What's Happening in Room A201
April 23
Tuesday, April 23, 2019 8:50 AM

The students are working very carefully on their MCA tests and most need additional time, so we will provide time the afternoon of April 30 and the morning of May 2.  Please also send hard mint candies for these two dates.

Due to additional MCA time being scheduled for all of the third grade classes, we will not be able to switch for the math unit "Numbers to 100,000."  This unit will be covered in homerooms.  We had started this unit in March prior to reviewing for the MCA.  It involves understanding place value up to 6 digits as well as adding, subtracting, rounding  and solving word problems with large numbers.  You may wish to point out large numbers that you see in real life:  car and home prices, populations of cities, etc.

Thanks for coming to our dulcimer concert!  Afterwards we enjoyed a fun Art Adventure lesson with Sara Bergan.  Ask your child about the project that we did after discussing various pieces form the MIA collection.  We will have another lesson with Sara soon!

In science we are learning about different factors that affect pitch. (length, tension, rate of vibration).  We've used xylophone bars, kalimbas, water bottles, long gongs  and Foss-uleles to help us understand the concepts.  Ask your child about the unusual sounding "instruments".  One concept you can help reinforce is the difference between volume and pitch. 

We have started to read about highlights of the different National Parks.  This will give us background knowledge for a writing project which begins next week.

Happy Spring!



April 15
Monday, April 15, 2019 4:45 PM

Just a reminder that we will be taking the MCA Math test on Thursday morning, April 18.  We will take the MCA Reading assessment next Tuesday, April 23.  Students are allowed to bring mint hard candies (not gum) to help their brain stay alert during each test. 

WE have finished building our dulcimers and are learning to play some simple tunes.  Our concert is Friday morning, 9:50-10:20 in the gym.  We hope you can join us!  The dulcimers wil alsol be used as part of our science lessons on sound.   In addition, we will play for our kindergarten buddies on Thursday afternoon.

Last Friday, 6 students got to go to a special hands on science presentation on sound.  Their persuasive letters to convince me to select them worked!  The rest of us proved that tuning forks vibrate by holding them next to our cheeks, next to a sheet of paper, next to a ping pong ball on a string, and by placing them in a cup of water after striking them.  Ask us about what happened!

Today we observed changes in the plants growing in a hydroponic solution.  We may have a bean crop in a couple of weeks!

During reading we continue to explore animal adaptations.  Students will be creating their own animal and will explain its unique adaptations to survive in its habitat, catch prey and avoid predators. We will also read non-fiction and realistic fiction about weather and climates.  We are learning to compare 2 texts on the same topic and to use text features to better understand the article.  I shared that sometimes maps, graphs, and pictures with captions can help build our interest in an article we originally weren't too keen on reading.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019 4:35 PM


You probably heard about our science activity Monday already! Dissecting owl pellets to discover rodent bones always qualifies as gross but REALLY COOL!


What with all the excitement over bones your child may have forgotten to tell you we DO have spelling / Greek and Latin vocabulary this week.


We are proud of all the progress students are making with their math facts! Keep practicing those stubborn tricky facts until they just pop into your head when you see them. This will come in really handy on the state test as we solve multi-step word problems.


In literacy we are starting a unit called Animal Adaptations and learning to identify various tools poets and writers use: similes, metaphors, personification, hyperbole, alliteration and onomatopoeia. Remember to have your child read each night for at least 20 minutes. You can enhance their learning by asking them to spend part of their time reading from other genre (try poetry or non-fiction informational books on various animals). Ask your child to talk about what they read and give reasons and evidence as to why they prefer a certain book over others (from those outside their usual selections).


Thanks in advance to those parents who have volunteered to help out with our dulcimer project! We start up tomorrow and still have room for parents who would like to volunteer for an hour. Tuesday and Wednesday, 2:45-3:45. Don't miss the fun!

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