Elementary Math and Science Updates

January 2016

Happy New Year!

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday break! It was great to see a lot of you on January 4 at our first Elementary Mini-Conference. I hope you enjoyed your morning and were able to get lots of great ideas from all of the presenters!

I enjoyed working with those of you who attended my session on Number Sense and Math Stations. I hope you have had the opportunity to implement some of the ideas you got at that session. I look forward to seeing them in action in your classrooms.

Let's roll 'em! (Stations!)

I have ordered and received lots more Dice in Dice and Playing Cards! I'm giving them away to anyone who comes up with some fun station ideas that reinforce concepts that you are teaching/have taught.

Send me your idea(s)...I'm happy to make copies of stations onto card stock for you, and I'll send or bring you some Dice in Dice and/or Playing Cards to use with your station! (I'm looking for meaningful stations that support numerical fluency!)

In addition, as I am visiting classrooms, I'm going to carry some of these items with me! When I see them being used, I am going to offer more! :)

I have quite a few of both, but once they are gone, they're gone! Hurry while supplies last!

TELPAS Writing samples in Math and Science

The TELPAS windows for math and science are:

Math - week of February 15

Science - week of February 22

Your instructional coaches will be discussing some possible writing sample prompts with you during upcoming planning sessions!

Science and Technology Fair

Congratulations on a great job this year with the Science and Technology Fair. The projects that advanced to the District level were awesome! The judging was very close! Way to go!!

I've included some pictures of some of the "favorite" projects that were chosen by our Executive Director of Curriculum, Donna Luther, as well as some of my personal favorites!

Thanks to the Digital Learning Coaches and their Coordinator, Becky Zalesnik, we had a wonderful display of technology and science at our evening open house.

Keep up the great work! I look forward to seeing great projects again next year!


This week we are finishing up with CBA #2 in 3rd and 4th math and 5th science. The other grade levels had their math CBA #2 in December. Please note that question #8 on the 5th grade science CBA has been turned off and will not count. Please make sure students bubble A for #8 BEFORE they actually begin the test. This will prevent them getting off track with all of the other answers on their answer document.

The next round of CBA previews is beginning. Kinder, 1st grade and 2nd grade math will be sent to instructional coaches this week and next. The IC's will conduct teacher previews of these CBA's. Please make sure to review them carefully. This is the perfect opportunity for you to begin with the end in mind!

Upcoming MOCK's

MOCK Schedule:

5th Math - week of February 1

3rd Math - week of March 2

4th Math - week of March 7

5th Science - week of March 7

MOCK tests are not previewed. They are formatted to match the STAAR blueprint and will help us see where our students are about six weeks prior to the STAAR administration. This gives us time to work on concepts where students continue to struggle.

A packet of STAAR-like questions will be given to IC's to share with 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade math teachers. Please use these questions with your students, rewrite them and use them again, and continue using similar questions in your small groups and stations.

Julie M. Smith, M.Ed. - Elementary Curriculum Specialist