Found this interesting

I have been doing some correcting. As you know before Christmas we did a small book called Need and Wants. On the last page there was a cut and paste activity where the students were asked to sort things into two columns, need or want. What I found as I corrected was ..... Interesting. 19 of the 21 students did this.....


Times have certainly changed, a cell phone has become a necessity to the next generation! The cutest thing while I was correcting was a little girl who had written "to meet my God" in her wants bubble.

Hope you are all having a wonderful Christmas!!

Mrs. Hildebrand


Merry Christmas!

God Bless you this glorious day!

suddenly the angels were surrounded by a vast host of other angels praising God. Glory to God in the highest Heavens they sang, and peace in earth for all pleasing Him.
When the angels had returned to Heaven the shepherds said to each other, "Come on let's go to Bethlehem, lets see this wonderful thing that has happened which The Lord has told us about."

So they ran to the village and found their way to Mary and Joseph, and there was a baby lying in a manger.

Merry Christmas!


Happy Break!

I just spent an hour taking down all the gingerbread themed activities and posters in our room to make ready for January and our new theme. It looks all ready to go.

The kids were CRAZY today, so very, very, excited! I got so many wonderful gifts, and about 2 million hugs and 50 invitations to Christmas. I so appreciate all the students in my room, they are all so special. I even treated one little student to a special gift - smoked oysters (that was alllllllll he wated for christmas this year!). I thought that was adorable. Thank you all for the party food, the gift exchange gifts, and the love you pour into your kids.

We did a spelling test today, but since we started party round two at lunch today I have not marked them yet. If you want your childs mark you can email me erhildebrand@springs.ca and I will send you the mark once they are done.

I am feeling very blessed today and it has lead to some reflection. I believe it was His calling on our hearts that helps us choose what we want to do in the greater scheme of things. He hand-picked those of us who are parents and teachers to care for, love, teach, and protect all of His little angels here on Earth until they return to Him. How amazing to know that God has such faith in us that he trusts us with these little souls! Remember that the next time you think you don't have it all together yet - God thought I could do this and He beleives in me!


Mrs. Hildebrand


One day left!!!

This is the first post I am posting from the class IPad. I have to say that this typing is a little rough for me!

Today the class was a little crazy! I can tell that Christmas is upon us. Pi have to y a very large thank you for the wonderful gifts. I told the kids that I loved owls and angel wings and they have
Found a variety of ways to bless me with them, and glittery pens! Am so blessed to teach such awesome kids.

Today we did school wide carolling in the morning and followed it with a spelling test. hey did pretty good considering we have had little class time to practice and I a sure homes are bustling with activity! We had part one of our party in the afternoon, had snacks and hung out. We also watched The Story Fairy. You can look the show up on YouTube, it is produced by the parents of one of my students, and you can see her in the show. Great stories and a very cute dragon held the kids attention, check it out!

We continued our RACK giving, although we had to have another student hand them out for us. we gave candy canes to the patrols who helped the kids in and out of the car after school and who did pylons. They do such great work for us that it had to be rewarded! Thank you to our little elf and to the kids who came up with the idea, you are awesome.

Mrs. Hildebrand

note: gift exchange tomorrow and early dismissal at 2 pm.


Its been awhile!

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERAIn case you are wondering – the internet connection at my house is acting a bit sketchy so I thought I would do it from here today!

I have a few things to share since my last post!

I think that considering the holiday craziness they are doing awesome! They did a rockin’ chapel, and performed like superstars at the care home!  Way to go Grade 1’s! They did great work on their cards and were super friendly about handing them out in a way that was meaningful!  And a BIGGER thank you to all the Moms and Dads who helped out or showed up to support their little ones!  You have no idea how much it impacts their school days to know you support them!

A few projects we are working on right now:

Christmas centers : Three or four times a week we are doing centers where the kids get to rotate through four centers – and they LOVE it! I mentioned them before – stocking center for punctuation practice, Christmas tree three numeral adding, pine cone painting and biography, patterning and alphabetical order.  You will see this work coming home occasionally – praise them heavily because they work so hard!

Our prayer a day is going strong – we have prayed for parents, teachers, bus drivers, patience, honesty, and peace.  We have some great ones coming this week too!

RACKS!   I sent home a sheet outlining the idea of a RACK – a random act of Christmas kindness. This week we are doing a few things each day to show people we care about them and that God loves them!  Yesterday we handed out chocolates with RACK cards to people all over – church workers, flooring workers, construction workers, a delivery man, staff, and students.  We were super quiet and sneaky!  I think it is very important for the kids to understand that Christmas is for us to celebrate Jesus.  Jesus told us in the bible that if we love him we will FEED HIS SHEEP!  That means serving others in deed and time.  Pop by this week to see what else we are doing!

There is spelling this week – Christmas words!  We have practiced them in class, but here are the words so you can practice them at home –











Thank you for the gifts you have sent – you are all awesome and I thank you for sharing your little one with me every day :o)


Mrs. Hildebrand

Note: We made Birthday cards to Jesus to decorate the room – ask your kids about them they were very proud of their work!



Wednesday Night - Pre-chapel prep!

Today everyone was so quiet! I think after the excitement of the Christmas Concert they were worn out!  We did our spelling test, worked on printing and math, had a really fun Healthy Eating Relay, made cards for the seniors at the care home we are visiting on Friday, and practiced for chapel!

I am excited about chapel – I am so proud of how much work they are doing and how well they are picking it all up! It is a lot for even as adult to remember!

We are continuing our prayer a day chain – this week it has been parents, and self-control, and for healing in our bodies.  If you would like to pray with us tomorrow is going to be for Mrs. Fligg who is having some surgery this week, as well as for the construction workers who are all over our building working hard to make it beautiful in the midst of all the Christmas Craziness.

Have a great night!

Mrs. Hildebrand

Notes: Kids are to wear black pants and a white shirt tomorrow.  Friday they should have their green springs shirts on.  If you have not paid for your Tshirt yet please do so ASAP! Friday will still be our spelling test - it will be after lunch!


Come join us for our Christmas Chapel. Grade1A and KindergartenB are presenting at chapel on Thursday December 13th.

Join us at 9:55 or 10:55 - the more the merrier!


Christmas concert and chapel have ket me BUSY!!!  Sorry about being the lame blogger this past week, but we have pretty much done nothing but practice, practice, practice!  chapel in the a.m. and concert in the p.m. 

We are working on a few new things all the same - a Gingerbread printing practice book to brush up on our tidy factor, and a gingerbread math book working on addition up to 15.  They are doing amazing things!

I was remiss in posting the spelling words this week, so without further adieu:












It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

We are super busy in 1A!  Every day seems to get shorter, but not in a bad way.  There is just so much that we want to do and throw that in with what we have to do, and chapel practice and Christmas concert practice and life becomes a whirlwind of activity!

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERAToday we did our first spelling test, their tests were sent home.  Most kids need quite a bit of practice with these new words – they have blends and ending families that are a bit more complicated.  But I know they can do it! I am going to be making and sending home a blend and digraph chart that you can use to practice with your little ones.  I will also post it here in case you lose it :o)

We did our first round of Christmas centers today, and the kids were awesome.  We did Christmas tree math, stocking sentence practice, acorn painting and biographies, and Christmas patterns.  They will go through all four before the holidays, maybe more than once.

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERAWe learned more about the Ten Commandments and talked about real life examples of how they can be broken, sometimes without even realizing it!  We also talked about  the need to repent – not to just be apologetic but also to move away from sin and make our lives better by changing from the inside out – starting with one good choice.  It is easy to apologize, but sometimes hard to change.

Good night all!

Mrs. Hildebrand


December already!!

Dec 3 picsQuick blog post before this teacher helps her daughter finish building a plane for science! Today was a super busy day  (but aren’t they all?) .

