Friday, April 20, 2018

Week of April 16-19th

Highlights of the week: 

Students have been working hard in all subjects! We had a great time on the field trip to the Planetarium.  Thank you so much to all those who were able to come and join us.  I appreciate you taking the time out of your busy schedules.  

  • Students have been learning about Persuasive writing techniques and the different ways advertisements persuade consumers.  They will be designing their own roller coaster and writing a persuasive ad for their  roller coaster.  
  • Students had their first Book Club Meeting this past week.  I loved hearing some of the deeper conversations in some groups and talking about the Revolutionary War.  Their books are giving them a little more insight. 
  • In projects, we practiced the tools and read through the practice test for our Science Assessment which is this coming Wednesday.  We have been studying matter and kids are now deep into practicing their experiments.  They will have a couple more tries to run through them, get their information together and present next week. I am excited to see them in action! 

Upcoming Testing:

  • Wednesday, April 25, 2018- Science
  • Wednesday, May 2, 2018-    ACT ELA
  • Thursday, May 3, 2018-       ACT Math/Science
  • Wednesday, May 9, 2018-   SBAC Math Part 1
  • Thursday, May 10, 2018-    SBAC Math Part 2
  • Tuesday, May 15, 2018-      SBAC ELA Part 1
  • Wednesday, May 16, 2018- SBAC ELA Part 2
Thank you so much to those of you that have already signed up to bring breakfast and/or snack foods.  The sign up did not include the testing days for Math.  We will just do snacks those days, (we have less time) so please if you would, bring some in.  The kids also love gum and mints!  The kids and I would greatly appreciate anything you will bring.  I will keep leftover snacks to use the following days.  This can be a stressful time for some students, but we try to help them relax before they start.  Please make sure your child gets a good nights sleep the night before.  Thanks!  

 Pictures from the field trip to the Fleishman Planetarium. We all enjoyed lunch out on the grass after the Planetarium.  It was a beautiful day to enjoy the outdoors!

 Inside the Planetarium, students watch a video on Earth and the Universe.  They were then able to go and explore the museum exhibits with some hands-on activities.  There was a lot to see and do!

 Mrs. Feest's (our TTS aide that comes in everyday) birthday is this weekend, so we celebrated with some treats and played a energetic game of "Do You Love Your Neighbor?"  Everyone seemed to have a great time!

Science experiments are coming along! We have some real scientists in the class! They have been using their hypothesis they came up with to test different areas of matter. 

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Week of April 9-12th

Coming back from spring break was a challenge to get back into the swing of things.  Kids were wanting to chat and discuss all their fun adventures even after we shared!  It was a busy week with finishing assignments, starting their new books for book club and getting ready for parent conferences. 

Highlights of our week: April 9-12
  • Parent Conferences- Students did an amazing job sharing their learning and successes with parents!  A huge thank you to those who were able to come.  I hope you enjoyed it as much as I did. 
In writing, students finished their wonderful Owner's Manuals that you were able to have your child read to you at parent conference.  Their sense of humor is truly a delight!  We had many chuckles in class over them and hope you were able to also! 
  • This week we will begin writing a persuasive essay after learning about roller coasters and propaganda techniques.  

Students will continue their Book Club books,  practice and review some reading strategies and begin John's Reading Assessments. 
  • We will begin spelling again... I took a little break, but feel it is important to take the time for this and I have an amazing parent who has volunteered to help!!  Thank you Mrs. Gusewelle. Words will come home on Monday in your child's Monday folders, please help them study each night and test will be on Thursday each week.  
We started our science project unit on "Matter" this week, guided by the driving question:  How can we use matter to show physical and chemical changes?  Students have chosen a specific lesson/experiment to do with a partner.  These will be conducted next week, following the scientific method steps.  Students will bring home a list Monday of supplies they will need for their specific experiment which they will need on Wednesday to begin experimenting. 

  • Our rescheduled Field Trip to Fleishmann Planetarium at UNR is this Friday, April 20th.  We will leave from the main school parking lot at 8:15 am and return by 1:30 that afternoon.  We will be going to the planetarium show, a visit to the exhibit hall and our bag lunch on the grounds.  We will utilize the previous permission slips.  Students will need to bring: 
    • $5.00 for the entrance fee
    • Bag lunch
  • Please be aware of 5th grade testing dates and do your best to make sure your child is in attendance on these dates with a good nights sleep and healthy breakfast: (we will have healthy snacks each day)
    • SBAC Science- April 25
    • ACT English Language Arts- May 2
    • ACT Math- May 3
    • SBAC Math- May 9&10
    • SBAC English Language Arts- May 15 & 16
  • I would love a volunteer to set up a Sign-Up Genius for parents to sign up.  (Please email me separately) Please watch for correspondence in the next week. 

