Thursday, February 2, 2012

Early spring?

 Hello and Happy Groundhog Day!

Well it looks like Phil the groundhog saw his shadow, but Jimmy the groundhog in Madison did not so I am going with Jimmy!  Early spring it is!!

We had a day full of groundhog activities in the classroom.  After guided reading we started a writing project where they were asked to explain what their burrow would look like if they were groundhogs.  We discussed how the ground would feel at this time of the year and what we would need to be comfortable underground.  At this time of year first graders still struggle with adding detail in their writing.  The focus was correcting punctuation and making sure uppercase letters were used only when needed.  It seems like I am constantly reminding them to put capital letters at the beginning of sentences and change the capitals from uppercase to lowercase between words.  : )

I found this groundhog activity from Cara Carroll (The First Grade Parade) online and the kids just loved it. 

If you can't read this writing it says, "This is my burrow.  It is warm and cozy.  My bed is made and floor is clean!"  - Too cute : )

Here is a picture of the groundhog's burrow.  See the groundhog climbing the ladder- even a smile on his face.  Great detail with the lights, butterfly decor on the wall, a bathroom (brown box), and blocks and a Barbie to play with (orange).

Here is what the project looked like with the groundhog head (made out of three hearts).

Here are the groundhog hats we made at the end of the day.

We also worked on measurement for math today.  We measured the groundhog shadows in inches and also measured lines in centimeters.  It went along great with our Trailblazers lesson about Goldilocks and the Three Rectangles.  In that lesson we measured the length, width, and area of three rectangles to see who was the "biggest."  

Our morning was all Language Arts which includes guided reading.  Please make sure your child is bringing home their guided reading books EVERY night.  Even if your child has the book basically memorized they still need to read at night to practice fluency.  When they do not read at night eventually the text will get too challenging and fluency along with comprehension will suffer.  I tell them they should be reading at a normal talking voice pace, Goldilocks style- not too fast or too slow.  When they are finished reading check their understanding of the story by asking questions about the characters, setting, plot, beginning, middle , end of story, and so on. 

Please feel free to leave feedback about this site and what else you would like to see posted. 


Mrs. Parker

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