Thursday, August 24, 2017

Weekly News: August 28-September 1



News: 

We had a great second week of kindergarten! Thank you to our folder and prep parents for starting all of your hard work this week. 

This is our first week of electives. If your child is staying for electives, they will have lunch on the playground from 12:30-1:00. Electives are from 1:00-1:40 then they will be dismissed on the ramp from their elective teacher. If your child is not staying for an elective, but would still like to stay for lunch, they can join friends on the playground for lunch from 12:30-1:00 and will be dismissed on the ramp at 1:00 by a member of our yard duty staff. 

Save the Date for our Parent Workshop on Wednesday, September 13th from 6:00-7:00. We will meet in our classroom and go over all of our kindergarten standards/goals for the year, exactly what they mean, and strategies for how you can help your child with these goals at home. 

There is no school on Monday, September 4th due to the Labor Day holiday. Enjoy the time off with your families!

What Are We Learning This Week?:

Sight Words: I, like, my. 

Letters and sounds: l, k, y, x, and the long and short vowel sounds a, e, i, o, u, y (the vowel sounds e or i)

Letter Team: sh (like in "she" and "push") and er (like in "her" and "mother") - ask your child to tell you about Mr. er - he is one crazy driver!!!

Word Family: ip - like in dip, chip, rip, sip, tip, etc.

Reading: We will continue to learn that vowels make 2 sounds - a short sound and a long sound. Ask your child to sing you the vowel songs! We are reading a new class book this week titled, "My Five Senses". We will learn all about our five senses as we practice reading our sight words of the week. We will also introduce non-fiction and begin reading Scholastic News magazines each week. 

Writing: This week, we are learning how to choose a writing topic. We will learn that good writers write about what they know and what they love. We are continuing to use an uppercase at the beginning of a sentence, finger spaces between our words, and a period at the end. We are also learning to use our sight words in our sentences and to listen for the sounds in all unknown words using our sound chart.

Math: Last week, every student received a number counting and number writing goal. This week, we will discuss our shape goals. 
We will learn that kindergarten mathematicians can name shapes, draw shapes, build shapes, and identify the attributes of shapes. We will play shape games, build shapes with popsicle sticks and play-dough and practice shape attributes. When I ask "What is the attribute of a triangle?" I want to hear, "A triangle is a flat 2D shape that has 3 sides and 3 vertices." You can help at home by asking your child shape names and attributes! 

Leadership: We have been having so much fun discussing Growth Mindset and reading our new Class Promise together: 

#1: We are smart! 
#2: We can get it!
#3: We belong here! 
#4: We won't forget it!

This week, we read a silly book, "Giraffe's Can't Dance" and then we made a giant poster of all the things that we can't do YET. I am so proud of all of my students for having a growth mindset and telling me, "I can't count to 100... YET! But I'm going to keep trying!" What an awesome class of leaders! 

PLEASE SCROLL DOWN TO THE HOMEWORK POST TO SEE ALL OF THE HOMEWORK FOR THE WEEK.

Homework: August 28-September 1

As I said at Back to School Night, our Homework Program in Kindergarten is a little different. Instead of giving out packets, I just ask that you work with your child at home at their level on what they need. I want to load you with lots of ideas and tips each week. Nothing needs to be turned in (except for our once a month Turn-In Projects). Please take a moment to read each section of homework. I understand this can be very overwhelming. Please feel free to email me if you have any questions or concerns.


Flashcards: Please make flashcards for our sight words (I, like, my), letters/sounds of the week (l, k, y, x, long and short vowels a, e, i, o, u, y) our letter teams of the week (sh and er) and our word family (ip - tip, lip, chip, etc.) Study these flashcards every day. Have your child read the word, spell the word, read the word. I would suggest making a little flashcard box that you can add to throughout the year and reading through those flashcards a few times a day. Make a game of it. Put the sight word CD on and sing and dance to the sight words. We will have a Reading Test on these sight words, letters and letter sounds, and letter teams each Friday. We will also have a Sentence Test on our sight words every Friday. A sentence test means we will be asking your child to write a sentence that we give them using our sight words of the week. We will not only be looking for correct spelling of our sight words, but also for an uppercase at the beginning, spaces between words, a proper punctuation at the end. An example of a sentence is, "We can see a man." It may be a good idea to have a practice Sentence Test with your child on Thursday night. 


