Welcome to 1st Grade
My name is Mrs. Pieper and I have been teaching first grade here at St.Peter’s for many, many years. So you can see that I have a great fondness for our school. I have three children who all attended St.Peter’s and have many happy memories of their years here. I have six grand children, who I enjoy very much.
Mrs. Richards is helping us for the second year as our first grade aid. She also has two children who attended our school. Mrs. Richards has many years of experience as an aid for our fourth and fifth grade students and as a Title I tutor for Charles County.
December in first grade seemed to go by very quickly! We practiced and performed very well in our school Christmas program. We started and ended the adventures of Gingerbread Fred and Ginger Gingerbread. The children each had a chance to take one of the felt gingerbread dolls home and write about their time with Fred or Ginger. The characters went out to dinner, dance class, Karate class, played video games, did homework and even went to church. We are now making a book for each of the children and they have made their own felt gingerbread people to put on the cover of their book. The children really enjoyed this activity.
December also meant lots of Christmas preparations and crafts. Each day during Advent we filled our large wooden manger with slips of paper stating a special promise for the Baby Jesus. We made decorations for our tree and gifts for our parents. And managed to do our classwork at the same time!
We are very proud of the first grade as they have all earned Math Medals and our dog tag count is going up each week. We have students who have read and passed tests on as many as 38 books. This is quite an achievement and they should be very proud of themselves.
January means that we are back to work. We are starting a new unit in our Superkids program and we are beginning a new library of objectives in Accelerated Math. The children look forward to mastering their objectives in order to win their math medals.
Mr. Brett worked with the children on a unit about wind energy. We ended the unit by making wind mills out of juice cartons and popsicle sticks. He then turned on a big floor fan and we watched to see which windmills would spin and figure out why some of them would not spin. The new unit he is working on with the STEM program is about oil spills and how they can affect the environment.
We are looking forward to the fun activities during Catholic Schools Week. About 16 of the children are busy practicing their songs and presentations for the talent show. Taylor Swift songs seem to be the favorite choice. It will be fun!
Our Luna Moth is still in its cocoon. It is now 130 days. We are wondering if it will ever emerge!!
November is starting off with the excitement of the election. We learned all of the election words and about the actual voting process. We then had our own polling place with a voting booth where the children were able to vote for their candidate. They even got an “I Voted” sticker. This was part of an online nationwide voting for children. We do not know who won in our class, because it was a secret ballot. They enjoyed this activity and learned a lot about how we choose a president in our country.
We are looking forward to celebrating Veterans Day and then having a fun day with our grandparents before Thanksgiving. So many good days in first grade!!
October was another busy month for the first grade. We have been counting the days that our Luna Moth caterpillar has been in its cocoon. We are up to 58 days! The children are wondering if the moth will ever appear. This has been a real lesson in patience.
We began the month with the Race for Education. The children had a great time walking and running around the field. They then really enjoyed playing the out door games that were hosted by the eighth graders. A little rain moved our picnic lunch inside and we finished the day with a movie and popcorn.
We are now reading More Adventures of the Superkids. The program expands their phonics skills and then the children read stories that have the words that use these skills. The children are very excited to read each new story and use their new hardback reading books. We have learned idioms and we are now reading and using onomatopoeia words. They love saying onomatopoeia.
We have several children who are busy reading and have earned Accelerated Reader dog tags. Congratulations to them! More and more of the children are reading more books so we should have more dog tag winners very soon.
Hurricane Sandy intervened for two days, but we lucky to come back to school to celebrate Halloween. We had many Ninjas, butterflies, and bees. (Their teacher came as the Grinch Who Stole Christmas.) We were a part of the school Halloween parade and liked seeing all of the other classes’ costumes. We ended the day with a party and lots of candy.
The month was ended with our first report cards. I am very happy to say that all of the children are doing well and that I am very proud of them.
We are looking forward to working with a new class of children and their parents. To our new families at St.Peter’s, WELCOME, and we are excited for you to be with us.
Our first grade year has started out with a very exciting event. One of the students found a very large green caterpillar during our recess time. We found that it is a Luna Moth caterpillar and we put it in our butterfly net. Within two days, it had spun its cocoon and we are counting the days until the moth emerges. We have many guesses as to how many days until the great event. We’ll see!
We celebrated Citizenship Day ( sometimes called Constitution Day ) by making blue ribbons with many symbols of our country. The children enjoyed the story of the beginning of the USA, and felt very grown-up to find out that they were learning history.
Our next look into history will come on September 26th when we learn about the pioneers as we celebrate Johnny Appleseed’s birthday. Of course, there will be apples involved on that day.
The children have enjoyed renewing their friendship with the Superkids. We have almost completed the Welcome Back Superkids book. In this book, we have been reviewing short vowels and many sight words. The next part of the program introduces the children to More Adventures of the Superkids. Their use of phonics and many new language skills will be explored in this book. I am pleased with their language skills and know that we will be very successful as we meet each new skill.
We are also continuing with the Saxon Math Program. We are learning different shapes and angles, sorting rules, and graphing. All of this in our first few weeks of school!
Each year, the first grade class makes Friendship Promises. Each child signed a contract promising to be a good friend. With emphasis on kindness to each other, we will have a great year in first grade.