Newsletter for May 22-25, 2023

Kidcadia Field Trip

We are all set for our field trip. We will be walking to Kidcadia after our lunch. We will have bellies, so please do not send any extra money for food. We plan to leave at about 11:40.

Please have your first grader wear socks and gym shoes. If your child would like to bring a disposable, plastic water bottle, that is fine. (Just in case it is left behind or lost, then it is not a big deal.) I will write your child’s name on it with a marker.

It is my first time going to Kidcadia. The first graders have told me quite a bit about it.

  • Monday, May 22 – Pizza Monday 1$ per slice and our field trip to Kidcadia.
  • Wednesday, May 24 – I will be out for a doctor’s appointment in the morning. Ms. MacDonald will be my guest teacher. I will be back in the afternoon.
  • Thursday, May 25 – PARENT APPRECIATION LUNCHEON AT 2:15 pm *** Please pick up your tickets from the office.*** Parents…we love you!
  • Friday, May 26 – No School
  • Monday, May 29 – Memorial Day – No School
  • Monday – J = Joke Day – Students will have an opportunity to share a joke.
  • Tuesday – K = Kindness Day – Students will have an opportunity to write a kind note to a friend.
  • Wednesday – L = Learn about what we LOVE Day – Bring something you love.
  • Thursday – M = Math Challenge Day – We will play around the world fast math fact challenge.

The school year is quickly coming to a close. It is crucial that your child is here so that I can finish up the NWEA, the Developmental Reading Assessments, etc. I cannot accept any late work to add grades or change grades on the final report card once they are due. Missing assessments are unexcused and entered as a zero. Please try your best to have your first grader make it for the last few weeks.


We are finishing up our last Benchmark Unit. We will spread it out over the next few weeks.


Developmental Reading Assessments are underway. I have 1/4 of the class finished. I will be working on these for the next 2 weeks.


The writing assessment for the end of the year is complete. We had strict instructions to administer it this past week. We will be comparing the first narrative assessment with this last narrative assessment for your child’s growth goal.

That doesn’t mean we are finished writing. We are still required to learn to write a “How to…” paper.


Last spelling test. After this week, we will review spelling words and have a mini spelling bee in the classroom. This last list might be the trickiest of them all. FYI…it has been a class rule since the middle of April to bring the spelling homework book back to school on a Friday or it is a clip-down. It is also a rule to actually do the spelling homework or it is a clip-down. That is part of being responsible. All of the children know this.

  • penny
  • puppy
  • windy
  • lucky
  • hockey
  • turkey
  • chimney
  • valley
  • any
  • blue
  • eight
  • answer


We are trying our best to finish module 4. We are adding and subtracting double-digit numbers.


We are finishing up our sound and light unit. Once that is finished, we will explore with Mystery Science.

Thank you for your support.

Mrs. Korte

Newsletter for May 15 – 19, 2024

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms, grandmas, and caregivers. You’re amazing! Enjoy your day.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all of the love this week. I know it was teacher appreciation week, but I truly appreciate you and the trust you give me with your little one. Thank you, though, for all of the treats.

If you haven’t returned your child’s field trip permission slip yet, please know that it is due Wednesday. If you are planning to walk with us, you must come to the office and fill out an ichat form.

This is our School ABC countdown to summer calendar. We had a blast making suncatchers on the 9th and Bingo with Ms MacDonald on the 10th. However, the Dance Party on Friday the 12th was AWESOME!

  • Monday, May 15 – PIZZA MONDAY! We saved our money from last week.
    • We check out a book from the Geer Park Library – Please make sure your child returns their book to school.
  • Wednesday, May 17 – Late Start

It’s officially here. The testing window is open for the end of the year. I will start our writing assessment for the student growth goals this week. It is SO important they have good attendance this week.

I have started the reading assessments. I got through only 2 this week. Please bare with me…they take for ever because they are a 1 to 1 assessment.

Also, I will start testing the Reading and Math NWEA.


We are in the second week of our last Benchmark unit.

Writing – The students have to write a story. They need to have good sentences with sequencing words.

Reading – I’m testing.

Spelling – Second to last list. Hang in there…we are almost finished. Please have your child do their spelling homework. It makes a huge difference in their ability to write and read.

