Fiske Monthly News

February 2018


Welcome to the home of the Fiske monthly news! We feature great news and updates by grade level and specialist teachers to help keep you informed about what our students are learning. Enjoy your reading!
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News from The Principal, Thomas Martellone

Early Release Thank You

As you may already know, getting children to and from school each day can sometimes be a bit of work. Multiply that times 504 students, and it is a big job. Yesterday, we had a half day dismissal due to inclement weather and our focus was making sure that we got students home in a safe and timely manner.

First and foremost, our apologies if you got a few phone calls due to multiple children. We had a number of staff calling from several lists, and we called almost 160 parents/families to make sure we knew what students were doing for dismissal.

At the end of the day, every student made it home safely and not one student was left at Fiske! My most grateful appreciation to all the parents that were able to get their child's dismissal information into our online capture tool, and a huge thanks to our school aides that worked to call families to ensure that everyone knew where they were going.

I'm so pleased that everything went so smoothly, thanks to the efforts of many people, and I'm especially glad that our students got home in a safe manner!

Spaghetti Supper Thank You!

On behalf of our fifth grade students, the parents that volunteered and everyone who helped with the annual Spaghetti Supper last month, THANK YOU!

As always, our students were proud to serve the Fiske Community and we most appreciated you coming to dine with us. It was great to get a chance to visit with families and come together as a school community. The night once again demonstrated the strong support that Fiske Families provide to our school and students.

Thank you for being so involved!

News from the Assistant Principal, Brian Baker

In a world where children are "growing up digital," it's important to help them learn healthy concepts of digital use and citizenship. Here at Fiske School we work diligently with all of our students to make sure they are being the best “digital citizens” that they can be. We also know that you, the parents, play an important role in teaching these skills at home as well, and we thank you! As we all know, media and digital devices are an important part of our world today. The benefits of these devices, if used in moderation and appropriately, can be great. But, research has shown and I think we can all agree, that face-to-face time with family, friends, and teachers, plays an essential and even more important role in promoting children's learning and healthy development. Let’s all make a bargain… Let’s keep the face-to-face up front, and don't allow it to get lost behind a stream of media and other types of technology.

Here are a few tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to help parents manage the digital landscape they're exploring with their children.

  • Treat media as you would any other environment in your child's life. The same parenting guidelines apply in both real and virtual environments. Set limits; kids need and expect them. Know your children's friends, both online and off. Know what platforms, software, and apps your children are using, where they are going on the web, and what they are doing online.

  • Set limits and encourage playtime. Tech use, like all other activities, should have reasonable limits. Unstructured and offline play stimulates creativity. Make unplugged playtime a daily priority, especially for very young children. And—don't forget to join your children in unplugged play whenever you're able.

  • Families who play together, learn together. Family participation is also great for media activities—it encourages social interactions, bonding, and learning. Play a video game with your kids. It's a good way to demonstrate good sportsmanship and gaming etiquette. And, you can introduce and share your own life experiences and perspectives—and guidance—as you play the game.

  • Be a good role model. Teach and model kindness and good manners online. And, because children are great mimics, limit your own media use. In fact, you'll be more available for and connected with your children if you're interacting, hugging and playing with them rather than simply staring at a screen.

  • Know the value of face-to-face communication. Very young children learn best through two-way communication. Engaging in back-and-forth "talk time" is critical for language development. Conversations can be face-to-face or, if necessary, by video chat, with a traveling parent or far-away grandparent. Research has shown that it's that "back-and-forth conversation" that improves language skills—much more so than "passive" listening or one-way interaction with a screen.

  • Create tech-free zones. Keep family mealtimes and other family and social gatherings tech-free. Recharge devices overnight—outside your child's bedroom to help children avoid the temptation to use them when they should be sleeping. These changes encourage more family time, healthier eating habits, and better sleep, all critical for children's wellness.

  • Don't use technology as an emotional pacifier. Media can be very effective in keeping kids calm and quiet, but it should not be the only way they learn to calm down. Children need to be taught how to identify and handle strong emotions, come up with activities to manage boredom, or calm down through breathing, talking about ways to solve the problem, and finding other strategies for channeling emotions.

