PrA Friday note

Dear Families,

Welcome back! We were so excited to start the new year with hearing about the wonderful things you all did over the break. The students were ready to settle back in and get to work. During our morning meetings, we revisited our community agreements so we can continue to work as a team to support one another.

This week, we embarked on an exploration of opinion writing (what many people refer to as persuasive writing). Weʼre aiming for our students to be able not only to state an opinion and give reasons to support it, but also to create an organizational structure for those reasons and use linking words and phrases (first, second, etc., another reason, for example, and the like) to help readers access that structure.

The good news is that Primary students want not only to be seen but also heard, and the invitation to make their opinions known far and wide is appealing. They are primed and ready to produce their opinions about the books they read, the foods they eat, the

movies they watch, and the video games they play. They argue for a later bedtime, a trip to a water park, and the opportunity to get a new puppy. Itʼs a small step, then, to teach children to channel their opinion writing into a specific genre that exists in the world.

This unit supports opinion writing by teaching first- and second-graders to write persuasive reviews and persuasive letters. The real goal of the unit is not so much to teach students the specific genre of persuasive writing as to teach them the skills involved in using their writing to persuade others to believe what they believe and, ultimately, to take action.

As always, we love to hear what you’re hearing at home, and let us know if you have any questions.

The art teachers want to share this news with you: In art classes, Primary students will be drawing the front facade of their houses, and then making a clay "portrait" of their house. This ties in with the classroom theme of neighborhoods. If you have not already done so, could you please take a photo of the front facade of your house or apartment building, and email it to your child's classroom teachers? Having reference photos will greatly assist the students with their drawings.

A reminder that Primary Unit parents are having a Potluck get together on Wednesday, January 20th, from 6:30-8:30.

This week, ask me…

….about any new greetings during morning meeting. What community agreement did we focus on this week?

...about my journal entry. Also, what does the word persuasion mean? How can I persuade someone?

…who I am in a book club with. What book am I reading in my book club? What is a prediction? How can I make a prediction? Why and when can I skip a word or trade a word when I am reading? What are character traits? (gr.2)

...about (place value) tens and ones. What is expanded form? What is the January calendar all about? How can I use addition facts to solve subtraction facts? (gr.1 math)

…to play the number line game with you. What is the least number of leaps of 1, 5, or 10 you can make to get to different numbers? (gr. 2 math)

Best, Jane and Bernadette