Name: Leslie  Ross-Hensley
Grade level/Subject:  1st
Conference Time:
9:45 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

"Children deserve a champion – an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection and insists that they become the best that they can possibly be."  Rita Pierson, Educator

Welcome to a wonderful first grade year.  I hope that you and your family had a safe, fun, and productive summer break, and you are now ready to embark on a new adventure.  First grade is a year of tremendous growth and progress.  Our children will grow by leaps and bounds, and it will be a joy to witness.  You are an integral part of your child's success, and I look forward to working with you this year to help our child succeed.


May 14, 2017
*** EOY Math Assessment is on May 23rd.

Readers are being currently assessed for EOY reading levels.  Please continue to make reading and discussion of text a priority in your home. You have been fantastic encouragers this year.

Readers and writers are working on their own research projects about animals. They are having so much fun learning about animals.  

Scientists are reviewing science skills from the whole school year. :)

Mathematicians will revisit addition and subtraction facts to twenty.  Students will spend lots of time solving story problems.  Encourage your child to write his or her own story problems and explain the thinking behind the math.  Calculation practice will be included in the story problems.

Thank you for continuing to make reading and writing a priority in your home.  Reading and retelling each day at home helps to strengthen this vital life skill of reading comprehension. Encourage your child to write about what he or she has read.  Thanks for all you do to set your child up for success.  You and your family are an integral part of your child's success.

Letter journals are due each Friday.  If your child forgets, we can always tape the old letter in the journal.

Important ideas or skills to revisit at home.

Please scroll down to bottom of page to view weekly homework and calendar dates.

**  Make the reading process encouraging and enjoyable at home.

**  Reading at home is the number one activity you can foster in order to build your child's fluency and comprehension.  Each child should be reading as long as possible.  We want to grow readers who love and appreciate great literature.

**  Interact with the text.  Allow your child to read, retell, and make connections to the text.  Ask questions that require your child to answer you with an explanation.  Try to steer clear of questions that can be answered with a yes or no.

** Ask your child about his or her day.  Start off having your child retell the morning or afternoon portion of the day.  Breaking the day into smaller chunks will be easier to organize and discuss.  We are here for seven hours a day, and our day is full of activities, interaction with peers, and learning.  :)

** Use out of school events like practices, music lessons, tutoring, and family events to act as retelling opportunities.  Include movies and your child's favorite tv show as part of the discussion topics.  Discuss the movies, games, and tv shows your children are watching.  Most of them follow a story line.  Details and connections may be found anywhere.  Learning is accomplished everywhere, not just during the school hours.

**  Relate everyday activities to learning.  Opportunities for math, problem solving, and critical thinking can be found at any store.  Identify numbers, count money, explain the process of paying money in exchange for a tangible object or service.

**  Write a journal entry each day in a spiral.  Students who make writing a part of their everyday routine improve their language foundation and thought process exponentially.

** Consider giving your child a library card. This is a key that will unlock pages and pages of experiences, new-found knowledge, and learning.  The benefits of a library card are phenomenal.  Think of the responsibility, academic achievement, and pride your child will demonstrate if he or she makes library visits a priority.  It's free and fun!

**  Start teaching your child to load his or her own backpack.  It may take more time in the evening, but you are modeling the behavior which you hope to see in the future.  Your child will never receive a negative consequence in my classroom if he or she forgets to bring the Friday homework.  Use our first grade year as the teaching year for responsibility at home. You will be happy to know you are facilitating the growth of an independent and responsible life-long learner.

** Capitalize on car time.  Use that time to converse about anything, play word and number games, and sing.

** Build examples of ways to show numbers.
Example:  Show ways to make 8
0 and 8         1 and 7          2 and 6                3 and 5                 4 and 4                 5 and 3         6 and 2         7 and 1         8 and 0 

. **  Write a journal entry each day in a spiral.  Students who make writing a part of their everyday routine improve their language foundation and thought process exponentially.  

