Tuesday, September 25, 2007

September 26th, 2007

Our Finished FALL Acrostics

Sponge painting our FALL backgrounds

Hi Everyone!

I enjoyed having the opportunity to meet with many of you at "Get Acquainted Night." I know the children were thrilled to receive "surprise" letters from you in their desks on Friday morning. It was a brief meet and greet, but please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about class or homework.

Here's the quick update...

CLIMB Theater (Creative Learning Ideas for Mind and Body): We had a special treat on Wednesday. Khary & Elizabeth (actors) from CLIMB Theater visited our classroom and performed various skits on bullying and ways to STOP bullies from bothering us. They were energetic and had everyone participating in their skits. They will be visiting all the classrooms K-8 in Northborough this fall. If you want to check out the program, they are offering a parent workshop at Proctor School on October 2nd at 7:00 pm.
Mathematics: We are wrapping up our study of addition and subtraction. We will have a test next Friday, October 5th. We will be moving on to money next, a favorite topic for many children!

Social Studies: We are almost ready for an economics test. A study guide will be sent home in your child's agenda sometime next week. Our next focus will be on our U.S. neighbors, Canada & Mexico! Mrs. Brush will be leading this unit.

Field Trip: Here is a link for our field trip to the mills, if you are feeling curious...

Writing: We have finished our beautiful FALL acrostic poems and they are hanging in our hall. Check out the photos above of our creative process. We had a blast sponging our poem borders. Super Monkey is almost down to his last mission in Chimp City. We will publish a class book of his/her adventures for you to keep.

Reading: The Cod's Tale ABC Books are up and running. Ask your child which letter they will be writing about for our class book. Realistic fiction will begin soon!

Read-Aloud: We are still trying to solve the mystery of the missing Auntie Sarah Doll in our book, The Doll People. Papa Doll has just been "cat-snatched" by the Captain! Have your child predict if and where Auntie Sarah will be found.


  • Fall Fundraiser: Orders are due tomorrow- September 28th!

  • Field Trip $ and slip due tomorrow- September 28th! $15.00 check to ZEH P.T.O.

  • Picture Day: Wednesday, October 3rd, 2007

  • Math Test on Addition & Subtraction: Friday, October 5th!

  • Field Trip to Lowell Mills: Wednesday, October 17th, 2007

That's all for now. Thanks & have a great weekend!

-JoAnne Gorham

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

September 19, 2007

Hi Everyone!

It was great to see so many Zeh faces out at Applefest last weekend. Emma & I certainly enjoyed the parade and the gorgeous cool weather. As you can see, Emma was also quite pleased with the paper bag hat that she made at the Newcomer's Booth. Fall is lurking and it seems hard to believe that tomorrow is the last day of summer!

Here are some quick updates on Room 5's activities:

Math: Quiz on Place Value tomorrow. We will begin to review addition & subtraction next. Please keep practicing the multiplication facts. We will be multiplying and dividing very soon!

Social Studies: We are coming close to wrapping up our Economics unit. I have planned a fabulous field trip to the Boott Cotton Mills in Lowell for mid-October. Details to follow.

Writing: I am amazed at the wonderful work that is being produced so early on in the year. The third grade teachers deserve a nod for preparing such creative writers. Super Monkey is alive, well, and flying high in Room 5! We are focusing not only on revising and editing skills, but finding our 5 BEST vocabulary words to share in every paragraph we draft. Stay tuned for more Super Monkey adventures!

Reading: Our nonfiction unit on The Cod's Tale, is coming to a close. We will wrap it up with an ABC book using information we've learned from the text. Our next unit will be on realistic fiction. We will be reading The War with Grandpa and Because of Winn-Dixie.

Language Arts: We are working on a FALL acrostic poem and painting project. We are also looking for new words that help to "paint" vivid pictures in our poems.

Read aloud: We have begun to read The Doll People by Ann M. Martin. It is a fantasy/mystery involving a Victorian doll family and a modern "plastic" doll family. They must work together to uncover the mystery of the missing Auntie Sarah Doll. Ask you child which family they prefer; the Funcrafts or the Doll Family. Perhaps, they have some predictions to share with you.

