Thursday, October 31, 2013

October 31, 2013


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Today in First Grade

We didn't have as much time doing phonics today as usual because we were running a little late.  We had worked on a little unfinished math work, talked about the fun they had at the Halloween carnival last night, and I gave a lecture and demonstration about the importance of how to take care of the books in the book case so they don't get all shoved into each other and ruined.


Phonics: 


We practiced some sw blend words.   We found a word where the w changes the a to short o sound (swan) and a word where it does not change the a to a short o sound (swam).

Reading Groups:


Group A:        The Goat

Group B:         What Lays Eggs

Group C:         Flags Flying       Pants on My Plate     Seeds Grow Into Plants


Math:

We talked about a lot of good stuff in math today.  First, we talked about how important place values is when we are adding.  I showed them how to line up the place values when writing vertical math problems.  And I talked about how valuable working in tens is when adding or subtracting.  (The strange equations of 25+ 25 + 1 is from our beginning the day work.  Today was the fifty-first day of school.  Using our paper money on the board, that is two quarters and a penny.  The equation is also half of our hundred chart + 1.  The 11 + 11 is because I was helping some children learn how to do that math fact from our doubles practice paper first thing in the morning.  So I used these two examples to demonstrate the importance of lining up the place values and being neat.)  


Our real math lesson was a review of all the math fact strategies I have taught them so far.


I wrote the strategies on the board one at a time.  We talked about and practiced each one.  Then we did some work sheet that helped us practice and review many of them.  I thought our math program had some good work pages for reviewing them.

After lunch we read books, did word play, and practiced our spelling words.

Then we took some time to practice one of the math fact strategies that is not covered very much in our math program, -- which I think is really important.  I think learning to make five and learning to make ten is essential.  So after our spelling test practice, I put this big math problem on the board and asked the students if they would be able to add this up.  They were blown away by how hard it looked.  


Then I told them that we were going to use our magic ten to make it really easy.  I asked them if they saw any numbers in this column that could be put together to make ten.  They became very excited and found lots of numbers.  We crossed them off and hooked them together to make ten.  Then we put the left overs neatly under the column in the ones' place and counted up the tens to put them neatly in the tens' place.

At the beginning, I gave them strips of paper to copy the problem and follow along.  Here are some of their papers.


They really had fun with magic ten.  Though we had practiced making ten long ago when we were finding all the ways to make numbers, I wanted them to practice making ten before we start the next section of math tomorrow.  The next section is adding to make ten and extra.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

October 30, 2013


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Review and give extra help and practice if needed.

Today in First Grade

Phonics: 

We worked on double L words again.  We talked about some simple vocabulary words and misconceptions about words and confusions between words.  Examples:

Call -- not coll or koll
Ill is the more proper word, but our culture uses sick.   Sounds almost like the fish, the eel.
What is a drill?  A drill makes a hole or pushes in a screw.  We use big drills around here to make wells for water for our houses and our school.    Don't confuse well with whale.
A grill is a piece of metal with holes.  A grill is found on the front of a car or over heat for cooking.
The bird, like seagull, is gull--not goal or goll.


Reading Groups:

Group A:       The Color of My Day

Group B:        The Bike That Spike Likes

Group C:         Playing Dress-up        My Farm         Great Grandma and I


Other Activities:

The class read the story   Spilt Milk.    It is about seeing shapes in clouds.  And then they got to cut out white shapes and glue them onto blue paper to make their own cloud pictures.

The school had an assembly about citizenship.

It was early out.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

October 29, 2013


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Today in First Grade

Phonics: 

Click on picture to make it larger.

We reviewed the letters that double at the end of one-syllable, short-vowel words.  (ZZ, SS, FF, and LL)  Then we put an emphasis on talking about the double L words.  We remembered that there are letters that usually make the   a   do the sound of the short O.  The letters are w, u, r, and l.  So L often, though not always, makes  a   say the short O sound.  Most of the time, when there is an ol sound, it will be al.  If there are two L's, or one L, or a silent L, it will usually make the   a   say the short o sound. 

