Friday, March 27, 2009


In math we have been learning about area and measuring it in square units this week in math. Students have begun working with pentominoes and manipulating the 12 different pieces to complete puzzles and explore this measurement concept.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Castle Coin Party

On Friday we had our third castle coin celebration. This time we decided to have a "lights out" and "shoes off" day. I borrowed some small lamps and we turned off the overhead lights like we do for Read Aloud. It created a nice relaxing atmosphere for learning. We also got even more relaxed by taking our shoes off.

Friday, March 20, 2009


We made oobleck in class after we read the book by Dr. Seuss: Bartholomew and the Oobleck. It was about a king who wanted a different type of weather to come down from the sky. Oobleck came down and got stuck on everything. When the students first saw the oobleck in class, they thought it would be a liquid, but then they were surprised when they touched it and it seemed like a solid. We debated about which form of matter it really was. It is actually neither a solid or liquid but has properties from both stages of matter. Formally it is known as a non-Newtonian subtance. This means that when a small amount of force is used, it acts like a liquid, but when more force is applied, it acts like a solid.

Oobleck Recipe

2 cups of corn starch, 3 drops of green food coloring, enough water to make a thick mixture (about the texture of pancake batter) I usually measure equal amounts of water and corn starch, but mix water in slowly.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A Trip to the Bank

On Thursday our class, along with Mrs. Reeves' class, went to Fifth Third bank as part of our money project. Students had fun learning about what happens there, and took a tour behind the scenes. They got to see the safety deposit boxes and the vault. It was a lot smaller than I expected. Students were able to get some of their questions answered that we had generated in phase one. They made observations and counted various items. They also completed rubbings and made observational drawing and diagrams.

Friday, March 13, 2009


Dear Parents,
Report cards are coming home today. Please remember that we are doing more challenging work now and have moved on to second grade standards in many areas. I am pleased with the students' performances this term. If you have any questions please let me know. You will need to sign and return the envelope although you may keep the actual report card.

Thank you to everyone who attended last night at the music recital. I thought the children did a lovely job. We will be beginning our study of insects in another month or so when the weather changes. Next week we will be taking a field trip to a bank as part of our money project.

We are running low on tissues and baby/disinfectant wipes. If you can send any in we would appreciate it. Thank you!

Parent volunteers: I have not sent home a new calendar, but it appears as though my regular readers are still coming in every week. Please continue to follow the schedule you typically come in on each month. I will be needing a couple extra volunteers next Friday afternoon from 2:15-3:15 if you are available. We will be doing a messy science activity that is always a lot of fun.

Next week: Tuesday is a PBA day with early dismissal, Wednesday I am out all day for a meeting, Thursday is our field trip, and Friday is the messy science activity. It should be a very full week!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Wizard of Oz

We are finishing up reading the story of the Wonderful Wizard of Oz and watched the movie this week in class. The children noticed many differences and similarities. Did you know that Dorothy's shoes in the book are actually silver and not red? The movie also left out a lot of the book too, like the complete story of the flying monkeys, the china dolls, and the hammerheads.

today the students wrote about their noticings in Writing Workshop. I was pleased with their comparisons between the book and the movie.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Lunch with the Teacher

Today table three had lunch with me as a reward for doing the right thing. Each table is working towards ten points in order to eat lunch in the classroom. Table three was the first to get their ten points. Points are earned by making sure your table area is cleaned up on time, by not having anyone at your table be counted all day, and at other random times I catch them being good.


Monday, March 09, 2009

Indianapolis Opera

The Indianapolis Opera came and performed "Fumbelina" for the first graders today. It was a retelling of the classic Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale "Thumbelina". Students thought it was funny, and enjoyed listening to the music. Some thought that the singing was very loud. They were also very interested in the costumes and set designs.

Thank you to Mrs. Tidrow our music teacher for arranging this unique experience for us.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Coin Rubbings

To go along with our money project, we did an activity suggested by Mrs. Simmons the art teacher. Students created their own coins using foil and paper. Everyone made a template of a face either as a profile or looking straight at you. They cut it out and added layers of card stock or string to the paper to give it thickness. When they placed the foil over the template and rubbed, all of the edges came through, and you could see lots of details just like on a regular coin. They also added designs and decorations to the front using an etching technique. I was very pleased with their efforts and impressed with the detail they put forth on this activity. I know they enjoyed working with their own coin designs.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Dr. Seuss

Today we celebrated Dr. Seuss' birthday. We read one of my favorite stories, The Sneetches, and I was pleased that the children noticed the similarities between this book and the black history that we have been learning about.

The students completed a response sheet on a Seuss book of their choosing. We also did a crossword puzzle based on many of his books that proved to be just right in challenging the children. We read some of his tongue twisters for Read Aloud today, and the watched a video at the end of day about Green Eggs and Ham, The Sneetches, and on the tongue twisters. I believe the students also were able to choose green eggs and ham for lunch today.

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