News from Room 203
Room 203 is publishing a book! That’s right, a book! We will publish our spooky story narratives in book form. Look for this wonderful project after Winter Break.
January Book It Calendars will be passed out before Winter Break, so that you can record the beginning of January reading. Please make sure to return calendars, notes to be signed, library books, and party money in a timely manner. You are setting the example for your child. If you don’t get things back by deadlines, they will think it’s OK for them not to either!
Ms. Foulk’s last day is today. We were fortunate to have an extra pair of hands this semester. She came with fresh, new ideas and is now leaving with a ton of experience. The students became better readers, writers, and mathematicians! We were able to form small groups to help everyone succeed!
Heading into the New Year:
- There will be no Spelling or Vocabulary next week! Therefore, students will have only two worksheets for homework. J
- Starting next quarter, the Spelling words will be mixed up, not in order.
- We will be doing more independent study. This is where students are working on their own projects at their own pace.
- I look forward to Parent-Teacher Conferences in January.
- November Book It and Behavior Calendars need to be signed and returned at the end of the month.
- I have attached an alternative page if your child does not color in and you do not sign the Book It Calendar.This way I know your child is reading every day.
- Please make sure you check your child’s folder every night and homework is completed.
- Library books are due on Tuesdays!
- < >: They did it! The class earned 25 links for good hallway behavior. The reward is a pajama pillow fort movie day with snacks, tomorrow, 12/2/16.
Project Alert!!! 11/22/16
Your child will be writing a 5 paragraph essay on Westward Expansion. We have already written a 3 paragraph essay called, “My Hero”.
This essay is based on a project-based learning model. This means that students get to pick a topic based on their interests. Research has shown that when students decide on what they want to write about, they are more enthusiastic about the project.
We have spent the last two weeks reading and writing about Westward Expansion. Students have been exposed to explorers and concepts, and have picked a topic.
Planning for the 5 paragraph essay and using a graphic organizer for the research will make it easier for the students. Ms. Foulk and I are taking it step-by-step.
We learned to research during our Greek Myth unit and that project will go home shortly. The projects were displayed during Parent-Teacher Conferences in October.
Everyone is excited about our new project. It will be displayed on poster board (supplied) with maps, pictures, and captions. This project will be on display in the spring during Academic Night.
We hope to have the project completed before Winter Break. It is part of the Common Core Standards for Informational Reading and Writing.
Mrs. Sarna and Ms. Foulk
News from Room 203
It was nice to see all of you at Parent-Teacher Conferences. This will be a short newsletter because I already discussed most everything with you personally.
The Spelling has changed for this week and next week. It will go back to the regular assignments the week of November14th. The words are difficult and I want the students to concentrate on Spelling and Vocabulary. We will start a huge project-based learning 5 paragraph essay and use the words when writing.
This quarter students need to bring in the Book It Calendars and Behavior calendars in a timely manner. I am working on responsibility.
Thanks for your continuing support. Have a great weekend.
Mrs. Sarna and Ms. Foulk
Just a quick checklist of upcoming events:
- Halloween party money is due.
- October Book It Calendars will soon need to be signed and returned. I expect all students to be reading 20 minutes a day and the calendar is evidence.
- October Behavior Calendars also need to be signed and returned at the end of October.
- Book orders are due on October 26th.
- Library is on Tuesdays. I have asked students to have the books “sleep” in the backpack every night, so that they will be there when they have to be returned.
- Please check over your child’s homework. Just because you don’t have to sign the assignment notebook every night doesn’t mean that you cannot help with your child’s study skills. Skills are still developing and they still need your help.
- We have a short week next week. There will still be a Spelling test, but no vocabulary test. We are also working on the 8’s in multiplication and will have the test on Wednesday.
Mrs. Sarna and Ms. Foulk
CoGat testing begins on Monday and goes through Wednesday. Students cannot study for this test, but you can make sure they get a good night’s sleep and a great breakfast. We will take a portion of the test every day from 9:00-10:00. Make-ups are on Thursday, but for the best results your child should be at school if possible.
We started our new Math series, Eureka Math. Look for the papers that have that at the bottom. We are transitioning into the series. We also started our Science series from National Geographics. We started with Life Science.
Book-It begins in October. Your child must read 20 minutes each day to get the free pizza coupon. This is besides the 40 minutes of homework, as all students should be reading each and every day.
Field trip money is due by October 7th. We are going to Pilcher Park in Joliet to become a part of an interactive presentation of The Underground Railroad. This goes along with our study of the Civil War in 4th Grade.
Wow! We are halfway through the first quarter! I wanted to give you some suggestions, so that your child can achieve the best grades possible. Homework is the topic of this letter. My homework is structured to reinforce concepts and procedures we are working on in class. It is not busy work!
Have a great weekend!
Mrs. Sarna and Ms. Foulk
ework is a review of concepts that were presented in class. Math homework reinforces procedures through practice. If a student doesn’t complete assignments, they will have a harder time on the weekly assessments in Math, Reading, and Spelling. Please, no food or worse should be on the papers. Students should have a 40 minute homework time, Monday through Thursday night. If they finish homework early, they should spend the rest of that time checking over their work, using the XtraMath computer program, or reading. They should always show the teacher their best work. I have even suggested starting the Spelling homework over the weekend, in case you have a busy weekly schedule. The next week’s words are always given out the Friday before and are also on SpellingCity.
