Week of February 18-22, 2019

A Note from Miss Boron

On this Friday before the President’s Day long weekend, I am happy to share that AR Reading Tests are alive and well in Grade Five.  After learning that my class has not been giving them much attention when they go to the library, I have made them a very high priority.  As a result, my class has written down in their assignment pads that they will be reading during the long weekend; their chosen book was taken home with them, and on Tuesday, I will be checking their progress.  Wednesday will be the day that many of my students will be taking their next test.  Some children took their test yesterday (February 14th) or today (February 15th).  Those students have begun new novels and will be preparing for their next test.  Please help me by making sure that your child is spending a part of their leisure time reading.  Thank-you…

Fifth Grade This Week

Throughout the week, our class has had about 33% of our students absent every day. Many new skills that were to be presented, I chose not to because of the numerous absences due to illness. I share that as an explanation of repeating lesson plans.

Religion. The students are memorizing The Ten Commandments; their oral test will be on Thursday. The study sheet is in their homework folder and accompanied them home over the long weekend. Additionally, they will be interpreting The Greatest Commandment with illustration and creative writing to supplement Father’s homily message during the children’s Mass on Wednesday.

Reading. Today, Friday, the class took their final essay test on the final chapters of Shiloh. Yahoo!! As a culminating activity for this novel, they will be in receipt of directions for a research project. I have not completed my write-up yet, but they should be receiving them by the end of next week. I think they will enjoy the topic I have chosen for their poster board presentation.

We will spend the week working on a variety of comprehension skills, such as reading for details and identifying story elements. Also, our oral reading is focused on improving fluency with attention to punctuation and vocal inflection.

English. Yesterday, Thursday, I presented the difference among Simple, Compound, and Complex Sentences. Learning about independent and dependent clauses is closely related to their mastery of comma usage with conjunctions. That particular skill will be introduced along with using commas in a series of words.

Spelling. As you know, your child was not studying for a spelling test this past week. I decided to make some changes in my teaching of spelling, so though my list of words and sentences has been created, I will not distribute the list until I have the extra activities planned in a cohesive, built-for-success way.

Sixth Grade Next Week

Religion. My sixth grade students will be visiting Old Testament stories. Both reveal God’s leading of nations to freedom. The first is Jacob’s family moving to Egypt and prospering there. The second, and more familiar one, is Moses’s acceptance of God’s mission for him to lead the Hebrew people out of slavery.

Reading. Using the context of our anthology’s stories, the students will be looking for examples of cause and effect. The primary source for this learning will be the story “The Pretty Pennies Picket”. This was finished being orally read on Thursday. Also, we will be continuing our work on the comprehension skills of reading for details and connecting a given text to what we already know about that topic.

English. I have been spending much time doing the all-encompassing “Daily Language Review” skill sets. I am happy to say that I can see their mechanics skills steadily growing as we edit sentences for errors. Also, our workbook has daily maintenance exercises that effectively teach a wide variety of objectives, including sentence diagramming. We will continue doing this work along with the long-awaited structured lessons on correct period use. Actually, we have started taking our notes on all the different ways periods are used, but we have not done written activity work yet. That will occur this upcoming week.

Well…I think I was a bit wordy in my newsletter this week, but if you are still reading, it means you hung in there with me and will allow me to wish you a lovely long weekend with your family. I hope that it will be a safe one, too. The 4th, 5th, and 6th graders and I prayed for your safe holiday weekend during our after-meal grace at lunch today.

Warm regards,

Miss L. Boron

Week of February 11th-February 15th

A Word From Miss Boron

Did you miss hearing from me? It appears that my last week’s newsletter is floating around in cyberspace somewhere. Thank goodness for new beginnings, right?

My class and I will be celebrating Valentine’s Day a day late because of our special classes that we have on Thursday afternoon, preventing us from having our party on the actual day. We will celebrate on Friday afternoon with the traditional activity of passing out cards to ALL of our classmates, and enjoy some treats in the process. Thank-you for helping us to make this a fun activity.

