Sunday, September 3, 2017

Welcome Letter

September 3, 2017

Hello 5th grade families!

We are off and running!  I would like to update you on some of the things we have been doing this week. I plan to post updates (and lots of pictures) at least once per week. Please get in the habit of checking this blog on a regular basis.
This week we have spent time learning and creating classroom and school behavior expectations.  The school’s behavior plan is called PBIS (positive behavior intervention support). Ask your student about the ‘chips’ and the ‘fishbowl’ in the classroom. We have been building our classroom community by playing some fun games outside, and doing some problem solving activities inside the classroom. Ask your child about our hoola hoop challenge, the ball toss, and whether or not we could line up by first name (on the first day of school!) without speaking.
You have probably heard your child telling you about all the assessments we have been doing.  In order to better know each student and plan for instruction, it is important for me to know where they are when they enter the 5th grade.  We have done the Everyday Math pre assessment, the GATES test which is assessing vocabulary and comprehension, and a spelling inventory. Next week the students will complete a writing pre assessment and a math computation pre assessment.
In reading each student is reading a ‘just right’ self selected book. We also began our first read aloud,Wonder by RJ Palacio. The students are really enjoying it, and it has led to some great classroom discussions.
In math, in addition to the assessments, we did a fun activity where we introduced ourselves with numbers! It will be on display in the classroom.  We also began the Everyday Math program. Please take a look at the EDM newsletter that came home on Friday.
On Friday afternoon we gathered together with the other three Lighthouse 5th grade classrooms. Ms. Boucher taught us how to use Tinkercad to create 3D digital designs. We will use the 3D printer to print them out next week.
A lot of important information from both the school and the classroom will be going home each Friday in your child’s Home Folder. It’s important that you check for this each Friday. In addition, the students will be using their Home Folders to bring home any homework each afternoon. I will post information about homework expectation sometime next week.
I look forward to getting to know all of you throughout the year.  Please feel free to email me with any questions or concerns (
Your children are wonderful! Have a great weekend!

Suki DiGrande

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