This week with our Wonders program our Essential Question is: How do we measure time? We will be reading A Second is a Hiccup by Hazel Hutchins. Understanding the passage of time can be a very abstract concept. How long is a second? A minute? How about an hour? This book will help to explain these units of time with examples that we can understand and apply. A second is how long it takes to hiccup...a week is seven sleeps.
Our phonics focus is the long vowel Aa with the spelling pattern of a-e (magic e). We will be practicing a lot with this new concept. Confusion creeps in when we start to sound out these words. We have spent so many weeks on short vowels (words with a consonant-vowel-consonant such as cat, dog) and have mastered this concept. Now we will be learning that with a “magic e” at the end of the word, the vowel now says its name...a new sound to apply. Our spelling words follow three a_e spelling patterns (ake, ame, ate):
Our two new high-frequency words are: some, today. We will also focus on these additional high-frequency words: away, now, way, why.
Number Sense is so important and we will continue to focus on it. When children understand numbers and operations along with the ability to use this understanding in flexible ways to make mathematical judgments and to develop useful strategies for solving complex problems then they are developing number sense. Researchers note that number sense develops gradually, and varies as a result of exploring numbers, visualizing them in a variety of contexts, and relating them in ways that are not limited by traditional algorithms. Developing an understanding of numbers, ways of representing numbers, relationships among numbers, and number systems are focus areas of our math curriculum.
First graders move from developing basic counting techniques to understanding number size and relationships, place value, and operations. They develop this understanding at different rates. First graders can easily count 32 objects, but they do not always see that 32 is three groups of ten and 2 ones. Through repeated practice they are beginning to understand that they can group objects into tens and ones and understand their numerical representation. So…we practice and practice and practice these skills.
This week with our Everyday Mathematics program we will investigate place-value concepts for tens and ones. Last week before vacation we learned a new game. Using manipulatives we have been playing the Place Value Game to help reinforce this new skill. Ask your child tell you about this game. Here is some information for you about the Base Ten Blocks that we are using.
The Base Ten Blocks provide a spatial model of our base ten number system. The smallest blocks are units, these represent the number 1. The long, narrow blocks are called longs or rods and represent the number ten. Eventually we will be getting to flats, which represent 100 and even the largest cube which represent 1,000.
As a result, your children are understanding that the number 32 consists of three longs (30) and two units: 30 + 2 = 32.
We will be reading and doing math extensions with three outstanding books that will help us with number sense. A Place for Zero, by Angeline Sparagna LoPresti, Doggone Dogs! by Karen Beaumont, and Equal Shmequal by Virginia Kroll. Stay tuned!
Our trip down to the Food Pantry was wonderful. Thank you for all of your donations. The cupboards were overflowing when we left.