  • Apps for kids – do your homework. More than 80,000 apps are labeled as educational, but little research has demonstrated their actual quality. Products pitched as "interactive" should require more than "pushing and swiping." Look to organizations like Common Sense Media ( for reviews about age-appropriate apps, games and programs to guide you in making the best choices for your children.

  • It's OK for your teen to be online. Online relationships are part of typical adolescent development. Social media can support teens as they explore and discover more about themselves and their place in the grown-up world. Just be sure your teen is behaving appropriately in both the real and online worlds. Many teens need to be reminded that a platform's privacy settings do not make things actually "private" and that images, thoughts, and behaviors teens share online will instantly become a part of their digital footprint indefinitely. Keep lines of communication open and let them know you're there if they have questions or concerns.

  • Remember: Kids will be kids. Kids will make mistakes using media. Try to handle errors with empathy and turn a mistake into a teachable moment. But some indiscretions, such as sexting, bullying, or posting self-harm images, may be a red flag that hints at trouble ahead. Parents should take a closer look at your child's behaviors and, if needed, enlist supportive professional help, including from your pediatrician.

Kindergarten News, from Mrs. Button, Mrs. Maestri and Mrs. Shanahan

Kindergarteners are eagerly looking forward to the 100th day of school! The 100th day will happen on Thursday February 8th, barring any additional snow days. Our day will be filled with all things “100”; a time to count, arrange groups of numbers and learn the nifty things about the number 100 in fun ways. Kindergarteners are making combinations of numbers with addition and subtraction in a variety of contexts. We continue to work on one more and one less with numbers to 21.

Reading Superpowers are practiced daily during our Reader’s Workshop. Some of the Superpowers the children are using include Picture Power, Sound Power, Pointer Power and Persistence Power. Ask your child what some of the other Reading Superpowers are!

Grade One News, from Mrs. Shew, Mrs. Torpey, and Mrs. Wallace

February is a short month, which means first graders will be extra busy learning! During Writer’s Workshop we will move into Realistic Fiction. Our next unit will focus on writing realistic stories with real life characters, problems and solutions.

During Reading this month we will continue to become “Super Smart” while reading non-fiction books. Children will practice and learn how to read aloud like an expert in many different ways.

First Graders will finish up learning about Balls and Ramps in Science with a variety of different explorations. We have already begun to think about what all balls have in common, what balls make the best bouncers, and what balls make the best rollers. Through the various explorations, discussions and interactions during this unit, first graders will gain an understanding of the material and then will be asked to work in small groups to create a ramp system demonstrating what they have learned. This is always a favorite part of this unit, for students and teachers alike!

Math is all about place value concepts this month. The skills we focus on in Unit 5 will help the children reach the following goals: I know my math facts to 10, I can explain that the equal sign means “the same value as”, whether an equation is true or false, count to 120, and show how many tens and ones are in a number. First graders will learn many games to practice these skills and ways to demonstrate their understanding.

Grade Two News from Mrs. Carter, Mrs. Dinsmore, Mrs. Gobiel, and Mrs. Johnson

February brings the 100th day of school and valentine celebrations before the vacation break. Please continue to send your child to school in weather appropriate outerwear as we will be going out for recess when the temperature (or wind chill) is 18 degrees and above.

Amping Up Reading Power! is the newest theme in Reading Workshop. Reading fluently is key to reading longer, and with greater understanding. Second graders have shown fantastic growth since September and are now tackling longer and harder books. Students are using reading partners to support comprehension and are setting goals for themselves. An additional challenge is interpreting literary language by noting comparisons, invented words, and ways the author conveys special meaning. Students should be reading nightly for a minimum of 20 minutes. We encourage you to talk to your child about their books! :)

In science we will be working on our unit on Changes. Students are writing science lab reports to teach others about what we are learning in daily experiments. Students are expected to remember that informational writing is factual, informative and detailed, and should include specific features. The big idea of the unit is how states of matter and physical properties of an object or substance can be changed. Through experiments, students figure out how to identify objects and materials as solids, liquids, or gases.

Along with writing mini lab reports we will also be continuing writing opinion pieces based on our reading. Students are writing letters to each other about the stories they are reading, encouraging each other to read their suggestions. They support their opinion with reasons and examples using friendly letter format. Eventually, students will be able to write reviews of their favorite things like: food, places, and movies ect. They can be very convincing so be ready to give in LOL!

