August 29, 2014

Yay for first grade!!!  Our first week together was amazing and I cannot wait to see how much we get done during our second week.

The kiddos absolutely rocked literacy stations.  Can you believe they met the 40 minutes of independent practice goal in only 4 days?!  We made a big deal of that!!  Our first lunch buddy experience will happen tomorrow.  Green Table is excited.  Its going to be fun!!

So... for week 2, I'm going to send the homework through an email in Skyward.  If you don't have an email account set up through school, do so!  You'll get emails from me and from school that will help keep you informed.  Don't worry, you'll also get a paper copy.

The homework works like a menu.  There are appetizers, entrees, and desserts.  Choose 2 appetizers, do all 3 entrees, and choose at least 1 dessert.  You can do as many as you want, of course but that's all that's required.  Each week will list spelling words, HFW (high frequency words/sight words), sentences to practice writing (there will likely be a test on Fridays), and phrases that are excellent practice for fluent reading.

On Friday, sign the homework in the top right corner and send it to school.  If they complete their homework and it is signed by YOU, they will get a special reward ticket.  Please don't spend more than 10-15 minutes on homework each evening.  If you choose to get it all done on Wednesday night, that's totally fine, but encourage the kiddos to make responsible choices and be sure they get their work done.  Keep in mind, that 10-15 minutes is a long time to focus your attention on homework after a long day of first grade.

Spelling Word practice can be found at Spelling City: 

Thanks for making our first week an amazing one!  Enjoy the day off and we will see you bright and early Tuesday morning!

With happiness,
Jen ♥

March 31, 2014

DINOSAURS!!! Need I say any more?  We will be digging deep into dinosaurs to help us learn how to gather information from a variety of sources and compile it into a meaningful research project.  It is going to be epic!! :)

Click below to visit the flyer and find the link to the Munchkin Menu. 

March 24, 2014

Hello, friends! Click the pic to go to our digi-version of the Munchkin Mail where you'll find links to great academic games, the weekly Homework Menu, and spelling lists.  Don't forget that Friday, March 28th is a student holiday!

Thanks so much!  Have a great week. :)

March 3, 2014

Happy ice day!  I have to tell you that I am super thankful for the day at home to rest.  I hope you enjoyed it, too.  Can you believe that next week is Spring Break?  It seems unreal!  I'm ready to see some spring weather and get some sunshine on my cheeks.

If you haven't checked out our Donors Choose Project, please do.  We are looking to get funding for an iPad and a set of headphones to use in the classroom.  We are almost there but need more funding.  It is set to expire in 31 days and then we'll have to start all over.  Please share this link and the information with your family and friends.  This technology would directly impact classroom instruction and would give the munchkins hands-on experience with some digital publishing tools.  Here's the link:

Here's this installment of our new digital Munchkin Mail.  Just click the picture to be directed to the website.  Have a great week and an even Spring Break!! :)

February 24, 2014

Munchkin Mail :)  Click the pic below to find a digital version of our Munchkin Mail this week.

October 21, 2013

Hello Families!  We are looking forward to our study of BATS and addition facts this week. 
Check out the tabs at the top of this website each week for new interactive games and activities that directly relate to things we do in the classroom.
We are also gearing up for our field trip to Mainstay Farm on the 31st. 

If you haven't tried Spelling City yet, I encourage you to give it a go!  It is really great practice for the kiddos who are struggling with our spelling words.  Spelling words each week are based on spelling patterns that we've been learning during class.  The more practice they get with those words, the better they will get at reading and spelling!
Have a great week!  :)

September 30, 2013

Welcome to Week 6! 
Check your Gator News for some important information about our upcoming field trip and a photo release for the yearbook.
Also check out the tabs on our webpage for fun games related to our academic standards for this week. 
Have fun!


