Parent Tips

Letter confusions:  This happens most commonly between letters that are visually similar: b, d, p, q, m, w, n, u, t, j...many times it's a matter of orientation.  Students can be supported with some of these by using the verbal directions for forming letters.  This sheet was sent home in the yellow homework folder. Particularly tricky is the b/d confusion.  Focus on one letter - "d", for example.  To form it, one would make a "c" first then, add the line to create the "d".  The letter "d" can be formed while saying aloud, " 'c' then, 'd' ", as the above actions are performed.

Warmer weather - proper apparel and sun safety.  Please ensure that students wear tops that cover their shoulders (not spaghetti straps or muscle shirts).  This is part of our dress code.  Also ensure that footwear is appropriate and supports active participation in all learning experiences at school (indoors and outdoors).  This makes runners and sturdy sandals the best.  We stress that laced shoes must be independently managed by the student.  They become safety hazards otherwise. In anticipation of sunnier weather, Sunscreen may be needed.  The children spend at least 20 minutes at a time when out for recesses.  The sunscreen can be applied at home.  If you choose to send a product in to school, please teach your child to apply it independently, as we cannot be doing so.

Help children share their thinking - Young children are capable and competent.  Help them explain their thinking or share their knowledge by asking open-ended questions, like "How do you know that?"  Expand their thinking by making "I wonder ..." comments.  Encourage them to wonder aloud.  Expand their vocabulary by giving them the proper words to name things and processes. 

SKs Reading at home -
as you have noted, books are not changed daily.  Return to these books and listen to your child reread them.  Reading familiar books builds confidence and fluency in processing.  Play some games to ensure that they are looking at the words - have them "hunt" and "trap" some high frequency words.  If the students get stuck on a word while reading - prompt with, "Get that word started and think about the story."

JKs - continue to review letter names and their sounds.  Practise letter formation as the pages come it in other media: crayons, chalk, paint.  Encourage proper formation by referring to the verbal instruction that have been added to the take-home folders.

Offer the students opportunity to write: record their ideas; send a simple message (card, letter) to someone; write a grocery list; make a plan; create a story...

Number Sense - This is 6.
Three ways to show 6:  dots; number; ten frame, a manipulative (concrete object) employed to explore math concepts in the classroom.  In this case, the focus is Number Sense.  You can see this in the photo gallery.

Playing simple card and board games at home will help reinforce many math concepts.  to name a few: snake and ladders; Uno; Snap; checkers; tic-tac-toe; dominoes...

Encourage transfer of knowledge in one area to another - this will consolidate the understanding and students with become more skillful in applying their knowledge in different ways.

Learning Through Knowledge

We have to start somewhere...

Researchers suggest building upon the knowledge students already bring to a topic can enhance the likelihood of developing a genuine understanding of concepts and maximizes the ability to transfer new knowledge in the future. - Mar 24 2015

It’s true that knowledge gives students something to think about, but a reading of the research literature from cognitive science shows that knowledge does much more than just help students hone their thinking skill: it actually makes learning easier.


Play simple board games (snakes and ladders, ...) and card games to support numeracy skills.

Reinforcing Independence - children are finding some clothing difficult to manage.  Please consider using pants with elasticized waistbands.  Zippers are tricky to manipulate - some practice at home will help facilitate growing independence with this.  Velcro or slip on shoes accommodate quick transitions when changing foot apparel.  Please make sure that your child can tie laces before wearing the shoes to school.


Resources for parents
created by the Ontario Ministry of Education:

Take Home Reading Folders

Some students will start with Alpha Readers that focus on one of the letters we have formally reviewed.  Point to the word and read it.  Have your child repeat what you do.  Bring attention to the focus letter.  Name it and make the sound.  Have your child do the same.  Review the Sound Books that come home often.  Other students will receive early readers.  Books will not be changed out daily, so reread books, as students find something new to notice whenever they go back to a familiar book.  There independence increases with familiarity.  They become freer about taking risks when solving 'tricky' parts.


Ideas About Language and Math

Some students will be reviewing letter names and sounds.  Check the calendar to view which ones will be the focus.  Sound Books will go home for you to support your children with this task. It is a quick exercise, meant to be relaxed and fun.  Other students will have some take home books to read.  Assessments are still under way.  Please remember to keep materials safe and to return them to student mailbags for school.  
Math experiences in class vary.  We will be exploring different principles through games and real life experiences.  Math is everywhere: addresses, labels - it's all around.  Ask for help setting the table or putting groceries away.  One-to-one correspondence and sorting are happening when engaged in these activities.  Patterns are everywhere.  Discuss the repeating nature of them.  Can your child recognize, create or continue a pattern?  The "core" is what we call the repeating part. See if your child can identify it.  Some patterns grow or shrink.