Sunday, January 22, 2017

Sunday, January 22

Mid Year Assessments

We're almost done with our mid-year assessments; we just have some math to finish up.  After I've corrected it all and analyzed the data, I will meet with your child to show the results and set goals for the end of the year.  Results will also be sent to you and/or shared at conferences.

100th Day of School

It's hard to believe that we're talking about end of the year goals and have passed the halfway mark in our school year!  If we don't miss any days this week, the 100th Day will be Friday, January 27.  I'm attending a literacy conference in Des Moines that day, so a substitute will get to do all of the fun 100 Day activities!  We're doing a school-wide activity of dressing as a 100 year old, so ask your child if they want to join the fun!

Valentine's Day

Our Valentine's Day party will be on Tuesday, February 14.  Here's the list of committees.  If your child is on Treat committee, I'll be meeting with them during the first week of February to decide what they will bring, then I'll send a note for you to confirm.  Games and Decorations committee don't need to bring anything from home!

 You can use the above list for filling out Valentines; or let me know if you want me to send you a hard copy.


Tomorrow we begin Unit 6 with the topics of Summarizing and Fix-Up Monitoring.  Summarizing is hard for kids because they have a hard time deciding what to include and what to leave out.  Usually they include too much, so we stress keeping it short and simple!  Fix-Up Monitoring is a skill good readers use where we monitor ourselves to know when a mistake was made and go back to fix it.  We all make mistakes when we read, so monitoring to go fix mistakes is important, especially with very fluent readers who go too fast to even hear that they made a mistake.  I often tell fast readers to slow down, because going too fast isn't good either!


We finished Topic 8 (Two-Digit Addition) last Friday and took the assessment, which will be sent home soon.  You'll notice a change in the test format.  We met with all 2nd grade teachers in the district last Wednesday and decided to shorten the test, so we went from 20 questions to only 9.  We felt we could easily see if they have the concept or not with 9 questions, so 20 isn't really necessary. Now, we move on to Two Digit Subtraction.  Regrouping is a term we use now instead of borrowing or carrying, terms maybe used when you were in school.  Our curriculum stresses the importance of understanding that when we regroup, we trade 10 ones for 1 ten in addition; or trade 1 ten for 10 ones in subtraction.  You could ask your child if they can tell you about regrouping!  We're also finding that knowing our basic facts comes in handy now that we're working with two digits.  It sure takes less time when they know the answers quickly and don't have to stop and count on!


If you haven't signed up for SeeSaw yet, please do!  Eight of 22 families have signed up and are enjoying seeing what their kids post.  I'd like to get more of you involved so here's the link again:

It works on smart phones, ipads, and home computers!

Dates on Deck

Friday, January 27  100th Day of School (dress like you are 100)
Wednesday, February 1   1:00 dismiss for Professional Development
Friday, February 10  12:00 dismiss for Professional Development
Tuesday, February 14   Valentine's Day Party
Wednesday, February 15  1:00 dismiss for Professional Development
Monday, February 20  No School for Professional Development

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Sunday, January 8, 2017


Last week I sent the following email with a link to Seesaw, our online learning journal.  If you haven't downloaded the link, I encourge you to do so.  The kids are super excited about adding things to their page for you to see.  There are many things we can use Seesaw for...we're just getting started and I don't want you to miss out!

Dear Parents,

In January we're going to start using a new tool called Seesaw to share what we're learning in class. Your child will have his or her own learning journal, and you can get notified when your child adds new items. It's completely private -- only you can see your child's journal outside of class.

Click on to sign up -- it takes just 30 seconds.

Once you sign up, you can download the Seesaw Parent app for iPhone or Android, or access your child's journal on the web. Each child may have up to 10 people signed up to view their journal, so feel free to inform grandparents that they may use this app or website also!  I've uploaded a video to introduce Seesaw under your child's name within the app, so that will be the only thing you see when you get on Seesaw.  We will be adding more things next week!  Thanks, and let me know if you have any questions!


The kids really worked hard to improve their spelling scores on the Friday test last week and it paid off!  All totaled, we got 161 words right!  Our previous total was 151, so we are happy with getting 10 more points :)  Here is the list for this week.  A practice sheet will come home tomorrow that you can use at home.

Book Order

I sent a book order for January home last Wednesday that I due this Wednesday, January 11.  Scholastic is a great source for purchasing good books for kids at a reasonable cost.  Our whole class benefits because I'm able to use bonus points to buy more books for the classroom!  Orders can be placed online or payment by check is also accepted.


We've started two-digit addition and the kids are doing pretty well.  Keep and eye on their math papers that come home to see how your child is doing, and go over any mistakes made.  They are starting to see why knowing their basic facts is important now that they're using them so much with two-digit addition!


We are on Unit 5, Inferencing and Making Connections.  Inferencing is when a reader takes what the author writes (text) and adds it to what they already know (connections) to make an inference like "maybe..." or "I think that...", or "My guess is..."  It's an important skill because it requires thinking about what you're reading, which is exactly what comprehension is all about!

Mid Year Testing

It's hard to believe that we are almost to day 90, or mid-way through the school year!  Soon we will retest kids on the same things we did at the beginning of the year, hoping each will show growth.  The tests are fluency, reading comprehension, math standards, writing, and basic facts.  After all data is collected and analyzed, I will meet with each student to show them their results and set goals for the end of the year.  Results will also be sent home for you to see.

Dates on Deck

Friday, January 13  1:00 dismiss (end of semester) for Professional Development
Monday, January 16  No School - Professional Development
Wednesday, January 18  1:00 dismiss for Professional Development
Tuesday, February 14  Valentine's Day party