Week of 3/25-3/29/19

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We’ve made it to the last week prior to Spring break.  Just 5 short days until we have a week off.  Let’s make these the best 5 days of the school year!  We have a lot to cover in these five days.  So, without further ado, let’s move on!

Math – We will be continuing to focus on fractions and decimals this week.  We will be taking a posttest during our groups this week to see how much we have improved in our abilities to work with fraction decimals, as well as adding and subtracting decimals.  There is really no way to “study” for this test, other than pay attention in class.  After spring break, we will begin working on Geometry and Measurement.

Reading – we will be continuing with our novel study of the book, The Hope Chest, which is about segregation and the 19th amendment.  I think the students are really enjoying the book, not to mention improving their vocabulary tremendously.  We are focusing on story elements through this story, as well as synonyms and antonyms.  We will also be taking the Reading Inventory this week.

Writing – we will be continuing to work on fictional narratives, as well as have one more lesson with Dr. Jones-Pringle in preparation for the upcoming GA Milestones.  Please be sure that you are completing some of the practice that can be found on the Pitner website.

Spelling – we will not be having a spelling test, nor a spelling contract this week.  Since we do bi-weekly spelling tests, I didn’t want to start the students with a spelling list this week and then be on vacation next week.  We will do at least 1, if not 2 more spelling tests this school year.  Please look for the spelling contract to come home the Monday after Spring Break.

Grammar – our mentor text this week comes from a book called Pinduli.  This week, we will continue working on compound, complex, and simple sentences, but we will also be talking about relative pronouns.

Social Studies – The students will be having their test on Westward Expansion on Friday.  A study guide was sent home in your child’s graded paper folder on Friday, 3/22/19, along with their report card and a permission slip about a field trip to Sparkles.  If for some reason, your child did not bring his/her study guide home in their graded paper folder, you can download another copy below.  We will also be going to the media center for a reader’s theater on Westward Expansion on Friday with Ms. Stanley.  

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Thursday, 3/28 – Artome Art Show – 4 – 7 p.m.
Friday, 3/29 – Westward Expansion Test
Friday, 3/29 – Field Trip form/money for Sparkles Field Trip is due.
Friday, 3/29 – Jump Rope for Heart during PE
Monday, 4/1-Friday, 4/5 – Spring Break – no school for students/staff
Beginning Monday, 4/8 we will have a new schedule.  Please look for the new schedule to be posted to the blog soon.
Monday, 4/8 – Color Run Kick-off Assembly
Tuesday, 4/9 – In School Field Trip (replacement to Willy Wonka at South Cobb)
Thursday, 4/11 – GA Milestones begins for 5th grade students
Friday, 4/12 – Field Trip to Sparkles Skating Rink
Thursday, 4/25 – STEAM Night 6 – 8 p.m.
Friday, 5/10 – Color Run/Career Day
Monday, 5/13 – Field Day for 4th/5th grade

Week of 3/18-3/22

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Happy Birthday Mrs. Homer!  We hope you have an excellent birthday!

It’s hard to believe that we only have 10 school days until Spring Break.  It’s going by so fast!  I’m not sure where the time goes/has gone.  It doesn’t seem like it’s time for our little ducks to leave the nest and move on to 5th grade yet!  Well, there’s not enough time to get sentimental now.  I guess I need to wipe up my tears and move on to what we’ll be covering this week in class.  So, without further ado, let’s move on.

Math – this week, we will be continuing to work with decimals.  Last week, we quickly learned how to convert fractions to decimals and decimals to fractions within tenths and hundredths.  Then, we learned to add and subtract the decimals.  This week, we will spend time comparing decimals and ordering the decimals from least to greatest and greatest to least.

Reading – This week, we will begin a class novel, called The Hope Chest.  We will be reading the book in class, after we have completed some introductory activities the early part of the week.  Please be sure to ask your children tomorrow (on Monday) if they have figured out or been able to “infer” what the book is about through the activities that we complete.

Writing – This week, we will begin my favorite genre of writing.   We will begin working on fictional narratives.  Unlike personal narratives, fictional can be realistic, historical, or flat out make believe.  The students will begin the unit by completing a task card activity where they will need to read the task card and determine if the passage on the card is a fictional narrative or some other type of writing.  After we have a better understanding of what fictional writing is, we will create our fictional writing notebooks and begin focusing on the characters and settings of our stories.  We will still be working on completing some “prompted” writing throughout this process as well.

Grammar – due to the various activities outside of our control last week (field trip on Tuesday and Early Release on Wednesday), we didn’t get as far as I would have liked in Crickwing, so I decided last week to put it off until this week.  Last week, the students watched a you tube video of Crickwing, so this week, we will spend a little extra time working on the various parts of our mentor sentence and we will take our invitation to edit quiz on Friday.

