Paint Mines field trip, Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Paint Mines formations

Our science field trip to the Paint Mines Interpretive Park in El Paso County is scheduled for Wednesday, May 22. It’s my favorite activity of the year and is both challenging and unusual.

The link to where you can complete the online permission slip was sent two weeks ago to all fourth grade parents via email (the deadline to complete it is Monday, May 20th). Once the form is completed online, all that is required of you is to send $9 for your student’s bus fare (parent volunteers ride for free).

Your student will need a disposable sack lunch and drink and lots of other stuff – more on that later.

I have 14 parent volunteers to ride on the school bus and act as field guides. Volunteers will receive their list of the kids in their group by Wednesday morning. If you’re one of the gluttons for punishment and have questions about your chaperone duties, please contact Mrs. Koenen or me.

Paint Mines formations

Super important information. I’ve warned the kiddos that this “ain’t no hippie field trip:”

  • Have your student eat a good breakfast and take in lots of fluids.
  • There is no shelter on this trip other than the outhouses at the beginning and end of the hike. Also, there is no potable water available.
  • Students will be outdoors the entire time (about 4 hours) on high, wind swept plains and will hike a minimum of 4.3 miles on designated trails.
  • There are no outhouses along the trail.
  • Students must bring a backpack large enough to carry their own discarded layers of clothing, field guide and pencil, trail snacks and two or three containers of water.
  • Other suggested gear: sunscreen, handkerchief, hat, sunglasses, windbreaker, hand sanitizer or wipes, binoculars, gloves and camera.
  • Kiddos can wear street clothes that conform with Legacy Academy’s dress code for our trip.  Regardless, it’s über important to dress your student in layers in anticipation of temperature fluctuations (i.e., don’t put them in a t-shirt and ski jacket).
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Week 35 (May 13-17, 2013)

iPads and chargers (with cords) will be returned this week. Students will turn in their iPads and charger blocks on Thursday, April 16 Tuesday, May 21. You will be billed for the cost of any missing equipment and your child’s report card will be held as ransom until it is paid (Hey, I’m just the messenger).

MAP testing results for the academic year 2012-13 will be emailed to you this week. While results were already distributed with the 3rd quarter report cards and discussed with virtually all parents, if you have any lingering questions about how to decipher the information, please contact me before May 22.

An email with the link to complete the online permission slip to attend the May 22nd field trip to the Paint Mines was sent last week to all fourth grade parents (the deadline to complete it is Monday, May 20th). Only one email bounced back to me because of a funky email address. If you were that person (you’ll know because you didn’t receive the email), please contact Mrs. Koenen or me. Once the form is completed online, all that is required of you is to send $9 for your student’s bus fare (parent volunteers ride for free).

1 minute party

For your calendar:

  • Monday. After today, your student becomes a fifth grader in 7.5 “school” days.
  • WednesdayLibrary books are due.
  • Thursday. iPads and chargers are returned by students.
  • Friday. All school Dress of Choice
  • May 13-17 (all week) Spring MAP testing (language, science; make-ups), for an hour each morning..
  • May 22 (Wednesday), Paint Mines field trip, Calhan, 8:30-2:30.

Left Brain Right Brain

iPads. Please make certain your student brings a fully-charged iPad each morning.

How we’re working in the classroom:

  • Spelling. No spelling this week. Instead, they will create a story using 20 carefully selected spelling words and phrases.
  • Vocabulary. The class will study for their vocabulary test using their black and white notebooks.
  • Reading. Please have your student listen to the story at least one time at home during the week before iPads are turned in.
  • Math.  Ask your student to show you her/his progress in Moby Max. They took another baseline test to see their growth since January. I think you will be pleased. Also, write down and save their Moby Max username and password so they can continue to use it on their home computer or other device.
  • Science. All work will be done in the classroom using Discovery Education.
Liquid nitrogen plus 1,500 ping pong balls. What could go wrong?

Liquid nitrogen plus 1,500 ping pong balls:  what could go wrong?

Week 34 (May 6-10, 2013)

Spring Fling. So many parents from my classroom attended Spring Fling that I received a gift for their participation from PTO. It was a groovy night all around. Please send me any pictures of my band, Martyrs, taken last Saturday (with, of course, any flattering images of me) for our website. Thanks.

So, how was your day?

So, how was your day?

For your calendar:

  • Monday. After today, your student becomes a fifth grader in 12.5 “school” days.
  • WednesdayLibrary books are due and Star of the Week
  • ThursdayStar of the Week
  • May 6-10 (all week) Spring MAP testing (reading, writing, math; science), for an hour each morning.
  • May 9-10 (Thursday and Friday), Mother’s Day Flower Sale, Library, 8-4.
  • May 22 (Wednesday), Paint Mines field trip, Calhan, 8:30-2:30.

