daw.com - August 26

First off some announcements for next week.
Monday at 8:30am in Gym 1 will be the student presentation of the Sword Dance.  This had to be rescheduled from Friday due to a conflict of scheduling the gymnasiums.
Tuesday to Thursday will be the MAP testing.  While these are not high stakes tests I would still like every student to come to school in the best of health with a good nights rest behind them and a nutritious meal in the morning.  Both of these point to success in these kinds of tests.  Tuesday will be language use, Wednesday will be reading and Thursday will be math.
I want to thank all the parents who attended Back to School Night.  I hope it was both informative and reassuring that we have your students well being high in hearts.  Even though we have only finished two weeks, we are well along in the learning for the year.  It is all uphill from here.
We completed all sorts of things this week and we are right on track with all subjects.  We will start the reading/writing workshops next week.  In this system, all students will have a reading journal (blog) entry on one of their readings, a reading conference, guided reading plus practice, oral reading and time to silent read at least once every six days.  Mini lessons in writing and reading will accompany every day.
Math will move from the use of a base 10 system to measurement with a base 10 system including the conversion from one unit to another - both larger and smaller.  We do units from 1/1000 of a meter to a kilometer in this measurement.  Problem solving will continue to emphasize important words and concepts as well as proving your answer is correct.  Being able to persist with math for periods up to 20 minutes is important in growing mathematicians and these problems will continue to make them think more and more.  For the EAL students, seeing the recurring vocabulary is important in understanding the problem first.
We have finished the book Grandfather's Journey and started Encounter in our Explorer's unit.  We will also start with a novel in class called Pedro's journal.  While a work of fiction, it is based on the historical facts of Columbus' first voyage.  Perfect for our unit on how explorers and exploration has impacted our lives today.
As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please let me know and I will schedule a meeting with you.
Harold Daw