• This week we have learned two new comprehension strategies. Making predictions and asking questions. You will find the lyrics to the songs below. Additionally we have started to familiarize ourselves with story elements. We have discussed Setting (The time place and sometimes the weather in a story), Characters (who the story is about) the main character (who the story is mostly about, or the star of the show), and the problem (what the main character wants). To enhance our understanding of these elements today in centers we read a familiar story and created our own variation of it. The students worked hard to discuss and rehearse what the characters would say and what their bodies would do. We will frequently use acting it out as a comprehension strategy and the choices students make as they do their performances give me great insight into their true understanding of the text. Sometimes we will act it out using an actual script to build fluency and prosody. Today was improvisational so I could see how well the students were identifying and recalling important details from the story.  This particular group did a great job with the events of the story,  but paraphrased the dialogue. As the year progresses the children will start to have interesting (and sometimes very passionate) discussions about how a character will say certain words, or what additional comments or actions a character might have. They will also learn to look back in the text to find the exact words characters say. The answers to the questions at the end will also improve. They will give a big "BECAUSE" to support each answer. It all starts here with a little idea, but these ideas grow and grow!
    Predictions: (To the tune of Row Row Row your boat)
    What will happen next? I wonder what will be?
    I think I will predict and then, I'll read and I will see.
    Ask Questions (To the tune of are you sleeping)
    I ask questions, I ask Questions,
    As I read, As I read
    Who? What? Where? When? Why?
    I will find out,
    As I read, As I read. 
    We have begun our discussion of comprehension strategies. You will note from your homework binder that these are different from decoding strategies. The first Comprehension strategy is MAKING CONNECTIONS! 
    First graders should learn to make connections between texts they have read as well as connect what they read to their own experiences. We use a hand signal to help us remember to try this strategy as well as a very helpful song. Whenever we work with stories students will be asked to use this strategy to further their understanding of the text as a whole. Ask your child if they can sing "Make Connections"
    (to the tune of la Cucaracha)
    Make connections, make connections.
    To the things that you read.
    It happened to you
    You read it before.
    You will want to read some more!!
Last Modified on September 3, 2015