Mrs. Serena's ABC's of 1st Grade


    A If your child is absent, a note stating the reason for the absence must be brought to school to avoid an unexcused absence.

    Our class will have Art on days A and D.

    Your child will bring home an agenda daily. Please read and sign the agenda daily as it will detail homework information and other pertinent information.

    B Bee Books help keep us organized. This folder will house homework, take home papers, and other items that assist with communication between home and school.

    If you would like to send a healthy birthday treat with your child on or near his/her birthday, please feel free to do so (due to allergies, wrapped treats and/or trinkets (school supplies) are preferred). These treats will be shared during our snack time. Birthdays are recognized during our calendar routine as well. We will recognize summer birthdays at the end of the school year.

    I will send home book order forms for you and your child to look over periodically. Book clubs offer books at reduced prices. It's a great way to build your child's home library and help your teacher earn points to purchase new books for the classroom. Please make checks payable to Scholastic Books.  We cannot accept cash.  You may also order online at www.scholasticbooks.com (there is a direct link on my webpage).   Our class code is H4BJ6.  When you order online, our class receives a FREE book. 

    Please save those Box Tops and turn them in to school often.  Box Tops = $$$$ for our school.  

    C Parent-teacher conferences will be held December 5th and 6th.  Watch for information and reply accordingly.  Conferences will only take about 15 minutes and are required to review your child's progress. Conferences can take place before, after, or during school or may even be held via a phone conference. I will do my best to accommodate everyone.

    Communication is important. Feel free to contact me whenever you have a question, comment, or concern. You can reach me by phone (716-926-2759), in person, by email (susan.serena@lscsd.org), or by note.

    Our district has adopted the New York State Common Core standards and curriculum.  You will hear your child refer to the words "Common Core" often.  If you have any questions regarding the New York State 1st grade Common Core modules and domains OR for help with homework, please visit https://www.engageny.org and navigate the site for 1st grade material.

    We will visit the computer lab once a week to work on computer skills. If you have access to a computer and the internet, please encourage your child to visit my webpage to work on math, reading, and writing skills.

    D Discipline is simple. We work hard as a class to make the classroom a positive and safe place for all. Highland has a school wide discipline plan and students are expected to follow the same rules throughout the school day in every area of the school. Students will have the opportunity to earn great rewards for positive behaviors.  Dolch words - your child MUST learn ALL 220 words this year.  We will be practicing them often, please encourage them to study them often.

    E My school email address is susan.serena@lscsd.org. I check my email daily. If you have an email address that you'd like me to be aware of, please let me know.

    Please complete and return the emergency card promptly. If your home or work phone number change, please inform the office and me.

    On Early release days, students will be dismissed @ noon.

    F Information about field trips will come home in the bring everything everyday book (BEE) book and will be detailed in the field trip permission slip.

    G Our class will have a 40 minute Physical Education class in the gymnasium on days B,C,D, and E. Please make sure that your child is prepared on those days with sneakers and appropriate clothing.

    H  Students will NOT have daily homework in my 1st grade classroom.  It is expected however, that students will read for at least 20 minutes every night to improve their reading fluency.  Occasionally, reading fluency sheets or spelling lists will be sent home.  Students may improve their reading and math skills by visiting various websites such as abcya.com, raz-kids.com, ixlmath,com, etc. 

    I Independence is a goal for students because it builds self-esteem and self-confidence. 1st graders are very capable of doing many things on their own and I encourage them to do as much as they can for themselves in the classroom. Please work on the following self-help skills at home with your child: zipping, tying, dressing, etc.  We are very lucky to have ipads available to the students so that they may explore the various educational apps used to help strengthen their skills.

    J Writing takes place every day in 1st grade. One way we accomplish this is through writing stories in our journals during writer's workshop and common core skills units. Encourage your child to write at home for a variety of purposes.

    K Keep updated by reading the school's monthly newsletter, Mrs. Serena's monthly classroom news, and checking the bring everything everyday (Bee) book folder every day for other notes and information.

    L Our class will visit the Library twice a week on days B and E. Your child will check out a book and is expected to return it on the following Tuesday. If your child forgets to return the book, they will not be allowed to check out a new book until it is returned.

    We will hold literacy blocks for 120 minutes on a daily basis to reinforce reading, writing, and phonics skills.  Ask your child daily what he/she has learned. Every day produces something new and exciting.  Our lunch time is scheduled for 12:05-12:35. 

    M Our class will have Music class on days A and C. The 1st grade mathematics curriculum provides students with experiences that help them develop number sense and a positive attitude towards mathematics that will continue throughout their school career and lives.  Math facts - your child needs to know addition and subtraction to 10 without the use of manipulatives, fingers, or number lines.

    N Newsletters will be sent home on a monthly basis detailing school events, important dates, Parent Teacher Group (PTG) meetings, etc. Please look for them in your child's bring everything everyday (Bee) book folder.

    O Open House will take place in September. Look for information in your child's bring everything everyday (Bee) book folder. 

    P When picking up your child, please use the visitor parking lot and sign your child out in the office (before dismissal) or at the back door at the end of the day (3:15).  PE (Physical Education) will take place 4x a week this year on days B,C,D, and E.  

    Picture day will happen early in the school year. Look for information in your child's Bee book.

    Parent Teacher Group (PTG) meetings will be held in the library once a month at 3:30. Please check the school's monthly newsletter for information regarding dates.

    Q Questions? Please feel free to call, email, or send a note. I have an open door policy and look forward to speaking with you.



    R 1st grade report cards will be sent home 3 times during the year. We will meet to review your child's report card in December.

    S The focus of the 1st grade science curriculum is on developing an awareness of the world in which we live. Science concepts and skills will be explored utilizing a literacy based,hands-on approach with science kits.

    The 1st grade social studies curriculum focuses on the students and how they relate to others in their families, classroom, school, and community. Social studies concepts and skills will be explored utilizing a literacy based, hands-on approach.

    Due to our later lunch, we will have snack in the morning.  Please send a healthy snack for your child to eat. 

    Show and Tell will be every Friday. Please allow your child to bring something to show to the class. This activity fosters communication and speaking skills.

    We will be using STAR Literacy testing various times throughout the year for reading and math.  This program shows your child's progress throughout the course of the year and will be shared with you during parent/teacher conferences.  

    T If your child has any changes in their transportation, please notify the office immediately.  We will use technology often during the week.  Please ask your child to share their activities with you.  


    U and V Volunteers and visitors must register in the office and pick up a visitor's pass.

    Family vacations are wonderful opportunities for your family.  Please be sure to let us know when you are planning on taking a vacation during the school calendar. I will be happy to gather some work for your child so that they don't fall behind in their studies.

    W I welcome parent classroom visits and volunteers. Please call to schedule an appointment.  If you would like to read a book or do a craft with the students, please let me know.  Please visit my webpage for direct links to educational websites and other useful information.  Visit www.lakeshorecsd.org....schools.....Highland.....teacher web sites.....Mrs. Serena. 

    X Parents and family members may eXit and enter via the main school entry.

    Y Your ideas and suggestions are always welcome!!!!!

    Z ZZZZZZZ........Make sure that your child gets plenty of rest. Setting and keeping a bedtime routine is a wonderful gift that you can give your child to help them succeed everyday.