# West Elementary News

## Math Tip

When your youngster explains how he solved a math problem, it helps him to understand the math concepts involved. With these ideas, you can encourage him to talk about how he figured out that 3+9=12...and much more!

Play a simple dice game. Each person rolls two dice, adds the numbers together, and tell show he go the total. For instance, your youngster might say, "I know that 4+5=9 because 4+4=8, and 5 is 1 more than 4, so I have to add 1 more to get to 8." After five rounds, the high score wins. Tip: Boost the challenge by rolling three dice.

Source: Math and Science Connection November 2013

## STEM

We live in a world surrounded by technology. And we know that whatever field our students choose to go into as adults, their ability to succeed will increasingly depend on understanding how technology works. But only a fraction of us are learning how technology works. Only 51% of all high schools teach computer science. That’s why our entire school is joining in on the largest learning event in history: The Hour of Code, during Computer Science Education Week (December 6-12). More than 100 million students worldwide have already tried an Hour of Code. Our Hour of Code is making a statement that West Elementary is ready to teach these foundational 21st-century skills. To continue bringing programming activities to your students, we want to make our Hour of Code event huge. I encourage you to volunteer, reach out to local media, share the news on social media channels and consider hosting additional Hour of Code events in the community.

What is the Hour of Code?

"The Hour of Code is designed to demystify code and show that computer science is not rocket science—anybody can learn the basics," said Hadi Partovi, founder, and CEO of Code.org. "Over 100 million students worldwide have tried an Hour of Code. Hour of Code shows that anybody can learn the basics, and broaden participation in the field of computer science. It has since become a worldwide effort to celebrate computer science, starting with 1-hour coding activities but expanding to all sorts of community efforts.

When is the Hour of Code?

The Hour of Code takes place each year during Computer Science Education Week. The 2021 Computer Science Education Week will be December 6-12, but you can host an Hour of Code all year-round. Computer Science Education Week is held annually in recognition of the birthday of computing pioneer Admiral Grace Murray Hopper (December 9, 1906).

Why computer science?

Every student should have the opportunity to learn computer science. It helps nurture problem-solving skills, logic and creativity. By starting early, students will have a foundation for success in any 21st-century career path.

Conversations about books boost thinking skills, memory and comprehension When your child discusses what she’s reading in detail, it can bolster her memory, critical thinking skills and comprehension. Here are some ways to foster conversations about books:

*Discuss books with your child after she finishes reading them. Ask her what she thought of the characters, plot and ending. Consider reading the book yourself for a more in-depth talk.

• Encourage family discussions. Everyone in your family can read the same book and then gather one evening to share their views. Did anyone have the same favorite part?

• Help your child start a book club with her friends. After they finish reading the same book, your child can host a book club meeting—in person or online—to discuss what they have read.

Source: A. Ketch, “Conversation: The Comprehension Connection,” The Reading Teacher, (Wiley-Blackwell).

## Social Emotional Learning (SEL)

Why is social-awareness important: “the ability to take the perspective of and empathize with others, including those from diverse backgrounds and cultures. [It is] the ability to understand social and ethical norms for behavior and to recognize family, school, and community resources and supports.” (CASEL)

Social awareness helps children cope in new situations and increases their emotional wellbeing. It helps them recognize how their emotions and behavior influence their interactions. They also use empathy to recognize the mood of others and consider different points of view to build positive and diverse relationships.

## PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention System)

Our students of the week were recognized this month for showing empathy and respect towards others. The students recognized each week had "Breakfast with Bjustrom". The donuts were sponsored by Hansen Quality Concrete & Construction LLC all during the month of November.

West students also had a school wide PBIS celebration that focused around social awareness. Classrooms were partnered up and they participated in a "Feed and Read". Students focused on respecting others as they read with a partner and ate popcorn.

## Upcoming Events

Dec. 1- 2 Hr Early Out

Dec. 3- 12pom-1pm PIE Meeting at West Elementary Library (Any parents are welcome!)

Dec. 8- Fundraiser pick up (Please pick up by 6pm)

Dec. 9 K-1 Holiday Concert

Dec. 15- 2 Hr Early Out

Dec. 22- 1 Hr Early Out

Dec. 23-Jan. 4 No School