Sunday, December 22, 2013

Cultural Study: Russia!

Our week was chock full of Russian culture. We learned many neat things about this huge country! Theresa Davis taught us about Russian arts and crafts, money, folklore and geography. We made beautiful faberge eggs after learning about the czar's wish for a beautiful gift to give.
We also learned about matroyshka dolls and the stories they tell.
Our week culminated with an All School Share where we danced the Troika and participated in a quiz game based on facts about Russia. Our class new the answer to the question "What do families offer to visiting guests?" Our answer: "bread and salt!" 

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Our Guest Chef, Mr. Schneider!

Our study of Food Around the World has brought us to China (by class vote), and Mr. Schneider came into our class to show us how to make fried rice. Rice, scallions, ginger, garlic, peas, soy sauce and scrambled eggs were all mixed together in a special pot called a wok. We learned that ginger is used in many dishes from China and that rice is grown in fields called paddies- we were amazed to learn that the rice actually likes to grow in fields that are flooded!

We ate our fried rice with chopsticks!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Food Traditions

Our study of Harvest and Food Traditions Around the World began with learning about each other's food traditions in our own families. We learned that some food traditions have been in our families for over 40 years! We discussed the Thanksgiving food tradition in America as well as traditions that occur seasonally, such as tapping maple trees in the early spring. We illustrated food traditions from our own families.
During this past week we learned about the Jewish food tradition of serving latkes during Hanukkah. We grated many potatoes and cooked up our own latkes during theme time last week!

Friday, November 22, 2013

The Mayflower

We have learned a lot about the Mayflower and the very start of the Thanksgiving tradition. After researching the ship and taking a virtual tour of the ship, we sketched our own Mayflower pictures. We used cray-pas and crayons to bring them to life and are so proud of our drawings! We learned about the Mayflower's journey across the ocean and packed our own "suitcases" with five things we would bring if we had to take the same journey!

We also made storytelling bracelets, each bead represents a part of the story of the first feast with the Pilgrims and Native Americans. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Number Combinations

Our math focus this week was on visualizing and retelling the action in addition story problems. We worked a lot on finding the total of two numbers in a story problem by using one of our addition strategies; Counting All, Counting Some or a Known Strategy, such as using known number combinations. We made paper number chains that show all of the combinations of 10. We also played games that encouraged using the Counting On strategy.

Friday, November 8, 2013


We have moved on from writing Small Moment stories to Fiction. Fiction is a perfect genre for young children because they are so great at pretending! Our focus has been developing the character(s) in our stories- the character that we imagine; giving the character a name, imagining a place for our character and adventures our character has in our story.
During our reading time, our focus is on sequencing events in the order they occurred in a story- retelling a story accurately. After reading The Greedy Python, children practiced their retell skills through pictures.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Where the Wild Things Are

We made Wild Things and wrote about them after reading "Where the Wild Things Are" by Maurice Sendak. They look awesome hanging up in our hallway- come by and take a look!

Friday, October 25, 2013


During our theme time, children have been exploring magnetism! We are using the process of inquiry to predict, plan, record, experiment and reflect on our scientific observations. Children asked questions about magnets and experimented with water, paper and plastic. Today, we made "magnet art", using magnets to create colorful paintings!

Making Shapes

Mrs. Magida's class and our class worked together creating perfect triangle pictures during a special math time with Mrs. Abele-Austin, our math coordinator and our librarian Mrs. Daigle. After reading a story called "The Perfect Square", children snipped, punched and colored to create pictures out of their "perfect triangle"!

In our second math unit, students are exploring shapes in a variety of ways.  Children are working on composing and decomposing 2-D shapes and focusing on making shapes from smaller shapes.  They are also learning to describe, sort and classify shapes, distinguishing the attributes of different shapes.

Friday, October 18, 2013

The Pumpkin Patch

We had so much fun at Grenier's farm!  Mr. Grenier  brought us out into his pumpkin fields where we saw a variety of pumpkins, large and small, some eaten by animals like deer or raccoon and we were able to pick out a small pumpkin to bring home. We were also invited to walk through his corn filed, which was like a giant maze of cornstalks! The Grenier's gave us giant cookies and delicious cider. A big thank you for a wonderful afternoon at the farm!

Friday, October 11, 2013

10 Apples Up On Top

First graders are continuing their fluency practice on their math facts up to 10. We loved reading this silly story and then creating our own Apples Up On Top pictures!

Monday, September 30, 2013

Open House

Our Open House is scheduled for October 9th from 6:00-7:00pm. We are so excited to show you our classroom and our work!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Our Walk to Thatcher Brook

We joined Mrs. Emler's second grade class for a walk over to Thatcher Brook to discover what kind of habitat surrounds a river. With clipboards in hand, we collected data based on our observations. We made many interesting discoveries and had many questions about river life.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Exploring a Sunflower

 As natural scientists, we looked very closely at a sunflower and discovered lots of interesting things- little hairs on the seeds and stem, little bugs, hundreds of seeds, and silky petals!
As artists, we painted our beautiful sunflower!

Friday, September 6, 2013

And We're off!

     What a bunch of hard working first graders! We officially began our Writer's Workshop this week. This is our last activity of our day and it is a wonderful way to end our day, sharing and writing stories. We are currently working on narrative stories- writing about “small moments” that we want to share. Our focus is on telling the story in sequence with a beginning, middle and ending. We work on using transition words such as “and”, “then”, and “when”. We are learning to plan our story, tell our story, and finally write our story. We are also reading and discussing many stories written by Kevin Henkes, a new favorite author of ours!
Writer's Workshop

     During Math, we are focusing on Counting and Quantity. Children are focused on developing strategies for accurately counting a set of objects by ones. We are working in our Math Activity books and also exploring the characteristics of cubes, pattern blocks and geoblocks.
What we noticed!

     During our Literacy time, we are learning how to choose a “Just Right Book”. This is a book that is interesting to read and a book where we can read most of the words. For children to read independently and practice reading, they need a variety of books at their direct disposal. In our classroom, each child has their own book box, complete with three to eight Just Right Books. The most important thing to do to become a better reader is to read Just Right Books. 
Preparing or Book Boxes

     Our theme time sometimes consists of science, social stories or literacy projects. This week we participated in another experiment “Mixing Colors”. We focused on Inquiry- asking questions and finding answers! Our color mixing experiment was very cool as children explored the ideas of liquid, oils and colors!

                                                       The Color Mixing Experiment

           Weekly News is going home for the first time. Children are writing a sentence or two about our week at school. Please read your child's news and respond with a sentence or two- you can write directly in their journals.