Below, please find a list of activities and skills that I will be teaching next week.

Fifth Grade This Week

Reading. If hodgepodge is a word, we will be working on an organized hodgepodge of reading skills, primarily ones that work on differing levels of comprehension. For example, we will be working on sentence comprehension, word study, paragraph comprehension, whole story comprehension, and finding examples of sarcasm and understatement in the context of the story.

English. Compound sentences and independent clauses will precede my introduction of the skill “using commas in a series”.

Spelling/Vocabulary. Our list of words are antonyms. They are conveniently placed in pairs for the students study of them.

Religion. A saint study will begin our week. The students will working with a partner to research interesting facts about the life of St. Isaac Joques. Then, we will continue our work on morality in our lives, living lives that exemplify our friendship with Jesus.

In conclusion, may I personally wish you a wonderful Valentine’s Day. It was always one of my favorite days as a child. It is my hope that my class will enjoy the sweet and kind sentiments that this day is noted for…with a little chocolate sprinkled in to make it even better.

Kind regards,

Miss L. Boron

January 21st-January 25th

A Note From Miss Boron

Are you enjoying your long holiday weekend thus far?  I think it would be appropriate for me to label this coming week as “Getting back in the groove” week…the past two weeks of MAP testing certainly affected our normal schedule, however, the valuable information received collectively will help me drive my instruction for the upcoming weeks.  I will be returning back to some very basic reading skills in both the 5th and 6th grades, along with sharpening language skills in sentence editing, punctuation, grammar, and reference skills.

The premise of returning to the “basics” is quite straightforward–frequent, focused, and repetitive practice leads to the mastery of those skills presented.  I will be using a tried and true resource for the daily language review that follows an all-encompassing scope and sequence.  Most of the work will be done in the classroom; some may  come home as a homework assignment.

Below are my lessons planned for this week.

Fifth Grade This Week

Religion.   Most every student did a beeeee-utiful job reciting the “Act of Love” to me; an index card with their grade will be in their blue folder.  Our next prayer to memorize will be the “Act of Faith”.  This week, I am going to begin the unit of morality, connecting that topic to children’s literature.  I have chosen the story, “George Washington and the Cherry Tree”, to institute a conversation about how the conscience, or Holy Spirit, affects our choices.  I anticipate some thought-provoking conversations to be happening during the upcoming weeks as we delve into the many branches of the “Making Good Choices” tree.

Reading.      As mentioned above, I am going to be doing many lessons that teach or review comprehension boosting skills.  Some of the skills this week will be:  using time order words to determine tense, using text information to find story elements, and paragraph comprehension.

English.        On Tuesday, the class will be receiving a list of editing marks that they will be using to proofread sentences.  That will be used as a reference for their daily language review work.  Additionally, a new unit on figurative language will be started; I have planned us to begin with synonyms and antonyms.

Sixth Grade This Week

Religion.         As mentioned last week, we will be learning about Ordinary Time in the liturgical year.

Reading.          Like the fifth grade students, my sixth graders will be doing reading activities that will boost their comprehension skills.  This week, I am using a non-fiction article called “Green Thumbs” that tells about a group of students that work on a neighborhood project, beautifying a vacant lot.  It also makes a nice connection to being good stewards of God’s creation.  A variety of skills will be practiced inclusive of comprehension, work study, and extension activities.

English.           Also like the fifth grade students, we will be using the resource, Daily Language Review, to practice editing, writing and language usage skills.

Well…I am afraid that I got a bit wordy in my newsletter this week.  Oh well, as Popeye the Sailor Man was famous for saying, “I yam what I yam, and that’s all I yam”.  I shared that quote with my students this week while we were talking about embracing who we are, and I suppose those words are just as effective for grown-ups, too, right?

