Warm Fuzzy Celebration

Dear Parents, 

Our warm fuzzy compliment bucket is full and we will be celebrating after lunch tomorrow with a movie.  The children may also bring a stuffed animal that will fit in their bookbag and they may bring an electronics device that does not have internet (no interact access available:)  If you would like to send in a special treat for the class this would also be fine (with no nuts please).  

Monday Helpful Tidbits:)


Happy Monday:)

A few important reminders from our wonderful administration here at East Side: 


     *Early Dismissal will begin tomorrow at 12:10 not 12:30 as it did last year:) 


  • Transportation changes should always be made with the goal of keeping children safe:
    • MUST be made in writing
    • If something changes during the day, teachers are NOT allowed to take texts, emails, or phone calls to make the change.
      • Parents MUST call the front office.
  • NO BEST Clubs/ Enrichment/ After school activities on the following dates below:
    • Thursday, October 11 (tomorrow)
    • During Conference Week (October 15-19)


Thank you for helping us keep your children safe!

Underwater Update for the Week of October 8th

Dear Parents, 

Hope everyone had a great weekend and enjoyed the beautiful weather:) Thank you so much for signing up for a conference time on Signup Genius and also for returning your conference confirmation.  I really look forward to sharing your child’s academic and social progress for quarter one:) I included a message below regarding our Foundation Annual Campaign, so please read if you haven’t had a chance.  Our foundation supports so many important instructional needs here at East Side, and we want our class participation to be 100% this year! 

We have a very busy week ahead:)  Please see specials schedule in the Pages section above for the next two weeks and please see important instructional highlights below. 

Have a wonderful week!! 

Love, Ms. Henson:)   

Reading Workshop:   This week we will begin our nonfiction reading unit entitled Navigating Nonfiction:)  We will launch our unit this week with discovering strategies that help us to effectively preview nonfiction information texts so that we may discover author’s purpose.  We will also begin to discover strategies for determining main ideas and details of sections within our new nonfiction texts.  Reading responses with include boxes and bullets organizers for discovery of main ideas and details. 

Writing Workshop:  We will launch our new writing unit on informational writing:)  The children love to compose pieces that display their expertise with a particular skill, talent, or area of knowledge.  We will discover strategies for researching our topics and will complete organizers to narrow our topics this week.  

Math Number Talks and Math Workshop:  This week we will practice visual representations of multiplication and division equations.  The children can build on their knowledge of second grade addition – subtraction fact families as they learn that multiplication – division fact families also exist for our multiplication and division facts.   Our visual representations will include arrays, unit bar models, and repeated addition and subtraction equations.  

Social Studies:  Goods and Services:  We will discover how goods and services are important to our economy and will brainstorm examples of each.    

Science:   We will complete our open notebook summative of rocks and soil types on Monday:)  

Grammar, Cursive, and Phonics:  How do we use irregular plurals and abstract nouns effectively in our writing?  Lowercase b,d, f will be letters we will practice in cursive this week:)  Our phonics review will include vowel teams and r-controlled vowels review. 


Foundation Campaign Kick-off

Dear Parents,   

It is time once again for our annual Foundation Campaign kick-off:)   An informational flyer arrived home in your child’s folder on Monday describing all of the wonderful donations that our East Side foundation makes to our school each year.  Personally, I have had the opportunity to participate in four weeks of reading and writing workshop training during my nine years at East Side, and I also have the wonderful selection of books in my library because of our foundation’s support.  Additionally, I have received additional Orton-Gillingham phonics training, Greg Tang math training, and Engage NY math training during my time at East Side.  I can’t say enough about the support our foundation provides to enhance the instruction and classroom supplies for all of our teachers.  Please consider making an annual donation to support both our school and the needs of our classroom!  I just received math versatiles for our math stations this year too, and plan to request refresher books for our library in our room.  Your support will be appreciated so much!!! Thank you!!!!:)    Ms. Henson

Falcons Friday

Dear Parents, 

This Friday is Falcons Celebration Friday.  All of the children at East Side will receive a wristband gift from our favorite team, so please try to have your child wear their favorite Falcons shirt this Friday!!!

Underwater Update for the Week of October 1st


Dear Parents,   

Hope everyone had a fun-filled break!! 🙂  It was so nice to see everyone this morning, and to hear about so many exciting adventures during the break:)   Thank you so much for signing up for a conference time on Signup Genius:)  I only have a few families who have not yet signed up.  Today conference confirmation letters will arrive home, and please just sign the form and return in your child’s yellow folder on Tuesday.  This form will confirm the conference time that you signed up for on Sign Up Genius.  I look forward to meeting with everyone soon, and can’t wait to share your child’s areas of growth during our first quarter together!  Please note specials for the week and important instructional highlights below.   I have included homework tips in the homework tips page at the top of our website:)

Have a wonderful week!! 

Ms. Henson


Specials for the Week of October 1st:

Monday: P.E.    

Tuesday: Maker Space

Wednesday: STEM Lab

Thursday:  P.E. 