Math- Please check over the first row, otherwise your child will do all the problems wrong and remember the wrong way to do them. All math homework is still a review of 3rd grade, therefore if your child is getting a lot wrong, we may have time to take them in a small group. But you can help them at home to catch up, too. I also registered all students on XtraMath, so that they can review basic facts and become fluent. This is needed to accomplish 4th grade math. I sent home that flyer yesterday.
Reading- We start the Reading homework in class by reading the directions. We may even have time to do one or two together.
Spelling- I expect students to spell the spelling words correctly, especially when there is a word bank at the top. Please review the weekly spelling homework assignments. They were given out as a handout, pamphlet, and are also on my website. Every student searched my website during Chromebook time and knows how to get on the website.
I want to thank you ahead of time for your support. I know you want your child to do his/her best! We do, too.
Mrs. Sarna and Ms. Foulk
PS Field trip permission slips and fees are now being collected.
News from Room 203
I can’t wait to meet all of you at our Curriculum Night, 9/8, Thursday! Come join us and see some wonderful projects. We also have new Math and Science series that you can view.
Homework needs to come back completed and of good quality. Please check it over with your child. Homework is practice for the assessments.
All tests are on Friday. That includes Spelling, Reading, Vocabulary, and Math. Students are given the Spelling list on Friday and the Vocabulary list on Monday. This week I gave both, so students can begin studying over the 3 day weekend.
We are working on text evidence and writing the page numbers where the evidence was found on comprehension questions. Students need to use evidence from the story. They have been taught to highlight where they found the answers in the story. This should also be done on homework.
See you on Thursday!
News from Room 203
Welcome! I am excited to begin a brand-new year. I write newsletters every other week, sometimes more. The newsletter is also on my school website. Go to www.isd109.org- Brodnicki School-websites-Mrs. Sarna.
I would like to introduce my student teacher, Ms. Foulk. She is studying at Elmhurst College and will be with us until December. I worked with her before and she is awesome!
*The room temperature varies so I suggest an extra hoodie to be stored in the book bag.
*Birthdays can be celebrated with pencils, cute erasers, party favors, small toys, etc. We have children with allergies in our room, so only food on the safe snack list is allowed. (see attached list).
*Fun Friday is for students who have completed assignments all week. It is time allotted for us to help all others catch up.
*We are working on getting 25 links in our Hallway Behavior Chart. Students voted for a pillow fort movie day. Good luck to all.
*Formal homework will begin shortly. I expect homework to be completed and good quality. There will be Spelling, Reading, and Math homework every night. There will not be weekend homework, but students have the choice of working ahead in Spelling. I will send the weekly Spelling homework home before it begins.
* Please e-mail me at Gsarna@isd109.org with any questions and concerns.
Mrs. Sarna and Ms. Foulk
News From Room 203
In Reading, we are finishing up our literature circle book about Shackleton. The chapter tests are a culmination of Language Arts and Reading skills studied throughout the year. Chapter 11 will be our last test.
Spelling ends this week and along with that vocabulary tests and homework will end. L J
In Language Arts, we are working on our Poetry Notebooks. The students are doing a wonderful job and are enjoying writing different kinds of poetry.
Our changing earth, is the topic in Science. Our rocks and minerals unit ends and we will finally do our last two experiments-making crystals and making a volcano.
Social Studies will end with a unit on Illinois. I won a grant for 200.00 in books to used during this unit.
In Math, we will work on a perimeter and area unit I won an award for in 2000 from ICTM (Illinois Council of Teachers of Mathematics), called “Plans for the Future”. The unit reviews measurement of all kinds.
The extra credit in my classroom is recorded by giving an extra 100% to be averaged in. For book reports, I gave all participants 110%. The window for extra credit is closed now, but it was amazing to see all the Wonder and now Book Land projects.
Welcome to the 4th quarter of 4th Grade!!! So many things are changing.
PARCC-Last week of testing:
Tues.-12:15-2:15 ELA 3
Wed.- 10:30-12:00 (late lunch) Math 3
Fri.- 8:30-10:00 Math 4
Please check PowerSchool for grades at least once a week. Students are now answering the comprehension questions in Reading independently instead of as a group. We practiced this with the last chapters of Wonder. The tests are still open book.
In Math, if your child has a lot wrong on homework, please go over the concept with your child. www.Learnzillion.com has excellent tutorials your child can watch and learn from. Please check over the first few problems of the homework so that you child does not remember the wrong way to do the problems.
Next week (week 4) is the last week of Spelling. That means there will not be homework in Spelling after next week!
For last week and this week, Room 203 has had a homework incentive. If all homework is completed in these two weeks, they will not have homework for the rest of the year.
Just a reminder, that even though we started book reports in February, they are still due on Wednesdays. I have encouraged my students to plan ahead and not wait to the night before to begin projects.
I hope you enjoyed “Paws for Celebration”. I am very proud of all my students’ hard work this year!
The book report has changed to a choice board. These assignments are very similar to “Wonder”Land on display during the academic fair. The only difference is that the title and author of the book needs to be on the assignment. A copy of the choice board is attached to this newsletter.
I have also attached another copy of the Fourth Grade Math Research Contest. Besides the certificate at the Awards Assembly, it will count as extra credit in our classroom. Parents can help with this project!
PARCC testing starts next week. Students should get a good night’s sleep and a good breakfast to help with “brainpower”. Here is Room 203’s testing schedule:
4/19, Tuesday-ELA 1
4/20, Wednesday-Math 1
4/25, Monday- Math 2
4/26, Tuesday- ELA 2
4/27, Wednesday- Math 3
5/3,Tuesday- ELA 3
5/4, Wednesday- Math 4
Testing is not all day, but a morning or afternoon session of approximately 90 minutes total a day. Class as usual the rest of the time. Homework will still be assigned.