Reading Groups:


Group A:     The Mailbox

Group B:     What's That Noise?      

Group C:      Springs       Pasta


Math:

We really focused on math a lot today.  We worked on it three different times during the day: first thing in the morning, regular math time, and a common math time in the afternoon.  We put a big push into understanding doubles plus one and then moved on and taught doubles minus one.  We did several worksheets and papers.  Here are some different ways we did some problems together to help the children have different ways to visualize what this concept is about.  

First we practiced and reviewed doubles plus one.




Then we started talking about how to see and use doubles by subtracting one from the sum.


Sometimes it helps to envision that you are temporarily adding one to make a double.  Then, after you have found the sum of the double,  you have to remove the one you temporarily added.



So, to sum it up... Doubles plus one uses the smaller number to make the double and then has to add 1 more to make up for the difference of the bigger number.  And doubles minus 1 is using the bigger number to make a double and then having to subtract one to make up for the fact that one of the numbers was one less than the number used in the double.


Then we talked about how they could use either method they wanted.  Whether they liked to use doubles plus one, or doubles minus one, or used them both at different times was up to them, as long as they understood how to do them.  We did a couple worksheets that let the children choose for themselves which way they wanted to use doubles.  



I am finally feeling like the majority of the class is starting to get the idea.  We will certainly have to keep working in it throughout the year. 

Word Play:


During our word play we were making the words other and brother.  I had to remind them about the r-controled vowels: ir, ur, er and yr.  I reminded them that they all make the same sound (ur) and that they are hard to hear, especially at the end of a word.  

As we left at the end of the day, excitement was high about the Halloween carnival and Halloween coming up.

October 28, 2013


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Today in First Grade

Phonics: 

Today we practiced more L blends and R blends.

Reading Groups:


Group A:      Twins     Watch the Sky

Group B:       Making Butter        Making Pizza 

Group C:       What Do You See?       The Tree       Where's the Baby


Math:

We worked on Doubles plus 1.  It is being very hard for many in the class to grasp this concept.  I was scheduled to teach it in one day and then teach doubles minus 1 on a second day, but we have spent more time on it.  The children need to develop the number logic to understand this and other things like it in order to think numerically and manipulate numbers in their minds.

Today we read lots of books, made lots of words, had our practice spelling test, and ended up with a couple minutes at the end of the day for those who have unfinished work to work on completing it, while those who had all their work done could read books.

There is a great deal of excitement about the Halloween carnival on Wednesday night and also Halloween on Thursday night.  

Friday, October 25, 2013

October 25, 2013



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Today in First Grade

Phonics: 


We practiced more R blends.

Reading Groups:

Group A:    Long Ago and Today

Group B:    Dinosaur Time

Group C:   Taking Pictures      Making a Picture      Looking at Flowers


Math:

This concept of making doubles out of numbers that are almost doubles, in order to add them more easily, is a very hard concept for this class to get.  So we practiced again with manipulatives to help us understand how it works.    


These are some problems we did together today.






These are our spelling words.   The first list was this week's words.  The other list is for next week.   

Thursday, October 24, 2013

October 24, 2013


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Today in First Grade

Phonics: 

We practiced L and R blends.

Reading Groups:


Group A:       The Party     Jobs: Making and Helping

Group B:        Run, Rabbit, Run       Birthday Cakes

Group C:        Signs       Animals and Their Babies

Math:

We will be working on doubles and math facts for a while.  First, I again tried to explain how they can find a double when given the large number.  You start with the number.  Cut the ones in half and then the tens in half and figure out how much is in each half.  

If you had 16 crayons and there were even amounts of two colors, how many of each color would you have?

If you had 18 marbles to split between two people, how many would each person get.


The real topic for the day was the math facts strategy "Doubles + 1"
The idea is to see a double where there isn't one.   So, if you are adding 4 + 5, then you should see it as
 4 + (4 + 1).  Very few of the children are getting the idea.   It is a hard concept.  The papers in the program are only confusing them.  We were supposed to start Doubles - 1 tomorrow, but we may stay on Doubles + 1 for a long time.  No sense moving on until they understand.


