Room 3 Classroom Notes – June 9, 2015

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Second Grade- here we come! I can’t believe it is the last week of school. Spring seemed to fly by and Mother Nature seems to have brought the summer heat early. We have been so busy with writing projects, Farm building, Art Night, field trips, drama, gardening, and so many other things – it all feels like a whirlwind. I was looking back through pictures and work samples from the year and I am amazed at how much each of the kids have grown. It has truly been a special year for me. Thank you for sharing your fantastic kids with me. I know I’ll miss them this summer and really look forward to seeing them next Fall in the hallways and lunchroom, and on the playground.

Our week looks like this: We are finishing up our animal projects early in the week, then we will be doing some reflecting on our year together, enjoying our classroom community, spending time with our buddy class, participating in 5th grade graduation, and finishing up with a Summer Birthday Bash/End of Year party. On Wednesday morning (9:30 – 11:00) we will be walking to Berkeley Park with our buddy class for a final meet up. We will be playing games and enjoying our snacks there.

Looking back, Thanks to our awesome parent chaperones our zoo trip was a great success! They did a fabulous job touring groups through the zoo on a hot day. I can’t thank them (you!) enough! All of the kids raved about how awesome their group was – and all of them did a fantastic job on their zoo scavenger hunt. Bravo!

Again, it has been a fabulous year for me. This is such an awesome group of kids. It was a pleasure to spend my days teaching, learning, playing, and just enjoying their great sense of humor and wonder. I wish everyone a wonderful Summer full of fun and wonder. Don’t forget to keep up with your daily reading, a bit of writing, and lots of games to keep up your math skills!

Cheers!

Ms. Sarah

Classroom Notes – June 2, 2015

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This week is busy! Thursday afternoon is our annual Field Day. All of the classes will be rotating through a variety of fun outdoor activities. Please help your child dress appropriately for the weather. Keep in mind that there will probably be water involved in some of our activities. Ms. Layman and her helpers always do a great job with this event. Please check with her if you’d like to volunteer to help out with the fun!

On Friday we will be boarding the bus at 9:15 to head to the Oregon Zoo. Students will explore the zoo in small groups with their chaperone, keeping a look out for animals with various attributes – wings, beaks, feathers, fur, scales, etc… It should be a fantastic time. Please remember to have your child dress appropriately for the weather and to pack their lunch in a paper bag that can be tossed. The chaperones will be carrying all of the lunches and they need to fit it all in a backpack!

Back in the classroom, we released our last butterfly on Monday. The kiddos loved watching the changes that occurred over the last few weeks. It is truly an amazing thing to watch. Now if our mealworms would finish up their metamorphosis we can wrap our our science unit on insect life cycles!

We had a great time with Ms. Tori on our last visit to the library. We played a fun game in which we got to be creative storytellers together. Ms. Tori also told us about the public library’s Summer Reading Program. Game Cards will come home on the last day of school. This is a great way to keep your child reading over the summer. I hope everyone participates!

We are learning the basics of how to write nonfiction paragraphs. The kids are using this form to write about their animal. This project will definitely keep us busy until the end of school!

Finally, next Wednesday we will be going on a Walking Field Trip to Berkeley Park with our Buddy Class from 9:15 – 11:00 a.m. Then, later that afternoon we will be having a Summer Birthday’s party to honor our friends with summer birthdays. Let me know if you’d like to contribute to the birthday treats.

Phew! Have a great week!

-Sarah Jamesbarry

Classroom Notes – May 26, 2015

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It’s hard to believe that there are only three weeks left in the school year, but the weather is definitely feeling like Summer. I hope our classroom volunteers and field trip chaperones are able to stop by for breakfast this Friday at the Volunteer Breakfast. Your help and support are so important to us. It means a lot to the kids and we really can’t do it without your help! I hope to see you there!

Last Friday we had a wonderful time with our third grade buddies. First we read them our How To books and then they shared Sphero, a new programable robot, with us. We had great fun controlling them using ipads. It was fun way to end the busy week. I’m sure a few of you have already had requests for a Sphero of their own.

