I hope this finds each of you relaxed and rejuvenation after a wonderful Winter Break! I know that we enjoyed time off, but felt that we were more busy than ever. I needed a break from my break! We've been up to a lot since we started back last Wednesday. With the end of the quarter coming up (Friday the 18th) we are wrapping up many of our units of study for the quarter.
Small Group- We are just about finished with our Knights & Castles unit. In fact we will finish chapter 10 today (11th) and take an AR quiz on the book. It has been a great unit in which we have spent a lot of time focusing on non-fiction text features, main ideas and details, and also learning some really great facts about the Middle Ages. The last few chapters have told us about different Market Days and Trade Fairs that kingdoms would have to sell items to everyone. We learned the 3 steps that someone would take in order to become a knight. We discussed the various ways that knights protected themselves through the years with armor and weapons. We talked about knights going to battle and also learned what sieges were. We ended our unit with a discussion on the end of the age of castles. It was a really fun way to use a lot of our reading strategies and skills to continue learning. This was a great deal of our unit this quarter in reading. Please talk to your child and ask them how they did on the quiz.
Writing- My husband's aunt teaches 3rd grade in California. We met up over winter break and discussed how fun it would be to have our students be pen pals. We got our first letters from her 25 third graders that live in Oceanside California. I thought that with our class college being in Arizona, it would be neat to write to friends who lived in the same region as Arizona. We certainly are learning a lot about how they run things at their school. They get to eat outside year round under pavilions unless it's raining. How cool is that? Your student has one or two pen pals from her class. Letters can be found in flex folders. I just ask that they stay there for now while we are writing them back. By the end of next week we should be ready to send our first letters back.
Spelling- This week our focus was review concepts of the quarter. We spent a lot of time refreshing on the two sounds for s, oi and oy spelling patterns, and long vowels. We also started our next unit. Words to practice were sent home.
We have begun flashcards in math. This week we spent some time reviewing multiplication and practicing what we have learned. Students are required to be automatic (know the facts without thinking as they would recognize letters in the alphabet without thinking. Please make sure your child continues to practice his/her flashcards on an daily basis. They should be past level 2 at this point. Our next unit will be fractions.
We are wrapping up our unit on mapping. Students will take a small test next week to practice all of their skills learned this quarter. I will send home information on Tuesday for the test.
We are working on a unit about internet safety right now. Students are learning all about the differences between .com and .org sites. They are also learning about password safety and not to give out information to anyone online.
Just an FYI- I will be gone Friday (1/18) and Monday (1/21). I will be out of the country with no internet or phone acces to school. If you need something immediately dealt with or have any questions/concerns while I am gone, please contact the office or any member of my team (Rebecca Steier, Rachael Clausius or Heidi Marak). Thanks :)
Upcoming Important Dates
Monday January 14-18- Peace Week
Thursday January 17-Career Night and Math Games, 5:30PM-7:00PM
Friday January 18-Early Release 12:00 ½ day work day for staff
Friday January 18-2nd Quarter ends
Monday January 21-Friday January 21-Book Fair
Friday January 25-Acclerated Reader Popcorn Party
Monday January 28-Show Choir, Badger High School