all, and, am, are, at, be, big, but, can, car, day, down, did, do, eat, for, from, fun, get, give, go ,good, had, has, he, him, her, I, in, is, it, kick, look, like, make, me, new, no, not, of, on, out, play, saw, she, see, tell, the, to, they, up, us, was, we, went, want, will, with, you

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

End of quarter coming soon!

Hello families!

Today I sent home the Unit 2.2 math assessments (I think that only 2 students are still working on it).  I noticed that there are a couple of standards that need some re-teaching.  One is the math standard regarding understanding the meaning of the equal sign involving addition and subtraction. 
For example, here is a problem much like the one on the assessment:

? + 6 = 10-2

Yes, it can be overwhelming to look at.
I have taught students to solve for the 10-2 and then rewrite the equation as:

? + 6 = 8

Now, they can use their knowledge of math facts to solve for the unknown, or they can count up from 6 to 8.
I will reteach this concept and the kids will do a some more work in this area before we start our new unit.

Also, those students who have been working so hard on the Making Words homework...THANK YOU!
The practice of cutting out and rearranging the letters is beneficial in learning spelling patterns.  I will send home 3 Making Words sheets weekly through to the end of February or so.
I do not plan on giving any additional homework, but if you think your son or daughter should have more homework, please let me know and I'd be happy to oblige.

Because the half-way point of first grade is only 4 days away (!), I will me doing some mid-year assessments with the students.  This progress monitoring will help in reporting out grades and keeping track of their growth throughout the year.

I believe that report cards will be ready to view on the Aspen program sometime during the first week of February. 

Thank you!!!

Monday, January 5, 2015

January 2015

Hello, families and Happy 2015!

I hope that you all had a wonderful 12 days with your precious children.  I missed them so much over vacation.  I thought of them all often.

Here are a few things to tell you about:

1.  We have just started a new earth science unit called "Pebbles, Sand, and Silt."  Today we observed 3 types of volcanic rocks with hand lenses and noticed what happened when we rubbed them together.  I overheard many scientific discoveries, such as "I made sand!" and "The white rock is like chalk!" as well as "Little pieces are breaking off!"

2.  This week the first graders will go up to the computer lab to get their first in-school experience in keyboarding skills.  As they move on in the grades, efficient keyboarding skills will be necessary.
The program which we will use at school is Internet-based, meaning that they will be able to access it at home for future practice.
Stay tuned for more info....

3. We are in the middle of our math unit and will be finishing up next week.  Today and tomorrow, our focus is on using addition to solve a subtraction problem.  We call it "THINK ADDITION."  For instance, if I am asked

13-6 = ?

I can think 6 + ?  = 13
If we know our addition facts, it's easy.  If not, we can count up!
Start at 6 and count up 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13!  I had to count up seven numbers!  The answer is 7!

We will finish the unit with word problems (both addition and subtraction)!

Monday, December 1, 2014

December is here!

Hello, families!

It's hard to believe that today is the first day of December.  Tomorrow marks the 60th day of school.  Time needs to S-L-O-W D-O-W-N!!!

Meanwhile, we are plugging along in first grade.  The "Choose MyPlate.gov" mini-unit is going well!  We have all learned about the 5 food groups and how to identify foods as being a part of a particular food group.  We have discussed the fact that people add things to foods in order to make them taste appealing (sugar to cranberries, ketchup for example).  We have thought about why we like to eat certain foods together (pasta with chicken nuggets, sauce with pasta), too.

On December 11th our class will visit a PTO-created holiday store just for kids!  All items are priced $5.00 and less (with most items $1 or $2).  Kids will be able to shop for family members.   In the past, we have even wrapped and tagged gifts in class.  More information will follow via a flyer from the PTO.

We will finish our math unit on data and measurement this week and the kids will be assessed on Friday.  Look for the assessment to come home next week.  Our next unit will be on addition and subtraction and the relationship between the two.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.
Thank you!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

December plans...

Dear Families,

We have a new student in 1-2!  She has moved from New Jersey and we welcomed her into our classroom on Friday.  I hope that she didn't get overwhelmed with all the attention and cards made for her!!!  I look forward to spending the rest of the year with her in our first grade family.

I am wrapping up parent/teacher conferences this week.  I am so proud of these kiddos.  First grade is rigorous!  These kids rise to challenges with confidence and pride.  I love watching them grow.

Tomorrow evening (Monday, November 24th), from 5-6pm is our first grade "Balance and Motion Family Night!"  It's has been a successful, annual event and I am looking forward to it! 

Now that our first science unit is completed, I would like to introduce an integrated unit for the month of December called "Serving Up My Plate."  It's an interactive unit about making healthy food choices.  There are 9 lessons in this unit which was provided by the USDA using the MyPlate icon.  For more information, visit  http://www.choosemyplate.gov/kids/ParentsEducators.html

In mathematics, we have completed the "data" portion of our unit and have begun "time."  I have introduced the following terms:  minute hand, hour hand, clockwise, counterclockwise, digital, and analog.
The first grade standard is to learn how to tell time to the hour and half-hour.
The last portion of our unit involved measurement using non-standard units.  For instance, I might ask "How long is this table if I were to measure in Mrs. Turenne shoes?  In crayons?  Why would it take more crayons than Mrs. Turenne shoes?"

On Tuesday of this week we are lucky enough to be invited to enjoy the second grade's Thanksgiving musical performance!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Balance and Motion Family Night!!!

Dear Families,

On Monday, November 24, 2014 from 5:00-6:00pm, the first grade teachers will host the annual


Join the fun in the Melrose Multipurpose Room while your first grader teaches you all there is to know about balance and motion!
You will hear science vocabulary, such as "momentum," "gravity," "weight," "friction," and much, much more!!!

We hope to see you on Monday!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Scholastic Reading Club

Hello, families!

I just want to remind you that if you want to order anything from the October First Grade or SeeSaw Scholastic Reading Clubs, the orders are due on Friday, November 21st.
After Thanksgiving, I will send another book order home for December.
Thank you!

I look forward to meeting with you all for parent-teacher conferences!

Mrs. Turenne

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

report cards, conferences, reading, ...and more!

Hello, families!

Today finds me feeling very grateful for all of those brave, selfless men and women who have served in the armed forces (and who continue to serve).  I am blown away thinking about the sacrifices that they have made (and still make).  I know that 6- and 7-year-olds might not understand the big picture of what Veterans Day means, but I tried to do my part.

Anyway, this week I will complete first quarter report cards! The report cards will not be posted in Aspen until November 20th, therefore, I will have a copy handy during our parent/teacher conferences next week.
It can be very difficult to decipher what a number actually means on a report card and I will do my best to give you the "full picture."

I did send home parent/teacher conference reminders last Friday.  I hope that you have received yours and the date and time are still good for you.  I truly enjoy conferences as it give me a chance to chat about the fabulous first graders I have in my class as well as to get to know you, the parents/guardians, a little bit better!

This week and next, I will be doing a reading assessment with your child.  This reading assessment will determine the reading level at which your child is fluent and comprehending. This level will change throughout the year and I will do my best to keep you informed!

A note about cold weather:  many kids in first grade complain about dry hands and chapped lips throughout the cold weather months.  It might be a good idea to put a stick of chap stick and a sample-size container of hand lotion in you child's backpack.  I remember doing this for my son and it was quite convenient for him.
Also, don't forget that the kids go outside for recess daily! Be sure to prepare them for the weather!  This means to dress in (or pack) a hat, mittens or gloves, and a coat.

Thank you so much!