Grade One Gazette

Learning Today, Leading Tomorrow.

March 2015

Language Arts

Writing - Opinion Pieces. Students were introduced to the OREO strategy and it really clicked! You can think of opinion writing like an Oreo cookie. You want your piece to be stuffed full of reasons and examples, just like an Oreo with lots of icing in the middle!

O = Opinion. State your Opinion.

R= Reason. Give a Reason why you have that opinion.

E = Example. Give an example to add detail.

O = Opinion. Finally, restate your opinion at the end.

Reading - Comprehension Strategies

  • Continue learning how to retell a story through the 5-Finger Retell trick
  • Inferring - Using our own background knowledge and evidence from the text to better understand what we are reading.

Jabber the Reteller and Iggy the Inferring Iguana are characters that help kids remember these comprehension strategies.

Spelling: Spelling tests will be on Fridays. I will include a copy of the sort we work on in class so kids can practice at home. The spelling patterns are getting more challenging as we get later into the year.

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This is how it looks when kids get Oreos in the morning to go with a writing assignment!


Please take a moment to look into Raz-Kids, an EXCELLENT resource for our young readers! Hopefully you found the log-on information in your child's Tuesday folder. With this program, you will have access to hundreds of books at your child's reading level. I have set them up with "assignments" or books at their level, then they take a comprehension quiz after reading the story. (They may listen to the story first if they choose, but I strongly encourage them to read it on their own after listening.) After their quiz, they will earn points to build their robot or rocket on Friday at school. I have reserved the iPad cart for Friday so kids can do this.


  • Problem Solving: Compare more/fewer story problem types
  • Time to the hour and half hour
  • Creating true number sentences using the =,<,> symbols.
  • Finding patterns on the 100 chart when you add ten to a number or take ten away.
  • Addition and subtraction fact fluency - sums to 10.

Social Studies

Map Skills

Students have been learning basic map skills and have been captivated by Google Earth. We are so fortunate to have the technology to travel to anywhere we want to go, watch videos and see pictures instantly

The Google Earth perspective really helps kids see where we are on the map!


  • We have conducted two experiments - a volcano model showing chemical changes with vinegar and baking soda, and another with copper pennies turning green just like the Statue of Liberty.
  • Students made observations, asked questions, made predictions, and proved or disproved their predictions based on observations.
  • We will also figure out how to separate salt grains from sand grains without taking tweezers and removing them one by one.
  • Thanks to Ben Davidson for bringing in his experiment book and sharing these experiments with the class!

Important Dates

  • Friday, March 20th - Down Syndrome Awareness Day. Wear socks. Lots of them!
  • April 7,8,9 - ITBS Testing - Standardized testing for 1st and 2nd grade. (ITBS is an acronym for Iowa Test of Basic Skills.)
  • April 10 - Bash K-2

Future Field Trip Days

  • April 14th - Walton Arts Center performance of Spot
  • May 22nd - Crystal Bridges
  • June 3rd - One room schoolhouse near Rocky Branch in Rogers. This one is really cool!

Our Schedule

7:25 - 7:40 Meet and Greet

7:40 Tardy Bell

7:45 Round Up (Enrichment and Math/Literacy Interventions)

8:15 Morning Meeting, Phonics, Shared Reading/Writing (Social Studies or Science topic)

8:30 Writer's Workshop

9:15 Snack Time / Read Aloud

9:30 Math

10:30 Read Aloud, Bathroom break before lunch

10:40 Lunch

11:15 Reader's Workshop / Stations

12:15 Word Study

12:40 Recess

1:05 - Social Studies or Science, Pack and Stack

1:35 Specials

2:40 Dismissal


Monday: Spanish/Library (30 minutes each)

Tuesday: Music

Wednesday: PE

Thursday: Art

Friday: PE


Your snack donations have been GREATLY appreciated! We have two snack times now and they have come in very handy!