Word Play:

When we did our word play in the afternoon, the last word was monster.  Most of the children spelled it monstr.   I keep reminding them that ir, ur, er, and yr all make the same sound and are hard to hear, especially when it is at the end of a word.


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

October 23, 2013



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Today in First Grade

Phonics: 

We reviewed and practiced a few L blends and R blends.

The children take turns doing Waterford (a learning program) on computers for half an hour each morning while other children read to me.

Reading groups:


Group A:     My Dog     Milk Shake

Group B:     Rain           Tickling

Group C:     Sebastian Learns to Fly       Mud, Mud, Mud


Math:

We only had time for a very short lesson.  I tried to show how you could work backwards form a larger (even) number to find the double that makes it.  Cut the tens in half into tens and/or fives.  Then cut the ones in half.  (First Graders aren't ready for more advanced division.)

Life Skills:

 Mrs. B taught a lesson about kindness.

After lunch we had an assembly where the county sheriffs came out with their police and drug dog.  It was our Red Ribbon Week assembly.  Wish we had more time.  

Then it was early out and everyone went home.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

October 22, 2013



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Today in First Grade

Phonics: 



We learned the words single and plural, what they mean, and how to make words plural.  Single means one.  Plural means more than one.  Most words can be changed from singular to plural by simply adding an s on the end, such as car to cars, cat to cats, rock to rocks.  However, when a word ends in an s, or other sound which is similar to an s or z, or sounds that don't blend well with an s, then just putting an s can't be heard or distinguished.  That's when an es needs to be added instead of just an s.  Some examples:  Churchs doesn't work, so it needs to be churches.  Classs doesn't work, so it has to be classes.  Buzzs doesn't work, so it has to be buzzes.  So we practiced changing words from singular to plural today.  It was a really lot to learn all at once.  We will need to practice it more.   


Reading Groups:


Group A:   Big and Little       Helping in the Yard

Group B:    In a Cold, Cold Place         In the Sea           

Group C:     The Little Green Man Visits a Farm         

Math:

We talked about doubles today.  This is the point that I start really trying to help children learn number sense and develop an ability to think and manipulate numbers in their heads.  If they can memorize their math facts, that is great.  If they can also manipulate numbers along with memorizing them, that is extra great.   So I started off talking about the two magic numbers that we try to use in our heads that help us think in numbers.



The more we can break down and manipulate numbers into fives and tens, the easier working with numbers can be.  Today we worked with doubles and breaking them down into fives and making tens from them. 

These are the simple doubles that are most easily remembered and worked with.  

With higher doubles it is often good to think of them in fives and tens while we work toward memorizing and using them.

If double sixes (notice the plural form of a word that ends in x) are thought of as 5 +1 and 5 + 1  (making the magic number of 5 to help us make the magic number of 10), then the two fives can be combined to make a ten and the two ones make two, so 10 + 2 = 12.
7 + 7 becomes 5 + 2 and 5 + 2 so that the two fives make a magic ten and the two 2s make four, thus 10 + 4 = 14.

We often think of 8 as being double fours.  So double eights is 4+ 4+ 4 + 4.  This can be good, but it is better to think of 8 + 8 as 5 + 3 and 5 + 3.   This would then make a 10 + 6 = 16.

A nine could be thought of as 6 + 3 or 7 + 2, or 8 + 1.  But if we work towards using the magic numbers of 5 and10, then it is best to think of  9  and 9 as  5 + 4 and 5 + 4.  Thus it turns into 10 + 8 = 18.


Word Play:

In our word play in the afternoon, we sorted words into two different ways to make the long i sound.  First we listed the ways to make a long i sound:  ie as in die,  i _ e as in bike,   y _ e as in type,  y as in sky,  and igh as in night.  We then sorted i_e words and igh words.

Here are this week's spelling words.



Wednesday, October 16, 2013

October 16, 2013



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Today in First Grade


Our Field Trip















Have a great vacation!  See you next Tuesday.