1B Family Update 2

September 29, 2017

Goodbye September!

And just like that, we say goodbye to our first month in first grade! What a great month it has been for our amazing 1B friends. Here is an update of what we have been doing these past two weeks!

Academic Update

Literacy - Reading

During our Readers Workshop our 1B friends were thinking about riding a bicycle to determine how to find a Just Right Book! Sounds interesting right?! Our fantastic readers have learned how to determine whether a book is uphill (too hard) downhill (too easy) or Just Right (Perfect for you) by thinking about how someone would feel riding a bike in different ways. For example, when someone is riding "uphill" they may get frustrated, feel like it is way too hard to accomplish, or simply give up. When someone is riding a bike downhill, they are going way too fast, it seems as the ride is very easy, and they memorized their path. Students were taught to make this connection of bike riding to picking books for themselves that felt Just Right for them. When you find a Just Right book you come across a couple of bumps but remain in a straight path. Your ride is enjoyable and you understand the path you have chosen. Now we want our 1B friends to think about this when they shop around for their own books.We have continued our Literacy Block and will soon start Guided Reading where our friends strengthen their reading skills. During this time, students will also be going through 3 rotations where they will work in Phonics Stations or have writing activities with other teachers who are supporting our class during this time. Our 1B friends have also been learning reading strategies that include: caring for books, rereading, and reading to a partner. In order for our 1B friends to expand their strategies have them practice some of these methods at home. For example, have your child determine whether a book is an "uphill book, downhill, or Just Right." You can also have your child read to you every night for at least 10 minutes by sitting in an EEKK position (Elbow to Elbow - Knee to Knee). Have your child practice rereading to figure out words or notice specifics in pictures they did not notice the first time.

Literacy - Writing

This week our authors have finally made their stories come to life! They have learned how to sit EEKK (eye to eye – knee to knee) in order to express their heart map stories to their writing partners. This allowed friends to retell their stories across three fingers, which resembled the beginning, middle, and end. When one partner was done, the other friend had the opportunity to ask questions about their stories. After choosing a topic from their heart map, students had to go back to their writing and add details to their picture by labeling and adding more words and small details to their writing to make their pieces come to life! Soon, we will be starting a new unit on small moments that will focus on “zooming into” one specific event. Over the weekend, have your child think about one specific event such as “making sandcastles at the beach, losing their first tooth, or making pumpkin pie!”


Our mathematicians are hard at work! We have begun our new unit on building the fluency of counting and adding. We have been working very hard at mastering the art of creating number bonds so that they can recognize that two parts make a whole and writing number sentences that match our work! We've also recently introduced the "counting on" strategy as a way to add more efficiently by counting on from the first addend, starting at a bigger number and counting on from it. At home, continue encouraging your child to add objects in their daily life and solving it by counting on. For example, for the following problem, we had 6 apples and bought 4 more, how many do we have now? Encourage your child to count on from 6, "7, 8, 9, 10" to get to the answer. Our mathematicians are off to such a great start and are excited to continue to grow their brains!


In inquiry, our friends have been reading and learning about how many families are the same but can also be different. Our 1B friends also had a little glimpse into Ms. Garcia's and Ms. Bystrova's family. They were able to see our kids, parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. Moving forward, we are going to explore some questions that they have about family and want to learn about. If you haven't already done so, please send a family photo to dtes1b@brooklynprospect.org. We want to add them to our inquiry board! We are so excited to learn about the family diversity in 1B!



  • Tuesday, October 03 | Back To School Night - 1st Grade (6-7:30pm)

  • Monday, October 09| Columbus Day, NO SCHOOL

  • Tuesday, October 10 | NO SCHOOL

  • Thursday, October 12 | First Grade Parent Coffee [PTSO]

  • Thursday, October 19 | Stomping Ground Photo Picture Day

  • Friday, October 27 | NO SCHOOL

School Arrival

It has been great to watch our friends come in every morning and get ready to start their day. We want to keep this routine going so we wanted to send a brief reminder that school starts at 8:10am. We noticed some friends are arriving a bit later than usual and we would love to start our Morning Meetings at 8:30am in order to begin our day. During Morning Meeting, we start off our day going over the calendar and reading our morning message for any important announcements so we would love for all of our 1B friends to be present. We understand that buses and elevator traffic may play a big factor so we can make adjustments accordingly and start Morning Meeting at 8:40am the latest if needed. Thank you all for being so supportive and understanding!

Let's Dance!

Dance is no longer in the MPR and we are SO excited! This means more space to leap, turn, gallop, spin and balance! However, 1B is also adapting to being in several different spaces, the Gym and the new Play Space (once per week). Since they are adjusting to the new spaces, they are learning and perfecting dance class routines and protocols. First graders are also becoming guided improvisation experts by performing movement stories for their classmates. Lastly, they learning about a young boy from Mexico who became a Modern Dance pioneer, José Limón.
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Ooh La La! First Grade artists are off and running!

Grade One Artists kicked the year off with an investigation of the simplest design elements: dots and lines. They explored the work of Yayoi Kusama first to see how she uses a variety of dots/lines in her paintings and sculptures (curvy, zig zag, scribbly, intersecting, dotted, etc.).

Today, artists looked at the work of Frank Stella whose paintings ¡ P O P ! off the wall. Please be on the lookout for your artist’s work on display at school in the coming weeks. See you at Open House!!

Many thanks!

Ms. Walsh and Ms. Drew

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