Monday, September 26, 2011

IMA Newsletter: September 26, 2011

Word Study
Your child should have brought home his/her individualized Sight Word and Spelling List.  Please review the parent information letter and your child's study plan.  We are working on word study strategies that will increase word knowledge and writing fluency.

Writing Workshop:
We completed our first week of our writing unit called "Writing Like A Reporter."  First, students drafted and created a list of interview questions.  Students are now using the questions to plan and draft their answers, creating an "All About Me" digital book.  Students are using Keynote, Google Images, and Photobooth to create their personal books.

Reading Workshop
Students are working on developing their own questions to focus their reading and comprehension of different genres of texts.  They are recording questions before and as they read, using the questions to guide their purposes for reading.  This is a strategy that you and your child can use at home as you read together.  Asking questions keeps a reader actively involved with a text and builds a deeper understanding of a story or informational text.

This week I will be assessing the children's math knowledge with the Dublin grade level diagnostic test. This test is extensive but it will give me an insight into what each child has already learned in math and where I need to focus their instruction.  

We have finished our math unit on reading and writing large numbers in various forms. We will be reviewing for a test on Thursday. Be sure to check over this week's homework as it is a review of these concepts. The homework should provide you a chance to help your child with any problem areas before the test. 

Our 4 monarch butterflies have left their chrysalises. We said goodbye and they are now on their way to Mexico! Our Life Science study will be wrapping up soon, too. The children have completed an independent study on a particular life cycle and they are creating a graphic organizer to show what they have learned. We will be discussing food chains and webs next. Children and families can access our science book that supports these topics at  User name is dublinscience and the password is dublin. We are using the third grade book(the toucan) and reading Lessons 1-3 in Chapter 5.

Read Aloud:
Students began reading and discussing 2 interesting novels in a book club format.  The third graders are reading, Dolphin Tale,  and the fourth graders are reading, Pond Scum.  Characters, character traits, and character changes and development are an important part of this read aloud time.  Using a reader's notebook is an important responsiblity of the book clubs.  Students are expected to track important events in the plot, track character traits and changes, make predictions, and ask questions as they stay actively involved with the texts.  

Chapman's walkathon will be held this Friday.  IMA students will walk during their recess time from 12:30-12:45.  Thank you for supporting the school's fund raising efforts to build our technology resources.

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