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Saturday, November 14, 2015

Fall Conferences

Good Afternoon! Happy Weekend!

I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend so far, and are gearing up for another wonderful holiday season. I can't believe Thanksgiving is just around the corner! 

On Friday, I spent the day in Chicago at a conference, and had the pleasure of listening to our curriculum developer, Lucy Calkins. She is one of the members of Teacher's College Reading and Writing project, which is how many of the K-8 teachers in Middleton are being trained in the workshop model. She was able to briefly discuss some of the main aspects of teaching reading and writing in the model, and give a good summary of what she focuses on for an entire week in just a few hours.  I came away with many great ideas and understandings of our curriculum, and am excited to roll up my sleeves a little higher for the oncoming quarters. 

The students are currently working on a new understanding of non fiction reading and writing. To start the unit off, I focus a lot of my attention during reading on strategies to help them understand everything they can. Through understanding and "orienting" themselves with the type of text and structure they are reading, to word work and features of non fiction, the students should walk away knowing how to look at non fiction, and get the most from it. During writing, we are warming the kids up to presenting "all that they know" on a topic, and working on adding in the basics to non fiction writing. Once they are finished with these presentations, the kids will then pick a topic that they will actually dive deeper into informational writing. 

In Everyday Math, many of the kids are working on long division and since I know my kids will be taking the unit 4 test before break, I suspect that many of the kids are in that same boat as well. So parents, be aware, there will probably be a math test next week in your child's class. If you're not sure, check with your child.

We finally finished up our first science unit last week on Landforms. I was very impressed during each of the investigations how well the kids figured out and discovered the main ideas of how landforms are created. Even more so, whenever we did these investigations, the kids all were highly engaged and were speaking the language. It looks like my class has a lot of scientists this year! 

1. Parent teacher conferences are Tuesday and Thursday of this week
I have a few slots available if anyone needs to sign up or reschedule. However, this also means that I will be running a tight ship both of these nights. Conferences are only 15 minutes, and the better I can stay on time, the better everyone will be. Especially on Wednesday and Friday, when I have to come back and teach after some long nights! 

If you have any concerns or questions, please let me know now, so I can  satisfy your needs, and focus on what YOU want to know. 

Here is the main idea of my conference:

1. How your child rocks
2. What your child is rocking at in class
3. Anything goals your child has for next quarter
4. How I am going to help your child achieve that goal
5. What your child thinks about 5th grade
5. Questions ( time permitting)

again please let me know if you have any issues, questions or concerns.

2. I've been noticing my library has been getting a little thin. Which means, it looks like this is a good time for a book round up.  If you see any of my classroom library books laying around the house or car, can you please have your child bring them in on Monday? I think we need to review the library check out protocol with my kiddos. As many of my graphic novels , (Bone, Amulet, and Inuyasha)  which are supposed to stay in the room, and Diary of a Wimpy Kids books, have not been checked out and are not in their spots. 

If you are unsure, my books have my name written in them on the inside cover, as well as a letter dot in the corner. Some may not have these, most of them do. 

I am so  excited and thrilled to see all of you next week! 
Have a great rest of your weekend! 


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