Phonemic Awareness: We have been playing a few phonemic awareness games in class every morning that I'd like for you to also try at home. The beginning sound game: I give the students a word (dog), and have them shout out the first sound they hear (D-D-D!). The blending game: I give the students three sounds very slowly (SSSSS-UUUU-NNNN) and they shout out the word it makes (SUN!). The rhyming game: we are trying to make real-word rhymes AND identify the part of the word that rhymes. I will say the word CAT and the students answer (BAT, RAT, FAT - the rhyming part is AT!) 


Reading: Reading at home is SO IMPORTANT! In a few short weeks, your child will be bringing home little books that we have been reading in class to read at home for YOU! Reading to your child is also important. Children need to hear frequent fluent reading to become a reader themselves. This week, we are learning Parts of a Book - when reading with your child, have them point out the front cover, back cover, spine, title, author, illustrator, and title page. Part of reading homework is also Smarty Ants. Have your child play Smarty Ants for 10-15 minutes every day on your computer or tablet. A paper was sent home last week with log-in instructions. You can also find the link on the right side tab of our website. Our class username is: BESS and our password is: READ.


Writing:  Our writing homework will change throughout the year and may look different for each student since each student may be at a different place developmentally. This week, we are focusing hard on name writing. A sheet will come home later this week for your child to practice writing their name neatly in the lines and using an uppercase only at the beginning. Feel free to make many copies of this sheet for extra practice, or stick it in a page protector and have your child use an Expo marker to write so that it can be erased and used over and over again. Also practice writing your ABC's both uppercase and lowercase. Take a look at the ABC Writing Assessment that came home last week so you can see what your child needs to practice. You can also practice writing your sight words of the week in a short sentence. We are learning to start our letters at the TOP! 


Math: Practice counting 1-30 or higher. Make number flashcards and have your child identify numbers out of order. Practice number writing - take a look at your child's number writing assessment that came home last week so you can see what needs to be practiced! Practice drawing shapes, identifying shapes, or even creating shapes out of play-dough and sticks. Ask your child to name different attributes of shapes. For example, "What shape has three sides?" or "How many vertices does a rectangle have?" Your child will also be bringing home "Daily Math" practice pages that we do every morning in class. Please take a moment to go over these practice pages to see if there is anything specific your child needs to work on. Math homework every week also includes Dreambox. Have your child play Dreambox on your computer or tablet for 10-15 minutes every day. A paper was sent home last week with log-in instructions. You can also find the link on the right side tab of our website. Our school code is X2we/inlandlcs


QR Codes: Our class uses a LOT of QR codes in our learning.  Mrs. Stanley has created many QR code activities for all of our kindergarten students to scan and work on at home. Each week, these will be uploaded on ParentSquare. Please print these pages for your child to work on at home each week. One great idea is to put these pages in sheet protectors and add these pages into a binder for your child to refer to all year long. 


Turn-In Homework:  None this week :)

Friday, August 18, 2017

Weekly News: August 21-25


What a great first full week of school! I am the luckiest teacher to have such a great group of students with me and I am excited about our year together. We are having so much fun getting to know one another and adjusting to this crazy little thing called kindergarten :) 

There is always a LOT of information at the beginning of the year. Thank you so much for taking the time to read through our entire post. 

It was wonderful meeting so many of our parents at Back to School Night!  It is so nice to see we have an enthusiastic and very supportive group of parents!  This year will be amazing!! Remember that if you were unable to make Back to School Night, I uploaded our slideshow to ParentSquare so that you do not miss the important information that was discussed. 