Spelling – contracts are due on Friday of this week.  We will also be having our spelling test on Friday of this week, so please be sure you are practicing your spelling skills each and every day.  These contracts really make a difference in the students spelling ability when it comes time for the tests.  If for some reason, your child did not bring home his/her spelling contract, you can download another copy here.  

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Social Studies – Last week, in our discussion of Westward Expansion, we focused on the lower half of the “soon to be US.” This week, we will continue our focus on Westward Expansion, but we will be focusing on the pioneers who began moving west on the Oregon Trail.  We will be completing some more structured notes and will be having a test next Friday, 3/29 on Westward Expansion.  I will be sending home a study guide no later than this coming Friday, 3/22 in your child’s graded paper folder.  Please begin studying as soon as you get the study guide.  All the answers to the test will be on the study guide, but probably not in the same order as the study guide.

Wednesday, 3/20 – Kindergarten Registration will be happening in the media center.  If you have an upcoming Kindergartener, please be sure to check the Pitner website for details.
Thursday, 3/21 – Ms. Whitton, our counselor, will be coming to our class for our monthly Guidance lesson.
Friday, 3/22 – Our “State Fair.”  We will be attending the “State Fair” from 1:30 – 2:00.  Thank you for all the parents who have volunteered their time to come in and help.  I know Ms. Stanley appreciates it.  Also, on Friday, 3/22, the third quarter report cards will be coming home.  Please be sure to sign and return the envelope.  The report card is yours to keep.


Week of 3/11 – 3/15

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Wow!  We have another busy week this week.  We have our field trip to the Cobb Safety Village on Tuesday and Early Release on Wednesday.  Please be sure to read all the way to the end of this blog to know all you need to be sure to have for this week.  On Tuesday, please be sure you are wearing blue jeans/pants, your green class t-shirt (or a green shirt that you might have), as well as bring your lunch if you told me you would be bringing your lunch from home.  Your lunch needs to be placed in a disposable lunch bag.  You don’t want to have to walk around with a lunchbox while we’re there.  On Wednesday, for Early Release, please be sure you know how you are going home.  We will be dismissing around 12:20.

Math – this week, we will begin working with decimals and converting fractions to decimals and decimals to fractions.  Decimals seem to be a little easier, because we associate decimals with money.  This really seems to help the students get a better understanding.  However, if your student is having difficulty, please be sure to check out the math “how to” videos here on the blog.  On Wednesday, we will be taking the third quarter full math touchstone.  Please be sure you know how to convert fractions!

Reading – this week, we will be focusing on context clues.  Just in case you’re not familiar with context clues, that’s when you come across a new word and have to use the words around that new word to help you determine the meaning of the word.  We will also be taking our third quarter ELA touchstone.

Writing – we will be working on the “ABCD” method of writing extended responses that Dr. Jones-Pringle introduced us to on Friday.  “ABCD” is an acronym for the students to be able to write more toward what is expected on the GA Milestones.  A stands for “attack the prompt”, B stands for “brainstorm”, C stands for “Choose the characteristics and structure of your essay”, and finally D stands for “Draft.”  The students will have the opportunity to practice typing their final drafts, some in class, but unfortunately, after Spring Break, testing begins for the other grade levels and we won’t have access to the laptops to practice typing, so after Spring Break, I’m going to be asking that the students practice their typing at home.

Spelling – This week, the students will be receiving their Sort #13 spelling lists.  However, if your student does not bring his/her contract home, please feel free to download another copy below.

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Grammar – This week, our mentor text is Crickwing, by Janelle Cannon.  Our grammar focus is writing complex sentences and what makes them complex.

Social Studies – This week, we will continue our unit on Westward Expansion, but we will be focusing on The Mexican American War (the battle at the Alamo), as well as the Oregon Trail.  The students will be completing structured notes on these two topics. Also, please be sure that you completing the two pages in the Fire Safety Booklet that your students should have brought home to you last Tuesday, after our presentation.

Tuesday – 3/12 – Field Trip to Fire Safety Village 
Wednesday, 3/13 – Early Release – Dismissal at 12:20
Friday, 3/15 – Any extra credit projects are due.
Friday, 3/22 – 3rd quarter report cards to go home.


Week of 3/4 – 3/8/19

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Wow!  What a week last week was!  We had so many things going on, it was hard to stay afloat.  I hope everyone is safe and sound from these lovely storms we’re currently getting.  I love being able to sit on my couch and read a book.  I’ve gotten really into reading lately.  I loved having the opportunity to just have DEAR (Drop Everything and Read) time last week, because like the students, I dropped everything that I had going on and stopped to read in my newest book.  It’s a very exciting book. Well, that’s enough about boring old me, let’s move on to what we have on the agenda this week.

