Life looks different today. Instead of being in a traditional classroom, we are safe at home, learning in a Google Classroom. And while I am very proud of my first graders and the wonderful work they've been doing, the most important thing is that the students feel safe and are enjoying this time they have with their families.
First grade has been having some mystery reader fun! First, we were surprised by a reader who read Hi! Fly Guy by Tedd Arnold. This book tells the story of how Buzz meets his best friend and pet, Fly Guy. The funny story is a feel-good story about friendship with great illustrations! The students were also excited to see that it won the Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor award, an award they learned about in library. Our next mystery reader helped us get excited for Easter by reading Here Comes Peter Cottontail. The classic book tells the story of how a young bunny gets chosen as the Easter Bunny, but an evil bunny challenges him to an Easter egg challenge. They go on a egg-delivering contest through all the holidays, full of joy and silliness. Both readers ended the day with special snacks for the kids. First graders love mystery readers!
We've been learning in some really fun ways in first grade! Today was Read Across America Day. We started the day with a local author and illustrator presenting their book to us about two therapy dogs touring the town of Hanover. Then we visited each teacher from PreK to fourth grade who read us a book and did an activity with us that reminded us of the book. We made crafts, did a rhyming activity, and even played extreme rock, paper, scissors. While some pictures below are from Read Across America Day, there are also pictures from last week, including a science lesson we did in the gym learning about dinosaurs that are carnivores, herbivores, and omnivores; gym class where we learned golf; and a math activity we did with partners using dice. Having fun while learning is the best!
The students had so much fun at Ms. Pam's winter carnival today! Our volunteers helped us play games, win tickets, and pick lots of good prizes! They also made everyone cotton candy and popcorn! We are blessed to have Ms. Pam and all the wonderful volunteers! Here are some important upcoming dates:
February 21st: Yearbook orders due
February 26th: Ash Wednesday Mass 8:30
March 2nd: Read Across America Day (Students will have a book read to them by each teacher and a special project done for each book)
March 11th: Report Cards distributed
March 19th: Mass (first graders will read and take up gifts)
March 27th: Dress Down Day for the missions $1
April 22nd: First grade field trip
We had a great Catholic Schools Week! The students did games in the gym on Monday and enjoyed a soft pretzel snack thanks to Home and School! On Tuesday, the students dressed up as what they want to be when they grow up and they played many games with their prayer partners in the classrooms. (Unfortunately, I didn't get pics of those two days because I was home sick.) Wednesday we had the Jump Rope for Heart and celebrated our 100th Day of School with lots of math fun! Thursday, we enjoyed a wacky dress down day and a Lego challenge. Friday, we ended our fun-filled week with Mass and lunch with our parents. It was all great fun!
Here are some of the important things to remember for Catholic Schools Week:
Sunday, January 26th: Opening Day Mass 9:00 am; students are asked to wear their school uniforms if you are attending this Mass at St. Joseph Church
Monday, January 27th: Students dress down in Shamrock Spirit wear, gym pants, and sneakers for gym games and pep rally; Home and School is providing soft pretzels.
Tuesday, January 28th: Students dress like the career they want to be when they grow up; First grade will play games in the classroom with their prayer partners; There is a skating party at Magic Elm from 6:00 - 8:00 pm.
Wednesday, January 29th: First grade dresses in red with sneakers and gym pants for Jump Rope for Heart; This is also the 100th day of school.
Thursday, January 30th: Students dress down in mismatched, wacky outfits; They will participate in a Lego STREAM challenge so they should dress comfortable enough to get down and work on the floor..
Friday, January 31st: Students wear school uniforms; There is an open house from 9:30 to 10:00; Mass is at 10:30 with a parent luncheon following in the school cafeteria.
A few other upcoming reminders: February 13th will be our Valentine's Day party. Students may bring in cards or small snacks to be handed out to their classmates, but if it's a snack, it must be individually wrapped to go home. If you want to provide something for the party, please email me and I'll let you know what we need.
Also, if you haven't yet signed up to be a mystery reader, please do so soon, so we make sure everybody gets to have a turn. As always, thanks for everything you do to help your student succeed in first grade!