Thank you to the parents that signed up to help us out in the morning with Daily Folders. If you are a Daily Folder helper, please grab our Folder Basket down at the tables on the playground and walk it up to class for us! Here are Daily Folder Parents: 

Mondays: Mrs. Chronopoulos
Tuesdays: Mrs. Raef
Wednesdays: 
Thursdays: 
Fridays:

As you can see, we still need help on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday mornings. If you are able to help, please sign up on ParentSquare. We are also in need of two more helpers for our Fun Friday Centers. These volunteers will start sometime in mid September. 

At Back to School Night, I sent home a Sight Word CD with most of our sight word songs. This is a fun way to learn our sight words and reinforce letter identification too. Have your child point to each letter on their flashcards as they sing the letter name and have fun singing! 

You should have also received a note showing you how to download the QR CODE app onto your phone or tablet. Your children will have the opportunity to scan QR codes in the classroom and watch great videos to help with reading, phonemic awareness, penmanship, and math. Every week, some of the papers we are working on in class will come home. Have your child scan those QR codes again and again for practice! They love the videos!  Mrs. Stanley will also post these (AND MORE!) QR Code practice activity pages on Parent Square so you can download them.  This is a great way to reinforce/practice at home!

On Friday your child took his/her first spelling sentence assessment.  Please take some time to go over the spelling sentence with your student and reinforce any errors your child may have made.  We will have a spelling sentence assessment each Friday that will include our current and often previous spelling words.  We are looking for correct spelling, capitalization, and punctuation as well as appropriate spacing between words.  We understand this will take time, but with reinforcement and practice they will all achieve this standard.  Your students are off to a great start!!

On Friday your child also took his/her first sight word/letter/letter team reading assessment.  Please take some time to also go over this assessment with your child.  We will have this assessment each Friday and it will include current as well as past words, letters, and letter teams.  These quick weekly assessments are a great way to check in on your student’s progress and to monitor where support may be needed.  Thank you so much for your support!!


On Friday your child also came home with their Daily Math paper. On Friday we use the Daily Math as a quick “check in” assessment for the math standards covered during the week.  On Fridays you will see a score recorded on this paper indicating how many problems your child missed on the assessment.  During the week we work together to complete the problems and reinforce these standards with hands on activities during our math rounds.  On Fridays your child will have the opportunity to complete this activity on their own to demonstrate mastery or needed support of a standard.  Again, please take a few minutes to go over any missed problems.  Thank you!!

Save the Date for our Parent Workshop on Wednesday, September 13th from 6:00-7:00. We will meet in our classroom and go over all of our kindergarten standards/goals for the year, exactly what they mean, and strategies for how you can help your child with these goals at home. 

There is no school on Monday, September 4th due to the Labor Day holiday. Enjoy the time off with your families!


What Are We Learning This Week?:

Sight Words: is, the, me, or.

Letters:i, t, h, m, o, r, p

Letter Team: th (we are learning that TH has two different sounds - a hard sound, like in MOTHER and THE, and a soft sound, like in THUMB and WITH). 

Word Family: ap (cap, tap, rap, etc.)

Reading: We are learning the vowels! Ask your child about our special vowel song and what sounds the vowels can make! We are learning that each vowel can make 2 sounds - short and long. We are also learning the parts of a book, including title, author, illustrator, and title page. You can help at home by having your child point to each part of the book before you read. We are reading a new class book this week titled, "More Shapes". We will learn various shapes and colors as we practice reading our sight words of the week. Students will continue one-to-one matching, and we will learn a few more reading strategies, including, "Get your mouth ready for the first sound", "Know the Letter Sounds" and "Stretch out the sounds”.

