Thursday, February 22, 2018

A Prideful Pack


Such a prideful pack of 3rd graders!

Our assembly was a hit! 

Click HERE to view our fun and informative video. 

If you'd like a copy on USB flash drive, just send one in with your child. I'll get the copy on and to you immediately. 

Good Reads 

Here are a couple books from the week you should ask your child about. Your questions could strengthen your child's comprehension, demonstrate the value of reading to remember, and deepen the lessons from the stories. Thanks. 

Enjoy the video and have a good weekend.  

As always,

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Coming Attraction


Monday is a day off for the kids. We teachers have a professional development session to attend. 

Thursday morning, February 22, at 7:30, third grade will host an assembly. There will be a five-minute movie and short performance.

Here's a rather grainy (30 sec.) preview of the film The Deal of a Lifetime.

If you cannot attend, I will post the full movie Thursday afternoon. 

Enjoy your weekend,

Saturday, February 10, 2018



Two of five new bunnies (or 2/5)!

The Lingering Thought

Each day, I hope children apply manners learned and practiced at home. Just as I hope kids at home apply academic skills taught in school.  Emotional or academic development would be incomplete otherwise. Hello serendipity! A home reading routine joyfully matures both.  

Reading invites us into a community of knowledge and empathy. Think about it, the entire human experience has been documented for centuries. Reading is absolutely a human right. Gaining entry to our community, our humanity, our world of knowledge, however, takes effort. How much effort depends on the reader. 

So, if your child does not naturally gravitate to a comfy sofa, chair, pillow, or patch of grass with a welcomed book, you will have to help establish that reading routine. Keep in mind, please, the child who resists reading at home probably feels like reading is a chore, anywhere. We cannot make a child read, but we could convince one. So, how can we help your child fall in love with a relaxing reading routine at home?

At this point, I could add a million internet links, but I’ll write out a few thoughts instead (with just a couple links). 

·      Be a model reader. Routinely take time to sit and read for yourself (e.g. even, sorry, print out work so your child can see you read paper, recyclable paper). Let your child appreciate the knowledge you gain and, preferably, when it's not work, sense the pleasure you experience. Love reading or, with luck,  convincingly pretend to.

·      Fill your home with reading material. This could mean books, but magazines can be terrific too. Take a look here. And note that there are online magazine subscriptions. Who doesn’t like getting mail, eh?

·      If you cannot fill your home with books, allow your child to use RAZ-Kids instead. There are over 1200 fun titles of all genres available to you as an AISB family. Why not use it? 

·      Value what your child reads. Ask about connections from a story to your child’s or your family's life. Find out what the main idea of the story was and any important details. If the response lacks substance, sit and review the story with your child to discover key points together. Share and value the reading experience. 

·      Listen to your child read occasionally. A fluent reader will read with no or little hesitation. If your child struggles to read aloud, the text may not necessarily be instructional or yield meaningful thoughts. Therefore, encourage reading where the main idea and details are retrievable with a reasonable effort. In doing so, you will be promoting deeper thinking skills through comprehensible practice and decoding skills will improve in that process.

·      Finally, have a look at this slideshow of everyday reading routines suggested by I love the closet converted to a reading nook idea, as well as reading the words around you (e.g. menus, signs, labels). So, help make reading fun! Hey! Arrange reading playdates! There's an idea!

Smiling Faces!

Okay, after all that writing, I'll let the photos and your child explain the week.

Colossal cake for the Ram!

Fun with brains!

 Sharp Graphers

After school activities

Enjoy your weekend!



Friday, February 2, 2018

Brainy Stuff




In mid-March, we will be having a "Mother Tongue" week.  Among other activities, elementary families will be invited in to read with their child(ren) in their mother tongue as a kick off activity for the week on the morning of Monday, March 12th.   In preparation for this, we are reaching out to parents to find out which books (and in which languages) they plan to bring so we can put a list together celebrating the linguistic diversity of our families.  Could you please get back to me with answers to the following questions:

What language is your child's mother tongue? ___________________
What book(s) will you bring to read?  Title:   _____________________________________________   Author: ____________________________________

If you need some help getting a book in your child's mother tongue, please let us know and we will help find one.


What's the story with the orange and that brain? Ask your child. But, I must say, the orange, like the human it portrayed, survived being impaled. Whoa! And the orange, with its many yummy sections, did a magnificent teaching job. 

To prompt recall just say "Phineas Gage." 

For the next few weeks, in science mostly, we will be learning about the brain. Our next assembly will showcase what we have studied. 

Here's a preview:


Reading books, especially fiction, improves the brain (and emotional intelligence) forever! Here's some research to support the claim.  

The benefits of reading, like true quality sleep, are indisputable. I looked! Nothing. Not one negative article about either. Only glorious praise for these two life and brain enhancing activities. 


Studies have shown that the brain thrives on new and challenging activities.   

This week the kids learned Sudoku, Fubuki, Hidato, and Shikaku. 

So did I! We love puzzles! 


I've often thought I'd catch classroom doodlers not paying attention but it rarely happens. They somehow remain attentive. Now I know why and how pencil play (i.e. doodling or drawing) is yet another brain strengthening activity. 

They're actually drawing brains. 

More on the brain sketches later. 


Yep, our brains loves to boogie, baby. Learning and remembering dance steps is groovy for brain health. At least that's what the brainiacs said at Harvard Medical School


Our brains use ____% of the calories or energy we eat. Ask your child about the surprising answer and eat healthy choices. 

More on those choices and a lot more brain boosting lessons from the third grade next time. 

More on the new face next time, too. For now, I think that's mustard. 

Have a stimulating weekend!

p.s. Report cards went home today. Look in the bag if you haven't seen it yet.