Early morning hikers

 

 Several students got up early and went on a hike. 

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Camp Namanu Day One 

Our first half day at camp was spent learning the lay of the land and the rules of the road. We met Camp counselors and had a great meal of chil,i cornbread, and baked potatoes. The best part for a lot of the kids was the brownie dessert. We did field studies and interest groups in the afternoon. The day ended with campfire.

   

                 

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Class Notes for April 20-24, 2015

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I am writing this Sunday night before we head off to Camp Namanu in the morning. We are looking forward to decent weather for most of our time there. I will try to post pictures and updates on the class blog, but I am told cell phone coverage is sketchy up there. This is going to be a lot of fun and with OMSI running the academic side of things, you know there will be a lot of good solid learning going on.

We are still planning on going down to Reed College for most of the day on Monday, April 27 for a tour of the campus including a chemistry and biology lab, plus the Reed nuclear reactor. We have three parents signed up so far, but we would love to have more come if possible. Go to tinyurl.com/reedtour to sign up.

On Tuesday, April 28, we will take the math portion of the Smarter Balanced test.

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Class Notes for April 13-17, 2015

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It’s almost here! “It” being OMSI Science Camp at Camp Namanu next Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, April 20, 21, and 23. The kids are really looking forward to this experience and so am I. It’s interesting that during my first year of teaching at Lane (before it was a middle school), I took my 6th-grade class to Outdoor School. Those students are now 42 or 43 years old! It can be a very strong bonding experience for all participants.

In terms of getting ready for camp, keep going back to the list of supplies that came home with the medical forms last week. Also pay attention to the list of items that are not to be sent along, like electronic devices. If your child absolutely needs to contact you, we can arrange that with the landline at the lodge. The three days are jam-packed with activities and should zip by faster than anyone wants them to.

I can’t stress enough to send appropriate clothing and footwear. As my cycling buddies tell me, “There is no bad weather, only bad clothing.” Your child’s chances of enjoying Camp will be increase greatly if he/she is dressed for the possible wet/cold weather that an Oregon spring can throw our way. The camp itself is at about 1,000 ft. above sea level, so it could be a little colder than Portland is.

Put on your walking shoes and join us for our Reed College field trip on Monday, April 27. This field trip is sponsored by the Science Outreach folks down at Reed. They will show us some chemistry demonstrations, we’ll get a tour of the nuclear reactor, check out some of the biology labs, and get a campus and dorm tour. We will leave the school at 9:00 a.m. and return after eating lunch on the campus. We should be back to Lewis around 1:30. Once again, chaperones are needed for this trip.

You can sign up for this field trip at tinyurl.com/reedtrips. Note that we have cancelled/postponed the April 21 Cooley Gallery trip due to a conflict with Science Camp.

The Math portion of the Smarter Balanced test will be on Tuesday, April 28. Speaking of tests, I was proud of our group during the language arts portion of the Smarter Balanced test last week. Our class worked hard and put in good effort through what ended up being a fairly long time for most of the kids. We will not know the results of any of these tests until at least the end of the school (and it may be after school is out). As soon as I get results, I will get them to you.

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Class Notes for April 6-10, 2015

OMSI Science Camp is approaching quickly. April 20, 21, and 22 will be here before you know it! Please check over the list of suggested items to bring and start setting them aside (and also note the items that they don’t want) at your house. If you need another copy of the list, let me know and I’ll send one your way. We will be at Camp Namanu near the Sandy River on 550 acres of forest land. Thanks to everybody who turned in paperwork promptly. I am really looking forward to taking the kids to Camp. It should be a fun learning experience for all.

Put on your walking shoes and join us for our Reed College field trip on Monday, April 27. This field trip is sponsored by the Science Outreach folks down at Reed. They will show us some chemistry demonstrations, we’ll get a tour of the nuclear reactor, check out some of the biology labs, and get a campus and dorm tour. We will leave the school at 9:00 a.m. and return after eating lunch on the campus. We should be back to Lewis around 1:30. Once again, chaperones are needed for this trip.

You can sign up for this field trip at tinyurl.com/reedtrips. Note that we have cancelled/postponed the April 21 Cooley Gallery trip due to a conflict with Science Camp.

 

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Class Notes for March 30-April 3, 2015

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I hope everybody had a good Spring Break. It will be good to get back in the swing of things. We’re in the home stretch and we have a lot to accomplish before the end of the year. I am ready to hit the ground running for these next couple of months.

Volunteers are needed for our walking field trip on the morning of Tuesday, April 21 to Reed College’s Cooley Gallery to look investigate the work of photographer Emil Otto Hoppé, an important figure in portrait photography in the early- to mid-20th century. Education Outreach Coordinator Gregory MacNaughton will visit our class a day before we go to Reed to give us a better understanding of what we will see. It’s a great way to spend the day with some very cool kids and see some amazing photography.

Put on your walking shoes and join us as we have another Reed College field trip on Monday, April 27. This field trip is sponsored by the Science Outreach folks down at Reed. They will show us some chemistry demonstrations, we’ll get a tour of the nuclear reactor, check out some of the biology labs, and get a campus and dorm tour. We will leave the school at 9:00 a.m. and return after eating lunch on the campus. We should be back to Lewis around 1:30. Once again, chaperones are needed for this trip.

You can sign up for one or both of these field trips at tinyurl.com/reedtrips.

As mentioned in the last class notes, Smarter Balanced Assessments will be administered in April. Room 24 students will take the English Language Arts (ELA) test on Monday, April 6. I wanted to point out again that there is a Portland Council PTA parents’ forum on testing scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 1st at Cleveland High School. No fooling.:)

Make sure you have May 11-13 on your family calendar for Science Camp at Camp Magruder on the coast. Students will leave the morning of Monday, May 11 and return the afternoon of Wednesday, May 13. I am really looking forward to this event. More information will be coming home in the next few weeks to help you and your child prepare for the trip.

 

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Class Notes for March 16-20, 2015

 

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The play’s the thing this week at Lewis School. Please consider attending the school’s production of “Jack and the Three Sillies” on Thursday and Friday nights at 6:30. Four of our Room 24 students are involved in the play and it promises to be a fun family experience for all ages. Tickets are available online at tinyurl.com/lewisplay2015.

We are nearing the end of our unit on division and fractions. I would like to see as many students as possible finish the Fractions section of Front Row Math. The link is on the sidebar of the class homepage. We will do some review of the unit after spring break, finish the last couple of lessons, the take the post assessment.

Speaking of taking tests after spring break, I wanted to let you know that third, fourth, and fifth graders will begin several weeks of federally-mandated reading and math tests from the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. Testing will take place across the school week, with reading tests taking place during one week and math tests taking place the following week.  All testing will take place before lunch.

Rather than seeing the test as a one-time, high stress event, I will try to fold the experience into existing classroom knowledge. During the first week after spring break, I will talk with the kids about different types of genres in reading, establishing “the test” as a unique type of genre. We will talk about how good readers change their reading strategies to match the genre. This emphasis on strategies has been and will continue to be an important part of our classroom throughout the year.

We will look at and practice taking Smarter Balanced tests. This is a very different test from the former OAKS test. Here is a link to some practice questions: smarterbalanced.org/practice-test. If you have any questions about the test, do not hesitate to ask. Also, a recent Lewis Elementary School News (eepurl.com/bgLS9L) mentioned a Portland Council PTA parents’ forum on testing scheduled for 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 1st at Cleveland High School.

Have a great spring break!

 

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