Friday, December 23, 2011

Merry Christmas!


Well, it's been ONE. FULL. WEEK. since I've seen you and I miss you like crazy!!  I cannot believe how fast this week has gone!  Only 10 more days until we kick off our learning in 2012!  I hope you are having a fabulous break and have a wonderful Christmas!

See you soon!
Love always,
Mrs. Thomas

Thursday, December 15, 2011

12.15.11

Happy second to last day of school for 2011, friends!!  Tomorrow is our LAST day!!!  Ahhhh!!! We are dopping like flies around here...sicky Vicky and Rickies!! 

As this flu season is upon us, other communicable diseases spread their ickiness too...so we we need to be sure we are taking the appropriate precautions to ensure our health:
-frequent handwashing
-adequate rest and nutrition
-coughing and sneezing into the crook of our arms
-staying home if we are vomitting or have even a low-grade fever
-using hand sanitizer frequently, tissues to blow our nose, and being conscious about keeping our hands out of our mouths, eyes, and noses.

I sure hate to have my "lovebugs" be "sickbugs" :(  We miss you when you're not here!!!  Feel better fast, friends!!

WRITING/ READING:
Our class went to Ms. Frederick today to learn about Christmas and Winter Holiday traditions in Mexico.  I had Ms. Schrader's class in here with me to learn about holiday traditions in Israel.  I finally get to have my homeroom babies in HERE with ME tomorrow!  YAAAAAY!!!
HOMEWORK: none!

MATH:
We completed our midterms and worked on our Math Curse problems.
HOMEWORK: none.

PM activities:
students worked on their math curses while I helped small groups mold their snowman ornaments that we will paint and complete tomorrow.  They are already sooooo cute!  Imagine them with paint!!!
HOMEWORK: none.

Have a tremendous night and I can't wait to see you for our final school day of 2011!!
I love you!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

12.14.11

Hello all and Happy Wednesday!  We got the opportunity to meet Mrs. Butler's replacement, Mr. Harman today...he is super nice!  Thank you to everyone who sent in supplies for our Winter Party this Friday! 

We are still in need of the following items:
sugar cookies
icing
savory treats  (pizza rolls, fruit, veggies and dip, etc.)
Plaster-of-Paris

WRITING/ READING:
Today, I had Mrs. Butler's class in here in Israel with me while our students went to her room to learn about Holiday/ Christmas traditions in Ireland.  They made an AWESOME red candle to bring home and put in their windows as well as Shamrock cookies to bring luck for the New Year!
HOMEWORK: none, but have you returned your group's chapter books to me?

SCIENCE:
Ms. Frederick came and worked on Jeopardy for review with the students.
HOMEWORK: none, BUT test is TOMORROW!

MATH:
Most of finished our midterm assessment and...WOW!!!  Every. single. student. has gotten a PROFICIENT or DISTINGUISHED!!!!  I am so. so. sooooooo proud of you all!
HOMEWORK: none

REMINDERS:
no vocabulary words this week
Winter Break starts after this Friday.  Classes resume January 2nd, 2012!
Winter parties are at 1:05PM Friday, December 16, 2011

Have a wonderful Wednesday night!
I love you!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

12.13.11

Hi friends!  Happy Tuesday! 

WRITING/ READING:
Today, we began our "Countries Around the World Holiday Study".  Our class was off to Germany with Ms. Schrader while I had Ms. Frederick's class in Israel in here with me.  It sure is fun being able to travel to a different country during the school day!  Tomorrow, our class will be heading to Ireland with Mrs. Butler while I have Mrs. Butler's class traveling with me. 
HOMEWORK: none.  BUT, have you turned in your group's chapter book to me yet?!?

SCIENCE:
We did not have Ms. Frederick today because of our winter Math MAP assessments this morning during our regularly scheduled Science time.

MATH:
This morning, we took our math MAP test and then this afternoon, we worked on completing our midterm assessment.  WARREN WAS OUR BIG WINNER ON GAIN AND SCORE!!!  Way to Go, Warren on your 224!!!  You are UNTOUCHABLE and we are so, so, sooooooo proud of you!
HOMEWORK: think of a math problem you might solve in your daily life.  We'll be doing projects for the remainder of this week with that idea in mind.

REMINDERS/ ANNOUNCEMENTS:

NO vocabulary words this week

all reading chapter books MUST BE TURNED BACK INTO ME BEFORE YOU LEAVE FOR WINTER BREAK!

we NEED supplies for our WINTER PARTY this Friday at 1:05.

**I sent a letter home on Friday, but please let me know if you would like another or have questions about what to send in. We will be decorating cookies (with icing, sprinkles, M&Ms, chocolate chips, candy, etc.) AND making a snowman ornament that I made when I was in 5th grade and my mother STILL hangs on her tree.

**The supplies we need for this snowman ornament ^ are: "Plaster-of-Paris"; white 'GESSO' paint; white, black, and orange acrylic paint, toothpicks; bobby-pins; fabric 1" thick (length does not matter); and ornament hooks.


Our last day of School before Winter Break is THIS Friday. School resumes Monday, January 2nd, 2012.

