Saturday, August 25, 2012

Catching up

Okay, so we're back on with the blogging!  I am so, so, soooooo very, very sorry to not have updated this week!  I usually like to update every single day, but that is kind of hard with not having a computer set up at school yet...and then when I get home, I completely forget in the chaos that is having a 4 month old!  I now have a computer set up in our classroom and am hoping to get all the settings worked out and everything set up and adjusted accordingly.  Thus, you should get your daily blog posts each day this week!

I can't tell you how much I LOOOOOOVE hearing that the students are checking in on the blog and visiting after makes my week!  So YAAAAY for them being on the ball!  Now, if their dear old teach could just catch up...
this is Harvey, our class owl.  Be checking back weekly as he goes home with each of our students and writes about his travels here on our 'OWL'standing blog!
and this is Bob.  Bob is a very, VERY well traveled owl and has gone home and on vacation with many a student.  He may be journeying home with friends in our class as well so be looking for more updates of his travels too!  We just need to be very careful with him as where he IS very well traveled, he's a wee-bit worn and tattered and replacing him is impossible as his brand has "retired" him.  Bob is quite the special guy!
We had a TERRIFIC day on Friday and I am absolutely loving our class!  We have such sweeties!  Our students now switch to Mr. Featherston for reading while I teach his class math so I will do my best to ensure I stay on it with what we're working on in there.

We started working on our new unit which is estimation, rounding, and mental math.  Yesterday, we focused upon mental math, learning that that entails completing math in our minds, without having to use paper.  As 3rd graders, we have to learn the processes for completing this math in our head so we began practicing them yesterday.
We learned the strategy of making the numbers we are adding into smaller numbers easier to add with another through number bonds.  For example, in 56 + 33, we turn 56 into 50 + 6 and 33 into 30 + 3.  Then, we add the numbers with 0 on the ends together (50 + 30 = 80) and then the numbers in the ones places (3 + 6 = 9).  Finally, we add the two sums together: 80 + 9 = 89.  While it may sound complicated, the students are learning ways to break down equations and make completing them mentally much easier.
Here are some examples used in class:
the circular models are the number bonds

HOMEWORK: none, except packet due next Friday (Aug. 31st)

PM activities:
We had our first LUNCH BUNCH!  Lunch Bunch is an incentive for students in meeting expectations through the week (getting planner signed each night, completing homework, not talking when teacher is talking, etc.) and those who do not get 3 strikes against them may each lunch in the room while watching a movie.  We had a GREAT time!!!
We had our very first class meeting and WOW! is all I can say!  We have some sweet, sweet kiddos!  I just love my fantastic babes!  I feel that establishing a sense of community is essential for creating an atmosphere where the students feel supported and comfortable to learn in a safe, nurturing environment.  In these class meetings, students write at least one concern for the class (may not use names or specifics and must be a situation that concerned the class as a whole), and at least one compliment in which they may use names AND specifics.  I cannot tell you how genuine, kind, and thoughtful our compliments for each other were.  It was so sensational hearing all of the amazing things that friends were saying to classmates.  Needless to say, it was a tremendous class meeting and I cannot wait for another next Friday!

Finally, I need to give a shout-out to Chloe, Griffin, and Caleb for getting 100% A+s on their math tests this past week!  Go guys, we are so, so PROUD of YOU!!!
Hoot hoot hooray
In order to get half credit back on your math test grade, you MUST complete the wrong answer analysis and have it signed by an adult at home.  Without these requirements completed, your grade is as currently stands.
Homework packet was passed out yesterday and is due by NEXT Friday, August 31st.
All sign sheets MUST be returned by Friday, August 31st.
Our next spelling test is Friday, August 31st.
There is NO school Monday, September 3rd, 2012 in observance of Labor Day
Picture Day is September 26th

With kiddos like these, how could you NOT L-O-V-E Garth?!?
I LOVE her style!  And apparently, so do many of our classmates...she got tons of shout-outs in our Class Meeting!

sweet, sweet girlies!
I love all my sweet babes and hope you're having a fantabulous weekend!  I miss you already!
Mrs. Thomas
Bombs away

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