Tag Archives: 1st grade

1st Grade Community writing, reading, and iBooks …

Some amazing sharing of their writing.  You can absolutely hear the students’ voice in each piece of writing!

If you missed the previous post about the first grade community collaboration please be sure you don’t miss it (click here)


First Grade Inventors in the Riveter Lab!

Last week, the first grade girls came up to the Riveter Lab to IMG_9607learn with littleBits, kits consisting of electronic building blocks that snap together with magnets to create instant circuits. They started with the blue bits (power), a power supply (battery), and a simple LED light. After a little investigation, the girls were able to connect all of the pieces to light up the light. We then added a few more green bits (output) for the girls to explore. In no time, we saw LEDs, buzzers, and motors lighting up, making sounds, and moving at every table. Finally, we added the pink bits (input) to send messages to the green bits. By using the buttons and dimmers, the girls were able to control the intensity of the lights and volume of the buzzers.

IMG_9600More important than the creation of the circuits, the girls were implementing their design thinking skills. They examined the pieces, explored the different ways the pieces fit together, designed their circuits, tested their results, and then made modifications as needed. They worked together with their partners to troubleshoot and problem solve, building on their communication skills. We can’t wait to see what else the first graders create!IMG_9602

post written by C. Windell

NewsELA comes to Lower School …

Lower School Staff learn from NewsELA training team

Lower School Staff learn from NewsELA training team

On Monday I introduced the @Hamlin Lower School staff to NewsELA.  I did so with the help of NewsELA’s trainer Nicole Boyle.  Truth be told, the staff was introduced to the tool by Nicole who led a quick and informative webinar that walked the entire staff through the system.  What is NewsELA you ask?  Well according to Sofia in first grade:

“Its like a newspaper but its written just for kids.”

Truth from the mouths of babes.  In fact NewsELA is a site that reworks non-fiction text and publishes it at a variety of Lexile levels.  This enables teachers to assign articles that share current content to students at a variety of reading level; thus ensuring that students have an equal opportunity to read the information with understanding.  Or from their site:

Newsela is an innovative way to build reading comprehension with nonfiction that’s always relevant: daily news. It’s easy and amazing.

I loved being invited in to Ms. Burstein’s first grade classroom this morning and hearing the students read about a baby Rhino sanctuary in African.

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