Monday, November 26, 2007

What a Success! Now it's back to work :)

Wow! What a tremendous success last Monday was in F3! With the help of volunteers, students in F3 were able to pack up 175 care packages. Karen Craddick took all these packages to the Georgetown Post Office, and all of the packages are now off to Ramadi. Good job F3! Read our latest letter from Paul! He's getting excited for all those care packages and asked us to write back with some specific information-- we'll have to work on that this week :)

Right now I'm in Boston again visiting my grandmother and Aunt Lorraine. My parents came up from Maryland too, so I've gotten to have a great time for Thanksgiving. I hope that all F3 families also had a great Thanksgiving.

Coming up this week, we're going to be working hard in math in anticipation of the end of the trimester which is this coming Friday. We will be completing our unit on division. Please make sure that your child is doing his or her math homework and checking over the work every night. A unit four math test on division will be on Friday.

We'll also be finishing up a major project: our camp brochures. Students will be bringing home a brochure they have been working on about their experience at Camp Seymour. Students will need to design the cover of their brochure at home. This will be due on Wednesday.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Getting ready for Monday, and... It was LOVELY to meet all of the Parents!

Check out pictures of Veteran's Day

Thanks for all the parents who came in to have a conference this past week. It was lovely to meet you, and GREAT to show off your child's work, and talk about how we together can help your child have the best fifth grade year possible.

I am really looking forward to Monday. We'll be making care packages from 9:45 until lunch time. By lunch time, there will be 88 boxes filled with 176 care packages for Paul's unit in Ramadi. Karen, Paul's wife, will be helping us out, and Don Mills of the American Legion Seattle Post #1 will be coming to celebrate the kids' hard work. Each student will get a canvas bag with which they will fill up to brim. From that bag, they will each make seven or eight care packages.

The items for the care packages were brought in from all over Maple as well as from Kimball Elementary School. What a great Beacon Hill effort to support the Marines in Ramadi.

In other news, the next math unit is on division. The unit test will be before the end of the trimester-- December. Overall kids have gotten better at the the math tests and I'm expecting them to do even better on this next test. Students will be making estimates when dividing with decimals, and using more than one way to solve division problems.

Starting next Thursday morning the 29th, I'll be meeting with a group of students for a math breakfast club. I let you know at your know at your conference if I expect to see your child on Thursday mornings. Make sure students are coming to school early enough so that they are ready to do math at 8:30 in F3. Also, I invite parents to bring in muffins or orange juice to share. There will be six students on working with me on Thursday mornings.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving. I'm thankful that I have such a remarkable F3 family to work with this year. Cheers!

Monday, November 12, 2007

It's a BIG Week Ahead!!

175 Care packages... two packages per box...

Wow! What a big week ahead! First off, I am excited to get to sit down with all parents and guardians of students in F3. We'll have a chance to review your child's work in class, as well as discuss how they can have the most successful fifth grade year possible. Please be on time for conferences as each one is only 20 minutes long.

What else should you expect at the conference? We will each sign a contract regarding student, teacher, and parent responsibilities, You will have time to become familiar with this website, and a website that is connected to the math curriculum used at the school. If your child did not pass one of the WASL tests last year, you will sign a student learning plan. You will have the opportunity to ask any and all questions about the fifth grade curriculum and how your child is doing academically and socially so far in fifth grade. I very much am looking forward to each and every conference.

Also this week is the long awaited Veteran's Day Project. Students at Maple from kindergarten to the other fifth grade classes will be bringing in tons of items over the course of the week. On Monday, November 19, student in F3 will be putting together 175 care packages for all of Paul's unit. Paul's wife Karen will be there to help on Monday, but I would LOVE additional help. So if you can come in anytime between 10 and noon on Monday, I would GREATLY appreciate it.
Lastly, students will be pleased to know that Erin and Jill will be joining us again for another week in F3. They will again be working with small groups, the whole group, as well as tutoring individual students. It's great to have you back, Erin and Jill!
I am writing this message on a Saturday evening here in Boston. I am here visiting my grandmother, Mima, and my Aunt Lorraine. I will be back in Seattle on Tuesday afternoon-- and look forward to seeing the class on Wednesday morning!
P.S. Check out the latest letter from Paul by clicking on the link to the left! He got our care package!

Monday, November 5, 2007

A GREAT time at Camp Seymour and a Busy Week Ahead

We had a GREAT time at Camp Seymour this past week. Students enjoyed classes about reptiles, forest ecology, rock climbing, canoing, and orienteering. Not only did they have FANTASTIC classes, students also enjoyed going on night hikes, warm campfires, cups of hot cocoa, and an AWESOME Halloween-- complete with a very haunted house (actually it was a haunted yurt). It was pretty great to be around the kids as they were experiencing one new thing after another.

I am thankful to most all of the kids who treated each other, the naturalists and teachers with respect. I think that EVERY student learned a lot about the environment, themselves, and cooperating with others. Good job F3.

We got a letter from Paul just a couple of days ago! He recently received our care package. He said that everything arrived okay except for the chocolate-- that melted. We'll have to keep that in mind for next time.

Coming up this week are some public speaking opportunities for the kids to spread the word about the Veteran's Day Project to all of the other classrooms at Maple. Also. students will be working in groups of five to create their own Camp Seymour brochures. Students will be pulled out to create podcasts of their family project. So much going on in F3!

Please respond to the final notices about parent conferences as soon as you get them this week. I am looking forward to our conferences next week.