Friday:  Guidance 


Instructional Highlights for the Week:   


Reading Workshop:   

This week, we will finish up Stone Fox, our anchor text, and will revisit identification of character traits, author’s craft, and summarizing fiction texts.  We will create advertisements for our anchor text this week as well, and this will be the perfect culminating activity as we end our first reading unit, Building A Reading Life.  On Tuesday, we will complete our summative assessment for our first reading unit.   We will also have opportunities this week to practice our third grade comprehension checklist for answering questions about fiction texts.  I will be sending this home with homework beginning next week:)


Writing Workshop:     

We will finish up publishing our true stories, and this week we will especially focus on composition of our ending.  We will study our 3rd grade narrative rubric expectations as we establish strong closure for our story ending.  We will also revisit use of figurative language in our story body and will engage in our final editing and revisions.   I am so proud of everyone for their hard work during our first writing unit!!


 Math Workshop and Number Talks:   

Number Talks this week will focus on creating multiplication equations to represent repeated addition sentences.  For example, for the equation 2 + 2 + 2 + 2, the matching multiplication equation would be 4 X 2 (or 4 groups of 2) .  We will continue to practice 2-step word problems this week that require us to use the two operations of addition and subtraction. Stations will include subtraction review, visual representations of multiplication equations (arrays), error analysis of multiplication arrays, and two-step word problems. 



We will finish up our study of soil types this week, and our summative assessment will be next Tuesday. 


Social Studies:   

Review of Goods and Services in our economy.


Grammar, Spelling, and Cursive:  Use of possessive nouns, /ir/ controlled “r” review, and lowercase cursive letters.

Underwater Update for the Week of September 17th

Dear Parents:)

Tomorrow is our last day of testing!  We will take the IOWA social studies and science sections tomorrow, and will then be officially finished with testing!  The children have worked very hard, and were a little tired today after the three math sections.  We will be looking forward to getting back to our typical daily schedule on Wednesday.   Your child has a homework packet this week that includes a few math subtraction practice problems, a nightly reading response log, and a spelling menu.  For the math homework, your child may use either the expanded strategy or number line strategy to subtract:)  Please note the specials schedule for the week below and also please note important instructional highlights for the week:)  Have a great week!!   

Ms. Henson:)


Week of September 17th Specials Schedule: 

Monday: Guidance    

Tuesday: Art

Wednesday: P.E.

Thursday:  Computer Lab

Friday:  Music     


Important Instructional Highlights for the Week:

Reading Workshop: This week, we will continue our study of inside character traits as we finish up our anchor text, Stone Fox.  We have worked hard to brainstorm inside traits of our characters in our stories, both positive and negative, and will discover how these traits can change and can also help us to make better predictions.  Examples of positive inside character traits would be: Compassion, creativity, bravery, patience, etc.  Negative trait examples would include: Arrogant, unfriendly, etc.  We will be making character trait maps this week that show changes in Little Willy and the other characters in our anchor text and will discuss why these trait changes occurred. 

Writing Workshop:  During writing workshop this week, we will focus on developing the heart of our true stories.  We will discover how identifying the “true meaning” or underlying meaning of our story really assists us with further developing the meat of our true stories.  We will focus on paragraphing our event sequences, and will begin to publish our pieces:)  

Math:  Minilessons in math this week will focus on subtraction strategies such as using the expanded strategy and open number line to subtract 2 and 3 digit numbers across zeros.  For example, in the problem 300 -122, we must move 100 from the hundreds place so that we can have 90 in the tens and 10 in the ones places.  This can be a tricky concept and takes practice.  Our number talks will focus on subtraction strategies as will our problem of the day each day.  Stations and small groups will also focus on subtraction strategies.  

Phonics and Grammar:  This week we will focus on the ending blends, -tch and -ch.  We will also review spellings for common third grade sight words and will review our floss rule (e.g. When to use -ff, -ll, -ss, and -zz at the end of words)  

Science: This week we will finish up characteristics of rocks and will discover important properties of soil types.  

Cursive: f, g, h, i

Underwater Update for Ms. Henson’s Class for Week of September 10th

Dear Parents, 

I am so proud of my explorers for their hard work during CogAt testing!!:)   Thank you for all of your support by ensuring early bedtimes.  Thank you so much too for sending in snacks and treats for the class this past week!!  We will have a normal schedule for this coming Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, and then we will begin the Iowa Test of Basic Skills on Thursday, September 13th.  The IOWA test is a four day test, so we will test this Thursday and Friday and then will finish up next Monday and Tuesday.   The IOWA test is a little longer each day than the CogAt, so your child may be a little more tired at the end of the day.  Our homework packet will be lighter and will be similar to this past week’s packet with only reading and math:)  Please carefully review important upcoming dates and instructional highlights below.  Thank you again for all of your support this week!!! 


Ms. Henson       


Important Upcoming Dates/Assignments:   

A Branches of Government Study Guide will arrive home on Monday and our test will be on Friday.  The children should remember all of the information from our class activities and assignments, so I know everyone will do very well!!   

