Friday, November 15, 2013

Newsletter November 15, 2013

As Thanksgiving approaches, I have much to be thankful for.  The incredible students that are so eager to share their learning, the support of parents for all of our adventures, a team that meets every day and puts the kids first, and a school where we feel like a family.  Thank you for everything that you do for me and for us.
Special Notes
* We finally have another challenge today, the spaghetti and marshmallow tower challenge.  Teams were selected by me and I will take pictures throughout.
* The students are creating mitten holiday cards to send around the world.  We have 29 cards we have to make and send to other classrooms before December 7th
*  We have our flipstick Olympics coming up on Monday.  I cannot wait to see which teams succeed.
*  Conferences continue next week, please remember to bring your child with you.
* I encourage students to bring in their swimming gear before on Monday since their first time is Tuesday.  They will be gone from WM from 9:30 to 11 AM.
*  The book fair is next week; students may bring money and shop during lunch.
*  Congratulations to our quiz bowl competitors: Rose, Alex, Zach and Syd.  They will compete on the 20th.
* Thea thinks Santa is coming every day and is waiting eagerly for the snow to come since that means her birthday is next.  With the recent snow fall we have had one disappointed little girl when the next day is not her birthday (she is a New Year’s Eve baby).
* I have some dates for you to put on your calendars: Swimming is November 19th, 21st, 25th, and December 2nd and 4th,   No school (Happy Thanksgiving) November 27th, 28th, and 29th, Winter Tea Wednesday, December 4th at 11:35 AM, and winter break is from December 21st through January 1st.
MathWe are working our way through unit 4 with the test now on Tuesday, November 26th.  This unit is all about division and those math facts are important.  The next unit is my favorite topic; fractions!
Social Studies – The students have been busy in the explorer simulation.  Several students have died in the simulation from dysentery and typhoid.  We have also found a great way to get background knowledge by weaving social studies into our reading time, since we are studying non-fiction texts.  This way we can reserve our actual social studies time for hands-on explorations.
Reading We started our nonfiction unit this week and I love the honesty of the children and their thoughts on what happens when they read nonfiction.  We have been exploring strategies on note taking as well as how to figure out what the main idea is in a text.  We have also started our next read aloud, The False Prince, and have loved it so far.

Writing Writing has been focused on taking our facts and making them into blurbs this week as we get one step closer to our completed nonfiction picture books.  I love seeing how much thought the students are putting into their audience and whether a 1st grader will really like their book or not.

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