6.16.19 Wow! Last update of the year! I want to take a couple of minutes to thank all of you for sharing your children with me. I am honored to have been able to work with and get to know each of them.
Tomorrow morning, we will be reviewing your child’s work and skills, trying to keep a somewhat “normal” kind of day. In the afternoon we will be gathering up supplies and all last-minute work, so please send in an extra bag with your child (students tend to gather a lot of stuff at school throughout the year).
On Tuesday, your child will have the opportunity to meet all the fifth-grade teachers, although specific classes will not be announced in August. I also plan to give students time to play games that they will be able to play at home and keep their skills sharp.
Feel free to email me over the summer or next year (or the year after) if there is anything I can do to help your child continue to grow.
6.9.19 Big events this week…Our field trip is on Wednesday! Please keep an eye on the weather for NORTHERN New Hampshire. So far it is looking dry, but cool. Layers are always good. For those who are chaperoning, I am encouraging you to come in to school with your child, so that I may go over the rules (and your child knows you heard them too). As I said last week, we request chaperones to carpool or drive themselves. (It is fine if you carpool with parents who have students in other classes, both buses get there and leave at the same time.)
Our Field Day is Thursday morning and Ms. Baines has some exciting things planned. Please be sure your child has plenty of water, and outdoor clothing Thursday as well.
I have decided NOT to assign reading log journals this week, although I do have a couple of students who did not hand them in last week. (Please check with your child and help them get it in as soon as possible.) I am still assigning the “At Home Journal” this week and I will collect them all on Thursday, so please be sure your child has 3 or 4 entries in their journal by then. Please encourage him/her to reflect about 4th grade, write about things they hope for in 5th grade, and what they are looking forward to doing this summer (makes for great reading in a few years!). Reading 20 – 30 minutes a night should now be a habit and I expect students to be doing that until the last day of school and throughout the summer.
6.2.19 Happy June everyone! This week’s big events include our Awards Assembly on Wednesday morning, our last community meeting on Thursday morning, and we are hoping to do our Reading Challenge on Thursday afternoon. If it is raining on Thursday afternoon, we will try to do it next Monday. Our class alone has read 87 books and counting! (Our goal was 80)
Thanks to all who volunteered to chaperone our field trip to the Flume. I think we have 13 or 14 chaperones, which means it will be you, your child and maybe one other student. This is a wonderful trip, during which you and your child may walk at your own pace (within reason), visit with friends and enjoy the beauty of New Hampshire. I will be sending more information about what to bring later in the week. A couple of highlights include: Dress for the weather up north (which can be very different than the weather here), students are responsible for everything they bring, and students need to have their own lunch. Let’s hope for nice weather. Please keep in mind that we have never cancelled this trip, even if there is rain predicted. (Even when it is raining the Flume is pretty protected.)
We ask parents to carpool or drive themselves to the Flume and Cannon. Thanks for your understanding.
5.27.19 Heading into the home stretch! Please continue to help your child to stay focused. I am going to try to keep things as “normal” as I can. Homework will continue to be to read 20 minutes a night, write 10 minutes in the “At Home Journal” 3 nights a week, and either writing a reading log journal entry or taking a reading counts quiz once a week. Mathematical conversations and practice will also be expected, this week and next for sure…we can play the last full week of school by ear.
Math tests came home in Thursday folders this past week, please be sure you review them with your child. If you or your child have any questions about scores, please ask me.
Please be sure to get Flume permission slips in as soon as possible. It really makes paper work easier for me. Remember, students are free and I simply need the permission slip signed. If you would like to chaperone, I would be delighted! Please be sure you have been finger printed and send your check made out to New Boston Central School. Again, the sooner these get in, the less paperwork I need to do.
Last but not least, don’t forget our Memorial Day program on Thursday at 9:00 in the gym. All are invited if you can make it. It is very special and the fourth grade will be performing “My Country Tis of Thee”.
5.19.19 Hope you all got a chance to get out and enjoy this beautiful weather. We have a very “normal” week this week, no testing, no field trips and no assemblies.
We have been working on an energy unit during which we are “building bumper coasters”. It has been quite challenging, yet fun…that’s what engineering is all about! If your child hasn’t told you about our bumper coasters, please ask them about it. Talk about the ways that they are overcoming the challenges in hopes that they can generalize this persistence to other areas!
5.13.19 I want to take a minute to thank you for such a special Teacher Appreciation Week. I cannot tell you how honored I am to be able to work with your children each and every day. I also hope that all of you moms had a good Mother’s Day.
The big thing this week is that our Unit 7 math assessment is tomorrow (we did change my original plan). Your children should have shown you his/her review sheet and done some studying this weekend. Homework tonight is to study some more and write how studying was done in the assignment book.
If you did not get a chance to fill out the survey about our new report cards, please do so. Your input is VERY important to us. They are due by this coming Friday.
We are coming into the last few weeks of school and it will be very important for you to encourage your child to stay with me and not check out. There is still much to learn in order to be best prepared for 5th grade. Please continue to remind your child to complete homework, tell you about what he/she has learned during the day, and share the work brought home in Thursday Folders.
5.5.19 Hope your children had an opportunity to play outside this weekend. They worked very hard last week on their SAS testing and really needed it. We have our last SAS session tomorrow morning, so please be sure your child gets a good night sleep tonight and eats a good breakfast tomorrow morning.