September 23, 2013

Hello, Munchkin Families! 
We are in the 5th week of First Grade!  It is so hard to believe we've been at it that long.  We are really getting in a good groove and learning so much together.  I'm really excited to see how far we are going to go this year.
On Tuesday a note will come home about our upcoming field trip to Mainstay Farm.  This is an amazing field trip and they kiddos will have a wonderful time.  Guaranteed!  Please visit the website below to find out more.  Our trip will be on October 31st.  This is NOT a Halloween adventure and there will be no dressing up but we will have an amazing time.

Check out your spelling words at Spelling City

August 24, 2013

It's almost time to go back to school!!  I was very pleased to many new students at Meet the Teacher night on Thursday. I always have the most beautiful students!  I can't wait to meet the remaining kiddos on the first day of school.
A few things to note for the first week: 
  1. Drop the kiddos off in the cafĂ© by 7:30 am.  I'll pick them up there.
  2. If they way they get home changes at any time, notify me or the office immediately.
  3. Feel free to send a water bottle each day.  Just make sure that your child's name is secured on the bottle.
  4. Consider sending a change of clothes in your child's backpack for the first week.  It's hard to get our bodies back on a school schedule!
  5. Your child will get a "take home folder" this first week.  It may or may not come home on the first day of school.  When you DO receive this folder, please make sure to check it each evening & return it each morning.  Students will keep these folders in their classroom mailboxes & will carry important notes home in these folders.
  6. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to let me know!  Please understand that I won't be ready to discuss academic goals for a few weeks.  We need to spend some time together and get some assessments out of the way before I can discuss academic goals accurately.
  7. If you tell me something you want me to remember, send me a follow up email or a note in your child's backpack or folder.  I may not remember if I can't stick a note to my planner!
Welcome back to school!  I am so glad you're here!  :)

 April 8, 2013

My, it has been awhile since I've updated this page!  For the next 2 weeks, we will be talking about dinosaurs, the continents, and getting ready for our upcoming field trip.
If you check out the Munchkins Tab, you'll see a lot of new games that the kiddos will have fun working with.  Some of them are really challenging and will get their brains thinking outside the box about how to solve problems in new and interesting ways.  These types of games and activities are very important for stimulating the thought process.  While some may seem like simple fun & games, they are really learning a great deal.  Encourage them to try new ways of doing things!  Trial & error is often the best way to learn new skills.
Check out Spelling City for the weekly spelling games using these words: 
find, saw, starvation, now, taking, shouted, old, joining, fault, plastic, *four, *word, and our new high frequency words:  father & through
These words may seem difficult for first graders but they go along with our Saxon Phonics activities from weeks past and the students should be very familiar with sound spelling patterns.
I found a great Saxon Phonics "Survival Guide" here from Sharon Elementary in Suwanee, Georgia.  It has great information for first grade students and parents about the rules of coding words.  It's so difficult to remember everything and it is very new to me!  The Munchkins and I are learning together.
Our field trip to Mainstay Farm is coming up soon!  Check out their website here so you see all the fun things we will experience on our trip. 
With happiness,
Jen :)

  March 18, 2013

Welcome back to the real world after Spring Break!  The weather was perfection & I finished 2 books I'd been wanting to read.  We're in the home stretch now!  

This week we will be learning about fractions. We'll talk about half, whole, part, sections, numerator, denominator, 1/2, 1/3, 1/4... and we'll see how far we can get!  I've loaded a lot of links to fun fraction games on the Munchkins Tab.  Let them have a whirl at any of them and see how they do.  Some games are more challenging than others, but all are fun. 

We will continue working on our independent reading fluency.  The kiddos are doing a great job.  Our sight words for this week are:  change, danger, strange, stranger, America, and animal.

Our spelling words for this week are:  Friday, disturb, hiding hurt, elbow, off, survive, acorn, boy, turtle, *any, *many.

The sentences that the students will be required to write independently on Friday are:  Curt burned his hand on the hot car.  The burn hurt and felt like fire.   My cat had five kittens on my birthday.  The first ones were girls and the rest boys.  
These sentences may sound a bit random, but they are comprised of words that the students can sound out based on what we've learned in Saxon Phonics all week, and the weeks prior.  