******  Below are possible ways your child can practice his or her weekly words.  Word Study Tests will be administered every two weeks over the weekly words.  *******

Rainbow Write:  Students write consonants in any color.  Students write vowels in red.  Ex:  August

Shark Fins:  Students will write the word letter by letter on different lines:  Ex:  than

Tic Tac Toe:  Draw a tic tac toe board.  Student writes sight word and word family words on slips of paper.  One person will be x's and one person will be o's. Student A reads the card and asks Student B to spell the word out loud or to write it down.  If Student B spells the word correctly he/she may mark an x or an o on the tic tac toe board.  Play continues until player has three x's or o's vertically, horizontally, or diagonally.   

Memory:  Student writes each sight word and word family word on two different slips of paper.  Lay all slips of paper face down on a table.  Player A flips over two cards.   Player A reads both cards.  If both cards are the same, player A must generate a creative sentence out loud.  If the word is used correctly in the sentence, Player A keeps the cards.  If there is no match on the flipped cards, Player A turns cards over again.  Player B takes a turn and play continues as above.  The player with the most cards wins.

Snowman:  Student A draws a snowman.  Student A thinks of a word and writes lines for the word.  Example:   _____     ______    ______
Student B chooses a letter:  c.  C is not a letter in the word, so Student A erases part of the snowman.  Student B chooses another letter:  u.  U is a letter in the word, so Student A records a "u" in the blank.     ______  ___u___  ______.  Student B chooses another letter:  m.  M is not a letter in the word.  Student erases another part of the snowman. Student B chooses another letter.  If Student B calls out another letter that is part of the word, Student A writes it down on the appropriate blank.  If Student B chooses a letter that is not part of the word, Student A erases another part of the snowman.   Play continues until Student A guesses the word correctly or the snowman disappears or melts away.  An alternative way to play this game is to follow the rules on traditional Hangman.  We will model this game in class.  

Sentences:  Using sight word and word work words, students use one word in each sentence.

Playdough:  Students may manipulate playdough into letters and spell the week's words.

Shaving Cream:  Spray shaving cream in a clean cookie sheet.  Students use their fingers to spell various words.

**  Greater is Great Game:  Take a manila sheet of paper and fold into 16 sections.  Students will make a 4 by 4 array.  Encourage your child to write down any two digit or three digit numbers up to 120.  (To make this game higher leveled and more challenging, use numbers to 900.)  Your child will now cut out all sixteen number cards.  Sort the numbers into an even or odd pile and ask your child to defend how and why they sorted the numbers in that manner.  Students will lay the cards out greatest to least and then least to greatest.  Check your child's work.

Greater is Great:  Divide deck of digit cards in two piles.  Two players flip their card over and player with largest card says a math sentence.  For example:  345 is greater than 88.  Play continues until cards are all turned over.  Player with the most cards wins.  To create more opportunities to practice, make two sets of cards.

Least is Lucky:  Play game as above, but this time the smaller number wins the round.

** Practice finding numbered pages in a book.  Race against each other to gain speed.  

** Practice tying shoes at home.  This is a difficult skill to master and practice makes permanent.  

** Read nursery rhymes to gain speed and fluency.

** Practice addition and subtraction math facts in the car with automaticity.  

**  Create clues to help define words for the week.

** Practice identifying left and right.

**  Determine ways to show a number.
Example:  Ways to make 5:  five, 2+3 = 5, tally marks, value of a nickel, picture of five objects, etc...
**  Discuss how heating and cooling changes matter.

**  Identify the tens and ones in numbers written.

**  Call out examples of nouns.  Be sure to differentiate between common nouns and proper nouns.

** Look for examples of three dimensional space figures around the home.

** Practice correct pencil grip and letter formation.

** Discuss characteristics of geometric figures at home.  Students should be able to name characteristics of two dimensional plane figures and three dimensional space figures with ease.  Find real life examples at home.

** Choose non-fiction books to read and look for non-fiction text features.

** Encourage your child to make grocery lists.

** Create story addition and subtraction story problems out loud for your child to solve.

** Write and send a letter to a family member.

** Read labels at the grocery store.

**  Compare prices of food items at the grocery store.

** Encourage your children to wear an analog watch to learn to tell time.  

**Students are working with numbers and finding various ways to build a number during our math sessions. Example:  23 = 2 tens and 3 ones or 23 ones.

