Thursday, April 12, 2018

End of the Year Reminders

As we head into our last few weeks of school, I wanted to provide you with a few special dates and reminders.

  • Our final Scholastic order is due May 2nd.  Our class code is MBNGY.  If you would like to purchase some books for your child to read over the summer, please place the order online by May 2nd.  
  • Cimarron trip is April 25th (See below for details)
  • Field Day is scheduled for May 23rd, which is different than the original date I provided of May 11th.  
  • Our 5th Grade picnic will take place at Tillman Park (across from Legend High School) on May 25th from approximately 10:00-1:30.  Parents are encouraged to pack a bag lunch and join us for a day of fun.  Students will be provided with a picnic lunch.
  • Our 5th grade slideshow will follow the picnic.  At 1:30, as students are loading the buses, parents are welcome to head back to the GRE gym to view our end-of-year slideshow.  More information about the last day of school will be sent home in May.  

Classroom Update

Reading-  During reader's workshop, students are learning how to synthesize information.  To do this, they are identify what they already know, combining their knowledge with something new from the text and creating a new thought or idea.  As we wrap up the school year, we will revisit all of the reading strategies we have learned this year and apply them to our final round of book clubs.  During individual conferences, students will continue to work on and discuss their personal goals.

Writing- Our final unit of writing will focus on informational writing.  Students are currently researching different topics related to Colonial America.  They will apply the mini lessons from our writer's workshop to create an informational paper on the topic of their choice.  We will then integrate the American Revolution into our second paper.  Students will continue to use our Lucy Calkin's checklist to create personal goals to improve their writing and to obtain the goals we set during spring conferences.  All published pieces will be available through Google Classroom.

Social Studies- We are integrating social studies into both reading and writing.  Students are learning how to synthesize information as they learn about early colonies and research their topic for their informational writing piece.

Math- We are spending a few days reviewing multiplication and division strategies to ensure that all students feel confident with these concepts before transitioning into middle school.  Then we will move into interpreting data and creating charts.

Field Trip-  Students will be taking a quick field trip over to Cimarron Middle School April 25th.  The trip will allow students to tour the school and ask questions they have concerning 6th grade.  There is no cost, but a completed permission slip is required for all students.  Slips will be sent home today, April 12th, and need to be returned as soon as possible.

Friday, March 2, 2018

March Update

Scholastic Order
Our Next Scholastic order is due March 16th.  Our class code is MBNGY.  Please use this to place orders online. 

5th Grade Slideshow
On the last day of school, students and parents will have the opportunity to view a slideshow that shows event that took place this year.  As a special way to recognize how much our students have grown over the years, I am requesting that each parent send me a baby photo of your student.  The photo can be as young as you would like, but the student should be the only person in the picture.  Please make sure that the student is clothed and the picture is appropriate for a large audience.  Often times parents like to send in funny pictures, while other parents share more formal photos.  The choice is completely yours!  Please email the photo to me, as a new email with your child's name in the subject.  The photo needs to be sent as a jpg. If you have any questions, please let me know.  Pictures should be sent by March 16th.  Thank you for taking the time to make the last day of elementary school special for our kids!

Important Dates:
Spring Conferences: March 8th and 15th (Please sign up on the GRE website)
Testing: March 28th, 29th, 30th, April 2nd, 3rd, 4th 9th, 10, and 11th
Cimarron Visit: April 25th 1pm-2pm (Students only- more information will be sent in April)
Puberty Talk: May 10th (Tentative- more information will be sent in April, including links to the videos that will be shown)
Field Day: May 11th
Outdoor Ed Trip: May 21st (More information will be sent home in May)
5th Grade Picnic and Slideshow: May 25th (More information will be sent home in May)

Curriculum Update: 

Reading:  During reader's workshop, students are working on the reading strategy of determining importance.  Students are identifying which parts of the text they need to remember after they read.  They will discuss the difference between information that is important and information that is interesting.  They will also justify their thinking  by explaining how the meaning of the text would change if they the important information was removed. We will use this strategy in Social Studies and Writing as we learn more about Colonial America.  Students should be reading for at least 35 minutes each night. 

Writing: Students have been learning how to respond to literature.  We focused on creating meaningful responses that restate the question, answer the question, explain our thinking using evidence from the text, and create an ending that provides closure. As we move into April, we will begin out Informational Writing Unit.  During this time, students will further explore Colonial America and the American Revolution by researching a topic of their choice and creating a paper that shares the information they have learned.

Math: We have spent the past few weeks working with decimals.  Students have compared, ordered, added, and subtracted decimals.  They did a fantastic job on this unit. I encourage you to help them find decimals in the real world, other than money.  At this point, they should be able to have meaningful conversations about the value of any decimals you find.  This week we started multiplying fractions. Over the next few weeks, we will multiply and divide fractions.  Although our goal is to reach the most efficient strategies to solve these problems, we will start by helping them conceptually understand what they are doing.  As we go into the spring, I strongly recommend that your child practice their basic multiplication facts. 

Social Studies and Science: During our Google augmented reality  experience, students reviewed content that we covered in the fall.  We reviewed how body systems were interdependent and how severe weather impacts Earth. Before spring break, we will discuss mixtures and solutions.  Students will do experiments that help them understand how to separate a variety of mixtures and how solutions differ from mixtures.

To prepare for our Colonial America unit, we have been reading Blood on the River, a chapter book about Jamestown.  We've throughly discussed the struggles that early colonists faced as they tried to create a permeant colony in the New World.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Valentine's Party

Our class party will be February 14th at 2:20pm. Please click here  if you would like to donate an item to our party.   Students have been given a list of their classmates' names to use if they would  like to make cards.  If your child makes cards, please make sure they include all of the students in our class. 

Monday, January 22, 2018

January Update

Our students have done a great job starting 2018 off on the right foot.  Below you will find a summary of what we have been doing in class and where we are headed as we approach February. 

Writing- Students kicked off the new year learning about memoirs.  They have spent time going through their journals and identifying patterns in their writing.   We are focusing on writing about topics that are important in our lives. As we move into to February, we will transition into responding to literature. 

Reading- During reader's workshop, students have been making inferences and supporting their thinking using text clues and their background knowledge.  Students are encouraged to use this reading strategy when they read at home and as they write their reading responses.  

Math- We recently completed our unit on adding and subtracting fractions.  Our class did a great working with like and unlike fractions, as well as mixed numbers.  Our next unit will focus on decimals, but we will continue to work with fractions for the remainder of the year.  As always, it is imperative that all students know their basic multiplication facts.

Social Studies- Students researched and discussed different explorers and the reasons for their explorations.  As we read Blood on the River, we will discuss the first permanent colony, Jamestown. We will continue learning about Colonial America throughout the spring and will integrate what we learn into our future writing lessons. 

  • Our next Scholastic order is due this Wednesday, January 24th.  
  • Cimarron Elective Forms are due back February 2nd.