Even though the SSDA has decided first graders are trained and ready for Phonics Duty, we are always on the hunt for new letter patterns. They recently received a letter challenge to turn the word JUNK into GOLD while studying vowel and ending blends. First graders solved clues like, “Change the first letter of ‘junk’ to make a type of bed with a ladder.” During this challenge, they studied words with ending blends like unk, and, old, and ald. First graders are going to be on the hunt for these types of endings in their books so they can blend the sounds together smoothly.
As we shared in last week’s Bulletin, first graders were working towards their goal of reading 200 pages per class in the course of work. Their reward for their hard work, which was decided upon by the students, was a board game afternoon, and we are happy to announce that all three first grade classes reached their goal! Students were invited to bring in a board game from home or play a game from the classroom. Favorites were CandyLand, Monopoly, Checkers, Twister, and Chutes & Ladders. Everyone enjoyed the experience, which was even more special because it was not just a gift but an earned activity through their hard work!
In writing, first graders have been learning how to use opinion and persuasive writing to convince a reader. They began working on forming opinions and creating strong reasons in debates like which is better: pizza or tacos? indoor or outdoor recess? winter or summer? First graders learned that first, you must have a strong hook to get your reader interested in your topic. Next you share your opinion, and finally you create many reasons to convince your reader. Students have learned that it is important to have clear reasons, many examples, and even a counter argument to make your opinion writing strong. They decided to put their skills to the test and wrote a letter to Ms. Geringer- Dunn, attempting to convince her that if each class could read 200 pages over the course of several independent reading times, they should earn a games afternoon! Students are excited and motivated to meet this challenge.
On an unrelated note, please send your child into school with a paper towel roll by 1/22 for a new math project: The Number Scroll Project! We will be working on Number Scrolls aiming to count all the way up to 1,000 by the end of the school year. The scrolls will be stored in the paper towel roll you provide. Thank you!
First graders hit the ground running in 2020! They began a math unit on place value, focusing on the tens and ones places. Although this is a difficult concept, they are building understanding through several games. Using base-ten blocks, students have been playing games where they actually trade ten-unit cubes for a long, or ten cubes fused together. They also played guessing games where they used their knowledge of place value to guess a mystery number. In a fun, engaging atmosphere, students built some serious understanding of tens units by creating groups of ten.