  • fall
  • wall
  • small
  • dawn
  • fawn
  • drawn
  • taught
  • caught
  • mother
  • father
  • never
  • below


We will finish up with greater than >, less than <, and equal to = comparisons. Then we will move onto adding two digit number. I will show the student MANY ways.


We are learning about transparent, translucent, and opaque materials. We will learn why we have a shadow when there is a light source.

Social Studies

We are finishing up with Social Studies this week.

Thank you so much for all of your constant support. You truly are the best.

Mrs. Korte

Field Trip Permission Slip

A permission slip will be in your child’s Take Home Folder today. 

    * It must be returned by May 17th.  

    * You must fill in both pages.  (permission slip and risk release form)

    * If you would like to be a chaperone, you must come to the office this week and complete the iChat form.

This is a walking field trip so we will not be taking a bus and we will not need drivers.

Thank you for your support.


Mrs. Korte

Newsletter for May 8 – 12, 2023

Assessments are upon us. I know with the longer days and beautiful weather, getting our first graders to bed at a reasonable time is tricky. Please try your best for the next few weeks of May. We are starting all of our end of the year assessments. We have writing, reading, and we will start our NWEA assessments in a week. Thank you, thank you for all of your support.

  • Monday, May 8 – Pizza Day! $1 per slice
  • Wednesday, May 10 – I will be at the Galileo Professional Development session with Mrs. Faraj. I have a teacher, whom I worked with for years, covering my class.
  • Friday, May 12 – We have a PTA sponsored program for the students.


We will start our last 3 week unit is the benchmark series.

Reading – Students will get books at their level to read, but I must start the Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA) for the students. This is a one to one test. To get 20 complete, it takes a long time.

Writing – We finished our Social Studies/Opinion cross curricular writing on Friday. We are required to write a narrative story and compare it with writing at the beginning of the year. This writing will go into their writing folder.

Spelling – This week the words have a silent k, silent w, and silent g at the beginning of words.

  • know
  • knot
  • knife
  • write
  • wrote
  • wreck
  • gnat
  • gnome
  • very
  • learn
  • carry
  • better


We will finish Topic A with 10s and 1s with dimes and pennies. We have a topic quiz on Tuesday. Then we will be comparing numbers. We will read from left to right we will use the symbols >,<, and = when comparing. I just found this resource. I will share the lesson information from now on.


We are getting to light. I meant to start teaching about it last week but we focused on social studies.

Social Studies

We will finish up our timelines this week.

Thank you for your support. Have a great week.

Mrs. Korte

Newsletter for May 1-5, 2023

This is our last full month of first grade. This last month will be filled with assessments. I need to start testing everyone’s individual reading level with the Developmental Reading Assessment. This assessment is 1 to 1. Therefore it takes a long time to complete. We have the NWEA for both reading and math. I will be administering the NWEA in small groups. This starts the third week in May.

Fun Friday

It was a really fun Friday. Thanks to the Geer Park PTA we had a Spring Egg Hunt. I did it a bit differently from the other classes. I numbered the eggs 1-20 on 5 sets of eggs. Then they were hidden all around the room. The kids could see some as they walked into the room and they were already planning how they were going to sprint to get the eggs that they could see. Before the hunt, I explained that they could look at any egg they found BUT they could only take the 5 eggs with their own number. They had a great time AND it wasn’t crazy in the room (which I like).

THEN…we had our pizza party!

The kids earn points by being complimented by other teachers. It can be while they are walking in the hallway, when I pick them up from lunch, from the art, music, enrichment, and media center teachers, and on the playground. On Thursday, they earned 3 points. So…

I had pizza delivered on Friday. We had pizza and juice for a snack while we watched a science Magic School Bus video.


  • Monday, May 1st – Pizza Monday has returned. I still have everyone’s money from Ramadan. For example, Afnan has 10$ for a box of pizza already.
  • Monday, May 1st – We check out a library book from the media center. Please make sure you return your old book.
  • Thursday, May 4th – ONLY Mrs. Nasir has to cancel tutoring.
  • Friday, May 5th – MUFFINS with MOMS – 8:15-9:15 in the media center. Yay!

