Thursday, December 7, 2017

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December 7, 2017

This is such an exciting and magical time of year!    Here's what is happening in room 301...

Fundations (letter sound/identification) Work:
We will be wrapping up Unit 1 in the next couple of weeks.  This means that we are almost finished working on LOWER-CASE letter ID and sounds.  In the first unit we focused on letter ID/sounds and beginning phoneme awareness (ex. the beginning and/or ending sounds in words) but now students will be concentrating on the middle sounds as well.   In addition, we will also be spending time looking at words that have a CVC (consonant, vowel, consonant) pattern (ex. man, cat, dog, mug).  We will also be learning how to properly form capital letters, which will be taught in alphabetical order, since the sounds have already been linked to the letters during the first unit.

Our last letters before Winter Break are:  "l", "v", "w", "y", "z", "q"

Sight Words:  yes, no, can

Reading/ "Daily 5":
We continue to work through our "Daily 5" reading rotations.  During this time, students move through the room to different letter/word work and writing stations while I meet with small groups.  My goal is to meet with ALL students each day during this time, therefore it is very important that students stay on task and allow others to work as well.  This is something we are really working on right now as a class.

Instruction during small groups depends on the needs of the children.  Most of our small group revolves around book handling skills, taking book walks,  matching picture to text, one-to-one pointing, and retelling important information.  It's amazing to see such growth after such a short amount of time! 

Students continue to practice number recognition and have begun to explore number relationships (greater than, less than).   We played a math game, "Monster Squeeze,"  that they really seemed to enjoy.   Today we played the game with a number line 0-10, but there are other modifications to simplify or extend thinking. 

*please note that the math sent home in last week's Friday Folder is an option for at home additional practice!

I am so happy with the progress students are making in writing.  They get SO excited when I can read what they have written and become motivated to write even more :)   This time of the year is wonderful... things just begin to "click!"
We are really good at coming up with topics to write about... Now, we just need to write more about that one topic.  One thing we have been working on is making a picture book about one topic and then share our stories with partners.   This is such a great way to "rehearse" for the real writing.  I can't wait to showcase these wonderful writers at our Writing Celebration on January 26th (see newsletter for specifics).

On Wednesdays, we have ipads for the afternoon.   We work on JiJi math and then have some time with them during writing as well.   I came across this really fun app called "Scratch" and we've used some of our writing time this week to explore.  This app has allowed the students to think creatively and produce a digital story.    Students are expected to include these four things when working with Scratch:

1) background
2) main character
3) title
4) movement through programming

Students have also been experimenting with "See Saw" in the last week.  We hope to use this more with academic work but for right now, kiddos are still exploring during their free-choice time.  Information was sent home in last week's Friday Folder.  If you have any questions about "See Saw" or are having difficulties, please let me know how I can help!

Monday, October 23, 2017

Monday, October 23

Hope you enjoyed the more Fall-like weather today!  We were so happy to get outside at recess :)

I quickly want to share with you what we are doing in all of our subject areas and then I have a bunch or important reminders and dates. 

Fundations/Letter ID/ sound work- Although we practice all letters, the following are the letters students should be familiar with in knowing sound, ID, and writing the letters with no exception: 
t, b, f, n, m, i, u, c, o, a, g, d, s

This week we are focused on the letters: e, r, p, j

After conferences, we should be ready to move on to the capital letters!!!

Reading-  We continue to work through our Daily 5 rotations where I am now one of the rotations.   I'm trying to get the students to work more independently so I can focus on my reading groups at the same time.   Same days are better than others:)  When we are doing reading groups, we are focusing on book handling skills as well as rhyming words, pointing one-to-one and beginning and ending sounds in words.   I look forward to add more to our ABC/Word Work Station by next week.

Look for SIGHT WORD PRACTICE in Friday Folders!

Math-  This week we are working with "Ten Frames" that helps with composing and decomposing numbers to 10.   The students are getting super quick at representing numbers!   We will also be working on making collections of objects using different arrangements.  The activities we do in the classroom will really encourage the kiddos to be flexible mathematicians :)
On Wednesday we are going to explore the shape, rectangle and will create a rectangle collage.   Finally, we will end the week by inventing and solving "Number Stories" using a variety of math thinking.  Our focus will mostly be on the concept of addition.

Writing-  We are really becoming writers in room 301!  I am amazed at the sounds the kids are hearing in the words they want to use in their writing.  Their faces light up when I can read their stories BEFORE they tell me :)   They say, "You can read it?" or "I did it?"  I'm so proud of their efforts.   We continue to work on Narrative Stories... stories about things that have really happened to them.   This week we are working on coming up with a simple 3-6 word sentence, sounding out/ stretching the word out to hear beginning and ending sounds (some kids are already doing middle too).  We are also talking about how word spaces help others read your story easily!   I look forward to sharing some of these stories at conferences. 

