Thursday, October 29, 2015

Buckaroo news for October 26th-29th

Wow!  We just had a fantastic time at our Harvest Party!  Thank you parents for all that you've done to make this a fun day for all of us:).  I'm keeping this short and sweet, as promised!

Questions to ask:

What are you studying during Imagination Station time?  What questions are you trying to answer?
Can you tell me what the equal (=) sign means in an equation?
Use the pictures below for some great conversations about the learning going on at Camp Buckaroo!  

Related Arts schedule:
Monday - Art
Tuesday - Music
Wednesday - Library ( don't forget books-in-a-bag)
Thursday - P.E.
Friday - Art

Monday, November 1st - October Reading logs are due -- Please total the 
              minutes on the log.
Thursday, November 5th - 50th day of school!  Don't forget to dress like
                 someone living in this time period.
Friday, November 6th - SCE Spell-a-Thon

Friday, October 23, 2015

Buckaroo News for October 19 to October 23

The feedback I received in college for my writing was always that I was too wordy.  Turns out they were right as I reviewed the past couple of blogs.  For this reason, all future blogs will be short and sweet:)  

Questions for rich conversation:

Tell me three new things you've learned about bats.
What does the "cheese" mean in a story?
What is your word study team working on this week?
Tell me about your "small moment" story.
Tell me how the Eagle Eye strategy can help you when you're reading?  Can you show me how to use this strategy with one of your books?

Next week's related arts schedule:
Monday - Art
Tuesday - Music
Wednesday - Library ( remember book-in-a-bag books)
Thursday - P.E.  (remember tennis shoes

Upcoming events:
Thursday, October 29th - Harvest Party in the afternoon 
Friday, October 30th - No school for students
Thursday, November 5th - 50's Day to celebrate the 50th day of school!!!!!  
                                       Dress up like people living in the 50's!

We are learning about bats and we are trying to find the one that has the vanilla smell.  Bats can find their pups by their smell and cry.  We did this because bats can find their pups in a colony with millions of bats.

For word study, we are sorting long /i/ words and short /i/ words.  We are doing word study.  We are sorting the pictures and the words.  

We are telling our small moment stories using our arm.  You had to find a partner and tell them your story.  Touching your should means the beginning and the end is your wrist.  The "cheese" is in the middle.

Mrs. Baker was teaching us a new way to warm up our brains for math workshop.  We were listening to the Number Talk and we were trying to do math problems.  We have hand motions for when we know the answer, when we are thinking, how many strategies, and when we agree.

He is writing a lowercase /e/.  If you start your letters at the top, you could be a better reader.  

Every Friday, the children have time to work on a project of interest.  They begin by writing down some questions that they have about a particular topic and then they tell me what they need in order to answer the questions and create a project to teach others.  This is one student's list of questions as she begins to study about fossils.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Buckaroo News for October 12th to October 16th

I can't believe that it is already the middle of October!  Time is flying but we are making the most of every minute of it at Camp Buckaroo.  It was great talking with so many of you for parent/teacher conferences and I look forward to talking with more of you next Thursday.

I'm always looking for better ways to reach children and to help them be the best that they can be.  Doing things "the way we've always done them" just doesn't fit sometimes so changes need to be made if growth is to happen.   The two big changes are coming in the areas of math and reading.  

You might've noticed a colorful workmat coming home each day in math with the concept that we've learned that day and practiced.  These will not be coming home as frequently as I will be pulling lessons from a multitude of great resources that I feel fit the standard that the children need to learn and practice.  The lessons will be more engaging and hands-on so that ALL of the students can access and apply what they're learning.

The second change will effect what your child will be bringing home to read in their book-in-a-bags.  After reading about how to help children self-select good books, I realized that I am doing the opposite of what I'm saying.  Self-selection should be just that but I've been telling children what tub of books I want them taking their "warm-up" books from each week.  This isn't allowing them to "sample" books at all levels to then select the ones THEY feel are just right for them.  Starting today, the children were allowed to choose "warm-up" books from any of the tubs of books so don't be surprised if your child's "warm-up" books are super challenging and maybe even super easy to read.  Self-selection takes time but with lots of opportunities to self-select, they will begin to understand and select books based upon what they feel they need.

