Our young scientists have been hard at work this week! After carefully mapping the backyard in their Math and Science Notebooks, First Graders struck out into the backyard in search of ants. Every time an ant was found, students recorded its location on the their maps. By the end of our outdoor time, dozens of ant locations were reported. The First Graders would let classmates know that ants had been found by gleefully shouting, “ANT ALERT! ANT ALERT!” until all came running to observe and record the insect.
It has been amazing to see just how much our writers have improved over the past two weeks. This week alone, First Graders learned to add detail by “unfreezing” their characters (making them move and talk), by telling their story bit by tiny bit, and by “bringing the inside out” (describing the thoughts and feelings of characters). These three lessons have contributed to a significant jump in writing quality. It is exciting to see their writing improve each and every day!
First Grade readers got a big treat this week when we started a new reading unit all about nonfiction books. Our students love to learn all they can about new facts and information, from animal habitats to world cultures. This week we focused on what nonfiction readers do to get ready to read. First, nonfiction readers look at the cover of the book and think, “What might I learn in this book?” Second, they activate prior knowledge by thinking, “What do I already know about this topic?” Look for students to be practicing these new reading behaviors at home!