Mrs. Kathy Rathbun
1st Grade: Reading/Language Arts & Social Studies
Hello and Welcome!
First Grade is THE place to be! Our days are packed full with reading, writing, spelling, listening to read-alouds, exporing our text books, practicing being kind Christian children, and having fun!
Throughout the year we work through our Journeys reading program. We were blessed with new, revised editions of all our Journeys materials last year due to the amazing generosity of our Donum Fidei Auction. In addition to that we have small group reading instruction for all students. I incorporate the Daily 5 components (Read to Self, Read to Someone, Listen to Reading, Word Work, Work on Writing), plus I am adding Computer as one of the options. I have used Daily 5 for years and appreciate the structure it provides for students to enhance their language arts skills while I work with small reading groups.
As your 1st grader develops as a reader there are some helpful things that can be practiced at home:
- encourage using strategies beyond sounding out - pictures; stretch out all the sounds & put together; skip the word, read the rest of the sentence and then go back; try a word that makes sense; try a different vowel sound
- they read a page, you read a page
- 5-word rule: if they are unable to read more than 5 words on a page the text is too difficult for them to read alone
- for harder texts, have them find words they do know on the page before you read it
- comprehension (understanding what was read) is as important as word-calling; always ask your student to tell you about what they just read (by book, by chapter, by page, whatever works best)
- if unable to retell what was just read, have them read it again, slower if necessary, and concentrate on comprehension
We begin writing on day one of 1st Grade, and by the end of the year our stories will be amazing! However, you may not always be able to read what we are writing, but we will get better and better. Since we aren't born knowing how to spell, and spelling in the English language is not easy, much of our writing will begin as 'temporary spelling'. As children are writing a word they don't know how to spell they listen for the sounds they hear and write the letters that make those sounds. This temporary spelling is not always easy for us adults to read (unless you've had years of experience like I have), but it is much more effective than each student waiting for an adult to spell the word they want to write. And they really do learn how to spell those words they are writing!
Our Social Studies textbook is aligned with ourJourneys Reading series, with six units that correspond with the six Reading units. Throughout these units we learn about History, Civics/Government, Geography and Economics.
Test & Quizzes
New spelling words come home on Wednesdays and spelling tests are the following Tuesday. Each student needs to bring in a copy of spelling practice from home, signed by a parent, or you can email a picture of practice. ** I do keep track of their spelling homework, and those students who turn in Spelling Homework five weeks in a row get a little treat from me!
In early January I did a new Spelling Inventory with all the students and adjusted spelling groups. The Inventory gives all the students the same 26 words, and each student is placed according to the spelling features they know vs those they struggled with. I sent an email telling you which group your child is in now (which can be the same or different than their last group).
SPELLING LISTS - Test Date 2/12/20
Group 1: time, like, kite, bike, white, drive, him, sit, rip, pin
Group 2: I'm, don't, isn't, can't, we'll, it's, I've, didn't, you're, that's, wasn't, you've
Group 3: I'm, don't, isn't, can't, we'll, it's, I've, didn't, you're, that's, wasn't, you've
Group 4: I'm, don't, isn't, can't, we'll, it's, I've, didn't, you're, that's, wasn't, you've
First of all - thanks to all the Grandparents that spent time with us last Thursday! We had a great turnout and a good time was had by all! Also, thank you to all of you that attended Mass Sunday, Jan. 26 to help us kick off Catholic Schools week. It is very meaningful for the students to connect their Thursday school Mass with their family Sunday Mass.
In our Journeys book we read a story about reptiles and amphibians, and a report written about one of the creatures. Then each student chose a book about a reptile or amphibian and wrote a report about their choice. The report had to include an opening sentence, three factual sentences, and a closing (opinion) sentence. Then I added another 'dimension' to the unit this year - each student made a 3-D version of their creature. I collected a lot of 'stuff' from my craft supplies and the Dollar Tree (love that place) and let them go to town with their imaginations. I am taking a picture of each student with their creature and will print them and send them home next week.
We are beginning Unit 4 of our Journeys reading series and Social Studies.
As we did last year, the entire school is learning about/following the Fruits of the Spirit this year. Every month each class will vote for the student in their group that most exhibits the virtue of that month. Carter was voted as the student who most showed KINDNESS in January. February's Fruit of the Spirit is GOODNESS.
As always, thank you for your support of your child and your child's teachers - it means the world to all of us!
UPCOMING ACTIVITIES: Only one more party - Valentines Party next Friday. Thanks for all who help with this fun time!
Classroom Party Sign UpParents, click the link below to sign up for various classroom parties throughout the year!
Sign Up Genius - Rathbun