1B Family Update

Dear Families

Happy December! It was so great to see every family at Parent Teacher Conferences! Here are the updates about what has been going on in 1B.

In Reading, we added onto our retelling skills by using sequencing words in our retell. To do this, we use words like “first, next, then, after that, finally” to help us remember the order that a story occurs and strengthen our recall. When we are reading stories, ask us questions with these sequencing words.

• What happened first?

• What happened next?

• What is the final event?

In Writing, we are publishing! We took our previously written stories, edited them and then wrote a final copy n! Whew, it was a lot of work! If your child likes to write at home, going through the same process may increase his/her stamina when working on a single piece of writing. Encourage students to write our first draft and then make any edits by erasing and fixing or using a special pen.

In Math, we have been exploring geometry, including both 2D and 3D shapes. We have identifiied 2D shapes (circle, triangle, square, rectangle, rhombus, trapezoid, pentagon, hexagon, octagon) by their attributes: how many straight sides and corners they have. Students then studied 3D shapes (spheres, cubes, cones, rectangular prisms, triangular prism, cylinders, square pyramid) and their attributes: faces, edges and vertices. The Rock Stars sorted shapes, went on scavenger hunts for shapes, created them with geoboards and playdough, and learned that 2D and 3D shapes are around us everywhere! Students also partitioned or divided shapes into other shapes. For example, students realized that you can make a square from two triangles or a hexagon from 2 trapezoids. They also partitioned or divided circles and squares into halves and fourths, beginning to learn what these fractions mean and remembering that the parts must always be equal. You can practice shapes with your child by looking for them in your home or neighborhood.

Sincerely,
Amy Czaja and Kendra Thomas

New Inquiry Unit: Homes

We have begun our next Inquiry unit on Homes. See the pictures below of what students already knew about homes and what they want to learn about this unit. For our first activity, students looked at a picture of an apartment building in Brooklyn and shared what they noticed. They then compared the urban apartment building to a photo of a suburban house. The students then used a venn diagram to compare their homes to the suburban house.

Volunteer to help with our school trip to Constantinople!

December 16th is our first trip for our reading Anytime Anywhere. We will be traveling back in time to Constantinople! Please use this sign up sheet to volunteer to help transform our school and make the day special for our students! http://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0f44afa72ba0f85-volunteer2

In keeping with the style of dress (Constantinople, 1450), all students are welcome to wear regal capes and crowns with their polos on Dec, 16th

Ms. Garcia had her baby! Meet our new 1A teacher while Ms. Garcia is on maternity leave: Emily Navaro

I am a native New Yorker born and raised on Staten Island. I received my Masters in Education from Wagner College and have taught middle school and elementary school science since. Prior to being in the classroom, I managed science curriculum development for multiple non-profits, including field studies and service learning for high school and middle schools students throughout the five boroughs. I am heavily involved in my community and have worked and volunteered for after school enrichment programs in Staten Island and here in downtown Brooklyn. My passion is environmental conservations and I am an avid outdoors woman and enjoy hiking and rowing on my family’s farm just outside of Binghamton, NY.

Donations for 3rd Grade Inquiry Project

You may be noticing boxes around the school in the next few weeks. The 3rd grade has been studying Children's Rights in Inquiry and 3B has decided to work on some projects in order to help children in the Brooklyn Community. 3B is currently putting on 3 separate "drives" and are looking for donations from our community. We wanted to send this information out in case you wanted to donate anything.

The students are putting on a toy drive that will be going now-Dec 14th. There is a box located on the 8th floor and we are looking for new toys still in their boxes that will be distributed amongst the Brooklyn community.

There is a coat drive that will is going now-Dec 16. There is a box located on the 9th floor and we are looking for children's coats. This coat drive is in partnership with New York Cares (you may have seen their ads in the subways).

The students are also doing a food drive that is going now-Jan 13. There is a box located on the 10th floor. The drive is in partnership with the City Harvest organization and is a part of a month long challenge amongst many schools in the New York area. We are looking for non-perishable food to be distributed throughout the community.

The 3rd grade thanks you for any donations you can give.

