Miss McQuillan's Class News

January 16, 2015


During Math this week, we started learning how to solve long division problems. To help the students learn the order of steps to solve the problems I taught them a short saying with hand motions. Have your child show you the saying and hand motions! We will continue to take 5 minute timed multiplication tests on Fridays. Please make sure you child continues to practice their multiplication and division facts at home.


This week during Reading, I introduced a new genre to the students. Our story for the week was a myth. The students learned the elements a myth includes. During independent reading time, each student research their own myth and created an Animoto video to describe the elements of the myth. The Animoto videos are on their tablets, so you can have your child show you what they created!

We also focused on generalizations this week. The students learned that there are two types of generalizations (valid and faulty). We discussed the clue words that author's use to help locate generalizations in text.

Literacy Focus 1/20-1/23

Big Question of the Week ~ How do weather patterns affect our lives?

Reading Focus ~Cause and Effect

Writing Focus~ Formal Letter

Grammar Focus~ Past, Present, and Future Tenses

Vocabulary Focus~ Root Words

Spelling Focus~ Compound Words


The students worked with a partner to build solar cookers. They were able to use shoe boxes, aluminum foil, saran wrap, wax paper, popsicle sticks, mirrors, construction paper and straws to help them build their solar cookers. Before started the design for their solar cookers, we spent time discussing what background knowledge from the other experiments during this unit they could use to help them decide how to design their solar cooker. When the students were finished building, we used heat lamps to roast marshmallows in their solar cooker. Ask your child how their marshmallow cooked in their solar cooker!

Update from Art (Mrs. Davis)

4th Grade Art Room Happenings for 2nd Quarter

Fourth graders were creative in the art room during 2nd quarter. First they learned about the Mexican cultural celebration called Dia de los Muertos. Then they decorated paper sugar skulls with cut and glued paper flowers. Then they got their hands into clay and molded a figure relief inspired by the artist Keith Haring. After that they remembered their warm and cool colors in a painting of three figures also inspired by Keith Haring. They finished up the quarter with different projects related to Op art. Op art is art that tricks the eye by creating an optical illusion. In the middle of this all, they worked on wonderful robot pictures which they all got to happily bring home. Keep working hard in art 4th graders!

Upcoming Dates to Remember

~Turn in field trip permission forms ASAP

~Monday, January 19th - No School- Dr. MLK, Jr. Day

~Thursday, January 22nd- Book Swap

~2nd quarter report cards go home Friday, January 23rd

~Chicago Wolves field trip Tuesday, February 3rd

~Friday, February 13th- No School- Teacher Institute Day

~Monday, February 16th- No School- Presidents’ Day

February PTA Meeting

Since school was cancelled due to the weather, we did not have our January meeting. Join us for our first PTA meeting of 2015!Thursday, February 12th at7pm (at Chesak). Come see how we closed out 2014 and what we can expect for the rest of the school year. We also have some exciting news to share on recent campaigns we have held! See you there...

Attending our meetings is a great way to get involved in your child's education. You also get to meet other parents and staff. Meetings usually only last an hour and you can bring your children with you.

Learn about our meetings...

Don't forget! Last Day of School will be...

The last day of school (if no more snow days are used) will now be on Tuesday, June 2nd. If all 5 snow days are used, the last day will be on Friday, June 5th. Be sure your information is up-to-date in Power Alert to receive school closing information. Complete instructions can be found here. Watch our facebook page for any PTA cancellations.

PBIS T-shirts

PBIS Spirt Wear T-Shirts

Martin PBIS T-Shirts are now on sale until January 30th for students of Martin Elementary. Your child can join their teacher and the rest of the Martin Elementary staff by wearing their T-Shirt on Cool Tool & TAC Days. T-shirts are only $8.00. Order forms came home with your child the week of January 12th. You can also click here for an order form.

3rd Grade T-Shirts will be Red

4th Grade T-Shirts will be Black

5th Grade T-Shirts will be Light Gray

Show your Martin School Spirit by purchasing one today!