Primary A Weekly Note

Dear Primary A Families,

We had a delightful week learning together! We continued to write small moment stories. We added to our “Tiny Topics” lists of potential topics for stories. We created an anchor chart titled “Strategies for Generating Narrative Writing” and have discussed this sophisticated terminology! We’ve learned that:

  • Strategy = smart ways to work
  • Generate = making or creating
  • Narrative = telling a story

Our strategies so far include telling a story bit by bit, telling what happens first, then next, then next, and so on, stretching out the story across pages. We thought of examples of stories that we were bursting to tell and added them to our list to help us remember when we are ready to start a new story. We are also reading Gooney Bird Greene by Lois Lowry, a story about an engaging second grader who tells stories about her life to her class. She uses many wonderful writing strategies that we plan to incorporate into our own stories.

In reading, we are working on building volume, the number of “good fit” books we are reading during our workshop time. We are logging the titles of the books we read daily, understanding that we may reread books to help grow our fluency. Our mini-lessons focused on making predictions by using picture clues, reading the words, and then confirming our predictions.

These strategies fall under the comprehension section of our CAFE Menu. We agreed that after we read a book, we should do something! That something could include rereading our favorite part, rereading the whole book, or retelling the story across our five fingers. When we discussed rereading the entire book or our favorite part, we learned that we could become the characters by reading to demonstrate how characters feel. This had us changing our voices to show happiness, sadness, excitement, confusion, or anger. Students in Primary A are so eager to read, and we are excited to watch them grow as they begin to utilize the strategies we are teaching.

First-grade mathematicians continued to grow in demonstrating how to make numbers; using number models, coins, tally marks, part-part-whole models; and identifying numbers as odd or even. We worked on our goal of building strong number sense using tools such as number racks, spinners, and ten-frames cards. We played a group game, Number Rack Detectives, which had us using clues to find missing addends. In math, second graders discussed doubles and halves. We learned how to fold paper in half again and again, until we could no longer fold it, and count the number of rectangles we made. This work gave us data that we could arrange to see patterns of doubling, that will help us efficiently compute. We were amazed at how quickly the numbers got bigger when doubled!

This week, ask me about:

  • the amazing concert on Thursday afternoon;
  • Encuentro on Friday and what I liked best; 
  • the new little feathered friend we met at The Schuylkill Center;
  • the recess guidelines that will help us make good choices about playmates and keep our games fun.

Things to know: There is no school on November 3 and 4. We look forward to seeing you then for conferences. Please check the calendar above this note for any additional important dates.

Have a fun and restful weekend!

In partnership,

Cinda and Bernadette