Monday, December 12, 2011

12.12.11

Hello my "Nutty Buddies"!  And Happy LAST MONDAY OF SCHOOL IN 2011 to YOU!!!  Can you believe we only have FOUR days left until this school year is halfway complete?!?  Yikes!  I feel like there is so much we still need to cover...yet, I know that there's so much we already have as well!

WRITING/ READING:
We began/ finished our Midterm assessment and I am happy to report that we did A.W.E.S.O.M.E!  We had 7 Distinguished, 12 Proficient, and 2 Apprentice Highs!  This was a waaaaay difficult test over every. single. concept. we've covered so far this school year.  I am so proud of everyone...especially my reading kiddos who were using every tool in our test taking box as many hit a HOMERUN on this test!  Woooo hooooo...GOOOOO "Nutty Buddies"!  (Nutty Buddies is the nickname Jeremiah assigned to us for me to call our class since I'm always asking them if they're nutty, or telling them through giggles that they are nutty...which I LOVE so much about these tremendous friends up in room 105!)

Guess what?!?  We start our "Countries Around the World" project tomorrow and our class will be boarding a flight to Mexico to learn about Winter holiday traditions there!  Sadly, I will not have my homeroom friends back here in "Israel" with me until Friday!  Ahhhh!!!  Have fun in other countries for Reading friends!  Send me a postcard?!? 
HOMEWORK: none!  We have NO Vocabulary words this week due to our ehhh hemmm...worldly travels, so enjoy a week of less work to do at home!

MATH:
We had a special guest come work with us on multiplication and using pictures to solve multiplication equations.  We sure loved having Ms. Gordon here with us and we hope she had a great time too!

ALSO, we began our mathematics Midterm assessment.  This is even harder than the Reading test and the students are going well! 
Tomorrow, we take the MATH MAP assessment and then Wednesday, we will begin our math projects over, The Math Curse.
HOMEWORK: none

SCIENCE:
Ms. Frederick worked with us on natural disasters that can change the surface of our earth.
HOMEWORK: none.

REMINDERS/ ANNOUNCEMENTS:
NO vocabulary words this week

Math MAP test is tomorrow at 10:00a.m. in the computer lab.

Orchestra Concert is TONIGHT at 6PM

all reading chapter books MUST BE TURNED BACK INTO ME BEFORE YOU LEAVE FOR WINTER BREAK!

we NEED supplies for our WINTER PARTY this Friday at 1:05. 
 **I sent a letter home on Friday, but please let me know if you would like another or have questions about what to send in.  We will be decorating cookies (with icing, sprinkles, M&Ms, chocolate chips, candy, etc.) AND making a snowman ornament that I made when I was in 5th grade and my mother STILL hangs on her tree.
Here was MY finished product!  Super cute, huh?!?  He's lost his arms over the years :(

**The supplies we need for this are: "Plaster-of-Paris"; white 'GESSO' paint; white, black, and orange acrylic paint, toothpicks; bobby-pins; fabric 1" thick (length does not matter); and ornament hooks. 


Our last day of School before Winter Break is THIS Friday.  School resumes Monday, January 2nd, 2012.
See?  That's ther beginning of the ornament...and that's me as a 5th grader...don't you dare laugh at my HUGE glasses, closed eyes, and neato turtleneck...bahahahahaha!  Okay, you can :)




PROOF that it is older than the kids!  17 years old this year!

Friday, December 9, 2011

12.9.11

WOWZA!!!!  I could NOT be more excited about most of our MAP results in reading today!  The students absolutely rocked. it. OUT.  Our big winner today was John, moving up 24 POINTS...yes, you heard me correctly, 24 POINTS!!!  We expect most students to move about 3-4 points between testing sessions, but 24?!?  Holy Toledo!  Crazy!  His Momma came in to surprise him with Balloons, a candy gram, and a card!  She is the sweetest ever and it was awesome seeing the thrills of a proud momma and a talented son...they gave me chills!!!

Here are our other BIG gainers on MAP Reading today!!!





WRITING and READING:
We took our summative assessment over Main Idea and supporting details found in the text.  Our ORQs were EXPONENTIALLY better than last time and I am so pumped!

SCIENCE & MATH
We did NOT have Science or Math today due to MAP testing during Science time and STOMP BASH during Math Time.  I had such A BLAST dancing with you all in the gym!  YAAAAY!!  Congratulations to everyone who had enough Proficient and Distinguished scores to get to go!  This teacher's heart is filled with overwhelming happiness and pride for all her students!

I love, love, looooooove you!  Thank you for being so awesome to Baby Jack and his momma! 
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Thursday, December 8, 2011

12.8.11

I am a lousy teacher...I completely neglected my blogger duties yesterday and thus, I am incredibly sorry!  It is never best practice to not keep you updated or informed and therefore I promise to continue my daily communication through this outlet and tool.

