Mrs Sarafa's Class Blog

Dearborn Public Schools

Newsletter for October 11th

What We Did During Our Week:

Reading and Writing:

We continue to write narratives during writer’s workshop. We are adding details to our stories and making sure that our story makes sense and is in chronological order!

We have been working on vowels all week. They should now be familiar with all the short vowels! They are confident with them in class, and writing words while identifying which vowel is in the middle! Next week we will move onto long vowels. 

practicing sight words with “whack a word”!
Practicing sight words with “Feed the bear” and “Feed the unicorn”!
Ms. Joumaa helps out in our classroom everyday for small group reading!
Read to self expert!


1st grade math – we are working on knowing basic computation quickly. Your child should be confident with adding small numbers. We are also working on recognizing and creating equal expressions. (Ex: 4+3=2+5) We will be taking our mid module assessment after next week!

Kindergarten math – we are focusing on forming the written numbers properly and working on ways to make 5!


We did a classroom experiment this week with focusing on making sound through vibrations. We used rulers on the edge of our desks to make sound effects for a ball falling to the ground. The kids had a blast!


I never posted our class picture from picture day, so see below!

We also have a quick social time in the morning – the kids build together, play together, and imagine together first thing in the morning. This is a great time to work on social emotional learning, and to get excited about a new day of school!

Building a haunted house during morning social time
Team work during morning social time
Building and creating with playdoh and Popsicle sticks
They looked great!

Upcoming Events:

Wednesday, October 16th – LATE START

Friday, October 25th – Apple Orchard Field Trip! Bring a disposable lunch please

Thursday, October 31st – Halloween Party and Halloween Parade (more info to come)

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Newsletter for October 4th

What We Did During Our Week:

Reading and Writing:

We have been working on writing narratives during writer’s workshop. They write their story in sequential order using ‘first, next, last’. We are also working on asking questions about our writing so that we can use this information to add more details. 

For our writer’s workshop model, they do pre-writing, drafting, editing, conferencing with me, and then get to publish and share their work!

Step 1 – Pre-writing
Step 2 – Drafting
Step 3 – Editing and Conferencing
Step 4 – Publishing
Step 5 – Sharing

For reading we have learning about syllables and knowing how to count them. In addition, we are using syllables to help us stretch out reading and writing longer words. They completed a seesaw assignment for syllables. 

We have introduced the vowels. We went around the room to find vowels in our writings, and have focused on the short a vowel so far. 

Going on a sight word safari!
Doing some “blends” word work!

Reading book bags should be coming home every single night. Make sure that you child is reading from this every night. Reading has been proven to be the most effective way to help with academics!

We also wrote goals that we have for the year! They each wrote a behavior goal, a math goal, and then a reading/writing goal!


Math books were finally sent home! You should have started this week with the appropriate lesson stapled to the front. Try to do one lesson a day at home, but I do not need these sent back to me. 🙂

Science and social studies:

We are learning about how to be a good citizen for social studies and will begin learning about sound in science!


We had a fundraiser assembly on Thursday for Otis Spunkmeyer.

Field trip forms were sent home, please return these no later than the 11th. If you would like to chaperone or attend the field trip with us, please indicate so on the form and provide $5 for you. 

Looking forward to our first field trip!

Upcoming Events:

Friday, October 11th – half day pick up at 11:40am

Wednesday, October 16th – LATE START

Friday, October 25th – Apple Orchard Field Trip!

Thursday, October 31st – Halloween Party!

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Just a friendly reminder that there is NO SCHOOL tomorrow for Kindergarten.

First graders still come to school. 🙂

Thank you!

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Design a Poster Challenge

Please see link below if interested in entering a poster design contest – posters due this Friday, the 27th!
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Newsletter for September 20th

What We Did During Our Week:
(Sorry – dropped the ball on pictures for this week!)

Also – we have had a lot of ill children in our classroom this week, please emphasis washing hands and covering coughs at home! 🙂

Reading and Writing:

This week we introduced seesaw! You should have received a letter about it with a QR code. Please download the app on your phone so that you can see work that your child is doing in school! This is not homework, rather a fun way to interact with you child. You can like, comment, and leave voice recordings for them to hear while they are at school! 🙂

We worked on read to self this week, and work on writing. Specifically, we discussed that when we read we need to stop every couple of pages, and check for understanding. Comprehension is important for reading! If we don’t understand, then we can go back and re-read.

When they go to work on writing in their notebooks, they write a topic for the day of their choosing and write for 20 twenty minutes! It is during this time that I am working with them either one-on-one or in small groups. 

Reading book bags have started to be sent home! Their book bags will come home every day! Please read these books every night. These books are at your child’s independent and instructional level, so they should be the ones reading the books. 🙂

1st grade:

In addition to their book bags, there is a reading response journal. Check these daily, because we will put prompts in there for your child to respond to during the night. These response journals help grow their comprehension skills. 


We are still waiting on our math books from the district, once they arrive they will be sent home for daily math homework. 

Kindergarten: We have worked on counting up and down from 10, and knowing that if you change the grouping of numbers, the number itself still stays the same. 

