Thomas G. Connors Read All About It

4th Marking Period Newsletter

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Principal's Message

Dear Connors Families,

Wow, it's been an unbelievable roller coaster ride of a year. I don't think any of us could have ever predicted the events that unfolded this year. Thank you so much for entrusting us with your most precious gem, your children. I started off this school year outlining 3 priorities that I wanted to focus on as your Principal of Connors; Parent Partnership, Centrality of the Child, and Academic Excellence. I would like to revisit those three areas during remote learning.

Parent Partnerships

Now more than ever after remote learning, we have partnered with parents. Parents have found themselves in the role of a home-educator, doing math and ELA assignments that they haven't seen since they were in grade school. Parents have been juggling many roles including those of a home-educator and child care provider, while working in their own careers. In order to support our Connors families, our teachers were able to call, email and have zoom sessions with our parents and students in order to continue to support each child's growth. Having that open line of communication was key during this remote learning experience. I would love to give a special thank you to our faculty for their dedication and professionalism during this unprecedented time. Even though our faculty found themselves in new unchartered territory, they made sure to always put students first and partner with parents throughout our 13 weeks of remote learning. I would also love to give a special thank you to our parents. You are such a wonderful community and I can't express enough how much your partnership means to me. Please feel free to reach out to me throughout the summer months if you need anything.

Centrality of the Child

During this time of remote learning, there was a wide range of individual student and family circumstances. It is during times like these that the centrality of the child has an even heightened level of importance. Every family had different technology, schedule, health, academic, and social needs during this time period. Therefore, we tried to be as flexible as possible, especially during this unprecedented time and continued to make the centrality of the child a top priority. We were able to modify assignments for individual family circumstances and post recorded zoom sessions for any child that couldn't make the timing of the live sessions. We were also able to provide more individualized support for students who needed it through 1:1 zoom sessions. Your child's individual needs are extremely important to us. Please feel free to reach out should you need anything over the summer.

Academic Excellence

Of course, one of my biggest concerns during remote learning was how to continue academic excellence. I worried as both a parent and principal. I am honestly so proud of Hoboken Public Schools structured remote learning. Students learned new content during their twice daily zoom sessions, one focusing on ELA and the other focusing on Math. Students were able to practice what they learned during the independent practice periods. If students needed assistance, they were able to reach out to their teacher during the independent practice office hours. Students were able to learn new science and social studies content by watching videos and then practicing what they learned through assignments and projects. Students also were able to continue their physical education, mandarin, art, and music classes by watching flexible pre-recorded videos and completing optional assignments, so as not to overburden the parents.

Throughout this time period, I have stressed the importance of reading tremendously. Students who are great readers achieve better in school. During this summer, if there is one academic priority, I am recommending that your kids read every day. If the books are higher level, you can read the books to your children, as higher level books will develop listening comprehension, vocabulary, imagination, and love of books. Lower level books help to build a child's reading confidence and reading expression. You can alternate between reading a page or paragraph with your child as well. Books help teach children about the world around them and develop their concentration, language skills and vocabulary. If your child can read daily over the summer, you will be setting them up for success.

The rest of this newsletter is a window into Connors through remote learning. I hope you enjoy viewing the happy and engaged faces of our students while they are learning. I want to let you and the students know how much I miss seeing you in person everyday. I know we will be back together soon. I hope you have a safe and wonderful summer!

All the best,

Juliana Addi


Dean's Message

Hello T.G. Connors School Community,

It is hard to believe that this school year has come to an end. This year has been unique to say the least. As I reflect on this year I realize all the amazing things we accomplished even though there were obstacles in the way. This year has taught us how to come together as a community and embrace the challenges when they arise. It is my feeling that these challenges have made our community stronger, our families closer, and our students more resilient. Although this time of Remote Learning has been unique, it will always be a moment in our lives that we shared together, and that we will never forget.

I am proud of our families for their continued attention to academic and social emotional learning, as it is the foundation of all our success. I am proud of our amazing teachers who continued to support our students and provide consistent quality education during this unprecedented time. Finally, I am most proud of our students who wake up each morning with a love of learning and have remained motivated, curious learners over these last few months. I look forward to the day in which we are all together again, but until then just remember that we are always stronger together, and you are never alone on this journey.

Have a wonderful and healthy summer!

Mr. Sorafine

A Message from Ms. Wolfsie

Hi Connors School Families,

I hope you are all doing well and staying healthy. It is hard to believe that school is coming to a close for this year. As I reflect on the past few months of remote learning I wanted to say how proud I am of all of the students and families for their hard work and dedication. It is difficult to be at home and out of your normal routine. You have all handled these changes with a lot of courage and strength. During the summer it may be fun to keep a journal of all of the activities that you do with your family. Start a photo book, enjoy nature, go on a scavenger hunt, read books that relate to your interests and continue learning!! I look forward to seeing you all again in the next school year. I hope that your summer includes a lot of fun and relaxation.

I hope to see you around town!

Ms. Wolfsie

A Message from Mr. White

Greeting Connors!!!

