Friday, September 30, 2011


Happy LAST day of September, everyone!!!  Can you believe tomorrow is October first??  Wowza, it's almost Halloween!  Ahhh!! 

This morning, students worked on a Science assessment over their unit of study for Ms. Frederick.  The concept of focus was Unity and Diversity (structure and function, life cycles, etc.).

a.m. reward:
I  gave an impromptu award to those students that have had their planners signed every night this week as that is an expectation.  These students from our class and Ms. Frederick's class were allowed to have some extra recess time while the rest of the class had to stay in the room and read.

Independently, students also worked on a project entitled, "A Walk Through...." where they literally gave a walk through their book. The students traced their own feet and used them as footprints. On each footprint, an event of the story was written to help sequence the events and then details to support the events as we are working on learning not only WHAT events happen, but WHY events happen.  Finally, the students glued the footprints down on paper to make a path, or "walk" through the events of their book and created a summary sentence to summarize all the events into one thought.

PM activities:
Yesterday, we earned our 50th, 51st, and 52nd compliments in the hallway which means it is time for a reward!  Thus, I allowed the students to have a movie theater party where they ate popcorn and watched a movie.  It was a nice afternoon and I LOVE it when the students earn rewards!

Tomorrow will be such a PERFECT day to get out and enjoy beautiful fall weather!  I'm feeling a fire-pit night...anyone else?!?  Ooooo...I can just taste the apple cider, s'mores, and pumpkin pie now...can you?!?  I. LOVE. FALL!  Do you?!?

Have a fabulous weekend!
Mrs. Thomas 

Thursday, September 29, 2011


Ahhhh!!!  I have not been the best blogger this week and I am so very sorry about that!  I promise that next week, I'll be much better!

Today was PICTURE DAY!  All students arrived looking fantastic and super snazzy!  I think our pictures will turn out great :)

Today was also orchestra day which really cuts into our reading and writing instruction time.  Thus, we got started on Reading and Writing at 8:45, instead of 8, so we were quite a bit behind schedule.  Then, we had to cut it short a bit because of pictures at 10, so in the actual instruction time, we worked on identifying events in a story and finding details to support the events. 

Next, we read through a story entitled, How Mowgli Became a Part of the Wolf Family.  The students then went through the text and highlighted significant happenings in the story and then used colored pencils to underline supporting details.  Afterwards, we worked on "Multiple Choice Magic Tricks" for taking a multiple choice test and then answered an Open Response question.  The students really enjoyed this story!

PM activities:
since we are ahead of other classes in Math and missed Science instruction today, I went over the students' previous Science assessment and completed a review powerpoint with them for Ms. Frederick.
HOMEWORK: study science notebook notes and last test for assessment tomorrow

Then, we had time to take a timed multiplication quiz and practice some factor trees and factor rainbows.  While challenging, the students are really enjoying this skill!
HOMEWORK: complete a timed multiplication quiz with an adult at home.  The adult MUST sign the quiz completed in class AND the one completed at home!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Happy Tuesday all!  We have been SUPER busy the past two days working on...FACTORS!!!  We have learned that a factor is a number that can be multiplied by another number to equal a given product.  This is one of the toughest concepts for students in 4th grade to grasp so we are really putting forth our best effort in order to see success and mastery with this concept.  PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE work on multiplication facts at home with your student!

We are working on using commas correctly.  We know that commas are to be used when listing more than two things, between more than one adjective, after a conjunction (and, or, but, if...), and after an introductory interjection.
HOMEWORK: COMMAS worksheet (2 sides - "Writing Dates" and "Yes, No, Sure").

Our focus this week is upon determining the significant events that make up a story.  Events are happenings in a story and for events to be significant (important), they must support the story and would change the story if they did not happen.  Our story is, A Bad Case of Stripes, and we've been watching it read to us here
In groups, students are creating an accordian book to retell the main events of the story and use details to support how they know they are significant happenings.  They are also creating a game of sequencing strips for their group's chapter books.

Ms. Frederick is working with the students on life cycles, so they were able to get in groups to illustrate various animal life cycles. 

As I mentioned before, we are working on FACTORS.  This is a tough concept for students to master so we will be spending A LOT of time on this.  It is MORE THAN IMPERATIVE that students are practicing their multiplication facts as much as possible at home.  These facts should have been mastered last year in 3rd grade and it is tough ground to make up when we have so much we need to do!
HOMEWORK: practice math facts for 2s, 3s, 4s, 5s, and 6s.