May your weekends be happily spent and do try to stay warm on Monday–Brrrrr…

Regards,

Miss L. Boron

Week of January 14th-January 18th

A Note From Miss Boron

Yikes!  I had forgotten how much time standardized testing, and all of the steps involved with it, take.  As I shared with you in last week’s newsletter, the 5th and 6th grade students were spending Tuesday and Thursday doing map testing for Reading and Language.  Next week, Science and Math will be tested, again on Tuesday and Thursday mornings.  The students work at differing speeds, so the average amount of work time has taken us closer to eleven-ish on those two mornings.  I am thinking that history might repeat itself next week during our testing, so my plans will seem very similar to last weeks because many of them did not get accomplished.  Additionally, our special classes on Wednesday and Thursday afternoons absorb almost the whole afternoon, from 1:00 to 3:00.  Thankfully, we will be done with testing by the first week of February, and our instructional schedules will go back to our routine.

Fifth Grade Next Week

Religion.      Before we begin our unit on morality, the class will engage in activities about the life of St. Francis, the patron saint of animals.  I especially like the timing of this saint study, because it correlates with our reading of Shiloh.  We will learn some interesting things about his life (he is believed to have begun the tradition of nativity scenes), and his living a life of poverty though he came from a very wealthy family.

Reading.       Though it may not seem like we are, we are making progress in our novel reading.  We are halfway through the book, so I am hopeful that we will be done by the end of February.  It is such a fine read–all of the themes presented like love of family, friendship, animal abuse and rescue, and appreciation of diversity are gently woven in to this award-winning book.  So, perhaps slow and steady is not such a bad thing…

English.          The students wrote down the next test date in their agendas.  It is January 16th; it will be on lessons 3.5-3.8.  The only new topic that needs to be covered before our review begins is adjectives that compare.

Spelling.          Because of two shorter weeks coming up soon, I am not going to give a new word list out on Monday.  As you know, your students do not have school on January 18th or January 21st.

Sixth Grade Next Week

Religion.           We will begin our session that teaches about Ordinary Time in the Liturgical year.  It is not to be considered as common time, but 33 to 34 weeks of counted time before the Lent season begins.

Reading.            We did not do what I had planned for this week, so next week we will do those reading skills that prepare us for a new anthology of stories on those in history that are famous for taking a stand.  With Black History month on the horizon, a very good person to begin with is the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr.  Because the  6th grade students will only  be in my classroom for two days next week, I anticipate that we will primarily build background and share what we already know about him and the civil rights movement.

English.                If we finish up our lesson on linking verbs Monday, I would like to have a written assessment on Wednesday.  However, I am not certain that they will be ready, so that may happen the following week.

According to the news, our weather is going to be rainy and very chilly this weekend.  Whatever you do with your children, please do it safely and comfortably.

Warm regards,

Miss Boron

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Week of January 7th-January 11th

A Note From Miss Boron

Over the Christmas holiday vacation, I was going through some  cookbooks looking for favorite cookie recipes.  In one of them, there was a picture of a Nativity scene.  The words above the picture said “Wise men still seek Him.”  I thought those words were so beautiful in their simplicity.  I will work to promote this as a theme in my classroom–where we will work together as a class to use the days of this new year to get closer to Him.

Fifth Grade This Week

Religion.   In recognition of the Epiphany on January 6th, the students will be reading and answering questions about the Magi.  Then, our workbook affords the children a chance to write Jesus a spiritual gift.  That activity will be extended to a bulletin board display of decorated packages made by the students containing a written explanation of his/her gift to the baby Jesus.

Reading.     Yes…our reading of Shiloh continues, along with continuing comprehension exercises (i.e. reading response journaling and class discussion).

English.       Our skill work remains in the world of adjectives.  More particularly, those objectives are mastering the recognition and use of:  adjectives that tell how many, adjectives as subject complements, and adjectives that compare (the positive, comparative, and superlative degrees).  In addition to that, I would like to do some work on better sentence writing, presenting the traits of sentence fluency.

