EPIC House January Newsletter

Extraordinary Passionate Innovative Community

Happy New Year 2015!

With the new year comes new challenges for our EPIC house students! We are excited to be closing in on the second quarter of school and starting the second semester. Here are some reminders of upcoming events for our students:

  • Winter MAP testing: Wednesday January 14-Thursday January 15 Please be sure your student has a good night's sleep and a solid breakfast for these days. Healthy snacks are also welcome during testing sessions.
  • Monday January 12th: Girls Skills and Drills Basketball starts
  • Saturday January 17th: Orchestra Solo Recital @ Neville Museum
  • January 21: 5th grade movie @ BayPort in afternoon
  • January 22: End of 2nd quarter
  • January 22: 5th grade choir rehearsal @ BayPort 1:30-2:50
  • January 23: NO School

It's a new year which represents a fresh start for many of our students. We continue to work on doing the right thing, being safe, respectful, and responsible each day. This is also a great time to check in with your student if they need any more school supplies. Pencils continue to be on a shortage from day to day.

What's happening in our classrooms?

Science with Mrs. Tennie

In science, we are continuing our study of Microworlds. Students will be taking part in various experiments and learning about lenses and magnification within the coming weeks. This week, students are learned and reviewed PHEOC. PHEOC stands for Problem, Hypothesis(prediction), Experiment, Observation, and Conclusion. During our experiments, students have been using the PHEOC model to organize their thoughts before, during and after the activities. We have also been working hard at using descriptive language and giving lots of details in our observations. We are truly becoming great scientists! In the coming weeks, students will continue to use magnifying glasses and microscope to explore microbes in the world around us!

Social Studies with Mrs. Maroszek

For our colonization unit, students will be participating in a colonization simulation, experiencing some of the trials and tribulations of the first settlers in the early United States. We have learned about early settlements such as Jamestown. Students are working on using credible sources to use their knowledge of geopgraphy forms as well.

Writing with Mrs. Tennie and Mrs. Devine

The first week back to school our students have been practicing their paragraph writing skills. We have reviewed what components are included in a paragraph and applying those skills into our daily writing. I am blown away at the progress we have made this week by reviewing these skills. We will be moving into our informational writing pieces. Students will writing short informational articles on an animal of their choosing, then work with a peer to edit, revise and publish their piece electronically on Google Classroom. We are excited to start this collaborative project!

Language Arts with Mrs. Tennie and Mrs. Devine

We are wrapping up a month long focus on non-fiction text structures: compare/contrast, problem-solution, cause and effect, description, and sequence. Students have practiced identifying these 5 text structures and now are working to determine why the author might choose to use a particular structure. Our final assessment will be Tuesday, January 13th. From here we will be leading into a main idea unit to help focus our informational writing project. We will work to identify two main ideas in a given passage and supporting details.

We have also recently started book clubs. Students are working in flexible guided reading groups to read an instructional level book, set reading goals, and answer comprehension questions. Students meet on a weekly basis to discuss their books together and set the new goal for the week. This has been a highlight for many students and created a friendly competition between first and second hour LA classes on how many books can be read in a month!

First hour Math with Mrs. Maroszek

To start January, first hour math class started chapter 4 which focuses on multiplication of whole numbers and decimals. Concepts we will be working in this unit are: shift patterns when multiplying by zeroes, exponents, different multiplication strategies, single digit and double digit multiplication. Currently, students are reviewing strategies to solve multiplication problems. We are doing two-digit multiplication problems and will begin multiplying with decimals next week.

Second hour Math with Mrs. Maroszek

For students in second hour math class, we are wrapping up chapter 3 which focuses on multiplying and dividing fractions. Prior to break, students worked hard to learn to multiply fractions. It is now a pleasant surprise to students that dividing fractions is VERY similar to multiplying fractions. Students are working on writing and solving division problems using fractions. We will wrap up this chapter before the end of quarter 2 and move forward with multiplication strategies.

A quick reminder about Moby Max: students are expected to complete division Fact Master by January 15. Knowing multiplication and division facts is extremely important as we move forward into multi-digit multiplication and division with whole numbers and decimals.

Bundle up! It's cold outside!

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