With that said, I must let you know out of excitement that Jackbaby got a gift from a sweet friend today for Christmas!  Emilee brought Jack a Cubs bear and me an owl that was super sweet and super crafty!  Jack's Daddy (Mr. Thomas) is quite possibly, the BIGGEST Cubs fan EVER and so is Jack's Mamaw (Mr. Thomas's mother - my mother-in-law) so it was the absolute perfect gift!  I sent him a text picture of it this morning after Emilee gave it to me and he was so. so. sooooo excited!  Thank you so much, Emilee, for your kind thoughtfulness!!  You are such a sweet friend to my son!



WRITING:
Since it was orchestra day, we had no direct Writing instruction, but it was incorporated into our reading rotations.  We are still focusing upon multiple meaning words.
HOMEWORK: none - except study words for quiz!

READING:
We are still studying main idea and finding details to support it.  We got in groups and were able to review all concepts from the week.
HOMEWORK: complete the "CHARACTER COMPARISON" Venn Diagram, AND the "STORY MAP" for your group's chapter book.  ALSO, please work on the "Unscramble my Word" activity for your vocabulary words this week.  Vocabulary test is TOMORROW!

SCIENCE:
Students worked with Ms. Frederick on a cool activity!  They got to see how volcanoes erupt and witness that rapid earth process that can cause significant change to our surface and those around it.
HOMEWORK: none.

MATH:
We finished our skill yesterday of looking at ways to divide numbers into equal groups and seeing the relationship between multiplication and division.  Students were asked to find ways to arrange tables for an upcoming family reunion with 36 relatives present.  They had 5 different shapes of tables that could only sit a certain number of people per table and there could be no remainders or parts of tables used.  It was great fun!  We also started on LONG DIVISION! 
Visit these sites tonight to help you with this awesome skill:
HOMEWORK: students need to practice multiplication facts.  We began long division today and it was incredibly difficult for many students who do not have mastery of this basic skill.

Have a terrific night and rest up...we have MAP testing TOMORROW!!!  I KNOW you are going to ROCK it!

xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

12.6.11

Hello everyone and Happy Terrific Tuesday to you!  It may be another dreary day, but I am pumped about the start of winter weather rolling in...I sure hope it sticks!

WRITING:
Writing was in Reading Rotations today since the majority of the students had orchestra.
HOMEWORK: complete "Multiple Meanings" worksheet

READING:
To practice our skill of focus, students met with me in a small group to read articles from Scholastic magazines for Kids and we used the Hand Organizer to identify the main idea (goes in the palm of the hand), and details we read in the text that supports the main idea (listed on the fingers).  Students also got to work on some new (and oh so very fun) Word Work activities...ask your student to share one with you tonight...one is wearing a headband while you clue the person into the word you are describing for them to guess without seeing the headbands on his/her head!  They looked so cute!  Students also worked independently to identify the main idea from our reading text for the week (Wildfires) AND met with groups to discuss favorite parts of chapter books in preparation for our projects coming up!
HOMEWORK: complete Exercises 2 and 3 for our Vocabulary (and the "Multiple Meanings" worksheet listed above under Writing Homework).

MATH:
We practiced extra hard on some DIVISION and well, the students are "knocking it out of the park!"  They really are doing a sensational job and I could not be more proud of their progress!
HOMEWORK: TEXTBOOK page 100, problems 1 through 6, using the H-T-O method we've been practicing in class.
ALSO, complete ANY of the multiplication problems from the worksheets we worked on in class.

SCIENCE:
No Science today due to Ms. Frederick's class having MAP testing!
HOMEWORK: none.

Have a wonderful evening and I cannot wait to see you tomorrow!!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Christmas is 19 days away!
and Winter Break begins after 8 school days from today!

Monday, December 5, 2011

12.5.11

Hello Gents and Judies!  I hope I find you dry on this dreary Monday afternoon!  We've had a busy day of winding down our classes for 2011!  I came in to a very special surprise today...
meet, Mortimer - he now greets us at our classroom door!
Hayden brought me an oh-so very cool new owl!!!  I have named him, "Mortimer" and he now hangs outside our classroom door!  What a sensationally, AMAZING gift that I am so touched to have!  Hayden, you reeeeeaaaaally made my day and I am so grateful for your thoughtfulness!

WRITING:
This week, we are studying words that have multiple meanings (homonyms) like: fall, land, fan, check, change, raise, roll, beat, etc.  Shellby pointed out that we have some multiple meaning words on our vocabulary (Arctic - a noun of a place, and arctic - an adjective)...good i-Spy eyes, Shellby Sue! I also read them a story entitled The King who Rained so we could look at words that are not only spelled the same, but have different meanings, compared to words that sound the same yet have different meanings (homophones). 
HOMEWORK: none tonight!

READING:
We are continuing our focus of identifying the Main Idea of a nonfiction text and finding details within the text to support our thinking and prove our reasoning.  Today, we read a story entitled, WildFires, about how wildfires are not always detrimental to an environment and can actually be beneficial which is quite interesting compared to the picture of how these are typically painted. 
HOMEWORK: Complete Exercise 1 for our vocabulary this week which is Lesson 5.  Also, complete ONE "Tic-Tac-Toe" activity of your choice. 

our WOW! Words this week are:
accommodations
Hanukkah
enthusiastic
kaleidoscope
onomatopoeia

SCIENCE:
Ms. Frederick worked with students on consequences of earth processes (rapid or slow - meaning earthquakes, hurricanes, erosion, etc.)
HOMEWORK: none.

