Starting to Get into a First Grade Routine . . .

our-class-will-have-an-entire-classroom-set-of-ipads-this-year-ymwcar-clipartYour first grader has surely told you the news – WE GOT OUR IPADS THIS WEEK – right?!?! I sure hope so!  🙂  There was very much excitement surrounding the new arrival in our classroom and we did many great learning tasks with our new piece of technology.  In addition, we really did begin the first steps of getting into a routine in our classroom   Trust me, we still have much time until we establish our routines more firmly, but are getting there a bit at a time.  Thanks for visiting our blog this week.  Enjoy learning about a few things happening during your first grader’s days at school.  WARNING: There are many, many photos in this blog!  (Have fun looking them over and smiling at our hard work!)

Table of Contents:

  • Conversation Starters
  • Portraits – Warhol Style
  • Teaching about Turtles
  • iPads!
  • Taking Inventory
  • A Smile for You!

Conversation Starters:

  • unknownYour read the book, Ollie the Stomper, many times this week.  Tell me about this book and tell me some of the things you did with the book as a class.  What might a reader read a book more than once?  (Families: We worked HARD by discovering ways to figure out tricky words in books and asked the following questions: Does it look right?  Does it sound right?  Does it make sense?)
  • screen-shot-2016-09-07-at-10-35-05-pmYou talked about another part of the Robinson Mindset this week: I focus my mind.  What “motion” did your class decide goes with it and what does it look like to focus your mind in the classroom, in the hallway, visiting other classrooms, on the playground and at specials?

Portraits – Warhol Style: Over the past week, your first grader learned a bit about the famous artist, Andy Warhol, and how his art could inspire self-portraits in our classroom.  We worked to notice features in our faces and transferred them onto papers.  Next, each child had the opportunity to color in four of his or her portraits to express something to others in the artwork.  There are A LOT of photos below . . . however, I assure you that looking at the incredible work will be well worth your time!

We started by talking about Andy Warhol and watching a short movie about his life and artwork.
We started by talking about Andy Warhol and watching a short movie about his life and artwork.
Next, we checked out some of his amazing art and discussed what we noticed and wondered.
Next, we checked out some of his amazing art and discussed what we noticed and wondered.
Finally, we got to work!
Finally, we got to work!

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Teaching about Turtles: During the first week of school, our class did a lot of observing and learning about turtles.  Specifically, we learned about OUR classroom turtle, Bradford.  We watched her (yes, HER!) walk, we noticed her in the aquarium, we read books about her and more!  We soon found out that our next door neighbors in Mrs. Bearden’s class were interested to learn about turtles because they might be interested in getting one for a class pet.  We began with a learning goal (check that out below), did a lot of research with books, created posters, and finally, presented our findings to our first grade neighbors.

This is the "official" goal we used to guide our research and discovery about turtles.
This is the “official” goal we used to guide our research and discovery about turtles.

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iPads: As you read earlier, we received our iPads this week.  Your first grader did many great things in kindergarten with iPads – so they are kind of experts already.  This week, we did some fun things such as: exploring what is ON our iPads, finding letters to create our names on our iPads, and took a learning walk to take photos on our iPads.  Of course, we will continue to learn with our new piece of technology throughout the first grade year.  Until the next time you hear about our learning and thinking with iPads, check out our photos below from our first day.

Before getting our iPads, we talked about ways we can think and learn from them. Look at all of this smart responses!
Before getting our iPads, we talked about ways we can think and learn from them. Look at all of this smart responses!

Taking Inventory:  During our math time, we read a story about a family who was terribly disorganized – EEK!  In the family, a boy named Nicholas decided to organize things in his house by taking inventory and counting things.  We decided that we would do the same thing with our classroom, to make sure we knew how much stuff we had in our room.  Boy!  This is a TOUGH job!  We are currently in the midst of this job, so it’s not finished yet.  Below you can see some of the strategies our first graders used to count objects and you can see some of our friends counting.  It will be interesting to see where this work goes!  Stay tuned to hear more about these amazing mathematicians!

Charlie and Ava worked to take inventory of inch tiles.
Charlie and Ava worked to take inventory of inch tiles.
Zach and Piper took inventory of our tape!
Zach and Piper took inventory of our tape!
Look at Connor taking inventory of our colored pencils!
Look at Connor taking inventory of our colored pencils!
Autymn and Abby took inventory of our small, counting blocks.
Autymn and Abby took inventory of our small, counting blocks.
Allyson took inventory of our magnetic letters.
Allyson took inventory of our magnetic letters.
Duncan recorded his thinking after taking inventory of our scissors.
Duncan recorded his thinking after taking inventory of our scissors.

A Smile for You!  This week, I HOPE to help you smile with a slideshow that includes each of our first graders with a favorite book from home. (These photos were taken a couple of weeks ago – I just hadn’t shared them with you YET!  Sorry!)  As you might imagine, I LOVE seeing first graders with books and they are all so happy in these photos.  Enjoy . . . and SMILE!  🙂

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