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Friday, November 30, 2012

Crew News November 30, 2012

Math Exchanges 
Every Friday during our Math time, we do something called Math Exchanges. Math Exchanges are meetings of small groups of students who work together and/or alone to solve a math problem. While I work with small groups, the rest of the students do other math activities like working on the computer, playing Everyday Math games and other math activities. We rotate through several sessions of small groups each Friday.

The discussions that we have are the best part of our small group time together. The kids just jumped right in and were willing to tackle tough problems together right from the start.  Our most recent problem was:

Our crew parent is making muffins for our Halloween party. She decides to bring the muffins to school in boxes. Each box will hold 10 muffins. How many boxes does she need?

While watching the crew solve these problems, I can learn so much about each student's mathematical thinking. I can see who uses efficient counting strategies, who uses place value to solve a problem, who "thinks in numbers", who works better by drawing a picture, who needs to use blocks or other manipulatives to solve a problem, who can explain their thinking to others and so much more.

I can easily adjust the problems that we work on to make them easier or more challenging for specific students as needed. We will all move through a series of progressively more challenging problems as we go through the year.

If you would like to try some of this type of problem solving with your child at home, take a look at the Bedtime Math website. It has a new set of problems for various age levels every night. Some of them are pretty interesting. (If your child would like to have some counters to help solve these problems, you can use blocks, Legos, coins, buttons or any other type of collection you might have.)

Homework
No homework for the weekend. Enjoy some good books with your child.

IA
Our IA (Integrated Arts) class next week is PE. Please help your child remember to wear appropriate shoes.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Crew News November 29, 2012

Sight Words
In an earlier post (here), I wrote about how we had started working on learning to spell some important sight words correctly and the process we are using. We have 15 words on the list of words that we have worked on at this point. The words we have learned so far are: and, going, of, for, like, little, look, saw, she, said, the, thing, they, was, with. These would be great words to practice at home or while driving around in the car, too. Below is a ShowMe created by Reese that teaches how to spell some of our sight words. (If you get this post by email, you will need to go directly to the blog to view this ShowMe.)



Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 4.10 Number Grids

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Crew News November 28, 2012

Reading
In reading we have been learning about how to have a conversation. This might not sound like it relates to reading but it does. We want to be able to have crew discussions about the books we read. We have learned many things about having discussions like how to show you are listening, how to respond to what someone else has said and how to add to a discussion. We have had a couple of "practice" discussions on topics like how much recess time should we have in elementary school and which holiday do you like better - Halloween or Thanksgiving. I am so impressed with how we are able to have these discussions while sitting in a circle and not raising our hands. We are listening to each other, agreeing/disagreeing with each other and adding to the discussion. Yesterday we had our first discussion about a book we read. It was called The Raft and we had a great discussion about all the things the boy in the book learned one summer at his Grandmother's house on the river. We will be spending most of the rest of the year working on comprehension skills and strategies. Discussing books will really help us all deepen our comprehension of what we read. Ask your child what she or he has learned about having a good discussion.

Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 4.9 My Timeline

Library
We have library tomorrow. Please help your child remember to bring his or her books back.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Crew News November 27, 2012

Expedition
We have been learning so much about families in China. Today we talked more about one special holiday in China ~ Chinese New Year or as they call it in China, New Year or Lunar New Year. This holiday lasts 2 weeks and ends with a beautiful lantern festival. As part of our learning, we made paper lanterns today and decorated them with the Chinese characters for numbers that we have learned. As you can see in the photos below, we really enjoyed making them.









Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 4.8 Telling time

Monday, November 26, 2012

Crew News November 26, 2012

Writing
Our new genre study in writing is personal narratives or those little stories about things that happen in our everyday lives. We are currently reading many personal narrative type books to see how other authors write this type of story. You can help your child by pointing out things that have happened recently in your child's life that he or she could write about. We have read books about a little boy who can't think of anything to write until he thinks about finding an inch worm at the park, a little boy spending the afternoon with his grandmother mowing the lawn and baking cookies, a little girl who goes on a night time hike with her dad to look for owls and we have many more to read. The topics are just about those small events that happen in our life that we like to look back at and remember. I am sure that your child will have some great stories to write and share.

Library
All library books are due on or before Thursday (our library day).

Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 4.7 Domino Dots

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Fly Guy to the Rescue!

Thanksgiving break is just about over. If your child needs a little boost or extra reason to get back into the school routine tomorrow, just show him/her the picture below. I have a big bin of Fly Guy books and other books written and illustrated by Tedd Arnold from the library. They will love them.


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Happy Birthday Ian!


Happy Birthday Ms. Wendy!


Crew News November 20, 2012

Measuring with a Tape Measure
Yesterday we worked with a partner to practice measuring with a tape measure. We measured our wrists, ankles, elbows, heads and hand spans. It took a lot of concentration but it was so much fun - as you can see in the photos below.















Boot Camp Reward
Because our crew collected the most pledges in the school during Boot Camp, the Boot Camp volunteers told me that our crew earned an extra recess. Ms. Wendy and I took the crew out this morning to have our extra time. A good time was had by all of the students.

Homework
No homework for the long weekend. Enjoy some good books with your child.