Writing: We are learning that writing is just telling on paper. Some of us are "telling" using pictures and labels. Some of us are already starting to tell with words and sentences. No matter where we are at, we are ALL learning that our ABC Sound Chart helps us to identify sounds/letters in words. (You will also find the ABC Sound Chart on your child's Take Home Folder!!) This week, we are also practicing writing our name with an uppercase ONLY at the beginning. Please reinforce this at home.

Math: We will practice number identification, number writing, days of the week, months of the year, and shapes. This week, every student received their very first "Math Goal". Some of our goals are "I can write my numbers to 10" and some of us are working on "I can count to 30". We will also focus on identifying what number comes next without having to go back to start counting at 1. In class, we call it "Popcorn Counting". For example, if I ask a student to count on from the number 7, I would like them to say "8, 9, 10" and the numbers just pop out of our brain like popcorn. We sing a song about this called: Popcorn Count ....

Popcorn Count (Popcorn Count)
It’s what it’s all about! (It’s what it’s all about!)
It helps us add up numbers (It helps us add up numbers)
Really Quick!
Lickety Split!


Leadership: The first few weeks of school, we really talked about having a growth mindset and how to help our brain grow, even when something is really hard. We read several books about how mistakes help you grow and how to NOT give up! We even wrote a Class Promise together that we will read every morning: 

Fact 1: We are smart! 
Fact 2: We can get it!
Fact 3: We belong here! 
And 4: We won't forget it!


PLEASE SCROLL DOWN TO READ THE ENTIRE HOMEWORK POST BELOW!!!! 

Homework Tips: August 21-24

As I said at Back to School Night, our Homework Program in Kindergarten is a little different. Instead of giving out packets, I just ask that you work with your child at home at their level on what they need. I want to load you with lots of ideas and tips each week. Nothing needs to be turned in (except for our once a month Turn-In Projects). Please take a moment to read each section of homework. I understand this can be very overwhelming. Please feel free to email me if you have any questions or concerns.


Flashcards: Please make flashcards for our sight words (is, the, me, or), letters of the week (i, t, h, m, o, r, p) our letter team of the week (th) and our word family (ap - cap, tap, rap, etc.) Study these flashcards every day. Have your child read the word, spell the word, read the word. I would suggest making a little flashcard box that you can add to throughout the year and reading through those flashcards a few times a day. Make a game of it. Put the sight word CD on and sing and dance to the sight words. We will have a Reading Test on these sight words, letters and letter sounds, and letter teams each Friday. We will also have a Sentence Test on our sight words every Friday. A sentence test means we will be asking your child to write a sentence that we give them using our sight words of the week. We will not only be looking for correct spelling of our sight words, but also for an uppercase at the beginning, spaces between words, a proper punctuation at the end. An example of a sentence is, "We can see a man." It may be a good idea to have a practice Sentence Test with your child on Thursday night. 


Phonemic Awareness: Please work with your child on the following Phonemic Awareness skills: rhyming, blending, segmenting, syllables, beginning/middle/ending sounds, and adding, changing and deleting sounds in words.  Please see our Phonemic Awareness tab for ideas and tips. 


Reading: Reading at home is SO IMPORTANT! In a few short weeks, your child will be bringing home little books that we have been reading in class to read at home for YOU! Reading to your child is also important. Children need to hear frequent fluent reading to become a reader themselves. This week, we are learning Parts of a Book - when reading with your child, have them point out the front cover, back cover, spine, title, author, illustrator, and title page. Part of reading homework is also Smarty Ants. Have your child play Smarty Ants for 10-15 minutes every day on your computer or tablet. A paper was sent home last week with log-in instructions. You can also find the link on the right side tab of our website. Our class username is: BESS and our password is: READ.


Writing: Our writing homework will change throughout the year and may look different for each student since each student may be at a different place developmentally. I would like all students to practice writing your name with an uppercase only at the beginning. Practice writing your ABC's both uppercase and lowercase. Take a look at the ABC Writing Assessment that came home last week so you can see what your child needs to practice. You can also practice writing your sight words of the week in a short sentence. We are learning to start our letters at the TOP! 