**Practice skip counting by fives and tens forward and backward.

** Use an analog clock to practice telling time to the hour and half-hour.

**  Encourage your child to read the how-to directions on the back of food items.

** practice counting coins using pennies, nickels, and dimes

**  write about your day in a journal entry

** generate different sentences using exclamation points and question marks

** Sort and count collections of money.  We have learned about the penny, nickel and dime so far.  Quarters will be taught soon.  

** Set timer for one minute to practice timed readings.

** Write poetry ideas in the IDEA BOOK. Students may take booklet home, but it needs to be returned each day. Thank you.

** Practice creating story problems in the car.

** Each hair written on top of the coin represents five cents. One dot written on top of the coin signifies one cent. Example:  Draw 22 cents using nickels and pennies.  
Four nickels would have one hair drawn on top of each coin.  Students would count by fives to reach twenty cents. Students would draw one dot on top of each penny and count on... 21 cents, 22 cents
one nickel - one hair
one dime - two hairs
one quarter - five hairs
one penny - one dot

** Count and group objects in tens and ones.  Practice counting these objects.

** Construct plane shapes using manipulatives.

** Identify three dimensional shapes in the pantry of the kitchen. Allow opportunities for your child to build two dimensional plane shapes and three dimensional shapes with playdough, pipe cleaners, toothpicks, and pretzels.  Discuss and explain vertices, edges, and faces.

** Manipulate hands on an analog clock to practice telling time in a story problem format.

** Ready, Set, Go!
Use both hands and extend the digits 0 - 10.  Your partner shows his/her digits.  The first one to find the sum earns one point.  Game can be played with subtraction as well.

** Log on to for fun, active, kinesthetic brain breaks for the children.

** Encourage your child to write original poems.

** Generate a list of questions about a topic of interest and encourage your reader to locate the answers in a book or online.

Upcoming Events/ News

Early May - EOY reading assessments- DRA Testing

May 23 -Last District Math Checkpoint

May 25 - Field Day

June 1 - Last Day of School - Clap out - 10:45 a.m.

Monday-  Read great books.
Tuesday-  Read great books.
Wednesday- Read great books. Complete a word choice activity from the chart if you wish.

Thursday- Read. Complete math page. See math homework schedule passed out on Information Night.
Friday-  Read great books.
     Friday:  Genius Hour 7:45 - 9:00

7:45 - 8:05 - Warm-Up/Announcements

8:05 - 9:40 - Language Arts

9:40 - 10:30 - Fine Arts/ P.E.

10:30 - 11:00 - Language Arts

11:00 - 11:15 - Math  

11:15 - 11:45 - Lunch

11:45 - 12:15 - Recess/ DEAR

12:15 - 1:35 - Math  

1:35 - 1:55 - Social Studies

1:55 - 2:20 - Science

2:20 - 3:05 - Dragons Digging Deeper

3:05 - Stack and Pack/Dismissal

Units of Study for the Week:

Please have your child read for thirty minutes each night.
May 14, 2017

Word Family Words:  Words Their Way word sorts - individualized spelling program

High Frequency Words:  
Be sure to review all previously listed high frequency words.  Students are expected to spell these words correctly in their daily work.

Reading:   Research

Writing:      Research

Science:  Review

Social Studies: Goods and Services/Needs and Wants

Math:  addition and subtraction to 20 - calculation problems and story problems

Volunteering at Deretchin
The Conroe Independent School District values the contributions made by its many volunteers who diligently work to support our outstanding students, teachers, and programs.  It is our goal to provide a safe environment for our students and visitors, therefore each person MUST apply to have a criminal history check at the website below.  Once you are approved, then you will be put on the CISD's volunteer list of approved individuals who can enter the building.  Deretchin receives a list of approved volunteers which is kept at the school’s front desk.  Please call the Deretchin Front Office at 832-592-8700 to check if your name on our list.  Only those on the list will be allowed to continue to work with our students.  Thanks for helping keep our students safe and complying with this CISD policy.




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Conroe, Texas 77304
(936) 709-7752

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