Weekly Newsletter

November 4, 2021

News from Principal Emma Liebowitz

We had a wonderful time getting some exercise at the Sugar Rush 5K last week. We raised almost $1,400 to be put toward the Gaga Pit and shirts! Thank you to the Ashfield and Plainfield Police and Fire Departments for helping keep us safe along the route! On November 23, we will be doing a Turkey Trot!

Events/Calendar:

Thursday, November 4 - 12:30 Dismissal for Caregiver-Teacher Conferences

Friday, November 5 - 12:30 Dismissal for Caregiver-Teacher Conferences

Monday, November 8 - Local Education Council meeting at 3:15

Tuesday, November 9 - Parent-Teacher Organization meeting at 7:00 PM

Thursday, November 11 - No School

Saturday, November 13 - Local Goods Distribution Day

Wednesday, November 17 - 1:50 Dismissal

Tuesday, November 23 - Turkey Trot

Wednesday, November 24 - 12:30 Dismissal

Thursday, November 25 and Friday, November 26 - No School



Link to Sanderson Academy calendar.

Health Office News from Nurse Loranna

Please see below for informaiton about vacination clinics.

Preschool News from Mrs. Freeman

Preschoolers were excited to start the week sharing their experiences about trick-or treating and their Halloween. The stories were interesting and preschoolers started to talk about the amounts of candy they collected. Someone mentioned having a hundred pieces of candy. Another topped it by saying they had a thousand pieces of candy. And one mentioned a million pieces of candy! It’s exciting to hear a beginning understanding of large quantities. To continue the start of this interest, this week we are counting, comparing amounts, and having fun with numerals.

Preschool News from Ms. Melanie

We’ve had a busy time in preschool this past week. Firefighter Mike came to visit with us to tell us about fire safety. We learned how to do a “low crawl” to keep out of smoke and he even had some pre-k sized fire gear to try on! Just before he left, he told us that he had heard some “dogs” barking near his gear bag--and then surprised us with little stuffed “Sparky” dogs for each of us to take home--what a treat!

We had fun taking part in the Sugar Rush--running a big loop all around the soccer field, to the baseball field, and up the hill to the blacktop--a great way to start our morning. Later that same day, we dressed in our Halloween costumes and joined the rest of the school in a Halloween parade, followed by sharing some yummy applesauce that we had made earlier in the day--what a festive time!

Kindergarten News from Ms. Sarah

In math, we introduced a new tool: the number rack! It has 5 red beads and 5 white beads that we can move to show ways of making 10 (such as 3 and 7). Kids made their own number racks using pipe cleaners and we will use them for upcoming games. An example of one game is a call-and-response game where they see a 10-frame and then adjust their number rack to show that 10-frame.

First Grade News from Mrs. Wyckoff

What a fun-filled week it has been in first grade! First graders had a wonderful time running in the Sugar Rush run around the Sanderson campus. Many first graders stopped to cheer on kindergarten friends and encourage them to “keep going” Their spirits were high, smiles were wide and excitement was flowing through the roof! Later in the day we were thrilled to put on festive costumes to join in our all school Halloween costume parade. We then ended our day with our class party where we enjoyed our delicious right-out-of-the-oven crumb topping apple pie with ice cream and sprinkles! To end our week, first graders tried out some word searches which were new to so many! It was wonderful to see kids working together, identifying the different sounds letters make, talking about words and cheering one another on when someone found a word. Our days in first grade are full of laughter, lots of fun and pure joy!

Second Grade News from Ms. Robertson

As October came to a close last week, our class enjoyed taking part in the 5K Sugar Rush. It was wonderful to see the students’ perseverance as they challenged themselves to complete the 5K and to hear the positive encouragement as the runners and the walkers passed by the checkpoints and each other! We had a fun afternoon as we joined the traditional costume parade and saw all the creative costumes that were worn. It was an exciting day enjoyed by all!


This week finds us turning our attention to the beginning of November, and the start of a new month means new Number Corner math activities. November’s Number Corner will find us looking at patterns in the different time pieces on the calendar and expanding our knowledge of telling time, focusing on telling time to 15-minute intervals, such as 1:00, 1:15, 1:30, and 1:45. Measuring will be another focus, where we will measure the length or the width of classroom objects using nonstandard units, such as popsicle sticks and unifix cubes. This week we are also beginning a new module in our Bridges math program, where we will be exploring different addition and subtraction strategies and applying our knowledge of these strategies to story problems. One activity we have been doing to apply our knowledge of the Make 10 facts* is “Pockets”. We count up the number of pockets our clothing has and share the number and an equation such as 5 + 4 + 3 + 2 + 5 + 6 + 7 is created. We then look for ways to “Make 10”, such as 5+5, 4+6, and 7+3. When we have found all the ways to make 10, we rewrite the equation as 10+10+10+2 and then quickly count by 10s and 1s to find the answer. (*Make 10 facts are pairs of numbers that equal 10. Being able to instantly recognize pairs that make 10, such as 2+8=10, helps when adding 20+80=100 or 42+8=50.)

We have also started a social studies unit on maps. We have been working with a map of the world, focusing on learning the seven continents and the four oceans. We have also discussed that some world maps show a fifth ocean, named the Southern Ocean, which comprises the ocean waters that surround Antarctica.

Third Grade News from Ms. Carole

Third Graders did an amazing job putting their whole hearts into the Sugar Rush last week. It was amazing to see them working their bodies that hard with smiles on their faces. They greeted the rest of the students who finished after them with sincere joy and happiness as well.