You'll  notice the back of the Munchkin Mail is a bit different this week.  Building vocabulary is essential to reading success!  In an effort to encourage the kiddos to use their words well, try your hand at the "Word Map."  There is a space for students to write a word of their choosing (from sight words this week, our spelling words this week, or they are free to choose another word if they wish), illustrate that word, write a sentence with their chosen word, and more!  They will receive an extra prize for the week if this is completed by Friday.

I hope you had a restful week and are ready to get back in the swing of First Grade!

Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring!  :)

With happiness, 
Jen :)

February 3, 2012 (oops...2013) :)

Well, hello February!  I love you & all your pink-ness!  This will be an exciting week for us.  On Thursday, we will celebrate 100 days of First Grade!  Only about 87 days left & we will be moving on along as 2nd graders.  They are almost ready, too.  :)

For Thursday, make sure to send the munchkins in a special 100 Day shirt along with their collection of 100 things in a jar or baggie.  I've been scouring Pinterest for ideas & haven't decided what to do yet.  The kids have some great ideas, though.

Our spelling words for his week are:  fly, problem, trusted, blooming, myself, inside, day, campfire, under, weekly, *where, and *thought.  These words come straight out of our Saxon Phonics lessons so they are all (*with 2 exceptions) words that they can sound out using what we've learned in Phonics.  Remember to give them a go over at Spelling City

We will be learning about the sky, the moon, the stars, and constellations.  Learning about our solar system and the wondrous things in the big ol' sky is always so much fun.  It's amazing to realize just how tiny we are in this incredible universe. 

For math, we are working on numbers 80-99.  Kiddos should have a good grasp on this already but continue practicing putting large numbers together and taking them apart again.  Focus on using base 10 to create large numbers.  For example:   how many tens are in 99?  How many ones?  Can you show me that number using a picture?  

Try this website for further practice.  The munchkins have used it before and love the challenge of building models to show numbers in the hundreds!

Thank you for keeping up with what's going on in first grade!  We are having fun and working so very hard.

Have a great week!  ♥


January 27, 2013

Welcome to the 4th week of the 4th six weeks!  Can you believe it?  I'm so proud of the kids.  They are doing an amazing job and I so enjoy sitting back and watching them learn independently.  We are in a great swing right now and we are working hard to get ready for second grade.

This week we will continue our practice with sums & minuends to 18 (subtraction) and we will take some time to learn about the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.  I'm excited about this one because it's a new unit for me!  We will focus on animals of these hemispheres and learn about the continents on our great planet.  I hope I can keep up with all the Munchkins have to teach me on this subject.

Literacy this week will focus on alphabetizing words and finding them in the dictionary.  We will also practice using some online resources to help us learn new words.  Have you ever tried   It's a wonderful resource and yes, there is even an iPhone & iPad app.  There's also one for Android!  :)

 Our spelling words for this week are:  my, tell, her, soon, shall, stringy, made, feelings, packed, number, *want, *don't.  Check them out here at Spelling City! Did you know there was a Spelling City app?  Oh yes, there is!!  Check it out here!!  :)

And this week, I want to show you an app!  I know that several munchkins (and parents) are using iPads and iPhones to enhance learning.  Last night I spend a good 2 hours browsing the App Store to find new and exciting learning games for the kiddos.  They LOVE the "iPad of Happiness" station and have so much fun learning with each other.  I wish I had of iPads for the classroom!  However, I feel very fortunate to have my own that we can use. 

This week on iTunes, one of the "New and Noteworthy" apps is called "Endless Alphabet."  It's extremely visually pleasing to both adults and kids, but it's so much more than that.  It's an amazing tool for letter recognition, phonics, spelling, and vocabulary!  Best of all, it's FREE right now!  I can't wait to show it to the munchkins.

Check it out here!

Have a great week!  ♥

January 21, 2013

This week we are celebrating an incredible leader in our American History.  Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. did so much in the name of equality and freedom. We will listen to his "I Have a Dream" speech and we will discuss just what it means to treat each other with kindness, respect, and decency no matter our outer appearances because are all the same on the inside.  

