Wednesday, October 26, 2011


This week UES launched school-wide positive behavior effort (Vermont Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports program). Simply, in addition to building community in our classroom and helping students learn, practice and meet the goals of CARES, our school is observing and acknowledging positive student behaviors in action. If you are interested in learning more about VTPBIS visit:

Students receive Hoots as an acknowledge of an individual or group positive behavior in the classroom, the hallway, at recess, lunch, etc - anywhere at UES during the school day! They are small green cards that any staff/faculty or administrator can give to a child who demonstrates CARES behavior. When each class has earned 100 Hoots, the whole group receives recognition through a certificate and a visit from our district mascot Screech the Owl. We are hoping he visits us tomorrow... stay tuned.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

NAP and Debris Shelters

We will head to Hubbard Park tomorrow for NAP. We will begin to learn about debris shelters, and may even start to construct our own. For more information about shelters, check this link:

We welcome any adults to join us for this outdoor learning experience! Berenice and Kristen are planning to join us. We will leave Union at 11:30 and will be near the sledding hill. Please listen for us!!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

New Math Workplaces

Spin and Write
We have been working in Unit 2 of Bridges Math.  Our focus in this unit is on counting, computation, and patterning.  We are working for the first 9 sessions on addition and subtraction. We will then focus on growing patterns and quilts. New workplaces have been introduced with this unit. They are keeping everyone busy, and are really keeping some first grade brains busy.

Bugs in the Garden Addition

Spin and Write -with  skinny markers

Sorting Sea Creatures

Button Addition

Odd and Even Addition

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Conference Schedule

I cannot wait to see you and your child at our conference!

Thursday October 20, 2011

3:10- Lillian
3:50- Molly

Friday October 21,2011
11:00- Maria
12:50- Cameron
1:10- Isaac

Monday, October 17, 2011

What a Weekend!

I was able to travel with my family to Washington DC last weekend to see our oldest daughter who has just started college at GWU. We had a great time in the city, and also got to see the new memorial to Martin Luther King Jr.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

First Grade Classroom Rules

Last week, we looked over hopes and dreams for first grade, and discussed how to achieve these goals. As a group, we then listed the rules for our classroom that would be most helpful. As you can see, first graders had many great ideas to keep the learning safe, fun and productive. You will be getting a copy of these rules to sign with your child, and to return to school. I will then send another copy home for you to keep as a reference.

Please take some time to look over these rules with your first grader!

Our class agrees to:
1. Respect Everyone
-be nice
-say nice things
-have a pleasant face
2. Be Safe
    -hands to self
    -feet to self
    -have a self space bubble
    -respect bubbles
3. Listen
    -look at the speaker
    -calm body
4. Be Flexible
- say “ok”
-try your best

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Dates to Remember

Wednesday, October 19  6:30 -7:30
Open House – Families are invited to come and take a tour of the classroom as well as other learning spaces in the school such as the: gym, art room, music room, or library.

Thursday, October 20  All Day
In-service, teachers will be attending an all day math workshop. No school for students.Some conferences will be held in the late afternoon.

Friday, October 21
Student -Led  20 minute conferences with families by appointment.No school for students.

Wednesday, October 26
School picture -retake day

Monday, October 31 8:20-12:20?
Field trip to Flynn Theater to see "Henry and Mudge"- details to follow

Monday, October 10, 2011

Sight Word Practice

 Click here for slideshow!

Student- Led Conferences Next Week

Please check your child's folder for a purple conference sign up form. I have included quite a few choices for conference times between Thursday(October 20th)afternoon, and evening,  and Friday( October 21st) morning and  afternoon. Please let me know if we will need to find an alternate time. This year, your child will be leading the conference. Here are a few tips to help make these conferences successful:

·        Express positive interest and anticipation about the upcoming conference.
·        Be on time.
·        Listen and respond to the student (not the teacher)
·        Express pride in growth and progress.
·        Ask questions (see below for samples)
·        Be positive, offering to help in areas where improvement is needed.
·        Recognize that students need to develop independence in communicating progress – the teacher will be there to facilitate and answer specific questions but will not take charge of the conference.


·        Can you explain this to me?
·        How did you come up with this idea?
·        How have you grown in this area?
·        How can you improve in this area?
·        How can we help you at home?
·        What was important to you about this?
·        If you could do this work over again, how would you change it?
·        What future goals do you have as a student?

Friday, October 7, 2011

Bridges Math Program

We have been busy in the month of October with many activites to build number sense. We have looked at patterns, and created a pattern for our calender. Can you figure out whether a starfish(red), or crab(yellow) would come next?
Our lesson today involved a bin of buttons. First, each student sorted their own pile by color. Then we combined piles and labeled them by color.
 Finally, we had to determine, which color pile had the most buttons.the class agreed that there were many more gold buttons, than any other color.The lining up method seemed to work best to determine quantity.(notice the pile of gold buttons still left for the line up).

 Next week we will be using buttons for number combinations. Our learning will revolve around the question: How many ways can you use two different colored buttons to make combinations of 6?

Monday, October 3, 2011

Local Authors Who Write for Kids

My friend Jane from Bear Pond Books, just sent me an e-mail with information about local author events:

LINDA URBAN- Saturday October 8th at 11 am for Hound Dog True"Urban (A Crooked Kind of Perfect) traces a highly self-conscious child's cautious emergence from her shell in this tender novel about new beginnings and "small brave" acts... Urban's understated, borderline naïf narrative gives voice to Mattie's many uncertainties while expressing the quiet yet significant moments in her day-to-day life. Mattie's growing trust of others and her attempts to be "bold and friendly" lead to gratifying rewards for Mattie and poignant moments for readers.."—Publishers Weekly, starred review
KATHERINE & JOHN PATERSON- Saturday, October 22nd at 11 am for The Flint HeartA reimagined version of a fairy tale originally written by Eden Phillpott in 1910, with wonderfully bold illustrations by John Rocco. "A grand tale skillfully updated and tightened up, this should win the hearts of a new generation." -Kirkus, starred review
STORYTELLING & LEFTOVERS,  a Post-Thanksgiving Author Jamboree- Friday, November 25th at 11 am
Including: Leda Schubert, David Martin, Beth Kannell, Reeve Lindbergh and Kate Messner, all of whom have new books this fall!! For more information about this event contact me at the address below.
Hope to see you in the bookstore soon, and Happy Fall.

Jane Knight
Children's Buyer
Bear Pond Books, Montpelier VT

What a Beautiful Day!

Our first day of school in October was wonderful. We came in to school, checked out new jobs, had Daily Five, and got our October calendar set up. We made situpons and headed to Hubbard Park.

Once in the park, we enjoyed our lunch, played group games and then found our "sit spots" in the forest.

Many thanks to all who helped  make the day so successful!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

NAP Tomorrow

We will be heading to Hubbard park at 11:30 tomorrow.  We will eat lunch then have our NAP lesson. We will be making situpons in the morning to allow us to sit on the damp ground! Please help your child select weather appropriate clothing, and to dress in layers. Boots, hikers or sneakers would be best! Please feel free to join us on this adventure. I am expecting, JJ, Jen M, and Berenice, and would welcome anyone who can make it!!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

September Birthday Breakfast

We celebrated our September birthdays on Friday!

We also took some time to reflect on all of the happenings in September. We had a busy, productive first month of first grade. Thanks to all  the volunteers who have helped with NAP, Bug Fest, Four Winds, September Birthday breakfast, and the many other activities here at school.

I will be sending a volunteer sign up sheet home soon, so more folks can become involved in our community of learners.