In division, the DIVISOR is the worker bee, separating the dividend into equal groups!
MATH:
I worked with students on DIVIDING!  Currently, we are using place value charts and chips to draw out our division and working on making groups of each place-value.  We have learned that the number you start with is the DIVIDEND; the number that divides is the DIVISOR (the "worker bee"!); and the answer in these equations is called the QUOTIENT.  For example, in 565 divided by 5 (which equals 113), the dividend is 565, the divisor is 5, and the quotient is 113.  Students have been doing 3-digit by 1-digit division!  Tough stuff, but they are catching on and L.O.V.I.N.G. it!
HOMEWORK: none tonight, but PLEASE work on multiplication facts!

Have a terrific night and stay dry!  I'll see you in the morning!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Christmas is only 20 days from TODAY!
and Winter Break is only 9 school days away!

Friday, December 2, 2011

12.2.11

Hello all and HAPPY DECEMBER!!!  I hope I find you well and wonderful on this fantastic, fabulous Friday!!  Yesterday, we 4th grade teachers had a Professional Development (a meeting) to attend so there were subs here for all 4 of us.  While I was disappointed in the actions of some, I am proud of most!  To my knowledge, you all were well-behaved for the most part with our sub!  yay!

READING & WRITING:
We took our vocabulary test and then had an assessment over our concept of focus this week: Identifying the Main Idea and finding and using Details to SUPPORT it.
HOMEWORK: i gave the assignment that ALL chapter books needed to be finished BY TODAY and I saw that SEVERAL friends had simply ignored that request.  Thus, they MUST be finished BY MONDAY or there will be consequences!

SCIENCE:
Students again got to work on studying the properties of different types of soils with Ms. Frederick.  They have such a GREAT time! 
HOMEWORK: none.

MATH:
Because of our GREAT behavior in Science yesterday (Ms. Frderick's sub said they were beyond phenomenal!), and our adaptability due to some unexpected incidents, I gave the students extra, EXTRA recess for the first half of math!
When we came in, we worked on reviewing and practicing some 3-digit multiplication and the students worked hard and did an excellent job!
HOMEWORK: none.

I hope you have a tremendous weekend!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

11.30.11

Hello all and happy last day of November!  Tomorrow is DECEMBER and well, only 31 days left in 2011....ahhhh!!!

WRITING:
We are working on CONTEXT CLUES which is finding the meaning of a word in a passage by reading the clues found in the sentence in which it is used.  We watched a fun video/ song that you can view HERE to get us excited about our skill of focus. The students are doing terrific with this concept!  We completed two practice pages in class and they have another for homework if it was not finished in Word Work.
HOMEWORK: Complete practice page with Exercises 2, 3, and 4.

READING:
To practice with main idea, we read a passage about "Log Cabins" and discussed topic sentences of passages and paragraphs and how they can clue us into identifying the main idea of a nonfiction passage.  Students also got to get into groups and continue with practicing this skill of focus. 
HOMEWORK: complete "Main Idea" worksheet and rest of word practice for Exercises 2, 3, and 4.

SCIENCE:
Students again got to work with different types of soil and discover their properties.
HOMEWORK: none

MATH:
We really got cookin' with division today in MATH!  We learned how to divide by 1, 10, and 100!
HOMEWORK: none so far, but we're mooooovin' right along!

Have a wonderful Wednesday and remember that I love you greatly!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas
Christmas is 25 days away!
Our Winter Break begins after 12 more school days!
Kwanzaa is 26 days from today
Hanukkah begins in 20 days



New Years Eve is 31 days from today!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

11.29.11

I am so sorry to be getting this up so very late!  The staff has meetings after school on Tuesdays and then I was swamped...ahhh!!!  I always want it to be my top priority to have continuous communication with you about our life in the classroom and assignments!

WRITING:
Students had orchestra today so we will pick up where we left off with writing and studying context clues tomorrow!
HOMEWORK: none

READING:
We finished reading our story about the Titanic and I love to see the students' interest in this topic...I have to admit, it is one of my most favorite as it is so intriguing!  We used this story as a means of nonfiction to teach the skill of finding the Main Idea.  Students were able to get into reading groups and go through Literature Circles, AND work on WORD WORK, and complete an assignment entitled, "A Handy Idea" where they read an article from Scholastic News and identified its main idea and details to support it.  We will continue with this concept tomorrow!
HOMEWORK: guess who forgot to pass out Wordly Wise Exercise 2 today?  Yup, that's me :) 
I'll allow them group time tomorrow to complete it to make up for my "ditzyness"...or is it "pregnancy brain"??  ALSO, students MUST have their group's chapter book FINISHED BY THIS FRIDAY!

SCIENCE:
Ms. Frederick had the students doing such a fun experiment by exploring with different types of soil!  I came back in our room to grab something and I was so jealous because it looked awesome!
HOMEWORK: none.