Math – This week, we will be focusing on creating and reading line plot graphs, as well as learning to multiply fractions by a whole number.  We will be working with some models, as well as just multiplying.  This concept has not changed since we were younger, but just in case you have forgotten, please feel free to view the various math “How to” videos located on the “Math ‘How To'” tab across the top of this blog.  We just multiply across.  For example, if we are multiplying 3 X 1/4, we would multiply 3 X 1, which is 3 and then move the denominator over because 3 is the same as 3X1.

Reading – This week, we will continue working on cross curricular reading by working on some test prep.  We will be reading a paired passage on The Oregon Trail.  With paired passages, many times, it’s a nonfiction text (journal entry, diary entry, section from a non-fiction text) and a fictional story related to the same topic.  Then, there will be questions aske about both passages and there will be a constructed response for these two passages in which the students will need to take information from both passages to fully answer the question.  The students will be expected to provide text evidence, use correct capitalization and punctuation. Please encourage your students to begin doing this with all of their written responses to questions.  We’re in fourth grade now and sometimes, a quick one word/one sentence answer won’t get them the full credit they need.

Writing – we are still working on writing non-fiction texts.  We will be continue to work on this during this upcoming week, as well as have an opportunity to work with Dr. Jones-Pringle for strategies to help ensure we are answering the constructed responses and extended responses to the best of our ability.  We will also be working on the website, No Red Ink (www.noredink.com) to help build up our grammar skills.  If your student is complaining that he or she has nothing to do, please encourage them to go to www.noredink.com, and work on those typing/grammar skills.

Spelling – we will be taking our Sort 12 test on Friday, March 8th.  Please be sure your student is completing the spelling contract and turning it in on Friday.  I don’t need to have all the activities.  You can just initial their sheet saying they have completed them.  If for some reason, your child didn’t bring home his/her spelling list, please feel free to download another copy here

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Grammar – this week, we will be using the mentor text Night Rabbits and our grammar focus will be on similes.  We have talked about similes prior, but just in case your student doesn’t remember what a simile is, that’s when the author is comparing two things using the words “like” or “as.”  For example, his hair is as red as a fox, or the stars shined like diamonds in the night sky.  There is a quick video that we like to watch from The Bazillions, called “Similes and Metaphors.”  We watch this video each time we talk about similes and metaphors and the students really seem to enjoy it.  You can watch it for yourself here.  Enjoy!  We’ll be taking our “invitation to edit” quiz on Night Rabbits on Friday, along with our spelling test.

Science – we have been learning about how light and sound move through air.  Last week, we also made some cameras to represent opaque, translucent, and transparent sources.  We completed a quick sort in which we had to sort out the various materials into one of these forms.  We will be having a science test on Friday, going over all these concepts that we have been learning the last couple of weeks.  Students were given a completed study guide in their Graded Paper folders on Friday.  However, if your child didn’t bring home said study guide, please feel free to download another copy here.  The test will contain the same information that you will see on the study guide.  This test will count double, so please don’t wait until Thursday night to try to study.

Monday, 3/4-Friday, 3/8 Pitner will be holding their Spring Book Fair.  The students were able to preview the book fair on Friday and they have found some very interesting titles.  Please consider sending your child with some money to make a purchase at the book fair.  Students without money, will not be able to go.  They are expected to come to the classroom and complete morning procedures prior to going.

Tuesday, March 5th – The Cobb County Fire Safety Village will be sending out a representative to come and discuss Fire Safety with us.  During this presentation, students will be receiving a Fire Safety Booklet.  The quizzes in this booklet will need to be completed and turned in prior to our visit the following Tuesday.  Please be sure your student is working on this each night.  It will be posted on the board as part of their homework this week, as well.

Thursday, March 7th – our annual Bedtime, Books, and Brownies will be happening!  This is a great family opportunity and if you haven’t had the chance to come and experience it, please do so Thursday night.  You can come in your jammies, hear a couple of bedtime stories, eat a yummy brownie, get a nice cold, glass of milk, and be ready for bed when you get home.  This is one of my favorite activities that the school does each year.  We hope to see you then!

Friday, March 8th – Science test on Light and Sound.  A study guide was provided to your students in their Graded paper folder on Friday.  If they don’t have it, please feel free to scroll up to the Science section and download another copy.  This test will be counted as “double,” because students have had a completed study guide provided to them to study from.

Friday, March 15th – Last day of the third quarter. If you have requested an extra credit project, please be sure they are turned in no later than Friday, 3/15.  No late projects will be accepted.