Math: Practice counting 1-30 or higher. Make number flashcards and have your child identify numbers out of order. Practice number writing - take a look at your child's number writing assessment that came home last week so you can see what needs to be practiced! Practice drawing shapes, identifying shapes, or even creating shapes out of play-dough and sticks. Ask your child to name different attributes of shapes. For example, "What shape has three sides?" or "How many vertices does a rectangle have?" Your child will also be bringing home "Daily Math" practice pages that we do every morning in class. Please take a moment to go over these practice pages to see if there is anything specific your child needs to work on. Math homework every week also includes Dreambox. Have your child play Dreambox on your computer or tablet for 10-15 minutes every day. A paper was sent home last week with log-in instructions. You can also find the link on the right side tab of our website. Our school code is X2we/inlandlcs


QR Codes: Our class uses a LOT of QR codes in our learning.  Mrs. Stanley has created many QR code activities for all of our kindergarten students to scan and work on at home. Each week, these will be uploaded on ParentSquare. Please print these pages for your child to work on at home each week. One great idea is to put these pages in sheet protectors and add these pages into a binder for your child to refer to all year long. 


Turn-In Homework:  None this week :)

Thursday, August 10, 2017

First Weekly News!



We had a great first two days of school! It has been so nice to meet all of you and your awesome kiddos! I have a wonderful group of students and I am truly looking forward to a fantastic school year! 

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Thank you for ALL of your generous donations! Don't forget to attend our Back to School Night on Tuesday, August 15th. There will be two sessions - one at 5:30 and one at 6:00. Please attend one of these sessions to hear more about our kindergarten program. Please note that because we go over so much information, this is a parent only event. We will also have sign-ups for room parent and volunteering in the classroom. Hope to see you there!

Following our Back to School Night, I will start sending home our Take-Home Folders this week (you will see this come home Wednesday). Please check this folder every day, removing any papers to stay at home, and sending it back to school every day.

We are excited for our first full week of school - we will be learning sight words, reading books, learning math, writing in our journals, and even starting homework! There was a special note sent home on Friday about our first Kindergarten Homework Project: A Book Box. You may work on this together as a family to create a special place to keep all of your little books that you will bring home throughout the year. Students will bring this book box to school to share any day this week, then take it back home. In Kindergarten, we will have a few turn-in projects like this throughout the year. We will also have weekly homework for reading, writing, and math. We will go over our entire Kindergarten Homework Program in detail at Back to School night. 


What Are We Learning This Week?:

Sight Words: WE, CAN, SEE, A.

Letter Team: EE (like in SEE and BEE).

Reading: We are reading many books about beginning school! We are reading books about our shapes and catching our sight words as we read. This year, we are learning many reading strategies to become better readers. This week, we will focus on: Make Your Finger Match the Word, Look at the Pictures, and Retell What You Just Read.

Writing: We are learning to neatly write the alphabet using correct letter formation. This week we are learning that a sentence starts with an uppercase letter and ends with a period. We are working on putting finger spaces in between our words. We are learning that our ABC Sound Chart helps us to identify sounds/letters in words. (You will also find the ABC Sound Chart on your child's Take Home Folder!!)

Math: We are learning to identify, order, write, and count numbers to 30, identify and name shapes and sort them by different attributes.  We are also learning songs for the days of the week and months of the year.  Each day, your child will be working on a “Daily Math” practice page in class. These pages will be sent home each day for you to review with your child. Please take a moment to go over these pages with your child, reviewing any missed problems they may have. 

Leadership: At ILCS this year, we are ROARING. The acronym ROAR stands for Respect self, others, and property, Own your actions, Act safely, and Rise to servant leadership.  For the next several weeks, we will be discussing the first R in class - RESPECT. We will talk about what it means to respect, as well as what it looks like. Our goal is to have students take ownership of their own behavior as we all strive to be leaders in our classroom and school.