Miss Drake's Newsletter

October

Important Information

Parents, I am so thankful for your support at home and for your willingness and dedication toward helping your child become a successful reader. Thank you!


I was very happy to see so many of you at Parent-Teacher Conferences last month! Those of you whom I could not meet with I sent home a packet of information with your student. Please let me know if you have any questions or would like to speak to me further regarding your child's progress.


One huge skill that all students are working on is their accuracy. Students reading level A-L text have to have at least 95% accuracy. Students reading L-Z text have to have at least 98% accuracy. Accuracy is the amount of words students read correctly, and a huge part of that is how many times the students will go back and fix words they said wrong (self-corrections). While reading with your child, please point out any mistakes that they don't catch.


At the end of First Quarter, teachers reported new reading levels for all of their students. Based on these reading levels, Mrs. Thomas and I have regrouped our students to better meet their needs. Students may have switched between Mrs. Thomas and I, and some students were released. Each of my reading groups voted on a new group name. Please ask your child what the name of his or her group is. Then you can scroll down below to find the details of what your child and I worked on during the past month. If your child cannot remember the name of his or her group, please contact me and I'll be happy to let you know what it is!

Kindergarten-Fruit Loops

We are continuing to work on beginning literacy skills such as: segmenting, blending, rhyming, letter names and letter sounds. The new letters we have been focused on are: p, b, a, and d. The students have each practiced writing these letters in write and wipe books, played Swat It!, and listened to read alouds and letter songs. We are still using our "yellow brick road" to help reinforce all letter sounds taught thus far. We are also doing a few Pathways to Reading activities during the week such as, ABC Point and Sing and Bubble Gum Stretching. Students are bringing different activities home each night such as books, flashcards, and frog games to practice working with letters.

First Grade- Giraffes

Our group has switched to a program called Fountas and Pinnell Leveled Literacy Intervention, while still using Pathways to Reading to reinforce phonic and phonemic awareness skills. Each student is able to Say Vowel Town on their own, so now we are practicing Say it/Cover it and spelling each of the vowel sounds. Parents, please keep practicing saying and spelling the sounds on the Vowel Town page sent home. If you need a new page, please let me know. One great activity that you can do with your child is to call out a vowel sound and see if your child can find that sound/spelling on Vowel Town.


We started reading books on a Level C as that is where these students should be reading at this point in the year. As part of the F&P LLI system, students take home a book to read each night that has been previously read in class. Please ask your students to read at home. Any books read can be written on the log, as well as any other reading the student has done- close caption the TV, have your student read road signs or recipes, or even the directions for a game!

First Grade- Hawkeyes

We have created a new group: First Grade math students have named themselves the "Hawkeyes" after their favorite superhero. Students in this group are learning to compose and decompose numbers in order to more easily understand addition and subtraction strategies. We have started by learning all the ways we can make 10. Students are learning number families (ex. 7, 3, and 10 are a family) so that they are easily able to find 10s everyday.


One way we are learning to do this is by using our Triangle Flash Cards. Each student has a set here at school, and most students asked to bring a set home as well. (Parents, they are pink triangles; please ask your child if they brought some home!) To use these flash cards, hold them so that one of the numbers is covered by a finger, then have students try to figure out what number is hidden by your finger. Our goal is for students to recognize that the three numbers are part of a 'family'.

Second Grade- Jawbreakers

This group is using a reading program called Fountas and Pinnell Leveled Literacy Intervention. Students are reading Level G text. Second Grade students at this point in the school year should be reading at a Level I. The main skills students have practiced this month were: self-monitoring while reading, self-correct consistently, compose several sentences about a topic (using appropriate capitalization, punctuation, and spacing), recognize high-frequency words quickly, and saying words slowly and write letters to represent the sounds in sequence.

Second Grade- Hershey Bars

This group is using a reading program called Fountas and Pinnell Leveled Literacy Intervention with Level G text. Second Grade students at this point in the school year should be reading at a Level I. Students worked on reading accuracy throughout the month and strengthened their skills of self-monitoring and self-correcting while reading. We also worked on writing about our reading and practiced composing several sentences about a topic (using appropriate capitialization, punctuation, and spacing). To decode unknown words, students practiced using beginning consonant clusters and word endings to solve words and to take apart longer words by breaking them down into syllables.

Second Grade- Spidermen

We have created a new group: Second Grade math students have named themselves the "Spidermen" after their favorite superhero. Students in this group are learning to compose and decompose numbers in order to more easily understand addition and subtraction strategies. We have started by learning all the ways we can make 10. Students are learning number families (ex. 7, 3, and 10 are a family) so that they are easily able to find 10s everyday.