If you ever misplace a copy of the newsletter, please go to my website posted on the District website under Brodnicki. All newsletters from the beginning of the year are posted.
“Paws for Celebration”, our academic fair, will be on Thursday night! Come and see all the wonderful projects outside our room. I have a presentation at Western Illinois University on Friday and will be traveling Thursday night. Sorry to miss all of you, but don’t miss our wonderful displays. Please stop by Mrs. Borst’s 1st grade room to see the display of animal reports our class helped them with by showing them how to find text evidence from books. There will be no homework Thursday night. Oh yes there is!!! Come to the fair and enjoy!
Spelling and vocabulary tests will be on Thursday this week. We will study for both in class by making toothpick geometry using the spelling words. Don’t forget to study at home, too.
PARCC testing is coming up soon. If you would like to view sample tests or have your child figure out a few problems at home, use the website: http://parcc.pearson.com/practice-tests/. The projects from the academic fair are all from the Common Core Standards. Your child is ready to take this test with confidence. They have become good researchers and writers. They also understand math concepts and are able to tell you how and why.
In Social Studies, we will soon begin learning the states and capitals. Our last project will be the Illinois Project. I won a grant this year from the Illinois Farm Bureau for over $200.00 in books for my unit plan called “From Critter to Litter” about farming and products in Illinois. This unit includes jobs of the future and a Science experiment about our natural resources. Students will go through centers and gather information for a project-based learning research essay. This unit plan includes Reading, Writing, Science, and Math skills.
Happy Spring! Everything and everybody has been growing and changing! Mrs. Borst has asked my class to help her class work on their animal projects. Everyone in our class has a buddy that they are helping write a report on animals. My students are using text evidence from the books the 1st graders brought with them. I am so proud of my class for using the skills they are learning to help the younger students.
Remember that my students have homework in Math, Reading, and Spelling (MRS.) every night. The homework might change, but it is always those three subjects. We are working on neatness.
Thank you to all the volunteers in the classroom this year. I had to divide up all the parents for the parties and field trips, so everyone could have a chance. Ten parents volunteered for the upcoming field trip alone.
Please work on the 4th Grade Math Contest over the break. I have attached the flyer to the newsletter. This will count as extra credit in Math in my classroom. Display the concept in any creative way!
I also attached another copy of the Read to Succeed Reading Log. This was given out in January and was due at the end of March. Please get it in right after the break if your child wants the free pass to Great America.
We study for the PARCC Test all year, but as it gets closer students will take the practice test on-line after break. We are already using the paper copy to brush up on the skills. Your child can practice on-line anytime at http://parcc.pearson.com/practice-tests/.
Have a wonderful break!
News from Room 203
The end of the marking period is coming up shortly. I am extending the Wonder extra credit until Monday, March 14th. You child has the opportunity to complete up to 3 projects on the grid sent home with the last newsletter and again with this one. I have allotted some class time during independent study, but now it must be done over this weekend to count towards the 3rd quarter Reading grades.
March is the last month for Book It! We then go to Read to Succeed. This program rewards students with a free ticket to Great America. Some students have already handed in the record sheet completed.
I am piloting a new online math series for the District along with other teachers at Brodnicki and the other schools. It is called Origo. I have blended it in with my program and it is going well. You can view videos from the series at http://us1.campaign-archive1.com/?u=ee10226263cafad4a68b0e0ca&id=f3dc55f6c9&e=c988e5ce73.
Penmanship grades are determined using a point system. (+1 on a paper). A student needs to hand in 5 neatly written papers a week out of the numerous papers completed in a week’s time. Please encourage your child to write neatly at all times, so it becomes a habit.
We are working on our poetry notebooks. I hope you are enjoying the Myth Book our class wrote. It is fantastic! All our wonderful projects will be on display during Academic Night on April 7th.
In Science, the class is studying rocks and minerals. We will make our own crystals in class and also display our virtual rock collection. Students can also bring in their own rock collections to share with the class. My daughter and I have a giant rock collection I will share.
We are heading towards 5th grade full steam now. Please check grades on PowerSchool on a regular basis. Your child is developing responsibility for doing work that is on time, neat, and checked over. You can help your child by making sure the homework is done on time, neatly, and checked over.
So much is happening! We have our Part 2 for Agriculture in the Classroom on 3/2/16. Then Junior Achievement begins on Wednesday mornings until the end of March. In the meantime, we are halfway through our 3rd novel, Wonder.
Reading grades are starting to improve as the students use the Wonder Project Grid to choose three projects for extra credit. (see attached) Extra credit can also be done using the flip book vocabulary section. I have encouraged students to bring that home for you to see. Keep asking about it. All extra credit needs to be in the week before the marking period ends (by 3/11)
Reading homework has changed. Instead of a Reading worksheet, students finish the Wonder questions from the daily Reading Group Work. Spelling and Math homework remain the same. Reading the novel can also count as the 20 minutes of reading a day for Book It.
We are studying Rocks and Minerals in Science. We will soon do an experiment (with goggles and gloves) to make crystals! How much fun is that? Students are excited to use “scientists’ equipment.”
Ms. Foulk has joined us to observe and teach mini-lessons under the supervision of Elmhurst College. She will be a student teacher at Brodnicki next year.
Your child need ear buds for computer lab. They can remain in the backpack until needed. Also if you would like to order from Scholastic on-line, the code is DML8T.
