Monday, January 31, 2011

Number Worlds

We are so excited to be offering another computer program to our students that can also be used at home. The interesting thing about this program is that your student starts with first grade math activities and then as the computer gets to know your student, it moves him/her up and down in the different strands of Math. This is the perfect program for our students who have mastered the First Grade Math Diagnostic at this time of year because they will quickly move up to second grade activities. This is also great for students who have an area where they need extra practice. We will be getting most of the students on for a 20 minute session each week but we would love if you could get them on for sessions each day or several times a week. We demo-ed the program in class today for the students so they should be vaguely familiar with it. Your child's password is taped to the inside of his/her planner today, so try it out and let us know how it works!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Lobsters and sea stars and crabs - oh my!

What an exciting day in our classroom. Even Mrs, Phillips came to watch! Each of the children had a chance to check out 3 different sea creatures. Mrs. Roberts showed them videos and books but she also had a live sea star! You'll have to ask your child about how the starfish eats! Next Mrs Timmons had borrowed a hermit crab from 5th grade Scientist, Mrs. Swidorsky. She showed the children videos and read a book about hermit crabs but the kids really ohh-ed and ahh-ed as she lifted the real crab out of its habitat. She also had a great specimen of a hermit crab that had died. The children were especially fascinated as they watched the video of the hermit crab lifting himself out of one shell and into another!

Mrs. Ruark showed the class a live lobster! It was so-o-o-o cool. She had the lobster's powerful claws taped so that the kids couldn't get hurt.

This was one of the last lessons in our Science unit of the things that animals need to survive. Make sure to ask your child what animals need to survive (Hint: food, water, air, space, shelter)!

Friday, January 28, 2011


We have completed our math unit on Addition and Subtraction Story Problems and today began a new unit on measurement. We have been using non-standard units to measure. Today we measured with linking cubes and one inch tiles! It was fun!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Taking a Walk on the Spacey Side!

Today was our BIG first grade Sleepover! We started the morning with a parade filled with first graders in pajamas carrying their space pillows, flashlights and glow bracelets. The upper grades lined the hallways as the proud first graders marched by. They ended in a flurry of flashbulbs as they met family in the Dining Room for Breakfast and entertainment led by the Principal. Then it was on to centers led by our Resource Team. Many of the parents probably got better pictures than we did so send them on and we'll share them on the blog. It was a galactic adventure!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Pillow Talk!

As part of our "Starry, Starry Night" solar system unit, parents were invited to make pillows with their child. They came in shaped like suns and planets, quarter moons, stars, and space ships. They were creative and fun and the children were so proud! Hope you had a chance to see them displayed in the lobby! The students will be carrying them to the Constellation Ball on Thursday as we all come in our pajamas and enjoy a day of sleepover and solar system fun! Can't wait!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

A Night Under the Stars!

Tonight families came to school to enjoy a movie under the stars. Unfortunately, the night time temperature fell to 29 degrees - a little too cold to enjoy being outside even in sunny Florida so we had to move the event inside, but we were so glad to see so many of our families. Several telescopes were set up in the night air so I hope everyone was able to see the craters in the moon and Venus - our brightest planet. Don't worry - we didn't REALLY spend the night - see everyone tomorrow!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Mystery Beads

Did your child come home today with mystery beads on a pipe cleaner bracelet? I hope your child insisted that you listen while he related the story of how we started with white beads but when we went in the sun, the beads turned colors! I hope s/he actually dragged you outside so you could see for yourself!! These amazing beads have photochromatic dyes that react to UV light and cause the normally white beads to change into vibrant colors when exposed to the sun's ultraviolent rays. Then when removed from the sunlight, the beads revert back to white! We did this experiment in our class to show children that the sun emits powerful rays. These same invisible rays that can change the colors of the beads can also change the color of our skin when we go to the beach! Tomorrow we will be coating the beads with sunscreen to show the children how the lotion/ spray can protect skin from the invisible rays just like it protects the beads from changing colors. Super fun!