Welcome to First Grade!
Parent Information

Mrs. Chavira's Email: heatherc@wateroflifecs.org

Mrs. Chavira's Wiki: chavira.wolcs.wateroflifecs.org

Class Philosophy:
It is my goal to develop a classroom learning environment based on the fruits of the spirit (Galatians 5:2) where students grow spiritually, academically, and sociably. In my class students will learn how to become effective communicators and thinkers (problem solve). With your help, I believe we can work together in developing and fostering strong Christian leaders in our country. And yes, all this starts in first grade!

Our first grade curriculum is designed to academically challenge and foster your child’s development in the following core subjects; reading, writing, math, science, social studies and Bible. Here is a brief overview of the learning objectives for each;

Reading-comprehension, phonics, fluency, AR reading
Math-addition/subtraction (single/double), place value, geometry, data/graphing, measurement, word problems, fact families, capacity
Science-states of matter, weather, habitats, plants, animals
Social Studies- our community, the land around us, making a difference, the marketplace, different cultures
Bible-Bible characters, scripture verses, fostering Christ-like characteristics, student salvation
Additional academic curriculum/enrichment- art, writing, physical education, music, Spanish

Homework will be assigned everyday (with the exception of weekends, holidays, and vacations) based on concepts and subjects taught in class. Parents must initial the homework cover sheet daily. This shows me that you have assisted, overlooked, and have checked for understanding during homework with your child. On the homework cover sheet will also be listed weekly spelling words, memory verses, and your child’s behavior for the day (rubric is provided on the homework cover). These packets will be given every Monday and need to be completed and turned in on a daily basis. Homework will then be collected, corrected, and returned daily with my initials. Students will be given points daily for completion, effort, and parent initials. If a homework assignment is incomplete or not turned in the day it was assigned, points will be given based on what was completed-no extensions will be given (only if absence is excused by school).

Homework Tips:
  • Encourage, praise, assist, and expect your child’s best work!
  • Have your child create and write their own sentences. They will not grow and learn if you do it for them. If needed, model on another sheet of paper or assist them with the decoding or spelling of words
  • Always use a pencil for writing, unless other directions have been given
  • Check over each night’s assignments by considering the following…
-Did your child use a capital letter at the beginning of a sentence and appropriate punctuation at the end?
-Did your child write neatly?
-Did your child complete all tasks given?

Reading Log:
Students will be expected to read to an adult daily for 20 minutes and complete in their reading log the book title, pages read, and obtain a parent initial. By reading with your child daily will enable your child to increase in fluency, accuracy, and comprehension J

Grading Policy:
Students will be graded in all core subjects based on the given rubric:
Tests= 40%
Quizzes= 30%
Classwork/projects= 20%
Homework/welcome work= 10%

Classroom Behavior Chart:
My philosophy is to instill the basic skills needed to foster and create a safe learning environment while encouraging responsibility. I will also hold students accountable for maintaining appropriate behaviors and following class rules. Each day all students start on green and move up or down on the scale throughout the day. “Second chances” are always encouraged when change and actions are displayed (Christ-like). Students have an opportunity not only to demonstrate great actions and work, but can also strive to be outstanding!

The system goes as follows;

Outstanding (purple): your child has done an exceptional job of following all class rules and procedures

Great Job (blue): Student has followed all class rules and procedures

Ready to Learn (green): All students start at this color/level each morning

Ms. Chavira’s Choice (yellow): student was unable to redirect behavior and teacher will select consequence

Parent Contact (orange): Student has repeated same offense after consequence was given, parent notification/meeting

Think About It (red): student is given a verbal warning based on negative behaviors or choices made

Behavior Notification sheet:
If a student has received a yellow or below by the end of the day, a behavior notification sheet will be sent home. Students are responsible for completing the sheet, sharing the sheet with parents (parent signature), and returning it the following day. This sheet serves as a way to communicate about your child’s day while holding them accountable and responsible for their actions.

