Primary A Weekly Note

Dear Primary A Families,

It has been another productive week filled with fun learning in Primary A.  This week in reading we continued to work on improving our reading by using and adding to our reading strategies during reading workshop.  We also began to  think about nonfiction books and how they differ from fiction books.  We took a close look at and discussed nonfiction text features.  A few of those features included the table of contents, photographs, labels, captions, and the glossary. After using a text, The Life Cycle of a Butterfly by Bobbie Kalman, to highlight nonfiction characteristics, we paired up to read some similar books to look for the text features.  As we gathered back together, it was clear that Primary A students were tuned in during their partner reading.  They were able to share so many facts using specific text features of the books they read and glanced through.

In writing, we began our first (hopefully of many!) nonfiction books.  We chose an area of expertise, such as football, animals, swimming, babies, dinosaurs, etc., and started writing facts we knew.  In this first booklet we are concentrating on using a teaching voice, as opposed to the storytelling voice we used in our small moments writing. We are making sure to write a different interesting fact on each page, and then going back to write details about each fact. As we continue to write nonfiction we will add new skills to our writing!  

To continue our discussions around our neighborhood theme, we took a neighborhood walk. This was a wonderful way to get us thinking about what makes up a city neighborhood. As we walked, our task was to just observe.  We had lots of questions and connections to the things we saw.  When we returned to school, we took some time to write down and illustrate a few things we observed. As we continue with our neighborhood study, we will begin to think about how the things in a community are important to our daily lives.

Stay tuned for a service learning project called Reach Out and Read.  We will get you more information soon about this project to raise money for families who don’t have access to books. We will ask students to read in order to help raise money for this worthy cause. In the past we have participated in this project as an element of our work around Martin Luther King Jr Day of Service. The Reach Out and Read project will last for a month, and it will give us a chance to raise funds for books and keep track of the many books we read!  We will fill in details soon about this exciting project.  Please know that there are several ways to participate. If your family decides to contribute to the project by keeping track of the pages of books read or whole books read instead of contributing financially, we will welcome your support.  Keep an eye out for details coming your way soon!

Things to Know: No school Friday or Monday (January 13 and 16)

Enjoy the long weekend,

Cinda and Bernadette