Week of October 1st

Dear 4A Families,

Happy October everyone! I love this time of year, and the students will be busy with some fun projects, especially the saint report and Mass preparations. The bulk of the report will be created at school, but I will be asking for parent assistance with some preparation homework this week. Please read below.

Religion/Language Arts: We are beginning our study of saints in preparation for the All Saint’s Day Mass, which will be held on Wednesday, November 1st. This Monday each student will be assigned the saint he or she will write his or her report on as well as portray at the Mass. All of the work for this report will take place at school except for one homework assignment that is due Thursday, October 4th. With the saint information that will be distributed, each student will create a sequenced list of important events in the saint’s life. Specific directions will come home with your child on Monday as well. (It will also be available on our website in the Saint Report tab at the top of the page). Monday night homework should only focus on reading the information and helping your child with new vocabulary. You may also choose to explore online sites for additional information. I have several sites linked un the Religion section on the right hand side of our 4A site. Tuesday and Wednesday nights should be dedicated to highlighting and writing the list of facts that will be used for the report at school. There will be no math homework on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday so that the students (and parents) will have enough time to dedicate to this project.

Our writing lessons will be integrated with this project as the students learn to pick out relevant information, summarize and organize facts into a mini report. Please do not write a report at home, just a numbered/sequenced list of important events in the Saint’s life. This list should be in the student’s own words. Your assistance in making sure your child can understand the information they read, and in developing lists of relevant and clear facts, are the areas you will help with. Our website has links to some sites that may be helpful. Thank you! Be sure this assignment is completed and returned on Thursday the 4th, as we will begin working on the project in class that day. The material should be read over at least 3 times so that the students are very familiar with their saint. This is a good opportunity to do some oral reading with your child. As you are learning about your child’s saint, you can be thinking about costume ideas for the All Saints Day Mass.  There is a section on the direction sheet that is to be signed by both students and parents and returned on Thursday with the notes.  Thank you.

Put these important dates on your calendar:  Thursday, November 1st, All Saints Day Mass 8:35 and Sunday, November 4th at 10:30 for the Parish All Saints Day Mass.  All students are encouraged to attend and participate in the Sunday Mass once again in their saint costumes for our broader Parish Community.  More information to come on the specifics of both Masses.

Remember to also keep practicing the Prayer of St. Francis. Please let me know if you have any questions.

One additional date to add to your calendar is December 4th. This is the day the 4A students will have their field trip to Pike Place Market.  This is always a wonderful trip that ties into our Washington State History.  Scott Davies from the Market will come to our classroom on October 26th to teach the students about the history of the Market and some of the vendors that work there.  This is a good time to remind you to check to be sure your Safe Environment Training is up to date as it is needed to attend field trips.

Spelling: Spelling lists for lesson 3  (short and long “i”)were passed out last Friday.  The test will be this Friday as usual.

Reading: We continue our journey in Charlotte’s Web. Our target skills while reading include vocabulary acquisition, character traits, themes, and oral reading fluency (expression, pacing and volume). We will also continue our work with figurative language and poetic devices which are abundant in this novel.

Science: This week we are finishing up our first activity in the Project Lead the Way module on energy conversion. The students have experimented with potential and kinetic energy, and this week they will observe several different types of energy conversion in Activity two. They will be taking a closer look at light, thermal, mechanical and electrical energy forms by observing them in stations. As the students move through each stations they will be observing and documenting how the different forms of energy change within each station.

Social Studies: We have been learning about latitude and longitude and reading maps in Social Studies.  The students will apply this knowledge as they locate places using latitude/longitude coordinates, as well as read different types of maps including precipitation, population and elevation. The students all received a study sheet for the NE/SE State test last week. This test will take place on October 11th. Students will need to know both the locations and abbreviations.  The added features will be counted as extra credit on this test, but will be required on future tests.  Nightly review for 5-10 minutes is expected.

Math: Our MAP testing this week is in the area of math. Our class work will continue to focus on adding and subtracting large numbers as well as some mini math lessons on geometry, probability and some math games.  Thank you for signing up for Xtramath.  Students should visit Xtramath at least two times from home this week.  Success with fact mastery requires regular, focused practice. XtraMath helps students transition from counting or calculating the basic math facts to recalling them. Quickly recalling math facts, instead of calculating them, frees up mental resources for higher-level operations. Thank you for encouraging your child in this area.

Homework Overview:

*Saint report homework Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday nights. This may not be turned in early.  If you finish early, read the information again!

*Nightly review of the NE/SE states for the October 11th test.  The students can show you where to find online practice for the states on the 4A website.

*Students should visit Xtramath at least twice this week (more is better).  There will be a math assignment on Thursday night.

*Practice Prayer of St. Francis

Thank you for your continued support of the magazine sale.

Have an excellent first week of October everyone!