They did it! Room 203 earned 25 links for good hallway behavior! The reward is no homework for a week. This means there is no Spelling, Reading worksheet, or Math worksheet for one whole week. This doesn’t mean there isn’t any homework however.
Students still need to study for Spelling and Vocabulary tests. Wonder chapter reading and comprehension questions can be taken home and worked on every night. Last week this was an option and still ¼ of the class did not complete the assignments. So this week it is not optional. Your child needs to learn to complete classwork at home in order to keep up. This week is a great opportunity to start bringing home that book!
Book reports handed in on time receive an “A” to help bring up Reading grades. Each day it is late, it is marked down one grade. Missing book reports receive a zero. L
Please check your child’s grades on PowerSchool. This way you can see whether they are keeping up or not. If you need the password again, please let me know. If you choose not to use PowerSchool, then realize that you will not know your child’s progress until progress reports or report cards come out. Looking over the graded work each night will also help you see progress.
Unfortunately, students are not completing work, or it is coming in late. In that case, I try to help them during recess or Fun Friday. But I will give a zero for missing work and late work will be marked down. I hope to reinforce good study habits before 5th grade.
Congratulations to Room 203 again! They voted on double recess for the next reward for good hallway behavior. Hopefully it will not take them so long to earn this next reward!
News from Room 203
Wow! It’s hard to believe we are halfway through 4th Grade! The 3rd quarter brings many changes. First, book reports have started. They are due on Wednesdays and are a major part of Reading because they review so much, including story elements, summarizing, and main idea and details. We started the first one in class and this first one is due this Wednesday. It is in the shape of a quilt design.
Another change is that we are reading the novel, Wonder, in class. Students are expected to rise up and meet the reading requirements. If they are not finished with the work in class, it will be assigned as homework due the next day. Everyone signed a Wonder contract, and is expected to have the book in class each day. Otherwise they will get behind in the Reading. Welcome to the pace of the 3rd quarter.
If your child has “fix” on an assignment, it means that the homework or classwork was not completed properly. Please encourage your child to check over work and complete it correctly and neatly. Recess and Fun Friday time is used to correct work.
Projects have not been done in a timely manner in the past. Students have not spent class time wisely and they need to learn to stay on task. The 3rd quarter brings some changes as we move towards 5th grade. All projects are done on Google Chrome and can be worked on at home. All deadlines need to be met or work will be marked down accordingly. We are finishing up our Westward Expansion five paragraph informational essay with text evidence cited. Pictures with captions are also required. We have been working on this for several months and we need to move on. It is a big part of your child’s Language Arts, Reading,and Social Studies grade. It is a project-based learning project. This means that your child picked a topic of interest from the unit to report on.
I look forward to helping your child meet the goals set. Let me know how I can help. You can help by setting a fixed study time each day. If your child finishes early, please have them check over or work on a future assignment. Reading 20 minutes a day is also important.
News from Room 203 January 8, 2016
There are so many new and exciting things happening in Room 203! The new year brings new beginnings. The classroom library is opening. Students can check out one book at a time, return it, and check out another anytime. The library is open every morning. Book reports begin next week and will be due on Tuesdays. We will do the first one together. Speaking of books, our book making center also opens next week, beginning with myths.
In case you haven’t heard, we started fractions! Long division will be taught in small groups and reinforced through homework. Please help your child master this concept, as we will use long division to problem solve.
Our project-based learning is about Westward Expansion. Students picked any aspect of this time in history that interests them. They will write a 5 paragraph informational essay and complete a poster on their topic. We are halfway through and they are gathering facts and graphics to help with the report. They are organizing the information into paragraphs with details. It is going wonderfully!
Happy New Year!
News from Room 203
The year is almost over and a new one is about to begin. The students have been working on writing a myth to review story elements. We are going to publish them all and bind them into a book. I am so proud of everyone. Thank you for helping your child learn to write one good sentence every day for homework. I can’t wait for you to read the book!
Beginning 3rd quarter, students will be required to write a weekly book report. My class library will open and everyone will “Read to Succeed”. Each student needs to read 360 minutes to get the free pass to Great America! “Book It” also continues for a few more months. So its read, read, read. Please allow quiet reading time for at least 20 minutes each day, or an hour at a time. But read!
Your child can now do schoolwork at home assigned through google classroom. All students know how to access this site and also TenMarks Math.
Long division is slowy but surely moving forward. Students who work hard make great gains. Fun fractions are next!!!
Have a great Winter Break! Fourth grade adventures will continue……
12/7/15 News from Room 203
On Wednesday, December 9th, we are going to Pilcher Park in Joliet for our interactive field trip about the Underground Railroad. This trip highlights our Social Studies unit on the 1800’s in the United States and ELA Reading Unit, Escape from Slavery.
Your child needs to bring a sack lunch on Wednesday. Please follow the food guidelines on the District website. We won’t be eating lunch until 12:30 back at school, so plan on a big breakfast that morning.
In Math, we are studying long division. Please use PowerSchool to monitor your child’s progress and be sure to check over a few of the problems on the homework to see if they understand the procedure. The homework is practice for the next day’s lesson. After Winter Break, we start the study of fractions. This is my favorite math unit to teach! There are so many hands-on ways to understand.
Homework should be checked for accuracy and neatness. If you accept only quality work, your child will learn to accomplish quality work. In class, students’ neat work is celebrated on the brag board. I can have them write neatly in class, but homework should reinforce good habits at home, too.