Friday was a super day!  We did a bunch of things but I got the most feedback from the science experiment we did.  We are looking at cause and effect and using what learned about the scientific procedures like making a prediction, doing an experiment in a controlled environment, and checking your prediction against the factual outcomes to see if we were right or wrong and talk about why we were right or wrong.

We reviewed the story The Gingerbread Man and talked about how in the stories we have been reading the Gingerbread Man is always climbing on the fox/wolf head to get away from the water.  We came up with logical reasons why he would not want to get wet; we would fall apart, he would get soggy, his sprinkles would come off, he would sink etc.  We made a prediction about what we thought our cookie would do in water.  Then we tested our prediction, made some observations, and followed up our experiment with looking at if we were right or wrong.  Most of our cookies fell apart. Only three got soggy but remained intact. My class LOVES science!

During bible today I asked the kids if they have ever played a game without knowing all the rules.  They all had.  Last Wednesday we had Mrs. Wannamaker’s Grade 2 class in our room to play math games.  Kids were waiting for me to explain some of the rules and while they waited for me to circulate they tried playing by themselves.  This led to confusion, several people making rules and trying to change others rules for personal gain, and no one knew what to do or how to win.

We then switched gears and talked about all the different ways we can talk to our friends; email, letter mail, texts, face to face, phone call, even cup phone (this was legitimately suggested by a student).  When we talk to God there are many ways as well; praise and worship, prayer, talking to him in your head or out loud.

I told them that Moses went up to Mount Sinai and talked with God and God told him that if the Hebrew people were going to live successfully and in peace they needed some rules – 10 rules in fact.   Special rules called – commandments. The kids really understood why these rules were important.  I covered all 10 commandments and what they meant.

We also talked about the fact that even though the rules were made a LONG time ago they are still important to living a peaceful and obedient life.  We talked about some real life examples of these things in our lives.

Today we also talked about why Christmas is important – not the presents (although we agreed that we all like presents) but because of Jesus and how he came to set us free and give us a way to heaven.  Further, he came to show us how to live so we could be a light in the darkness.

We used prayer today to talk to God about some special things.  On my desk is a Christmas countdown calendar and each day we are going to pray for someone or something special.  Today we did three since we missed the 1st and 2nd.  We prayed for angel to be encamped around about us as we travel in cars, planes, or on skidoos etc.  We also prayed for the inner city and the people we know may not have the best Christmas and maybe are having trouble with homelessness or poverty and winter is extra hard for them, and we also prayed for Mrs. Dueck who is recovering from surgery today.  We also wrote special messages to the inner city as part of a school wide project.

We did our chapel practice before the end of the day and the kids are getting SO GOOD AT IT!  I am stoked to have you guys come see us perform.

Today was also our spelling lesson, and here are this week’s words:

-ust family: must   trust   just

-ash family: mash   splash    cash

-ank family: drank   blank   sank

Challenge word: where


Mrs. Hildebrand


Mid-afternoon posting!

I volunteer at church tonight so I thought I would do this now while I have a few minutes and my class is in gym.

Just a reminder to parents early in the day - we are not getting the normal amount of time to do word work with the Christmas rehearsals so make sure to practice with your little one at home today and tomorrow so they can do great on their Friday spelling test.

In case you forget the words are;











:o)  You parents rock.


Mrs. Hildebrand



Let the crazy begin!

Today was a CRAZY day at school!  Crazy, but great.  We started out day with a chapel practice in the Kindergarten room.  We ran through our chapel program and started working out the kinks.  It is going to be super cute.  It is December 13th – we will be making invitations to send home as reminders closer to the date.  Don’t miss it.

After our morning practice we learned that a special guest had been in our room the night before and hand left us a message:

Dear Grade 1A,

I had nine gummy bears on my tummy.  When I was running from the pig I dropped three.  Could you please help me figure out how many gummy bears I have left?

Thank you,

The Gingerbread Baby.

We worked the problem out on the board and decided as a group that he would have 6 gummy bear buttons left.  We wrote a reply back to the Gingerbread Baby and the kids are excited about the next “special message” they will get. This is an introduction to problem solving and how to recognize subtraction and addition problems.  This was also the focus of our journal writing this week – they were THAT excited about the message.  I love that they love to learn!

The afternoon was our first stage practice for the Christmas concert – they did amazing considering it consists of a LOT of sitting and in Grade One that sometimes is not so much fun.  My choreography kids blew my mind, all they need to work on was singing while dancing instead of looking scared :o)

We ended the day with a short game.  My class loves to play games – a lot.  We play a lot of educational games, or games that build teamwork or problem solving.  I have posted pictures of a few of their favourites; silent ball (passing a ball using no voices only eye contact and body language to communicate), Shuttles and Comets and Doubles hopping which focuses on adding numbers on dice quickly and correctly.  Color my Number where the kids roll dice and color in squares, the one with the most squares wins at the end.  7-up which is a card game that looks at number sequencing and more and less than. Ratouki is a class favourite, and it uses numbers in a bunch of different ways (two fingers, the number two, two dots, two tally marks, the word two for example) to increase number recognition and speed.

Reminders: Book orders due Dec. 3.  Spelling test tomorrow. Please make sure your little one has INDOOR and OUTDOOR shoes and comes with a hat, mitts, and scarf.


Mrs. Hildebrand

A NOTE: Some of the kids asked me to share this link with you, this was one of our favourite "jumping" praise and worship songs :o)  They are a great band (although they are no longer together) and you should check out some of their other music, the kids love it! We alsways talk about how we can make a difference if we ARE DIFFERENT!!

- - - - > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T4B9Rgebq7U Philmont - the Difference


Good evening ladies and gentlemen (moms and dads) and students :o)

I have to say that Monday is an interesting day in Grade 1, the kids come back full of stories and energy that I wish I could bottle!

Today FLEW by!  We started with calendar and then we had French along with Mr. Joyal’s Grade One Class.  Mrs. Janzen taught both together so they could watch the video together.  She has let me know how AWESOME our class is at French.  We practice our French whenever we can; calendar (we have counted to 53 in French), attendance, and now when going to the bathroom.

We also did our spelling lesson for the day and learned about three new word families!


-ock   family-ag   family-op   family
Challenge word : were


We are going to have fun with word work this week!

The kids are now fluent at the poems we have been learning with our gingerbread unit – I wrote three short poems for the kids to learn.  If you read this post ask them to recite this one with actions;

Baking up a batch of gingerbread,

Spicy, sweet, and brown.

Grandma’s old rolling pin

rolls it up and down.

Cookie cutters cut the dough,

into yummy ginger men!

I think I may have one or two…

Or five, or six, or TEN!

They do such a good job of that one!  We also did a lesson today on syllables and sorted students into classroom corners according to how many syllables (claps) they had in their names.  We are using this lesson and others to support learning we are doing about vowels and consonants as well as how words are formed.

Tomorrow is our first on stage practice for the Christmas concert and the kids are pretty excited!  I am too!  They know their songs so well – they are going to totally rock!

In math we are moving into some new ideas – doubles and groups within 10 and 20.  This is in addition to our usual looks at addition, subtraction, how numbers are made, sequencing etc.  They are really growing in their use of numbers!  I am so proud of them!


Mrs. Hildebrand


Thursday already!

Where does time go? This week is almost over already!

Today continued to read another gingerbread story – Gingerbread Friends by Jan Brett.  That makes number 4 of our gingerbread stories.  I have a whole slew of them to read over the next few weeks.  So far they have loved the Gingerbread Cowboy the best overall.  It has some funny characters in it as well.

We have also started practicing for our chapel presentation in a few weeks – December 13th I think. We have some AWESOME things lined up!  That is all I am going to say.

