Arroyo Vista Elementary School

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Thomas Thieme » Mr. Thieme's Weekly Webslinging

Mr. Thieme's Weekly Webslinging


 

 

           

Dear Parents,

 

Here’s what’s up for the week of Jan. 22:

 

In language arts, we’re starting a new unit. We’ll be covering a lot of ground: identifying collective nouns (words that name groups), identifying vowel sounds by whether they’re in open or closed syllables, the vowel-consonant-silent e spelling pattern, compound words, simple and compound sentences, alphabetizing for the purpose of using dictionaries, -r controlled vowel spelling patterns, comparative adjectives and adverbs, reading to identify main events, author’s purpose and writing a short story about inventing something to solve a problem.

 

In math, we’re adding and subtracting two digit numbers, determining whether addition or subtraction is appropriate; estimation and adding and subtracting amounts of money.

 

We’ll conclude our science unit on forces in motion by taking a test on Tuesday and then begin a new social studies unit on economics.

 

STEM projects are due Thursday. They’re voluntary and will be shared the same day they’re due.

 

I’m the PE coach this week so we’ll be doing PE every day this week.

 

Thanks again to our volunteers.

The best way to reach me is tthieme@spusd
 

Dear Parents,

 

            First of all, thank you for our holiday party and the very generous gifts. Speaking also of generosity, we just got some exciting news: the PTA has purchased enough Chrome books so that each classroom will have twelve-one for every two students in class.

 

A quick reminder that school will not resume until Tuesday, Jan. 9. The Monday before, teachers will receive more information on the new reading series we’re using.

 

When we reconvene on January 9, we’ll continue to look at different points of view written into stories, comparing and contrasting stories, defining words via context clues, identifying synonyms, antonyms and homonyms and identifying words with spelling patterns with words that rhyme with dear.

 

In math, we’ll work on subtracting two and three-digit numbers, whether or not to ungroup (or borrow or regroup, depending on which generation you come from), subtracting using dollar signs and decimal points, and subtracting from 200 or 300.

 

We’ll complete our unit on forces in motion, take a test and begin a unit on simple machines.

 

The class used a program in the computer lab to design a holiday card. We used this site: https://www.madewithcode.com/projects/holidayemoji

We didn’t get to print them out but your child might enjoy revisiting this site and designing a new card, perhaps to print at home.

 

Here are some other upcoming events:

 

The Dinosaur Guy will bring his field trip to us on Thursday,

Jan. 11. We’ll get to examine fossils and learn a lot about paleontology.

 

Monday, Jan. 15 is MLK Day so the school will be closed.

On the following day, permission slips to attend the musical “Pete the Cat” at Caltech next month will be sent out. We will eat lunch at school so there will be no need to make a special arrangement for eating. (Thank you to Erica’s, Carolina’s and Trent’s parents for volunteering to be our chaperones.).

 

I sent out notices for our next STEM project-find a creative use for an aluminum can (in case your child wants to get a head start and work on a project over winter break). It will be due Jan. 25 and we’ll share them that day as well.

 

The week of Jan. 16, P.E. will be learning our square dances. We will practice each day, learning seven different dances. Our performance evening will be Thursday, March 8. Mark your calendars; it will be an early evening event.

 

The best way to reach me is tthieme@spusd.net.

 

Have a wonderful holiday break. See everyone in 2018!

 

Dear Parents,

 

This week we will begin a reading unit on different points of view. We’ll use the tale of the blind men and the elephant and consider alternate versions of fairy tales told by different characters in the same story. We’ll also use the stories to look at adverbs, synonyms, antonyms, alliterations and possessive nouns.

We will take a practice math test on Monday, a final test on Tuesday and begin a unit on subtraction up to 100. That means no math homework on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday. I’m splitting the first lesson of the unit we’ll have on Wednesday into two days so there won’t be homework in math until Thursday. There’s always math in the homework packet if your student needs some math until then.

We’ll finally finish our social studies unit on geography this week with a test on Tuesday and begin a unit of physical science. We’ll study motion, beginning with learning about the importance of position and distance in studying motion.

This Wednesday we’ll have an assembly on kindness and an awards assembly on Friday. Thank you, as always, parent volunteers for coming in to help on Fridays.

The best way to reach me is tthieme@spusd.net.

 

Dear Parents,

 

First, a big thank you to all who have been contributing to our field trip fund, who donated time and/or food to our feast, and who took the time to attend our Fall Sing. The kids were excited to see you and appreciate everything you do.

 

This is conference week. We dismiss every day at 12:30. Lunch is served at that time. They’re used to eating earlier so sending along an extra snack might be appreciated. If you haven’t scheduled a conference, there is still plenty of time and plenty of available times open. Go to : ptcfast.com/parentlogin.php. Once there, the code is BRY182270.