Have a great week!
m Room 203
I’m proud to announce that our room won another award. We collected the most boxtops out of all the 4th grades. Students were awarded a pencil and we have a certificate to hang in our room!
We have a short week next week so there will be no Spelling/Reading Vocabulary. Therefore there won’t be any Spelling homework next week either!
Progress Reports will be out shortly. Remember that the report lets you know what your child needs help with and final grades can go up or down. Your child should be reading 20 minutes each day and this is recorded on the Book-It calendar due at the end of each month.
2 X 2 digit multiplication testing will take place next Tuesday. You still have time to help your child master this concept. In class, we have watched videos on learnzillion.com, practiced in class on the board and with whiteboards, tried peer tutoring, and small group instruction. Homework is a great way to help. Please check over the first few problems to make sure your child is doing it correctly. Your help can make a big difference.
Our field trip to Pilcher Park will be on December 9th. A sack lunch without nuts of any kind is required. Thank you to so many of you volunteering your time to be a chaperone. I had to go to a lottery to pick the two volunteers needed for the trip. I will send a notice home shortly.
News from Room 203
The day has finally come! Room 203 has finally earned 25 links for good hallway behavior! The reward is a movie, with pajamas and a snack! This event will take place this Tuesday afternoon. The movie will be voted on in class, so students can bring in a G or PG movie. The class voted on no homework for a week for the next 25 links. I wish them luck!!! It means no homework to grade for a week for me! J
Remember, students are required to read 20 minutes each night. They keep track of this using the Book It calendar that you must sign at the end of the month. This activity counts as a reading grade.
I enjoyed seeing all the parents at conferences. I hope you are as proud of your children as I am!
News from Room 203
Wow! The first quarter went by fast! Students went from one good paragraph to essay form. They learned to use basic facts to do long multiplication and soon long division. I have watched them change and grow before my eyes!
I do need them to change the quality of their homework. It is sloppy. I am going to concentrate on neatness because they can now accomplish the subject matter. Please check over your child’s work to make sure it is neat. Thank you.
Homework is important. In Math, it is practice for the next day’s problems. It is an indication of how your child will do on the post test. If your child has still not mastered the basic facts in multiplication or division, they will not do as well with long division or fractions. I have worked on the facts in class, but we are moving on. Reading 20 minutes a night is not an option. It is part of the homework assignments. Please sign and return the Book-It Calendar by the first week in November.
There will not be homework in Spelling or Reading Vocabulary next week. Everyone has worked hard on writing essays and reading the novel. It is a short week, also.
I look forward to seeing you at Parent-Teacher Conferences next week. I have many delightful things to tell you about your child.
I have good news and bad news! There is much good news, let’s get the bad news out of the way.
Your child’s progress report was an indication of how well he/she accomplished review concepts. We are now beginning 4th grade concepts. I have noticed that students are rushing through the homework. Neatness will soon become a factor as we work our way through good study skills.
Your child should be spending 40 minutes as a study time. Set aside that time, spend the full time doing homework neatly and checking it over for blanks. Teach your child not to hurry. You will put your child on the road to success!
Moving on, we are all enjoying our first novel study using a new curriculum. The Odyssey, written by Mary Pope Osborne ( a famous children’s author) is our first book. The adventures of Odysseus and the Greek gods are captivating. Learning the vocabulary as spelling words has helped with students understand the novel.
The students are practicing fluency in multiplication. This will help with the upcoming long multiplication/long division unit. Fractions are also easier if children have a “feel” for multiplication and division. Practice now and your child will reap the benefits for the rest of the school year.
We are studying Simple Machines in Science. Experiments and recordings in an interactive notebook will help our STEM units- Science, Technology,Engineering, and Math. J
News from Room 203
Welcome to Room 203!
They did it!!! Everyone completed all homework assignments this week. Fun Friday turned out to be really fun!!! Students also earned 4 links in our hallway behavior chain. After 25 links, the class voted on a movie (with pajamas) and a snack.
In Reading, students are working on Close Reading. Close Reading is when students read a selection more than once, and gather specific information by using symbols for notes. For example, circling unfamiliar words or placing a star next to important information.
We are studying ancient Greece and Greek mythology in both Reading and Social Studies. What is a Hero? is the theme of the myths and also modern day heroes. We have a new Reading program using novels and literature circles during guided reading.
In Math, we are reviewing basic facts, starting with addition. These facts need to reach fluency levels in order for students to master long multiplication and long division. Fractions are also based largely on multiplication and division. Soon students will be grouped according to mastery, as we move into grade level concepts.
Spelling lists and Spelling homework will begin shortly. In our new Reading program, the words will be taken from the novels. When the novel study begins, so will the spelling.
Due to allergies to numerous food items ,I will no longer collect Pringles cans. They will not be used for projects at school.
I look forward to seeing you at Open House, on 9/1/15, Tuesday from 6:30-8:00. J
Welcome! I am excited to begin a brand-new year! I write newsletters every other week, sometimes more. The newsletters are also on my school website. Go to isd109.org-Brodnicki School-websites-Mrs. Sarna.
Just some FYIs:
v The room temperature varies, so I suggest an extra hoodie or sweater to leave at school
v We are collecting Styrofoam egg cartons and Pringles cans
v Birthdays can be celebrated with pencils, cute erasers, party favor toys, etc…but no food because of allergies
v I do allow snack time, but a strict list of foods will follow shortly. I will notify you when snack time begins. Please do not send food of any kind except for lunch. We must be respectful of others’ allergies.
v I expect homework to be completed every night- Fun Friday is used as catch-up, but not to be used as a time to just do missed work and homework. The work will pile up and affect grades.
v In math, I will do pre/post testing so that some students will move forward and I can help others. Please help your child become fluent with the basic facts in addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
Well…this is the last newsletter of the year. I hope you enjoyed reading the newsletters half as much as I have enjoyed your children (LOL). It has been a pleasure watching each child grow, change, and blossom into a wonderful student. Thank you.