Mrs. Thomas

Friday, September 23, 2011

Hello all!  We were on "lockdown" mode again today because of our behavior from Wednesday.  Students have really had some intensive practice with exhibiting model behavior and expectations.

a.m. activities:
We worked on an ORQ for Reading and practice some test taking skills such as eliminating all obvious wrong responses, reading the question and then rereading the passage, going back to the passage, etc.  Students were able to see many skills that helped them in taking an assessment and we able to see that using these skills in conjuction with taking their time can be incredibly beneficial as all were VERY successful on this test!  YAY!!!

The woman from 4H also came today to give us our first introductory one where she talked about 4H camp and what 4H is and why and how it will be beneficial to us.  It is so much fun!
REMINDER: be selling your candy bars!  You will be able to get $0.50 from every $1.00 candy bar sold towards your 4H camp if you sell 60 bars, that's $30 off your trip and it will only cost you $10.00 to go!  How AWESOME is that?!?  So, the more you sell, the cheaper your trip will be!

PM activities:
we watched an AMAZING video about Metamophosis which is the life cycle of a butterfly.  It is truly magnificent seeing the changes these exquisite creatures go through!  We then created a life cycle book in conjunction with the video about the 4 stages of the life cycle (egg -> larva (caterpillar) -> pupa or chrysalis (cocoon) -> adult (butterfly)). 

Students were also able to continue working on their multiplication flash cards activities.  Facts 0 -12 are something EVERY 4TH STUDENT MUST KNOW!  Please, please, please be working on these at home, in the car, at the grocery, in the tub, EVERYWHERE!  Knowledge of these skills is imperative for success in 4th grade!

For online games and practice, see these fun websites!
Multiplication Practice One
Multiplication Practice Two
Multiplication Practice Three
Multiplication Practice Four
Multiplication Practice Five

REMINDER: Picture Day is NEXT Thursday, September 29th, 2011. 

Have a great weekend!
Mrs. Thomas

Thursday, September 22, 2011


Good afternoon all -

Today was quite a different type of day because we had such a rough report from the substitute yesterday.  I was at a training all day with the other 3 4th grade teachers when I was met with emails from Mr. Kirk, Ms. Warren, and Mr. K, all about the craziness that was taking place in my classroom and from my students in and around the school. 
I had to admit, in all my years of teaching, I have never had a report even close to what we got yesterday so today, the students had much reteaching and no privileges. On a happy note, I would like to thank our friends Hayden, Daisy, Kiyah, Tyler, Quayveon, and Ashley for getting GLOWING reports from the substitute and being named role models by their peers for leading by example with excellent behavior and selflessness towards others.  These friends were able to visit all day with other classes (Mrs. Butler's or Ms. Schrader's) instead of dealing with consequences here in our room.  I hate to hear that so many of our other friends were unable to show our Deep Springs Pride and exhibit examplary examples of our expectations. While unfortunately no fun, I hope today and tomorrow will be lessons learned.

On a different note, today was also Tori's birthday!  Poor gal, we did not get to "party it up" in the usual fashion and production that I like on my students' birthday.  However, her awesome mother did show up with thoughtful and wonderful gifts for our sweet girl!
Our Birthday Girl!
Please remember that no matter what, I always love you!
Mrs. Thomas

Tuesday, September 20, 2011


Happy Tuesday Gents and Judies!  I hope your day has found you well and wonderful!  I certainly enjoy life much better when we are able to go outside for recess!

This morning we took our MAP assessment for Math.  And can I just say....WOWEE?!!!!?  These kids did wonderfully, many soaring past their goals they set for themselves!  I am so proud of them for doing so well!

Because of Orchestra and MAP testing, we didn't get in much writing or reading this morning, but did work on our Math Facts project.  Please be looking for a letter regarding this coming home this afternoon in your student's take home folder.

PM activities:
We continued working on our Math facts project AND I administered all materials for reading centers this week (Word Work, Independent Practice, etc.).  Students also worked on completing our reading assessment from last Friday.

I hope you have a terrific Tuesday evening!  Remember, us 4th grade teachers will not be here tomorrow because of a Professional Development, but will be in and around the building.
Mrs. Thomas

PS, DO NOT FORGET to turn in your RED Candy Bar form pertaining to our upcoming 4th grade field trip!

Monday, September 19, 2011


Happy Manic Monday, all!  I tell you what, maybe it's just me, but it is even tougher to get going on a glooooomy, Monday...isn't it?!?  Blah blah, but it's OVER! 

We began studying contractions which are pairs of words combined with an apostrophe.  Students got to play a memory match game with their success partner where they matched up the root words with the contractions that they form. 
HOMEWORK: complete BOTH side of contractions worksheet for further practice of this skill at home.