We will be back to normal homework this week: At home journals (really should have at least 3 entries, maybe more) and Reading Log Journals, which are coming home tomorrow and due this coming Friday (I am still missing a couple Reading Log Journals from before vacation, please ask your child if he/she has one of the ones I am missing).
We are asking parents to take a few minutes to fill out a survey about our new report cards. They are still a work in progress and your input is very important. This is the link: https://forms.office.com/Pages/ResponsePage.aspx?id=On%204JkxtQHkeT8TtCViJNQC9CeRmcx6hOpFasW%20xRqAJUN05ZMjVDOEMzVDM0Q1FSOVlCQU40RFQ3%20NS4u
I almost hate to bring this up after all of the testing your child has been doing, but it is almost time for our Unit 7 Math assessment. Your child will be bringing home a review sheet on Wednesday or Thursday and the test will be next Monday (May 13).
In honor of Memorial Day, we will be creating a Wall of Heroes. This Wall of Heroes invites families to remember and celebrate their military heroes. Look for a letter in your child’s folder tomorrow with more information.
Last but not least I will be turning in entries for our Young Author Award tomorrow, we have room for one or 2 more stories. If your child wanted to enter, please be sure he/she brings me his/her entry tomorrow morning.
4.28.19 Hope your children all had a good break and that you got to spend some extra quality time with them. We have a big week coming up! We are starting our State Assessments (SAS) on Tuesday. Your child has had a chance to practice and I assured them that all they need to do is just show off what they know. I am requesting this week (and next Sunday evening) that your child plays outside, gets to bed early, and eats a good breakfast each morning so he/she will be ready to put his/her best foot forward. Writing homework will be optional this week (which means I will not send home Reading Log Journals and I will not collect At Home Journals this week). I do, however, expect students to continue to read 20 minutes each night and take Reading Counts quizzes during the school day.
A few of our students expressed interest in entering work for our Young Author contest. I would like to stress the fact that this work needs to be done completely independently, without parental help. These stories are due by Wednesday, May 1st and are optional.
As I had mentioned a couple of weeks ago, we have challenged ourselves to read 80 books and pass 80 Reading Counts quizzes by June 1st. I’m hoping your child read over vacation, because before we left we only had 28 Reading Counts quizzes passed and we really should have had 40. Please encourage your child to keep reading and taking those quizzes.
Last but not least, I found a version of this letter on line a couple of years ago and I would like you to share it with your child. I have personalized it for our class and it really does come from my heart:
My Dearest Students,
This week we are starting our SAS Assessments and we will focus on reading, math and writing. I know how hard you will work, but there is something very important that you must know:
The SAS does not assess all of what makes each of you special and unique. The people who create these tests do not now each of you the way I do, and certainly not the way your families do.
They do not know that some of you are excellent hockey players, or that you love to play violin or soccer. They have not seen your natural and beautiful talent for making each other laugh. The do not know that your friends count on you to be there for them, that your laughter can brighten the dreariest day, or that your face turns red when you feel shy. They have not heard you explain the entire plot of Harry Potter. They do not know that you participate in sports, wonder about the future, or that sometimes you take care of your little brother or sister after school. They do not know that despite dealing with bad circumstances, you still come to school with a smile. They do not know that you can tell a great story or that you really love spending time (baking, hunting, Karate, fishing, shopping…) with special family members and friends. They do not now that you can be trustworthy, kind or thoughtful, and that you try every day to be your very best.
The scores you will get from this assessment will tell you something, but they will not tell you everything. There are many ways of being smart. You are smart! You are enough! You are the light that brightens my day! So while you are anticipating this test and while you are in the midst of it all, remember there is no way to “test” all the amazing and awesome things that make you, YOU!
4.14.19 We just finished learning about how our eyes work and how the eyes of animals work. I hope your child told you about all the interesting things we have learned. Some of them were sad that I did not give them “the lens” for their eye model. I told them I would put a link as to where you can get the pocket magnifiers in case you wanted to order them. They do come in packs of 12, but they aren’t very expensive.
This week we have our last visit from the New Hampshire Historical Society! This time they will be talking about New Hampshire Schools in colonial times. Monday we will be looking at the New Boston Historical Society web page. Dan Rothman has put some great information about the history of schools in New Boston on the web page. You may want to check it out!
Please be sure to take a look at Thursday folders this week, especially since there wasn’t one sent home last week. It will contain Unit 6 math assessment and the cumulative assessment. For the most part students did well. We will be working more on representing and interpreting data in the next week or so. If there are other areas on the cumulative assessment on which your child needs to work, please help him/her practice. If you need ideas, please shoot me an email and I would be happy to give you some ideas.
4.7.19 Our school wide reading challenge has started! We, as a class, have challenged ourselves to work together to read 80 books before the end of May! I told your children that the best way for me to keep track of how many books they have read is through Reading Counts quizzes, which means that for these next two months, they may take a reading counts quiz in place of a whole reading log entry every week. They may not however, read books that are too easy for them.
As many of you know, I have been giving “conversation homework” quite often. Please remember, if your child is not able to explain what he/she is assigned to explain, please encourage him/her to write a question in the assignment book and check in with me. It will be my hope that they will be able to explain it to you, so please ask again. The more students talk about their learning the better they know it!