Sixth Grade This Week

Religion.       Remaining in our study of the Christmas season, we will be reading about the presentation of  the baby Jesus in the temple.  Back in Jesus’ time, it was customary to celebrate the birth of an Israelite couple’s son by presenting him to God.  The class will meet two people, Simeon and Anna, who rejoice at the sight of baby Jesus.  Could this be their recognition of Him as their long awaited Messiah?

Reading.         The week begins with my doing a written comprehension assessment.  The essay is entitled, “Ancient Civilizations”; it will be read silently, followed by the students independently writing responses to questions.  Then, in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, we will be reading and discussing his “I Have a Dream” speech.

English.            These skills  will be presented:  Intransitive Verbs and Linking Verbs.  I know that does not sound like a healthy list of new skills, but the 5th and 6th grade classes will be doing testing two days next week (on Tuesday and Thursday).  They will not be changing classes on those days.

Please mark your new calendars with a reminder that Tuesday, January 8th, is a PTO meeting.  The doors to Neglia Hall will open at 5:00.  Also, the grading period ends on January 9th, with our new PEHP program beginning on Friday.  Please have your child in his/her gym uniform on that day.

Speaking of uniforms, I am noticing that our dress code is not being followed very consistently by some students.  Please review the parent/student handbook for reminders about belts, sock color and height, and jewelry.  Thank-you.

May we be among those wise people who search for ways to find Jesus in our lives,

Warm Regards,

Miss Boron

Week of January 3rd-Jauary 4th

A Note From Miss Boron

This abbreviated week will allow the students to readjust being in school after their long Christmas vacation.  Please note the below activities that I have planned for those two days.

Fifth Grade This Week

Religion.  The Apostle’s Creed, also known as the Nicene Creed, will be read and interpreted.  So many prayers may often find themselves being said in a practiced routine format, without too much thought being given to their meanings.  There is a page in the student book that nicely helps the students to interpret what they are pronouncing with that prayer being said.

Reading.    The class and I are falling in love with Shiloh, the beagle that is a main character in the novel Shiloh.  Though I happened upon it accidentally, it has created for some interesting and insightful class discussions; the theme of friendship and love for all of God’s creation, especially those that are in need of care and love, are beautiful messages for our young people to encounter.

English.       Our unit on adjectives continues; we will be focusing on those descriptive words that tell how manythese are not just numerical words.  Words like “several” and “few” would be in this classification of adjectives.

Sixth Grade This Week

Religion.       With the importance of knowing about and understanding other faith traditions, the sixth grade students will be learning about Passover and the Seder meal.

Reading.        Because we only changed classes one time during the week before Christmas vacation, the students will be finishing their reading of “The People on the Beach” orally, with an open-book assessment to be given on Friday.

English.           We have made real progress on learning the principal parts of verb tenses (past participle, present participle, past, and present), so our graduation gift is our movement to  transitive versus intransitive verbs.  These are related to doers and receivers of the verb’s action.

Our first full week back will include some standardized testing to be done.  The Map Testing and Fountas/Purnell Testing will take place on Tuesday and Thursday of that week.  These same tests were given at the beginning of the school year, so the students will be familiar with the procedures and format.

The year of 2019 is upon us; let us pray that we recognize the blessing of each day.

Warm regards,

Miss Boron

 

 

December 10th-December 14th

A Note From Miss Boron

We have accomplished much this week, and I look forward to our doing the same next week (meaning December 10th-December 14th).

Fifth Grade This Week

Religion.  With our Advent activities taking a bit more time than I anticipated, we will be spending time this week on the Fruits of the Holy Spirit.  Also, we sill learn about St. Alphonsus Liguori.

Reading.  Having just begun the novel, Shiloh, we will be working on that until the end of January.  We are doing in-class comprehension activities to accompany each chapter.

