Thursday, December 20, 2012

Newsletter December 20, 2012

What a way to start the break.  I am actually bummed that we will not have school Friday; we had such a great day planned.  However, the weather definitely had its own plans.  Thank you so much for the incredible 2 months back I have had.  I am thoroughly enjoying the students and all the great learning that is happening.  I am excited for 2013 and all of the great adventures we will have.
Math – We will take the test either Wednesday or Thursday when we get back, I have to finalize a plan with Mr. Getz and Mr. Wichser and will let you know.  We will still have a fraction celebration with a pizza lunch, that will probably happen Friday the 4th. 
Science – We did not get to do the super tube challenge so we will find the time when we get back. We have started investigating planes and the students are getting a great grasp of what it means to have a system in a controlled experiment. 
Social Studies – We finished the Explorers and now move into Plymouth and the first colony.  We will be furthering our knowledge through readers theatre and also start to practice note taking - a great skill needed in life.
Reading – We wrapped up fairy tales with the sad story of The Little Mermaid; you could have heard a pin drop in the classroom on those last few pages.  My mother regaled us with many stories of Hans Christian Andersen and I was so proud of how great the questions were that the students asked.  they were definitely into the presentation.  After break we will focus on tearing apart vocabulary and different vocabulary tricks writers use.  I have signed us up for which I cannot wait to use with the students to see what they are reading and share great books with them.  I will also be starting literacy assessments soon.
Writing – The essay unit finished this week with students needing to share their essays with me via Google docs.  Our next unit will focus on writing big stories, so back into fiction.  I cannot wait to see my students' imagination at play.  There is no blogging challenge over break, although we just got 130 comments today, i do hope the students feel like sharing stories if they have them.
Special Notes –
* What an incredibly special moment it was to have Joel Stave in our classroom last Friday.  I wish you could have seen the faces of the kids.  Joel was a very gracious and kind presenter, and he even wrote us a very heartfelt thank you email.  We sent him a very arge envelope filled to the brim with thank you cards yesterday.  
* Geography bee will start when we get back, we did not get to it this week. I keep track of the scores and pass them onto Ms. Weber who will let me know after the 4th whether any kids made it in.
* There will be no homework over break, I hope the students will blog and read but that is it.  This is their chance to gear up for the second half of 5th grade.
* How to presentations have been informative so far.  It is great to see the diversity in what the students choose to do and how proud they are.  We have had really great live and videotaped ones.  I do apologize if the media component became bothersome for you as parents, that was not my intention.
*  Thank you so much for the much too generous Christmas presents, I always tell the kids that they are my best presents and it is true.
* MAP testing starts after break on the afternoons of January 7th and January 8th.
* Thea is actively pointing at every single toy she sees and asking Santa to get it for her, particular anything pink and sparkly.  We love the holidays and cannot wait to see her face on Christmas. 
* I have some dates for you to put on your calendars: Winter break is from December 22nd through January 2nd, new math groups Friday, January 4th, Yahara final versions are due to me Friday, January 4th,   MAP testing January 7th and 8th at 1:00 PM, No school Monday, January 21st and Monday, January 28th.


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