Today we covered some new ground – practicing the gingerbread poems I have written for the class to learn and read.  They LOVED them.  They love rhyming words and putting a rhyming poem to actions is one of their favourite things to do. We will be using the poems to explore our own poetry and to practice the elements of writing so we can prepare for making comics :o)

Today we also did some word work; cutting and pasting uppercase and lower case letters to spell this week’s spelling words. This is still pretty hard for some of the kids to do so I am trying to give them some extra practice. Cutting is also a good idea because it helps develop their motor skills.

Today was chapel and Mrs. Joyal’s and Mrs. Chomiak’s Grade One and Kindergarten classes presented their chapel.  They shared all about Christmas bells!


They did an amazing job and my class enjoyed the last video which featured a bunch of animals singing jingle bells.  It elicited a bunch of giggles from our section for sure!


This is the song we listened to today as past of bible.  The song is parachute and talks about how God saves us like a parachute.  We listened to it and talked about how God saved the Hewbrews from the egyptians because of Moses' faith. He parted the sea with a mighty wind and delivered them from destruction.  God can TOTALLY do this for us!  they loved this song (almost as much as Fresh IE!)

---- >   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0-1uJaYYBns



Mid week :o)


We had a LOT of fun today in Grade 1A.  We did calendar – and counted to fifty in French!  They are AWESOME at French.  We also learned about Moses and how God parted the red sea because Moses had faith in God when others doubted.

We did our spelling test in the morning – they did pretty good.  We are working hard at not only spelling the words right but writing them neatly and following instructions.  This includes the name, date and spelling.  It is a work in progress J but I am proud of them all.

We spent a class talking about art principles – value, texture, analogous and complementary colours, repetition, line, shape etc.  I showed them my art journal and got them excited about some of the things we are going to be doing. Sometimes they get frustrated with having to work all the time – they are after all in Grade One.  Sometimes they need a little encouragement so they can see the bigger picture.  We are going to be making gingerbread man comic in December and I wanted them to see how important it is for them to learn to write good sentences, to know about the beginning, middle, and end of a story, how to use good punctuation, how to use describing words, how to spell, how to be neat so people can not only read but enjoy our work.

Then we talked about punctuation – this is a good lesson for Grade One.  We talked about telling sentences, asking sentences, and excited sentences and how they all have different punctuation. We also talked about commas, apostrophes, quotation marks, and capitalizing.  We did a bunch of fun board examples and then they did some independent seat work which we corrected together.

We worked on visual sums (or using domino like boxes to show addition visually).  They did very good at this!  They even learned that adding 5 and 1 is just like adding 1 and 5 :o) They have also developed a love of finishing the day with math games – 7 up, dice games, or shoots and ladders.

We are going to be going a bit more in depth into shapes in the coming weeks – here is a sneak peek of what we are doing (on this page click preview to see a large image of some of our games and worksheets). I know some of you have communicated that you like to see what they are going to be doing in class – so there you go!


Reminders: Tomorrow we will be visiting book fair – so if you want your little one to get something this would be the time to send some money.  Tomorrow is also the last day of parent teacher conferences – it has been great talking with all the parents about their kids.  I have a great class! The new book order are due next Friday :o)


Two posts today, I am on fire!

We are working hard in 1A!  We have started several new things, and are hard at work solidifying others.

We made gingerbread men last Thursday, and they were terribly cute.  They had to choose a character that they could put into a Gingerbread man type book.  They had to decorate him and then choose an animal or person that their gingerbread being had run from.  We had a gingerbread ninja, a gingerbread princess, a gingerbread monster and so many other creative ideas.

We also talked about the different gingerbread stories we have read and compared two of them; what was different in each story and what was the same (Gingerbread Boy and Gingerbread Cowboy). We used a venn diagram to comare the two.  They made some great comparisons!

Monday we did our spelling lesson, and we also talked about making “ten” in different ways.  I had each of the students put a sticker on.  These stickers has things like 5 cents, two fingers up, three tally marks, the number four, the word five etc.  and they had to follow my instructions to do things like make groups of ten, make groups of fifteen, find someone with one more or less than your number, all the same numbers in a group etc.  They really liked it!

We also talked about  beginning, middle, and end of a story again.  We used the book the Gingerbread Girl to discuss the three parts of a story.  They filled out a worksheet that shared a summary sentence and asked them to illustrate their sentence.  For the most part I think they are really beginning to understand how to separate the parts of a story, and how to start summarizing ideas.

We did a lesson on oridinal numbers today too; First, Second, Third etc.  We talked about what they each meant; first (1), second (2).  I  then had 10 students put on stickers that said First through Tenth and line up at the front of the room  and had the kids on the carpet organize them into a line that was in the right order.  It was funny to watch because first and fifth are spelled so closely that they switched places a few times before I asked them to look at the spelling carefully .  We then did a colouring activity to see if they had grasped the idea – using the letters of Gingerbread and some directions like “Colour the third letter blule, Colour the seventh letter purple..” . We will do a few follow up lessons on this throughout the year.

Our word work today asked the kids to put their spelling words into alphabtical order.  We talked about what it meant, and did a bunch of examples together but they didn’t do so well on paper.  There were only a handful of groups that got the words right.  We will be doing this activity together on Thursday to make sure they understand what it means to putthings in alphabetical order. I know they can do it – we just have to keep chipping away at it.


Mrs. Hildebrand

Mid day!

I know it is odd to see a mid day post from 1A, but today I wanted to make sure that the spelling words got put up for you guys to practice with your little ones before they went to bed!

I will do a better update later of what has been going on yesterday and today- with pictures for y'all to see.....promise!  I didn't get home until quite late last night and just wanted to hit the hay! 

This weeks words are:

Ball   Tall    Call

Bat    Hat    Cat

Pill   Hill   Will


I just wanted to also give a great big thanks to Mrs. Wieler who helped out this morning, reading with some of the kids!  You are very appreciated!



Who is loving the cold weather?  Me, not so much.   But, it does give me a good reason to wear warm and fuzzy sweaters -  so we all win J.

Today we started with calendar, and followed with prayer and praise and worship.  We are listening to all kinds of Christian music in 1A, today was Blesses Be by Matt Redman, and Avalanche by Manafest.  My class LOVES Christian rappers!

We did some funny poem word work where the kids have to listen (and read along) to a funny poem, find the spelling words (and word families) and then draw a picture to show their understanding.  They did great at it!  We also completed a following instructions worksheet where they had to roll a dice to create a gingerbread man.  They were right into it.  They had to name their gingerbread man and there was some super creative names; Fred, Princess Cookiella, and Zombincookie.

We also did the first spelling test -  I had 9 kids get 10 out of 10.  They are getting so much stronger at spelling, and the kids who did not get them all right were putting sounds down and that is a big accomplishment!  Way to go grade 1!

We all had a bit of mid-morning excitement – a real fire drill!  Lucky for my class that I had duty and was late getting back so they were one of the only classes dressed still when we had to line up outside!Yay warm jackets!  It all turned out okay though and after about 10 minuteswe all went back inside and all was good.

I just got home not long ago from volunteering at church and picking my kids up from their volunteer meetings – but I am looking forward to reading some verses the class and I are going to be learning about.  You should check it out:

Israel’s Only Savior (Isaiah 43)

43 But now, this is what the Lord says—
he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
3 For I am the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;
I give Egypt for your ransom,
Cush[a] and Seba in your stead.
4 Since you are precious and honored in my sight,
and because I love you,
I will give people in exchange for you,
nations in exchange for your life.
5 Do not be afraid, for I am with you;
I will bring your children from the east
and gather you from the west.
6 I will say to the north, ‘Give them up!’
and to the south, ‘Do not hold them back.’
Bring my sons from afar
and my daughters from the ends of the earth—
7 everyone who is called by my name,
whom I created for my glory,
whom I formed and made.”