Our insects are completing their life cycle changes. We have a few mealworm pupa and several darkling beetles from our mealworms, and anxiously await our butterflies. We will observe them for a few days and then let them go in our butterfly garden. Thanks to Saule and August for bringing in insects they found in their own yards for us to observe last week.

In math, we continue to work on our farms – planning, constructing, and paying for our animals and their pens. We will be adding our chickens and horses this week, and then finish up by adding crops and gardens.

Finally, we are just getting started on our last writing piece. On Tuesday each of the kids chose an animal to research. We will now start looking for facts as we read about our animals. We will looks for facts that fit into four categories – description, life cycle, habitat, and other interesting facts. The kids will learn how to take notes and then put it all together into paragraphs. It should be an exciting project!

Cheers!

Classroom Notes – May 20, 2015

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A permission slip for our last field trip of the year came home on Monday. This field trip requires lots of parent chaperones! We will spend the day exploring the Oregon Zoo. Please let me know if you are able to help out – it should be a fabulous time!

Our butterflies went into their “J” over the weekend and have moved into the pupa stage. The chrysalis’ are forming. We should have butterflies within the next week! We are observing, learning vocabulary, and thinking about insect roles in the world and how they are useful. We are still waiting patiently to see what will happen next with our mealworms…

The kids are finishing up their How To writing pieces. They have done a fantastic job with this genre. They’ve done a great job hooking their readers and including tips for the reader on how to be successful at their “How To.” We will be getting ready to work on our last big writing project – an animal research report. Hopefully we’ll be able to see many of our animals at the zoo on June 5th.

Our farms continue to grow. Last week we added goats and sheep. This week we will add some more animals, update our maps, and do some spending comparisons. Students will add up how much was spent on animals and land and then compare it to see which animal cost them the most.

Cheers!

Ms. Sarah

Classroom Notes- May 12, 2015

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Art Night was a great success. Our class had a great turn out and impressive docents. Bravo! I hope you all enjoyed your Mother’s Day surprise – the kids were very excited to share those with you…so much so that they didn’t want them displayed at Art Night, but they were just too beautiful to not share with our greater community.

Room 3 will be full of busy bees as we move into our last month of school. We have begun our Farm unit, started our Drama residency, and are kicking our insect studies into high gear. We will be working on some more nonfiction writing, as well as continue our literacy work.

Our drama residency has started and will run for 2 weeks. Each morning the split class works on drama games with our resident artists. They came back this morning with lots to tell about the mirror game. Ask them about it!

Our math Farm unit has started with great success. These kiddos are doing an amazing job laying out their farm pieces, paying for them, and helping each other as needed. We will begin adding animals later this week as well as try our hand at making a map of our farms by transferring the information onto a coordinate plane. This gives us a chance to talk more about the elements and uses of a map.

Finally, our insect unit will be picking up with the introduction of a new insect larva this week. We will now have two larvae to observe. We will begin learning more about insect life cycles, metamorphosis, insect body parts, and some of the ways insects protect themselves to name a few things we’ll be covering in the coming weeks.

Cheers,

Ms Sarah

Classroom Notes – May 6, 2015

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Art Night is here! We have been working on our projects over the last few months and are excited to share them on Thursday night. I hope to see you there!

This week we are reading about simple machines. We have learned about 4 kinds in particular including the lever, pulley, inclined planes, and wheels and axles. We are on the lookout for different kinds of simple machines that we use in our lives. We brainstormed many examples of simple machines and tools, and then found examples of each kind in our text.

Our mealworms have molted several times and continue to grow. We are waiting to see what happens next. It could be a few more weeks so in the meantime we will continue to observe and care for the critters. We have a new insect arriving later this week giving us another example of the insect life cycle to observe.

We are finishing up our geometric shapes unit and preparing to start our final math unit – The Farm; Money, Place Value, and Mapping. This is a thematic unit in which students will build a map of a farm including roads, crops and fields, a house, barn, fences, animals, and much more. This should be a great way to wrap up our year in math!

Cheers!

Ms Sarah