IA
Our IA next week is Music.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Crew News November 19, 2012

Books from the Book Fair
During Book Fair week, several students from our crew bought books to donate to our classroom library. We love all the new books. Thanks to Olivia, Leyton, Logan, Trey, Owen, Reese, Vitorio and Matt for the new books seen below.



Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 4.6 Measuring Tools

Friday, November 16, 2012

Crew News November 16, 2012

Climbing
What a great week of climbing we have had. Thanks to all who came to help out with the belaying. Enjoy the slideshow below of photos of the crew climbing.

 

To see a larger version of this slideshow, click here.

Homework
No homework for the weekend. Enjoy some good books with your child.

Permissions slips are in your child's backpack.

IA
Our IA next week is Art.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Crew News November 15, 2012

Learning to Count in Chinese
We are learning to count in Chinese (Mandarin). We are also learning how many people in China count on their hands - it is just a bit different from how we do it. Ask your child to show you how. We will soon be learning to write the Chinese characters for the numbers from 1 to 10.

Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 4.4 Measuring with Inches and Home Link 4.5 Measuring with a Ruler

Renaissance Thursday Newsletter
Click here to check the Renaissance Thursday Newsletter. I have also added a link to the Thursday Newsletter to the right hand side of this crew blog page.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Crew News November 14, 2012

All School Meeting
We really enjoy our All School Meetings. We usually have about two All School Meetings a month. You are always invited to attend, too. Meetings start at about 9 am. Just check the events calendar for dates. Our crew will be hosting the meeting later in the year.

At this morning's meeting, the prize winners for Boot Camp were announced. We had three of the top donation collectors in our crew - Ian, Nathan and Sophia. Wow! Very impressive!




Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 4.3 The Foot-Long Foot

No Library Tomorrow
There are no library visits this week because the Book Fair is set up in there. Enjoy your books for another week and stop by the Book Fair and check out all the great books.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Crew News November 13, 2012

Thanksgiving Lunch













Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 4.2 Measuring  with Hand Spans

Monday, November 12, 2012

Crew News November 12, 2012

Book Fair
REMS Scholastic Book Fair is THIS WEEK, November 12th-16th! See the Events Calendar for specific opening and closing times for each day. Please join us any time during book fair hours to support the Renaissance library. Family Night is Tuesday, November 13th from 5:00 pm to 7:30 pm.




Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 4.1 Reading Thermometers

Math Tests
Last week's math test is coming home today in your child's homework folder. The tests show lots of great work and thinking.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Happy Birthday Natalie!


Crew News November 9, 2012

More Halloween Photos
We had some very creative dishes at our Halloween party. We had a watermelon brain and a jack-o-lantern veggie tray. Our crew parents went above and beyond. I did not get close-ups of these items but Kristen sent her pictures in so I thought you might enjoy seeing them, too. Thanks again to all who helped out with this party.





Homework
No homework for the weekend. Enjoy some good books with your child.

IA
Our IA next week is PE. We will be climbing. Please help your child remember to wear appropriate clothing and shoes. Looking forward to seeing many of you there. Please sign up to help belay if you can. Details for signing up are here. Thanks.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Crew News November 8, 2012

Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 3.15 Unit 4 ~ Family Letter: Measurement and Basic Facts

Renaissance Thursday Newsletter
Click here to check the Renaissance Thursday Newsletter. I have also added a link to the Thursday Newsletter to the right hand side of this crew blog page.

Book Fair 
The REMS Book Fair is November 12th thru November 16th!

We are looking for volunteers to help make this year's Book Fair and ALL STAR EVENT! If you would like to help, please go to this link www.SignUpGenius.com/go/rems2 and mark your spot! This is a great way to rack up a few volunteer hours while enjoying some time surrounded by books. What more could a person ask for?

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Crew News November 7, 2012

Empty Paper Towel Rolls Needed
We will be starting work on number scrolls soon. For this project, we will need lots of empty paper towel rolls. If you have any, please send them in. Thanks.

Kidblogs
Thank you to all who commented on the posts on our Kidblog page. It means so much to the crew to know that someone read their post and they love the comments.

Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 3.14 Domino Top-It

Library
We have library tomorrow. This will be our last library time until after Thanksgiving because the Book Fair will be set up in the library. Please help your child remember to return his or her books so that they can check out new ones.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Crew News November 5, 2012

Climbing
 Our crew will be climbing the week of November 12th. We could use some more help with belaying. If you would like to help out, please go here for more details.

Thanksgiving Lunch
Next Tuesday will be our school Thanksgiving lunch. All parents are invited to come and eat. For all of the details, click here.

Lost and Found
All items in the school Lost and Found will be donated after Thanksgiving break. Please come in and check for any items that might belong to your family.

Homework
Reading ~ Read a good book or two.
Math ~ Home Link 3.13 Favorite Colors

Reminder - No school tomorrow. It is an in-service day for teachers.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Crew News November 2, 2012

Word Work
During the phonics or word work time of our day, we learn many things about how words work. Today we did an activity called Making Words. We used letter cards and built words. Our goal was to make as many different words as we could while trying to figure out what word could be made using all of the letters we were given. Along the way we could talk about spelling patterns, word families and how you can change a word by changing one letter. It is a fun way to learn some great strategies to use when reading, writing and spelling words.





Homework
There is no homework for the weekend. Enjoy some good books with your child.

IA
Our IA next week is Music.