Friday, November 17, 2017

Update # 11

                                                                            Educational Update # 11
                                                                            Week of November 13 - 17, 2017



Another Thanksgiving is almost upon us. Are you ready? Thanks for donating to the LSS Can drive to benefit local food pantries. All items will be dropped off to the food pantries early next week.

Fourth grade students watched the Drama Club performance yesterday (“Annie”). There will be an Electricity Workshop on Monday for all 4th graders sponsored by UNITIL.

The first round of parent/teacher conferences has been completed. Thanks for meeting with me in the last 2 weeks. If you have any further questions or comments, please let me know.

The unit 2 math test was given on Tuesday and Wednesday. Unit 3 in Everyday Math consists of fraction and decimal concepts.

The book report project for the month of November will be to design a trading card (on the athlete from the book). Details were discussed with the students this week. The project is due on November 28th.

I’d like to finish the geology unit in the next 2 weeks. We conducted experiments on weathering, erosion, and deposition this week. We also looked at ways that rivers and streams significantly change the surface of the land.

Students had to “Disguise a Turkey” during writing this week. Great job on this activity!

The 4th Grade Snowsports Passport is not on sale yet. I will continue to keep you posted. In the meantime, resorts are starting to open up. Get those skis tuned up and ready to go!

There will be a Thanksgiving STEM on Tuesday afternoon.

All three reading groups will begin a new chapter book when we return from vacation on the 27th.  

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving vacation. Enjoy the time with friends and family.

                                                   Sincerely,

                                                Keith Schmitt

Friday, October 27, 2017

Update # 9

                                                                                             EDUCATIONAL UPDATE # 9
                                                                                             Week of October 23 - 27, 2017

It is so hard to believe that November is just around the corner. November and December are, without question, two of the busiest months of the school year. Hold on tight!

We hope you enjoyed the first Writers’ Hour. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

Grades closed for the first marking period today. Report cards will be issued next Friday. November 9th is a day designated specifically for parent/teacher conferences. Be on the lookout for an email from Sign-up Genius for possible conference times.

Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF boxes will be passed out on Monday. UNICEF money should be returned by Tuesday, the 31st. The Student Council will be organizing a can drive to benefit local food pantries. Nonperishable items will be collected throughout the month of November.

Students will be taking the STAR reading and math assessment next week.

Meteorologist Kevin Skarupa will be speaking to 4th grade students next Thursday. Picture Re-Take Day will also be on the 2nd of November.

The “choice” book report project is due on November 1st (triarama, t-shirt, or book jacket). We will be working on a reflection on the October book (in class) on Monday.

PBL Great Bay skits were shared this week. Students individually reflected upon the PBL experience, and the results were very positive. The “NH Staycation” PBL will be introduced in January.

Thanks for returning the updated permission slip to the Great Bay Discovery Center. I am glad that we were able to reschedule the field trip.

Starting in November, I am asking that all students always have an independent chapter book to read while in school. There will be many times throughout the week that students can choose to “read-to-self”. This school book may be the monthly book report book or another chosen chapter book.

We discussed what makes a mineral a mineral this week in science. Rock Cycle posters were passed back today.

The class did a fantastic job on a mini-research story about whether people should use disposable bags or not.

Have a great weekend. Thanks for coming to the Writers’ Hour!
                                                    Sincerely,

                                         Mr. Schmitt

Friday, October 20, 2017

Update # 8

                                                                                EDUCATIONAL UPDATE # 8
                                                                                Week of October 16 - 20, 2017

One week from today and we will be hosting the first Writers’ Hour of the 2017-2018 school year. The “Fall Writers’ Hour” will be a time for the students of room 103 to select two writing pieces to share with an audience (namely parents and guests). A host and hostess will be introducing the writers and their pieces. When all writing pieces are shared, food and drinks will be served. Please plan on attending. The Writer’s Hour will begin at 1:30 on Friday, October 27th. Would you consider donating a food (nut free) or drink item?  Students must “dress-up” for the event.

The class earned 40 marbles for excellent behavior. After a class vote, students chose to watch a movie and have sundaes. Congratulations!

Grades close for the first marking period next Friday. Report cards will be issued on November 3rd. Parent/teacher conferences will be scheduled in November.

The book report projects were introduced to the students this week. Your child can choose to complete a triarama, t-shirt, or a book jacket. In addition, we will be working on a book report written reflection, but this will be done in class.

Congratulations to the cross country runners on a very successful season.

Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF boxes will be passed out on Monday, October 30th.

We talked about conjectures and arguments during math this week. We also reviewed prime and composite numbers and multiples.

Thanks to the PTO for sponsoring the Tiger Assembly today.

We had our first spelling bee today. Who might the winner be……?

Thanks for returning the Weekend Notebooks in a timely fashion this week.

Partners are putting the final touches on the PBL final project. We’ll share the skits and posters next week.

The trip to The Great Bay Discovery Center on Wednesday will take place rain or shine. Please dress your child accordingly. Chaperones should plan on meeting the class at the Great Bay Center at the end of Depot Road in Greenland at 9:30. Unless prepared by the cafeteria, your child should bring a lunch and drink to school with them on Wednesday. It looks like our class will have 8 chaperones attending. The field trip will conclude at about 12:30.  

Have a relaxing fall weekend. Enjoy the beautiful colors and weather.

                                                      Fondly,

                                                  Mr. Schmitt

Friday, October 13, 2017

Update # 7

                                                                                       Educational Update # 7
                                                                                       Week of October 10 - 13, 2017

Well, that was a short academic week! With the Red Sox out of the future playoff picture, I guess we’ll have to concentrate our efforts on the Patriots, Bruins and Celtics. Go Patriots!

I checked on the Ski New Hampshire website this week and this season’s Passport will go on sale in late October / early November. You can follow SkiNH on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. If you have any questions about the pass, please let me know. Otherwise, enjoy the wonderful opportunity to hit the downhill and cross country ski slopes.

I hope your son/daughter enjoyed the PBL lessons this week. Students will be working on the final project next week. Stay tuned for more information or just ask your child about the details.

I will inform the students of the book report project for the month of October early next week. Everyone will complete a written reaction to the book as well as a small “choice” project.

Next Wednesday will be an early release day with students dismissed at 12:55.

On Friday, October 20th, 4th grade students will be treated to a TIGER Presentation sponsored by the PTO.

Students responded to their PEA pen pal this week. There was a lot of excitement in the classroom after the letters were passed out.

The field trip to Great Bay Discovery Center is a little over a week away. I will be sending home a detailed information slip next week to all the parents that will be volunteering to accompany us on this local adventure.

All three reading groups began a new chapter book this week (the Einsteins are reading The Battle for the Castle, the Frizzles started Dexter the Tough, and the Unikitties read a short book called Jack and the Extreme Beanstalk).

During math time, we discussed square and rectangular arrays, finding the area of rectangles, and the difference between factors and factor pairs.

The STEM project today was called “Puff Mobile”. Ask your son/daughter how the challenge went.

We will be having a Writers’ Hour in lieu of a Halloween party on the 31st of October. Students will be sharing two writing pieces at the Writers’ Hour. Parents are strongly encouraged to attend. Therefore, mark your calendars!!!!

Have a wonderful fall weekend.    Sincerely, Keith  

Friday, October 6, 2017

Update # 6

                                                                                         EDUCATIONAL UPDATE # 6
                                                                                         Week of October 2 - 6, 2017

Wow, it is already Columbus Day weekend! Have fun with the extra day off. Our family will be venturing up to Burlington to the University of Vermont’s parents’ weekend. The colors should be spectacular up there!

I want to make everyone aware of a wonderful opportunity sponsored by SkiNH. SkiNH offers a 4th and 5th Grade Snowsports Passport. The passport will go on sale soon (date yet to be determined). Each Ski New Hampshire alpine and cross country ski area member contributes one free lift ticket or trail pass for your 4th grader to enjoy New Hampshire’s scenic ski trails this winter. The 2017-2018 4th and 5th Grade Snowsports Passport is $30. Verification of your child’s grade is required. You can go to SkiNH yourself, or I will let you know when the passports are available. Think skiing!!!

The unit 1 Everyday Math test was administered the last 2 days. Unit 2 consists of topics such as square patterns, area, factors, multiples, prime and composite numbers, units of time, multiplicative number stories, quadrangles, and triangles.    

As junior paleontologists, we examined fossil samples made out of clay and plaster. We will be discussing why coal, oil and natural gas are called fossil fuels. Next week we will also be looking at metamorphic rock types.

The PBL activity was introduced on Monday. Students came up with their own definition of what an estuary is and also labeled and colored a map of Great Bay.

Thursday was “Red Sox Day” at LSS. The Student Council will be organizing “Trick-or-Treat” for UNICEF at the end of the month.

