Friday, January 30, 2015

Buckaroo news for January 27th-30th

Hello Families!  What an exciting week at Camp Buckaroo!  Even though we lost one day due to snow, we sure made up for it.  Here is just a quick snapshot of our learning for this week.  In Word Study, we have been working on /long a/ patterns such as /ay/ and /ai/.  Next week we will explore the pattern /eigh/.   Each small group is also working on an additional pattern based upon their particular need.  In Writer's Workshop, we are brushing up on our punctuation.  We learned the purpose of the period, question mark, and exclamation mark.  Next week, we will be editing one letter to "mail."  Towards the end of next week, we will embark on a huge writing project.  The children will be writing their own Valentines to each other rather than buying them.  I've done this the past several years and the children love it!  Their words to each other mean so much more than the words printed on cards from the store.  More information about this coming next week in the blog.  In science, we learned about rookeries, creches, and porpoising.  The highlight, of course, was the visit from the penguins that you'll see below.  In math, it is a continuation of working with tens and ones.  Currently, we are comparing two numbers with two digits.  I've been attaching math homework the the work mats of children that may have had confusions for each day's lesson.  I do not need them returned but wanted to give you a resource in which to help your child at home.  Oftentimes, when concepts are challenging to grasp, the child just needs more time and experience and this is one way to help.  In Reader's Workshop, we are continuing to learn how to make meaningful connections.

Here is our related arts schedule for next week:  Monday - P.E.   Tuesday - Art Wednesday - Music   Thursday - Library   Friday - P.E.
This little guy has decided to write to Five Guys persuading them to use another kind of oil to fry their foods rather than peanut oil which could make him sick.  He even decided to add some flourish to his greeting to persuade them to listen even more.  It says, "Dear Royal Five Guys."   I would change my practice if I got a letter like this!
Dressed up and ready for our penguin visit today!
Our collection of blankets has begun!  The children got more and more excited about each blanket that was brought in today.  We will be collecting until next Friday if you'd like to send a new or gently-used blanket in.  
Origami in library this week!
More origami with a parent of one of our first graders!
I won't share too much about the pictures because I'd prefer that your child tell you about the visit.  I will tell you that this is an African penguin names Trout.

This is also an African penguin names Halibut.  She is still considered a chick at only a year.  She was hatched at the Columbus zoo!

This is Dury Sudduth and he is a volunteer at the Columbus Zoo.  He is not only fantastic with animals but he is equally so with children.  They hung on every word and I know that they will be eager to share all that they've learned and experienced through this once-in-a-lifetime experience.  Thank you so much, Dury, the young ladies that brought the penguins, and the Columbus Zoo for allowing us this awesome opportunity!

Friday, January 23, 2015

Buckaroo News for January 20th-23rd

It was another short week full of great learning!  Here is a snapshot of what we did this week.  I have begun formerly assessing your child's reading progress.  It's amazing how far they've all come since the beginning of the year!  

In Word Study, we learned the importance of silent /e/ at the end of words.  We worked on the /ace/ family and the /ice/ family of words.  In Writer's Workshop, we have been doing an activity called "Four Corners."  Ask your child to share what this is.  It has been helping us to learn to share our opinions along with reasons to back up our opinions.  We've generated a pretty extensive list of possible topics in which to write letters sharing our opinions but all have been about our wants and needs.  Today, we talked about how our writing can persuade others about world issues and injustices.  Several shared how they felt about people and/or animals not having homes.  A few decided to take up this cause and began crafting letters expressing their opinions.  They are young but their words are mighty!  In science, we are continuing to learn all we can about penguins to prepare us for our penguin visit from the Columbus Zoo.  One child wants you to know that "Penguins find food."  We are soooooooo excited!  Ask your child to share at least three facts with you this weekend:).  In math, we took our post-assessment over tens and ones.  This was one of the most challenging concepts we've learned thus far.  Some of the children need more time and experience with this concept and we will be revisiting it.  Our next topic of study is comparing and ordering numbers to 100.  In Reader's Workshop, we are continuing to learn how to make meaningful connections.  We learned that there are four ways to connect to a story.  They are text-to-self, text-to-text, text-to-world, and text-to-media.  