MATH:
We got to do a SUPER fun lesson with Mrs. Butler's class...so take that!  tee-hee, I'm just kidding on my competitiveness (or am I?!?)...but we DID go to Mrs. Butler's room to do an exploratory introductory lesson on division using the book, The Doorbell Rang and chocolate chip cookies. 
HOMEWORK: none tonight, but like I've said a million and half times before, working on multiplication facts is NEVER a bad idea!!!

Have a super LAST Tuesday of November 2011!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Monday, November 28, 2011

11.28.11

Welcome Back, friends!  I sure hope that everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving and time off from work and/ or school!

WRITING:
This week, we are focusing upon using context clues to discover the meanings of words in passages and texts that we may not know.  Context means the way in which the word is used, and clues are hints that a sentence may give us to the meaning of a words. 
HOMEWORK: completed in class - Ms. Frederick's reading class has the Context Clues Worksheet, but only her reading class.

READING:
We are focusing upon one of my very most favorite concepts: MAIN IDEA.  The main idea is what the text is mostly about.  We find main idea in works of nonfiction and our story for the week is one about the Titanic.  In Ms. Frederick's class, students completed the same lesson, but have different homework, which is: "Using Context Clues" worksheet and a "MAIN IDEA" Independent Practice worksheet.
HOMEWORK: Vocabulary words were passed out and the TESTS are Friday, per usual.  TONIGHT: Complete ONE activity from "Tic-tac-toe" and Exercise 1 worksheet.

Our WOW! Words this week are:
conscientious
pessimistic
optimistic
acknowledgment
definitely

PS, Did you know that you can view this week's Wordly Wise (Lesson 4) vocabulary words on this website AND play games while practicing with words?!?  It's most DEFINITELY (see that WOW! Word in use?!?) worth a 'look-see'!!!
SCIENCE:
Ms. Frederick worked with the students on creating an organizer for building minerals and soil types.
HOMEWORK: reading passage

MATH:
We reviewed multiplication by playing our game show.  Ashley was our big winner, chicken dinner!  Way to go!  She and Warren tied until we had a sudden death round where I gave them a 5-digit by 2-digit problem to complete and Ashley got it right for an extra 80 points!  Woooo Hooo!!!  Tomorrow, we start...DIVISION!!!!  YAAAAAAY!!!
HOMEWORK: none tonight, but be ready for LOTS of division practice to come here soon!

Have a magnificent Monday and I'll see you tomorrow!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

ANNOUNCEMENT:
 Snacks will NO LONGER be allowed for students in MY homeroom.  There was an incident that has led us to these consequences.
Christmas is 27 days from today!
(Winter Break is only 14 school days away!)

Hanukkah begins 22 days from today
Kwanzaa begins 28 days from today!

New Years Eve is 33 days from today...YOWZA!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

11.22.11

YAAAAAAY...
Thanksgiving BREAK is HERE!!!  I know I say this A LOT, but I cannot believe how quickly this year is passing by...eeeeeek!!  I want you to know that I feel so blessed and am so thankful that each of you are in my lives!  You make my days brighter and work not seem like work at all. 

I have heard this thankful poem before, but recently I found it online and I love how it illustrates to be thankful for even the seeming annoyances in our lives.  We are blessed beyond what we generally realize and are so lucky to be citizens of this nation.  Here is the "I AM THANKFUL" piece (I modified it some to fit me...does it make sense to you?!?):

I AM THANKFUL FOR THE STUDENT
WHO IS COMPLAINING ABOUT DOING HIS/HER WORK
BECAUSE THAT MEANS HE/SHE IS AT SCHOOL LEARNING
AND NOT OUT OF CLASS, MISSING OUT

I AM THANKFUL FOR THE TAXES
THAT I PAY
BECAUSE IT MEANS
THAT I AM EMPLOYED.
I AM THANKFUL FOR THE MESS
TO CLEAN AFTER A PARTY
BECAUSE IT MEANS
THAT I HAVE BEEN SURROUNDED BY FRIENDS AND LOVED ONES.


I AM THANKFUL FOR THE CLOTHES
THAT FIT A LITTLE TOO SNUG
BECAUSE IT MEANS
I HAVE ENOUGH TO EAT AND I HAVE A HEALTHY BABY GROWING INSIDE ME

I AM THANKFUL FOR MY SHADOW
THAT WATCHES ME WORK
BECAUSE IT MEANS
I AM OUT IN THE SUNSHINE.

I AM THANKFUL FOR A LAWN
THAT NEEDS MOWING,
WINDOWS THAT NEED CLEANING,
AND GUTTERS THAT NEED FIXING,
BECAUSE IT MEANS
I HAVE A HOME.

I AM THANKFUL FOR ALL THE COMPLAINING
I HEAR ABOUT THE GOVERNMENT
BECAUSE IT MEANS
THAT WE HAVE FREEDOM OF SPEECH.

I AM THANKFUL FOR THE PARKING SPOT
I FIND AT THE FAR END OF THE PARKING LOT
BECAUSE IT MEANS
I AM CAPABLE OF WALKING
AND THAT I HAVE BEEN
BLESSED WITH TRANSPORTATION.

