The students in my first grade class are interested in sharks, puzzles, making friends, STEAM, and superheroes. They want to succeed even though there are many forces in this country which fight against their efforts. They speak Spanish, Tigrinya, Somali, Khmer, Cambodian, Mandarin, Tagalog, and English. My students are inquisitive, hilarious, honest, and ambitious people. Two out of three are living in poverty and every single student has so much drive to learn. With a wonderful diversity of interests and challenges, we work hard to know each student's name and need.
My students are slowly settling into the new reality of quarantine life.
Per the district's recommendations, we have two 30-minute lessons every week in addition to two hours of "office hours" where I can answer questions or give suggestions to families. My favorite time of the week is when we have our class meeting. We greet each other and share our news, which typically has something to do with a sibling or a pet, and then answer a silly question or a "would you rather" question.
These kids are resilient and so are their families.
At our school, we try every day to be PUMAS: Positive, United, Mindful, Academic, and Safe. In order to be PUMAS, many of my students rely on the support of the community for basic necessities.
Now that we are distance-learning, we rely on this community for basic learning supplies as well.
To determine how students are progressing in their reading skills, we administer Fountas and Pinnell assessments several times throughout the year. Those results tell us where, on a range of A-Z, students' reading fluency and comprehension lie. Our ultimate goal is for each first grader to be able to read and comprehend level I books.
These book sets will provide support and challenge for students who are building their reading skills.
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