Science-  Mrs. Fitch, our Media Specialist, will be team teaching with me about the "Human Body!"
We will do fun activities that revolve around our body systems, parts and functions.   I will be tweeting some fun pics!!!


Wednesday, October 25thour class will be videotaped saying the PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE for KOMU news to be aired at a later date. 
*if you would NOT like your child to participate, please let me know by tomorrow night. 

Friday, October 27th-   "FALL PARTY" -  our party will begin at 2:30 and end at 3:00.   Jennifer Self (Charlotte's mom) is our room parent and she,along with other classroom parent volunteers has come up with a fun party that the kids will really enjoy. 

During the morning, we will be partnering up with a first grade class to decorate our pumpkins from our field trip.   I will be sending out a "Sign-up Genius" if you are interested in donating some fun "stuff" for decorating on that day. 

NOTE:  Halloween costume are NOT to be worn to school on Fall Party day OR on Halloween.  


Friday, November 3rd- GRADE CARDS ARE SENT HOME

Other Stuff:

-turn in CONFERENCE FORMS if you did not today

-If you have any extra magazines at home that you are finished with, we would love to use them in our classroom for a variety of activities (any kind as long as appropriate)

-From here on out, I will be leaving the "Completes Homework" section of the Weekly Update blank until the end of the week when the reading calendars are due. 

-Please, please, please talk to your child about tattling and name calling.   This has been happening a TON the last couple of weeks.   Thanks in advance :)  We have talked a lot about the "Golden Rule."

Don't forget to sign up for "Mystery Reader."  The kids love this!

*be looking for sign-up genius on your email sometime soon AND sight word practice on Friday! 

I think that's it!  Have a great night! 

Sunday, October 1, 2017

October 1, 2017
I hope you all had a chance to get out and enjoy this beautiful weather.   This post is going to include a lot of information about what's happening in room 301 as well as reminders and upcoming events!

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Fundations letter names and sounds: 
 "i", "u" (this is the first intro. lesson on vowels)
Students are really applying their fundations sounds to their reading and writing. 
*the Fundations ABC chart was sent home earlier in the year.  This is a great resource and practice.  Let me know if you need another one.  Students can also use the ABC chart towards their reading minutes.  Below is a video that shows the "letter, picture, sound" structure that we also use in the classroom.   In the next few weeks, your child should be able to do the entire ABC chart independently.


Sight words:  Me, I, like

Our "Daily 5" reading station are up and running in full force!  Working on our reading stamina has paid off.   Students are able to be engaged in a single station for 12 minutes, which means that they are able to move through 5 stations each day.   I am very pleased with how smooth their transitions are from one station to the next.   This allows for so much more learning to happen.  Eventually, I will be pulling small groups to work with , but in the meantime, I move from station to station to support students. 

Here are the 5 stations:
1) Osmo (ipad game where students physically manipulate letter tiles to form beginning sounds)
2) Read to Self-  students read books and ABC charts from their book tubs and can check out a new book from our classroom library at this time
3) PebbleGo/Epic- students use ipad to listen to stories
*this week students will begin to set up their own EPIC library of books (this is something your should be able to have access to at home as well)
4)  ABC Work- we have only done puzzles so far but we will be adding more to reinforce letter ID and Sight Words. 
5) Independent Practice Station- worksheets or other practice to reinforce what we are learning

This week we will:
-examine, describe and compare a variety of triangles
-make number boards to reinforce our counting skills, focusing on the "one more" counting pattern
-use concrete, nonverbal experiences to develop understanding or addition and subtraction
-determine the number of objects in a set when one object is added. 

Students continue to build their writing folders.   It's really awesome to see their stories come to life on their paper.   We started with drawing a picture to tell a story and now we are beginning to add letter sounds and words to our stories.   Last week we spent time sharing our stories and being a good listener while our partner shares.   We will continue to work on good partnerships as this was a bit tough for us last week. 

This week we are going to add words and labels to our writing, emphasizing the "stretching" of out our of words to hear the sounds of letters to write down.   We are also going to continue working on adding detail to our drawings and sharing with partners. 

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LIBRARY CHECK-OUT IS EVERY WEDNESDAY- PLEASE REMEMBER TO SEND YOUR BOOK TO SCHOOL WITH YOUR CHILD THAT DAY  (if you forget... it's o.k... return the book the next day and your child can check out then)

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PICTURE DAY IS TUESDAY!!!!!! If you do not have an order form, please let me know ASAP so I can send one home.   You can also order online.   Every child will get their picture taken. 

*you will notice that I included your child's number of absences on the weekly update checklist.  This is just FYI and also a simple reminder that unless your child is sick or has a scheduled appointment, we really want them to be a school.

