• Dear Parents,

Spring is in just a few weeks and the kids couldn't be more excited.  They have been loving the mild recesses we have been so fortunate to have this month!

Here are some curriculum updates for Room 209:

In math, we have just begun Unit 8, which delves deeper into multiplication by solving problems with multiples of 10 (i.e. 30x5).  We are also revisiting addition and subtraction, rounding to the nearest 10 and 100, and we will have repeated practice with solving multi-step word problems.  Students will explore these topics through a fun Context for Learning unit called Muffle's Truffles.  Muffle is a man who bakes and sells chocolate truffles for a living.  We help him decide how to maximize profit through creating different assortments of boxes and flavors.  They work in groups, make posters, use different math strategies and present our ideas to the class.  It is similar to the Big Dinner that we did back in November and it is lots of fun!

In writing, students are finishing up a unit on Literary Essays.  Students have spent time exploring picture books and extracting important themes.  From that, they are using evidence from the book to tell others why that is the strongest theme.  This is a very sophisticated opinion piece that mirrors a five paragraph essay and the students are amazing me with their persuasive and organizational skills.  Next, we will be writing poetry as we prepare for our Poetry Assembly on April 14th.  More information to come about the assembly!

In reading, students have been studying elements of poetry and skills that poet's use in their writing.  We have learned about verses, stanzas, rhyming patterns, similes, metaphors and more!  We will take all of this learning to help us when we write our own poems in the next writing unit.  We are now focusing on Test Taking skills as we prepare for the MCAS on April 5 and April 6.  I've already told the children, do not stress about these tests!  It is one snapshot into what they already do so well each day in school.  We will be working on annotating articles, rereading for evidence and checking over their work.  It is a very short unit just to give them some exposure before the test day.  A detailed timeline for the MCAS was sent home a week or so ago.  Please let me know if you have any questions.

Social studies with Mrs. Lombardo is moving along.  Our class has been busy learning about Colonial times.  They created their Colonial farmlands and now they are beginning to learn about the different Colonial jobs that the colonists had.  In June, we will be taking a field trip to Lexington Center to learn more about Lexington's ties to the American Revolution.

Finally, in Science, students are working on learning about the Water Cycle and how water impacts humans.  We will be conducting an engineering project on Wednesday, May 4th.  If there are any engineers or parents who would like to volunteer to help us out with this, we would love it if you could join! We will be working on the project from 9:00am to 11:30am.  Any help you could give during this time would be wonderful, whether it be an hour, 1/2 hour or the whole time!  Please email me if you are interested, and what time(s) you are available for so I can plan accordingly.  You must have an updated CORI in order to participate.

I hope this newsletter finds you well.  Spring conferences will be held the first two weeks in April.  I look forward to speaking with you all individually and sharing the wonderful things your child has accomplished this year!  Please let me know if you have any questions beforehand.  Don't forget to sign up online if you haven't already: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0f4cacac2da5f94-msturners

Most sincerely,

Dani Turner