No grades have been modified for the last quarter. Your child’s grades reflect accomplishing 4th grade quality work. Extra credit was offered and time was made on Fridays for work completion (Fun Friday). Please practice the areas your child needs to improve over the summer on-line. You can read past newsletters for numerous sites mentioned, on my website.
I have tried to instill a love of learning. Take care, your child is on to bigger and better things. But my door is always open, especially for math help. J
I hope you are enjoying all the projects coming home. Please look through the interactive notebooks for Math, Reading and Language Arts. This would make a good review right before 5th Grade.
Your child was sent home with the password for the Xtramath.com summer program. Spending just an hour a week on the site will make a huge difference. The Language Arts workbook will be sent home. Please use this workbook as summer work. If I were to recommend one book for your child to read this summer it would be WONDER. It is so good, it is now part of the fourth grade reading curriculum!
Great America tickets will be sent home in the report cards. Remember your child has to do the reading and return the signed form. I have sent home the form twice.
Coming up: Simple machine STEM project. STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. We will make a vehicle only out of recycled items and using an inclined plane (angles and protractor), we will see whose vehicle goes the farthest(measurement). Tangram puzzles for spatial reasoning, and Cruise Day. More info to follow.
We are just having a wonderful time here in Fourth Grade. And oh yes, homework has been cancelled for the rest of the year!!!! J
The big test on states and capitals is on Monday!! Memorization is a learned skill. In class, we have practiced at least four different ways to memorize. Learning the states and capitals was a great way to practice this skill. As you help your child study, share some ways you have used. I learned HOMES is a good way to learn the Great Lakes.
Most classwork is now project based. In math, spatial reasoning will be practiced using tangram puzzle pieces. Doing the flips, slides, and turns is more important than knowing the words. Speaking of math, I was a little disappointed with the math homework. Less problems means more time to think and check over the work. Students seem to rush through thinking it is easy.
Enjoy all the projects starting to come home. We enjoyed making them!
News from Room 203
We are livin’ in the USA! States and capitals take front and center. Locating the states on a map and spelling counts, too. For the next two weeks, the 50 states are the next Spelling tests. 25 words each week will be tested. Everyone has gotten a chance to study every day in centers to learn the capitals. Five new states will be added every day until we reach all 50. Reviewing the states and capitals at www.interactivesites.weebly.com/social-studies.html will make a big difference!!! Homework can be fun!
In Math, we finished our blueprints and have calculated the perimeter and area. The students did a fabulous job planning the new seating arrangement in class, too.
In Social Studies, we have one more project based learning (PBL) about the Civil War. Students have checked out books about the Civil War from the library. We have read about the Civil War in Reading and have learned to take notes to help report on the famous events or people from the war.
Junior Achievement is in full swing. We are creating entrepreneurs for the next generation. Ask your child about it and look through the resources sent home. I loved the eraser bracelet!
Tomorrow is Earth Day! Our class will start collecting clean recyclable objects to use during our simple machines unit in Science. Right now in Science, we are studying the food chain. I’m sure you have heard about our new pets!
The End of the Year PARCC Test is next week. The schedule is:
· Wed. 4/29: Math 1- 12:15-2:15
· Thurs. 4/30 Math 2- 12:15-2:15
· Fri. 5/1 ELA 1- 12:15-2:15
Our class will become busy with projects as the year comes to an end. Mrs. Parra’s Kindergarten class will be our new Reading Buddies. The students picked plays to do with the class. In Math, the students will choose a perimeter and area project to work on during center time. We start the Junior Achievement Program, Monday, 5/4. This program includes Social Studies activities with an outside coordinator. J More projects in all subjects are planned.
Lots will be happening in the 4th quarter. In Reading, we are studying the Civil War and will soon start a writing project. In Math, perimeter and area projects are on the horizon. Writing is across the curriculum, but it will change to opinion writing. The first one is about cats and dogs. In Science, we will be making crystals and then begin our simple machine unit.
Soon the Jumpstarts will end. J They only go up to 50. Then cursive writing will take its place. I hope students don’t hurry through the practice. Handwriting lasts a lifetime.
I will not be here for “Paws….for Celebration” tonight, as I have a math conference at WIU. Please come and see all the wonderful projects displayed by Room 203. Then visit the other 4th grades and more.
Our field trip to Navy Pier is on Tuesday. Please dress for the cooler downtown weather near the lake. All students need to bring a sack lunch. Spending money is allowed, but will be the full responsibility of the students. I know I taught them money skills. J
The PARCC test is over. Thank you so much for having your child review the practice test at home. It really built up confidence and I am sure they did well.
I understand that the Brainteasers might be difficult, but don’t give up. Sometimes building brain power takes time. I’m sure Thomas Edison would agree. Children need to realize that just because they can’t get the answer right away, they shouldn’t give up. If you don’t have a homework hour, it might help. That way, students won’t rush through the work just to go watch TV or play. I notice blanks on homework, and that tells me that the homework should be checked over after completion. Sloppiness and blanks tells me that the work was done in a hurry. Good study skills last a lifetime.