Monday, April 9, 2018

Week of March 26-29th

Highlights of the week:

The Egg Drop Challenge was definitely a highlight last week as students worked in partners to design and create a device that would protect their egg from cracking or breaking when dropped from different heights.  Thursday was the final drop and many teams were successful!  Everyone exhibited great ingenuity and an attitude of perseverance.  We learned about engineering and gravity, as well as the importance of testing a product, redesigning and trying again!


In writing, students started writing/creating an Owners Manual of themselves.  The end product will be sure to make you laugh.  They will be shared with parents at Parent Conferences.  Students have loved being creative with this project!

Students were able to choose a book about the Revolutionary War that they will be starting when we come back after Spring Break.  Students were all anxious to get rolling on their new books!  

Important Information:

  • Parent Conferences this Friday, April 13th.  If you have not signed up yet, please do so.  You are welcome to come at any time during the day on Friday from 9:00am-4:00pm, so if you need to just pop in with your child, Ill be there. Students are preparing to share lots of information with you about their year and report cards will be handed out at that time. 
  • Planetarium Field Trip on Friday, April 20th 
    • Meet at the school parking lot at 8:15 am, arriving back around 130 pm.
    • Bring a sack lunch and $5 for entrance fee
    • Please let me know the following information by Monday 4/16
      • Will your child be attending?
      • Will you be driving or will they need a ride? 
      • IF you are driving, are you available to take additional students? How many? 
  • Testing Dates for 5th Grade.  Please have children here, try not to schedule any trips or appointments on these days) 
    • April 25- Science Assessment
    • May 9&10- SBAC Math
    • May 15 & 16- English Language Arts
    • We will have breakfast food and snacks on testing days, if someone would like to coordinate, please let me know.  It would be extremely helpful!
  • Carson River Work Day on May 24th
    • 5th graders will join the high school biology class in a walking field trip to Venturacci Ranch to learn about the water cycle, our watershed, and irrigation with the Carson River Wranglers and Lahontan Conservation District.  It will be a fun day! 

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Week of March 19-22nd

Highlights of the week:

  • In writing we are wrapping up our persuasive opinion writing pieces on Monday.  We added in a counter argument and worked on transitions to help papers flow smoothly. We will share on Monday and hang them in the hall for Mrs. Mackedon and Ms. Tisdale to hear students ideas. 
  • Students did an excellent job on their book culmination projects.  There was a variety of diaries and newspapers where students wrote stories and tried to consider what it would be like in the time of their book. I enjoyed their creativity. 
  • Students have been preparing this week for their research presentations around various topics related to the atmosphere, hydrosphere, geosphere, and biosphere.  On Thursday, we planted our terrariums as a model of these four spheres interacting with one another.  Presentations will be on Monday afternoon. 
  • On Tuesday, we will begin an Egg Drop project.  We will be reading After The Fall, How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again and relate it having a growth mindset to work hard through challenges. The kids will engineer a device to keep "Humpty Dumpty" (an egg) safe when dropping from different heights.  If you have the following items laying around the house or have chickens and you would like to donate, the kids will be grateful because they will be able to "practice" their drops a few more times than 2.  We need: EGGS, toilet paper rolls (empty), pipe cleaners, Popsicle sticks, Styrofoam cups, or cotton balls. Students will be given a said amount of supplies and be able to test on Tuesday and Wednesday with the final drop being Thursday afternoon. 

Important Information:
  • Please try and establish a plan with your child to get their math homework signed off each night as well as bring their parent journal and weekly folder with signed reading log back to school on Monday.  Students are having to attend study hall which takes class time away and they are missing important information. They will now have to stay in at lunch and complete math facts on paper. This is their responsibility, but working with them to come up with a plan would be helpful. 
  • Next week students will be working on preparing for our upcoming Parent Conferences on April 13th.  They will be leading the conference as they share their report card, a portfolio of work and some learning goals.  Sign-Up Genius notification will be sent out in the next few days. Please sign up for a time slot or contact me if needed. 
  • Our Planetarium field trip to UNR will be on Friday, April 20th.  As was previously scheduled, we will meet at the school around 8:15 am and carpool for the 10 am showing, followed by a tour through the exhibition hall and a sack lunch on the grounds.  We plan to return around 1:30 pm.  Please let me know ASAP if your child still plans to attend (we will keep the same permission slips previously signed, but I need to know if there are any who plan to go this time who weren't able to before or vice versa). 
  • We will need drivers for that day, so if you were planning on transporting students previously, please let me know if you are still able to do so.  
  •   Only one week until Spring Break!  Spring is definitely in the air, please remind your kids to have their best behavior.  Thank you! Have a wonderful rest of your weekend.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Week of March 12-15

Highlights of our week:

In writing, students have continued working on their opinion writing pieces.  They are writing about suggestions for changes in our school.  Students have finished their rough drafts and have begun the revising process.