Check out The King Center here.  It is an amazing resource! Look for the "Dreams" tab and add your own dream to the list.  Then take a little time to view the dreams of others.  Such a fantastic site & I can't wait to share it with the munchkins.

Every year I am impressed with the kids because they really understand what these concepts mean.  Their innocence, their natural inclination towards peace & love, and their sometimes brutal honesty are what keeps me teaching from year to year.  Kids just get it and I adore them for it!  I wish there was a way to bottle them up and keep their hearts at this age forever.  

This week's spelling words are:  me, run, thing, take, she's, looking, little, title, will, shell, *one, *two.  They are already on Spelling City.

Our Saxon Phonics main concepts for this week are:  combination ir, combination ur, the /s/ sound of Cc (cedilla), and digraph ow.

We have one sight word for this week:  once.

We will practice putting these words in alphabetical order:  fur, burn, nurse, gurgle, curb, jury, hurdle.

We will focus on Social Studies this week with our discussions about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  

Check out this wonderful kid-friendly video on Brain Pop, Jr.  They feature a free educational  movie each week!

For math, we will continually review time and begin a deeper study on sums & minuends to 20.  Practice subtraction and telling time at home with the kiddos.  Ask questions like, "If it's 10:30 right now, what time will it be in a half hour?   In an hour?"  "What is one hour later than 2:00?"  These questions will challenge their thinking and help them practice the skills we have been learning at school.  

Visit some of the websites below and have fun learning.  Our concepts are getting more difficult so you may notice a change in the grades your child is receiving.  Don't be alarmed!  Know that the skills are getting much more difficult & the more you challenge them at home with real world applications to our school concepts, the more they will connect their learning and help it to sink in.   

Munchkin Mail :)



January 14, 2013

Wow! Where did 2012 go?  I cannot believe that we are in 2013.  I am still having a hard time getting used to that number.  When I was a kid, it seemed impossible for that date to be real.  

This is where I spent my Christmas vacation.  :)
I apologize for not having updated the blogger for a little while.  I have been overwhelmed with the holidays and figuring out the second semester of first grade.  I am so excited to be where I am right now!  The munchkins are pure joy & I am looking forward to seeing where this second semester takes us.  

For our Spelling Words this week, we have words that kiddos will be able to sound out without any trouble.  We have been studying our Saxon Phonics and practicing as much as possible in the classroom.  Please remember to visit Spelling City (or download the app from iTunes) and look for my homepage under my name Jennifer MacMurray.  Word lists are organized there by date of instruction so practice as many lists as you like.  The games are really fun and will increase their fluency while making reading much more fun.  

Spelling words this week are:  drink, stacked, five, good, name, six, napkin, us, jump, yes, *some, *was.

Remember, the words with the * are sight words that should be memorized.  They do not follow typical sound/spelling patterns so sounding them out will not provide the correct spelling.  

Our sight words/high frequency words for this week are:  word, work, world.  Students should touch and say these words until they are committed to memory.

Mathtime to the hour, 1/2 hour (half-past), and on the 5's.  The munchkins have been very successful with telling time so far!  I know they will do a spectacular job this week.  Practice by looking at analog AND digital clocks at home. What time is bedtime?  When is dinner?  Real world connections will make learning sink in so much better!

Science:  Weather patterns & a science fair project!  We are going to try our hands are making crayon rocks. Happy thoughts will be appreciated.  :)

Don't forget that next Monday, January 21, 2013 is a holiday in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr.  

In the meantime, check out the following websites to practice school topics at home.  You'll enjoy seeing your munchkins manipulate the sites with ease. They are so good at technology!

Compare numbers (greater than/less than) at Crickweb!
Time Game... can be tricky, but give "Telling the Time" a shot!

Thank you for visiting!  See you soon. :)


December 10, 2012

Cold Front!  Woohooo... it's beginning to actually feel like December!  This week I am really looking forward to getting deeper into the writing process with the kiddos.  We did a small little blip about the beginning, middle, and end of stories last week but it just wasn't enough.  This week, there will be more!  I'm excited.  We also enjoyed the Gingerbread man theme so much, we will do more with it.  Watch for character maps, glyphs, and fun gingerbread stuff intermingling with our science, math, and social studies units for this six weeks.