I am scheduling conferences for the week of February 9th.  The 9th is already full but I still have times available 10th, 11th, and 12th.  Please let me know if you'd like to schedule a time.  

Monday is P.E.     Tuesday is Art     Wednesday is Music     Thursday is Library 
Friday is P.E. again
We got a 5 because we gave a lot of good compliments.  Our class worked really hard to get a 5.  If we get three 5's in a row then we will get a party of some kind.  This is our first 5 in P.E. and we are excited about getting three in a row.  
We read another book about Patricia Polacco called Thank You, Mr. Falker when she was younger. She didn't learn how to read until fifth grade.   In this one, she was in fifth grade.  In this story, Jody passed away because he grows too fast and his heart couldn't catch up.  He passed away when he was asleep.  They made a plane called the Junkyard Wonder for him.  They were making the plane take off for Jody because he named it.  They hoped it would make it to Heaven.  They launched it off of the school roof even though the principal said they couldn't at first.  They said it was for Jody.  

Friday, January 16, 2015

Buckaroo news for January 13th-January 16th

Hello Families!  It has been another busy week of learning as evident in the photographs that you will see below.  I've done a lot of reflecting on how far the children have come since the beginning of the year and I'm so proud of them! I have been spending time with each of them to assess their reading progress so you may a notice a change in the level of "warm up" books they are now bringing home to share with you.  
Here is a snapshot of our week.  In Word Study, we worked on the hunk-and-chunks /oo/, /ui/ and /ew/ and we've talked about how all three make the "ooooo" sound.  We're learning that we sometimes have to write a word out using all three before we know which one is written correctly because our eyes will tell us.  I've also moved the word study teams around so your child may be working on a different team if they mention it.  In Writer's Workshop, we are continuing to work on persuasive letters.  We played a game called Four Corners.  I gave four choices after a statement and the children had to go to the corner that best reflected his/her opinion.  Then that group had to come up with at least two good reasons to defend their opinion.  For example, which season is the best season?  This is an activity that I will be adapting to all subject areas as they LOVED moving around and making choices.  We are also reading a lot of books to model this type of writing.  In Science, we are continuing our study of penguins.  The children explored PebbleGo and chose a penguin in which to do research.  In Math, we are working with tens and ones. We also worked on writing in expanded form which was tricky.  For example, 46=40 +6.  In Reader's Workshop,  we are learning how to make meaningful connections.  I read a very touching story to them entitled Thank You, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco.  It was a long story to read but the children were silent as I read the story of a little girl who struggled to learn to read.  Many of them raised their hands to show that they could relate and connect to her feelings of frustration learning to read.  It opened up a great discussion.  Of course, I cried at the end and had trouble finishing the story but the children understood that they were tears of joy and not of sorrow:).

Conferences are coming up.  My plan is to hold them the week of February 9th in the mornings before school and during related arts time from 1:45-2:30.  If you feel that you need a conference please let me know and we will arrange a time.  

Our schedule for next week:  Monday - NO SCHOOL  Tuesday - P.E.  Wednesday - Art  Thursday - Music  Friday - Library
We were learning about penguins using the laptops.  
This picture was taken after the big game between Ohio State and Oregon.  The Buckeyes won!!
This kid is holding Phoebe, our library dog.  Phoebe is cute and cuddly and when we are listening to Miss Clark read a book she falls asleep on Miss Clark's lap.  Phoebe is our school dog.  Phoebe begs for chicken and salmon from Mrs. McNeal.  These are two of her favorite foods.
During math, we made a tens and ones game.  You build towers of tens with ones.  
We made bowls in Art.  We are holding those bowls and the penguins that you're seeing we made in our classroom.  Mrs. McNeal took our picture.  To make the bowls, we used clay and we put our thumb in and started to pinch it. All of us made our bowls different.  None of us copied each other.  All of you that are reading the blog right now, you might notice that some of the kids don't have their bowls because they had to get them reglazed which is painting with special paint.  
One of the girls is giving the other girl bunny ears.  We were playing the How To Build a Robot game on Starfall.  The game was on the 2nd grade math on Starfall.  
Today we are learning about Martin Luther King, Jr. because yesterday was his birthday.  On Monday, we celebrate him.  He gave his speech in front of the Washington monument.  In the video that he says his speech, he says "I have a dream" a lot!  
Here is a picture of him.  On the computer it was peach but on the whiteboard it was black and white.  On YouTube, this was when he was doing his speech and saying "I Have a Dream" a lot.  

