Class Notes for February 23-27, 2015

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The Lewis Family Dance on Friday night was a great success! It’s so much fun to play music while people are dancing their hearts out. It’s definitely one of the high points of the year for me. To top it off, over $500 was raised for the Science Camp scholarship fund. Win-win!

These next four weeks before Spring Break are the longest uninterrupted stretch of time during the year and are a good opportunity for students to practice getting ready for middle school. If your child is not already taking responsibility for starting, working on, and completing homework without being reminded, now is a good time to give it a try. By all means help if your child asks for it, but let them initiate the help session. It’s never too early to foster good study habits.

The Colonial simulation is taking longer than planned, but there’s some good learning going on. Several of the fates the “colonists” have endured really did happen to the early settlers along the Atlantic coast, including snowstorms like that are going on back east right now.

Unit Four in math is going well. We are learning ways to approach division problems by taking the problem apart and constructing a multiplication menu by thinking about how many (for example) groups of 12 there are in 252 or how many groups of 12 it takes to build up to 252.

We have started working with Ms. Kathleen in the Learning Garden. Half of the class goes with Ms. Kathleen while the other half is reading or writing. We do this on Thursdays, so appropriate clothing, especially shoes, is important.

In spelling, some students have found it helpful to take a practice test on Thursday afternoon so they know which words to work on. We will be focusing on Greek and Latin roots starting next week. Knowing the etymology of words is a powerful vocabulary booster.

There are some interesting stories being written during writing time. The most recent prompt was to write about a squirrel who has designs on world domination. Students have taken off and are running with this one.

Other upcoming events include a trip to downtown Portland on Wednesday, March 11 to attend a concert by the Portland Youth Philharmonic. I’ll send out more info as we get closer, but I know that we will need at least two chaperones to help out.

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About Mr. Colvin

I'm a retired elementary teacher (classroom and music) who taught at Lewis and Woodmere elementary schools in SE Portland. I like to teach, play guitar, take photos, and ride my bike.
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