I love that portion of scripture – it reminds me just how much God loves us all and how although there are things that we go through, they will never overtake us if we allow him to carry us and we remain in Christ!

Reminders: Spelling test tomorrow.  No school Friday.  Please make sure your child has indoor and outdoor shoes to wear!


Erica Hildebrand



Tea Bags?

When we grow up we want to be tea bags!

If any of you had the pleasure of seeing Dr. Sam Chand during the Springs Conference you will know where this particular lesson finds it roots.

I put a water bottle full of hot water on the table at the front of the room.  I took out a tea bag and talked about what a tea bag was.  It smelled good, it was full of good things, and it spreads in the hot water and makes the water into tea.  I asked if the tea could ever be taken out of the water again and they all agreed it would never be water again. Tea changed its environment.

We also talked about our heart, and the power our heart has over our mouths and our actions and how God tells us to be careful what we see, what we hear, what we taste etc.  This is because it goes into our hearts and then comes out in how we live our lives.  We did some visual representations looking at our heart being full of good things (God) when we praise and worship, use kind words, read the word, forgive others, treat others with respect and honor, act responsibly, pray, talk to God and so on.  But on the other side if we listen to our friends talk bad about others, steal things, use unkind words like “I am not going to be your friend anymore”, be disobedient to our parents or other adults, do things we know are wrong, lie and so on it fills our heart too.  I used a different color to show how each enters into our hearts, and then covered one colour with another to show how the inside of our heart changes.

Our heart is like the tea inside our tea bag.  It can be fragrant and spread to others in a positive way that may change their lives forever, but it can also make it sour and leave others with a “bad taste” about us. We want to be sweet, strong, fragrant tea bags in the lives of the people around us and in the world around us.  Tea bags change their environment – and so do we!

We made tissue paper tea bags inside we tucked six hearts that show different things we need to have in our hearts in order to be tea bags – kindness, love, compassion, the word, prayer, etc.  Them we placed a tag with our names on them – after all each of us has unique gifts, abilities, and stories and so we each have our own unique “flavor” or fragrance.

2 Cor 2:14 Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.

Prov 23:7 For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.

Prov 4:23 Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life.


Today we also completed our word work to practice for the spelling test tomorrow - the kids got to pick scavenger hunt or rainbow words - two of their favourites.  We did our test on Jospeh - which they did amazing on. We also completed our second part on traditions - non-holiday traditions.  We had some great ideas - trips to the lake, movie night, harvesting the garden etc.

Reminders: Spelling test tomorrow.  Please make sure to keep up practicing your scripture verses at home :o).


Back to work!

I love Mondays. Why? The kids come back full of stories to share and energy that I wish I could bottle! This morning we finished Joseph’s story – how he forgave his brothers and how God used his bad circumstances to save his family in their time of need. We used some real life analogies to explain how something not so great can be turned into something awesome when you let God take over your life and follow him diligently and trust him always.
We did our next spelling lesson – week six. They are getting better all the time at doing the work independently. Today’s words for this week are:
straw gum path
saw drum math
law hum bath

The pretest will be Wednesday morning like usual. We will be doing word work every day this week again to reinforce their learning.
Today we introduced our new theme – Gingerbread. We did our first craftivity – to color by code a gingerbread man using commonly used words like and or are.
Today the kids had library – they got three books today – they are super lucky. They were great books that will be at the book fair during parent teacher. I think their favorite was Introducing Little Jack Horner. Ask them about it – they are good at retelling stories!
Last class we talked about traditions and make a web of things that our families consider traditions. We looked at how each family celebrates Christmas (from making a cake for Jesus to visiting south Africa!) and Easter (decorating eggs and visiting Grandma’s house for instance) to initiate the idea that traditions don’t just have to happen on holidays! We talked about visiting the lake the first warm day in summer, making harvest soup when the garden is ready to be harvested, buying first day of school clothes the week before school etc. Tomorrow we are going to draw and write about a tradition that our family feels is special. So maybe if you find some time tomorrow morning or if you see this before you tuck them in – share a few ideas!
Reminder: If you are interested in taking part we will be taking one day in December and making gingerbread cookies. This will call for several volunteers to go smoothly!

Just a note - I have uploaded several of our class lessons onto Teacher Pay Teacher if you want to hit preview you can get a peek at some of what they are doing!

Gingerbread Math Activities: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Gingerbread-Themed-Math-Activities-and-Worksheets

Gingerbread Themed Literacy Centers/Word Work : http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Gingerbread-themed-Literacy-CentersWord-Work-Station


Happy long weekend!

Happy Long Weekend!

Thursday and Friday in 1A were AWESOME!  Thursday we even had a special guest – a grade 9 student from SCA who joined us for a youth-at-work day.  Ms. Shirley was in the room with us helping out, reading with the kids, working on literacy with them, and just being fun! Thank you Ms. Shirley!

Yesterday we took the day to learn about shapes.  We talked about different kinds of shapes – what they looked like, what things were made up of those shapes all around us, and what makes the each unique.  We even learned a GRADE 5 word for squares, rectangles and other shapes with parallel sides – parallelograms!

We drew a shape family – Mr. Square, Mrs. Rectangle, Stan Star, Hermioney Heart, Baby Triangle, Donnie Diamond, Grandpa Oval and Grandma Circle.  They loved this part of the activity. We then took a bunch of shapes and created shape pictures (creatures or scenery).  There was some amazing artwork!

We also did some word work and spelling tests.  Today the word work was so far one of their favorites.  I used our spelling words to write a short story.  They had to read the story find the works and graph how many of each word they could find! They could barely make it through the instructions.  I had to ask politely to hold onto a lot of pencils so they would wait for me to explain what we were doing! I am thankful they are so keen to learn.

In bible we are wrapping up Joseph.  Monday will be the last of learning about him and we will be onto the next bible story!

Today was our Remembrance Day (Veterans Day) chapel.  It was a time where the kids got to reflect on freedom and peace and how to honor people who sacrifice their lives for us.  We watched a great musical montage with clips of the world wars and more recent wars in which Canadian soldiers served.  I think it was great at impressing upon us who are so far removed from the front lines that war is more than an idea.  Freedom is not free; it comes at a terrible but amazing price.  We should honor and pray for those who lay their lives down for us each day in the military (not just the soldiers on the front lines either – but all those soldiers and veterans who protect our freedom in a myriad of ways!)

God Bless!!

Mrs. Hildebrand


And we need more paper towels…

Today we started by doing calendar – they are getting great at skip counting by 2, 5 and ten. They expecially love to do it if we do it with a pirate voice – argh.
In bible we talked some more about Joseph and how even though bad things happened to him he NEVER complained, he just trusted God to see him through to the other side. His brothers plotted to kill him, sold him into slavery, he was lied about by Potiphar’s wife and ended up in jail and then after he interprets the dream of the butler and the baker the butler forgets to speak to the pharoah about him so he remains in jail for years. Sounds pretty rough to me! So today we talked about a trusting heart being a heart that does not complain!
Today we also did word work – we all did rainbow words. We roll a dice and each number is correlated with a colour on the board. They have to write out each word after rolling to see what colour it should be. They like writing with markers :o).
We also did journaling – we wrote a journal message sharing how thankful we all are to the brave men and women who serve our country in the war. We continues to talk about the different people who all serve our country in the military (from jet refuelers, pwople who fly supplies over seas, geographers who make military maps, nurses, cooks, teachers…and so on!). Then we drew a picture to illustrate something we are thankful for or something that symbolizes peace.
We also did some dice math – the kids each roll a dice and record their numbers on a sheet then they add them together. We also are working on great and less than using the dice. We learned about how Pac-Man always eats the GREATER number (the one who is bigger or worth more). They did really good at this!
As you may have heard from your little one – we had some issues with children being sick. A few people ended the day by losing their lunch . A bad flu (but quick) has been rampaging through 1A so I pray an extra blessing upon you and your family for health, healing, and a good nights sleep. God bless!
Mrs. Hildebrand


Happy Veteran's Week

Is anyone enjoying the weather outside?  It can’t decide if it wants to rain or snow.  As long as it melts – I am happy!

