find the perfect balance. I have kids constantly calling me over to see what they have done. It is so great to see them get so excited about science!
Today we started using XtraMath. I have set up accounts for each student to use and practice here at school. Learning how to add and add quickly will be a very useful skill in first grade and on into your students life. We are still getting use to using the program but I believe that this practice will be well worth our time. Let me know if you would like the login information to practice at home and I will be happy to send that home with your student.
A note from Mrs. Page
I am looking forward to kicking off another great year in 3rd grade!