Weekly Newsletter

May 6, 2021

From Principal Emma Liebowitz - MCAS Update

MCAS is a snapshot of your child's performance on a given day. We rely on our school-based assessments and observations to assess ongoing growth. This year, schools will not receive an accountability status. In the past, attendance played a role in the accountability status a school received. For the 2020-2021 academic year, schools will not be penalized for students that do not take the test. Please contact me if you have questions about your child's participation.


May 11 - Fourth Grade English Language Arts

May 17 - Fifth Grade Science

May 18 - Fifth Grade English Language Arts

May 19 - Fifth Grade Math

May 20 - Third Grade English Language Arts

May 21 - Sixth Grade English Language Arts

May 25 - Sixth Grade Math

May 27 - Fourth Grade Math

May 28 - Third Grade Math

Teacher Appreciation Week

Although we do not have an active Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) at this time, past members put together gift bags for the Sanderson Academy staff for Teacher Appreciation Week. Flowers and a gift card was also delivered to Denise Sessions, our school secretary, for Administrative Assistants' Day.

Health Office News from Nurse Loranna

May is National Mental Health Awareness month so I thought I would highlight that this week for our newsletter. This year has certainly been challenging with many stressors out of our control; feelings of isolation, worries of illness and unpredictable schedules have made coping more difficult than ever. Yet, this year has also shown the true value of community and caring for ourselves and others and that small acts of kindness can go a long way. Data shows that 1 in 5 children have an un-diagnosed mental health issue and that 2/3 of those children do not get treatment. If you have concerns about your child, it is important to reach out for support. Check out this great resource for tips and information: https://mhanational.org/recognizing-mental-health-problems-children. This is a good time to re-think the way we address mental health challenges and help to decrease stigma and shame that often prevents proper treatment. There are many ways to help support mental health. Here at Sanderson we have an amazing mindfulness program, mindfulness is a powerful tool that students can carry with them throughout their lives and can help create lasting profound positive changes. Getting outdoors is also a proven way to increase feelings of well-being, as well as benefit physical health. Another silver lining of this pandemic, the recognition and value of getting outdoors in our beautiful area we live in!

Preschool News from Mrs. Freeman

Thank you Ms. Stacey for thinking of us and giving us a really cool box! A plain and ordinary box can be so much more. To help us think of ways to use our box, we read, Not A Box, by Antoinette Portis. In this story, a little rabbit shows us that a box can be anything, if you use your imagination. After listening to the story we created a list of our ideas. We thought our box could be a rocket ship, a pool, a door, a farm, a house, a hot air balloon, and a castle. We cut a door into the box and taped up the sides to create a roof. Currently, preschoolers are pretending it’s a house and dog's house. I wonder what it will be next week?

Kindergarten News from Ms. Sarah

This week we reintroduced writer's workshop by reviewing the parts of workshop (minilesson, independent write, and sharing) and our goals in kindergarten for writing (think of our own ideas and show them on paper). We also reviewed the progression that kids go through in kindergarten--from labeling an illustration with beginning sounds to writing beginning sound sentences to sounding out full words in sentences--and talked about how kids will be in different places with the progression, just like we are in different places with how many teeth we have lost and how tall we are. Next we will be trying out writing poetry to make into a class book!

First Grade News from Mrs. Pedersen

First grade has enjoyed making mother's day projects this week. The children are eagerly waiting to share them! We had a lot of fun on Monday dressing up as a movie character. First grade earned this special day. Everyday Mrs. Taylor picks a "mystery luncher" and if that child follows all the cafeteria routines and rules we earn a point. Once they reach 7 points we have a fun surprise. Mondays surprise also included bubbles and a Walt Disney movie.

In math we are focused on place value to 120.

Second Grade News from Ms. Robertson

We welcomed the month of May with the saying “April showers bring May flowers.” and shared what spring flowers we have observed growing or hope to see growing. We extended our sharing of flowers to our math work with fractions, too, by looking at different kinds of flowers and writing the fractions for the different colors in a set. For example, if we have a set of 7 roses and 3 are red, 2 are blue, 1 is yellow, and 1 is white, we can write that 3/7 of the roses are red and 2/7 of the roses are blue.