This Week's Calendar:

Monday, October 2-  Dental Clinic (only for those that filled out permission form at beginning of school year)

Tuesday, October 3-  School Picture Day

Friday, October 6-  PTA Movie Night (Food trucks at 5:30 and Movie at 7:00)
                                  Newsletter in Friday Folders

Weekly Updates will be filled out weekly with comments bi-weekly (unless needed otherwise)
On the weeks without comments, a newsletter will be sent home. 

Click on the link below to sign up to be a "Mystery Reader":

Friday, September 1, 2017


Happy September and Happy Labor Day Weekend!

Thanks so much to all of the families that came out to "Get the Scoop Night."  I really enjoyed hear you share more about your child.   I feel like I'm really getting to know each and every one of them.

We spent our first ten days focusing on routine, expectations and community building adn now our day is finally starting to look like a typical kindergarten day with routines that will remain mostly consistent through the remainder of the year.  


Carpet Time:   We are now keeping track of weather for the month and thinking about numbers as tens and ones as we count the days we've been in school

Fundations:   As I mentioned Thursday night, our focus right now is pencil grasp.  Next week we will begin letter formation.

*****be looking for (optional) writing practice for home in next week's Friday Folder along with information that will help in using the same language we use in the classroom.

Reading:  We are beginning to build our classroom reading folders with ABC charts, color poems and a book called "Red."   In addition, we have been practicing how to get our book boxes and go to our spots and read independently.  We will continue to build our reading stamina a little each day!

High-Frequency Words this week:     a   is   the
These were words that we saw repeatedly in our poems and "Red" book.   We will continue to work on these words next week.
*I would suggest writing these words on notecards or post-its and hanging them on the fridge or mirror or wall OR just make flashcards and add to it as new words are introduced.
*keep in mind that not only do the kiddos need to read them, they will also need to write them by the end of the year.

Writing:  We started our writing journal and already have 2 science entries, observations of Paco the bunny and geckos.  I can really tell that the boys and girls are using what they already know about letter sounds to write down their thinking.

Math:  We compared different lengths of paper strips and tried to find matching partners in room, emphasizing our new vocabulary.   We also did our first Math Rotation which focused on shapes.  I am amazed at how quickly they catch on to new routines.

math words:  length, longer, shorter, square, triangle, trapezoid, rhombus, hexagon

*I hope you find time to enjoy the "Math at Home"--- I think your kids will enjoy the activities and become more aware of the math that is around us!

Behavior:  We are having some difficulty at recess and sometimes in the classroom with keeping our hands to ourselves.   The students have been playing games such as Tag, Hide and Seek, and "Zombie." and students are being pushed down or getting overwhelmed, which turns hands on others.  We have a 0 Tolerance for this now and if students are caught pushing or kicking other students (intentionally), they will be asked to walk the class line and then I will process with them and send them back to play.  Our goal to keep your kids happy and safe.   We would appreciate it if you would please remind your child to play safe games and keep hands to self :)

I hope you have a wonderful weekend....
Your teacher is very tired and needs to sleep so important dates will be blogged some time this weekend :)

Friday, August 18, 2017

Friday, August 18th

We are off to a great start in room 301.  We have spent the last two days getting to know one another and becoming familiar with classroom routines and BEU expectations.   The beginning of kindergarten is very busy.   We are learning how to sit on our carpet square, raise our hand before sharing, explore choices for center time, line up in line order, walk on the brown line in the hall, allow others to speak (without "crashing words"), go down the slide, wait our turn to swing, clean up, push chairs in, keep hands to ourselves, keep feet to ourselves...

I am amazed at how quickly these kiddos are adjusting to our classroom.   This is a wonderful group and I can already tell that it is going to be an amazing year!

The kids seem super excited about the Total Eclipse- I hope you have some time over the weekend to read the book together that they worked on today.   I have some fun activities planned for Monday as well as the days to follow after.   Today we had an all school practice and the students did a great job of practicing using their glasses.   I feel like we are well-prepared for Monday.

We will continue to build community and practice routines next week!  

I hope you enjoy the pictures from the last two days!   Enjoy your weekend!


-please send your child with a blanket AND a flashlight on Monday for the Eclipse and other activities
-water bottles are always welcome in the classroom
-weekly updates will begin next Friday (directions will be sent home for how to access)

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

So excited about our first day!!! Don't forget about the "Boo- Hoo Breakfast!"

Friday, April 7, 2017


What?            BEU Kindergarten End of Year Picnic
When?            May 25th (Last Day of School) @ 10:00
                        *this is an early dismissal day at 12:50
Where?          BEU cafeteria & BEU playground

Why?               Celebrating the last day of Kindergarten

Teachers will share a slideshow in the cafeteria and then there will be a picnic lunch (school sack lunch or lunch brought from home) on the playground! 

Due to limited space, please limit your guests to just immediate family members.

More specific info. will be sent home soon!

Kindergarten Teachers