Mrs. Chavira’s Problem Solving Skills/Steps:
In order to better foster independence and problem-solving skills through peer interaction, I have developed the following 3 steps students are required to use inside and outside of class during any conflict;

  1. 1. Tell the person to stop and how you feel
  2. 2. If the person continues to bother, move away from them
  3. 3. If the person continues to bother again, tell an adult

However, if a student does one or more of the following go tell an adult immediately!
-kick -hit
-spit -pinch
-trip -bite
-push -shove

Uh-Oh Slips:
Uh-Oh slips are given to students for various reasons (example: talking, needed additional time) and is indicated on the slip which is attached to the incomplete assignment. In order to receive full credit, the assignment must be completed and returned the following day. Points will be deducted each day it is late.

I understand that circumstances may occur periodically. However, I encourage you to do your best at bringing your child to school on time and daily. Each morning when students come into class will be given Welcome Work. Welcome work is 15 minutes long and cannot be made up. If you know your child is going to be absent in advance, please let me know so I can gather work ahead of time. Also, please notify the school office of any absences. All make-up work is due one week from the day student was absent. Points will be deducted each day it is turned in late.

Birthday Celebrations:
Each month there will be several birthdays! To be a good steward of time and learning, we will celebrate all birthdays in each month on the last Friday of that month from 2:30-3:00 (days/times are tentative based on vacations, events, holidays). I strongly encourage parents to bring in already prepared treats or bags for students. Please email me 2 weeks prior if you would like to participate so I can plan according and make sure there are no snack or treat repeats for each celebration.

Parent Volunteers:
I would really appreciate parent volunteers for our 3 field trips this year. If you’re interested in volunteering for a field trip, depending on the need for volunteers will be based on a “first-come-first-serve” basis from when the email was first sent out. However, if a parent has already attended a field trip, I will give other parents who have not had the opportunity to attend so that way everyone has a chance to join in on the fun! Please make sure your email address is current on RenWeb so you won’t miss out!

Recess Snacks:
Since our 1st graders are transitioning to a full day of school with a later lunch time, your child may bring in a snack to eat during their recess. This is not mandatory, but recommended. Please take in mind that recess is 20 minutes long and students play and also use the restroom during this time. So please pack a “light” snack (fruit snacks, sliced apples, Granola bar) and make sure your child is aware of which snacks to eat apart from their lunch.

Cupcake Vowel Words:
Students will be given 10 lists consisting of long and short vowel sight words. All students will begin at the same place but eventually will master each list at their own pace. Every Friday, I will “quiz” each student on their list while checking for fluency and accuracy. If the student has mastered their list, then they will be able to move on and receive a “sprinkle” on their cupcake. However, if students have not yet mastered a list by Friday, they will continue reviewing in class until they do so. For those students who have mastered all 10 lists and have received 10 sprinkles on their cupcake will be invited to a class cupcake party!

Blends Sight Words:
Students will be given 10 lists consisting of commonly used sight words that begin with blends. All students will begin at the same place but eventually will master each list at their own pace. Every Friday, I will “quiz” each student on their list while checking for fluency and accuracy. If the student has mastered their list, then they will be able to move on and receive a “fruit” on their blender. However, if students have not yet mastered a list by Friday, they will continue reviewing in class until they do so. For those students who have mastered all 10 lists and have received all 10 fruits on their blender will be invited to a class smoothie party!

Take Home Sight Words:
Students will be given a booklet with 11 sight word lists to take home. Since these lists will be kept at home until Friday, please make sure to practice and review lists with your child. If your child is ready to test each Friday, please initial the front cover of your child’s booklet under the correct number for each list under the letter “p” (P=parent initial, T=teacher initial). If your child receives my initial, this means they are ready to move on to the next list. Students who are ready to test each Friday need to bring their booklet to school and have a parent initial. Students who forget one or the other will not be tested. To conserve paper, please do not “misplace” booklets. Make sure they are kept in a safe place J