This week, our concept of focus is setting which is WHERE and WHEN a story takes place.  Our story this weeks takes place in the great city of New York, so we discussed the setting of the city but listening to "Empire State of Mind", analyzing the lyrics, and then watching the State Farm commercial with kids singing the lyrics.  Next, we looked for clues to the setting in the story.
HOMEWORK: Make sure you have read up to chapter SEVEN (7) in your group's chapter book.

Students were able to look at and work with soil with Ms. Frederick and got to use the CPS clickers.  We had quite a few reteaches and reminders for our off-task behavior, talking, and respect so we did not get to participate in all of the fun activities Ms. Frederick had planned for us.  I sure hate hearing reports like that :(

To complete our ESTIMATION AND ROUNDING unit, we completed our ASSESSMENT that we began on Friday.  The completion of this assessment entailed finishing an ORQ.  The students were patient and worked really well!
HOMEWORK: none, but are you ready to start our NEW unit on Factors and Multiples tomorrow?!?  HINT: Practice those multiplication facts!!!

I can't wait to see you tomorrow!
Mrs. Thomas
**We have MATH MAP Testing tomorrow!
**Students need to earn 10 tickets in order to be qualified for Lunch Bunch on Friday.
**Please turn in RED candy letter sheets for 4H Camp!  (These show HOW MANY candy bars you are willing to sell to help with your cost for camp - $40)

Bob's Adventures with Ashley 9.12.11 - 9.15.11

I had a lot of fun with Ashley. I was so glad she took me home. She gave me a tour of her house. She introduced me to her family members and pets. She is a nice girl. She took me to her mom's work. Then we went to the Southland Bowling Center to watch her dad bowl on his bowling league every Monday. Ashley always took me to school. I went to specials,lunch,recess,to go see Buster,and having class with her. When we got home, I helped her do her chores and homework. After,doing chores and homework, we played on her PS3. We played a game called Little Big  Planet. It was so much fun. We played on the computer together. We went on YouTube. Ashley taught me how to walk backwards,run,and fly. It was fun.

Bob's Adventures with MyKel 9.16.11 - 9.19.11

Me and MyKel had a great time together and we went outside to go see my cousin and brother fight. We played "hide-and-go-seek" and we didn't get caught at all!!  It was way fun! He showed me some cool places to hide, and of course, with me being an owl, I could show him where we like to hide as well! We also played" freeze-tag" and we got tagged and then played ball tag too.  It was a very fun weekend and I had a blast with MyKel!

Friday, September 16, 2011


Happy Friday friends!  The weekend is FINALLY here...I felt as if it would NEVER come!

Today is assessment Friday so we took tests in Math over Estimation & Rounding and in READING over characters and their moods and traits to describe them.  We were also able to complete our assignments from Reading Centers. 

This afternoon, Ms. Carter's friend came and presented a powerpoint to us about her career in Anthropology which was really neat!

I hope you have a great weekend and let's cheer on our C-A-T-S CATS!!!!

Mrs. Thomas

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Today is a FULL MOON!  Can you tell?  I sure felt like everyone had the crazies today!
Happy Tuesday Gents and Judies!  Today was a busy day with MAP testing.  MAP testing is a norm referenced test that gives your student a score.  This score is used for everything from grouping to showing what skills your student has mastery of, to showing what skills need more focus upon.  Before going, we went over the students' scores from the Spring 2011 test and then set our goals.

This morning was also orchestra which puts a big curve in our schedule since we have so many gone and we had a RESET friend as well so it was CRAZY hectic in here and we only had the chance to work on the Word Work rotation of our reading groups before leaving to MAP test at 9:30.  Several students did incredibly well on this test and I'm so proud of them for setting a goal and attaining it...way to go, friends!!!

PM activities:
Since we had MAP testing in the morning and were unable to have Science with Ms. Frederick and I didn't want us to get ahead (of Ms. Frederick's class, since I normally have math with them in the mornings) in math, we practiced with the CPS clickers on Study Island.  Try it out at home!  I had your student write down his/her login in the planner.
HOMEWORK: STUDY Vocabulary words - test is FRIDAY (Sept. 16th)!

  • Parent Night is TOMORROW NIGHT from 6-7.  Please make plans to attend!
  • HIGH ATTENDANCE DAY is this Thursday (September 15th). 
  • MAP testing continues for us NEXT Tuesday (Sept. 20).  Please make sure to not schedule any doctor's office visits or appointments that morning as it is difficult to find time to squeeze in makeups and will have your student missing valuable instruction time in order to do so.