Homework Help: Agendas are assigned and initialed by a teacher everyday. I encourage you to review them with your child. Feel free to initial the agenda as well. Also, if the homework is on colored paper, it it due on Friday. If it is on white paper, it is due the next day. Please contact me with questions or concerns.


  1. Curriculum Night for Parents is Thursday, September 20th from 6:30-7:15 for Grades 3-5 and from 7:15-8:00 for Grades 1-2. Please feel free to drop in, visit with Mrs. Brush & I, and investigate your child's daytime home. I look forward to seeing you there!
  2. Fall Fundraiser is at its mid-point. Please return order forms by the end of September.
  3. Picture Day for our class is Wednesday, October 3rd. Please have orders in to school if you plan to purchase a photo package.
  4. Field Trip to the Boott Cotton Mills will be Wednesday, October 17th for our class only. Mrs. Zia & Mrs. Villaflor will take their classes on Friday, October 19th. The museum was not able to accomodate a group of our size for their guided program on one day. Permission slips are coming soon.

Thanks for all you do to support your child at home. We have had a great couple of weeks and I am really enjoying working with this wonderful class!

-JoAnne Gorham

Friday, September 7, 2007

My First "Real" Week!

Hi Everyone!
First, I just want to say THANK YOU to all the warm wishes for a speedy recovery that were sent my way. Missing the first couple days of school was very traumatic for me as I love to spend time getting to know my new students. I am taking things slow and getting better each day. We were very fortunate to have had a student teacher begin her semester with us. Mrs. Susan Brush is our student teacher from Framingham State College. She will remain with us until December vacation. Please help her to feel welcome to Zeh School.

It was wonderful to return to school on Tuesday and get the children used to our schedule and our daily routines. We have had some great conversations at our morning meetings about weekend activities, rules for our classroom, and jobs that we need to have to keep our classroom running smoothly. The students have a strong sense of community and are well spoken at these meetings.

Just for your planning, our Specialist Schedule is as follows:
Monday: Chorus & Phys. Ed. (wear sneakers/rubber soled shoes)
Tuesday: Library
Wednesday: Art
Thursday: Computer Lab & Phys. Ed. (wear sneakers/rubber soled shoes)
Friday: Music (bring recorder)

So here's what we've been up to in Room 5:
  • In writing, we are wrapping up our first project, "The Best Part of Me." You will be able to see our published work on our bulletin board if you are able to attend Curriculum Night on September 20th. For our next topic, we will be working on 3-paragraph essays about the legendary Super Monkey. (A Room 5 Favorite!)
  • In reading, we are working on a nonfiction unit and learning about 7 structures of nonfiction text using The Cod's Tale.
  • In mathematics, we have begun to review and explore place value into the millions place. We will be playing some games using dice and cards this week to help us practice.
  • In social studies, we wrapped up hemispheres/continents/oceans. We will have a short quiz this coming week. Our economics unit is already off to a great start. We have been discussing the 3 types of resources (natural, human, and capital) and are working on a poster project with partners. This should also be on display on Curriculum Night.
  • For read-aloud, we are reading, The Classroom at the End of the Hall by Douglas Evans. Ask your child about his/her favorite chapter so far.


  1. Please take care to pack morning snacks for your child that are both healthy and nut-free. We have writing and reading block right after snack, so sugar-laden snacks make it difficult for everyone to concentrate! Fruit, veggies, crackers, water, etc. are great choices!
  2. There is no school next Thursday, September 13th.
  3. Curriculum Night for Parents is September 20th. Hope to see you there!
  4. Box Tops are now up and running. We have an envelope in our classroom for them.
  5. The Fall Fundraiser is also in progress. Submit orders back to school when complete.
  6. Scholastic Book Orders will be sent home next week and be due back to school on Friday, September 14th. If ordering from multiple clubs, you can submit one check made out to Scholastic Book Clubs.
  7. Get ready! Applefest is next weekend!

That's all for now. Please post a comment and let me know if this is a helpful tool for you. As I stated before, I am new to blogging and think it is a neat way to post info and keep everyone updated!

Have a great weekend!

JoAnne Gorham