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Friday, February 10, 2017

Love this Class

I can't believe it's February already. I was just thinking about this last night, and my heart dropped a bit when I realized I only have about 15 weeks or so left with this group. We have still a lot of information to cover and learning to gain, but wow, this year is flying by.

The month of February and March are pretty intense, as we had grades due last week, and a lot of activities planned. This is great, as these months are usually the hardest with the dreariness of the weather, so there are a lot of things to look forward to.


Please read the 7 Announcements

0. Valentines Day-

Please no treats or candies for the class, as dietary and heath concerns are a priority, as well as equity. If your child wants to make valentine's however, it's an all or none policy! Let me know if you need a class list! 

1. Fountas and Pinelle Testing:

 I had the pleasure of retesting the kiddos in reading, and I am proud to say that everyone went up at least one level, or stayed at a very good level. This is awesome! The kids are reading so much, and have a passion for reading like I've never seen before.

2. Congratulations to Abby, Aadil and Cam for making it into the math meet!
 Also, an honorable mention to Ian for being an alternate! I am so proud of all of those who attempted to take the test (I don't think I would have had the guts when I was in 5th grade!)

3. Jewel Parker Rhodes.

Author of our current read aloud, Towers Falling, and The Ninth Ward is Skyping with the 5th grade students next Wednesday, the 15th. Towers Falling is a historical fiction novel about the events of 9/11, just for you to be aware of the topics we are discussing in class. 

4. Also, we have moved on from BYOD. 

Most of the students were in favor of being a BYOD classroom in their current letters to me for arguing practice. Because of this, and I have never had experience with this personally, we are going to have a trial period to test it out.  Keep on the look out for a BYOD contract that the kids will be bringing home to read over with you.  I am really excited to try this, as I am a huge fan of the benefits (and I know the kids will like listening to their own music, instead of my mash ups between Vivaldi and Bonnie Taylor!)

This also means that we are starting the real argumentative beast, where the students are picking their own topics that they are passionate about, and writing a clear argument in favor or not in favor for. Some of the topics we discussed today were relating to school environments and standardize testing, to animal rights, athletics, global warming, and current political issues. I asked the students that during the discussions that they remember to be empathetic and sensitive, as not everyone is in agreement with each other on various things.

I told them for homework tonight is to come home and talk to you about the topics they were most passionate about, and see if they could add any more issues to their growing lists. (I think one student had over 35 topics that he wanted to debate!)

3. 5th Grade Dance/ Hat Day is February 17th. 

Student Council is trying to fundraise, so if students want to wear a hat that day, they will need to contribute a dollar to the hat fund.

4. Share the Reading event is taking place February 25th! 

5.  Spirit Week is coming up March 13-17. 

This is an exclusive event that all 5th graders will partake in, in honor of the Spirt Night event held on the 17th for the 6-8th graders. Due to scheduling conflicts, 5th graders are not able to come to the night time event, but will be able to partake in some of those activities on Friday afternoon.  Even more so, the rest of the week will be filled with other spirited activities that celebrate their life as KMS Cougars. For the event, the 5th grade team will be asking for some volunteers possibly, as well as donations, as there is a craft area on Friday for the kids to work on.  If you are interested in donating materials or supplies, or helping out that Friday Afternoon for the 5th graders, more information will soon be arriving.

I have not informed the kids yet of this, as I am still in the planning process, but this year's plans ROCK!


Parent Teacher Conferences will be March 2nd and March 9th. Same process as last time- I will be sending out a SignUp Genius link via email to make sure you have time to pick a slot!  As always, please let me know ahead of time if you have any questions or concerns so I can help with answers!