Sunday, April 14, 2013

Technology Savy: Flower Diagrams

The students created diagrams on flowers on the computer using Pixie 2 software. They used the various painting and clipart features to create their pictures. They then used text boxes and our class Brace Map to label and write about the function of each part. All of their diagrams can be seen on their KidBlog. The students export their work independently as I model it on the Promethean Board and then upload their work into their own blog.

Animals and Their Offspring

In science the students have been learning how adult animals and their offsprings resemble each other through physical and behavioral characteristics. As a part of their lessons, the students created a foldable to go along with the book Are You My Mother? by P.D. Eastman. The students created a two-flap foldable. On the top flap they drew a picture of an offspring and then quizzed their partner about what animal would be its mother.

Addition Connect Four: Math Fact Practice

To help the students practice their addtion math facts, I created a game called Addition Connect Four. The students work in partners to roll two dice. They add the two dice together and cover up the corresponding number sentence. The first partner to cover four number sentences in a row wins. You can download the file at my TpT store.

Sunflowers: Writing to Inform

Using PebbleGo, we learned about a specific type of flower: the sunflower. The students then used what they learned to answer various questions on a Tree Map. Using the Tree Map, they wrote a shared writing to tell what they learned about the flower. Shared writing, or interactive writing, is when the students take turns writing and give each other verbal help as they write. After writing, we had a mini art lesson on how to draw a simple sunflower.

Garden Research: Expert Guest

We are very fortunate to have a garden expert as a part of our school community. One of the grandparents at our school owns a local garden store and volunteered her time to come answer questions for our students as a part of their research. She brought in various plants for them to explore, explained the needs of specific plants, and then answered their questions. The students then went back to class and wrote down answers they found to their questions on their research handouts.

Garden Research: Non-Fiction Texts

In reading the students have been researching the garden habitat. The study goes along with our science lessons over the interdependence of animals and plants as well as the study of plant parts and functions. The students worked in small groups to answer various questions they had about either bugs in the garden habitat or plants in the garden habitat. They had to find answers using various non-fiction texts such as dictionaries and encyclopedias.

Thank you, Ms. Willemin!

Our class was very fortunate to have a student teacher with us for about four weeks. Ms. Willemin taught many fantastic lessons and we will miss her greatly. Congratulations Ms. Willemin upon your upcoming graduation and good luck on your job search. You will be a great teacher for a lucky school!

Blue Jays: Writing to Inform

The students used PebbleGo to research Blue Jays as a part of a lesson on writing to inform. They recorded various facts on a Circle Map and then used those facts to answer questions on a Tree Map. They then used the Tree Map to help them write their sentences. Each student edited and revised their writing, with the help of their teachers. Their final drafts, along with a colored copy of a Blue Jay, were added to our garden habitat display.

Rosie Sprout's Time to Shine

In reading we read Rosie Sprout's Time to Shine to work on comparing character traits. After reading the book the class created a Double Bubble Map to compare the two main character's traits and then they created a graphic organizer for one of the characters.

Interdependence of Plants and Animals

To assess their understanding of the interdependence of plants and animals, the students created posters to show how at least one animal depends on a plant in the garden habitat.

Addition and Subtraction with Bar-Type Graphs

Ms. Willemin taught the students how to use information on a Bar-Type Graph to add and subtract. Using the Promethean Board to display various graphs, she asked them different questions to compare data by adding or subtracting.


All of the first grade teachers taught a combined lesson on how to build a terrarium. The lesson was a part of our study on the interdependence of plants and animals. Each class built a terrarium out of a 2 liter coke bottle. Student volunteers filled the container with soil, followed by the flower plant, followed by more soil, and then water. Last the teachers assisted the students in placing the top on the terrariums. The terrariums are being kept in the sunshine of our science lab. The students created foldables to draw and write about the steps they took to create the terrariums.

Celery Experiment

To teach the students how water travels through the stem from the roots, we conducted a celery experiment. In one cup we placed plain water. In another cup we placed water with blue food coloring. We inserted celery stalks into each cup and left them over night to see what would happen. The next day the students were surprised to see that the celery had turned blue.

Egg Hunt

In March, First Grade held our annual egg hunt. Thank you to the parents for brining in so many eggs. The students raced around to find eggs and then were treated to popcorn and juice.

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