Sunday, October 25, 2009

Things That Go, And Go, And Go!

Chugga, Chugga Choo, Choo!! The Room 108 Team keeps on the train through the end of October and whirlwind of action happening all around us! Last week was a busy one with conferences, book fair, and two half days of school. On Friday, many students participated in the New Era sponsored Wear Your Cap to School Day that raised money for the Caps For Kids foundation. Also on Friday we were all treated to an Art Appreciation lesson on Alexander "Sandy" Calder. The children were shown some superior pieces of Sandy's work and focused on his most popular creation, the mobile. Students were then given an opportunity to build their own fall inspired mobiles with sticks and leaves from trees, along with many other building items such as paper clips, pipe cleaners, and chop sticks.

Thanks to all the parents for all you did this week! Parent/teacher conferences ran very smoothly because of the punctuality and participation from those of you that were able to make it. The book fair was also a great success and students were thrilled to share book purchases with all their classmates! The art appreciation moms did an excellent job in promoting the work of Sandy Calder and helping children make inspired and very original mobiles!

This Friday, October 30th is another great chance to get involved in the classroom because we are having a Halloween Celebration! In addition, Mann is having an All-School Halloween Parade! It should be quite the costuming masquerade! Parents are encouraged to help out with the classroom party and attend the parade around the school block.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Unit 3 Underway

Hey Readers! With parent teacher conferences just around the corner, Unit 2 has been completed and Unit 3 in reading and math is underway. The challenge with the early months of first grade is that no one skill is taught to mastery meaning skills are merely introduced or reviewed before new concepts and skills are introduced again. Just about every concept, skill, strategy, and procedure in math and language arts is a foundational skill by which students will build further thinking, understanding, and application.

If you have been checking in on your child's Mail folder you should see the (almost daily) math home links and decodable books. When a new unit begins, there is a unit overview from Everyday Math that is sent home and it has no homework attached to it. That overview is for grown-ups to have an idea of the concepts and skills that will be introduced and worked on in the next unit. Some days flow more smoothly than others and in some cases, math gets squeezed at the end of the day and home links are a great way for your child to connect what they did cover in school with you at home. The same goes for decodable books, some days we focus on specific phonetic skills with other days being treated as review days. Typically what you see in your child's Mail folder is a snapshot of topics, concepts, skills and/or activities that took place that day. If you see nothing in their folder, that means most of the day involved whole class lessons with workbook and collected forms of assessment.

Keep your schedules up to date with the Upcoming Events section in the right hand column and thanks for sending your children to school with such great looking outfits and smiles for picture day! See you on the blacktop!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Walk to School Week

Hey Everyone! This week is Walk to School Week at Mann! This is a great chance for children to learn about the importance of conservation, waste-reduction, and well-being practices. Along with activities in the classroom and special area classes, students are encouraged to walk and bike (and scooter) to school to help eliminate using vehicles, which use nonrenewable resources to operate and put pollutants into the air. Below is a list of colors and themes for each day of the week. Be sure to encourage your child's participation in this great week! It may be a challenge for some but your effort in immeasurably appreciated (by humans and the Earth.)

Monday, October 5th: Students (and staff if they want to!) wear red for transportation safety and receive a hand stamp for walking to school.

Tuesday, October 6th: Students wear blue for water conservation and receive a book mark for walking to school.

Wednesday, October 7th (the official international walk to school day): Students wear green for the earth, come to school in “walking school buses” and receive a treat from Active Transportation Alliance and Whole Foods. At lunch time a 6’ evergreen tree will be planted behind the school by Hoy Landscaping. The students can watch the planting process during recess.

Thursday, October 8th: Students wear yellow for energy conservation and receive Mann Moolah for smoothies. At lunch time students will be rewarded with a hand stamp for bringing a zero waste lunch to school (using all recyclable containers with nothing ending up in a landfill).

Friday, October 9th: Students wear their favorite sports team for physical activity and receive a reusable container with a treat inside for walking to school. These containers are to be taken home for reuse and should not be thrown away!

“Walking School Buses” will also happen on Wednesday, October 14, 21 and 28

Thanks to the Parents of Mann School for putting all of this together!!!