Monday, May 10, 2010

CST Day 1

Today was our first day of our California Standards (CST) testing. I think it went pretty well, though I studiously avoid looking over their shoulders as they are doing their work. It took up most of our time until recess. After recess we corrected the history test, and most of you have already received an email with those results. After lunch, we worked on math and did physical education.

Homework is lighter during testing week, but we need to have some to get through math.

Homework:  (1) Do “Graphing,” pages 426-428 in the math book. Also do “Mixed Problem Solving” on page 429. Be sure to do the graphing as indicated. This will be on a separate sheet of paper. (2) Do the final draft of the tree house writing assignment. Students who did their rough drafts had these returned and graded; alas, not all students did the rough drafts and these students will have to do the final drafts without benefit of a corrected rough draft. This needs to be in cursive and quite neat.

Monday, May 03, 2010


First of all, let me say that I feel appreciated! Today was the first day of Teacher Appreciation Week and the students sent me a nice card along with a lovely plant.

We started off, as usual, with our Independent Reading. This is going really well now and it is a delight to read their journals each week. We then did what’s called “frontloading” in education-talk. Frontloading is giving the students an assignment which will help them to relate better to something that they are going to read or study later. In this case, I front loaded a selection the students will read tomorrow from Pearl S. Buck’s The Big Wave. This is a tale of a tsunami which destroyed a small town in Japan and a young boy’s entire family. I had the students write an email to a friend whose family was killed in a massive earthquake in Northern California. The did a really good job with this.

After recess, we began reviewing Chapter 8 of the history book in preparation for a test either tomorrow or Wednesday. We continued this for a bit after lunch while I got ready for physical education. In PE, I began working with the students on underhanded pitching. In math, we are skipping a couple chapters so that we can go over equations and formulae before testing next week.

We also corrected our Topic 15 math test and the double-digit division quiz. The scores are on the gradebook. These results were a bit disappointing, and the students will have another chance at Topic 15 in a week or so. They should use the Practice and Reteach pages in the workbook to review this before the next math test.

Homework:  (1) Do Concept card based on one of the stories read so far. Many students completed this in class this morning. (2) Do spelling sentences for words 1-10. (3) Do Word Knowledge and Vocabulary from Context for “The Big Wave.” (4) Do the review questions for chapter 8 in the history book. (5) Do “Equations and Formulas” on pages 418-419 in the math book. (6) Do the Algebra and Fractions review worksheets. Again, this is to help the students get ready for testing next week.

I hope that many of you had a chance to see the California Dance Institute show on Friday. Our room 19 students were fantastic. Unfortunately, I neglected to bring my camera (which never does very well without flash in the auditorium anyhow) so I do not have any picture to post of this. Should anybody have so good pictures of the performance, please email them to me so we can share some visuals.