Here are some questions to help guide your conversations this weekend about your child's learning this week:

What kinds of pictures did you put on your "heart map?"

What have you learned about bats?  How do you know they are mammals?

Which piece of writing did you share on the "share bench" during Writer's Workshop this week?

What did you like best about Steve Harpster's visit?

What happened to Mrs. McNeal when she stayed at COSI when she was a Brownie?

How are you like Lulu?  How are you different than Lulu?

Upcoming Events:
Thursday, October 22nd - Parent/Teacher conferences
Thursday, October 29th - Harvest Party in the afternoon
                                     Pumpkin Fun in the morning - I am still in need of four
                                     parent volunteers for this morning fun:)  Let me know
                                     if you're interested!
Thursday, November 5th - 50th Day of School!  This is a huge milestone for us
                                      and we celebrate this day by dressing up 50's style.
                                      We will be learning about life in the past compared to
                                      life today for the entire month of November beginning
                                      with 50's day.  I wanted to give you a heads-up so 
                                      that if you see anything "fifties" while shopping for
                                      costumes, you could snag it:)

Next week's related arts schedule:
Monday - P.E.  (remember tennis shoes)
Tuesday - Art
Wednesday - Music
Thursday - Library (remember book-in-a-bag too)
Friday - P.E.
Steve Harvester came to our school for an author visit.  We have one every year.  We learned how to draw turtles, sharks with a jet pack, monsters, and fish.

This girl was looking at Steve Harpster's video of what he drew when he was a kid.  We learned how to draw using numbers and letters.

He is listening to Steve Harpster.  He is also drawing what Steve Harpster is telling him to draw.  

He said that  you don't have to make your drawings perfect.  Just use your imagination and practice.  He helped us draw and then we drew the same thing as him.

Steve Harpster always draws with letters and numbers.  He taught us to concentrate.  He told us to be silent so we could concentrate on our drawings.  

We are taking a picture with Steve Harpster.  We took a picture with him so we can remember when he visited the school.  

This is a silly picture!

She is sharing her work from Writer's Workshop.  Her story was about a cat, a rabbit, and a bear.  It was Writer's Workshop.  She was sharing on the sharing bench.

He was sharing a story about a good apple.  He had so much color and "cheese."  He was reading nice and loud so we could hear him.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Buckaroo news for October 5th to October 10th

Hello Families!  I apologize for no post last week!  I had trouble logging onto our blog and posting all of our great thinking last week.  This was a week full of learning and imagining and rather than telling you all about it, I'm going to help you with some questions to ask your child in hopes that he/she will tell you about his/her week.  I know they are exhausted when they come home each night and it's easy for them to say "nothing" to your question of "what did you do today?"  These questions may help to guide your conversations:).  

Possible Questions for Rich Conversations with Your Child:)

What are you working on in Writer's Workshop?  Tell me about Mrs. McNeal's story about Fireflies.  How did you rate it?

How much of the Phonics Dance can remember without seeing your word wall?  What is your word study team working on?

How are you like Johnny Appleseed?  How are you not like him?  Do you think he was a hero?  Why or why not?

What part of Math Workshop is your favorite part and why?  

Can you name the five parts of the Daily Five?  Which one do you think you'll want to do most days?

Tell me about Lulu.  How is she like you or how is she not like you?


October 12 - Book Orders due

October 12th - Book-in-a-Bag comes back to "shop" for new books

October 14th - Parent/Teacher Conferences -  If you don't remember your time please let me know.

October 29th - Pumpkin Fun!  I'm looking for six volunteers that would like to get their hands all messy and gooey with pumpkin goo along with four first graders.  I would need your help the morning of the 29th.  I will take the first six volunteers...GO!

He did this during Morning Menu.  I chose a book and wrote about a character named Ike.  Ike is smart, gooey, creative, flexible thinker, and his favorite thing is ink.  We are really working hard to think on  a deeper level and this little guy is showing his understanding by relating those thinking skills to characters he's reading about in books!

It was my sharing day.  I could not pick which book to share.  I chose the Princess Party story.

We made applesauce and we ate it.  We used our five senses.  We studied about Johnny Chapman so we decided to make applesauce to celebrate him on his birthday.  

We made Johnny Appleseed art.  We got to be creative.  The artist wants you to know that the little blue dot is a bluebird.