Week 4 Eclipses all others ;)

Monday the 21st was a fun day to be at school! Lots of kids checked out early or spent the day with their family to view the eclipse. My kids stayed home with Mr. Rob so that they could see the event together.

Kevin and Pinkie had funny solar eclipse tee shirts on. Jared said it was too hot to wear his back tee shirt.

My friends, the Eljiche family, were in North Georgia. I really loved their picture of the Bailey Beads!

Mr. Eljiche also got a great photo of the corona!

NASA had a post about the eclipse as well. They were lucky enough to get a picture with the ISS (International Space Station) passing by during the event.

Can you see the astronauts on the ISS waving? 😉

As teacher friend of mine caught glimpses of the eclipse shadows on the ground.

This is a phenomena that only happens during a solar eclipse.

Mr. Rob got a picture of the shadows as well at the Homerhouse.

This picture was captured by Patriot student teacher Willi in 5th grade.

Thanks for sharing this wonderful photo!  We had an amazing day!

MATH: We continued our place value work and completed a place value placemat to go with our place value town. We worked on addition and subtraction of numbers with and without regrouping.

MATH PREVIEW: We will be working on comparing numbers, ordering numbers and rounding numbers. Fast Fact Fluency Friday is in full swing. Please work with your child on their multiplication facts. They need to know their facts as quick as they can recall their name.

Students working in pairs on their place value placemats.

Great team work!

WRITING: We worked on finding “juicy” description words to help build our burgers. We worked on using our senses to create pictures in our minds (and in the minds of our readers) with our words. “Writers write for readers to read. Better writers make better readers and both make better spellers.”~Mrs. Homer 🙂

WRITING PREVIEW: We will continue to write more complex sentences using our senses and identify the common and proper nouns within those sentences. As always, we will work on capitalization & punctuation. We will also model to write and rewrite/revise/edit to make our sentences more descriptive.

Students trying to find just the right words to describe their yummy ELA leasson.

Students are always welcome to come to the ladybug and share their writing for their peers. Our author’s chair procedure helps students realize when they my be using “invisible ink” versus “thinking with inking”. If it is confusing to read out loud, it might be confusing to the reader. Students share glows & grows with their peers and work on their speaking & listening skills as well.

SCIENCE: We worked on weather, clouds, eclipse and states of matter.

SCIENCE PREVIEW: We will continue with the weather unit, review and have a test on FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 1st. Study guides were sent home. Check Mrs. Poulos’ blog if you need an online copy of the study guide. 

One of my friends said that they saw a t-rex…do you see it?

Do you see Goofy?

OLT (outdoor learning time) is the BEST! 🙂

READING: Students worked hard on their close reading. Unfinished work was completed first so that we could have Fun Friday. Work first, then play.

READING PREVIEW: We will be finishing up the DRA assessments, hopefully. Then we can implement the Read 180 lab for Read 180 next week.

Thank you for sharing your children with me. We had another great week at Pitner! As always, if you have questions or concerns, please email me: tracey.homer@cobbk12.org

Solar Eclipse Week preview and Recap Week 3

Happy Eclipse Day!

Image result for solar eclipse

Absences due to viewing the solar eclipse WILL BE EXCUSED by CCSD with a note from home.

Here is the link for NASA’s live stream:


Solar Eclipse of the heart, 80’s day on Friday was a blast. I channeled my inner Martha McFly for the day. What memories. 🙂

Even during Fun Friday behavior reward we do some learning. Lots of the kiddos in class love to play chess. It is such a great game for logic and thinking skills. Plus we work on social skills and chess finesse. We will have the Chess Club folks come in and do an in house field trip in the next few weeks. I think the students will really enjoy this.

MATH: This week we worked on place value with multiplying by multiples of 10 and dividing by multiples of 10. We did addition with and with regrouping. Problems contained decimals as well. Math journals were collected for a grade. The grade book is still being set up and I am working with admin to get this resolved. I will have grades inputted as soon as possible.

MATH PREVIEW: We will continue working with addition and subtraction with and with out regrouping as well as with and without decimals. We will move on to rounding. I am also trying to get the new Conceptua math program up and running which will provide the students a way to practice their skills using technology.

SCIENCE: We worked on The Water Cycle this week and introduced clouds.  I have a plethora of videos on my symbaloo that we used during instruction. Students are taking notes in their science journals.

SCIENCE PREVIEW: This week will start off with the eclipse excitement. Due to the CCSD’s announcement that the glasses ordered may not be ISO certified, ALL classes will be watching the live stream together. We will continue studying clouds and move in to weather instruments. A study guide will come home before the test on September 1st over this first unit.

READING: This week was a mixture of baseline data and close reading. Students did the San Diego quick list of words and I was very impressed with their progress from last year. We also did close reading which is when we read a passage together, number the paragraphs, read the passage a second time and get up close and personal with the reading. Students are required to read the question, go back into the text to find the answer and then highlight or underline the answer. Before they move on to the next question they must write the number of the answer next to the highlighted text. This is standard procedure in my class and is expected on all reading passages. I am unable to read passages to them during assessments, so I need to know that they are able to locate and cite the answer within the text.

