Primary A Weekly Note

Dear Primary A Families,

As the February days move swiftly by, Primary A students continue to build a classroom filled with a love for learning.  It is hard to believe that we just celebrated the 100th Day of School on Wednesday.

We enjoyed a variety of activities as we cycled through the Primary Unit classrooms. In Primary A, we decided to write 100 thank-you notes to Philadelphia police officers. We explained that this is a direct connection to our neighborhood study because police officers protect us and keep our neighborhoods safe daily. In Primary B, the students made 100 sandwiches for people experiencing homelessness. In Primary C, students stacked 100 cups for pennies to donate. Finally, the primary students got in some fun exercising while counting and organizing pennies in Primary D. We really enjoy taking time to celebrate as a team, and the 100th Day is a great opportunity for the students in the Primary Unit to learn and have fun together. It is especially special when our learning is connected to community appreciation and service!

In reading workshop we continued to focus our energy on how nonfiction books teach us factual information about various topics. This week we read aloud a portion of the book Tigers by Laura Marsh. This book had many of the nonfiction text features we have been learning about.  The students really enjoyed the lifelike photographs featured in the book. We used the book to connect to our nonfiction writing by working together to brainstorm subheadings for the big topic or main idea, tigers. We completed a graphic organizer that helped us align the facts we learned with the subtopic we decided to focus on. This whole group practice led us into using the graphic organizer in our own nonfiction books.  Students continued to work on their nonfiction writing by creating subtopics for their subject and then adding facts.  We have been learning to take factual information from text and express it in our own words -- very challenging!

Our theme work continues to be engaging.  We have made final choices of the resources we will include in our own classroom neighborhoods. This was challenging because we were limited to six resources each. We discussed ways to share. An example of this was the idea that one neighborhood that had no hair salon could rely on “traveling” to another neighborhood to use that service.  We also distinguished between goods and services and applied these definitions to our neighborhood resources.

This week, ask me:

  • about Encuentro this morning. What did I learn about science and scientists?
  • about the play, A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare. What was my favorite part?
  • what’s happening in our amazing read aloud, Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren.  
  • what I am reading. What strategies am I using during independent reading? What am I learning in my small reading group?

Things to Know:

Rather than having a one-day event, we will be holding "open houses" in our classrooms on Monday, 3/13; Tuesday, 3/14; and Wednesday, 3/15, from 7:55 - 8:15 a.m. You do not need to sign up for a particular date or even let us know when you're coming -- just show up with your child, and he or she will take care of the rest!

The Primary Unit Chorus will still be performing on Friday, 3/17, at 9:00 a.m., but we will not be inviting families to visit our classrooms before or after the concert. 

Keep your eyes out for the Doodle poll to sign up for the spring parent/teacher conferences on March 23rd and 24th.

In partnership,

Bernadette and Cinda