Our first math summative will arrive home on Monday.  Please review and note comments I have written and return this test in your child’s folder on Tuesday.  I am very proud of everyone for mastering our third grade addition strategies!!!  

Student Council Update: A form will arrive home on Monday with guidelines for running for Student Council.  Your child will need to have their speech made by this Friday, September 14th:)  I sent a message earlier with all of the specifics, and just make sure that your child has opportunities to practice their speech in front of you.  In their speech, they will need to state their campaign platform (ways they could realistically improve our school) and they may bring a visual aid if they wish (a decorated poster).  The speech should be somewhere around 2-5 minutes, but I am flexible with this. 

Planner and Yellow Folder Reminders:  Our yellow folders are required to be sent home on Mondays as this is our East Side school policy for delivery of all important information, work samples, etc.  I also choose to send them home any day that there is something important that needs to go home.  Please ensure that your child bring his/her yellow folder with them to school each day in case there is anything important that needs to go home.  I keep the folders on Fridays so that I can write comments over the weekend:)  Please ensure that you read the comments that I have written and initial in the space provided.  You have done an awesome job of this BTW:) About half of our third grade team uses the planner as a method to communicate what we are doing in class since most of us send homework packets on Monday that are due on Friday.  We do not write daily assignments in planners typically.  We do include any study guides being sent or any special upcoming events.  I would also additionally include this on the website:)  


Tuesday Update for September 4th

Dear Parents,   

I hope you had a wonderful holiday weekend!!  Your child will have a little less homework this week due to testing:)  Please make early bedtimes this week a priority, and ensure that your child has time for a good breakfast each day.  The Test of Cognitive Abilities (CogAT) will begin tomorrow through this Friday, September 7th.  The test lasts about 1 hour to 1 and 1/2 hours each morning.   I will be teaching a shortened version of all of our subjects this week due to our schedule change. 

In reading this week, we are finishing up our anchor text, Stone Fox, and will focus on predicting theme or central message, summarization, and use of context clues to determine meanings of tricky words.  In science this week, we will finish up our study of rock types and physical attributes of rocks.  During writing workshop we will continue to make revisions to our True Stories, as we revise by adding feeling-filled dialogue and needed elaborations to our pieces.  We will also focus on paragraph organization to ensure that our True Stories have a clear event sequence with needed transitions. In math, we will begin to focus on visual representations for multiplication equations.  It is important to emphasize with your child that the equation 3 X 2 = 6  should be read as “three groups of two equals 6”.  Understanding simple multiplication equations as repeated addition of equal groups makes multiplication so much easier.  We will work on three representations for our multiplication equations:  1) Arrays 2) Unit bars and 3) equal group circles with dots. This is very different from how we as adults learned our multiplication facts, but understanding the concept of equal groups lays a much stronger foundation for future multi-digit multiplication.   

Planner Points to Note:  Also ask your child to share what they have written in their planner each day, as we write important notes regarding what we did in class for the day.  Since we have a homework packet at the beginning of the week, we don’t write individual assignments in our planner each day.  About half of the third grade teachers use homework packets instead of nightly homework, so those of us who use homework packets use the planner for instructional updates.  Any important notes will also be included here as needed.   

Student Council:  If your child would like to run for student council, they may prepare a speech to share with the class with a description of their campaign platform.  This would include any realistic ideas for how they could improve our school:) Your child may bring in any props that they wish (posters, etc.) and the speech is no more than 4 minutes.  Some children also like to hand out a small flag or treat:)  Please don’t spend money though, and I encourage that all items brought in for the speech be handmade:)  Most children do like to include a poster that is used as an introductory piece and platform visual. We will have our election on Wednesday, September 12th so your child will need to have their speech completed and presented by Tuesday, September 11th. 

Happy Labor Day Weekend!

Dear Parents, 

Hope you have a wonderful three day weekend!!   When we return on Tuesday, we will have a typical schedule.  On Wednesday 9/5, Thursday 9/6, and Friday 9/7, we will take our CogAt test each morning.  The test lasts between one hour and one hour and a half each day:)  Please ensure that your child is on time each day, as we will begin testing each day at 8:00 a.m.  Also, please ensure that a healthy breakfast and early bedtimes are a focus as always:)  Thank you to our snack volunteers who will be sending in snacks next week:)

Homework packets will only include a reading log and math due to our short week:)  Our schedule will include shortened time periods for our subjects next week due to testing. 

The children had so much fun during STEM day today!!!  Each team got to vote to decide who would bring each rock display case home, so if your child is bringing this home today I know you will enjoy seeing all of their hard work!!   I was so impressed with the children’s ability to work politely and effectively in teams.  STEM day is such a valuable opportunity to strengthen not only our science, technology, and math skills, but also our social skills!!!  We are now a STEM Cobb County certified school, so this was a very special celebration opportunity for us at the end of the day!!! 

Safe travels and enjoy your three days together! 

Ms. Henson:)