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Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Crazy Sock Day March 23!

Crazy Sock Day!
Let’s raise awareness for Down Syndrome!

Sport your CRAZIEST socks to school on Friday, March 23rd!

$1 donation is welcome, but not mandatory.  All donations will be given to the National Down Syndrome Society

Image result for National down syndrome day

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Evidence of Reading: Reading Corps Slips!

"Squeak, squeak, SQUEAK!" (translation: "We're filling these out ourselves!")

Please be sure your child is up-to-date with her/his reading corps slips at school. Filling out a reading corps slip shows evidence of daily reading at home, a vitally important part of maintaining reading skills taught in school.

If you know your child has been reading every day but the forms just haven't been filled out, feel free to fill out the form like below, just being sure to note the dates read somewhere on the slip, including a parent signature:

Speckle and I always read before school but Miss V. keeps forgetting to fill out the form!

By now, your child should be able to take on the responsibility of crossing off a box each time he or she reads for 15 minutes! They are very familiar with writing the date, too! Allow your child to take that responsibility off your hands! When he/she has crossed out all of the boxes (with the accompanying dates), the slip is brought to you for your signature (and approval)!

Freckle decided that if she didn't fill out the slip, Miss V. would forget filling out hers too!

If you have any that can be sent in this week, please send them in ASAP!

Room 211 Reading Corps Chart as of February 27, 2018

Friday, February 16, 2018

Hurry! Hurry! A Contest from!

Excerpt from the contest page... 

Portrait Contest

Me and My Hero! Portrait Contest
Eligible Grades: K– 2
To Enter: Choose a historical figure with whom you feel you have something in common. Draw a portrait of that person alongside your self-portrait. Write three things you have in common with each other. Both portraits and the text must be presented on one page, no larger than 11" x 14".
Prizes: One Grand-Prize Winner will receive a classroom Skype visit from Brad Meltzer plus two Ordinary People Libraries—one for home and one for the classroom. Ten Runners-up will receive an Ordinary People Library.
Due Date: Entries must be RECEIVED by February 23, 2018.
Send to: Me and My Hero! Portrait Contest, PO Box 714, New York, NY, 10013-0714.

All entries must include student name, age, and grade level; teacher name; and school name, address, and phone number.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Tips for Talking to Youngsters About Tragic Events

As we mourn the tragic losses in Parkland, Florida, we can sometimes be concerned that even with careful sheltering from news outlets and media sources, our children can become aware of and be curious about why these senseless acts happen. It can be a difficult conversation on the best of days. A resource for helping to answer some of those questions (if they come up) can be found below in the form of a link to the SAMHSA guide for Parents, Caregivers and Teachers called, Tips for Talking With and Helping Children and Youth Cope After a Disaster or Traumatic Event.

We keep the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School community in our thoughts and prayers at this terribly sad time.

SAMHSA Guide to Helping Children Cope

Friday, December 15, 2017

Classroom Summary for December 11 - 15

Here's what we did this week...

In math we completed our fifth unit: working with subtraction up to 100. We observed that all of the strategies we learned working with double-digit addition worked "in reverse" for this subtraction unit. We used open number lines, but we counted up to subtract tens and counted back from right to left to subtract ones. We drew pictures as models using tens and ones drawings (sticks for tens and circles for ones) and crossed out what we subtracted instead of drawing more. When we needed to regroup, instead of making a ten with ones and trading them in for one ten, we were breaking a ten and to trade in for ten ones. We solved one and two-step problems too. Sometimes we needed to subtract in the first step and sometimes we needed to add. Sometimes we needed to do the opposite operation in the next step! We will continue working with addition and subtraction problems throughout the year; we will sometimes add money labels and sometimes we will add measurement labels! As we improve our math fact fluency our confidence with multi-step problem-solving will also improve.

In Miss Varrell's Fundations group, students finished working on their suffix unit and began working on the next unit about reading and spelling multisyllabic words. Students will learn how to "break apart" (syllabicate) longer words for more advanced decoding skills and will learn to spell (encode) multisyllabic words by applying learned spelling rules and patterns. This week we learned the "ic" spelling pattern: multisyllabic words ending with the sound "ick" are not spelled "i-c-k" but "i-c." In a monosyllabic word, it would be spelled "i-c-k." For example,

tick                mim/ic             sick             a/scor/bic           pick             com/ic

In Miss Varrell's reading group (and during writing workshop), students continued to work on their reading assessments. All elementary students take these district-mandated assessments throughout the month of December. These teacher-given "check-ins" are used to more accurately determine strengths and weaknesses in reading to help inform and target specific instruction. They are not computerized and children are given as much time as they need to complete their assessment.

When not working on their reading assessments, students learned more about two specific parts of speech: nouns and verbs. We learned about tenses (past, present and future) and how the endings of verbs must match the tense they are being written in. When we work with nouns we will be focusing on what a noun is and what it means when it is in its singular form or when it is in its plural form.

In Social Studies this week we made some of our culture presentations by sharing the information we collected on our family culture surveys. We haven't finished our presentations yet but we have learned that we have A LOT in common even though our family backgrounds may be very different--including having ancestors from different continents! We have talked about celebrating similar holidays, participating in similar traditions and religions, eating similar food and even having similar flag designs! We did, however, notice some differences between different cultures but the differences we noticed were interesting and we were curious to learn more (we sent some students home to ask more questions to bring us back more answers)! We will continue our exploration of culture next week. In many ways, it really is a small world!

F.Y.I. for Parents

  • First, second and third grade winter concert is Thursday, December 21st at 9AM. This concert is no longer than 45 minutes and children will return to class immediately following the performance. Children are asked to dress up. Parents are welcome to attend. It is usually a packed house... :)
  • Room 211's Secret Santa Activity begins this weekend (thank you for allowing your child to participate in this annual event). Please be sure to read the letter enclosed in your child's homework folder. It explains your child's responsibilities this week regarding homework messages and a gift. I have attached an example of a homemade gift that was actually made by a student for her secret pal (me!). You will notice that it is made with cardboard, covered in tin foil and decorated with illustrated pieces of construction paper and ribbon. The helpful hints that were given to the student for gift ideas were the following: favorite hobby--listening to music (see illustrations),  favorite food--pizza (round ornament) and favorite color--green (green illustrations). I still treasure this ornament. It is one of my all-time favorites. If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask. This activity is meant to be a fun and rewarding not stressful and overwhelming.  :)

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Concert Date Reminders from Mr. Lyons' and Mrs. Agati's Blogs...

Second Grade Winter Concert 2016-2017

Winter Concert Reminders

December 14th at 7:00 P.M. : 4th and 5th Grade Concert.  Students are asked to please
wear black and white.

December 21st at 9:00 A.M.: 1st, 2nd and 3rd Grade Concert.  Students are asked to please
dress up.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Helpful Homework Hints for Parents from Scholastic

If you're looking for some helpful homework ideas for your child (or children!), Jodie Rodriguez from Scholastic has put together this video (also located on the Scholastic Facebook page) to help! It's a little over 24 minutes long, but well worth the viewing if you're looking to cut down on your homework "stress" and gather some new ideas to help your child be a more focused and prepared homework participant!