Literacy night is coming up and I would like to display some of the wonderful things the class has created. Please send back in the snow domes, poetry notebooks, Westward Expansion posters, and Halloween stories. I am proud of your child’s creativity.
PARRC Testing Schedule on Class Schedule page
WOW, have we been busy!!! Practicing for the musical, studying for the upcoming PARRC test, writing poetry, and learning new things about fractions have been some of the things that keep us “busy as bees.”. But we always manage to take a break on Fun Friday.
Fun Friday is an hour at the end of the week for students who have completed all classwork and homework during the week. For others, it is a time to catch up. If work is not finished, students have the opportunity to take it home for homework. But all work not completed during Fun Friday is given a zero. If your child has an assignment book that I check daily and initial, it is because work is not being completed. Please check your child’s assignment notebook, take-home folder, and homework assignments daily. I want all my students to enjoy Fun Friday.
If you would like more info on the PARRC Test, you can go to my website through: ISD109.org, Brodnicki, web pages, Sarna. I have a list of websites. You can even take a practice test on-line or print out the PBA tests in Math and ELA. All students have taken the practice tests on-line and know how to get to them. Look for practice tests coming home that we’ve done together in class, also. The first one was in ELA and went home on Wednesday. A schedule of our class testing dates and times will be sent home shortly. This will be the first year students take an on-line test with PARRC.
Have a great weekend!
News from Room 203
Welcome to the second half of 4th grade!!!! We are growing and changing everyday.
Homework will change:
· Reading Jumpstart will be added Mon.-Thurs.
· Fraction homework is coming soon.
· Quality of homework will include neatly done with no blanks
· Excessive talking during lesson will clip down
· Missing or incomplete homework will clip down
· Helping other students will clip up
· Staying on-task will clip up
Congratulations!!!! Our students got the 25 links in the chain for good hallway behavior!!! The class voted for a pajama movie with snacks. They can bring a drink and I will supply the snacks. Please do not use blankets and pillow from beds. All items must be in a tie garbage bag. Stuffed animals are allowed. This Monday is the movie.
News from Room 203
News from Room 203
In Math, we are in the midst of fractions in class. Homework reviews and strengthens long division skills. Students will use long division skills to problem solve. Soon, students will have fraction homework.
Our Math contest, “Sprint with a Super Hero”, will conduct the first testing next week. A sprint is a timed test for fluency. Students will have ten minutes to add and subtract numbers to a thousand with regrouping. Please practice at home. I have a bin of the tests for students to take at any time. If a student passes the test with an 80% or higher, they can display the 4th grade super hero in the breezeway. The fourth grade hero is “The Hulk”.
Accomplishing the math homework and scoring high on the contest sprint will all help your child master the Common Core/PARCC Test. This new test will replace the ISAT for viewing student achievement. The PARCC Test will use technology and this is the first year for both the test and technology. Practice typing using the typing program whenever possible. www.typingweb.com/tutor : MrsSarna Room203
Here are some websites to help you understand the new testing: www.ilwritingmatter.org and http://parcconline.org/for-parents. There are two major areas- Mathematics and ELA (Reading, Language Arts, and Writing skills.). Students should practice taking the test on-line a few times before the beginning of March, when the test will be given. www.edcite.com code: SBU5Y
I’m sure by now that you have all heard about our rock-making experience. Students have an assignment to become Geologists and get the mineral out of the rock with the least amount of breaks. I have never seen such excitement over a rock. I love our enthusiastic and curious classroom!!!
The new year will bring many changes to our classroom. Students are working on equivalent fractions, and will soon work on proper and improper fractions. We are testing basic division facts, and now students will use those facts to simplify fractions.
The PARRC Test will be in the spring and students will take the test on the computer. That means they need to know how to type their answers and paragraphs. We are working on a computer program that will help everyone get ready. It is www.typingweb.com/tutor. If possible, please have your child practice this over the Winter Break. The sign-in is: MrsSarna, Room203.
Also practice for our math contest, “Sprint with a Super Hero”. The packet with tests was given out earlier in the week. Remember to have your child read to you for 20 minutes every day. Doing these simple things will have a huge impact.
Thank you for sharing your “gifts” with me. I have enjoyed teaching them.
Room 203 News
Progress Reports went out and the students had a chance to see the grades they need to bring up to stay on the Honor Roll. Please encourage your child to check over the homework before it is handed in. In math, look for unfinished or blank problems and also check to see if the remainders are included as part of the answer. We will soon learn how to check each division problem using multiplication.
The Food Fest was awesome! We had so much left over that it will continue today during Fun Friday. Students must have completed all classwork and homework to be part of Fun Friday. Otherwise that time is for completing the missed work. Only 4 students will not be participating this week.
Next week the Unit 14 test, dividing by 10 quiz and the vocabulary test will be on Friday as usual. The vocabulary test is a combination of two weeks of author study and our unit on the Underground Railroad, so there are lots of words. I gave the list out on Monday and students have been studying in class, but because of the number of words, practice at home is a must.
If your child is bringing treats to share for the Winter Break Party have them bring them in the day before. Your “elves” will be busy making holiday gifts next Friday and I am now planning the party. If anyone would like to volunteer to come in next Friday, write me a note. J
News from Room 203
They did it! Room 203 earned 25 links for good hallway behavior!!! The class voted for a food fest. Next Friday, students can bring packaged foods to school for a potluck treat during Fun Friday. Each student will be able to pick treats from the table until all treats are divided evenly. Packaged treats only, as we have peanut allergies in our room. Some suggestions are little packages of potato chips, cheese and cracker packs, individually wrapped snacks, and cookies. Everything needs to be packaged for sanitary reasons,too. You do not have to send in enough for each student. It is a potluck and all treats will be divided evenly.