Spelling words for this week are:  we, with, long, must, like, brisk, clock, sleep, sanding, and insect.  Remember, these are words that they can sound out because of the skills that we've learned so far this year.  Two tested sight words for this week are does & been.  These are words that won't sound right if we read them phonetically (by sounding them out). 

Check the back of your Munchkin Mail for some new ideas on how to practice spelling words & sight words.  There are some links there for fun websites including Tux Paint & Spelling City.  Take some time to check them out!!

Look at some of our wonderful snowmen creations & writing!  They are SO cute!! 


Website of the Week!


This is a wonderful game of place value where children are shown a set of rods & units, and must choose the correct numeral to show many.  I can't wait to show it to the munchkins.
There are more place value games here at Internet 4 Classrooms.

December 3, 2012

Hello, December and hello 82 degrees! What is up with this crazy heat wave?  Oh wait, we live in Texas.  What was I thinking?  

You may have noticed last week that the munchkins did not have any homework.  It was a "homework holiday" while we honed our skills in Saxon Phonics and got back on track with our schedules after the Thanksgiving break.  Now we only have a couple of weeks before our Christmas vacay & I am excited about the things we'll be learning!

This week we will focus on those phonics skills we were going to be doing last week.  That includes all those final, stable syllables.  It's a lot of hard work but I'm certain they will do a fantastic job!

We will also be learning about snow (in 82 degree weather) and all the land features associated with snow & ice.  I'm sure we'll discuss some of those wonderful cold weather animals as well.  For math, we will be working on numeration so keep practicing all those counting skills:  by 10's, 2's, 5's, 3's, and 25's!  Sounds hard but trust me, the munchkins can do it!

 Website of the Week!

There are a lot of fun games here at  Look around and you'll see some fun interactive winter themed activities for the munchkins.  :)


November 29, 2012

We've been learning about good nutrition this week and we found a great website that had us all rolling in laughter while learning!  Sheppard Software has an incredible site full of fun games that the kiddos had a ball with today.  Nearly everybody wanted me to write the address down so they could play on the site at home.  I love when they do that!  These are some serious techno-munchkins and I adore them!

Check out this site and play around with the kiddos.  You're sure to have a great time!


November 26, 2012

Welcome back from a wonderful week off !  I hope everyone had a relaxing break.  I was very thankful to spend some time painting, resting, reading, catching up on my DVR, and sleeping late!  I'm ready to get back in the swing of things, though.  We are in the home stretch of 2012 & I can see the light at the end of the tunnel that leads to a brand new year of exciting adventures.

This week we will be working on final, stable syllables in phonics.  These are syllables at the ends of words that make the same sound.  We will learn about -ble, -fle, -ple,-dle, -cle, -zle, -sle, and -kle.  That is a lot of final, stable syllable action!  I think they'll get the hang of it pretty quickly, though.  The munchkins are brilliant!

In math we'll be continuing our work with coins and we will work on a mini-unit about nutrition.  

Watch your Munchkin Mail for a list of our sight words and spelling words to practice.  I cannot stress enough the importance of practicing sight words (touch & say... don't sound out) each week.  The ability to recognize and say these sight words & high frequency words quickly will make reading easier and allow for a deeper comprehension of material.  Practice, practice, practice!

Website of the Week!
For our week of nutrition we will spend some time wandering around the USDA's site Choose My Plate.  It has wonderful resources to help guide all of us to heather eating choices and there is an interactive game that the kiddos love every year.  Take some time to look around. 

 Have a great week!


November 5, 2012

Oh my!  Where has the time gone?  I feel like we are missing out on so many fun things we could be doing while time just whisks away from us. However, I am so impressed with how much the munchkins are learning.  They are doing an amazing job in first grade!  I am so proud of them.  :)

In an effort to communicate with my wonderful parents better, I'm starting a "Munchkin Mail" newsletter.  On the front it will give you all of our weekly expectations and a brief note about how we are doing.  On the back will be some ways that you can practice skills at home.  This first week will focus on ways to practice spelling & sight words.  I will try to copy it on a fun color each week so that you can find it easily in your child's take-home folders.