READING PREVIEW: We will continue with close reading on the eclipse and those will be collected as a grade as we modeled the first two passages together last week. We will continue to work in the reading lab on DRA baseline data.

Reading along with the book on CD is a great strategy to work on fluency. I have a few programs on my symbaloo that will do this. Audible is another program that has books on tape but there is a fee. I also find CDs and books at the thrift store. This counts as reading optional homework since it helps with reading accuracy.

Word lists are more fun to read with a friend. 😉

WRITING: Since students are coming to me from so many locations we have adjusted our classroom procedures to include a quick prompt each day. As students come in they are to get their journals, read the three prompt choices on the board and begin silently planning/ writing on the prompt of their choice. This is all done in the journal so that we can gain experience and build stamina for writing longer pieces. These will also be graded using the rubric we developed together as a class. We started a squiggle writing prompt that will be completed over the next week. For ELA II we do the W.O.D Word Of the Day. This helps with parts of speech and expand vocabulary (one of the CAFE strategies).

WRITING PREVIEW: We will continue with daily quick prompts for the first part of class. Squiggle prompts will be written and re-written using all of our senses.  We will start on Monday with sight and continue on through the week with sound, smell, touch and finally taste. Friday is my favorite day as we get to devour a treat and describe it in detail. 😉


Each week I try and reach out to parents about student performance. Most of the time this is behavioral and if I have minor academic concerns. If I have more pressing concerns that need to be addressed before the Friday folders, I will most definitely contact you. So far, this class is amazing and I am really proud of them. This will be a great year!

As always, please reach out to me if you have any questions, comments or concerns. I can be reached at: tracey.homer@cobbk12.org

Week 2 Recap and Preview

Week two was terrific!  We had lots of policies and procedures to review and rehearse. The students have done amazing with following the rules. THANK YOU to everyone that came out to Open House.

We had some getting to know you activities including the Me Museum and the blue bag sharing. I had fun getting to know your child or learning more about them if I had them last year.


Math got messy this week…and that’s ok. I like to dump out the manipulatives and we had fun using them for place value work.

Students worked together and were showing what they know on the board. We then worked together to make sure they had set up the problem, was it reasonable and was the answer correct.

Trying to come up with random numbers for place value can be boring. We used dice, cards, flip charts, styrofoam cups and manipulatives to randomize our large numbers.

We also worked on our IANs (Inter-Active Notebooks). Students cut and glue fold-able worksheets into their journals. We use our IAN as support for the standards we are working on and a reference for our independent work time. Journals were collected for a grade. As soon as the grade books are set up I will update the system.


Students will continue to build their IANs, work on multiplying and dividing by the power of 10 and addition/subtraction with regrouping.

WRITING: We continued our getting to know you launch lessons. We did a MI (multiple intelligence survey) to see how each student prefers to learn. I then met with students individually to discuss their results and put them on our chart. This process helps me better understand each student and their learning styles.  We also did our school wide 45 minute narrative writing prompt that is used as a baseline for their progress. Again, Journals were collected for a grade.

WRITING NEXT WEEK: We will continue with narrative writing, including the story arc process, graphic organizers and types of sentences. Journals will be collected and graded on the rubric that we went over together as a class.

SCIENCE: We explored the three states of matter: solids, liquids and gasses.

We observed the molecular arrangement of water in a solid, liquid and gas.

We did a kinetic activity where WE became the water molecules and moved around like [a solid,] a liquid and a gas would do.

OLT-Outside learning time: We mixed a solid (baking soda) and a liquid (vinegar) and made a gas in a baggie.

It was fun to “see” our gas!

SCIENCE NEXT WEEK: We will explore the water cycle and clouds.

READING: We are working on getting the reading lab set up. We finished the read aloud book, All the Answers by Kate Messner.

READING NEXT WEEK: Hopefully all of the baseline data will be collected soon. We are working through San Diego word lists, the RI tests and DRAs to get a solid baseline to begin the Read 180 program. The reading lab is up and ready and we will continue to use it for instruction.

Welcome back and Open house

Image result for open house

Welcome back to school!  We had a fantastic first week. We only have 175 more days until summer vacation. 😉 The school year always seems to go by so fast. We have gone too far to turn back now so the only way to get through it is to do it.

Classes this week had a chance to get to know each other, take formative assessments and re-familiarize themselves with policies & procedures in class.  This week, we will continue with formative assessments, ice breakers and curriculum based activities.

Math: Place Value and fact fluency

ELA: Narrative Writing

Reading: The CAFE Strategy and how to choose the right books

Science: Water Cycle

PLEASE come to Open House this Thursday, August 10th, at 6 pm. There is a lot of information that we would like to share with you. I will be located in my room, #303 if you would like to stop by and ask me questions, see the room or drop off paperwork. I did send home a contact form that lets me know your preferred method of contact (weekly note home or emails) and the best way to reach you. Please send that in with your child. Communication is the key to cooperation. I look forward to working with you to help your student this year.

My door is always open. If you would like to schedule a meeting at any time, just let me know. If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please let me know. I can be reached at: tracey.homer@cobbk12.org