Friday, January 9, 2015

Buckaroo News for January 5th-January 9th

Happy New Year to all of you!!!  It's been a crazy first week back with the two snow days but we've managed to squeeze a lot of learning into just three days.   You could possibly blame us for the two snow days because we learned a new song on Monday called Snow Day and every time we sang it this week we ended up with a snow day the next day:)  Here is a snapshot of what we've been learning about this week.  In Word Study, we have been learning about the hunk-and-chunks /ew/ and /ui/.  I've also reassessed each child on consonant and vowel patterns and have reconfigured our word study teams.  Each week, your child will be bringing home work with his/her words so that you know what your child is working on.  We work on that group of words for nine days before being assessed on that particular pattern.  In Writing Workshop, we have begun a study of persuasive writing.  I'm reading lots of books to demonstrate how powerful our words can be to change a mind or to even change the world.  So far, the children did an on-demand writing just so that I could see what they could do on their own before instruction.  I then showed them how to write a letter and they've begun choosing people to write to to persuade them on something of interest to them.  Today we brainstormed a list of suggestions for possible topics in which to write.  In Science, we are learning about the lives of penguins.  We've watched and excursion to Antarctica on YouTube where people were able to get up close with Emperor penguins.  We paid close attention to their habitat and painted beautiful pictures of their habitats today.  While painting, we learned about the horizon line and how to draw 3-dimensionally to show a hole in the ice.  This study will continue for the entire month of January ending with a visit from a real penguin from the Columbus Zoo!!  We can't wait and are learning all we can before this visit!  In Math, we are working with tens and ones.  I have found that the children have no trouble counting by tens but when they have to go from counting by tens to counting by ones for the ones left over things get tricky.  Any extra help at home, would be great.  An idea is to give your child a handful of small objects such as buttons, marshmallows, Legos, etc. and have your child put them in groups of tens with possible leftover ones.  Have them practice counting the group.  In Readers Workshop, we have started the year talking about how we make meaning by making connections with what we are reading.  I put this idea into concrete form for the children by giving each one a puzzle in a baggy. I asked them if they understood the secret message on their puzzle by just looking at the bag.  Of course, they said NO!  They had to put the pieces together in order to be able to make meaning.  To take this a step further, I asked them to talk about how their secret message made them feel.  We will be working on making meaningful connections for the next month or so.  


Here is our schedule for next week:  Monday - No school   Tuesday - P.E.  Wednesday - Art   Thursday - Music   Friday - Library

I just wanted to give you a heads-up that our second round of conferences will begin in February.  If you don't feel a need to meet with me that is perfectly fine.  If you do feel a need to meet with me, please let me know and we will schedule a time.
We were building blocks at indoor recess for a teddybear park.  What you're seeing is not only a tower.  We are building obstacle courses.  
This girl is holding up an envelope that she made for Mrs. McNeal.  Mrs. McNeal loved it very much!!!
They are doing yoga during recess for a brain break.  A brain break is a favorite kid's kind of video on GoNoodle.  A brain break is to rest your brain.  
These girls are coloring for the teacher and some of them are coloring for themselves or for their moms. 
This boy is on a laptop.  We can use laptops at recess and at Daily Five.  One of  the boys was on PebbleGo and he was looking at blizzards.  This is what he learned.  On December 21st in South Dakota 100 schools and offices had to close.
The girl with the blue shirt on is photo-bombing.  She was making a letter for another girl in this class.
This boy is painting a penguin and the penguin's habitat.  The farther the penguin lives from the south pole, the smaller they get.  Penguins do not live in the North Pole.
The penguins that are the biggest ones live on the bottom of the world.  This is Antarctica.  The girls at table two put fish in the hole in picture saying "hi."
The smallest penguins live in warm places like the Fairy penguins.  Penguins slide on their tummies.