Spring Creek Cardinals
4th Grade Newsletter
MAY 2016 EDITION
It is heating up at recess!
4th grade recess is at 1:00 in the afternoon. We are already reaching temperatures in the upper 80's and we may have reached 90° once or twice. It would be wise to have your kids bring a water bottle daily to take to recess. This week they have come in very red faced. Although we stop for a drink when we come inside, some extra water throughout the day and while outside would be beneficial. Thanks!
Growing a heart for Kindness
You may not be aware, but many of our 4th grade students are participating in a great service project during recess. Students are helping to sort and fold clothes that will be in Chrissy's Closet.
What is Chrissy's Closet? A free store for CSISD students to obtain new or gently used clothes, shoes, coats, and personal hygiene items once per month.
Nearly 35% of CSISD’s population qualifies for Free or Reduced Lunch. This means 4,272 students may not have access to items needed to arrive at school clean, warm, and ready to learn. Currently, 78 of our students are considered homeless. Our goal is to help students and their families to feel positively about themselves, CSISD, and attending
- Families with one or more CSISD student or any CSISD employee may visit the clothing closet once per month. Five items per student/employee per month will be allowed
The store will open August 1st of 2016 at College View High School.
Math in May
This last week of April the students have been working hard getting ready for the math STAAR on May 9th. We have been reviewing concepts that we have been learning since the beginning of the year during our “Math Training Camp”. Ask your child about acting as a lawyer to “defend or prosecute” their answer choices. We have also played a matching game and “slapped down” our answers. After a group review, they work with their “team” to complete a team challenge about the topic reviewed. Once everything is correct on the challenge, then they complete an individual challenge. They are working hard on those challenges so they can earn lots of points. They earn points for questions answered correctly the first time attempted. The points earned go for a water
balloon battle at the end of the school year. They are extremely excited about the water balloons!
This week we will continue reviewing different concepts using different activities and earning more points. The idea is to make reviewing fun, engaging as well as educational.
Once the STAAR test is over, we will be working on a project that uses math in real life situations. Plans for the project need to be finalized, but it will involve research on the computer. If your child has a laptop or a tablet that you will allow them to take to school, I will let you know when we will need those.
I can’t believe that this school year is almost over. I have truly enjoyed teaching your children this year. Watching them all grow in their math understandings has been wonderful. They are such great kids and I expect great things from them during their school careers and beyond. The best thing I have heard from them all year long is, “I love math”. It’s something that I haven’t heard very often in the many years I’ve been teaching. Usually I hear how students don’t like math or aren’t good at math. Your children have made teaching math a joy this year and I feel truly blessed to have been
their teacher. Thank you for sharing them with us.
Writing-Students have embarked on their final writing project of the year. Each student has selected their own topic and type of publication. Student ideas range from poetry books, nonfiction research articles, graphic novels, chapter books, etc. It is neat to see them applying all the skills they have learned throughout the year. Students are taking the freedom to write seriously. They are excited and focused. I can't wait to send you home their final publication in May.
Reading-We are preparing for the final STAAR reading test on May 10th. We have done several activities to improve students skills with inferencing. A fun activity we just completed uses 2 nonfiction articles. Students read the 2 articles and then record a WOW fact, interesting fact, new fact, most important fact, cool fact, and useful fact. Then each partner groups their facts together, such as the cool fact and useful fact each one has written. From the information listed in the cool and useful facts, students create one inference that represents the information.
Once the STAAR test is over, students will begin their final unit, an author study, Students will choose an author to study. Students will examine the authors work for a particular craft. This will help your child improve their own writing by knowing the techniques professional authors use.
I am sending home this week the final scholastic book order. Book orders will be due back on Friday, May 6. I tell the kids that if they really want a book they should offer to do some extra chores to earn the money. I want to thank you for purchasing books for your child. Not only has every student grown in their desire to read, but our classroom library has grown by 60 new free books. Every time a student purchases a book through the book order a teacher earns points which can be used to "buy" books. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Also, if you clean out your children's book shelf I would love to grow the classroom library some more. Feel free to donate them to Mrs. Dungan.
I will truly miss this great group of kids when our final school days are completed. This is my first year teaching fourth grade and I couldn't have asked for better students and families to work with. Your child holds a special place in my heart.
SCIENCE/SOCIAL STUDIES Update
In Social Studies:
We will finish up our study of Texas History this week as we look at the pride of Texas and the six flags that have flown over Texas.
As we finish the year, we will apply our knowledge of producers and the various types of consumers to the relationships they have with each other in food webs and ecosystems. We will also look at life cycles. Our mealworms have been hanging out in our classroom this past week. Students have watched them move around and eat. Once we finish our investigations with them, each student will have the option to take home a mealworm in a little container. I will email you the day before they come home. Lastly we will look at adaptations, inherited and learned traits. My plan is to take our Spring CBM May 19.
This is my 16th year to teach in CSISD and by far this has been a truly amazing and blessed year. I never would have guessed my first year teaching 4th grade would have been this awesome!
Thank you for your support and sharing your wonderful student with me.
END OF THE YEAR EVENTS...
We have some exciting things happening this last month of 4th grade.
Here are a few so you can get them on your calendar.
Field Trip on May 17th – We are going to Adamson Lagoon for our 4th grade trip to the pool. We will be swimming from 10 am until noon. After the pool we will take the bus over to a Park to eat our lunches and play outside. Because we will be going to CAMP before we leave for the pool, we encourage the students to wear their swimsuits under their clothes, but be sure to bring a set of clothes in a bag or backpack to change into when we leave the pool so that they have dry clothes for the park. As far as swimsuits, students should consider modesty when choosing a swimsuit to wear that day. Girls need to wear a one piece suit or a suit that covers their middle. If they don’t have one, a t-shirt should be worn over the suit. No bikinis will be allowed. Please also have your child bring a towel and sunscreen. Sack lunches can be purchased from the cafeteria or your child can bring their own sack lunch.
A field trip permission slip will be coming home in Monday Folders.
May 20th Field Day – Field Day at Spring Creek will be coming soon. Each grade level will compete in a half- day of fun activities. Details coming soon.
End of the Year Awards Program - May 27th is the final day of school. It is also a half day and a day to celebrate our 4th graders. More information will be coming from the office, but just so you can get it on your own calendar, there will be a short awards program that morning with our 4th graders as the stars. They will end the program with a final walk around the school to the cheers of the rest of our students and teachers. The morning can be quite emotional for students, teachers and parents as we celebrate the wonderful first year we have had at Spring Creek Elementary!
Water Balloon Battle – The day for this is yet to be determined, however it will be the last week of school. But, we need your help to make this event successful. First, we need donations of water balloons. According to the students, the more the better. You can find them for sale in the outdoor section of stores like Walmart, Target, Academy or the dollar stores. Once we have the water balloons and a day has been selected for the battle, we need parents/students who would be willing to fill the water balloons and deliver them to school the morning of our battle. The best way to deliver them is in an ice chest partly filled with water to prevent the filled balloons from popping prematurely.
If you want to donate the water balloons, just send them with your child. If you’re willing to fill the balloons, email your child’s homeroom teacher.
Thank you for your help with this fun event for our students.
May 9th - STAAR Math
May 10th - STAAR Reading
May 10th - Taco Casa Spirit Day
May 17th - Fourth grade field trip to Adamson Lagoon
May 20th - Field Day