Mr White here to wish you all the best summer you can possibly have. I’m sure these past few months have been challenging for all of you in ways that you would never have expected. Your ability to work through these challenges is a great sign of your character. I applaud you all and wish you much rest, peace and happiness! Have a restful and wonderful summer.

Look forward to seeing you all again!

Mr. White

A Message & Video from Mrs. Gaudio

Dear Team Super Readers,

I want you to know how extremely proud I am of you! Your determination and persistence to grow as readers and writers inspired me every single day of this school year. To all of the Connors Koalas, I hope you have a wonderful summer! I can't wait to see everyone again!

Love, Mrs. Gaudio

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The Power of Reading 20 Minutes a Day

The ability to read competently and, more importantly, the enjoyment of reading has great implications for a student’s academic success. Increasingly, new research is showing that the best predictor of future education achievement and life success is reading ability - or, more significantly, being an engaged reader. The engaged reader is purposeful, intrinsically motivated, and socially interactive. Engaged readers who read independently, or who are read to for at least 20 minutes per day will hear 1,800,000 words per year and will have read for 851 hours by the sixth grade!

We are thrilled to share the following incredible resources with you to ensure that your children will have access to a vast library of captivating books over the summer, allowing them to continue to engage in a powerful 20 minutes of reading and keep their brain muscles pumping every day!

Hoboken Public Library: The Hoboken Public Library will offer Read Alouds via Zoom all summer long. Don’t miss this wonderful opportunity to listen to wonderful stories and engage with the Hoboken community!

KidsA-Z: Every student at Connors Elementary School has access to over two thousand beautifully illustrated and engaging ebooks. Reach out to Principal Addi if you have any questions at all about accessing your child’s personalized KidsAZ account.

Epic! Books: Every student at Connors Elementary School also has access to award-winning fiction, non-fiction, STEM, biographies, chapter books, and graphic novels. Read out to Principal Addi if you have any questions at all about accessing your child’s personalized Epic! Books account.

Storyline Online: Storyline Online streams videos featuring celebrated actors reading children’s books alongside creatively produced illustrations.

Audible for Kids: Audible is offering unlimited and free access to hundreds of stories that will help children continue reading, dreaming, and learning all summer long!

Lit2Go: Lit2Go is a free online collection of stories and poems in Mp3 format.

Story Time From Space: Story Time from Space is a project of the Global Space Education Foundation, which sends children’s books to the International Space Station. While in space, astronauts record themselves on video reading these books to the children of Earth and share them on the Story Time from Space website.

HPS Reads: K-12 educators and administrators from our very own Hoboken Public School District read some of their favorite children’s books. What better way to engage in a book than getting to hear it read by your teacher?!

Story Time with the Hoboken Police: Members of the Hoboken Police Department read their favorite children's books to bring joy and big smiles to your home.

Hoboken Public School District Recommended Reading List

Togetherness Tuesday.....I would get a box of tissues for this one!

Kindergarten highlights

Remote Learning has been filled with new experiences like virtual field trips and virtual Field Day for our youngest learners! Students have learned to adapt to using technology that they may not have otherwise gotten the chance to become so familiar with. Students have played math games, done directed drawings, and attentively listened to read alouds - all at their fingertips. They've brought their "Flat Teachers" on countless adventures in their own homes! As this kindergarten class of 2020 moves forward in their education, they will forever have these traits of resiliency and adaptability.
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Virtual Field Day

Wow! Virtual Field Day was so much fun! Kindergarten students worked hard to complete activities and earn points for their teams. They dressed up in oversized clothing, threw paper airplanes, and MORE! This is definitely an experience that they will remember for a lifetime.

Adventures with our flat teachers :)

Kindergarten students were able to "take" Ms. Pinkas, Ms. Schultes, Ms. Rodriguez, and Ms. Fleischer wherever they went! Each student received a "flat teacher" and was able to share their day-to-day adventures with their teachers! The flat teachers played games, helped with assignments, ate delicious food, and even traveled to other states, AND another country!
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Congratulations Kindergarten Class of 2020!

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First Grade Highlights

First grade has done so well with Remote Learning. Their computer skills have widened, and they have gained new experiences along the way. Students have created new inventions from old materials, and kept up with reading and math skills. It is amazing to see the resiliency this first grade class will have moving forward in their school careers, and lives.
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Mrs. Sheridan's Class Unity Bracelets

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Miss Romanowski's End of Year Video

Project planning and design was a major focus of first grade Science during Remote Learning this marking period. Look at these awesome final projects. We may have some future architects on our hands!
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First graders continued to grow and develop as readers. As a class, room 206 read over 500 books on Epic, in addition to the other wonderful books they read at home. We even held extra afternoon zoom sessions for students to practice reading and listening to their classmates. First graders also loved having the opportunity to be guest readers on the school Dojo page!
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First graders learned all about place value, comparing numbers, and 2D and 3D shapes in their last two units of Math. In ELA, students continued to be exposed to a variety of genres of writing. Students also focused on phonics and grammar skills. They worked so hard each and everyday!