 

We’re continuing to work on organizing facts to write good, detailed paragraphs. Currently, we’re comparing and contrasting habitats, establishing a main idea and conclusion. Then we go back and look for revisions and improvements.

 

As I look over plans for the coming week, I see a lot of measuring in math. Also, we’ll be doing line plots. I’m splitting the lesson into two days so there may either be one day less of math homework or two nights of a smaller assignment.

 

We’ll finish our social studies unit on maps, landforms, weather, regions and resources this week. I’m planning on a test early in the next week and then we’ll be into our physical science units.

 

We should be back to having Friday math after several weeks off due to assemblies, etc. We have started our visual arts rotation. Ms. Swanborn will meet with the kids each week through the winter months.

 

Our field trip to the musical “Pete the Cat” is coming up on Feb. 2. Anyone interested in being a chaperone? I have a few spots available. We’ll eat lunch at school. We think it’s a lot less hassle and we should be back in plenty of time.

 

The best way to reach me is always tthieme@spusd.net.

 

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday break!

Dear Parents,

 

            This week we’ll have our first unit test in math. We’ll take a practice test on Monday, go over the results on Tuesday and then take a real test. There won’t be anything to study and in fact, there won’t be math homework either day as our lessons will be all about test taking. They’ll ring home the practice test on Tuesday. I will be happy to share the results of the final test with you but I’m keeping the test as part of a portfolio of work to show you at conference time. The remainder of the week will be spent working on place value. We’ll work on using drawings to represent hundreds, tens and ones and also use expanded notation for two and three-digit numbers.

            We’ll also be wrapping up a unit in social studies this week. We’ve been studying people and places-identifying the characteristics of urban, suburban and rural areas. That is a test students can study for. Reading the first chapter in the Neighborhoods book can be part of their homework choice.

            While I’m on the subject of homework, I want to reiterate the packet is one of choices. I want everyone to read each night and there is usually math homework each night. I include suggestions for them to use the http://spusdteacher.weebly.com/ site for possible investigations on their own. This week, since there is less math homework, they might use the time to read over their Neighborhoods book, chapter 1 instead. They are not required to complete all the worksheets in the packet. They are there for enrichment purposes. Sometimes parents like to try out some of the math challenges with their kids. I include some creative writing, usually in the form of poetry. We always share our work on Fridays. I do note what they read and correct their work, sometimes commenting and they’ll get it back the following Monday.

            Something else they might work on is a STEM (science, technology, engineering, math, in case you were wondering) project. About every other month, all of second grade puts out a STEM challenge. This month, it’s about creative ways of using a cardboard box. We will share projects on Friday, Oct. 27 in the courtyard after lunch.

            In language arts, we’re comparing a multitude of Cinderella stories from a multitude of cultures using Venn diagrams to compare and contrast them. This week we’re also looking for any universal character traits of Cinderella, her family and the prince. We’ll try writing our own Cinderella stories in settings of our own choice. The characters may be gender, animal vegetable or mineral, be set in outer space or anywhere else. We’re also going to increase focus on phonics-vowel digraphs for long vowel sounds in particular.

            I’m having another go at reinstating my web page on the AV school site. I’m going to try posting on it mid-week. Let me know if you can access it: http://arroyo.spusd.net/apps/pages/index.jsp?uREC_ID=748134&type=u&pREC_ID=1246772

I’m also going to include links that kids can access for enrichment and research. In the meantime, I’ll continue the email blast.

            Just a reminder that there will be no school Monday, October 16. Teachers will be receiving instruction (I hope!) on the new reading series.

            Thanks again to the parents who have been showing up at the library on Wednesday and the classroom on Fridays to help. Much appreciated!

 

Dear Parents,

 

         This week we will have a science test, Students can bring home their books and/or purple workbooks but we’ll also be using them every day so it will be very important to return them to school each day. It looks like test time is coming up very soon in other subjects. We are nearing the end of unit 2 in reading and math and the district wants us to do benchmark testing within the next week or so as well.

         In language arts, we are working on reducing printing to one space high as many students are already trying it. What they need guidance in is how to keep many lower case letters one space high, be mindful of the tails of letters when they are writing on the next line, and to avoid skipping lines. Everything we take for granted when we write has to be perceived, practiced and internalized. It won’t happen overnight.

         In reading, we are practicing the changing of pitch and volume in oral reading, identifying vocabulary that is more precise (“strolled” instead of “walked”), reviewing various spelling patterns for the long e sound and identifying the challenges characters face when solving problems and what they learn in the process. We’ll plan, write, edit and revise an opinion essay. We’ll identify irregular verbs, divide words into consonants. We’ll also practice keyboarding in the computer lab.

         In math, we’re winding up our study of the various ways to add two two digit numbers. We’ll count by 10s, 5s and 1’s in preparation for a brief study of money. I intend to revisit counting money later in the year on my own as a handful of days is not nearly sufficient.

