Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Long time...

Without further delay, here is the update from Room 13...

We took a trip to Drumlin Farm last week to kick off our unit on Native Americans. The rain held off and we had a good visit. Thank you to Ms. Ryder (Chris's mom) for joining us as our chaperone.

Native tools for drilling holes.

Inside the wetu...

Grinding corn

Cleaning a deer skin with seashells

Making journey cake (noka hic)

Native games for teaching target practice

How do they make dugout canoes?

We found a frog in the pond. But where is his pal, Toad?

Checking out Grandma Maple

Cooking our journey cakes on the fire

In mathematics, we are working on telling time to the hour, the half-hour, and the quarter hour. Please reinforce this at home by asking your child to tell time for you. Time to the quarter hour is by far the most challenging so far. We will continue on with to the nearest minute. Remember- practice makes better!
We have been working on our paragraph writing and have completed our first story on a favorite summer activity/trip. The children have a opportunity to share their work in "The Author's Chair." We are now writing "The 3 Ways I Know it is Fall" and completing our writing samples on our trip to Drumlin Farm.

Good times at Mayflower Beach!

Fun in Rhode Island!

A trip to Canobie Lake!

We have also been working hard in computer lab! We always begin lab with keyboarding practice. The students are using a program called Type to Learn, Jr. After 10-15 minutes of practice, we move into our activity. This could be research using a website, software instruction (such as how to use Kidspiration), or publishing using MS Word. Some children have received certificates for completing keyboarding lessons and are thrilled! We conclude every lab session with 10-15 minutes of choice time. The children love lab and working with Mr. Gervais, our technology specialist!
Choice Time!

Research on Frogs vs. Toads

Choice Time!

A Keyboarding Whiz!

In reading, we wrapped up our study of Friends using Frog & Toad. We made some silly new bathing suits for Toad to wear. We also did some reader's theater to practice our understanding of how quotation marks and dialogue work. It was great to see the children practice, perform and use "funny" voices as they pretended to be Frog, Toad or the Narrator. Check out some wonderful pictures of Toad's new threads.

On Wednesday, we were treated to a visit by Ms. Carol Sexton, our Community Guest Reader. She was wonderful to us and even brought us treats- new backpacks! Thank you, Carol for volunteering and sharing your time!

Ms. Sexton read us this book by Sharon Creech.

We also just finished up "Bunnicula" by James & Deborah Howe for read aloud. The children loved the misadventures of Harold the dog, Chester the cat, and Bunnicula the bunny. Was Bunnicula really a vampire? What do you think? If your child enjoyed this book, there are others in the series to check out.

For our next read aloud, we will do a short author study on Chris Van Allsburg. He is a native New Englander (Rhode Island) and writes and illustrates his stories. Check out his website below if you want to learn more about him.
You may know that our class goal is to read 100 chapter books this year. We are tracking the books that we read at school and when a student completes a book, they fill out a "Chapter Book Review" form. Once the form is completed and approved, the student can then shade in a book on our large chart. We are well on our way to meeting our goal!
Gentle Reminders:
  • White, washed t-shirt for the Halloween tie-dye. Due by Tuesday 10/28.
  • Wear zebra colors on Tuesday! The Massachusetts Commissioner of Education will visit us at an 8:30 All-School Meeting!
  • Send in Parent Conference Requests ASAP!
  • Wednesday, October 29th- Report Card Meeting at Melican Middle School at 7:00 pm. This will be the "unveiling" of the new report card. Be there if you can!
  • Friday is the Halloween Parade at 1:30 PM. Parents and families are welcome to attend the parade. Please remember that this is a non-food event. Also, this is a preschool-5th event. Leave all scary masks and weapons at home as we do not want to frighten the younger children. Thank you in advance for your help with this.
  • Tuesday, November 4th, 2008: No school- Election Day
  • Tuesday, November 11th, 2008: No School- Veteran's Day
  • Parent Conferences are Tuesday, November 18th and Thursday, November 20th. I look forward to seeing you then!

Thank you for all you do to support your child's education! It is a pleasure working with this group of children!

Have a great week!

-JoAnne Gorham