After completing our current unit on addition and subtraction number stories math will find us exploring Geometry in Unit 6. Students are expected to identify and analyze both two and three dimensional shapes (triangles, quadrilaterals, pentagons, hexagons, and cubes). Using precise vocabulary while sorting shapes by attributes and explaining their reasoning is a key component of the unit. You can support your child by encouraging the use of geometric vocabulary when they share about math at home. Here is list of focus words: angles, faces, quadrilaterals, pentagon, hexagon, cube side, edge, and vertex.

We wish all families a healthy and relaxing, fun filled vacation week! (2/19-2/23)

Grade Three News from Mrs. Aufiero, Mr. Halfond, Mrs. Owen and Ms. Williams

Despite the cold weather and snowy landscape, things are really heating up in the classroom.


Our third grade mathematicians have entered the realm of fractions. Our primary objectives are to help them demonstrate an understanding of:

· Fractions as parts of a whole

· Fractions on a number line

· Equivalent fractions

· Comparing fractions with like numerators or denominators

We have explored these objectives using a multitude of hands-on activities. Students have impressed us with their knowledge and understanding of these tricky concepts.

Readers' Workshop

During Readers' Workshop, third graders have been learning about non-fiction reading strategies. The children are “reading to learn.” We have been examining the various text features that help readers navigate non-fiction texts.

The three types of non-fiction are: informational, biographies and autobiographies. We are currently focusing on biographies. The elements we often learn about in a biography are:

Early Life/Influences; Interests and Hobbies; Challenges; Contributions to Society; and Personality Traits


We continue our focus on the Water and Weather through hands-on experiments and observations to identify the different parts of the cycle: evaporation, condensation, precipitation, and collection. Soon your children will be able to explain the water cycle to you, how it impacts our weather, and the importance of protecting this precious natural resource! The children engage in very interesting discussions, and record all of their scientific discoveries and understandings in their Science Notebooks. We have lots of hands-on fun!

Grade Four News from Ms. Hoffman, Mrs. Jaffe, Ms. Michael, and Mr. Wilde

We recently began an interactive read aloud of Karen Hesse's Letters from Rifka which will serve as our mentor text for both reading and an upcoming unit in writing. Letters from Rifka is set in Russia in 1919 and follows Rifka and her family as they flee Russia on a train bound for Poland with the hopes of emigrating to America. Rifka's family is Jewish, and they are escaping injustice, intolerance, and persecution.

Historical fiction provides so many poignant opportunities to delve into powerful themes, and our analysis and discussions of Letters from Rifka will provide a springboard to our smaller historical books clubs that will bridge and connect our reading unit to our writing unit on the literary essay. Our fourth graders will soon begin their historical fiction/immigration book clubs, and they will be meeting to discuss their books and learn how to make their group discussions more productive and effective. The book selections for our small group book clubs will all have a connection to our social studies unit on immigration, providing the opportunity to revisit previous learning of the immigration experience in a historical context. A major goal of our book clubs will be for our readers to work together to deepen their understanding of this genre and grow more complex ideas about the text.

Extra! Extra! Read all about it! Our fourth grade journalists are learning how to enhance their productivity and increase their focus as writers during this mini-unit. Our writers are learning how to live wide awake lives as journalists and to be tuning into everyday moments to find stories. It’s exciting to see them highly engaged in this unit of writing! During this unit, our writers will learn to write quickly, to revise purposefully and swiftly, and to write from positions of thoughtful observation within their community. Major goals of this unit are for students to write concise, focused reports that tell the who, what, where, when, and why with a sense of drama.

Our fourth grade mathematicians have been introduced to fractions with the implementation of a unit entitled Field Trips and Fundraisers, Contexts for Learning Mathematics. The BIG IDEAS that are being developed during this unit include:

- fractions are relations - the size or amount of the whole matters.

- fractions may represent division with a quotient less than one.

- with unit fractions, the greater the denominator, the smaller the piece is.

- pieces don't have to be congruent to be equivalent.

- for equivalence, the ratio must be kept constant.

