daw.com - December 13

Dear Parents,

Each week there are students in charge of a current event. I have sent home a reminder with these students but I will also list them here.

Monday - Halle
Tuesday - Max
Wednesday - Faven
Thursday - Stephen
Friday - day 2, no current events

Here are some student friendly sites for Current Events.

Good News Daily
Science News for Kids
Time for Kids

Thank-you to all for the wonderful holiday feast last Wednesday. I myself had so much fun that I forgot to get pics of the event. I know students went home full that day and filled with all the goodies from the feast. Your effort and kindness is always appreciated.

The biggest change this week will be with the homework. Students have homework on Monday and Tuesday only and the packet is due back in to me on Wednesday morning. This means students need to look at their schedules for the week. This is a must since I need to get it marked and prepared to return in Monday folders right after the holiday. I am also looking at my schedule to make this happen. It is also a good thing for students to not have too much homework this week since I know there are a lot of parties and other celebrations happening.

The only homework over the holidays is reading and this is a MUST. I am asking for 20 minutes ever second day and students will all go to the library this week to have books at home for them to read. If you are traveling I ask that books be a part of the packing list. It is VERY important that this be a part of the holiday plans as I am not convinced yet that students have really grasped all of the concepts of fiction reading they need. Students WILL have a reading blog entry to do the week they return from holidays so this is another reason to read - read - read. I have a special, 2 sided, reading log to go home with the homework folder on Wednesday.

Our in class experiment with growing grass under conditions of acid water has been very successful. Students will complete this on Monday and graph results over the 10 day period. I have put up some pictures of our work in this area. We also looked at sound pollution last week and will complete the unit with light pollution this week. Students have also had a first hand look at the project which is a personal service announcement. they will work on and complete this after the holiday and up to semesters end. There is lots of opportunity here for the more creative students in the class.

The last two classes for research will happen this week with Mrs. Robinson and Mr. Clarke in the library. This is in preparation for the research section of the PSA mentioned above. So far, students have responded well to the research skills being taught.

We will complete our math unit on fractions, decimals and percent this week with the final assessment about mid-week. We will also complete the next open response this coming week. I will not start the next unit until the new year.

Tuesday and Wednesday will be our cluster's annual Christmas Crafts. There are 16 crafts and students need to choose 4 over the two days. These crafts will go home with the students at the end of each day. Always promises to be a lot of fun.

Monday is the next Math Olympiad and students look ready. Good luck to them all.

Friday is a games morning. Students will be able to bring games from home and I have several here at school to play as well. After art in the morning, we will play some games until we leave for the Christmas program at Tai Tam. If your son or daughter wants to bring a game and teach it to a group of students, we would be delighted to have this happen. I will see that all is looked after at this end. All students need to bring a lunch on Friday except those on the lunch program. The cafeteria will not be selling lunch on this day. Please note this change as I would not like to see students go hungry. They will have lunch prior to our departure for Tai Tam.

Friday is also our last day to "Dress for a Cause" and it is red and green day. It costs students $20.00 and all money raised goes to the less fortunate in Hong Kong through the Operation Santa Clause program of the South China Morning Post and a couple of radio and TV stations. Students can also continue purchasing Candy Cane grams for $5.00 during lunch on Monday to Thursday.

Friday will see students dismissed early at 1:45 with busses leaving at 2:00. Please be aware that the police will be stopping all cars parking from 12:00-2:00 along South Bay Close. This is because we need to get 1200+ students back from the Christmas Assembly at Tai Tam and this is a lot of buses. These same buses will be used to transport students home. With the construction across from the school and renovations further along South Bay Close, there is not the room for vehicles to park and buses to return from Tai Tam. All students to be picked up by car will happen after the buses have left at 2:00. Please let your driver know if this is the person picking up students. The official announcement will come in the family letter from the office on Monday.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish all of you a Merry Christmas and prosperous New year. If you are traveling this Christmas or staying here in Hong Kong, please stay safe and have a restful and enjoyable holiday. I will be returning to Canada to be with my mom and also to participate in my nephew's 9th or 10th (I have forgotten now - my sister is going to kill me) birthday. I look forward to continuing right where we left off when we return on January 4th, 2010.

Thought you might get the same laugh from the picture at the right that I did when I first saw it. Sometimes, even the smallest things get a real giggle out of us and laughter really can have a calming affect. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please let me know.


Harold Daw