I AM THANKFUL FOR MY HUGE HEATING BILL
BECAUSE IT MEANS
I AM WARM.

I AM THANKFUL FOR THE STUDENTS
IN OUR CLASSROOM
THAT COMPLAIN OR WHINE
BECAUSE IT MEANS
THAT I CAN HEAR.

I AM THANKFUL FOR THE PILE
OF LAUNDRY AND IRONING
BECAUSE IT MEANSI HAVE CLOTHES TO WEAR.

I AM THANKFUL FOR WEARINESS AND ACHING MUSCLES
AT THE END OF THE DAY
BECAUSE IT MEANS
I HAVE BEEN CAPABLE OF WORKING HARD.

AND...
I AM THANKFUL FOR THE ALARM
THAT GOES OFF IN THE EARLY MORNING HOURS
BECAUSE IT MEANS
THAT I AM ALIVE.


READING:
We worked on some more poetry!  The students were able to receive silly poems and then recite them with their groups and share with the class...it was A LOT of fun!

After sharing our silly poems, I shared the meaningful piece above and talked with the students about being grateful for every art of our lives...even the annoying things, because there can be a silver lining in so many things that we do not realize at first.  The students then created their own lists of things that typically annoy them and found reasons to be thankful.  It was so enlightening and a truly rewarding experience!

Next, students finished their "6-Room Poems" from yesterday and worked on a shape poem having to do with fall, Thanksgiving, or being thankful.
HOMEWORK: BE THANKFUL for EVERYTHING!

P.S. Did you know you can visit the Wordly Wise website to find word lists, interactive tools, and games for each of our spelling words and word lists?!?  It's way fun!  Click HERE to preview your words for next week!

SCIENCE:
Ms. Frederick had the students exploring with minerals and discovering our many uses with them.  They are also looking at what rocks are formed from what minerals. 
HOMEWORK: help Momma/ Granny/ Daddy/ Grandaddy/ Aunt/ Uncle/ Cousin/ Friend with the recipes and cooking!!!
 
Then, give them a HUGE hug and tell them you are SO SO SOOOOOO thankful for them!

ALSO....NEW INFO ABOUT SCIENCE FAIR! 
This year, Science Fair is MANDATORY for ALL 4th graders!  New information was sent home with students today from Mrs. Edwards in a manilla folder.  Please review these folders with your student over break and decide on a project.  It MUST be an experiment and NO models will be accepted (meaning, NO fossils, NO volcanoes, etc.).  To make it easier, Mrs. Edwards has broken the project down into chunks that have assignment dates.  The first part of this project and the first assignment is due BY WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30TH (NO later!) which is turning in the Contract Sign Sheet and Project Proposals.   
I found a BUNCH of websites that list TONS and TONS of ideas for Science Fair projects, so if you are stuck...try clicking, HERE...
or HERE...
or HERE...
or HERE...
or HERE...
or HERE...
or HERE...
For more sites, just "GOOGLE" Science Fair Project Ideas, or for additional information, please email Mrs. Edwards at: becky.edwards@fayette.kyschools.us

MATH:
Students got to work on FUN Thanksgiving themed multiplication math!  I love things like that!
HOMEWORK: none - but PLEASE practice those math facts if you're on the road or just "hanging out" after your HUGE feast!  We have GOT to get more fluent in our multiplication facts!

ALSO, please tell someone MULTIPLE ways or reasons you are thankful for them!

additional PM activities:
Students watched a video on minerals and then we enjoyed our ten EXTRA minutes of recess for WINNING the Banner contest from "Buddies NOT Bullies" week, last week at school!
FINALLY, Students worked on created a turkey with feathers stating


I hope you have a tremendous Thanksgiving with your friends, family, and loved ones!  I can't wait to see you on Monday and I'll sure miss you!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas


HAPPY THANKSGIVING, EVERYONE!  I am thankful for YOU!!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

11.21.11

Happy Monday, everyone!  We have had a wonderful day, but there isn't much to report on homework responsibilities..

In READING/ WRITING, we are working on writing a 6-room poem (the rooms being the stanzas) and the students are doing a beautiful job using descriptive details to describe something found outside in nature.

In MATH, we took an assessment over multiplication thus far and the students did WONDERFULLY!!!  Most got a 100% or only missed one...but the good news is...is that the majority of our class scored a 100%!!!!  WOWZA!!!!  You make your dear ol' math teach proud, folks!

Ms. Frederick is working with the students on Rocks and Minerals in SCIENCE.

Since we have a short week and are giving THANKS...we thought we'd give thanks to our students by not assigning any homework!  YAY!  We love you!

Have a wonderful night!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas
Thanksgiving is THREE days from today!
...AND...tomorrow is our LAST day of school before a 5 day break!

