Greetings from Tr. Richelle!
This winter in Reading, we will be continuing our virtual journey around the world, looking up places on the maps that we discover through our reading. This is a fantastic way to integrate language arts, social studies (geography and culture), and math (calculating the distance between two places).
The children are excited to wrap up our Eric Carle read-aloud author study and have been working hard on their colorful painted papers that we will be using to illustrate the culminating project class book we’re writing based on Carle’s book, The Secret Birthday Message. We will soon be starting our next author study, this time exploring the works of Jan Brett. We will also participate in Read Across America Day, which is a nationwide reading celebration that takes place annually on March 2nd, Dr. Seuss's birthday.
We will use both read-alouds and independent or partner reading of passages to practice comprehension skills and strategies, including drawing conclusions, understanding vocabulary in context, predicting, and tracing a pronoun to the source noun to which it refers. We will also continue to compare and contrast fiction and non-fiction texts. In Guided Reading, we will be focusing on prosody (reading with fluency and expression) as well as additional spelling patterns and trick words that we encounter during our small group and one-on-one reading.
In Fundations Unit 8, we will be learning about consonant blends and R-controlled sounds and will practice blending and reading words with up to 4 sounds and a plural suffix. In Unit 9, we will be learning about the differences between closed and open syllables and be introduced to those tricky vowel team sounds (ai, ay, e, es, ey, oi, oy). We’ll learn more vowel team sounds (oa, oe, ow, ou, oo, ue, ew, au, aw) in Unit 10, and will also learn to segment, blend, and add the suffix –s to words with up to 5 sounds. Two new suffixes (-ed and –ing) will be added to our repertoire, and by the end of this unit, we will have learned 66 trick words!
Tr. Chris and I circulate among the writers to support them when they need help, and I confer with each writer to help guide him or her in implementing the skills or strategies from our workshop mini-lessons. The upcoming mini-lessons will be focused on writing about small moments from our lives (personal narratives) and writing for readers. The children have just published their first writing from the workshop, presenting it in the Author’s Chair, and are looking forward to publishing their own books.
Language Arts instruction isn’t limited to scheduled instructional blocks, either! The children enjoy working together to read the daily Morning Riddle and then independently submitting their solution on index cards.
Just in time for the 100th day of school, we will be comparing and ordering numbers to 120 and adding with 10s and 1s in Math.
Estimation skills will be used to estimate how many links we have in long counting chains, and we’ll see how close we can estimate to 100 for the 100th day of school. To deepen our understanding of number relationships, we will be meeting “The Family Named Fact” and creating fact family houses.
In Science, we’ll resume our Making a Difference theme by considering Making a Difference in our Selves. We’ll learn healthy habits -- starting with our hearts for National Heart Month in February. We’ll also explore simple machines to do work (gears, pulleys, screws, wheels, and levers) and magnets and compasses.
We will continue to learn about Americans who have made a difference for Social Studies, including notable Presidents and Quakers. We’ll extend our study of maps to learning basic map skills. The children will be led to make the connection between the compasses we study in Science and the compass roses we see on maps.
We have also received our iPad Minis from the generous Movers and Quakers giving, and the children are really excited to use them during language arts and math center time! For language arts, they can read books or follow along with books read to them and play games like Sight Word Bingo to help build their reading vocabulary. For math, they can play games that help them practice math facts, test their memory, and build a deeper understanding of number relationships.
We promote peaceful conflict resolution, trustful relationships, and respect for individual spiritual growth.