Friday, 24 March 2017

Dear Families,

Happy Spring!  It was fabulous seeing my students this week, I had missed them tremendously! I hope you enjoyed your March Break with them.  I heard so many neat experiences!  Now we're back to our regular routines and regimes, I bet as a parent you're delighted by this too :-)  As you'll see and read below, it was as busy and productive week of learning for us all!

Elephants Thoughts Opportunity:  
On Monday, we had the pleasure of having a scientist from Elephant Thoughts come to our school to share his passion and knowledge with us. This program is an excellent hands-on learning opportunity for students. I have already had several registrations come in which is exciting as I know participants will have fun with this meaningful program!

Over the past few weeks, we have been learning about identifying and sorting 2-D shapes and 3-D figures by their geometric properties such as faces, edges, vertices, and by their angles (acute, obtuse, right, and straight).  We also took time to create 3-D solids from nets to further enhance our understanding.  

If your child hasn't already completed all his or her course work from this unit that I have assigned on Mathletics, please have them do so over the weekend.  I use their results on this as part of their assessment and evaluation. They enjoy using this online program, so it doesn't seem like 'homework.'
Here's the handy link to the site:

Art in the Local Library:
Have you had the opportunity to visit the Collingwood local library to admire and celebrate your child's Magic of Children's art entry?!  If not, you may wish to over the weekend :)  It will continue to be displayed until mid April.  Each entry has been carefully put up with specific feedback from the judges.  You don't want to miss out as there are other amazing pieces from schools around our area to check out! 

We had the pleasure of having Ms. Stewart visit our classroom yesterday and even today to continue working on our art project on Canadian Birds.  They are turning out amazing!!  Students are loving their creations and putting their personal touches on their pieces that I'm sure you'll love too at the Art Expo in May!  Ms. Stewart, we can't thank you enough for all your time, energy, and expertise!  You are an inspiration to us!!  Thank you, thank YOU!!

Procedural Writing:  
Students have been doing several forms of writing over the school year, namely Recounts, Non-Fiction Reports, and Letters.  This week, I introduced Procedural Writing which focuses on How to do or Make Something.  I have posted a picture below of the anchor chart we use in class to help us remember the parts of a procedure.  See if your child can state them for you without peaking at the picture ;)  If they share all 5 parts, then WOW, they've really locked this information into their "hippocampus" (a brain helper which is referred to as the 'memory saver') already!!

In gym, I have introduced a fitness unit that teaches children the proper skills and safety tips to perform various exercises.  See picture below and ask your child about this and how we've been utilizing these in gym classes.

Also, as stated in the agenda yesterday, please have your child share his or her google doc. of the procedure they completed during my modelled lesson.  I will be doing more examples with them, but then they will get the opportunity to complete a procedural writing piece on their own to demonstrate their learning with me! 

Brain Breakfast:
Each day, when students enter the classroom they open their brain breakfast folders and complete 5 daily math questions.  These are designed to either reinforce or introduce new concepts in the area of mathematics such as patterning & algebra, number sense, geometry & spatial sense, measurement, and data management.  Some of these can be quite challenging!  

Students are expected to complete these independently, but then we always meet together to consolidate (share) their strategies they used to complete their answers and demonstrate their thinking.  It's an excellent opportunity for them also to use teacher feedback to help 'bump up' their work to further communicate their understanding.  

In math, I am not solely assessing if your child gets a question right or wrong, rather there is a greater emphasis on the mathematical processes they used to get to their answer.  Throughout the year, I have highly encouraged students to use my feedback, this will continue to be a focus.  

Just a gentle reminder that your child brings home their completed pages for you on Monday evenings, and I know they're excited to go over their work with you and celebrate their new learnings!  I think you'll be delighted to hear what they have to share!  Thank you in advance for always supporting your child.  I know it means a lot to them!  

World Water Day:
On Wednesday, it was world water day which we all know should be EVERYDAY!  But, we took some time to think about and celebrate drinking water to help our bodies stay hydrated and energized! Check out our enthusiasm!  Gulp, gulp, gulp!

Social Studies Projects:
Thank you to all the students who shared their Province & Territory projects this week!  Wow, all your hard work has paid off and your peers learned some fascinating new information from you about Canada.  This was really helpful for the Grade 3's as well as they will have some knowledge going into next year and be inspired to create a project that is organized, clear, and appealing for an audience.  Way to go Grade 4's!

Hannah W.:
Welcome back, Hannah!  We missed you and are delighted you're back from your Cayman Island trip with your family :)  Thank you so much for the lovely gifts you shared with your peers. Your act of kindness is cherished and I know your friends will keep their shells in a safe place! Mmm, I gobbled up the sweet treat you gave me!  Thank you :)  Also, it was a joy to read your writing about some of your adventures!  Swimming with sting rays?!  Amazing!!

Growth Mindset:

Miss Gill

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