Friday, November 18, 2011

11.18.11

Happy Friday, friends!!!!  Whew, what a week...huh?!?  Well, guess what?!?  WE WON THE POSTER CONTEST FOR "Buddies, not Bullies" week!!!!!!!!!!!  Such exciting news!!!  I must say, it WAS quite creative and it did look WAY awesome!  Special thanks to Tori, Tyler, and Lawrence for staying after school yesterday to finish putting it together and adding the final touches!  We each got: our own bag of "Mike and Ike" candies, our own bag of chips, and an extra 10 minutes of recess for winning!  YAY! 
Here is OUR winning banner:
This now hangs up by the front office!  YAY for us!
onto our activities for today:
READING:
We took our Spelling tests and then an assessment over our skill of comparing and contrasting.
HOMEWORK: since you completed a role sheet for reading groups last night...there is NO HOMEWORK this weekend!!!  YAY!

BUDDY MEETING:
We had our fifth of 5 in a series of class meetings about Bully prevention, being a buddy not a bully or bystander, and standing up to others.

PM activities:
We completed an actiuvity about what we're thankful for and then students who earned "buddy passes" for this week got to go to an ice cream social in the cafeteria! 
HOMEWORK FOR TODAY: NONE!

Have a tremendous weekend!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Thanksgiving is only 6 DAYS from TODAY!
ONLY 2 more school days until break!!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

11.17.11

Happy last Thursday of school in November, everyone!  Yes, THIS is our LAST Thursday in November...the 17th!  Crazy, huh?!?  And then, only THREE weeks until Winter Break!  Wowza!

I enjoyed seeing everyone today in their boots as we showed pride to "stomp out bullies"! 
Hayden's boots were THE most fun and FABULOUS of the day!!!  I want some for myself!

some of the boots from today :)


WRITING:
Students had orchestra AND Book Fair this morning, so writing was incorporated into centers activities today.
HOMEWORK: none.

READING:
Students watched the story, Mufaro's Beautiful Daughters, which is an adaptation of Cinderella from African culture.  We have watched a synopsis of the version that is familiar to most Americans (Disney), and the German shortened version too.  They have also read a version in their reading texts, entitled, "Cendrillon." After watching the video, students compared and contrasted two versions from our studies to practice our skill of focus. 
HOMEWORK: Read assigned pages from book (the most any group has is 7 to 12 pages) and complete half of role sheet (since it is such a short reading assignment).
ALSO: Study, study, STUDY for spelling and vocabulary tests tomorrow!

SCIENCE:
Students got to go outside for an activity with Ms. Frederick!
HOMEWORK: none.

PM activities:
Students completed workbook pages 46 - 48 for math to practice multiplication.
THEN, we worked on our poster for "Buddies, not Bullies" week.  Wait for pictures to come tomorrow...it turned out GREAT!  I hope we win, but I'm just proud of us working together for a good cause!
HOMEWORK: none.



I hope you have a THRILLING Thursday!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas
Thanksgiving is ONE week from Today!
3 more school days until break!!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

11.16.11

Happy Wednesday, folks!  I hope I find you dry and warm on this fall day!  This morning, we had our third class meeting in conjunction with bullying week.  Students are learning about what bullying is, how to deal with it, and how to be a buddy, not a bully or bystander.

It was so fantastic seeing all the grandparents here today!  Thank you so much for coming, we absolutely loved having you here...what a special day!

AND, what a GREAT win by our C-A-T-S CATS last night over Kansas!  I must admit, I was not too happy with our game in the first half, but we pulled it together in the second half and showed the world WHY people consider UK to be so great!  I think games like this can show spectators (especially our students), that persistence pays off...we shouldn't give up when the going gets tough.


WRITING:
We are working on Greek and Latin affixes.
HOMEWORK: none.

READING:
We were able to get into groups and go through our reading rotations.  Groups are working on their projects within these rotations and Groups D and B learned about taking weekly Fluency Assessments.
HOMEWORK: none, unless you are in GROUPS D or B where you have your Fluency Folder to do a fluency assessment at home.  These students are: Henry, Lawrence, Tavis, Jeremy, Jual, Emilee, Hayden, and Blake.

SCIENCE:
Students took their assessment over Earth's movements and how they impact our daily lives.
HOMEWORK: none.

MATH:
We finished our Game Show from yesterday and declared a winner...
We then worked on some more multi-digit multiplication and began learning about the partial-products method.
HOMEWORK: none, but please go through multiplication tables a few times...some are still struggling on very basic facts.

Have a wonderful Wednesday evening!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas
Thanksgiving is only 8 days away...that's only ONE WEEK from tomorrow!
4 more school days until break!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

11.15.11

Happy Tuesday Gents and Judies!  I hope you've been able to stay dry on this wet day!

WRITING:
We incoporated our writing lesson into centers today because the majority of the students were gone to orchestra.
HOMEWORK: none.

READING:
We spent the first part of reading going to the BOOK FAIR in the Library!  Students got the opportunity to browse items and create a wishlist of things that piqued their interests.  We will be going again as a class on Thursday, but students may bring in money to go any day.
In reading, we went through our reading rotation centers!  YAY!  I love it when students are able to go through their groups and interact with their peers!
HOMEWORK: Complete VOCABULARY worksheet with Exercises 2&3.  Students DO NOT need to complete a role sheet unless I told them otherwise.  We had a few friends from each group NOT do their role sheet, so they will be doing all the roles for the other people in their group. 