Monday, September 12, 2011


Hello all!  Sorry I have been not so great at updating the past couple of days...last week was a waaaay busy week for me!  Then, (as you know), I was out for 2 days.  What you may not know though, is WHY I was out on Thursday...

I shared with the students today that I am having a baby!  I am due in April so this should not affect our school year much and I should be back to finish the last week of school with our students.  This is an exciting time for my family and I and I hope to have you sharing in our joy as well!  Please know that I look forward to continuing to devote every ounce of my energy towards your student's success in learning and mastery of our content, regardless of a little sweetpea growing within me :)

Anyway, onto our activities for our Manic Monday...
We are learning the difference between common and proper nouns.  We already know that nouns are a part of speech that recognize a person, place, or thing, but we are learning that basic nouns such as pencil, desk, pen, calendar, school, bus, car, paper, etc. are common nouns and do not need a capitalization.  However, nouns such as a person's name (Mrs. Thomas, Ashley, Mr. Kirk, etc.) need to be capitalized because they are a proper noun.  Also needing capitalization are things like specific places such as King's Island, Holiday World, Deep Springs Elementary, Kentucky,  Lexington, etc., as well as days of the week or months.
HOMEWORK: complete "Common and Proper Nouns" worksheet

This week, our focus of study is upon how a character's mood can change through a story.  We read the play, "Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing" (which is a short synopsis of the book) and discussed how Peter changed from the beginning of the story to the end.  We also wrote down our
vocabulary words for the week:

Our WOW! Words this week are:


Students got to participate in a WebQUEST with Ms. Frederick and then watch a "Planet Earth" video.

We worked on estimation and rounding to the nearest tens, hundreds, thousands, and ten-thousands.  We also worked on determining if an estimate is reasonable and justifying our thinking. 
HOMEWORK: completed in class.

Tomorrow is MAP testing for our class!!! So all students need to be here on time and ready to roll!  I know we will ROCK this test!
Parent Night (Open House) is THIS Wednesday, September 14, 2011.
HIGH ATTENDANCE DAY is THURSDAY, September 15, 2011.  We NEED ALLLLL DSE students here and ON TIME so we can be the school with the highest attendance in Fayette County!

Let's keep working on our behavior!  Thank you to K.P., H.S., V.A., and T.M. for being our SUB SUPERSTARS!!!  You folks ROCK our SOCKS off and we are so proud that you're a part of our class and representing us so well!!!

I love each of you and missed you so much while I was out!
Mrs. Thomas

Can you tell what this says?!?

Bob's Adventures with Quayveon

Quayveon and I had an awesome weekend because I got to go to his football game!  Quayveon's football team, the Bearcats, beat the Packers 35-0.  They "licked" them! (Did you hear me use one of your vocabulary words?!? I have never been to a real football game!  I was in awe of all of the rules, equipment, and excitement!  Especially mesmerizing to me was the uniforms with the shoulder pads and helmets and then real live tackling!  Ouch!  Doesn't that hurt?!?  Quayveon's football team is awesome!  I may be a football rookie, but I know that 35-0 is an amazing score!  I hear the UK Wildcats are playing this weekend, and I'm dying to go!  I'm a new football fan!!  Woooooo Hoooooooo!!!!


PS, Quayveon's really good!


Friday, September 2, 2011

Bob's Adventures with Jeremiah

When I was with Bob, I introduced him to my family. We played with my cousins, outside, and with my friends.  It was fun!  Unfortunately, Bob was a tad under the weather on Thursday so he didn't make it to school...maybe it was because of his "boo-boo" from falling out of the swing at recess on Wednesday?!?  You never know with that crazy guy!  Bob is a great companion!

Thursday, September 1, 2011


HAPPY SEPTEMBER EVERYONE!!!  Yay!!!!  Fall is rapidly approaching! 

We are still reviewing adverbs which are words that tell how, where, and when

We completed most assignments in our reading rotations today!

Students received worksheets from yesterday and cut out 3 different types of animals: crocodiles, hawks, and bats, and 3 different people told what adaptations had that enable them to survive.  Students then picked an animal and glued it onto journals and wrote in detail about an animal.

Today was REVIEW day because we have an assessment TOMORROW over place value!  To review, we went over workbook pages and the chapter review in the textbooks on pages 24, 25, and 26.
HOMEWORK: complete chapter review (optional - students will receive a treat for completion, but will not be counted off if they do not choose to complete the assignment.  HINT: it IS beneficial though since our test over place-value is TOMORROW!!!

I believe in ALL of you!!!
Mrs. Thomas