West Rockhill Report
Grade Level Reports
Kindergarten is welcoming spring! This month we are reading a few more stories as we talk about the Changes All Around Us. We are focusing on new letters and new words with each story. Our next reading unit will focus on Going Exploring. You will start to really see your child take off with their reading and writing. The word lists sent home with each story will really help build their reading skills. I am seeing their reading logs filled with many books read at home! It is wonderful to see how many children are reading nightly! Thank you parents! In math we will introduce the value of the penny, nickel and dime, learning how to make exchanges, fun graphs and solid shapes. We will play many fun games to reinforce our new math concepts.
First grade will be working on some exciting new concepts in the month of April. In math, we will start a geometry unit in which students explore attributes, polygons and 3D shapes. In reading, we will finish up Unit 3 and answer our theme question: what is changing in our world? First graders will read a play that discusses what animals do when the seasons change. As we switch over to social studies, first graders will discuss celebrations and traditions that are important to them. Nightly reading with retelling, counting coins including the quarter and telling time to the quarter hour are some great ways to practice skills at home. Please don't forget to check our weekly fridge facts for specific spelling words, sight words and weekly concepts.
Second graders have been doing an excellent job learning cursive! Throughout the month of April they will be learning the uppercase cursive alphabet. Parents, keep your eye out for optional practice pages coming home! In science, the children will explore our new unit on plants. They will learn many things about seeds, plant parts and plant growth. Be sure to ask your child to tell you what they know about these living things! In our upcoming math lessons, we will practice measuring, decimals and place value. One way to utilize these skills at home would be to have your child cook with you!
Third graders are ready to take on PSSAs! We’ve been learning and practicing strategies to help us feel confident and show what we know. In math, we have started to learn about fractions: naming parts of a set, comparing fractions, and finding equivalent fractions. In reading, we are learning about how people and nature are connected while we practice and learning our comprehension skills and strategies. Many third graders participated in our school-wide PRIDE Celebration at the PAWS Movie Theatre! What a great way to celebrate our PRIDE behavior!
Fourth grade is wrapping up unit 3 in Reading. This unit has been all about looking for patterns in nature - the weather, the seasons, day and night, clouds, and finally, landforms with Paul Bunyan and other tall tales. In math, we continue to relate fractions, decimals, and percents to each other and their many uses. We have also been studying area and perimeter and the formulas to calculate them. As we wrap up our Physical Science unit on magnets and electricity, we will transition back into Social Studies about our country and Pennsylvania. Look for information about field trips coming home soon!
Fifth grade has been learning about how inventors can inspire us to create a better world. Through these lessons we have been finding ways to analyze stories we read and improve our writing in preparation for this month's PSSA testing. In science, we have explored the world of a meteorologist and now have a 30-40% chance of guessing tomorrow's weather correctly. Our social studies lessons have taken us back to Valley Forge, as we fight a war of independence against Mother England. Math has given use time to discuss our Dear Aunt Sally and her embarrassing way to remember the order of operations. We look forward to rocking the PSSA's!
From the Office
Are you interested in volunteering at West Rockhill? All volunteers are required to have three clearances. Please visit the links below for more information on how you can obtain each of these necessary clearances:
- State Police Background (cost: $10)
- Child Abuse History Clearance (cost: $10)
- FBI Fingerprint (cost: $28.75)
NOTE: Applicant must select fingerprint processed through PDE.
Registration receipt will be required to have fingerprints processed.
The PTO is run by parents with the goal of enhancing each child’s educational experience while at West Rockhill. We coordinate many events and work closely with the teachers to help them meet their needs. Here is just a sample of all the PTO does:
- Field trips
- iPads for the classrooms
- ELMO (document scanners) for each classroom
- Amplification systems for each classroom
- Signs and cones for the new drop-off set-up
- Family nights
- School store
- Mountain Lion Festival
- T-Shirts for students every other year
- Coordinate volunteers in the cafeteria
- And more!!