Remember, spelling words are words that the kiddos can sound out based on the skills that we've practiced in phonics lessons up to this point in the school year.  Sight words & high frequency words are usually words that do not follow typical spelling patters so when you sound them out, they don't sound right.  That's why these words are "look & say" words.   They should recognize them by sight.  The best way to practice these words is to use flash cards, build them with manipulatives, spell them, and find them in common places like billboards, newspapers, magazines, and cereal boxes.

Thank you so much for being involved & for working so hard to make home & school work together.  The difference you make in your child's education is tremendous!

♥ Jen :) 

Website of the Week!

 Explore information about Benjamin Franklin & learn things you never knew before.  Did you know he crossed the Atlantic Ocean 8 times?  You can even check out his instructions for making an "electrical kite" but don't try that at home, friends!  :)


October 21, 2012

Time is flying by!  I cannot believe that we are already nearing the end of October.  Where has the time gone?  This coming week we are working on fact families, soil (and pumpkins), the difference between wants and needs, and we will be really focusing on how to write a personal narrative.  Watch the Saxon homework for new learning about vowel patterns.  The munchkins & I will be learning together!  

If you have not yet sent materials for our Snow White & the 7 Dwarfs pumpkins for the pumpkin contest, please do so by Tuesday morning.  We will be decorating them for the pumpkin contest on Tuesday and Wednesday.  I can't wait to see how they turn out.

This week's high frequency words:  put, want, was, where.

This week's spelling words:  can, drop, snip, ants, ask, cat, flag, lost, stand, big, *of, *to  

*indicates high frequency words that do not follow typical spelling patterns 

Website of the Week!

Help your kiddos explore growing patterns at this fun site.  Ask them to describe how the pattern is growing and what would come next.  Betcha they can do them all!  :)

Thank you for being an amazing set of parents!

  ♥  Have a great week. ♥


 Week 6:  Hello Firsties! :)

We have been having amazing fun in first grade.  The munchkins are learning how to manage learning stations independently while working with me in small groups. Plus, I think we finally have our schedule figured out!  Things are going really smoothly.  

This week's key skills:
Spelling words:  a, an, at, tap, lot, nap, tan, zip, lap, pit
New Sight Words:  color & what
Math:  Skip counting, growing & shrinking patterns, repeating patterns
Science:  BATS! Force & motion
Social Studies:  historical figures & citizenship


Week 3:  Oh, what fun!

This week was such a joy.  I'm really proud of the kiddos and all that they have accomplished in a short period of time.  It is going to be so hard to leave them in June!  I am loving every minute.

This week's key skills:
Spelling words:  pin, win, hit, sit, miss, kiss, be, run
Review Sight Words:  it, over, too
New Sight Words:  be, ride, run, the
Math:  Graphing
Social Studies:  Constitution Day (September 17)
Science:  Texture, Size, & Mass

Constitution Day
Click here to visit

Website of the Week!

The munchkins love the 10 frame game at the Illuminations website.  It teaches them wonderful skills that help build mathematical fluency and increases their confidence because it guides them through if they have difficulty.  I love it on the SMARTboard, too! :)

Thanks bunches! 
Jen ♥

Week 2:  WOW! :)

The munchkins are absolutely rocking 1st Grade!  I am having so much learning how to do it all.  

Things to look forward to:
1.  Book baskets will start Week 3.  If your child has books at home that they want to bring to school for  the week, please feel free to send them.  These should be books that are on their "just right" level.  Nothing too hard, nothing to easy... something just right.  Make sure their names are on them & they will stay in their "Book Baskets" until they are ready to take them home.  These will be used during out "Daily 5" and our sustained reading portions of the day.  I promise the books will be safe.  :)

 2. Spelling tests are beginning this week!  We did a practice run last week and wow... they did great!  Watch for a list of words to come home on Monday or Tuesday to practice.  They are mostly word family words but will also have a few sight words.

