Dear Families,

I wanted to update as to homework especially as the school year winds down. 

First you will probably notice that our spelling words look a bit different.  We will be reading Amazing Whales this week and our words are pulled from this non-fiction text. 

Second even though we have finished reading the small decodable booklets, I’ll be sending the extras home as another opportunity to read a familiar text.  I’ve included a blank recording sheet.  Please record the date, the title and your signature.  The booklets are yours to keep at home.  It is my hope that you can use them over the summer for students to continue practice their reading and to perhaps read to a younger brother or sister.  This in addition to family books, library books, thrift shop books, garage sale books and books as gifts will help stop the dreaded summer slide.  As you may know Oregon has one of the shortest school years in the nation.  Anything we can do to keep students reading is helpful and puts each student in better stead for second grade both from a skill perspective and a confidence perspective. 

We still have another week or so to continue in the math unit we’ve been working on–coins and adding two digit numbers up to  100.  You’ve noticed that the number one thing we’re working on is showing our work.  So there will be lots of number bonds, ten sticks or the arrow way.  The big take away in math is that students must show their work.  Simply putting down an answer, even the correct answer will not be enough.  As you may have noticed we are taking slow steps toward teaching students the conventional algorithm that you and I learned in school.  But first it is show, show, show your work.  Students must show their understanding of place value–tens and ones.

And of course there is the reading book.  The first grade goal is for every student to read at 68 correct words per minute or more in a standard first grade passage.  As of the last measurement our class average is 74 words in a minute.  Yes, I know reading is not a team sport but the average shows you that there are several students who are reading well above the grade level average.  And another chunk who are right there at the cusp and will soon pop up to the grade level benchmark.  I always say there are three hard working folk who get kids up to benchmark and on their way to decoding print and ready to transition from learning to read to reading to learn–hard working kids, hard working parents and a hard working teacher.  It takes all of us to get our kids up to grade level and ready to go into second grade comfortable with the grade level requirements.  So thank you for listening to your child read, read, and read again and keep them motivated and in the game even as the school year winds down.  My plan is to take one more measurement that last week of school and I’ll be excited to see growth between now and then.

Thanks for all you do in raising such curious, engaging, determined and joyful learners.

With warm regards, Robin Hanson

One Response to Homework

  • Kathy Rich (grandparent of Lily Fernandez) says:

    Dear Ms. Hanson, thank you for the “Summer goals” heads up with reading and Math..a very clear and informative directive and one that is manageable and fun ! I saw the decodable sheet in Lily’s folder so I assume we keep this at home ? Lily has loved to learn how to read this year..a cause near and very dear to my heart..we are Library bound on a weekly basis and thankful for the stimulating selection that you offered this term…”Mercy Watson” will forever be a part of our entertainment zone and “Henry and Mudge” a close follow ! I want to stay on top of the Math and hope that you can suggest an approach that scaffolds current practices and supports second grade transition. I have kept all of her papers and referenced the Common Core on line site but I want to promote the “show your work”…I need this practice too !! If you have “left over” work sheets I would appreciate them, I can make copies if necessary. As always, your involvement and care for our little ones is evident every day..you are so valued !!

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