These students are also practicing Fact Fluency on the computer using a website called Xtramath.org. We have started with addition, and our goal is to be able to add numbers up to 100 in less than 7 seconds! When we reach that goal, we will move on to subtraction. You can help out at home by having your child log on to XtraMath and practice at home. Even 5 minutes can make an improvement in your child's math skills!


To log in, you will need:

my email address: Jessica.Drake@Raypec.org

your child's first name: Firstname

your child's pin number: I have sent an email containing this pin, but if you can't find it, let me know and I will email again.



Another website to practice math at home (that the kids love!) is called Sumdog. Each student can create their own avatar and use it to play games against their friends, their class, or other students worldwide. We are not using this in class (except as a reward), but you are welcome to play at home to improve your student's math skills!


To play at home, you will need:

Your child's username: Their first and last initial then the letter a

Your child's password: Each child is to memorize theirs, it is a common word and a two digit number. If your child cannot remember their password, please email me.

The school code: pe-raypec

Third Grade- Apples

Our group worked on reading Level L books during the month using a reading program called Fountas and Pinnell Leveled Literacy Intervention. Third Grade students at this point in the school year should be reading at a Level M. Students worked on reading accuracy throughout the month and became more proficient at self-monitoring while reading. Another major focus of our group time was reading comprehension. We worked on using text evidence to support answers and rereading text in order to find important details in the story that can help us make inferences. We also worked on writing about our reading and sequenced events in a story.

Third Grade- Pears

Our group worked on reading Level M books during the month using a reading program called Fountas and Pinnell Leveled Literacy Intervention. Third Grade students at this point in the school year should be reading at a Level M. While many students in this group can decode words at this level, some are not yet ready to pass Level M because of their reading comprehension. We spent a heavy amount of time working on comprehension this past month. Students also worked on reading accuracy throughout the month and became more proficient at self-monitoring while reading (noticing errors quickly and working to fix them). When writing, we had several goals: write with good spacing between words, start a sentence with an uppercase letter, write ending punctuation, and using our guides to spell words correctly.

Third Grade- Captain America

The Third Grade math students have re-named themselves the "Captains of America" after their favorite superhero. Students in this group are learning to compose and decompose numbers in order to more easily understand addition and subtraction strategies. We have started by learning all the ways we can make 10. Students are learning number families (ex. 7, 3, and 10 are a family) so that they are easily able to find 10s everyday.


These students are also practicing Fact Fluency on the computer using a website called Xtramath.org. We have started with addition, and our goal is to be able to add numbers up to 100 in less than 7 seconds! When we reach that goal, we will move on to subtraction! You can help out at home by having your child log on to XtraMath and practice at home. Even 5 minutes can make an improvement in your child's math skills!


To log in, you will need:

my email address: Jessica.Drake@Raypec.org

your child's first name: Firstname

your child's pin number: I have sent an email containing this pin, but if you can't find it, let me know and I will email again.



Another website to practice math at home (that the kids love!) is called Sumdog.com. Each student can create their own avatar and use it to play games against their friends, their class, or other students worldwide. We are not using this in class (except as a reward), but you are welcome to play at home to improve your student's math skills!


To play at home, you will need:

Your child's username: Their first and last initial then the letter a

Your child's password: Each child is to memorize theirs, it is a common word and a two digit number. If your child cannot remember their password, please email me.

The school code: pe-raypec

Fourth Grade- Dragonflies

We are using a program called Houghton Mifflin, and the books in this program are not leveled, but they are below grade level. Fourth Grade students at this point in the school year should be reading at a Level P. We are reading about one book a week on average, and focusing on vocabulary and comprehension as we go. We also write about our reading every day. Each book in this program has a specific comprehension focus. Here are some of the books and their focus: The Math Bee (sequence of events), A Breath of Fresh Air (making inferences), Two Cold Ears (making generalizations), Two-Star Day (categorizing and classifying information). We are currently working on The Birthday Party (identifying elements of a script and writing a script). Students are working hard and putting forth their best effort when writing.

Fourth Grade- Bumblebees

We are using a program called Houghton Mifflin, and the books in this program are not leveled, but they are below grade level. Fourth Grade students at this point in the school year should be reading at a Level P. We are reading about one book a week on average, and focusing on vocabulary and comprehension as we go. We also write about our reading every day. Each book in this program has a specific comprehension focus. Here are some of the books and their focus: The Math Bee (sequence of events), A Breath of Fresh Air (making inferences), Two Cold Ears (making generalizations), Two-Star Day (categorizing and classifying information). We are currently working on The Birthday Party (identifying elements of a script and writing a script). Students are working hard and putting forth their best effort when writing.