For future planning…

  • Wednesday, May 17th – Late Start
  • Monday, May 22nd – Walking Field Trip to Kidcadia – Details to come
  • Thursday, May 24th – Parent Appreciation Luncheon – Details to come
  • Friday, June 2nd – Staff v 5th grade Kickball Game
  • Tuesday, June 13th – Field Day
  • Thursday, June 15th – Last day of school – 1/2 day

As mentioned at the beginning of the newsletter, May is filled with testing, but I will also be really working hard to finish up our Benchmark ELA series and Module 4 in Math. Remember, it is not a matter of whether you have any homework. You should say to your first grader, “Please, get your homework and get started.” Homework to look for:

  • Monday-Thursday – Spelling
  • Monday-Friday – Reading and I am going to add a word list. I am adding a word list because I am a bit surprised at how many previous spelling words some of the first graders are struggling to read.
  • Monday-Friday – Math (The only time your first grader will not have math homework is when we have a quiz or test. For example, Thursday we had a quiz and Friday we had the end of Module 5 assessment, thus no homework.)

I don’t know how to stress this enough. I can tell when a student is not reading their reading book bag books. It is also a bummer for the student to be taken out of a reading group because they can’t keep up. Please have them read their book bag books.


We are on our last week of the Unit 9 Benchmark. We are on pace for finishing Unit 10, as well, by the end of May.

READING – Believe it or not, I ask your child to take their book bag home everyday. If it is not coming home, please help me remind them.

WRITER’S WORKSHOP – We are finishing up a cross curricular writing about taking a stand. They had to say whether or not they would like more winter recess or continue to stay inside when it is cold and snowy. We will move one to a “How to…” piece of writing next.

SPELLING – /oo/ spelling pattern this week. It can be pronounced two different ways.

  • bloom
  • room
  • gloom
  • doom
  • hood
  • good
  • wood
  • stood
  • does
  • wash
  • some (This might be a repeat from a different list.)
  • another


We are starting Module 4 on Monday. This will be looking at place value (tens and ones). We will be adding and taking away tens and ones.


We will finish up with learning about sound and sound waves this week and take a quiz. Then we will start learning about light.

Social Studies

We learned about artifacts last week. This week we will compare when we could do in the past, what we can do now, and predict what we will do in the future. It will kind of be a growth timeline.

Thank you so much for your support. Have a great weekend and week ahead.

Mrs. Korte

Newsletter for April 24 – 28, 2023

Eid Mubarak to all those who celebrated this weekend. We have a full week but a late start on Wednesday.

  • Tuesday, April 25 – I am required to attend a District meeting all day. Ms. Sabbrah will be our guest teacher.
  • Wednesday, April 26 – Late Start – The first bell rings at 9:55.


  • Writer’s Workshop – We finished our opinion assessment on Wednesday. We will write a cross-curricular opinion about winter recess this week. It is cross-curricular because a Social Studies requirement is to take a stand on a school topic.
  • We are in our second week of the Unit 8 Benchmark. It is about goods and services, which is a review of a past topic in Social Studies.
  • Spelling – Your first grader has spelling practice every day except Friday. It is not a question of “Do you have homework?” It should be “Get your spelling homework booklet.”
    • joy
    • boy
    • toy
    • foil
    • coil
    • soil
    • coin
    • join
    • walk
    • buy
    • only
    • through (This will be the trickiest one. I taught my own kids to sound out /thr/, then say o,u,g,h.


We are learning about analog and digital clocks. We are reading the time on the hour and the half. We will be finished with Module 5 by the end of the week. We will go back to Module 4, which we skipped so that the students had exposure to geometry and clocks before the Spring NWEA Math assessment.


We are learning about vibrations and sound. We will finish it up this week and move on to light.

Social Studies

We will be looking at artifacts of items from the past and matching them with things we use today.

Thank you for all of your support. Have a great week.

Mrs. Korte

Newsletter for April 17-19, 2023

First of all…please accept my apology. I forgot to send a newsletter for last week. It all boils down to family commitments getting in the way.

I hope it was a blessed Easter for those who celebrated. I hope it is a blessed Eid for those celebrating this coming week. I wish everyone an abundance of joy, happiness, love, and peace in the year ahead.

  • Monday – Wednesday – The Geer Park PTA will be hosting an Eid shop. It will be open from noon to 3:00. I will send down small groups to shop
  • Thursday – Friday – No School – Eid Mubarak!