1st grade: We have been working on number bonds to 10, and solving word problems. We will now be moving along to addition. Their first quiz will be on Monday! These will be sent home for you to see how they’re doing with math as we progress for this first unit.

Upcoming Events:

Thursday, Sep 26th – 1st PBIS Celebration – yard games to celebrate positive behavior!

Wednesday, Sep 25th – LATE START


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Newsletter for September 13th

What We Did During Our Week:

We finished up our second round of computer testing, NWEA, the math portion. Your child’s score will be sent home at the end of September along with a progress report. These reports are just an informal snap shot so you can see how your child is doing! I’m aiming to send one home at the end of each month. 🙂

We continue to work on read to self, and have introduced work on writing as well. When they go to work on writing, they get to write about whatever they’d like! So, we made a heart map this week where they filled out what is important to them. They use this heart map as inspiration when they go to work on writing.

As you saw from open house, we also did a fun craft and wrote about “my future is so bright because”!

Math books have still not arrived from district, when they do they will be sent home and there will be daily math homework to complete.

First graders:

We are reviewing numbers that make 10, and going over what a “number bond” is. Your child should be able to know that 5 and 2 make 7, that 4 and 1 make 5, that 8 and 2 make 10, etc. We will be moving into addition and subtraction within this month.

For reading…book bags will begin to come home next week once we have finished assessing your child’s reading level. A reading response journal will also be in their book bag. Please read every night, and check the journal for an assignment.

Kindergartners: We are working on numbers to 10, and discussing sorting as well as distinguishing between things that are exactly the same versus things that are almost the same.

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A late reminder….please have t-shirt money and form turned either today or Monday if you would like a t-shirt for your kindergartner student!

Thank you!

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Zearn Class Code/Open House


If you are having trouble logging onto Zearn and need the class code please see below.

First Grade Zearn Code: UQ9C6A

Kindergarten Zearn Code: M54N9G

As a reminder, open house is tonight from 6-7:30 pm! See you then! 🙂

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Newsletter for September 6th

What We Did During Our Week:

We continue to get to know one another and our classroom rules. We read a lot of great books. “Pigeon has to go to school!”, and then they wrote about what they want to learn about this school year. We also read “Wemberly Worried”. We talked about how it’s okay to feel sad or worried sometimes and then we made a classroom book where they wrote about something they can do if they’re feeling sad or worried. 

We spent a lot of time on reading to self. We discussed that there are three ways to read a book…

  1. Read the pictures
  2. Read the words
  3. Retell the story

See pictures below of us reading!

In the afternoon we have been doing hands-on activities like building with gears and blocks, manipulating abcs and sight words, and completing word puzzles while I have been testing everyone one-on-one. 

We did complete one test of NWEA. This is a computer based test that students take 3 times a year in both reading and math. We can look at your child’s score during fall conferences. Next week we will take the math portion of the test.

Our math materials have arrived and we will be beginning math next week. Look for a homework book that will be coming home on Monday. We are starting lesson 1 on Monday, and will be doing a lesson a day. You should complete lesson 1 homework on Monday, and continue to do a lesson a day at home as well. These are practice books that stay at home. They do not need to be turned in to school, just keep up with the work at home. 🙂

We had an all-school assembly on Friday about “being buddies, not bullies”, and had some great discussion afterwards about how to be a friend or help others if they need it. 

First grade spelling words for next week:

Upcoming Events:

Thursday, Sep 17 – Open House 6-7:30pm

Wednesday, Sep 25 – late start

Thursday, Sep 26 – KINDER parent meeting at Haigh 8-8:30am

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Newsletter for August 29th

What We Did During Our Week:


We have a fantastic class and are going to have an awesome year! I sent home a colorful welcome packet in your child’s blue folder for the 1st week of school. So, I’m not going to reiterate all of that information here. This newsletter will come out every Friday, and it will be full of information on what we did in school, and it will include lots of pictures!

This week we got to know one another. We played lots of games, went over our classroom expectations, went to a few specials (technology, art, music and gym). We had a welcome back assembly with Mr. Short and met lots of other friends outside on the playground.

Next week we will be getting our full schedule, and then I will let you know what day we have gym on.

Our class size is small compared to other classrooms so that we can allow for a lot of one-on-one and small group time. Within these groups is when we work at your child’s academic level.  At the end of the year, your child will certainly be ready for the next grade.

We read a lot of great back- to-school books, and talked about ways to be kind and include everyone in our classroom. We have started our alphabet review, with a specific focus on handwriting. This is something that all first grade classes do at the beginning of the year. Kindergartners will work at a much slower pace on alphabet when in small groups.

As the first graders had the afternoon all to ourselves…

We started daily 5 – and worked on read to self. They did an excellent job! First graders will begin word family review as well next week with their first spelling test being next Friday!  They have gotten their 1st grade composition notebooks, and we wrote about summer vacation! No longer do they have pictures in their notebooks, we have a strong emphasis on writing in 1st grade!

Summer Vacation Writing!
Practicing read to self!

Next week we hit the ground running and really start to get our curriculum going!

Of course, we will still take time to get to know one another, and our classroom but a lot more learning will begin next week. J Have a relaxing and long weekend!

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