Throughout the unit, students used and shared many strategies, such as using landmark or common fractions; using decimal and/or percentage equivalents; using ratio tables as a tool to make equivalent fractions; using multiplication and division to make equivalent fractions; and using a common whole to compare fractions. Mathematical modeling is used as well. In pairs, students worked to solve the problems and shared their strategies by creating posters which clearly explain their thinking and the strategy used. A Math Congress is held to share strategies and discuss the BIG IDEAS. Although this is a challenging unit, the students have enjoyed this learning experience.

In Social Studies, we have begun our study of North America. As part of our exploration students are learning about reading and creating different kinds of maps using an atlas. They are also learning about important landmarks around the USA and what they represent. Lastly, as part of our study of North America, 4th graders are expected to learn their states and capitals of the United States. We have used songs, visuals, and flashcards to motivate them about this unit. Please be sure to help them study at home!

Our fourth grade scientists have shifted from a focus on geology to a new and exciting exploration of robotics engineering! Each class has had (or will have) an intensive experience with this new and highly engaging curriculum. The LexRobotics Program offers a unique opportunity for all grade four students to work with the LEGO, Mindstorms EV3 Kits to “design & debug” both the hardware and software of robotics. The curriculum seeks to provide and foster a dynamic, hands-on environment where students can learn to harness their own creativity, intuition, and potential towards engineering. We hope to emphasize independent thinking, and have students solve challenges and troubleshoot problems rather than complete instructions. Our goal is to engage all students in the engineering/design process through a basic orientation to robotics with the potential to spark future interest and passion in science and engineering. Ask your fourth grader about their experience today!

Grade Five News from Mrs. Belletti, Mrs. Gavrin, Mrs. McMahon and Ms. Springfield


During math this month, we have been learning all about fractions! We reviewed mixed numbers and improper fractions.

One of the new things we are doing with fractions is adding and subtracting with them. We have learned to make a common denominator (see below) to help us add and subtract. We have learned various methods and played games. If we are faced with the problem of ½ - ¼, we will make ½ into 2/4 using the LCM method (see paragraph below). 2/4 - ¼ = ¼. We cannot wait to learn about multiplying and dividing fractions as well.

We worked with making common denominators with the fractions. For example, we were adding fractions so we needed a common denominator. Using two main methods, the Quick common denominator, and the Least common Denominator, we found a denominator that works for both fractions. The quick common denominator consists of us multiplying the two denominators, it’s quick, but can give out very big numbers. The Least common denominator method is finding the LCM of both numbers. LCM stands for least common multiple. You’d write out 3 or 4 multiples of each of the denominators, and find one that works for both of them, this is a nice method because it gives smaller numbers. But, this method takes a bit longer than the quick common denominator method. Overall, we learned that being able to find common denominators is an imperative skill in the world of fractions, and mathematics in general.

We just started a new unit in math called Parks and Playgrounds. When we kicked off this unit Miss Rawding came into help us. We also did some you, y'all and we time. We are working with partners to make math posters based on word problems. We are also trying to find relations with other fractions. Our goal in this unit is to make posters and talk about our thinking. On our posters you should see our visuals and our thinking on paper. Our first poster was a success, we all worked together.


By Christina, Lydia and Sally

During Reading in fifth grade, we have started a new unit: Fantasy! We are joined into book groups, and each group has been assigned a different fantasy book. We are using these books as inspiration for our own fantasy stories, which are in progress and the current happening during Writing.

A big project for only fifth-graders is in full swing now as February starts. It is none other than Book Ads! Every student picks a book, and then does a presentation for the class on that book. Our first presenters will start on February 9, and we hope they will do a great job ‘advertising’ their books!


Fifth graders are writing across the curriculum. They learned to write a literary essay and take what they learned from the text to share the message from the story with evidence to support their thinking. We have begun the favorite writing for many students, fantasy! They love creating fantasy elements and weaving them into narrative stories.

“In writing, we are finishing our literary essays about the story of the Panyee FC (soccer team) and starting our fantasy writing unit. I can not wait to see how make-belive my story will be. I bet their will be trolls and dragons in every setting. It was very fun learning about different types of writing. I am really excited to see how my story is going to turn out. I think a lot of other kids are jumping up and down as well.” ( John- Mrs. Belletti’s class)

Science and Social Studies

We recently completed a Social Studies Unit about the Age of Exploration, impacts of exploration on native populations, the start of globalization, and ending with early exploration and settlement in North America. Students learned that the French, Swedish, English and Dutch all explored and began settlements there, but that the English took over control of all the colonies. We learned some of the reasons why this happened (the English had more experience with self government, and also really valued education and continued to emphasize that in the colonies. The English also had a strong Navy and controlled the ports. We’ll pick up again after our science unit learning more about Native Americans, their beliefs about land and ownership, and their relationships with the English (and other) settlers.