Idealist Realist Surrealist

iPads. Please make certain your student brings a fully-charged iPad each morning.

How we’re working in the classroom:

  • Spelling. All spelling words are on your kiddo’s iPad in their Google Drive. They know how to access them. Also, if they’ve done their Monday classwork, they will have them entered into their spelling app and can take pretest after pretest at home throughout the week.
  • Vocabulary. The class will use flashcards created on Quizlet.com to study the week’s vocabulary words. Again, their vocabulary words are listed each week in their iTunes U language arts course.
  • Reading. Please have your student listen to the story at least one time at home during the week.
  • Math.  Ask your student to show you her/his progress in Moby Math. Review with them any practice sets where they scored lower than 70% (they will be highlighted in yellow).
  • Science. All work will be done in the classroom using Discovery Education.

Rube Goldberg 6854654976

Week 32 (April 22-26, 2013)

Various 2012-13 photos can be seen here.

Race to Read (Week 5). Mr. T’s class is currently in 3rd (from last) place:

  • While optional, students are highly encouraged to participate in this 6 week incentive program to encourage reading at homeRace to Read started March 25, the Monday during our Spring Break.
  • Additional log sheets can be obtained from Mrs. Littlefield.
  • We are emphasizing honesty when filling out the log sheets. A parent’s signature is required with each completed sheet.
  • Just read, man!

iPad made of trees 375953_601436179867742_789766527_n

For your calendar:

  • May 4 (Saturday), Spring Fling Fiesta.” This is Legacy’s big annual fundraiser (my band, Martyrs, will be playing. Hope you can make it). Volunteers are needed with your hours tripled (details here).
  • May 9-10 (Thursday and Friday), Mother’s Day Flower Sale, Library, 8-4.
  • May 22 (Wednesday), Paint Mines field trip, Calhan, 8:30-2:30.

World's Pie Chart

iPads. Please make certain your student brings a fully-charged iPad each morning.

How we’re working in the classroom:

  • Spelling. All spelling words are on your kiddo’s iPad in their Google Drive. They know how to access them. Also, if they’ve done their Monday classwork, they will have them entered into their spelling app and can take pretest after pretest at home throughout the week.
  • Vocabulary. The class will use flashcards created on Quizlet.com to study the week’s vocabulary words. Again, their vocabulary words are listed each week in their iTunes U language arts course.
  • Reading. Please have your student listen to the story at least one time at home during the week.
  • Math.  Ask your student to show you her/his progress in Moby Math. Review with them any practice sets where they scored lower than 70% (they will be highlighted in yellow).
  • Science. All work will be done in the classroom using Discovery Education.

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Week 31 (April 15-19, 2013)

Various 2012-13 photos can be seen here.

Race to Read (Week 4). Mr. T’s class is currently in 3rd (from last) place:

  • While optional, students are highly encouraged to participate in this 6 week incentive program to encourage reading at homeRace to Read started March 25, the Monday during our Spring Break.
  • The 1st and 2nd reading log sheets were sent home in Monday Folders the week of parent/teacher conferences. A “Parent Information Letter” describing the program is printed on the back of the 1st sheet. Additional log sheets can be obtained from Mrs. Littlefield.
  • We are emphasizing honesty when filling out the log sheets. A parent’s signature is required with each completed sheet.
  • Just read, man!

Everyone Seems Normal

For your calendar:

  • Monday. After today, your student becomes a fifth grader in 26.5 “school” days.
  • WednesdayLibrary books are due and Star of the Week
  • ThursdayStar of the Week
  • Friday. All school Dress of Choice Day.
  • April 26. Teacher in-service (no school for students).
  • May 4 (Saturday), Spring Fling Fiesta.” This is Legacy’s big annual fundraiser (my band, Martyrs, will be playing. Hope you can make it).
  • May 22 (Wednesday). Paint Mines field trip, Calhan, 8:30-2:30.

488191_10151094012823469_1737364213_n

iPads. Please make certain your student brings a fully-charged iPad each morning.

How we’re working in the classroom:

  • Spelling. All spelling words are on your kiddo’s iPad in their Google Drive. They know how to access them. Also, if they’ve done their Monday classwork, they will have them entered into their spelling app and can take pretest after pretest at home throughout the week.
  • Vocabulary. The class will use flashcards created on Quizlet.com to study the week’s vocabulary words. Again, their vocabulary words are listed each week in their iTunes U language arts course.
  • Reading. Please have your student listen to the story at least one time at home during the week.
  • Math.  Ask your student to show you her/his progress in Moby Math. Review with them any practice sets where they scored lower than 70% (they will be highlighted in yellow).
  • Science. All work will be done in the classroom using Discovery Education.