3.  The kiddos are doing so well, I am going to discontinue the "How was my week?" page. If there is something we need to discuss, I'll make sure to call or send a note.  Reducing the paper we use & making everything more relevant is my goal.  

This week's key skills:

  • Write the alphabet in order.
  • Write & read consonant vowel consonant (cvc) words.  (like: hat, rat, mop, hit, bit...) 
  • Construct, read, and discuss graphs.
  • Classify objects by the properties of size, weight, and shape.
  • Create a pictorial timeline of the week's events.

Website of the Week!

 A wonderful free resource for interactive games that teach!  I will teach the munchkins how to use this at school as soon as we get our laptop repaired.  In the meantime, what are your favorite iPad apps for kids?  Share them with me & then your kiddos can teach the others how to make the most of them on my iPad of Happiness. 


Website of the Week!

The munchkins have had a wonderful time using this website during our center rotations (during literacy AND math).  It has all kinds of wonderful activities for a variety of learning levels.  Let them explore & play at home then they come teach us about their favorite parts at school!

♥ Jen

Week 1 ....SUCCESS! :)

This first week of school was amazing!  I had no idea what to expect the first day of school, but I knew I already loved the munchkins so I was excited.  Turns out, I love our new munchkins, too and we are going to have a spectacular year together!!

A few things to remember:
  1. Check the take-home-folder everyday.  The calendar is in there for you to use & so far, this kiddos have enjoyed having it to write their own notes in.  It will not be used to track behavior like last year, it is just for your reference.
  2. Watch for Saxon Phonics homework pages to come home just about everyday.  They shouldn't take long to complete, and the front side of the page is always done in class so they have had practice (unless they were absent).  It will not be checked for a grade, but will be considered "participation." Homework is just practice of what was completed during the school day.  Make it important to you & will be important to the kiddos, but don't stress over it... 10 minutes MAX! :)
  3. I am new to grades.  I am still learning about how to take/mark/score/input grades appropriately. If you have questions about anything, don't hesitate to ask!  Your questions may help to teach me a thing or two about taking and giving grades. Smiley faces in kindergarten were WAY easier than numerical grades in first grade.
  4. Read, read, read.... reading with your kiddos will make such a difference in their lives.  It gives them precious time with you, instills a love of reading, creates questions, generates answers, encourages curiosity, and develops an ever so incredible imagination!  Reading books together...sharing literature together.... will increase academic success in ALL areas:  reading, math, science, social studies, and relationships with others.  Take ten minutes a night and read a story with your munchkins.  The benefits are immeasurable!
Thank you for coming out to Meet the Teacher night.  Thank you for making sure your kiddos were prepared for the first week of school.  

But, most of all:  Thank you for bringing them back to me!  

This is going to be the best year of all time!! :)

♥ Jen

Welcome to a 21st Century Classroom (in the making)!

Hello, Parents,

Thank you for entrusting me with your precious Munchkins.  We will have a wonderful year together and I'm looking forward to getting started.

I have been teaching kindergarten for 12 years, and on this lucky 13th year, I get to loop up to first grade with an incredible group of kids.  I'm incredibly excited and looking forward to the challenge of learning a new grade level.  I have a specialization in early childhood education and have recently earned a master's degree in curriculum and instruction in reading and language arts.  Teaching literacy to little ones is my favorite thing to do!

In an effort to learn more, do more, and make better use of the technology resources available, I've set up this special place in my blog to communicate with parents.  On this page, you'll find all the information you need to get us through the year together.  I'll do my best to keep it updated so check back often and see what's new.

I will NOT post pictures of the children on this website or any other, so don't get your hopes up to see the kiddos gorgeous faces on the internet.  I won't do it. 

Save this page as a favorite & check back later to see what's going on.  As soon as the year gets started and all the little ducks are in a row, I'll post information like our daily schedule and resources that will help keep school and home connected in a meaningful way.

♥  Thanks for visiting! ♥

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