Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Happy Holidays!

Winter Wonderland: Thank you to all of our parent volunteers for helping to make Winter Wonderland such a success! Also, thank you to Ms. Pavilcek and Mrs. Hogan from the Burlington Science Center for bringing in some winter animals and snow experiments! We all had such a wonderful morning crafting, decorating, and experimenting, and couldn’t have done it without the extra help!

Winter Wonderland!

Mystery Readers!


Visiting the Green Screen in the Computer Lab!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

We are Waddling into a Winter Wonderland!

Winter Wonderland: A reminder that our First Grade Winter Wonderland is on Monday. Students are invited to bring in a winter snack to enjoy during our event!
Winter Concert
We had a great time performing at our winter concert for all of our families. A BIG thank you to Mrs. Agati, Ms. Berger, and Ms. DeMartinis who worked tirelessly to put this event together for us.  We hope we were able to put you in the holiday spirit!

Mystery Readers
We were SO excited for our Mystery Readers this week! Melody's grandmother and Mr. Lyons visited to read us special stories!

Door Decorating!
Pine Glen is holding its first ever winter door decorating contest! First graders began by brainstorming various winter themes for our door. We then looked at some samples to get more ideas. We decided to go with a penguin theme! We looked at a few different ways we could make a penguin.  We discussed that just like we all look different, our penguins should look different too. Everyone in our class set out to make a unique penguin.  Once our penguins were complete, we brainstormed what to put around them, what words to put up and how to show whose penguin was whose. Take a look at our finished product below! Whether we win or not, we are really proud of our creativity and finished product! Students in grades K-5 will vote on Monday!

Persuading our Teachers!
We have some BIG news… first grade has officially persuaded all teachers to let students choose their own lunch seats!! This morning, all first grade classes got together and some students were chosen to read their letters aloud. The first grade teachers stood across the room from all of the students on the rug.  If teachers heard a very STRONG point and felt persuaded to change their minds, they took a step forward toward the rug. Some examples of great arguments were that they could meet new friends, they could learn to be responsible, it would make them happy (and who doesn’t want happiness?), and they will make non-tempting seat choices. In the end, all of the first grade teachers had made their way across the room.. they were persuaded!! Next, we practiced what it would look like when choosing a seat. We talked about making sure everyone is included and staying in one seat the entire lunch. We are so excited to choose our own seats!!

Talking Tidbits:
-Our Winter Concert!
-Author of the Month, Jan Brett
-Publishing our persuasive writing
-Decorating our classroom door!
-More Mystery Readers!
-Kind Kids Club
-Choosing our own seats at lunch!

Friday, December 11, 2015

The Power of Persuasion

Winter Concert Reminder!
The 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Grade concert is on Friday, December 18th at 9:00am. Students should wear a dressy outfit!

Winter Wonderland
A big thank you to our room parents, volunteers, and those of you who have donated/are donating items for our Winter Wonderland event. I know there is so much going on this month and I truly appreciate the help during this busy time!

Persuasive Writing!
First graders learned all about the power of persuasion this week! We started off with an outdoor activity. All first graders had to choose whether they thought cats or dogs made a better pet. They lined up with their groups and tried to persuade the others to take a step in their direction with some REALLY important reasons that supported their choice.

Then we came back inside and read a few examples of persuasive writing, including some persuasive books written by first graders! Next, we talked about features of persuasive writing. We learned persuasive writing has a topic sentence that supports your opinion, facts and examples to support your opinion, and a closing statement.

First graders were then given their persuasive topic - lunch seats! Students had to choose whether they wanted to be able to choose their own spots or if they liked sitting in assigned seats. We brainstormed reasons for both sides of the argument, and decided which reasons were fair and which reasons were very strong. We rated our reasons a scale of 1-4. The 4 arguments were the strongest! First graders worked hard on writing a topic sentence and many strong reasons. Next week we will work on writing an ending that will be sure to leave an impression on our reader to change their mind. We will work on publishing these pieces next week!

Hour of Code
We were very fortunate to have Mrs. Ardizzoni, our technology specialist, assist us in participating in the Hour of Code. We learned how to code using a symbols based interactive iPad app. By listing a series of steps in the correct order, we were able to make our robot characters move. We had a blast learning to code!

Talking Tidbits:
-What is Persuasive Writing?
-Preparing for the holiday concert in music
-Persuasive writing that we have read like “Should we squash bugs?”
-Our persuasive pieces about lunch seats
-Our Mystery Readers this week!
-Hour of Code iPad App: Lightbot Code Hour by LightBot, Inc.
-Solving addition and subtraction word problems

Getting Persuasive! What makes a better pet-- Cat or Dog?

 Our First Mystery Readers: Mrs. B's sister Michelle and their nephew, 
James reading his FAVORITE story, Little Blue Truck!

Our second Mystery Reader, Emma who visited from 5th grade read us Moosletoe! 

Hour of Code!

lightbot from
Lightbot Code Hour App by LightBot Inc

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Our Week Mattered!

This week was short, but we made it count! Be sure to talk with your first grader about their week and ask them why this week "mattered."

Conferences: It was great to meet with our families at conferences on Thursday! I am really proud of all of the hard work our first graders have done so far this year and look forward to all they will accomplish throughout the rest of the year. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns as our year progresses.  As always-- thanks for your continued help in supporting your child’s learning.  

Winter Wonderland Reminder First Grade will have a Winter Wonderland on December 21st at 9:00am. Your child is invited to bring a special nut-free snack on this day. If you would like to volunteer for our special event please let me know by Monday!

Mystery Readers!A notice was sent home today about having Mystery Readers come in to read to our class. If you or a family member is interested in participating, please let me know by sending back the attached form.

Matter! This week we have been very busy in science! We learned all about Matter. When we researched matter, students took notes in a research notebook.  We learned that matter is anything that takes up space and that there are three states of matter: solids, liquids and gases. We talked about the difference between each. On Wednesday, all first graders went on a “Matter Hunt” to find as many solids, liquids, and gases in our first grade classrooms. We found LOTS of solids, some liquids, and very few gases.  First graders were challenged to find some more solids, liquids, and gases at home!

On Friday the first grade classes conducted some matter experiments! Be sure to ask your first grader about the experiments and what they learned. Here is a list of all of the experiments we did!

  1. Matter Mystery Bag: We used our five senses to explore the properties of objects and guess what is inside the bag.
  2. Classifying Matter: We sorted objects by shape, color, size, texture, and other properties.
  3. Weighing Matter with Blocks: We explored mass-- which we learned is how much matter an object has.  We measured how many blocks it would take to balance the scale with a variety of objects.
  4. Balloon Experiment: We used balloons filled with  ice, water, and air and saw what happened when the balloons were popped.  
  5. Ice Cube Melting: We experimented with an ice cube and thought about how we could melt the ice cube faster. We also explored how matter can change its state.  
  6. Liquid Volume Experiment: We used 4 different containers of water and predicted which one has the most. We were VERY surprised with the result! Ask us what we learned from this!

After we completed our experiments, our first grade scientists chose their favorite experiment to write about! We learned that just like readers and mathematicians-- scientists write too!

Talking Tidbits
-Our ticket jar was full AGAIN!!! Every first grader earned a Hoot! card!
-Suffix s to make words plural
-Facts about matter!
-Our Matter Hunt!
-Matter Experimenting
-Holiday songs in music
-Square One Owls in Art!
-Using addition to solve subtraction

105 Bundled up at last week's Turkey Trot and Walkathon!