PS/IS 686 | Brooklyn, NY

Grade 1, Class 101

Good morning families!

First of all, I really hope to see many of you tomorrow evening at the BSI Gala! My husband and I will be there for a bit and we’re hoping you’re there as well! Here are some upcoming important dates:

  1. Saturday, May 13 BSI Gala, 6:30pm
  2. Monday, May 15 Poetry & Tea , 9am
  3. Wednesday, May 17 Family Math Night, 4:30 – 7:30pm
  4. Friday, May 26 Family & Friends Day
  5. Tuesday, June 13 May, June & July Birthday Celebration, 1:30pm
  6. Tuesday, June 27 End of Year Celebration, 1:30pm


Here’s an update from the week.


As part of our measurement unit, we have been focusing on addition strategies. We are primarily using the open number line (mentioned last week) as our strategy and model.

Some of our Addition Goals:

  • add ten to a given number, and discuss place value pattern that occurs
  • utilize landmark numbers in order to add two amounts
  • decompose numbers based on place value as a strategy for addition

Here are two examples of the kinds of problems that students have been solving. Please feel free to come up with similar problems at home. Then, let your child use what he/she knows about landmark numbers (10, 20, 40, etc.) to show/explain their thinking when adding other numbers.

Combining Borders, Day 1 Practice

Combining Borders, Day 2 Practice

We also worked on an addition “math string” today. This string was designed so that these addition problems were in an order that suggested one way of combining the numbers.  We used the vocabulary addend and sum to help students notice which numbers were remaining the same, and which numbers were changing. When students noticed a change, they were asked to explain the change.

Here’s what we did today, so see what your child remembers and can explain! (I also included a few pictures of 101 hard at work!)



Social Studies:

Help is still needed! We need at least 2 volunteers (for any of these time slots) in order to make our final community walks a success. If you’re able, please consider joining us for 30-45 minutes on either…

  1. Monday 5/15 (Right after our poetry share!)
  2. Monday 5/15 (1:30pm)
  3. Tuesday 5/16 (1:30pm)
  4. Wednesday 5/17 (9:25am OR 11:40pm)

***If any of these times are possible, please e-mail me. I’ll confirm as soon as I have 2 volunteers.***

HOME EXTENSION: This weekend, students will be bringing home their sketch pads. If you have 20-30 minutes to let them walk around your block/neighborhood while they sketch and record their observations, that would be amazing. We are comparing neighborhoods in Brooklyn to see what our communities already have, and what we think they might be lacking. Here’s what we noticed about Bensonhurst, just based on our first walk…



Our poets worked really hard all week to publish their amazing poetry collections! Below I linked their publishing checklist, which they used to make sure they included all of the various kinds of poems we learned about, and tried using all of our poetry tools!

Grade 1, Poetry Publishing Checklist

In reading, we are preparing for book clubs! Students discussed and practiced WHAT they could talk about in their book clubs (story, problem/solution, characters, character change). They also practiced and noticed HOW they could talk about books (taking turns, everyone gets to speak, one voice at a time, we talk about the book only…).


Also, 101 was very excited today when Ms.Olga announced that 101 had won the

BSI 2016-2017 CHESS CLASS of the YEAR AWARD!!

Each child got a chess keychain, which I’m sure you’ll see soon! They are very proud of themselves and I’m very proud of their hard work, wonderful behavior and cooperation during chess time!

I hope everyone has a wonderful, relaxing weekend.