We just started a new science unit about matter and water. We’ve experimented with water and are learning about the ways it can transform. We created mini-lakes in containers with water, sand, pebbles and rocks. We are adding salt to the water next to see what happens. Students have learned how to use scales to measure the weights of all the materials, and a graduated cylinder to measure the volumes. We learned that 1 cc of water weighs 1 gram, and compared the volumes of equal weights of water and sand. Most recently, students figured out how much one drop of water weighs by counting how many drops are in 1 cc of water. Do you know what a drop of water (from one of our droppers) weighs?? If not, ask a 5th grader for the answer -- and an explanation!

Specialist News

Counseling News from Mrs. Pirone

Below are some helpful tips to help your children deal with their worries and concerns about taking tests such as the MCAS. Many students worry about the performance on these tests. They often look to adults for comfort and ideas on how to cope with their worries. Enjoy!

Six Ways to Help Kids Tackle Test Anxiety

By Katie Hurley, LCSW

A first-grade girl was experiencing chronic stomachaches, but her pediatrician couldn’t find anything wrong. Her mother was appropriately baffled. This otherwise happy-go-lucky young girl enjoyed playing outside, building fairy houses, and going on playdates. She liked her teacher and talked about her constantly.

Yet every Monday morning, the stomachaches hit right before it was time to leave for school. Her mother thought that perhaps the transition back from the weekend was the issue. Lots of kids have difficulty on Monday mornings, right?

As her daughter and I began to talk in my office about the “problem with Monday,” the truth came out: Monday was timed test day.

Every Monday morning, she had to take a timed math test, and every Monday morning, she felt a rush of anxiety that prevented her from answering the questions. Months later, just the thought of timed tests caused her to panic — and that triggered the stomachaches.

We think of test anxiety as something that crops up when teenagers take the SAT or some other important exam, but the truth is that even very young children can experience it. With the increase in tests and assessments at the elementary school level, more and more young children are experiencing symptoms of test anxiety.

There are a few steps you can take to help your child tackle this problem before it becomes overwhelming.

  1. Ask questions to clarify. Often, the process of saying their worries out loud helps young children work through their feelings. Understanding the thought patterns that trigger anxiety can help parents develop strategies to target specific concerns.

    Try asking these questions:

    • How do you feel when you first see the test?

    • What’s your biggest worry about taking a test?

    • Do you feel worried when you think about a test or only when you see the test?

  2. Questions like these help us to avoid assumptions about why kids feel anxious. For example, the girl I spoke with was not anxious about her skills — rather, she was afraid of falling behind her peers in the timed-test sticker chart.

  3. Teach test-taking basics. Young children have very little experience taking tests. Kids may feel empowered simply by talking through basic strategies, such as reading the directions, asking questions about the directions, looking for questions they know they can answer right away, and passing over tricky questions for a moment.

  4. Talk to the teacher. Some young children become overwhelmed by things like timed math computation tests and spelling tests because they look at the whole page instead of focusing on one answer at a time. If this is the case for your child, the classroom teacher might be able to implement some simple solutions such as using a piece of paper to cover the majority of the page so that your child only focuses on one line at a time.Other kids experience anxiety when they look around and see everyone working quickly. They become distracted by the noise of the pencils scratching on the papers. A quick fix for this is a privacy shield at the desk or being seated in a separate area at the back of the room.

  5. Encourage positive self-talk. Cognitive reframing is a great way to help young children cope with their anxious thoughts. We can teach kids to “boss back” anxious thoughts by replacing negative thoughts with positive ones. So when their brain signals that something is too hard, they can say, “You don’t worry me! I know how to do this!”

  6. Teach relaxation strategies. Visualization exercises are great for little kids because they tend to have active imaginations. Practice these when your child is calm. Ask him to close his eyes and identify a place he feels happy, confident, and relaxed. Encourage him to share details about the sights, sounds and scents in his calming place. As he shares, cue him to take deep breaths. Then on test day, remind your child to close his eyes and visualize his calming place when he feels anxious.