This week is veteran’s week so we are learning lots about the men and women who have served our country. We talked about soldiers who serve in wars all over the world, Canada’s unique role as peace keepers, and that a veteran is a soldier who has served in a war and returned home. We even talked about their special license plates – with the V and the poppy on them and how whenever you see a license plate like that you should pray for that person and thank God for their selflessness.

We used describing words – adjectives to describe veterans – they come up with some great words; brave, servant, thankful, strong, and generous. We then talked about ways that we could show our gratitude to people who have protected us by serving in the war; visit a cenotaph, observe a minute of silence, pray for soldiers, thank a veteran, attend a service, or wear a poppy.

As a class we created three messages of thankfulness and each wrote a postcard to a veteran, and then I will mail them to Deer Lodge tomorrow.  This was done through the poppies of peace project which is great.  I have worked in a care home where man and women have received postcards or small gifts on Remembrance Day and it has touched their hearts. For many people it is a sad day – and this can turn it around.

We also wrote a special message to our special student from last week.  They are getting much better at formatting a letter – even a short one.

We also had reading buddies last class, and a spelling lesson.  This week’s spelling words are:


Reminders: Spelling test Wednesday.  Report cards are out next week.


Friday and an end of a good thing :o)


Friday was officially the last day that we did anything pumpkin related.  Our new theme starts on Monday.  We will however continue on with learning about patterns, skip counting, number sense, one more and less, beginning and end sounds, writing sentences, word families and letter blends  and so on like we have been doing all along.  I will very much be teaching concepts all year as opposed to in concentrated units. We will have a series of mini lessons that build on what we already know – kids and adult both learn better when they can connect it with something they are already familiar with.

Friday we created some very colorgul posters that show what we know about what people need to live and about what different pets need to live - we talked about how many of those thigns are the same!  The grade ones are very insightful : o )

Guided reading groups will be starting very soon – the class is excited about this!  Friday was also our very first successfully carried out reading buddies with Mrs. Taylor’s grade 6 class.  They were such awesome mentors for my class – we are super lucky to have been able to partner with them. The grade 6’s read to us this week, next week the grade ones will be reading to them!

I am going to take a few minutes to respond to a parent question I got Friday. What are some websites that would be beneficial to my child if they really want to be on the computer?

  • http://starfall.com  – This is one of my kid’s favorites. Each letter can be interacted with; sounds, words, matching upper case and lower case.  It is easy for kids to navigate and with a little instruction they will be independently able to use this site. There is also e-reader books, a great alphabet song to review letter sounds and so on.

  • http://www.raz-kids.com/main/Login – Raz Kids is a great place for online interactive reading.  The kids love these books.

  • http://funbrain.com – there is a lot on this site – creative thinking games, word games, math games – even mad libs.

  • http://pbskids.org  -  word games, science games, math games and other fun games to help your child become more computer literate and think critically.

  • http://www.raz-kids.com/main/Login - lots of great games on this site too.  Even though they may seem a little “young” sometimes playing something you can be successful at will build confidence, and reviewing is always a great idea!

  •  http://www.scholastic.com/parents/play/ - again lots of phonics and reading awareness games to play.


If you know of some great website feel free to share them below or email them to me and I can add them to the next post :o)

If you ever have any questions feel free to ask – that is what I am here for!



Erica Hildebrand


Busy busy!

The last two days have been hectic but fulfilling in 1A.  Yesterday we did calendar, the last practice of the October verse and praise and worship.  We were listening to different types of music and talking about how different types of music can glorify God.  We listened to From the Inside out by Hillsong, and then we listened to God of this city by Fresh IE featuring Blue Tree.  The kids loved it. (You can see it here  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R15-jjx6fjI ). We used this song as a jumping off point to pray for the people of our city, the people who run our city, for people visiting our city, and to be able to impact the people in this city with our lives.  It was awesome.

This was also a jumping board for talking about Joseph and the story of how he came to impact a nation. We read about how Joseph was Jacob’s favourite son and how his coat of many colors made the other brothers mad so they plotted to kill him but instead sold him into slavery.   This was a great starting point for talking about jealousy and how God wants us to be happy when the people around us are blessed. We are continuing this story in bible over the next few days.

We have played musical chairs, sight word memory, had our spelling pretest, and watched a Bill Nye the science guy video on Buoyancy.  The video was tied into our investigations into sinking and floating. Yesterday we also had a special School spirit Snack – blue juice and pumpkin shaped cookies to wrap up our pumpkin unit.

We are going to be diving more deeply into the needs of humans and animals and how they are the different and the same.  This will link back to our first weeks of school and the things that God created in the garden for Adam and Eve.

We are also starting a new thematic unit – gingerbread.  Our Math and ELA activities will be mostly themed to this – but will still reach curricular outcomes.  A little bit of science and social will be thrown in too!

Reminders: Book orders are due tomorrow, October scripture verses are no longer being said, spelling test tomorrow, please send your parent-teacher forms back A.S.A.P., and if any parents are interested in volunteering in class we are going to be starting reading groups very soon and would love some help implementing this! Report cards are coming up too!

God Bless!

Mrs. Hildebrand


Math masters!

Math Masters!

My class is becoming a group of math masters.  Today we wrapped up our pattern review (although they called it just a pattern book – the word review scares them ).  They did really well.  We also started working on some other final reviews so that I can determine exactly where they are for reporting.  I want it to be as accurate as possible. We are working on reviewing number sequencing, one more, one less, being able to express numbers in words, pictures and numerals, as well as skip counting (we are working on 2, 5, and 10 daily).

We did word work today – and played word family bingo.  They each chose nine word family words to put into their bingo cards and then I got to be the caller.  This is a great way to help them with word recognition and letter recognition.  Without being able to see the word they must use other skills to find them (sounding out beginning and end letters, recognizing what letters look like, and finding word families inside of their words.)  We also worked on reviewing beginning and ending sounds using animals.  You can see the worksheets to the right.  They enjoyed this.  We did a mini-lesson on the board and they nailed some very hard sounds – blends like Ch for instance.

In bible we are wrapping up Jacob and Esau.  We learned about Jacob’s dream,how he wrestled with a man until his hip was disjointed and he received a special blessing and his name was changed to Israel, how him and his brother reconciled, and how God told him that he would be with him no matter what!

Reminders: Tomorrow is our pre-test in spelling.  We will be doing this first thing in the morning so that we can party in the afternoon.  We have some fun things planned!


Erica Hildebrand


I love my job :o)

Today we had a great day – of course. We started the day off with bible – it’s the best way to start a Monday.  We are wrapping up Jacob and Esau.  Today we learned about how Jacob tricked his father Isaac into giving him his blessing, after he had already gotten the birthright from Esau earlier.  We talked about how Jacob lied to his father three times.  If we lie we always have to keep lying to cover up our first lie.  What’s more is that Esau then pledged to kill his brother once his father died.  The consequences of lying are never good.  We used the example of telling your Mother you ate all of your broccoli.  If she happens to see some in the garbage as ask you again if you ate all your broccoli you will have to lie to her once more and would probably say something like “it was my sisters”.  If she asked your sister and she denied it was hers Mom would likely ask you once again and then you would have to lie a third time and she would probably know that you were lying and you would get in trouble.

We did our spelling lesson today – so word work will follow this week.  Spelling words this week;

-ed family-id family-and family


Today we completed our first pattern assessment – I got the kids to use a “leaf book” to create AB, AAB, ABB and ABC patterns to see if they understand the patterns enough to create their own. They should be done tomorrow, and then we will move onto skip counting and a number sense review so I can add this to their report cards, yes it is almost that time again!