Open-minded student of the Week #1: Sandy

Sandy has demonstrated our learner profile for December: thinker. Thinkers think for themselves to make decisions and be creative when solving problems. Here are examples from his classmates of how Sandy showed that he is a thinker:

• Sandy is a thinker by always participating and raising his hand when the teacher asks us questions.
• He never says "no I don't want to do this" or "that's a boring question."
• When there's a problem at recess and just comes over and says "what's the problem" and he helps fix it.
• He always asks three or even four before the teacher.
• Sandy is a thinker by looking at other people's bodies to see how they feel.
• You have been a thinker by listening to the teacher, thinking of an answer and making decisions for yourself.

Thinker student of the Week #2: Simon

The following are examples from the class of how Simon is a thinker:

• Simon is a thinker by listening to the teacher and identifying kid problems and teacher problems.
• Simon is a thinker because whenever there is a problem that he can fix on his own, he knows he can fix it on his own.
• How Simon is a thinker is by when it is time to work and he doesn't know a problem, he works hard on it.
• When I was I was saying something mean to Simon, we had a power talk.
• Simon's a thinker because he's not always sharing his work with other people but doesn't tell them not to. He's just looking at his own paper and trying his best.
• Simon has been a thinker by not giving up and saying "I'm not doing this worksheet anymore."
• Simon is a thinker because when I made bad choices, he ignored them.

CONSTANTINOPLE NEXT FRIDAY — IN THE YEAR 1450 CE!

Dear Families,

We’ve been thinking deeply about how to share our trip to Constantinople with you all. The current plan is to invite you to experience the time machine with us on the Friday the 16th (during drop off).

Kindergarten and first grade parents can come upstairs and enjoy the exhibition that day, second grade parents may do so on Monday (12.19-20) and Tuesday, and third grade parents on Wednesday and Thursday (12.21-22). We will depart Constantinople at 4PM on Thursday Dec 22nd to travel back to the present.

Students may wear capes and crowns — along with their school uniform! Think Byzantine (gold and jewels). This should be fun!

Please sign HERE up to help make this adventure MAGICAL!!! Many thanks!

Music

Hello first grade families! Our Big Sing classes have been so fun this fall that we would like to invite you to come sing with us. Unfortunately, because of scheduling irregularities, in November and December we have only had two Big Sings, and there will not be any more until next year. Fear not! I will invite families to join a first grade Big Sing in early 2017.

Since I last wrote, the first graders have learned the songs “We Shall Not Be Moved” and “This Land Is Your Land,” and we spoke about how those songs relate to inclusivity, and to sticking by the values we hold dear at Brooklyn Prospect Charter School. We have also learned some play parties, which are a type of dance that is accompanied by the participants own singing. “Bow Wow Wow” was particularly popular with the first graders, partly because of the drama inherent in the song, and partly because students ended up with a new partner every ten seconds. We are rounding out 2016 by learning a bit about the culture of Constantinople, and making some music and creative dance that is inspired by that ancient culture.

As always, if you have any folk songs in your family that you would like to share with me, please get in touch! And feel free to contact me with questions about your children at any time. Thanks!

Growing en Español!

Everyday 1B amazes everyone with their knowledge, enthusiasm and all of the things they have accomplished during Spanish Time. During the past weeks, we have learned about our Familia and read the book René tiene dos apellidos (highly recommended). The book narrates a story based on the author's childhood as a young Salvadoran immigrant who was teased for having two last names. That incident inspired the main character to present his family tree to his class to celebrate his heritage. Inspired by this book 1B created their own Family Tree and each student did an oral presentation in Spanish! Check out the pictures!

Additionally, every Thursday is our Diccionario Day, where we are creating our own and first Spanish Dictionary. We love to learn new words and to challenge ourselves to pronounce them correctly. We are practicing our Rs a lot. Please continue to practice at home our ABC, songs and trabalenguas (tongue twisters).

Ps, Spanish Course is looking to expand its BOOK collection and resources. We would be very thankful for any Spanish book donations. It will also help us to travel back in Time - Anytime Anywhere!!!!!! Lets Read! ¡A leer!

Muchas Gracias,