This week we began reading some "trickster tales" to connect to our studies of character traits and the moral of a story. We began with the story "Anansi and the Moss Covered Rock" retold by Eric A. Kimmel. Students learned that character of Anansi originates from the folklore of West Africa and the Caribbean where he plays the role of the "trickster" in several different stories. Typically, Anansi's deceptive and greedy nature is used to teach a lesson. In this story, Anansi finds a magical rock that causes other characters to become unconscious if they repeat the magical words near it. Once these characters became unconscious in the story Anansi runs back to the other animals house and steals their food. In the end of the story we learn that there was a deer watching all of this happen and uses Anansi's trick on him and returns the food to the animals that it belonged to in the beginning. As a class we were able to find character traits for both Anansi (trickster, lazy, greedy, intelligent) and the deer (intelligent, patient, kind, thoughtful, brave) at the end of the story. We also discussed the moral of the story and reviewed that the moral of a story is the lesson that the author wants the reader to learn after reading the story. First graders are eager to read more "trickster tales" and find the moral of those stories.
In writing we continued to focus on making our introductions catch our reader's interest but also learned about ways to close our writing. We made some charts after learning about different ways that could support our openings and closings in our opinion writing pieces:
This week our class learned about fractions with shapes. We worked on the following common core standard:
1.G.A.3 Partition circles and rectangles into two and four equal shares, describe the shares using the words halves, fourths, and quarters, and use the phrases half of, fourth of, and quarter of. Describe the whole as two of, or four of the shares. Understand for these examples that decomposing into more equal shares creates smaller shares.
Student Friendly Objective: I can split circles and rectangles into halves and fourths and compare the sizes of those pieces.
Students first learned that a fraction is a part of a whole. Then, students practiced using a 4 inch by 4 inch square paper to fold into equal parts (into halves and then later in quarters) as they heard a story about a brother and sister who made sandwiches for lunch and cut them into equal pieces. Students discovers that there was not only one way to equally divide the shapes into different pieces some folded horizontally, some diagonally, some vertically and some used a combination of folds. We also practiced writing the fraction out and learned that the top part of the fraction is the number of parts being talked about while the bottom number show how many equal parts the whole has been broken into. We will continue this study on fractions into next week using other various shapes.
Additionally, some small groups of students enjoyed practicing their 3 dimensional skills by building a castle using three dimensional shapes and then writing about what shapes they used and how many of them. This helped the first graders work on these tricky vocabulary words while also learning how to put multiple shapes together to make a different shape.
Students continued to discover what causes sound by exploring a tuning fork with a wooden block, a small cup of water and a ping pong ball hanging from a string. We found that after hitting the tuning fork on the wooden block a high pitched sound (like a bell) came from it and we knew from our previous studies in sound that it was vibrating in a back-and-fourth movement. We put the tuning fork into water when it was still making the sound from hitting it on the block and it actually splashed the water right out of the cup with the vibrations! It was also able to tap and bounce a ping pong ball hanging from a string. We also used a pitch-tuning device and put cheerios on a tray on top and watched them move when the sound was on and vibrating them around! We observed what happened when the pitch was low and when it was high.
Wednesday, March 21st: Ice Cream Day, students can purchase ice cream during lunch for $3.00.
Wednesday, March 28th: Early dismissal, 1:00pm.
Wednesday, March 28th: Parent/teacher conferences, 4:00pm-8:00pm
Thursday, March 29th: Parent/teacher conferences 8:00am-noon
Friday, March 30th: No school
Saturday, March 31- Sunday, April 8th: Spring Break, no school
Monday April, 9th: School resumes