We are also starting guided reading in November so we are doing another round of reading testing so that I can make groups that are compatible and can support each other. I am so proud of the grade ones, they are doing awesome. This will also add to what I can input into to their report cards and if the strategies we are using are working.

If you are ever interested in seeing some of the curricular work we do in the classroom you can check out my TPT (teacher’s pay teachers) store, it is new and not very full but it is up - http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Mrshildebrand .  I make a lot of our worksheet s and work books myself – there are free previews of things that I upload to my store. This is not a plug at all, a parent today asked me about where I get my worksheets or where they could buy things to use at homeJ. Some of the things we do will be uploaded and available for free download if you ever want to support your child’s learning at home. There is also a bunch of other really great material posted by other teachers there!

Reminder: Wednesday is School Spirit Day – so make sure you dress your little one up school colors (navy blue, silver, grey).  Book orders are due Friday.  Wednesday is the last day that the kids can say October’s verse to me.


Mrs. Hildebrand


I have, Who has??

Thursday was a very busy day – but busy is good :o).  We started with calendar and moved on to work on our new patterns – ABC.  They nailed this one very quickly; they are getting good at patterns. We looked at the letter pattern, colour pattern, shape pattern, and then movement (clap, slap, snap etc.).  We also sang We Will We Will Bless You while doing the left clap, right clap, leg slap. They enjoyed that. We will be looking at naturally occurring patterns more in depth next week – after all God created patterns; seasons, daily changes, patterns on animals etc.

We then played a game called I have, Who has?  One student with the specially marked card reads their card out first – “I have sit, who has hit?”  The student with “hit” replies by reading their card, “I have hit who has fit?” and so on until all 25 cards are done.

We played hang man with the spelling words today as a fun way to review them.  I targeted the words most of them were getting wrong. At the end of the day I printed off the practice homework and asked which students wanted extra practice before the test tomorrow– 17 took it home to work on.  That is awesome!

Today was also chapel – Mrs. Fournier was presenting and talked to the kids about using a filter for their words and actions – after all that is something God wants us to do.  We are to make our words and thoughts acceptable before Him!  When we got back to the classroom one student piped up and commented that now he has TWO filters; the coffee filter the principal had given them as a visual reminder of filtering our words/actions, and his heart!  That was so precious and led to an awesome conversation about the hearts role in our actions. My class has such a willingness to learn and I totally appreciate that!

In the afternoon we worked on writing a letter to one of our special students thanking her for sharing her show and tell with us and telling us all about how special she is! This takes a while since we try to do our very best work – but they value being able to write the student of the week a kind letter.

REMINDERS: Parent teacher interview appointment sheets went home, book orders are not due until next Friday, there is a Spelling test tomorrow, and chocolate money is PAST DUE.  Next week is Spirit day – and all students are ENCOURAGED to wear silver, blue, and white – the school colours and celebrate attending such as awesome school! What a blessing!


Visit to pumpkin town!

Today we started out with calendar as usual!  The kids are getting really good at counting by 2s, 5s, and 10s.  We have even started throwing in counting by 3s to change things up a bit.  We count forward in French and backwards in English.  They love it.  Today we even counted with our eyes closed! Then we say our scripture verse as a group.

In bible we are learning about Jacob and Esau and how Esau sold his birthright to Esau for a bowl of stew.  We talked about the promises that God made to Abraham (to bless his family and make him the father of many nations, and to give him the blessing of a child even though him and his wife were quite old).  Isaac was born unto Abraham and Sarah and was later married to Rebekah.  Rebekah became pregnant with twins and God told Rebekah and Isaac that the older brother would serve the younger brother (we talked about how odd this was a loooooong time ago!).  Tomorrow we are going to continue on with this lesson.

We worked on word work again, this time we did a cut and paste activity that got them to match beginning sounds with word families (-en, -it and long e) to make spelling words.  They always enjoy using scissors and glue.

We also studied a new kind of pattern today – ABB.  We reviewed AB, AAB and then moved onto ABB so we could see the similarities (two elements) and the differences (how often they occur). We always start with the letters ABBABBABBABB, move onto color ABBABBABBABBABB, then to shape 〇☐☐〇☐☐〇☐☐, then include movement slap-jump-jump-slap-jump-jump-slap-jump-jump, and then in song half note, quarter note, quarter note etc.  I give them a strip of paper and get them to create their own pattern to make sure they understand the concept at the end.  They have nailed this for the most part.  They get very excited when they see the pattern set up on the board – which I am glad for!

Today was our vice-principals birthday – so we made her a big card and delivered it to the office.  The kids all signed their name – they loved hiding the secret and working “undercover” so that she wouldn’t see the card or find out what they were doing.

We read a great book called Pumpkin Town.  In this book four brothers and a father are pumpkin farmers and by accident at harvest time they end up spreading seeds into a village at the bottom of the hill.  The pumpkins take over the town and start destroying things, so the brothers sneak into town in the middle of the night and harvest the pumpkins and clean up all the vines.  In return for their work they are given watermelons.  Long story short – the seeds from the watermelon are scattered into the town at the bottom of the hill and it eludes that the same thing will happen again. We used this story to talk about the beginning (the who, what, where and when of the story), the middle (the action of the story), and the end (how things are wrapped up) of the story.  We divided a paper into three sections and the kids all drew their understanding of the begging, middle, and end of the story we had read.  They worked on this very well.

We finished the day with a spelling test – which went pretty well.  Said appeared to be a hard word for them to spell – but they did a good job of sounding it out and most of them guessed s-e-d.  We will have the final test Friday afternoon, and we will work  in class on the words a few more times yet.

REMINDER: Chocolate sales money is PAST DUE and we have been reminded to tell you it should be in asap.  Pictures are due tomorrow.  I am also wanting to mention that I will be accepting book orders until next Friday as per a few parents request :o).


Mrs. Hildebrand


What a cold rainy day!

What a cold day!
Don’t get me wrong! I welcome the rain as opposed to the snow because I know that once the snow is here it is likely to stick around for a looooooong time.
Today we had a bible test – all about Abraham and Isaac. The class did great. When we had our wrap up talk they did an awesome job of telling me about how Abraham trusted God and how God blessed him.
Today we also did some word work – today we stuck with the pumpkin theme we have going and did a pumpkin patch word sort. The students got into partners and sorted –en, -it, and long e pumpkins into the right pumpkin patches. Once the words were sorted they recorded them onto a sheet which I marked to see if they understood how the words were categorized. They had a lot of fun.
We have also been learning about patterns - yesterday it was AB patterns and today was AAB patterns. We learn what each type of pattern means, and then we replicate it with colours, shapes, movements and numbers. They catch on really quick – and they really love the movement pieces. Ask them to show you each pattern – they were really excited to do them in class. Tomorrow we are learning about ABB patterns.
Tomorrow is the spelling pretest – and here are the words (they were sent home last week, we didn’t have a test last week  )
Anyone interested in coming into the classroom is more than welcome to come and do small group or one on one reading with the students – it is a great way to help them increase their vocabulary and to get the more quiet students reading!
Also if there are any parents interested in sending in a traditional snack from their family’s culture/nationality we are going to be talking about traditions and heritage over the next week or so!

sit hen me
hit ten he
pit pen she

Mrs. Hildebrand


PS.  If you are interested in taking a first hand look at the word work here is the original document that I made to use in the classroom. Enjoy.

The Pumpkin Patch Word Sort



Happy Conference Week!

Thursday and Friday in 1A brought with it a series of more pumpkin related activities focusing on literacy, number sense, and scientific thinking.

