Sunday, November 27, 2011

OMG! December Already...

This week ends November and begins December and I cannot believe we are already this far into the year.  The amazing thing is we have only had school approximately 30 days because of the unique schedule (this shows just how important being at school is every day).  I am pleased with how the children are working hard and learning a lot too.  I sure hope you have seen this at home.  In addition, please continue to work on letter sounds, sight words, and numbers at home daily.  The progress made would not be possible without your help at home as I only have them 2 or 3 days a week.  In addition, it is important for your child to be at school.  If they are ill and have to miss school please contact me and I can let you know what your child has missed.  It is helpful for you to review these things with your child.  In addition, if you another child in the school I am able to send home work with them.

This week we will be working on the letter Ii and its sound of /i/ as in igloo, insect, ink, etc.  This sound can be easily confused with the short e sound as in elephant, elevator, escalator, etc.  We will be working on this particular sound and reading a series of new words with short i and a.  This will allow us to have some new words to work with and to blend.  In addition, we will be working with new sight words or "popcorn words."  This week the words are for and he.  We will continue to work with segmentation and begin bridging this into our writing.  The children will begin to develop an understanding of when you are unsure of how to spell a word, you can segment the word to hear all the sounds.  Currently, it is developmentally appropriate for children to only hear the first and/or last sound of a word.  Some children may be able to hear the middle sound too, but be aware this is the last sound children hear.

In math, we will conclude our work with 2-dimensional shapes by learning about the hexagon (six sides).  We will also review all the shapes.  We are working with some children on a deeper understanding of 2-dimensional shapes by learning their attributes and why the shapes are this way (the difference between a square and a rectangle).  Research has shown us it is important to extend their thinking and develop a deeper understanding of a specific items (this means we just do not want them to identify the shape, we ask questions and delve into their thinking).

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 20, 2011


This week we only have school on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.  We will be continuing our work from last week and having a little Thanksgiving fun on Tuesday and Wednesday!  If you are traveling I hope you have a safe trip.  I also hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving.  I look forward to hearing the children talk about what they did over their mini break.  I would love for your child to draw a picture of what they did on Thanksgiving and try to write a sentence (they can bring it to school when they return for me to check and for them to share).

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Buddy Fun...

Today we met with our 3rd grade buddies from Mrs. Ryba's classroom and worked together on kindness.  We learned this week is World Kindness Week and discussed ways to be kind to one another.  We came up with the ideas of helping friends pick up things, holding the door for friends and adults, saying nice things, giving hugs to our friends, smiling, telling each other nice things, and many more.  Each buddy group worked together to trace their hands and write a way to be kind.  We then took the hands and placed them in a circle to make a kindness wreath for the holidays (we made two so one could hang in Mrs. Ryba's room and one could hang in our classroom...we mixed up the hands so each room has some kindergarteners and third graders).  We made the wreath so we could be reminded of many ways to be kind to one another.  It was wonderful to see the many children working together and the 3rd graders helping the kindergarteners with their writing, cutting, and tracing.  Our 3rd grade buddies are such a kind group of children.  The children are already looking forward to seeing them in December, plus they love seeing them in the hallways at school :)


Sunday, November 13, 2011

What is Going On...

We have a great deal of learning taking place in the next week and half before Thanksgiving! This week will begin by completing our work with the letter Pp. Please remember to encourage your child to make a short quick /p/ sound. We want to make sure that the children are not saying /puh/, as this will make it more
challenging when children begin to blend words together. After we complete our unit on the letter Pp, we are going to move on to the letter Cc. We will be working with the children on how to produce a hard Cc sound. On some of their papers, you may notice this written like /k/. The hard Cc sound is comparable to our Kk sound (candy, cup, cat, color). Throughout the next week and half, we will also continue to work with the sight words/popcorn words: like, we, and my.

Please continue to practice all letters, letter sounds, and sight words at home. Your continued support and work with your children at home has become very evident in the classroom. We greatly appreciate all of your extra time and effort.

Ideas for Letter/Sound Practice at Home:
1- Have students identify letter names on flashcards.
2- Have students go on a letter hunt in your home to find specific letters.
3- Have students identify letter sounds on flashcards.
4- Have students go on a sound hunt in your home to find specific items that start with a specific sound (a, m, t, s, p, c).
5- Have students begin to practice blending sounds into words. Place three letter cards in front of your child (with a vowel in the middle) and have your child begin to blend the word. Please remember, these do not have to be real words...they can be nonsense/make believe words as well!

