Friday, November 7, 2014

Grimm 11/7/2014

PK-1 Principal/Director of Teaching & Learning
Sara Grimm
Twitter:  saramarleygrimm
SKYPE:  saramarleygrimm

Thank you to all parents for your flexibility during our dismissal on Wednesday, Nov. 5. Once we found out about the potential gas leak at the high school we quickly made plans to keep your children safe. Your understanding and cooperation with the alternate pick-up points went very well. Thank you for your help. What an awesome example of cooperation and patience as we got students to where they needed to be!

One of the critical pieces in your child’s education is learning to read and understand what they have read. Sometimes the best way to help kids understand what they are reading is to help them make connections to the story and to talk about it. Some strategies that we use in school include:

Determine Important Information
When students read, they should pick out the most important ideas. The most important ideas are the ones the author wants readers to remember.

Compare and Contrast
When we compare certain things, we tell how they are alike or the same. When we contrast things, we tell how they are different!!

Make Inferences
Making inferences helps readers make sense of what they read. Sometimes the author doesn't tell us everything we need to understand. We can use clues in the story and what we already know to help fill in gaps, which the author has left in the text. This is called MAKING INFERENCES!

Identify Text Structure
Stories are set up in different ways. They usually are told in sequence, or the order in which events happen. Knowing how a story is set up, or its structure, can help a reader remember the story.

Identify Details & Facts
Finding small bits of information that tells us more about important ideas.

Making Predictions
Using clues from the story and what you already know to guess what will happen next.

Tell in your own words what has happened in the story or text.

Ask and Answer Questions
Asking questions and looking for answers in the text or pictures will help you to understand what you read!

Facts and Opinions
Facts can be proven! They are TRUE!
Opinions are people's thoughts. They might not be true! When giving an opinion, you might hear "I think...."

Monitor Comprehension
Stop and think about what you are reading. Are you understanding what you are reading? If not, use an accuracy strategy to help.

Recall and Retell
Tell about the setting, characters and most important events in the beginning, middle, and end of the text. Readers gain a better understanding of what a story is about when they can recall events from a story.

Make Connections
Use what you already know to understand what you are reading. We use text to text connections. We use text to self connections. And we use text to world connections.

"The passion for learning is not something you have to inspire kids to have; it’s something you have to keep from extinguishing.”            ~Unknown

This week our preschoolers continued to investigate pumpkins and other fall crops. The students were able to look at and compare pumpkins, gourds, and Indian corn. In the discovery center some students were able to use small hammers and golf tees to pound designs into pumpkins. The students also helped carve a pumpkin into a Jack-o-Lantern. They decided which shapes to use to make the face and then they helped clean out the inside of the pumpkin.

As a district preschool program we have come up with three expectations as part of PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions Supports) that will be used in every preschool classroom. The three expectations are Be Kind, Be Safe, and Be Respectful. Over the next few weeks the preschool teachers and students will discuss what each of these expectations mean and how they would look in our classroom. The students will help come up with rules for the classroom and parts of our day that fall under each of these expectations.

Mrs. Marr’s classroom had their 5th grade buddy class come to visit last week. The buddies read together, painted a picture, and shared a snack.


Kindergarten started to talk about hibernation this week. Angela Breis, Howard County Naturalist, presented “Animals in Winter”. The children learned the three ways animals survive the winter months. The animals migrate, adapt, or hibernate. All kindergarten students will hear this presentation.

Some kindergarten students are brushing up on their Skype skills with Mrs. Shekleton.

Kindergarten students love taking books off of the shelf and reading them. They have done a lot of talking and training regarding how to handle a book, what it looks like to read a book (read the pictures, read the words, or retell the story from memory). They love reading!

First Grade
Many first grade students have been given the opportunity to “show what they know”. They are helping their friends to learn things. Here some students are learning from each other how to record their inquiry projects using Showbie.

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