Matthews Elementary Newsletter

December 2015

Math is Evolving

We have had many conversations over the years about the way students “do” math at school. Many of us grew up learning about Numbers and Operations, Algebra, Geometry, Measurement and Data Analysis. These are still the 5 main components of our curriculum, but now we are also emphasizing the student’s ability to problem solve, provide proof of reasoning, communicate math knowledge within groups, connect between mathematical ideas, and to use representations to organize and record mathematical information. These concepts are much more difficult than a simple algorithm. Students are being asked to use multiple concepts to find answers. Our Everyday Math program even pushes our student’s immersion into math content knowledge through collaborative activities. We wanted you to be aware that you will often times hear students trying multiple ways to get their answer. Some are more difficult than others. We want students to talk through their thinking. We want them to connect to their previous knowledge base. We want them to have to organize their thoughts to become problem solvers. This is not easy and we understand. However, the modern technology that we are using puts less emphasis in memorizing algorithms. Our emphasis now becomes on how we use the information provided by our technology to solve our problems. Please feel free to utilize our Everyday Math (Ed Connect) page attached to our website when dealing with difficult math concepts. The conversations that you will have with your student will be just as beneficial for them as they will be for you.

There is an online portion to our math resource we use and many 1st - 5th grade students have been utilizing it to support their understanding in math and to practice skills. If your child knows their login information they can login on the provided link. Contact your child's teacher if you need their information.

Upcoming Dates:


12/3 - 4th Grade Music Program 6 PM

12/22 - End of 2nd Quarter - Early Dismissal 1:40 PM

12/23-Jan. 4 - Winter Break (No School)

12/22 - Classroom Winter Party


1/5 - School Resumes

1/11 - PTA Meeting 7 PM Library

1/18 - No School

1/25 - PTA Skate Night 6-8 PM

1/26 - 2 Hour Late Start

Caught You Reading

At Matthews, we want to encourage our students to be readers both IN and OUT of school! To help promote this, we have created a bulletin board in our main hallway that says, "Caught You Reading"! It was filled with pictures of teachers reading, both in and out of school. Now we want to change it to include pictures of our students. If you like your child to participate, snap a picture of them reading and email it to We will print them off and post it on the board for the school to see!
Matthews' Thanksgiving Video

Cocoa with Cops

Wednesday, Jan. 13th 2016 at 2pm

144 Northeast Mcquerry Road

Grain Valley, MO

Outstanding attendance students (99% or better) will enjoy cocoa with our local cops to celebrate their outstanding attendance during 2nd quarter! Students who had outstanding attendance will receive an invitation on Friday, January 8th. Our current building attendance is 91%. We need to be at 90% by the end of the year. Everyday Counts! Attendance Matters at Matthews.