There are so many things that would not be possible in our school without the PTO! We hold one fundraiser each year – Race for Education, where students earn per lap or flat donations for the number of laps they can complete around the front circle in one hour. This year marks the 10th anniversary of Race for Education at West Rockhill. Planning and organizing for this year’s Race is already underway and we are confident this will be our best year yet!
PTO meetings are held the second Monday of each month at 7:00pm in the library. These meetings are open to all parents. We welcome your ideas, suggestions, and comments. You can also follow us on Facebook at: WRE PTO for all the latest information. If you would like to help enhance your child’s experience here at West Rockhill, please consider volunteering with the PTO. Hope to see you at our next meeting!
From the desk of Mrs. Vogt, Instructional Support Teacher
The Department of Education states, “For children to be successful in school, parents must be actively engaged in their children’s learning.” Check out their article, Strong Start, Bright Future http://www2.ed.gov/parents/academic/help/strong-start/strong-start.pdf to see their helpful hints on how you can be more involved.
Tips on how to tackle challenges and make the most out of learning opportunities:
There’s a simple way to encourage your child to learn and use more advanced vocabulary in his/her writing. First, make up a list of easy words that your child typically uses over and over in his/her writing. You can start with just a few words and add to the list as more over-used words are noticed. Our students have words such as big, fun, good, like, said, and went on their lists. We tell the students that these worn-out words are “off-limits” and must be replaced with more descriptive vocabulary in their writing assignments. Resources, such as a thesaurus, are a great way to generate word banks of better alternatives. If you don’t have a thesaurus, you can even find one online. Using words such as towering, amusing, splendid, cherish, exclaimed, and escaped instead of the worn-out list will begin to enhance the style in any student’s writing.
Below are three things students have witnessed at West Rockhill in the past month.
6 Little Things That Make a BIG Difference
Many parents provide their kids with the big essentials:
- Unconditional love
But there are also small things parents can do to make a major difference in their kids’ lives:
- Keep an eye on the big picture. It happens to all of us. We become so preoccupied with the moment-to-moment aspects of child- rearing that we lose perspective.
- Savor the moment. Between work, chores and our kids’ activities, life can become so hectic that you find yourself racing from one thin to the next. The result: little room for spontaneity. And that’s too bad because being spontaneous drive home the point of flexibility better than anything else. Your willingness to modify your schedule to do something fun will teach your child the art of reranking priorities, validate his/her ideas and demonstrate how important it is to spend special moments together.
- Read stories aloud. Most kids, no matter what their age, enjoy the intimacy of having their parents’ direct attention.
- 4. Apologize. A sincere apology when you have “blown it” will not only convey respect for your child, it shows that you value him/her. It will also help him/her to learn compassion and that no one is perfect. She’ll/he’ll be more likely to admit her/his own shortcomings if she/he can expect you to forgive her/him.
- Spend focused time with each child. This can be special time in the way of an enjoyable activity AND may also be as simple as having individual bedtimes so it allows for “talk time”. Taking different children on different errands can count too.
- Put it in writing. Written expressions of love are tangible and can be saved. Children of all ages delight in reading your words, whether it is an annual birthday letter or a short note of encouragement tucked into their backpack or lunchbox.
-from Parenting- Judy Schuster School Counselor
Happy Greetings from the Cafeteria!
Have you ever heard “you are what you eat”? It means that if we eat healthy food, we will be healthy and if we eat unhealthy food, we will be unhealthy.
Does your child know what “healthy” food is? Healthy food is what gives your body the necessary nutrients it needs to have energy throughout day. It will also support the continued growth your child's body is going through.
So, what are they? Are they a healthy eater, who choices fruits, vegetables, lean meats, foods high in protein and low in fat and sugars? Are they eating whole grain breads and crackers –how about cheeses and yogurt? Do they drink water and milk more often than sugary drinks? If they are giving their body these foods, they are a healthy eater!
Do you want to learn more about all the wonderful healthy food there is to eat? Visit www.choosemyplate.gov for games, recipes and great advice on keeping yourself and your child the healthiest you each can be.
If you and your child complete a puzzle together, tell them to bring it down it to the Cafeteria for a special prize!
Have fun exploring the wonderful world of delicious healthy food we are fortunate to choose from!