English.  A test will be given on Tuesday, December 11th.  The students have written in their agendas the pages in their textbooks that they need to be studying.  Each skill that will be tested has been presented in class, teacher-driven notes have been taken on that skill, and written or oral practice has been done to reinforce the objective.  Now, all that remains is your child’s studying.

Sixth Grade This Week

Religion.  The students will have a test on Monday on the Advent words and definitions that we have been reviewing.  We will spend the remainder of the week studying about people and symbols important to Advent (for example, Mary, Joseph, John the Baptist, the Jesse Tree, and the Advent candle colors).

Reading.    Our week begins by doing some reading skills that are also connected to the subject of English.  One of them is the correct use of time order words to make one’s writing more sensible; for example, if time order words were not used, we would not know what happened when.  Some examples of these words:  meanwhile, immediately, morning…)  Also, we will continue our oral reading and discussion of the story, “The People on the Beach”.

English.  We are getting into some of the more complex types of verbs that sixth grade students need to recognize and correctly identify and use.  This week we will study some verbs that cause trouble because of their misuse:  lie/lay  sit/set  rise/raise  let/leave  and teach/learn.  We will define them clearly and have ample opportunities to practice their correct usage.  Also, we will be practicing transitive verbs (those verbs that show the action of passing from a doer to a receiver).

In closing, I know just how busy and harried this time of the year can get.  I hope that you are able to have some relaxing moments to relish in the beauty that this season always offers.  May God’s blessings remind you of His love…

Warmly,

Miss L. Boron

 

Week of December 3rd-December 7th

Fifth Grade This Week

Religion.     In conjunction with our celebrating the season of Advent with a variety of activities, my students will be learning about the Fruits (Gifts) of the Holy Spirit.  These qualities are ones that it is believed the Messiah lived His life by; our blessing is that the third person of the Trinity is helping us try to live the same way.

Reading.       I will be giving each student a reading response folder that I have created for them.  They will be using these to write their reflections and thoughts during and after the reading of upcoming selections.  Primarily they will be kept at school for their in-class use.  Also, I will review the skill of browsing a selection and then, making predictions and/or inferences afterward.

English.         Intermingled with our continued work on adjectives, the maintenance exercises being done in the workbook provide many opportunities to review those skills that seem unfamiliar to them at this time.  I am happy with the way that our diagramming is progressing; this also gives the students more practice identifying the parts of speech of our language.

Spelling.        The class brought their spelling list home over the weekend to finish their preparation for our Tuesday test.  I am having them practice writing the words in cursive as a part of their studying process.

Sixth Grade This Week

Religion.        Using the glossary in the back of our Religion book, the class will be highlighting those words that are related to the season of Advent.  They will memorize their meanings for a test the following week.  The “why” of this assignment is to make this time of preparation for Jesus’ birth a more meaningful one to them.

Reading.         I have chosen a selection called “The People on the Beach” to complement the theme of ancient civilizations.  In this nonfiction piece, we will be learning about the eruption of Mount Vesuvius and its destructive force.  Also, they will be practicing their note-taking and research skills on a lesson that I have prepared about the seven wonders of the world.  That will occur at the week’s beginning.

English.           Seeing a need to do more in-depth skill review as a result of our maintenance exercise drills (we are taking notes on those skills that gave them trouble), along with more practice working with prepositions, we have not moved on to the chapter on verbs.  Though I am concerned about this slower pace that we are moving at, I believe it is essential that the students show a solid understanding of the present material being presented before moving on to new skills.

In conclusion, I would like to remind you of our upcoming field trip to the Koger Center.  I have most of the permission slips; if you have not yet done so, please remember to send in the $10 cost for this holiday show.

Also, a very special thanks to the parents of Zion in my 5th grade class.  This week on Tuesday, we were treated to Zion’s father’s family recipe for homemade biscuits and sausage gravy.  It was a first for me, heralding from Ohio, to taste something that I have heard is authentic Southern cooking.  I am a convert…it was simply delicious.  The children enjoyed it so much, and it was such a nice way for us to celebrate the cultures representative of our families.