This week we also continued to work with the vacation news we wrote last week, with the focus being on editing. The editing process was modeled for the class, then we read our piece of writing over to ourselves. The first step was to check that our writing was clear and that it made sense. The next step was to read it again, listening for pauses in our reading. At these pauses, we checked that we had correctly placed our end punctuation. Our third area of focus was on capitalization. Did we begin our sentences with capital letters? We also checked that the word “I” and that the names of peoples and places were capitalized. Our final task was to underline words we needed to check for spelling and then to look up these words in a simple dictionary.

The last two Fridays have found us visiting the woods for an extended time of observation. We divided into two groups, with one group visiting the woods out by the salt shed and another group visiting the pond in the far woods one week and vice versa the next week. When we visited the woods out by the salt shed, we found a spot and found two things in nature to observe up close, such as white birch bark, a pine cone, or a fiddlehead fern. After making our observations, we drew an up-close picture of what we saw and recorded its color, size, how it felt, and an observation of our choice. When we visited the pond out in the far woods, we did the same activity, but our focus was on the pond itself, making observations about the things we observed in individual tubs of water that were drew from the pond.

Vocabulary Challenge: If your second grader did the Vacation Vocabulary Challenge that was sent home by Mrs. Schreiber, please see the link below where feedback can be offered. Thank you!

Third Grade News from Mrs. Wyckoff

This week in language arts third graders were introduced to a new biography about Albert Einstein titled On A Beam Of Light by Jennifer Berne. Just before reading we were introduced to this quote by Albert Einstein: “ The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.” Third graders took a moment to think about what this quote means to them. Some students shared the following ideas: “Never stop questioning or being curious”, “Never stop learning”, “asking questions helps you get the answer” and “asking questions and learning helps your brain grow!” After listening to the read aloud we had great discussions surrounding getting answers. We often ask a question and get an answer right away, but there are many times there isn’t an instant answer, such as in science which leads us to remember to keep asking questions, never give up and of course always stay curious!

Thanks to Mrs. Morey and the eagerness from third graders related to running, we have started our own walking/running club here in third grade! Each day during recess and body breaks children have the option to walk, jog or run down on the soccer field. They’ve been keeping track on a mile tracker card where every filled out card equals 3 miles! It’s great to see third graders setting goals for themselves, achieve them and then continue to create some more!

Fourth Grade News from Mrs. Lagoy

This week we began a new math unit. We are studying line plots and started by reviewing elapsed time. Over the next couple of weeks you can help by talking about "start times" and "end times" with your kiddo and ask them to figure out the elapsed time.

During geography, students are learning about several landmarks in the West Region. Be sure to ask your child where they would like to visit and ask them to explain why.

We finally finished all of our prereading activities for Glory Be and started reading the story. We are focusing on learning about the characters, setting and problem as we work through the first quadrant.

If your child came home on Tuesday and said, "We sanded rocks today," here is what we were up to. We have been studying weathering and erosion and were modeling how wind weathers rocks and erosion moves pieces of rock (sediment). Take a look below!

Fifth Grade News from Ms. Johnson

Fifth grade has been working on constructing and using an outdoor classroom. Students have been exploring, creating, and working together. They have been creating the space and using it to do classwork. We have also recorded our Civil War radio program to report on events of the Civil War. We did a science lab were about energy in the food web. Students were exploring what organisms use energy for and the idea of conservation of energy- the law that energy can't be created or destroyed, it just changes form. This week's Wednesday Weekly Activity was about Rube Goldberg machines. All week we watched videos of Rube Goldberg machines and then students created some in the classroom.

Sixth Grade News from Mrs. Schreiber

Thank you to everyone who participated in the April Vacation Challenge. I will be sending home a questionnaire about your child's experience soon. I am so glad we were able to share these games and activities to play over vacation and beyond.