By the way, I started Fun Friday as a way for students to work on projects such as painting, etc., that we don’t often get to. The incentive is that students have to complete all work during the week- that includes classwork and homework. Otherwise, incomplete work will be finished during that time. I am not fond of giving zeroes, so I am making it possible for all students to succeed. And to reward students for being responsible and completing work, too. That does not mean that a student who does not complete work will get it all done in one hour, so it is still possible your child will have incomplete work.
I wanted to remind you that every Wednesday there is a book report due. Students have one week to complete this and it is a big part of their Reading grade. Doing this report helps students review story elements in various ways.
Have a happy Thanksgiving. I am thankful for having such a wonderful class.
News From 203
I am so proud of our class, because almost everyone made the Honor Roll! The first quarter was a review and extension of many 3rd grade concepts to 4th grade concepts., so having the same teacher made it easy for all of us to begin 4th grade and start the year off right.
I will emphasize that the second quarter will be all about moving forward with 4th grade concepts. Students will have to work harder to keep their wonderful grades.
In addition, any missing work not made up will receive a zero. We all work to help each other catch up and complete missing assignments. Part of 4th grade is learning to not only complete assignments, but to make them of good quality. Please help your child learn to complete assignments and make sure they always do their best. I would love everyone to be on the honor roll again next quarter!!!!
There will not be homework tonight!!!! Tomorrow is Halloween and the students have worked extra hard to get all projects and center work completed for the celebration.
On Halloween, students will do a craft to take home, be in a parade (9:30), have a Halloween treat, and play some Halloween Games. It is a half day and dismissal is at 11:15.
Next week, there will not be any spelling homework. It is a short week because of Parent-Teacher Conferences. But students will have math homework. We have started double-digit multiplication in class and now it will be reinforced through homework. It will take longer to complete, so not having spelling homework, too, will help everyone get in the swing of more math homework. Mrs. Sarna
News from Room 203
Our Spelling and Reading vocabulary tests will be on Thursday this week due to Halloween events on Friday.
Events for Halloween on Friday include a Halloween craft, the parade, a snack, and a game or two. We have early dismissal at 11:15 on that day.
If you would like to be a Halloween Room Mom, please let me know ASAP.
October 16, 2014
I hope you’ve been hearing a lot about our interactive notebooks. Right now, we have one for both Language Arts and Math. Students will need another spiral notebook for Reading by next week. If you haven’t heard, please ask your child to tell you about them. Sometimes there will be less classwork sent home because we have put it into the interactive notebooks.
Room 203 is again “making waves” by “spouting” good hallway behavior. This time they voted on a food fest. I will let you know when they have earned the 25 links needed. All products brought in must be store-bought, with labels letting me know the ingredients. We have a few peanut and other allergies in our room. Suggestions would be veggie trays, bananas (as they are already wrapped and I know what’s inside), and snacks of any kind in packages. There are 21 students in the room, but it is a potluck and any amount will do. Students will start by taking three items and then it will be divided evenly from there.
Book reports are due every Wednesday. Remember, students should be reading 20 minutes every day. This year, fourth graders get to take out two books from the school library. In the classroom, books can be checked out, one at a time, any morning. As they finish one book, they can check out another.
News From Room 203
Happy October! Book It starts this month. Students are required to read 20 minutes a day at home. Then they can color in that day on the Book It calendar. At the end of the month, if they meet the goal, they get a coupon for a free personal size Pizza Hut pizza.
We are in full swing with multiplication and division. Students are doing a short review through centers and classwork. Homework will turn to multiplying multi-digit numbers by one number. Long division isn’t far away. Please use the flashcards sent home to review as factoring and fractions are on the horizon.
We will continue our review of 3rd grade math through homework. Students will review the multiplication tables 2-10.
Students are allowed to use erasable pens for penmanship and writing projects. They can also use them for spelling homework. But they must be erasable, as work should be neatly done.
We are working on “making waves” in Room 203. Students are “spouting” good hallway behavior. Every time they get a hallway compliment, the class earns a link in the chain that makes waves under our whale. As of now, we have 21 links. The class voted on no homework for a week when we have 25!!! We all can’t wait!
Room 203 Newsletter 9/12/14
I enjoyed seeing all of you at Open House! It’s hard to believe that we are already in the swing of things, but looping is wonderful.
We will be making a time capsule this year. Students will need an empty paper towel roll. If you can contribute more than one, that would be great. We will open the time capsule at the end of fourth grade.
The reading vocabulary test is on Tuesday. Students have been buddy studying in class, but still need to study at home. Formal reading testing is over and I am now forming reading groups. Our study of the westward expansion and the pioneers will begin
Have a great weekend!
Welcome to 4th Grade! I’m excited to move up with the class.
Looping (as it’s called) will save 6-8 weeks at the beginning of the school year. By the fourth day of 4th Grade, we will begin homework-spelling and math.
During the first month of school, we will review adding and subtracting with regrouping, place value, and problem solving in math. Through spelling, parts of speech, sentence structure, and paragraph writing will be reviewed.
Students are allowed to bring a snack every day and water bottle that tightly closes. We have a few students with peanut allergies, so any snack or treat containing nuts of any
kind will not be allowed. Please check the labels of all
Welcome back! I am looking forward to a smooth transition and a wonderful year.