Second grade highlights

Second grade took on Remote Learning with strength and determination. Throughout this marking period, they have become entrepreneurs, creating their own businesses right from home! Not to mention their strong proposals for a class pet - we better watch out for the number of animals that will be in the school if these go through! Most importantly, these students will leave this school year with a technological skills and a strong trait of flexibility.
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During Social Studies second graders were asked to create their own business plan. Students were given the opportunity to come up with any business they would like to create. Students thought of what their business will provide, a name for their business, how they will get money for their business to start, and which charity they will give their profits to before creating the business.Some students were able to make their business using items at home. Examples of this are to the right and below.
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Jarely's Science Project

In Math, Ms. Ayers' 2nd grade friends practiced playing the games Capture 5 and Get to 100. Both games work on 2nd grade fluency using two-digit numbers. The students were so eager to play the games and beat Ms. Ayers! From the pictures, you can see that they were successful with both! It was great to be able to see the students apply the same excitement, energy and effort when playing the game that they would in the classroom.
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For Social Studies, Ms. Ayers' friends participated in thematic project-based learning activities. Here we have pictures of students' business creations. We have Siri's Doggy Day Care, Sophia's Cafe and Amy's Art Lessons. Wouldn't you like to support these businesses?

In addition, our 2nd graders also created class pet proposals! Check out two writing pieces explaining why our class should include a rabbit and parrot as a part of our friendship circle! Sounds like solid reasons to me!

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Third grade highlights

Third grade students have sharpened their technological skills, and adapted well to the sudden shift in the school environment. They have continued to strengthen their academic skills and connected with their teachers and classmates via virtual learning. This included online math lessons and discussions of novels they had read. These skills will follow them throughout their lives and continue to help them grow academically.
As shown in the picture below, third grade mathematicians practiced line plots during their Zoom sessions. They were able to virtually compare fish lengths by analyzing the data presented.
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Students in the third grade finished their novel study for the year with Charlotte's Web. The students in 310 read through the text together in reader's theater style. After finishing the novel, the students were treated with a special viewing of the film to compare and contrast the novel to the movie.
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Third grade students at Connors school were excited to read the novel Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White. Throughout the novel, we had the opportunity to read and learn about character traits or parts of personalities that made Charlotte (insect) and the other animals such wonderful friends and special creatures.

The students had a choice to answer reading comprehension questions that related to the main characters and character traits. The second choice was to create/draw a picture of one of the animals from the novel.

The students identified one of their favorite major characters in the novel and then identified the character trait for that insect or animal. Next, the students wrote about the character, the character’s trait, and found text evidence to support their inference or character trait. Lastly, the students created a detailed picture of their favorite character.

Below you will find Yonathan Vazquez’s creative work about his favorite character in Charlotte’s Web.

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A Togetherness Poem by Bria Wong

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Fourth grade highlights

Fourth grade students have learned to adapt to a brand new learning environment. Throughout this marking period, they have finished reading a novel and sharpened their mathematical skills, all while learning remotely! This time spent has given fourth graders the flexibility that will be a positive trait to take with them all of their lives.

End of year slideshow

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Students spent a lot of time reading The Indian in the Cupboard. Discussing, analyzing, and writing about the novel helped to sharpen their comprehension skills and writing abilities. Finishing the novel called for a Zoom celebration!
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Together by Lillian Mcniff

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Fifth grade highlights

Fifth grade adapted so well to Remote Learning, and will bring this adaptability with them into Middle School. Throughout this marking period, they have been able to learn about history and compare it to events of the present day. With graduation upon them, they have written speeches, and even showed their competitive writing spirit by entering those speeches in a classroom contest. The fifth grade class of 2020 will embark upon Middle School with a sense of resiliency and the skills needed to succeed.

Ms. Sogluizzo’s fifth graders just finished reading the novel Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson. This National Book Award and Newbery Honor winner was a President Obama "O" Book Club pick in 2016. Through poems, Woodson shares what it was like to grow up as an African-American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Students had an optional assignment to create a venn diagram to compare and contrast events from the novel to currents events happening today. Please see below for 2 examples.

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For his ELA assignment, Jhosia Sostre wrote a diary entry using first person point of view. He used figurative language to show how the character felt rather than just tell. Jhosia expressed how the main character, Jacqueline, in Brown Girl Dreaming felt when she first moved from Greenville, South Carolina to New York City.

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Ms. Sogluizzo held a contest for the students to determine who would read the closing speech at their 5th grade graduation. Here were a few of the submissions! The final winner who closed out the commencement ceremony was Jaliyah Bates!
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Congratulations 5th Grade!

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Community Support for justice

An important protest occurred in Hoboken this marking period, in which people from all over came to support equality and justice. Below you can see two of our Connors families (K-3) showing their unwavering commitment and support!
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End of the year speech and song from Mr. Azzarto

Learning onomatopoeia in Mandarin Video - Animals speak different languages, too!

A Message from Ms. Peters

3rd, 4th, and 5th grade scientists have been going strong with Remote Learning throughout the end of the school year. In addition to continuing with the curriculum, students created Makerspace projects where they were able to let their creativity and problem solving skills soar. Best wishes for the summer!

A Message From Mrs. Musella

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student of the month

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