In math, we will be continuing our introduction to 2-dimensional shapes. This week, we will review our previously learned shapes (circles and squares) and introduce the students to triangles and rectangles. Children will continue to practice identifying these shapes, as well as compare and contrast these shapes.
Also in math, we will be continuing to count to 40. Remember, students are required to count to 50 by the end of second quarter and 100 by the end of the year!

Please remember conferences are this week and next week. Purple confirmation sheets were sent home last week with report cards. Please return your confirmation forms so we can confirm your appointment. If you are unable to make the scheduled time, please let us know a convenient number or email address to
contact you. Due to our limited number of conference slots, we will need to have a phone conference if you are unavailable to attend. Please know, we worked very hard to accommodate all requests for conferences, but had to fill slots on a first come-first serve basis.

Next week (November 21st-23rd) is a short week and all students will have a Thanksgiving Fun Day! We are looking forward to this time with your children to celebrate Thanksgiving. There will be three 45-minute rotations for the children on Tuesday (B Day Students) or Wednesday (A Day Students). We have been studying Thanksgiving all month and working on having the students identify people and things they are thankful for! We are looking forward to showing you some of their Mayflower Pilgrim Patterns and their Thankful Turkeys!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Report Cards...

This past Friday concluded the 1st quarter.  We have completed all the required assessments and you will receive your child's report card at the conclusion of the week or beginning of next week.  One change has been made to our report card.  We are no longer using AP/NP to report grades.  The district has made a decision to use Y/N to report grades as yes or no.  When you receive your child's report card you can look at the required skill and then next to the skill will be either a Y or N.  If your child receives a Y, this would mean your child can do the skill as listed without any assistance.  If your child receives an N, this would mean your child cannot complete the skill as listed.  Your child may have progressed throughout the quarter; however, they may still have not yet met the required skill.  For example, all children need to be able to identify 13 uppercase letters and 13 lowercase letters.  Your child may have progressed, but if they are unable to identify 13 letters, then they would receive an N.

If you have any questions please feel free to call or email.  I will also be taking time at conferences to review the report card with you.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Lots of Learning...

This week is a short week for children.  We do not have school on Tuesday and Friday of this week.  On Tuesday teachers have Professional Development and on Friday it is Veteran's Day.  In addition, Tuesday is election day and I hope everyone will go out and vote.  West Clermont has an operating levy on the ballot (Issue 12).  We would love to have your support as it will allow us to bring back transportation and other vital programs to the schools.

In the classroom we will be working on the letter Pp.  This letter has a short quick sound and says /p/.  When you practice this sound try not to let your child say /puh/ (this would mean your child is producing two sounds rather than one).  This is important when children try to blend words together.  We will also be working on new sight words or popcorn words (like, we, my).  Please continue to practice all the letter sounds we have learned.  You can write the letters on a card and have your child say the sounds.  In addition, you can place three letters out with a vowel in the middle and have your child begin to blend the word.  These words can be real or make believe.  It is okay for your child to read a make believe word because the purpose is to practice blending.

In math, we are beginning our geometry unit.  Children will be introduced to 2-dimensional shapes.  This week we will be studying circles and squares.  Children will work on comparing and contrasting these shapes.  We are also working on counting to 40.  At the conclusion of the 2nd quarter all children are required to count to 50 and by the end of the year to 100.  These next few weeks for our table work at the beginning of the day will be working on number writing.  Our goal is to have all children counting to 100 as quickly as possible.

Have a great week!

Thursday, November 3, 2011


Parent-Teacher Conferences are quickly approaching.  The conferences will be held on November 15, November 18, and November 21.  You will need to send in all purple forms if you wish to schedule a conference. I only have a limited number of available times; therefore, all forms need to be turned in by November 4.  If you have not sent in a form and you can email me your request.  I will try and honor your first choice, but it may be necessary to have your second choice. In addition, there was an error on the form. On Monday, November 21, the times are from 4-7:30. If you have any questions please let me know. I look forward to talking with many of you about your child's progress.