This week will be business as usual for Writer’s Workshop, Math, Science, and Social Studies. However, due to the short week, we will not have new spelling words and we will be reviewing concepts from previous weeks.

Homework and materials…there will almost always be spelling, math, or both, as well as, reading each night for homework. It isn’t a question of, do you have homework? It should be a statement each night…Get out your homework and get started. There is a huge comprehension gap between the student doing their homework and those not doing their homework. I can see it during whole group and small-group instruction. I can also see it in grades.

FYI, now that we are in the 4th quarter, I am expecting the students to be responsible. It is their responsibility to be prepared with their materials. Unfortunately, there might be a few clip downs for not being prepared.


  • Writer’s Workshop – We will start our final opinion writing. They must pick a wild animal and tell why it is their favorite. This is an assessment using concepts taught throughout this scaffolded unit.
  • Benchmark – Unit 9 Week 1 – We will finish up the stuff from last week on Monday.
  • Review – Reviewing close reading, blends, digraphs, and pronouns.
  • Spelling – Sorry about not sending the words last week. Overall though, the class did MUCH better on the assessment this week than two weeks ago.


We are working on fair shares when dividing shapes. We are working on halves and quarters/fourths. We are comparing fractions. We will be moving to analog and digital clocks soon.


We learned about how a back and forth movement is a vibration. Vibrations make sounds. Lots of hands on experiences during this unit.


We are learning about National holidays and why we have them. We are also discussing cultural holidays and how it is important to be aware of holidays other people celebrate. Our theme all year has been to embrace our own culture and learn about the culture of others. We have an inquisitive, caring, and accepting bunch. I love this.

Have a great week and may those who are celebrating have a blessed Eid.

Mrs. Korte

Early Pick Up if You Want

Due to the rain and weather, Mrs. Faraj is permitting early pick-up to prevent traffic congestion at the end of the day. If you want to pick your child up early, please come to the office and sign your child out.

Also, no tutoring tonight.

Mrs. Korte

Newsletter for April 3-6, 2023

Welcome back families! I hope you had a lovely week off with your first grader. We have a short week, but we will be jumping right back into classroom expectations, routines, and learning.

The penny wars end on Wednesday. All of the proceeds from our Penny Wars fundraiser will go to the Amity Foundation for their efforts in supporting the victims of Turkey and Syrian Earthquakes.

Let’s try to collect as many pennies for our class as possible. Let’s also try to put quarters, nickels, and dimes in other classroom buckets.

This is a short week.

  • Monday – Wednesday – Penny Wars and Iftar tickets will be for sale in the office.
  • Thursday – Our Iftar dinner will take place on Thursday, April 6th, 2023 at 7:30pm.
  • Friday – No School

Grades were submitted Friday before Spring Break. Absences this week may result in lower grades in Math and ELA on the report card.

ELA BLOCK – We are finishing up the Unit 8 Benchmark booklet this week.

  • Reading – I see almost all of the small groups every day. Fluency and comprehension are the focus. It is concerning when a first grader struggles with a past spelling word. Those are writing and reading words. They are interconnected with our Benchmark reading.
  • Writer’s Workshop – We are starting our second scaffolded opinion piece on Monday. We will be writing our opinion about a favorite superhero.
  • Spelling – The spelling test will be on Thursday. These words are R-controlled vowels. Please note and practice the patterns.
    • turn
    • burn
    • churn
    • skirt
    • shirt
    • squirt
    • stern
    • fern
    • every
    • near
    • school
    • earth

MATH – We are starting Module 5: Geometry. (Yes, we are temporarily skipping Module 4 so that we have exposure to Geometry before the Spring NWEA.) Math Homework will begin again on Monday. (I could not send it home during Module 3, because there were too many math manipulatives that the students needed to use. )

SOCIAL STUDIES/SCIENCE – This week we will be starting our Social Studies unit about the past, present, and future. We will be reviewing what we learned in our ELA benchmark book. We will practice reading a calendar and reviewing some federal holidays. We will also start our final science unit: Light and Sound.

Thank you for your support. Please work to have your child at school every day and on time.

Your partner in teaching.

Mrs. Korte