  7. Bolster confidence. The bottom line is that test anxiety can feel like a confidence killer. Instead of focusing on the actual tests being taken, help your child find their inner strength in other ways. For many children, increasing free play and outdoor play is a confidence booster. In the context of play, kids challenge themselves and work through their fears. This builds confidence that can positively impact your child across all areas of life.

Test anxiety can feel overwhelming for little kids, but if it’s addressed quickly, you’ll find that your child will likely build test confidence over time.

Art News from Mrs. O'Leary and Ms. Walker

Here are just some highlights of the projects we are working on in January and what we are doing until the February break:

Grade K – February, we are celebrating! We will create Kufi hats, from Africa. Chinese “I Love you” window hangings and “lucky” penny envelopes should arrive just in time for Valentine’s Day, to complete the unit.

Grade 1 – In February, children will be studying a “celebrations” unit on China. During Art, we will observe “Chinese New Year”, by creating lanterns, Chinese paper cuts and watercolor fans.

Grade 2 – Look for the figure in motion pieces to come home sometime this month. We will be working on a weaving project based on the African Kente Cloth. Students will view many cloth designs, and will be asked to not only weave a tight checkerboard but to also interweave and apply a variety of other materials as well as use traditional African symbols. This will then be the cover of a book with animal illustrations. These books will be an inspiration from our African clay animal sculptures.

Grade 3 – We be working on a Picasso-like “Three Musicians” print, using pattern blocks. To celebrate, Mardi Gras, “Fat Tuesday” we will be looking and designing a Velegante Mask, native of South America.

Grade 4 - We are combining art and science, with our shadows in the snow. In February, we will be working on projects of Mexican influence.

Grade 5 – Students will look at the work of three African American Artists: Jean-Michel Basquiat, Romare Bearden and Faith Ringgold. All masters of collage and the use of pattern. Students will design a story quilt square done in the collage style. The squares must have themselves in the foreground. The mid and background of the final composition, should

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ELL News from Mrs. Hine and Mrs. Murphy

Upon the completion of ACCESS we reconvened our ELL classes and are happy to have students back in class! In all the grades we launched new units. In Kindergarten we ramped up our unit on living/non-living things to prepare the children for the eggs that will be coming soon to their kindergarten classes . In first grade we started our REACH unit “Growing and Changing” In order to continue complimenting the curriculum in the classroom, we will discuss characteristics of living things, and explore animal adaptations. In the second grade we started a unit in REACH called “Staying Alive” and began our discussion of the essential question: What does it take to survive? In each of these REACH units the students are exposed to critical academic vocabulary and oral language that they will be using in their classroom. Ms. Hine’s second graders will continue to work on their writing to support the work in their classrooms. The third grade students are starting a “Mystery of Matter” unit which will support concepts being taught in the classroom. In fourth grade students finished their readings and vocabulary journals about immigration and will begin writing their own stories as well as studying geography to support upcoming units in the classroom.. Our fifth grade ELLs will be starting digital personal narratives after reading books from the same genre.

PE News from Mr. Spiller and Ms. Murphy

All grades recently completed their gymnastics unit. The next two units will be basketball and hockey skills. Skills will be practiced and then reinforced playing lead-up games. As always, sportsmanship, fair play, best effort and fun will be emphasized!

Music News from Mr. Hart and Mrs. London

Greetings from the Music Room….

The Fiske Music Performance Calendar is set. You are invited to any and all of these celebrations:

Fourth Grade Performance:

Thursday, April 26, 2018 at 11:30 in the Fiske Gym.

Third Grade Recorder Performance:

Thursday, May 24, 2018 at 11:30 in the gym.

Fifth Grade Chorus/Band/Strings Concert:

Wednesday, May 30, 2018 at 9am and 7pm.

Meanwhile, these are things you might see or hear if you walked by the music room at Fiske:

Kindergarten: Dancing with scarves and playing Who Stole the Cookie…?

1st Grade: Acting out Drummer Hoff and playing instruments with She’ll Be Comin’ ‘Round the Mountain.