Students will be presenting their end of the book culmination projects from book clubs on Monday and Tuesday.  They chose from a variety of newspaper articles and diaries.  I'm excited to see their end product.

Science has been full of fun as we explored the layers of the earth with a strawberry layered dessert, attempted to put the continents together to create Pangea and had some discussion on tectonic plates.  Students also began working in groups to gain further understanding about the 4 spheres- biosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and geosphere and how they interact together.

  • Thank you so much to those of you who brought in the supplies needed for terrariums.  We should have the rest of the supplies in by Thursday and will build them then.  If you did not send supplies in next week, please do so by Wednesday.  We need a large mouth jar or plastic 2 liter bottle, a small plant that will fit inside, and some small pebbles that can be gathered from outside. 
  • Report cards will not be sent home prior to Parent Conferences.  Parent Conferences will be student led and held on Friday April 13th and you will receive report cards at that time. 
  • Our planetarium field trip is scheduled for April 20th.  Please check your schedules and I will get a solid count in a couple of weeks.
  • Spring Break is the first week of April.  We only have a couple of weeks until then!  

Saturday, March 10, 2018

Week of March 5-8

Another successful week in Room 5 is over!  Kids are entertaining, excited, wonderful and full of curiosity!

In writing, we are continuing with the process of our opinion/persuasive piece.  Students chose a topic last week and started researching to back up their opinions. Topics students chose include: all classrooms should have class pets, no uniforms, more playground equipment and a few others.  I'm excited to see their final products.

This week all Book Clubs will be finishing their books and having their final meetings.  Some students took their Book Clubs seriously and worked hard to dig deeper in the book and use that to enhance and give insight in their meetings, while others didn't go the extra mile and kept it surface level.  This has been an excellent learning tool for all of us.  They will begin a culmination project of their books this week and am hoping to be done by Monday of next week to begin our next set of novels.  Students will have the choice between doing a newspaper, storyboard, timeline, diary or character portrayal of their novel.

In projects, we continued with our science unit with exploration of shadows.  Students measured their shadows throughout the day on Monday, created a bar graph and reflected on reasons why their shadows changed.  We gained a better understanding of stars and constellations and finished the week with researching "I wonder..." statements.  Over the past few weeks, students have posted "I wonder..." questions.  This week, they chose one and worked independently to explore answers to their questions. We began student presentations on Thursday and will continue throughout the week.  We will begin our study of Earth's Systems on Monday by learning about the hydrosphere, geosphere, biosphere, and atmosphere.

  • We took a few brain breaks with GoNoodle songs that the kids enjoyed dancing and getting some energy out. 
  • Science Project supplies needed by THIS THURSDAY!  Please send in the following items with your by this Thursday:   jar (mason or sauce/pickle jar size, wide mouth) or 2 liter plastic bottle (clear if possible), a small plant for a terrarium, bag of small rocks/ pebbles.
  • Second trimester ended on Thursday.  Parent Teacher conferences will be held on Friday, April 13th. The conferences will be student led. 
  • Planetarium Field Trip to Reno is rescheduled for Friday, April 20th at 10:00 am. More information will be sent out a few weeks prior to the date.  
  • A little side note:  Your kids are so awesome!! Love these kids! 

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Week of February 26- March 1

Highlights of the Week: 

  • Writing- students began working on opinion writing last week.  We will be brainstorming various topics about school for which they have an opinion and we will begin these next week. 
  • Reading Book Clubs have been ongoing.  Some of the groups meetings have had to be postponed due to work not getting done or kids out because of sickness.  Please note that if students do not spend enough time on their assignments in class, they are encouraged to take it home and do for homework instead of their 20 minutes of reading.  We are working hard to be responsible and prepared for their meetings.  We will have our final meetings for their Book Clubs in the next week, hopefully!  After their final meeting, they will begin working on a culmination project about their book. 
  • We are continuing our unit in Earth Sciences with an introduction to the driving question: How do ur shadows change throughout the day?  We have learned about what causes seasons and the revolution of the Sun.  We were able to explore space through Google Expeditions on Thursday.  We also have conducted experiments around gravity, seasons, an eclipse, day and night, phases of the moon and gazing at stars. 

Students have endured various assessments in preparation for 2nd trimester report cards.  They have not been overjoyed, but as a whole are doing well. We will have a few more this week and I am pulling students in small groups to review the concepts missed and re-take assessments.  Report cards will be sent home the middle of March. 

  • Planetarium Field Trip has been rescheduled for Friday, April 20th.  We will send out reminders as we get closer to the date. 
  • Human Growth and Development will begin this Thursday with Mr. Lenon teaching the boys and Nurse Terry teaching the girls.  Students who are not participating will have study hall time. 
  • Please feel free to contact me with an questions.  Your children are a true joy!  

Week of April 16-19th

Highlights of the week:  Students have been working hard in all subjects! We had a great time on the field trip to the Planetarium.  Than...