Welcome Back - January 8, 2021

Hello everyone!

We hope you had a peaceful and relaxing holiday season and were able to make some special family memories together, despite all of the challenges.  We wanted to give you some information a little sooner than our usual Sunday this week.

Schedule:  After using our December schedule, we decided that it is more effective to have the students do problem solving in smaller groups.  So we are going back to doing our problem solving zooms one team at a time, with the students coming every other week.  That is the only change we’ve made to our schedule, and barring any complications or unforeseen circumstances, this should be the schedule we stick with for awhile.  Here’s a link to a copy.  Schedule It is also posted in the stream in Google Classroom, and in the Resources folder, and on Schoology.  

And just a reminder, Monday is a Pupil-Free Day.  So us teachers will be meeting, but students don’t come back to school until Tuesday, so we’ll see everyone at 9 am on Tuesday.  

January Pick Up:  Pending any district notifications, we are planning to have a materials pick up on January 22nd from 2:30 - 3:30.  We finally have all of the math manipulative kits from our Donors Choose project, so we will be passing those out (see note below), along with materials that will be needed for assignments and projects that we’ll be doing later.  We will be using these manipulatives quite a bit in math zooms, so it’s going to be really important that your child have access to them.  Please let us know if you can’t make it and will need to make an alternative arrangement, especially since we don’t know if the office will be open again yet.  Pickup will be contactless again, and no book cart will be available for the students, so using our book request form will be the best way for your child to get new books.  Please help them gather up the books that have been read and return them to us in the bag you have now, along with any of the geometry work that wasn’t turned in at the December pick up.

We are very excited about the manipulative kits and want to be sure we’re going to be able to have students use them for years to come, so we are asking everyone to sign a form (students too), agreeing to take good care of the materials and return all of them at the end of the year, and to pay to replace anything that is lost.  It is a google form, so you don’t need to download or print anything.  Form

Parent Meeting: We will be having a parent meeting on Wednesday, January 20th from 3 - 3:30 so we can tell you about our plans for the next chunk of time, check in about starting back up, and answer any questions you might have.  

Coming up Next Week:

Read Aloud: To go along with our learning about Native Americans, we are going to be reading Indian No More starting on Thursday.  Tuesday and Wednesday we will be doing some recommended introductory activities and reading to go along with the book.  We know many students like to follow along as we read in their own copy, but this book is out of print currently, so very hard / expensive to get (we’re reading it from an e-book), so don’t worry about getting one for your child.

Reading:  Our reading and writing are going to support each other for the next few weeks.  This week and next we will be focusing on story maps - identifying and mapping the introduction, rising action, conflict, climax, falling action, resolution, character, and setting in books that we will be reading.  We will be doing this together in zooms and asking students to do a couple independently as well.

Writing:  We are starting the process of having the students write their own narrative stories, giving them the choice of writing an illustrated story, or making it more of a picture book, or a graphic novel.  We will be spending a few weeks in preparatory learning and activities to support them being able to do this writing.  This week we will be writing 6 sentence stories that have the main elements of a story in them, both as a group, and then independently.

Math: Ms. Denise will be spending a couple of weeks focusing on various types of graphs, to give us time to make sure everyone has the bag of manipulatives before we start fractions.  Ms. Lauren will be starting work on telling time.  We will be continuing to look at multiplication and algebraic thinking as well.

Science:  Our next step in learning about structures is going to be learning about one of the important forces acting on them - gravity.  

Social Studies: Over the next few weeks, we will be continuing to learn about Native Americans, working backwards from Native American life today to their lives in the past, eventually coming to focus on California tribes.

Expiration Date: 
Jul 31