On Friday we turned one of the pumpkins we had harvested from our garden into pumpkin cookies. They were a new experience for nearly everyone, and they were a big hit! I was recently giggling over a “national shortage of canned pumpkin,” since nearly every home around has a pumpkin sitting on the porch these days. I’m glad these third graders, at least, know of a better source of pureed pumpkin than a can!

In Language Arts this week we dove into figurative language by learning about idioms. Third graders are at an age when they can comfortably depart from the literal and begin to get creatively expressive. Learning about idioms is always fun, so we are making an idiom book. Each child has chosen an idiom to write and draw about, and we will put them all together for our own class book of idioms.

Fourth Grade News From Mrs. Lagoy

We have finished reading about the land and water of the Northeast Region. Students got to see how they will use the 2-column notes they have taken throughout our reading to complete their scrapbooks. While students have been reading, they have been capturing main ideas and supporting details using 2-column notes (main ideas on the left with supporting details bulleted on the right). Now they are using those notes to write summary paragraphs. They were delighted to learn that they would be able to write their summaries using their Chromebooks. When their typing is done, Mrs. Upright and I will be able to print them out and students will draw a picture to go with their writing. In language arts, we have started new chapter books. Be sure to ask your kiddo which book they are reading. That’s right, we aren’t all reading the same book for this unit. I launched the epic fantasy genre and fourth graders typically read The Castle in the Attic. While I was introducing some of the elements that are unique to the epic fantasy genre, I was giving students examples from different fantasies that I have read to illustrate my point. One of the groups got so interested in one of the example books that there was a coup in fourth grade, because of their well constructed argument, those students will be reading Poppy. Lastly, we have been working on address skills during our grammar lessons this week. Please make sure your kiddo knows how to write their address.

Sixth Grade News from Mrs. Schreiber

As a fun activity last week and this week, the sixth grade has explored point of view and protagonists and antagonists. Students wrote a short story from the protagonists point of view and then we shared stories with a classmate who then had to write the story again but from the point of view of the antagonists. This is similar to the story of the “Three Little Pigs” and the “The True Story of the Little Pigs” told from the wolf’s perspective.

News from Ms. Prew

Math Practice Time! Math Practice 1: Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them. This practice is all about the who and the what. Who is this math problem about? What is happening in this math story? Then, it becomes grit! To show grit one must keep trying, even when things seem tough. Math Practice 2: Reason abstractly and quantitatively. This math practice means that mathematicians can use words and numbers to help make sense of problems. For example, if a mathematician sees 27 + 34, the problem might feel overwhelming at first. However, using math practice 2, a mathematician's work might be something like this: "Well I notice that 27 and 34 are both pretty close to 30. I know that 3+3 is 6, so 30+30 is 60. That means my answer should be about 60. If I combine the tens, 20 +30, I get 50. I'm not sure what 7+4 is, but I know 7+3 is 10 so 7+4 is just one more, 11. Then I can break up the 11 into 10 and 1. So 50+10 is 60, and 60+1 is 61, so that is my answer!"

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Art News from Ms. Hawthorne

This week starts the Original Works fundraiser. This program prints student art on various keepsakes and gift items such as magnets, mugs, mouse pads, notecards, tote bags, etc. We have timed this fundraiser so that gift items will be delivered for the winter holidays. Students have completed artwork that will be sent home with the catalog and order form starting on Friday November 5th. Order forms MUST be returned WITH THE ARTWORK by Monday, November 15th. There is one order form per artwork and multiple item orders for the same student should be on the same order form. To learn more about this program, please visit their website at originalworks.com/parents. You can substitute other artwork if you wish however it MUST meet the requirements listed on their website and it has to be labeled in pencil on the back with a T indicating the top, and student name, grade, and school. All student artwork will be returned after printing. If you do not wish to place an order, please keep and celebrate your student’s artwork.

Speach-Language News from Trish Aurigemma

People have asked me how I can work as a Speech-Language Therapist while wearing a mask. I have told those who have asked that it is more time consuming to communicate my message, but not impossible. Here is a list of tips that I use when speaking with a mask on.


Tips for Communicating While Wearing a Mask or Physical Distancing from ASHA.org.

  1. Make sure you have your communication partner's attention.

  2. Face your partner directly, and make sure nothing is blocking your view.

  3. Talk a little louder.

  4. Talk a little slower.

  5. Reduce background noise when possible.

  6. Communicate with gestures. Use your hands and your body language.

  7. Teacher’s and other public speakers can use voice amplification devises when speaking to a large group of people.

  8. Repeat your message when your partner can’t hear everything you say.

I find that I’m a better communicator when following these steps because I need to slow my thoughts and words down. In doing so, my message is not rushed and it is more thought out for my communication partner. Perhaps you may find these tips helpful for you when you are communicating with people in your community.

Message from the District Literacy Team

Literacy Strategic Plan

Educators of the Mohawk Trail - Hawlemont Regional School System are excited to embark on a new path towards a comprehensive, research-based literacy program for our districts. Reading specialists, classroom teachers, special educators, and administrators from all buildings and grade-bands are participating in teams to implement our first strategic plan for literacy. The goal is to align literacy teaching and learning in our schools using an assessment and data management system, professional development on the science of reading, and the adoption of a new literacy curriculum in grades kindergarten through 8th grade. Our team will be seeking family input and involvement, and we look forward to partnering with our communities on literacy-related events and workshops. Our shared goal is to better prepare our students for life-long learning and engaged citizenship.


Caregivers of students in grades PreK - 8th: The Literacy Leadership Team Family Engagement Subcommittee has created a quick survey that asks about the information you receive about your student's literacy learning. Please, follow the link below, and take a few minutes to give us your thoughts.

Literacy Communication Survey

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