2nd Grade: Moving to Ritsch Ratsch and Dancing to Alabama Gal

3rd Grade: Recorder!!! Please go to the Fiske Music Website ( We have started Old Roger is Dead...

4th Grade: Starting our concert songs and dance (The Willow Tree)

5th Grade: Moving in 5, and creating moves for Chick Chick Chatterman

Library News from Mrs. Kishpaugh

Kindergarten began a study of author and illustrator Jan Brett. Did you know Jan Brett has an amazing website? Go to to download activity pages, play games, watch videos about drawing, and so much more! It has lots of creative, fun ideas for those cold, snowy days.

First Grade enjoyed the folk tales Rumpelstiltskin (German), Lon Po Po (Chinese), and The Empty Pot (Chinese).

Second Grade has been reading and comparing folk tales about the West African trickster spider Anansi. We enjoyed Anansi and the Moss-Covered Rock, Anansi and the Talking Melon, and the Caldecott medal winning A Story, A Story.

Third Grade has been reading about numbers and money with Zero the Hero, Money Madness, and One Proud Penny.

Fourth Grade began a unit on regions of the United States by sharing My America: A Poetry Atlas of the United States.

Fifth Grade has been considering the question of Windows and Mirrors in the Fiske Library. To find out more about Windows and Mirrors, watch Grace Lin’s TED Talk: and visit Mrs. Kishpaugh’s web site Window and Mirrors in the Fiske Library:

All Grades: For book lists, Flipster, and other helpful links, visit the Fiske Library Catalog Home Page:

Math News from Mrs. Rawding

Across the building students are working on forming permanent brain pathways as they embrace challenge, make connections, learn with their classmates, make mistakes as synapses fire in their brain & have fun!

Check out the movie trailer for the grade2 challenge:

Follow me on Twitter to see and learn more about Math at Fiske @FiskeMath

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Literacy News from Mrs. Azeredo, Ms. Jones and Mrs. Kelley

Health Office News from Mrs. O'Connell

Dear Parents,

Flu is an active concern for school. We can all do a lot to help reduce the transmission of illness at school by reducing the number of sick children sent to school. Please keep your child home if your child has had any of the following:

*Fever of 100F (37.8C) in the past 24 hours

*A fever accompanied by any one of the following: cough, runny nose or sore throat (flu like symptoms)

*Your child has needed Tylenol or Ibuprofen to control fever for the past 24 hours

*Strep throat , if awaiting culture results of less than 24 hours of antibiotic treatment *Vomiting or diarrhea in the past 24 hours

*An undiagnosed rash accompanied by an elevated temperature

Tips for managing a sick child at home:

*If your child has a fever with any one of the following; cough, runny nose or sore throat (flu like symptoms), please keep your child home until no fever (off Tylenol/Ibuprofen) for 24 hours

*Use a thermometer to accurately measure body temperature, (not the back of your hand)

*For people who are awake during the day and asleep at night, the body temperature is lowest upon waking an gradually increases throughout the day (not usually over 100F) a good time to check for fever when ill is 4-5PM

*Children do not usually wake with a headache, if your child wakes with a headache, a fever may be present, please check temperature

*Avoid sending your child to school after administering a dose of Tylenol or Ibuprofen “to get through the day”. Children are poor learners when they are ill

*Wash hands before eating and after using toilet

*Do not share food, eating utensils or drinks with family members that are sick

*If you are not able to stay at home with your sick child, please have a backup plan ready to avoid sending a sick child to school

Head lice seems to “creep up on us” throughout the year. It’s good practice to “take a peek once a week”. This information is being shared with you so that you can become more knowledgeable about head lice.

Head lice (pediculosis) is a common problem unrelated to personal hygiene. Your cooperation in periodically examining your child’s hair as a precaution is essential.

· Use a bright light to examine your child’s hair

· Work in small areas, part the hair with a comb and look for eggs attached to the hair near the scalp

· Adult lice are about the size of a pinhead and will move quickly

· The eggs (nits) look similar to dandruff but will adhere to the hair. They may be gray or tan in color

· Excessive scratching may be a symptom

· It is recommended “Take a peek once a week” throughout the school year!

Lexington Public Schools does not have a “no nit” policy.

Please don’t hesitate to call with any questions 781-541-5007.

Claire O’Connell RN