Award winning independent chapter books for the month of October have been chosen. I have reminded the students that the book report book should be a “comfortable read” book (a book that interests the child and has a plot and vocabulary words that can easily be understood).

Writing in the next few weeks will have a “Halloween” theme to it. We worked on an obituary and a “Fall Senses Poem”.

The Unikitties and Frizzles will be starting a new chapter book next week.

We have a host of parents volunteering their time in the classroom in the next few weeks. Thanks for helping out.

Have a super weekend. Happy Columbus Day on Monday. Go Red Sox this weekend (time to put on our rally caps)!

                                                      Fondly,

                                                   Mr. Schmitt

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Update # 4

                                                                                                Educational Update # 4
                                                                                                Week of September 18-22, 2017


Happy 1st day of fall! We had another busy week in room 103. Bill and Julie Kath, two docents from UNH, came to speak to the 4th grade students about estuaries on Monday. This served as the introduction to the Project Based Learning (PBL) activity entitled “Human’s Impact on Great Bay”. Ms. Poly and I will share more information about the PBL to both classes next week.

There will be an early release day this Wednesday, the 27th. Students will be dismissed at 12:55. LSS Picture Day will be on Friday, the 29th. Lastly, we will be having a bus evacuation drill on Monday morning at 8:50 AM.

Thanks for donating to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund. The school raised just under $2,000. Congratulations to the teachers and students!

We discussed algorithms for adding and subtracting numbers this week. Students worked with a partner on a math challenge called “Cracking the Muffin Code”.

During writing periods this week, students were diligently working on a 5-paragraph story on the creation of a gooey material called Flubber. Awesome work on the story!

The book report project is due on Friday, the 29th. Students have a choice for the project, a diorama, mobile or postcard. I have shared a few examples of the projects during reading time. I also have posterboard available for the postcard. If you have any questions about the book report, please let me know. Students, don’t wait until Thursday night to get this project done.

Mini-volcanoes were built out of wallpaper paste, paper and a plastic bottle. The constructed volcano was a replica of the research volcano that the students worked on. We will move on to sedimentary rocks and fossils next week.

Thanks for turning in your child’s questionnaire information sheet. I have been signing the assignment book at the end of each day. As a result, fewer assignments have been incomplete this week. Let’s hope this trend continues.

I attended a workshop on “Instructional Rounds” yesterday at the Tuck Learning Center. The substitute raved about the class. Hurrah!

Have a wonderful fall weekend. Warm and sunny weather ahead. Enjoy the warmth while it lasts.                                               Fondly,

                                                  Mr. Schmitt

Friday, September 15, 2017

Update # 3

                                                                                           Educational Update # 3
                                                                                           Week of September 11-15, 2017

Everyone made it through the first full week of school. Actually, I thought the week went by very fast. I hope your son/daughter felt the same.

Thanks for attending the Open House last night. I hope you found the evening very informative! Congratulations to our estimation winners, Mike LaNigra and Marie Tobin. Mike won the Hershey Kisses with a guess of 156 and an actual amount of 151. Not bad, Mike! Marie won the 20 pound and 2 ounce pumpkin with a guess of 19 pounds. Congrats! Neither of you let the pressure get to you!

I am very proud of the Student Council candidates from our class. I wish I could have taken all of you. Our representatives for the year are Cam Crombie and Caroline Powley. Student Council begins this Tuesday morning at 8:00 AM.

I am looking forward to seeing many of our students in Sports Medley starting this Thursday, the 21st. It should be lots of fun!

We took a look at igneous rock types this week during science time. In addition, students answered the question, “Where in the world are volcanoes located?” by examining various continental maps.

We have 3 reading groups this year, the Unikitties, Pink Frizzles, and Einsteins. Each reading group is reading a different chapter book. I’ve asked everyone to bring an independent reading book to class with them (each and every day). Book report project ideas will be shared on Monday. The project is due on September 29th.

Please continue to donate to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund.

I will be introducing DreamBox to the students next week. DreamBox will replace IXL as the online math program designed to complement classroom instruction.

I heard that the LSS cross country team did very well at the first meet on Wednesday afternoon. Congratulations to all of the runners, especially the ones from room 103.

The kids took a math quiz today. We will continue to look at addition and subtraction algorithms next week.  

Have a wonderful weekend. It’s starting to look a little bit like fall outside. We just need to work on the temperature.                                                
                                            Fondly,

                                        Keith Schmitt