In sixth grade, we have been wrapping up our cell unit making cell models and cell analogies this week. I love watching the creativity come through in the student's projects. We have also been working on a community service project in the soccer field, spreading wood chips around the structures that were installed.

Vacation Vocabulary Challenge

Thank you to everyone who participated! We had a great participation rate and many prizes that were earned. If your student participated in any of the activities, the prizes will be sent home on Friday. It would also be very helpful if you would take a few moments to answer some questions in a questionnaire. The link to the questionnaire will also be sent home with the student prizes as well as a link to the Wakelet where the activities and directions can be found if you would like to use them with vocabulary words in the future. Thank you for your help and support.

Library News from Mrs. Shippee

Library Classes are in full swing for each class! Once a week the Book Mobile (aka Book Cart) comes to each classroom with quite a large assortment of books specially picked for the students in that particular class. The sign-out sheet comes along with this delivery and the books are checked out and back in weekly. The books are recorded in the students' individual account history so that in the process of looking back it is easy to make selections for each student based on their interests. Students and Teachers alike seem to enjoy this method of doing things this simple way. Ms. Liebowitz has given the Library a sound amplifier which makes weekly read-aloud fun. A "Book of the Week" is read to the classes with questions, comments, and reflections on the book afterwards. There is certainly an upside to this. When a question such as, "What did you notice about this page?" is asked, it is both entertaining and interesting to hear what students at varying ages levels remark about the same text and pictures. It is fun to share the common and not so common viewpoints brought forth by students. This leads the way to perspective and viewpoint type of conversations! Books are still lots of fun, but it's the children's discussions that are sparked by the books that is the most fun!

The Reading Room with Mrs. Morey

Hello families!

Some children have been working very hard in the reading room on several components of literacy. We work on phonics skills, sight words, reading strategies, fluency and comprehension. We practice these skills in context using leveled books. If your child comes home with a book from school, please make time to hear them read to you. Chances are they have been practicing just for you! Many teachers (including myself) have students record their reading in a log that requires an adult signature. You will be so proud to hear what they are doing!

Thank you,

Katy Morey

Reading Specialist

Mindful Movement with Ms. Sue

Well the weather sure has been rainy!! We do need the water, but it has put a soggy stop to Mindful Movement outside…so we switched it up and did some Chair Yoga this week…

This is especially helpful when we have to sit for longer than desired minutes or for when we have to take a test and we want to shake out the worry and get the blood flowing to our brains for learning and testing. Boat pose, Rock the baby, Pigeon and Sitting Rag Doll are just a few. We also reviewed some breaths: count down to calm, power breath, ocean breath. Along with Washing machine and Posture Prep for helping to release tension, open up our shoulders and twist our spine gently. All helpful for students and adults alike. Enjoy!

Sanderson's 3 M's (Moment, Movement, Mantra)

This month we are talking about Perseverance: persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.

The Moment of our 3M’s is Square Breathing.

And our is Mantra: I can and I will

Principal Emma has been talking about GRIT this week in our morning announcements, which ties in nicely with this theme.

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Mohawk Trail District News - Summer Programming Survey

Dear Mohawk Trail Families,

We're excited to share that this summer the Mohawk Trail Regional School District will provide educational and enrichment summer camp programs for grades K-2, 3-6, and middle school students! Additionally, high school students will have the opportunity to take courses at a local college or work as camp counselors within our summer programs.

We are currently seeking community partners (local organizations) to provide new and local educational experiences for all age groups on both our Mohawk Trail Regional School (MTRS) campus or at surrounding locations. The summer programs will be housed at MTRS; however these community partnerships will provide us with opportunities for student field trips and exploration of the communities around us.

**We need your input to provide the best programming we can for all of our students in the district!** Please take a moment to complete this brief survey to share your summer programming needs and interests. I look forward to hearing from you! If you have questions; need additional information; or would like to connect as a community partner, please be in touch!

LINK TO SURVEY: https://forms.gle/cFTpifzgQgVWXbreA

Alia Woofenden

MTRSD Summer Program Coordinator