May your upcoming week be a safe, happy, and faith-filled one,

Miss L. Boron

 

Week of November 26th-November 30th

A Note From Miss Boron

Well…we are now entering one of the busiest times of our school year, with special activities abounding that make staying focused on the academic part of our school year a bit more challenging.  However, it always has a way of working out well, and our missions get accomplished…with fun sprinkled throughout to help make the season the happy one it is meant to be.

Fifth Grade This Week

Religion.     We will have a week of lessons on Advent–waiting for the birth of Jesus and His second coming.  Studying this special time of the Liturgical year helps to remind the children about the real reason for Christmas; also, revisiting the simple majesty of Jesus’ birth together as a class will build a stronger understanding of His meaning in our lives.

English.         Doing the maintenance exercises in our English workbook has helped me to see some of those skills that my students need to be retaught or reviewed.  With that said, we are switching gears from sentence parts and structure to the world of adjectives.  The lessons this week will include those of descriptive adjectives and the proper use of the articles a, an, and the.

Reading.        The next few reading selections are focused on a new theme:  heritage.  By definition, heritage is transmitted or acquired from a predecessor.  It includes customs, beliefs, and values that have been passed to us by our ancestors.  It is my goal that the students will gain a better understanding of different cultures that we visit, and more importantly, gain a deeper appreciation for their own heritage.  “Love As Strong As Ginger” is a lovely story about a young girl’s exposure to her grandmother’s job, working in a cannery cracking crabs for  six dollars a day.  Mixed within the story line is a peek at the Chinese culture, and the real life struggles of a Chinese immigrant’s life in the 1960s.

Sixth Grade This Week

Religion.     Like the fifth grade students, the sixth graders will be preparing for the season of Advent in an interesting way.  The Old Testament tells how God prepared the people of that time for the coming of the Messiah.  Much later, we have John the Baptist that proclaimed Jesus’ coming.

English.        We will finish up some introductory work on prepositions and move onto verbs, more distinctly, the principle parts of verbs (for example, the present, past, and past participle forms of verbs).  Within this area of study, the students will be introduced to auxiliary verbs, more commonly known as “helping” verbs.

Reading.        I am looking forward to our next anthology’s theme:  Ancient Civilizations.  Whenever students get a chance to read about archaeology and archaeological digs, the interest is quite palpable.  Pictures from some old National Geographic magazines certainly helps, too.

In conclusion, please remember to initial or sign your child’s blue folder.  That is my assurance that you have seen its contents…thank you for that.

As the Christmas carol reminds us…

It’s the hap-happiest time of the year…

sometimes, all the extra “stuff” that accompanies this time distance us from the magic of the time.  So, aren’t we the fortunate ones since our children will help us see that magic and happiness through their own excitement.  The most beautiful part is sharing with them the birth of one little baby over two thousand years ago.

Blessings to you,

Miss L. Boron

 

Week of November 19th-23rd

A Note From Miss Boron

Our upcoming shortened week reminds us that a special holiday is in the near future.  As Father Linsky shared with us in his homily, we need to be reminded that, amidst all of the favorite foods and time spent with those we love, the word “thank-you” needs to be a key part of the celebration.  I hope your children will remember his words, and that you will hear that word spoken in your direction.  I would like to send my thank-you to all for your welcomes, supportiveness, and help.  With the two-day week, we will primarily be doing work that is “tying up loose ends”, rather than introducing new skills.

Despite their not being homework over the vacation, please have your child spend some time reading a good book.  I would like the students to be choosing more Newberry Award winning books; I believe that Barnes & Noble has a separate table for these books, and there are many to choose from.

Please receive my wishes for your blessed Thanksgiving…

Warm regards,

Miss L. Boron