Reading/Writing

READING
During whole-group reading we share stories together and strengthen both our vocabulary and reading comprehension skills.  Skills we work on in whole-group are carried into our small-group reading time.  During this time, small groups that are reading at the same level are pulled together for targeted instruction.  We will explore a variety of genres throughout the year.

DAILY 5
While I meet with small groups, students will participate in the Daily 5.  The Daily 5 activities include Read to Self, Read to Someone, Listen to Reading, Word Work, and Work on Writing.  Students choose what Daily 5 activities they wish to participate in that day.  By putting literacy learning into students' hands they receive a richer and more engaging learning experience.

WRITING WORKSHOP
Students will practice writing during our Writing Workshop.  Students will gather as a group to learn an aspect of the writing process.  They will then be given time to write independently, during which individual and small group conferences will be held.  At the end of our Writing Workshop time, we will often share our successes and struggles.  Students will learn to write in various formats and for various audiences.  At the end of each unit, the students will share their writing pieces with each other. 

Units of Writing
Small Moments (Personal Narratives)
Persuasive Writing
Nonfiction Writing
Informational Books
Opinion Writing

Fundations
For word work and handwriting, we will be using a program called Fundations  Fundations provides a systematic and explicit approach to reading and spelling. Your child will be learning about spelling patterns, word structure, and sentence structure.  This is the next level of the same program students used in Kindergarten. 

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NIGHTLY READING

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Reading each night is so important!  Books at your child's reading level will come home in their Reading Folder each night.  Make sure your child practices and returns these books, as we use them more than once in reading group.  Question your child about what they are reading to help check for understanding.  Your child's sight word book will also be in their reading folder each night so they can practice at school and at home.  More info on that book is below. 

If you are reading with your child and they get stuck on a word, you can help them decode the word by reminding them of our animal reading strategies.  Chunky Monkey, Lips the Fish, Flippy Dolphin -- they're catchy names for really helpful strategies that good readers use!





Sight Words
I believe sight word practice is a great way to use the some of the time you spend reading with your child each night!  Learning sight words can be TRICKY for a first grader - they defy most of the reading strategies we learn to decode new words.  Once learned, reading sight words is a huge confidence builder for our developing readers!  Additionally, knowing them automatically frees up their "reading energy" to be able to tackle new words using all their strategies.

In your child's reading folder you will find a sight word book with many different lists.  These lists break down the sight words into smaller chunks to focus on.  Everyone will be working at their own level to make their way through their books.  Please practice these books every night at home - just the level you child is currently on.  You can also make flash cards to practice too.  You can find a list of all the words here:  http://www.dolchsightwords.org/dolch_word_list.php.  In first grade, we focus on the pre-primer, primer and first grade list.

Visit Mrs. Perkin's Dolch Words website for activities to help learn sight words!