We started a pumpkin booklet Thursday.  Each of the students got to choose a small heirloom pumpkin to keep.  We used the pumpkins to aid in our scientific investigations.  We drew and coloured a picture of our pumpkins, talking about how mixing colour adds interest and makes things look more real (depth).  We used “juicy” words to describe our little pumpkins – this was to relate our new learning to previous lessons and to see if they could use some of their own adjectives to describe their pumpkins.  They did awesome.

We also talked about what a prediction is – a guess that we make once we have some facts to help us make a good one (informed thinking.) So we looked at rulers – talked about how big some common things might be and then we predicted how wide our pumpkins were before measuring them for real and talking about if our guesses were too big (greater), too small(less than), or just right (equal). We also used math blocks to predict how tall our pumpkins would be and then measured them and again discussed how close our predictions had come.

The student’s favourite part of our pumpkin investigation was sink/float.  We all took part in holding objects and talking about their weight (mass, heavy or light) and their size (big or small).  We predicted if each of the items would sink or float and talked about why we may be right or wrong once we tested out predictions.  We even talked about why boats float if they are so big.  Then each of the students predicted if their pumpkin would sink or float.  Most of them felt how heavy the pumpkin was and predicted it would sink.  This led us to a conversation about how a pumpkin is hollow and the air that hides in the hollow places makes the pumpkin float.   The kids were very engaged.

In social studies we talked about how the Tower of Babel led to people being spread all over the world and talking different languages.  We talked about how in our class of 22 students and teacher we can trace roots to more than 20 different countries!  We listened on Google Translate to how most of those cultures/countries all say the word God earlier so the kids pulled this into conversations.  We each chose a country that our families have hailed from and drew the map.  We placed them up on the board.  On the bulletin board is also a map with pins marking each of the countries mentioned in the notes I sent home and you returned.  I used red thread to mark a line from each country to Winnipeg and we talked about how even though we all come from so many different places, eat different food, have different traditions, and may talk different languages  and we still make up a community in our classroom and a community of believers in Christ.

We ended today with free center time – they had a great week and deserved the choice time since the community clean-up was cancelled.  We had three centers open – wooden blocks, straw building, and stencils.  They had a blast.


Mrs. Hildebrand


Monday Monday….


Today seemed like it flew by! In a good way….

Bible was awesome; we talked about trusting God and used a bag of goldfish crackers and a bag of sand to talk about how much God knows that we don’t – like how many grains of sand are on a beach. This related to the statement God made to Abraham after he went to sacrifice Isaac.

Genesis 32:12 “But you have said, ‘I will surely make you prosper and will make your descendants like the sand of the sea, which cannot be counted.’”

Psalm 139: 17-18 “How precious to me are your thoughts, God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand—
when I awake, I am still with you.”

Then a volunteer student and I illustrated a trust fall, and how a trust fall is just like trusting God.  We need to understand that He will always catch us, and often he asks us to do things that scare us – but he knows what we need more than we do so we must trust in Him!

We worshipped to Our God is an Awesome God and prayed for each other and our families.

Today we also took time to write bucket fillers to our classmates, finish up some old work in math and science, have library and practice our October verse.

Last class of the day we had some Grade 4 visitors, and they helped the grade 1's with their spelling and then we played Where the Wind blows.  It was a blast.

Note:  Book order was sent early last week so they should be in relatively soon. :o)

Blessings always,

Mrs. Hildebrand


A Great End to the week!

Friday was a great day in 1a.  I try to usually come up with a new activity we can do – but this time I fell back on some of the ones the kids love the best.

We started the day talking about trusting in God (Psalm 31:14).  We looked some more at the life of Abraham and the promises that God made him; even though him and his wife Sarah were very old they would conceive a child, and that a mighty nation would be born from his line.  We had already looked at the part of Abraham’s life where he and his wife and Lot had left their homes because God promised them a new one.  The kids had some great feedback about how hard it would be to leave their homes, their things, the people around them, and only be able to take what they could carry – even if God promised them something amazing.

Well, once this promise was fulfilled, his son Isaac had grown up and God asked him to do something very hard – sacrifice his son.  So we talked about walking with the servants and then carrying the wood to create a fire with the son whom God has asked you to sacrifice.  We left off here – where Isaac asks his father where the lamb for sacrificing was.

This lead to a discussion about trusting God even when he asks us to do very hard things – like say something kind to a friend who hurt your feelings or giving the two dollars you were going to spend on candy into the offering bucket. We also talked about how God would never ask us to do anything that he would not be willing to do himself!  He may have asked Abraham to sacrifice Isaac – but he himself would later send his son to die on a cross for us!  God was not a mean, uncaring God – but a loving God who often knows more about where we need to go and what we need to do than we do.  Our spirit will guide us if we listen!

After that we had praise time – which has hands down become the kids favourite time of day.  We jumped to Take it All and worshiped quietly on the rug to Our God by Hillsong.

We did our spelling test – which went better than last week.  I think the first test anxiety passed for most of the kids. If anyone would like to have some extra spelling work sent home – just let me know.  I prepare it anyways, some of the kids ask for some extra practice Thursday night. I think it is awesome that they are investing in their own learning.

We also read a new piggy and elephant book – Elephants Cannot Dance. We play acted the book and the kids pretended to be Gerald and get all the moves wrong.

We also started some new math books – our Big Tall Math Book.  It is adding and subtracting to sums under ten.  A lot of the kids still use their math bracelets to assist their learning – but that is awesome!  It helps them double check their answers and feel more confident about their math ability. I am so proud of how hard they are working.

I have found the funniest thing to get the kids motivated to clean up, line up, or get on task.  It is the online bomb timer - once they see it they rush to wrap up before they hear the KABOOM that tells them time is up.  Just a hint for any parents who are looking for ways to get the kids to tidy up, or want to give them a five minute warning - they love the bomb timer!


Mrs. Hildebrand


Squirrels, bears, and birds...OH MY!

Chapel today was presented by the principal of SCA, Mrs. Darcy Bayne.  She did an awesome job of illustrating through interaction how we can fix our attention on God (his word his way of doing things) so that we may be changed from the inside out. Ask the kids about it – they would probably love to tell you all about it!

In science we are studying the seasons.  We have already investigated how the seasons affect us (our jobs, our clothes, our activities, our way of life), how seasons affect our environment (looking at the signs of turning seasons for some hint), that God created seasons for a special purpose, and today we moved on to study how seasons affect animals.  We talked about squirrels, bears, and birds as examples that the kids were familiar with.

Our science lesson introduced the foundation of our art lesson.  We used the ideas of texture to start our art lesson.  Instead of using scissors the kids had to tear the shapes they wanted for their birds; body, head, beak, and legs.  We added some feathers for wings and then coloured the back ground with markers. Unfortunately I did not get any pictures of this because for a portion of this activity I was in a meeting and someone else was helping the kids out.  I am marking them tomorrow, so you will get to see then soon however.

We also did some more word work to help the kids get a handle on Friday’s spelling test words.

Today was also the first choreography practice for the grade one choreography team for the Christmas concert.  I had so many kids interested in being part of the team that I had to draw names out of a box!  Mrs. Joyal had to do the same! We practiced the first part over lunch and the kids did amazing. This is a stretch for me, God gave me many gifts but I have never considered dancing to be one of them!  However, I am enjoying it immensely.

Reminder: Spelling test tomorrow.

Note: Some of you have approached me about different ways of helping your kids “get” their spelling words.  There are several strategies that may work:

  • have them use the words in sentences,

  • play hang man with them using the current spelling words,

  • review the letter sounds with them by singing the alphabet song using the sounds of the letters instead of the name or have them sing the starfall.com ABC song with you ( this web site is also a great way to support letter familiarity, http://www.starfall.com/n/level-k/index/play.htm?f ),

  • have them write the words out several times and then read them to you,

  • find some books that use the words in them so the kids are exposed to the words in a real life way,

  • give them practice spelling tests at home.

