Sparks' Notes

05-02-16

Wanted: Auction Items for Our Auction on May 6th (Anything a fourth grader would like is great!)

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What We Are Learning This Week

Great Expectation Life Principle: Empathy

Math: Math Review Stations (Check out our latest 3-Act Task)

Science: Adaptations Project

Social Studies: Early 1900s

Writing: Short Stories

Reading: Mixed Genres

Language: Sentence combining, revision, and editing


Agenda Link


Don't forget your books for library on Tuesday.

Please be sure to check the Parent Portal for grades regularly.

I staple a weekly grade report to your child's agenda with any missing work listed on the back. I know that you see this as you initial the agenda each evening. This helps your child understand and be in control of his/her own success, as turning in work is the greatest obstacle.


To set up an account, you simply need your student's ID, which is his or her lunch number. Just ask him or her to share this if you haven't already set up an account. As a parent, it is a hugely valuable tool!

Parent Portal Link for Checking Student Grades

To set up your account, enter your email address as your username. If you don't' remember your password, click the link. If at any time you are prompted for your student's ID number, just ask her/him to tell you her/his lunch number.

Morning Tutorials Are Open - 7:10-7:40 am

We offer daily reading and math computerized tutorials that begin at 7:10 and go until 7:40. Students who have shown up on time and have come with fidelity (every day) have made significant gains.


In our class, students who attend will receive a healthy snack when they bring their attendance ticket to me.

Important!!! Be Sure to Join Us On:

Edmodo - Our Communication System & Protected Learning System


  1. Go to www.edmodo.com.

  2. Have your student sign in. (Username and password are inside front agenda cover.)

  3. Scroll down the left side of the page until you see Parent Code. Write this code down.

  4. Logout (upper right corner, click on “Me” and select Logout).

  5. Go to www.edmodo.com and select “I’m a Parent” (under blue box that reads “I’m a Teacher”).

  6. Enter your student’s code and set up your account.

  7. Click here to see what features you see as a parent.

  8. Make sure to go Account (upper right corner, click on “Me”) and select "Settings". You can select to have email or text alerts for specific items.


On our Edmodo site, you can see:

  1. Daily agenda (planner/calendar)

  2. Homework links (Folder->Classroom Information)

  3. Student progress

  4. Assignments

  5. Subject area links

  6. Classroom pictures

Chromebook Care

  1. Determine a fixed spot to plug in your Chromebook EVERY night so that it is charged and ready to go the next day. We have found that this step is crucial to keeping your Chromebook working properly. Keep your charger in your laptop bag when not charging.
  2. Please be sure to keep case free and clean. Stickers and moisture can damage devices.
  3. Make sure you bring your Chromebook every day in the computer bag/sleeve. This is an essential school supply, not an extra.
  4. Monitor your child's computer usage in a common area.
  5. If students are not taking care of their computer responsibly, computers will stay at school. If you would prefer that it stays at school, please just let me know.

Parent Homework

Please do the following with your child:

  1. Check and sign agenda nightly.

  2. Check that reading homework and log are completed nightly.

  3. Check that math homework and log are completed nightly.

  4. Look through Tuesday folder and sign and return the next day (keep the work).

Homework - Expect a Baggie Nightly

Homework Expectations: 1. Read a minimum of 20 minutes nightly and complete reading log. 2. NEW CHANGE - Each night students will complete a worksheet, SHOWING ALL WORK. 3. Practice vocabulary words. Test on Friday.

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This Week's Vocabulary Words

Each child will be tested on Friday. Students are expected to be able to use these words in sentences. These are words we use day-to-day, so a functional use is critical to learning and understanding.


  1. parallelogram - a four-sided figure with exactly two pairs of parallel lines
  2. protractor - instrument for measuring and drawing angles
  3. angle symbol - a shape, similar to an triangle lacking the side, that means angle
  4. expanded notation - way of expressing each place value of a number
  5. interval - distance or time between
  6. trapezoid - four-sided figure with only one pair parallel sides
  7. confection - something prepared, especially a sweet baked good
  8. automatically - instinctively or involuntarily
  9. concoction - a mixture of several ingredients
  10. delectable - delicious and mouthwatering
  11. consistency - degree of thickness of a substance
  12. inventive - imaginative or innovative
  13. preheat - to warm up before using
  14. revolutions - cycles of movement around a central axis
  15. tines - prongs or sharp points
  16. Civil Rights Act - legislation in the United States that outlawed discrimination
  17. aerospace - the earth's atmosphere or the area beyond it
  18. time zones - a range of longitudes where a common standard time is used
  19. segregation - keeping apart one or some from a group
  20. empathy - identification with the feelings of others


You can practice these words on Edmodo using the Vocabulary Spelling City app.

(Click on the 2x2 array of on the far right. When the apps window opens, select Vocabulary Spelling City, and go to Vocabulary Week 33 in the yellow section. There are lots of games to help you learn your words!)

Dates to Remember

Week of May 2nd

Teacher Appreciation Week


Tuesday, May 3rd

Percussion Ensemble Performance - 6:00 pm


Monday, May 9th

Fourth Grade S.T.A.A.R. Math Test - Get a good night's sleep & eat a healthy breakfast.


Tuesday, May 10th

Fourth Grade S.T.A.A.R. Reading Test - Get a good night's sleep & eat a healthy breakfast.


Tuesday, May 17th

Math Reward Day for those that have earned their Golden Gumball.

Chavez musical, "Lion King" - 7:00 pm


Friday, May 20th

Reading Counts Field Trip for those that have met their Reading Counts goal.


Monday, May 23rd

3-5th Grade Field Day


Wednesday, May 25th

Fourth Grade Field Trip to Retractable Technologies Incorporated in Little Elm


Thursday, May 26th

Special Olympics


Friday, May 27th

No School (Didn't have to use Bad Weather Make-Up Day)


Tuesday, May 31st

Rocket Day (Viewing the 5th Grade Launches)


Wednesday, June 1st

Awards Assembly at 8:00 am


Thursday, June 2nd

Last Day of School - Early Release at 11:20