posted Dec 9, 2014, 6:45 AM by Jesse Kohls

Kindergarten:  This week in kindergarten, we will continue our gingerbread man unit and begin talking about holiday traditions.  In math, we are focusing on recognizing and sequencing numbers in the teens while also being introduced to the concept of addition.  We are even learning the symbols that allow us to write number sentences!  In writing, we are working on creating amazing beginnings to our narratives and are using a partner to answer reader questions.  In reading, we are recognizing and creating rhyming pairs and have started using our knowledge of ending sounds to help us while changing the first consonant in cvc words to create new ones.  In addition to everything else, we have added two new words to our word wall, the words "to" and "he"!  


1st grade:  Students continue to work really hard on writing an "informational" or a teaching book on many subjects.  We are learning how to use features such as; comparisons, descriptive words, examples, arrows and zoom-ins to teach our readers and answer their questions.

Most classes are beginning "The Grinch" thematic unit.  We will unlock adjectives that describe the Grinch before and after his discovering of the true meaning of Christmas.  First graders will discuss the author's purpose for writing The Grinch.  We will discuss connections that we have with the story - text to self, text to text and text to world connections.

 In math, students will continue to practice telling time to the hour and half hour, clock parts, doubles, and begin measurement.  Some classes have made double mints that are hanging from the ceilings!


2nd grade:  We have had another busy week in second grade. In math we have been working on a geometry unit. There is a lot of vocabulary for the students to learn but they are doing a great job. We have discussed the faces, edges and vertices of 3D shapes. We introduced the concept of area by making quilts and integrating literature into our math lesson.

In reading we have continued to focus on main idea and details. We have also continued to work on context clues to help understand unknown words. In our guided reading groups we are focusing on nonfiction books about many different countries.

In writing we are wrapping up writing All About Books this week and we are moving into scientific writings integrated into our force and motion science lessons. The students are going to enjoy all that we have planned for them in this next unit.

In ELA and spelling the students have been working on contractions. This can be a challenging skill and may need a lot of practice.


3rd grade:  In Guided Reading, students are continuing to work with information texts. Many groups are reading science books involving our new unit on energy. Some of the standards covered with informational text include fluency and decoding, asking and answering questions, and using text features.

Reading informational texts during Guided Reading also helps students with their writing this quarter, which is also informational text. They have begun their research by taking notes from their books and are now organizing the information into chapters. We will also be working on our table of contents and using transitional words to connect our information together.

Language this week finds us continuing work with verbs. We will be focusing on irregular verbs this week.

Our math unit on multiplication finds the students working on patterns, and properties. The third graders will be focusing in on the associative, commutative, and distributive properties this week. We will also be introducing division by having students make equal groups given various amounts of objects. Students will also be practicing fact fluency, playing multiplication games with partners, and working in small groups with the teacher to help reinforce concepts, as well as challenge students to extend their thinking.

Last week we completed our unit on government in social studies with a summative assessment. This week we will begin our new science unit on energy. Students will be exploring various energy sources such as wind, electrical, heat, and magnetic.



4th grade:  Math - Students continue to work on addition, subtraction, and multiplication strategies, including using arrays, drawing pictures, the distributive property and traditional methods as well. They are exploring the relationship between multiplication and division and are using websites such as Khan Academy for tutorials and application practice.

Reading - This week students will be comparing and contrasting point of view from which different stories are narrated, including the difference between first and third person narrations. We are also discussing what it means to follow inner conversation - listening to voices in your head while reading and leaving “tracks” of our thinking. Students continue to read independently at their level as well, exploring many great authors, genres and book series.

Social Studies - History continues to be the theme for the quarter. We are reading and learning about the Historic Native Americans; the six historic tribes, their cultures, customs, leaders etc. This leads into the conflicts that come about from European settlers such as the Colonists and French explorers. We can’t wait to study the French and Indian War! Some classes are up to the Revolutionary War.

Science - Fourth graders are investigating traces of the past; trace fossils and bone/animal fossils, whole organisms that are preserved with its bones and teeth. Classes are discussing changes in environments that lead to animals becoming endangered or even extinction!

Writing - Students are exploring opinions! They will be creating written pieces on topics or texts supporting a point of view with reasons and information. This week we’ll be focusing on choosing a topic of interest (what are we experts about?) and stating the opinion clearly.



Music: Fourth grade students are working on their Native American Music unit.  We are learning about different tribes from all over the United States.  Each class is learning about a different tribe’s music and dance culture.  Each class will also learn how to sing and perform a song from their tribe.  During the last week of school before break, all the 4th grade classes will be getting together to share what they have been learning about the different Native American tribes.  We will have a fun hour of singing and dancing all the different songs we have learned.

Media Center:  Fourth grade students are continuing their unit on how nonfiction books are arranged on the book shelves, what call numbers are for their favorite subjects and how the online card catalog works. We will be using a web site called Kahoot to practice recognizing what subjects can be found in the ten categories of the Dewey Decimal System.  We will also be trying to fit in a Holiday story or two before winter break!

Art:  Fourth-graders this week in art are finishing cardinals in the snow.  This is a torn paper crayon resist watercolor painting.   Some classes are completing lettering projects adding Christmas color with markers.  This week we are also making Christmas cards and ornaments.  Fourth graders helped to complete our two snowmen in the lobby on display.

Physical Education:  We are finishing up our scooter hockey unit.  Our focus this week is spacing on the floor.  We are trying to create good spacing so we can have passing lanes on the offensive side of the floor.  We have discussed/viewed a couple examples of how this looks.  We have talked about how soccer and hockey are very similar in offensive strategies.  The students have learned how long hockey has been played.  We discussed what part of the world (Rome and Greece) hockey was invented and that the original hockey type game was not played on ice but was played on a soccer field (field hockey).