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Thanks to everyone for a special year

At home, my family has finally become accustomed to my habit of calling my students, “my kids.” For example, I’ll see something on television that’s funny and will say to Sam and Sophie, my son and daughter, “My kids would love this.” For a time, they looked confused. Now they understand that in a tug-of-war for my attention and affection on an extended, daily basis, 28 fourth graders are formidable foes.

I begin each new academic year certain that my previous class was the “best ever.” Just as certainly I am proven wrong. This class was diverse, bright, and always challenging.  This group will be forever special and treasured by me because they were my first iSchool class.  I’m going to miss them all.  Keep them reading and writing this summer and have them stay in touch (drop me an email at dave.tallent@legacyk8.org).

My heartfelt thanks to everyone that volunteered this year. I couldn’t have done it without you, especially my Room Moms Mrs. Hashenberger and Mrs. Moore.  Nearly everyone participated in some way (often multiple times) whether hosting classroom/birthday parties, guiding field trips, administering spelling tests, setting up/tearing down for the Medieval Feast or Market Day, assisting in the dissection of sheep lungs, taking pictures during Talk Like a Pirate Day, sending me postmarked postcards, or working one-on-one with students in the classroom. The list goes ever on. Don’t get me started on the spontaneous gifts of coffee, chocolate, baked goods, and gift cards. I only hope I haven’t left something or someone out.

Also, you long-suffering parents: thank you for your comments, ideas, constructive criticism, support and patience throughout the year. Thirty odd weeks of car pools, tutorials, projects, and homework should earn you a citation. All I can offer is my sincerest “thank you.”

Paint Mines field trip update

Paint Mines

Click here for the basic lowdown on the field trip paying particular attention to the equipment list.

The Wednesday, May 16th weather forecast for beautiful Calhan calls for a high temperature of 77 degrees, a 30% chance for afternoon showers, and a 14 mph wind out of the southwest.  If the rain stays away, it looks to be a perfect day for hiking. That said:

  • the UV (sunburn) index will be “very high,” so bring your sunscreen,
  • dress appropriately (i.e., in layers) with a rain poncho, perhaps (we arrive around 9:30am and it will still be cool),
  • bring enough water (about 64 ounces, i.e., 8 ounces per half hour) and
  • trail food in addition to your disposable lunch and drink (examples: granola bars, toaster pastries, cookies, trail mix, dried fruit, Fig Newtons, M&M’s, sunflower seeds, hard candy, crackers, candy bars, or cheese)

Week 23 (January 30-February 3, 2012)

Click to see who’s our next Star of the Week.

Secure email accounts have been created for your student.  You will be able to access his/her email account at any time.  However, no one can use them until your consent form (sent out last Thursday) is signed and returned.  Fourth grade will make use of these accounts often.

Thanks to everyone who helped at/participated in the Medieval Feast.  I’m told lots of photos and video are on the way.

Science Fair is February 2.  Click here for the details.  I’ve fielded a bunch of questions this weekend.  Regarding your hypothesis, try to frame them as “if/then” statements.  Some student examples:

  • If carbonation increases chemical reactions, then adding baking soda to pop will increase the release of gases at a greater rate than other liquids.”
  • Since metal can handle the heat created by electricity, then an aluminum cup will keep a drink hot for a longer time than other materials.”
Class pictures will be taken this Friday.  Students must wear school uniforms.  No non-Legacy Academy sweatshirts may be worn in the pictures.

Flashcards. In the box.net sidebar to your right, “Week 23” includes Quizlet.com links to flashcards for:

Thanks to Mrs. Cook, first grade, for sharing.

Please check this blog and their planners each night:

Math.  All Tapes, and some Keyboards, will test this week. I’ll be reteaching concepts to select groups again this week.  All students need practice on multiplication facts and how to divide.

      Keyboards and Tapes should practice their multiplication facts daily at http://quizlet.com/421821 .

Daily Oral Language (DOL). Students edit two sentences daily in class using neu.annotate, an iPad app. Additionally, students will edit two similar sentences weekly for a quiz grade (to see if they can apply their newfound editing knowledge).

SpellingStudents are now copying their spelling words into their planners on Mondays:

  • NOTE: everybody has the same spelling list this week
  • NOTE:  they will be doing sentences that incorporate their spelling words, therefore, NO SPELLING TEST this week

Vocabulary. All students take a five word vocabulary test every Friday.

All testing in my classes will occur this Friday as follows (again, you can download printable study guides for reading and language arts at “Week 23″ in the sidebar on the right):

  • Daily Oral Language (DOL). They’ll practice test on some of the sentences edited each morning in class. Look for:
    • –Practice sentences, and
    • –Answer key (available Monday night)
  • Spelling.
    • –Spelling list (available Monday night)
  • Vocabulary.
    • –Vocabulary words (available Monday night)
  • Open Court. The reading comprehension exam will be comprised of short answer and multiple choice questions. It is always an “open book” test.
    • “Shadow of a Bull (study guide is NOT available online)