Learning Update!!!

Reading:

Our first grade readers continued to work on discovering the lessons that our characters can learn in some of our favorite picture books.

As we talked more and more about the “big ideas” from our stories, we noticed some similarities and differences between our books.  We tried to really dig deep and make connections between the same lesson and trouble.  Sometimes, our characters experienced the same trouble, but the lessons that they learned were different.

At the end of the week, we reorganized part of our classroom library and grouped many of our favorite books together by the lessons they teach: believe in yourself, speak up, be polite, stay with the group, etc.  Then, we were able to pick books to read from these piles already knowing the lessons the characters (and ourselves) were going to learn.  We can’t wait to read more books and learn more lessons from so many amazing characters!

Writing:

This was our final week of writing realistic fiction. We finished up any stories that were not done at the beginning of the week. Then we picked our very best piece that had everything from our checklist that we worked on last week. We spent some time rereading, editing, and looking at our punctuation to make sure we were ready to celebrate our stories. Finally, we each wrote an “About the Author” piece where first graders share important and interesting facts about themselves with their readers. Once we created a cover for our stories, we celebrated by inviting a kindergarten class to come listen to our stories! We have had a blast creating realistic fiction stories. First graders are so creative and the voice and personality they add to their stories makes it so much fun. Next week, we will be writing our final writing assessment for the year! You can help your first grader brainstorm a real problem and solution for their story this week!

Math:

We continued to study shapes during our math time this week.  We started the week combining triangles, rectangles and squares to form new shapes.  We learned about: rhombuses, trapezoids, parallelograms, and hexagons.  We also found that we could combine and transpose our shapes to create patterns.

Later in the week we began exploring with 3-dimensional shapes! We touched on the following shapes…

We learned about the attributes of each of these shapes.  We also briefly discussed how these 3-D shapes compare to the 2-D shapes. For example: the 3-D sphere is just like a 2-D circle and the 3-D rectangular prism is just like a 2-D rectangle.  We combined different shapes together to create new shapes and also tried to break large shapes apart into smaller ones.

Then, we moved into measurement. We discussed how in the old days before rulers were invented, people used to use their body parts to measure objects.  This kids couldn’t believe this was true and brought up a very big problem… our feet and fingers are different sizes!  We realized that when we use a common unit – like a paperclip – we all get the same results.  To test this theory, we used paperclips to measure various things in our math book and around the room.

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We also introduced the word “length” and talked about how to line up measurement tools properly to get the most accurate measurement.  We compared lengths of objects from shortest to longest and longest to shortest (1, 2, 3).

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