Friday, 24 February 2017

A warm welcome to Room 1's 2017 blog!

Hi all Students, Parents and Whanau,

This blog will allow you all to share in the new and exciting learning that occurs in our wonderful class.
It has been a busy first four weeks, all students have now settled into our daily routine.

As you already know, all students will be bring home a  book everyday. Generally speaking, every second day they will bring a self-selected book rather than their guided reading book (settled by me.) Please record in their yellow reading log every time you read with them.
Every Thursday, a new poem will come home. I hope that this poem is reread  and discussed several times.

This week we were visited by Constable Cyrus, the Parnell Community Police Office.
Over three lessons, we discussed road safety, crossing the road and the importance of seatbelts.

Here are some photos!

This week we have also been looking at writing instructions.

Here are a few excellent examples!

More to come soon!

Have a lovely weekend

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Home learning

Kereru team Homework.
I have had some questions about homework so I will take the opportunity to answer them and explain about homework in the Kereru team........
Research tells us that not much is gained from 6 year olds doing lots of homework. But it is a good idea to get children into the habit of attending to some short, formal activities related to school from time to time.
READING: We expect children to read at home, to an adult, daily. This might be their reader from their group lesson, their independent reading book selected by them from a box below their instructional level which will be ‘easy’ for them, their library book which you may need to read to them, and on Friday it will be their poem book –yes believe it or not, this IS reading and you need to sign it to show you have either listened to them read their poems, or helped them to read them, or you may have read some of the poems to them.
If there is no book in the book bag, it does not mean no reading. It simply means that you should ask them to select a book from home to read to you, or for you to read to them.
Read to your child as often as possible for as many years as they will listen. My own daughter was still listening to stories when she was a teenager as she listened while I read to her younger brothers. She talks about those books still, many years later. Picture books are great for discussing pictures and stories. A family chapter book is a wonderful way to engage in conversation, in teaching children how to react to a mystery or a scary moment or a joyful one. Read in English or in your home language. Children need to hear the richness of language read by a competent reader.
SPELLING:  Home Learning Book:  In it will be a variety of guides for you to read. Please do so. There will be a list of spelling words which they can practise at home according to the guide. Three or four or five words a week is fine to learn. They should be able to tell you a sentence using the word, and they should be able to write the word. They may want to write a sentence using the words. They can practise this in the Home Learning Book using one double page a week. When they know the words (and this may take a week or more) they can tell me and I will check their progress. This is Home Learning and may not always be “marked.” We do not “test” these words. They are practised in class  in various ways, after the child has learned them.
BASIC FACTS: We expect the students to learn basic facts as set out in the guide in the Home Learning Book. Those who know their basic facts with instant recall are far better equipped to move along in Maths. Remember you can play number games in the car, walking the dog etc.
Mathletics: Tasks will be set according to the student’s level, once we get underway. One or two tasks a week is what is expected and if they are keen to do more, they can go onto Rainforest Maths on the Mathletics site. Plenty of excellent activities there.

We want our students to spend time playing outside, exploring, climbing, using balls and bats, running, having fun. From years of experience we know this makes for a far happier student than one which is made to sit doing Homework for long periods of time when they are only 5 or 6 years old. Please attend to the necessary items over a 10 to 15 minute timeframe , then let them play outside.    Thanks -     Jill Bonniface, Kereru Team Leader.

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Rocket Scientists

We think our students work hard and are pretty clever, and as it turns out they are all rocket scientists!
On Friday, our buddy class worked with us to develop a rocket using straws, plasticine and a paper fin.  We all had a very focused and fun session working out a design, and it was great seeing our Year 5 and 6 buddies from Room 28 leading and facilitating learning with students in Room 1.  I wonder who made some modifications to the rocket during the weekend?  Could you make it fly further?

Statistics and sorting

We have been looking at gathering data (information) and how to organise and then share it.  We can use tally marks to count, and we can form a bar graph.  As part of this learning, we are practising sorting objects into categories based on shape, size, colour or pattern.  We are confident!

Monday, 22 February 2016

Welcome to Room 1, 2016!

Welcome whanau to Room 1 in the Kereru team.  We are all looking forward to an exciting year of learning, and will endeavour to keep you posted with what we are up to on this blog page.

Today we have an open classroom from 4:30-5:45 for you to meet the teachers, and then you can join other families on the field for the annual school picnic.

If you are unable to make it, I have included some information below for you to peruse.  I look forward to meeting you and working with your child to develop their skills and knowledge in academic and social areas of understanding.

Kind regards, Gretchen Werder.

Timetable for Room 1:

Readers go home

Return poetry books

Home learning books go home

Full school assembly 12:30 (even weeks)

Kereru assembly 2:30 (odd weeks)
Readers go home

Library day – return 2 books and choose 2 more
Readers go home
Readers go home
Poetry books go home

Return home learning books

Check spelling

PE lesson (odd weeks)

Buddy class (even weeks)

It is essential for students to bring book bags every day.  They protect readers and library books from accidental spillages, and make it easier to check for readers, home learning books and any notices or reminders that may come home.  If there is no book bag, your child will not bring home a reader as we need to really look after our resources at school.


Spelling checklist for parents

·         Talk about words – their meaning and structure
·         Ask your child to write words
·         Play word games with your child – word finds, scrabble . . .
·         Show your child how to use resources – dictionary, thesaurus, atlas. Let your child see you also using these resources.
·         Make lists of words about home, family, community and personal interests
·         Talk about related words – e.g sign, signal and signature
·         Encourage your child to identify OWN errors with your support
·         Engage your child in word building activities – e.g jump, jumps, jumped, jumper, jumping
·         Encourage your child to have a go and try words they don’t know how to spell. Write the correct form for your child and have them copy it into a home-made dictionary

Maths checklist for parents

·         Discuss what everyday numbers mean e.g 50%, ½, $99.99
·         Play games together like Snakes and Ladders, Monopoly and Cards games
·         Work together on problems around the house e.g how many eggs do we have altogether? How many would we have if we bought another carton?
·         Ask your child to explain how they work things out and encourage more than one solution method
·         Help your child to manage time and money
·         Help your child learn their basic facts – in the car on trips, written lists on the wall, test while preparing dinner etc
·         Use cards as flash cards for basic facts
·         Use tens frames to help your child visualize number patterns
·         Count forwards and more importantly, count backwards together
Skip count together e.g 2, 4, 6, 8, . . . .  and  3, 6, 9, 12 . . .  . etc
·         Bake together and discuss measurements and proportions
·         Explore websites together e.g , , , ,

General information for parents

The Ministry of Education provides information on schooling in New Zealand: 

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Float or sink?

We have been learning about all the people who came to New Zealand before the invention of aircraft.  In room 1 we had to make a boat to see if we could design and create a structure that would float and hold a toy animal for 10 seconds.  The vessels all looked so different, but only two of them sank, which was pretty good!
Here are some photos of our testing...

If you want to make a boat that will float, you need to think about some important things...
Firstly, you need to have a shape that will stay stable and balance in the water.  Having air in it helps to keep it afloat.  The materials all need to be able to float.  Some of our boats were waterproofed with tape so they would not get soggy and sink.  A lot of real boats are made out of fibreglass, steel, aluminium or wood.