Often kids who confuse letters may just need a few reminders; for example,

“Cot, how do you spell cot?”


“Hmm, what sound does a D make?  Can you think of a word that starts with D? Is that the right sound, now listen again…C-O-T.”

Although strategies help – repetition is a big factor for many students just learning to read and spell. I encourage them all the time to try and try again. We also pray that their minds will be sponges and soak up the words so that when they need them they can be brought to their remembrance.  We also pray for peace and confidence heading into spelling tests.


Mrs. Hildebrand


Another awesome day in Grade 1!

The middle of the week already – where does time go?

We have changed a few things in the classroom that really seem to be working for the students!  In the morning when they come in they drop their bins into their desks and then they can grab a book and read on the carpet until O Canada comes on.  We have started doing calendar, then bible, prayer praise and worship first thing in the morning every day.  It is going very well and the kids seem to like the change!

Today we had our second bible test, on Noah and the Ark as well as the Tower of Babel.  They did awesome!

After gym and recess we did some word work with this week’s spelling words. There were three stations;

Rainbow Words: the kids roll a colour dice to determine the colour of the next letter in each of their spelling words.  They also get to write in marker – they love it.

Shake-a-word: the 10 spelling words are put into a jar along with a bunch of other objects; pom poms, sequins, mini leaves and clothes pins, marbles, beads, etc.  They have to shake the jar until they find and record each of this week’s spelling words.

Tic Tac Toe: just like the real game but with coloured words.  The kids have to draw spelling words from a coloured envelope (red or blue) and write those words in their colour on the Tic Tac Toe board.  They need to get three correctly spelled words in their colour in a row to win.

They really liked these stations!  They worked so well at them that I am going to add all three to our permanent collection.

We also have our first special student of the week show and tell.  After his presentation (part of which he used to read a story to the class and knocked my socks off!!) we all wrote him a letter thanking him for sharing with us and telling him how awesome we think he is.  He will get to take this book home on Friday!


There are some students who are not quite done some of our September work so it will be coming home with them Friday if they do not finish it by then.  Just wanted to give you all a heads up!



Pumpkin ho!

I hope you all had a great thanksgiving weekend!  I heard from the kids that they all had a great time.

Today is 1a we took a few minutes to have a circle meeting and thank God for the things that were important to us.  We then took 10 or so minutes and had some praise and worship time – the kids love praise and worship time.  We worshipped to Chris Tomlin again as well as One Way by Hillsong.  This is one of the classrooms favorite times!

We started and finished a pumpkin booklet today; we talked about using our 5 senses to look at pumpkins – what it smells, feels, tastes, looks, and sounds like.  We tasted the pumpkin seeds from our pumpkin, I had taken them home cleaned them and baked them. All in all they had some great observations.  We also did some graphing and graphed who had and had not gone pumpkin picking.  We used this information to talk about which side of the chart had more, what more looks like, and that more also means greater.

I used Pac-man to talk about great and less than and it something that really works with the kids.  Pac man < or > likes to eat the greater number (the number that symbolizes more).  They did awesome work looking at more or less in numbers under 40.

In social studies we are starting to hone in on identity as part of belonging and how we can “belong” in a myriad of different groups at the same time.  Their homework today was to empty their take home bags and get their parents to tell them where their families came from (originally) and bring a family picture in.  I want to map all the different cultures/nationalities that are present in our room – I think that it will be a great conversation starter for my grade ones!

They also brought home their spelling today – tomorrow will be their pre-test since there was no school Monday this means only one practice night.  However, tomorrow morning we are going to be done word work to go through the words and the test in the afternoon.

Week Two Spelling Words










Challenge word: made

Reminder: Book orders due tomorrow.


Pumpkin Cookies!

Here is the recipe for the yummy cookies we used in blind taste testing!

Pumpkin Cookies

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 can of pumpkin pie filling
2 cups confectioners' sugar
3 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and salt; set aside.
2.In a medium bowl, cream together the 1/2 cup of  butter and sugar. Add pumpkin, egg, and 1 teaspoon vanilla to butter mixture, and beat until creamy. Mix in dry ingredients. Drop on cookie sheet by tablespoonfuls; flatten slightly.
3.Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven. Cool cookies, then drizzle glaze with fork.


Happy Pumpkin Day

Today was officially Pumpkin Day in 1A – and we had a great time. We started our day by reading the Pumpkin Book.  This book talked about how a pumpkin grows and how the first settlers to North America learned to plant pumpkins from the women of local tribes and how pumpkins may have been eaten by many people on Thanksgiving over time. We talked about the different ways we liked to eat pumpkin – pie won out by far!

We then talked about what Thanksgiving is – about how people used to celebrate Thanksgiving to celebrate being thankful for the plentiful harvest of summer and the good food throughout the winter.  We made a word web of things we were thankful for – they had some great answers!  My family, my friends, God, good food, a warm home.

In the morning we made these really cute pumpkin “I am thankful” books. The kids did awesome at this! They used precut pieces to make pumpkins, then we pencil curled some yellow vines and a brown stem.  Them we added “bumps” with fall colors.  We stapled them together and voila – books!

We had our pictures taken – during first recess so we didn’t have to go outside! Then we had an awesome chapel – Mrs. Anderson presented to the kids about self-control and doing things that we may not feel like doing – just because they are the right things to do. My Grade ones were so amazing – I was very proud of them.

In the afternoon we opened up a pumpkin and used our senses to investigate it.  The kids were very funny – watching them touch the outside, the “meat” and then the strings and seeds was very entertaining. Pretty much everyone was willing to get a little messy.

We then each took a handful of goop and cleaned out the seeds and counted them.  I had the kids put them in groups so they were easy to count (rows of four or five for example) and they all did awesome!  I have to add up how many seeds we have and the closest guess wins a small prize.

We have a bunch of other great pumpkin related activities coming up over the next week or so.  I am super stoked.

REMINDERS: I am away tomorrow at an in-service so there will be a sub in the classroom.  There will still be a spelling test tomorrow – so make sure to practice your words! Scripture verses should be said by Monday at lunch – that is the last day I am willing to let the kids say their September verse so that they have enough time to practice for October.


Tuesday – and introducing the kids to word work!

Our day started off with talking more about Noah and the ark.  I gave the kids a simple origami dove (essentially a large square with lines in it) –  directed them to cut out the large square and then told them what it was supposed to be and how big it would be.  I didn’t direct them anymore and watched them struggle for two full minutes to try and do as I asked.  This lesson was to show us how hard it must have been for Noah to build an ark when he didn’t even know what it looked like! Then, I told them to have faith in me and I would tell them each step as we went through it together.  This was, of course, must more successful.  We then talked about how Noah having faith in God and knowing that God would never mislead him was important to the ark being built correctly.  We also talked about how if we listen to God’s still, quiet voice He will direct our path!

In the afternoon we started our word work; we had four “stations” today.  They use this week’s spelling words (posted in the last blog entry) and give them several different ways to practice them.  Today we did Broken Words, Crossword, Stamp Words, and Code Words.

  • Broken Words; I tell the kids I dropped our spelling words and they must “put them back together”, recording the words they find.  The words are cut into two pieces – the beginning sound and the word family (p and in for example). And they match up the two pieces using the spelling words as a “guide”.

  • Cross Word; just like it sounds – they must find each of the spelling words in a simple crossword and record them in the word bank.

  • Stamp Words; they use large stamps to stamp out each of their spelling words.

  • Code words: they use a “code” I provide them to turn their spelling words into codes that a partner must decode.

They did awesome considering this is the first time we have done these stations.  Each week I will be introducing four stations to help them master their spelling words.


Mrs. Hildebrand