What a week! We've only been back for a week and two days and we've already had our first snow day. I've had great feedback from the students about the first snow packet and I've had 100% of my students return them. Please notice on the snow packets that in the Social Studies/Science section, only one lesson needs to be done. Many students did both, which is fine, but as we move to the next packet, the option is any of the new Social Studies or Science lessons, or anyone that you haven't completed from previous packets. This allows students to pick one they are interested in.
We have started our mid-year testing in language arts and math and the students are enjoying the work in the reading and math centers while waiting to be tested (below are some pictures). We are learning about local animals and if they hibernate, adapt, or migrate for the winter. We are learning place value in math, and we continue to read and write as often as we can. Please remember if you haven't yet signed up to be a mystery reader, this year is going fast and I'm afraid the spots will fill up before you sign up, so email me some dates soon! Here are some important upcoming dates:
January 20th: No school: Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
January 24th: Dress Down Day $1
January 26th - 31st: Catholic Schools Week
January 26th: Catholic Schools Week Opening Mass at 9 am (students are encouraged to wear their school uniforms to this Mass)
January 28th: School Skate at 6 pm at Magic Elm
January 31st: Closing Mass at 8:30 for Catholic Schools Week
February 14th - 17th: No school: President's Weekend
First grade had lots of fun preparing for Christmas and have earned a nice long break to relax and celebrate the birth of our Savior!. In addition to the Holidays around the World Christmas show, we had a visit from Santa, we met with our prayer partners to read Christmas books and have a snowball fight, we performed Las Posadas throughout the school, and we met with our prayer partners again to make Christmas trees. We studied the story of the birth of our Savior, we made snowmen fact families, and we did several Christmas writing projects. We made ornaments for our parents with 4 acts of service on them for the 4 weeks of Advent and we had a great Christmas party.
(Below the slideshow of our Christmas fun, you will find a list of important upcoming dates for the new year.)
Important upcoming dates:
January 2nd - Welcome back to school!
January 8th - School Mass 8:30 am
January 20th - No school for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
January 26th to 30th - Catholic Schools Week
We've had two mystery readers helping us get into the Christmas spirit this year. First, our mystery reader taught us all about a Swedish Christmas. He brought in traditional decorations and a St. Lucia crown. He also shared special Swedish soda that is only sold in Advent and Lent and Swedish Christmas cookies. The students loved experiencing a Swedish Christmas, especially the sweet soda! Our next reader read "A Wish to be a Christmas Tree" by Colleen Monroe, a charming book about a tree that dreams of being a Christmas tree but keeps getting passed up. In the end, his forest friends surprise him by turning him into a Christmas tree. Our reader then shared Christmas tree cakes with the students. Both readers really helped us get into the Christmas spirit!
Remember, our Christmas party is Friday, December 20th. If you would like to provide something for the party, please email me and I'll let you know what we need.
The first graders came back from Thanksgiving break to lots of Christmas fun. We have an Elf on the Shelf named Snowflake Cuddles. The students are enjoying the train, the Little People nativity scene, the dancing Santa, and many other Christmas decorations. The students have created their name in lights, made gingerbread men, and even wrote a Christmas story about who would fly Santa's sleigh if his reindeer were sick. We were even visited by St. Nick! This time of year, we are working hard on reading and discussing stories in our Journeys anthology, learning contractions, compound words, grammar, and punctuation, and spelling words with digraphs and suffixes. We are doing subtraction and fact families in math. We are learning the story of Jesus, starting with why God sent us a savior and how God chose Mary. Here are some important upcoming dates:
December 9th: Christmas concert - doors open at 5:30
December 11th: Flexible Instructional Day packets will be sent home
December 20th: Christmas party (If your students would like to hand something out, that's fine, but it has to be individually wrapped and ready to be sent home; if you'd like to provide a snack for the party, please email me.) Early Dismissal 11:45
December 21st - January 1st: Christmas break
Welcome to First Grade!
Hello! I am Stacey Biggins, the first grade teacher at St. Joseph School. I am so excited to be teaching first grade! If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me by e-mail or by sending a note with your child. I can also be reached at the school office by calling 717-632-0118. By working together, we will all have a blessed school year!
Email Mrs. Biggins
First Grade Specials
Tuesday: Computer and Spanish