ON A SPECIAL NOTE ABOUT READING:
We had a little "mini" pizza party with each student that brought back BOTH vocabulary assignments from last night.  That was students ONLY homework in reading and several only completed one or the other, but many did not complete both.  Thus, I felt it necessary to reward the students who completed all their assignments and met expectations, so I ordered them pizza from Domino's!  Yummmmmmo, it was DELICIOUS!

SCIENCE:
Students played a Jeopardy game to review for the Science test TOMORROW!
HOMEWORK: STUDY, STUDY, STUDY SCIENCE JOURNALS AND NOTES!!!

MATH:
We reviewed homework from last night because students still needed some extra practice with multi-digit multiplication using the standard algorithm.  Then, we played our multiplication game show for additional practice...these kiddos are so smart!  I love getting to challenge them and enrich their mathematical capabilities!  I am just so in love with them!
HOMEWORK: none tonight - prepare for your SCIENCE test!!!

Have a terrific Tuesday evening!
I can't wait to see these beautiful faces that make my heart smile tomorrow!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Thanksgiving is only 9 days away!!  Gobble Gobble!
(and one week from today, our break begins after school...whoooo whooo!)

Monday, November 14, 2011

11.14.11

Happy Monday, everyone!!  This is our last full week of school for November...crazy, right?!?  It really is mind-bloggling to think that this year is almost halfway over!

WRITING:
We are studying Latin and Greek affixes and how they have helped to cultivate much of our language.  We are learning that English is a "living language", meaning words are constantly being added to our vocabulary and words can change or are influenced by other cultures and their coinciding languages. 
HOMEWORK: I forgot to pass it out...whoops!  So, NONE!

READING:
Again this week, we are working with Mythology to teach the skill of comparing and contrasting.  Today, we completed a top-hat organizer to compare and contrast a Greek myth to a Roman myth.  These are now hanging in our hallway display :)
HOMEWORK: NEW word lists were passed out, so Exercise 1 is due by tomorrow as well as one activity of choice from the "Think-tac-toe" activity sheet.  Vocab. spelling and definitions tests are on Friday, per usual.

our WOW! Words this week (11.14.11 - 11.18.11) are:
revolutionary
metamorphosis
audacity
atrocious
extraordinarily

SCIENCE:
We did not have Science with Ms. Frederick today because 4H came!

MATH:
We are currently working on multi-digit multiplication so we worked on the lattice method, standard algorithm, and the partial-products method today which is new to our tool bag.
HOMEWORK: Complete "Multiplying by 2-digits" worksheet (FRONT ONLY!).  There are 20 problems, you must use the Standard Algorithm for 10, and the Lattice Method for 10.  SHOW YOUR WORK on the separate sheet of notebook paper that was passed out with the worksheet!!!!

Have a Magnificent Monday evening with your loved ones!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas

Thanksgiving is 10 days from today!
(and guess what?!?  ONLY 6 school days until Thanksgiving Break!)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

11.10.11

Hello all and Happy Friday eve!!!  Third grade and Second grade went on field trips today which meant our entire day was all whacky.  Everyone did great with being flexible and I am thankful for our kiddos!

WRITING:
We are continuing to study how prefixes and suffixes (affixes) can change the meaning of a root word.
HOMEWORK: none, but quiz over them TOMORROW!

READING:
We worked on comparing and contrasting a Roman myth to a Greek myth AND on making connections between the gods and goddesses.  The students are LOVING this concept and I am loving that they are loving it so much!

Yet again, we had students STILL not finish their role sheets for their groupwork so we were unable to have reading groups!  Ahhh!  I certainly hate to get frustrated, but this is frustrating!  My reading babies are so smart and I know you are capable of excellence!  I love you all dearly and I also love your awesome work that you can do!  Those of you who still need to finish them, this is your very last chance...kapeesh?? 
HOMEWORK: Complete the CROSSWORD puzzle sheet to help you practice with the definitions of your vocab words because...

you have a VOCABULARY test tomorrow, AND a spelling test.  PLEASE, PLEASE PLEASE make sure to not only study the spelling of the words, but knowing the context in which they are used so we can ace our vocab (definitions) quizzes too!  I predict I'll have to give out LOTS of homework passes for this test because you all are soooo awesome!!

SCIENCE:
Ms. Frederick is continuing to work with our class on seasons!
HOMEWORK: none.

MATH:
We practiced again with the Lattice Method for Multiplication and do you know what?!?  These kiddos are multiplying 3-digit numbers by 2-digit numbers ALL BY THEMSELVES!  Wowza!
HOMEWORK: visit some multiplication websites shown in my list below to practice, practice, practice!

I'll see you tomorrow, bright-eyed and bushy tailed, ready for our awesome Friday!  I love Fridays with you!
xoxo,
Mrs. Thomas


Thanksgiving is ONLY TWO WEEKS from TODAY!!!
YAYAYAYAYAYAAAAAY!