The Gower Gazette

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In The News...

It's hard to believe we are getting close to the end of our first quarter. Only two more weeks left. We have had a good week and worked hard!


Our Journey to Letterland this week took us on a review of short vowel sounds. The children also learned the stories for the digraphs: ch & qu. See if your child can share these stories with you. The boys and girls are doing great with their spelling assessments each week.


We had a fun time in literacy with our Books of the Week. Our 2 books this week were: The Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig and The True Story of the Three Little Pigs. Our objective this week was to use illustrations to describe the characters, setting and events within the story. The kids were so engaged as we took picture walks through each story. They shared great descriptions and made awesome predictions to what they thought was going to happen. Another objective we focused on this week was making comparisons between 2 texts. We compared each of our book of the weeks to the traditional story the Three Little Pigs. The children enjoyed collaborating and sharing ways these stories were alike and/or different. Our key vocabulary words this week were: illustrations, texts, describe, compare, & contrast.


We continued to work on personal narratives in writing this week. I modeled how to write a personal narrative about myself this week. The kids did a great job of conferencing with me as I wrote my story and helping me with spelling, capitalization, sentence starters, and punctuation. They were able to provide me with a compliment as well as a suggestion to help me improve my writing. It won't be long before the kids will be able to work together as writing buddies to conference and help one another improve their writing. We will continue to focus on personal narratives next week.


In Math we are continuing to work on addition with the use of Math Mountains. We have worked through solving story problems with a missing total and then moved toward looking at equations that have a missing addend. Our Math Stations centered around this and the kids had a really great time using technology to explore equations with missing addends. At Hands on Math the kids used a Kagan Strategy called Rally/Coach to solve missing addend equations using Math Mountains; one child solved while the other checked to see if it was right. Rally/Coach is as a great strategy to help students collaborate as well as provide support and instruction to students who may be struggling with a concept. The kids LOVED Math Game this week. We played Candlyland, but with a twist. All the colored cards were missing addend equations and then we had the candy pieces as well. The kids had to solve the equation before moving ahead. It was a fun way to work on math and play a familiar board game. At Math Lab the kids could choose between two math games that focused on missing addends: Missing Value Addition & Hit the Button Math. The kids were pretty engaged playing these computer games. At Working with Numbers the kids used the scanner app to solve various missing addend equations and then scanned the QR code to see if they got it right. At our iPad Station the kids continued to work on Front Row Ed. Missing Addends is a HARD concept for kids. We are really going to focus hard on these problem types. The kids will learn new strategies to help them set up the problem and to think about what the big question is.


Science, Science, Science... we are having such a blast learning about balance. This week we reviewed the experiments that we've done so far and we talked about key vocabulary: balance, stable, unstable, counterweights, & gravity/force. I gave the children a question to ponder... I asked them if they thought we could balance a pencil on its tip. Most of the kids looked at me like I was crazy, lol. They explained to me why this would NEVER work and backed up their thinking with evidence from our other experiments and what they've learned so far. We watched an interactive video that shared why balancing a pencil on it's tip was impossible and we even tried doing it on our finger.... but, it didn't work. Nevertheless, I have told the kids that there IS a way to make a pencil balance on its tip. I have challenged them to think about how this could be done. Today they are going to practice trying to make a "fake" pencil balance on its tip and next week, we are going to make an actual pencil do this. I know most of you are scratching your heads trying to figure this out; trust me. It is possible and your child is going to figure it out =). They are going to be so excited to share this experience with you.


For Social Studies we are continuing to work on making good choices and using good work habits to help build our classroom community. We are ensuring that we are being good citizens everyday by meeting classroom expectations and being kind to others!


Conferences begin next week. Please make sure to check your date and time for this. If you are unable to make your scheduled time then please email, message me through Dojo/Remind, or call the school to cancel. I have many conferences scheduled after school so please be mindful and be on time so that our conference schedule can run on time. I am looking forward to meeting with you all.


I hope you guys have a super weekend. Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.


~Ms. Gower

Notes~

  • Flex Seating- Some of the kids have brought in their "flex seating" and it is working out pretty good. The kids are excited about transforming our classroom and with being more comfy as they work and learn. I'd like to have a variety of types of seating for the kids to use and share. The balls have been the most popular so far, but I'd love to have some kids use the stools, rockers, Big Joe Chairs, etc. I am going to try to purchase a couple too, but if you'd like to donate some that would be awesome as well.


  • Fall Party- I am in need of some moms and/or dads to help plan and organize our first class party. It's a tradition in our room to have a Fall Party for the kids before track out. Our past parties have been awesome thanks to some great parents who took the time to plan the best activities and organize this fun event. If you are interested in helping plan our party then please send me an email. I am super excited about this event and the kids will be too!


  • Conferences- I sent home confirmation sheets on Thursday for conferences. Please check your day and time. Try to be prompt for your conferences as they are running back to back and we will need to start and stop on time. I am excited to meet with you and share all the great things I am seeing with your child.

WSES- Embracing the needs of every child!

"In order to succeed, we must first BELIEVE that we can"

~Nikos Kazantzakis