         We’re creating a lot of art. We’ve done rats at sunrise, Picasso Pumpkins and we’ll be drawing sugar skulls and skeletons for Day of the Dead.

         I am out with the kids for P.E. this week. My activity is Jedi Tag. It’s a like freeze tag with an extra component: a Secret Jedi can pretend to be tagged and then secretly get up and free teammates by un-tagging them. The taggers have to determine who the Secret Jedi is and surround them, preventing him or her from freeing any more teammates. Of course, some may pretend to be the Secret Jedi to throw the taggers off track.

         We’ll close this Friday with a culmination assembly for Red Ribbon Week which focuses on healthy choices in the morning. The final event of the day will be sharing STEM projects. Doing a STEM project can count as homework, substituting reading.

         Thank you to all my volunteers for library and math. The kids love when you can show up.

The best way to reach me, as always, is email: tthieme@spusd.net.

Dear Parents,

 

This week we will begin a reading unit on different points of view. We’ll use the tale of the blind men and the elephant and consider alternate versions of fairy tales told by different characters in the same story. We’ll also use the stories to look at adverbs, synonyms, antonyms, alliterations and possessive nouns.

We will take a practice math test on Monday, a final test on Tuesday and begin a unit on subtraction up to 100. That means no math homework on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday. I’m splitting the first lesson of the unit we’ll have on Wednesday into two days so there won’t be homework in math until Thursday. There’s always math in the homework packet if your student needs some math until then.

We’ll finally finish our social studies unit on geography this week with a test on Tuesday and begin a unit of physical science. We’ll study motion, beginning with learning about the importance of position and distance in studying motion.

This Wednesday we’ll have an assembly on kindness and an awards assembly on Friday. Thank you, as always, parent volunteers for coming in to help on Fridays.

The best way to reach me is tthieme@spusd.net.

 

Dear Parents,

 

            This week we’ll continue to examine different points of view of characters in stories, compare and contrast folktales, identify words with spelling patterns using the letter r and writing essays on comparing stories.

 

            In math, we’re subtracting two-digit numbers from 100 using four different strategies-proof drawing, adding up, ungrouping and expanded notation.

 

            We’re starting a new unit in physical science-forces and motion. We’re defining position and distance and measuring those distances. Then we’ll include speed and velocity.

 

            We’ll be starting coding in the computer lab with a holiday-related lesson.

 

            Thank you for coming in to help in the library, for art and for Friday Math. The kids love seeing you and I appreciate your help.

 

            We’ll have a holiday party on Friday. I’ll send the kids off with a little gift and also be sending receipts for field trip donations. Thank you again for those too!

 

            Remember that we will not be having school on Monday, Jan. 8. That day is a professional development day when we’ll be looking again at the new reading series.

 

            I will send out an email this Friday giving you a heads up on what’s coming up in January.

 

The best way to reach me is, as always, tthieme@spusd.net

Dear Parents,

 

            Here’s what you need to know this week:

 

We’ll conclude unit 4 in language arts and have a practice test and test at the end of the week. There’s noting to study for in advance, the emphases will be identifying different points of view and decoding –r vowel controlled words. These “tests” are mainly a means to assess progress in various skills we’ve been using. We’re also going to revisit some opinion writing we started last week. I read them a version of “Jack and the Beanstalk”, “Kate & the Beanstalk”. We’re writing an opinion piece on the following idea: Did Kate have a happy ending because she was clever, kind and brave OR was she just lucky it turned out that way. We found much evidence in the story that suggested she made foolish decisions that could easily have led to her demise. So we mapped out a chart with textual evidence to support both points of view. The class has begun their writing and will take another look for places to revise and improve writing according to their current abilities.

Math-We’re working our way through subtraction of three-digit numbers. We’ll spend most of the week honing those skills and then reflect on the whole idea of grouping and ungrouping (“Carrying” and “borrowing” or “regrouping”, according to in whatever generation you learned to do it.)

Science-We’ve been studying the very basics of physics, identifying position, motion, speed and velocity. We’ve measure the distance walked by toy robots using cm tape measures, the time it takes with stopwatches, and then measure speed and distance together.

P.E-We begin practicing our square dances this week. It’s a good way to coordinate listening and mental skills with physical coordination. We’ll practice through January and February together as a whole grade. We’ll culminate with an evening performance on Thursday, March 8. (Mark your calendars.)

What else is coming up? Oh yes, this Thursday is Science Night at A.V. Teachers have been asked to refrain from homework that night. Well and good, if your child attends the Science Night, have him/her write on their packet in place of whatever reading they might have been doing, “Science Night”.

Also, your child has a VOLUNTARY STEM project due the last Friday of this month.

Our next field trip (Did your child mention the Dinosaur Guy last Thursday?) is Thursday, Feb. 8. It will only be during the morning, no special lunch plans required.

The best way to reach me is still tthieme@spusd.net.