Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Tweet Life

Although by Seattle standards, I am sure this would count as a sunny day, we were on rainy day schedule here at Third Street. Not every teacher’s favorite, I’m sure you know…. But we made the best of it and tried to have some fun, anyhow.

We started by having the students list in their journals the things they were NOT thankful for. This proved to be a surprisingly hard thing for some of the nicer kids. For those with souls like their teacher’s, it was not only easy but fun to make such a list. And yes, homework appeared on every one!

Another way we made the best of our rainy schedule was to have the students write their summaries of Dear Mrs. LaRue as tweets. Here are some samples from Ike’s twitter feed.



Did not listen to Mrs. LaRue. Ripped her ratty coat. Ate her chicken pie. #did_not_listen


Mrs. LaRue sent me to obedience school. Not good, It’s like a prison. Writing to Mrs. L. #obedience_school_is_prison


Trying to run away. Really worried about Mrs. LaRue. Miss her. #running_away

Very creative! Next they want to do Facebook pages for characters. Where will it all lead? O tempus, O mores! (and oh what smart kids!).

The students finished their food webs today. They are really quite good. Here’s a particularly nice one.


By noon, blue sky was showing through the clouds but we were still on rainy day schedule. Grrr! So I took the students out for a little “physical education” after lunch. They needed to burn off some energy!


Tomorrow, in addition to the usual Friday quizzes and activities, the students will have a history test. The social studies homework tonight is not only good preparation, but they can use these notes on the test. All the information and skills they need to get a perfect score on the test are on these sheets!

Homework:  (1) Write spelling words 16-20 ten times each in cursive and write a sentence for each word. (2) Do the spelling word search. (3) Do “Future Tense,” page 153 and “Punctuation,” page 154 in the Practice book. (4) Do Adding Mixed Numbers 4. (5) Do Portola’s Expedition/Tallow Candles. (5) Do the history review pages.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Mrs. LaRue

It was a dark and stormy day. OK, it wasn’t stormy, but it sure was gloomy, wasn’t it? Fortunately, things were pretty sunny inside room 19.

The students started the day with their journals, and then I gave them a lot of time to try to get finished with their mosaics. Most of them are done, and they sure are great!


We read one of my favorite stories today in the book, Mark Teague’s Dear Mrs. LaRue.

dear mrs larue

It’s a great story about a dog who is sent to obedience school. Is the Igor Brotweiler Canine Academy really the prison Ike describes … or is it more like a spa? The pictures are just a fabulous as the text.

We looked at the radius and diameter in math. In Science, we worked on creating food webs. We’ll finish these tomorrow.


Homework:  (1) Write spelling words 11-15 ten times each and write a sentence for each one. (2) Do the spelling crossword. (3) Do the Think and Compare questions on page 319 of the Treasures book. Copy the questions. The summary is NOT assigned today. (4) Do pages 149 and 152 in the Practice book. (5) Do the Adding Fractions 3 practice paper. (6) Do “Circles,” pages 204-205 in the math book.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Eaters and Eaten

We started the day in Tech Center. The Prezis are mostly finished, and I’ve never been prouder of anything the students have ever done in Tech Center. We spent a while going over and discussing the homework. We look at the various kinds of quadrilaterals in math. In Science, we explored food chains and food webs using some picture cards supplied with the Foss program. Students had to math the eater and the eaten to learn about the flow of energy through an ecosystem.


And we finished the day with our reading buddies.


Homework:  (1) Write spelling words 6-10 ten times plus a sentence for each word. (2) Do the spelling jumble. (3) Do pages 145 and 148 in the Practice book. (4) Do Adding Mixed Numbers 2. (5) Do Quadrilaterals pages 202-203 in the math book.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Back to Normal

Well, after a good week of conferences, the schedule at school gets back to normal – well, for a week. I think all of us are looking forward to that Thanksgiving Week break.

We started the day, as usual with journals. The students explored telling the last Treasures story from the point of view of the librarian. Point of view is an important part of this week’s story, Mark Teague’s “Dear Mrs. LaRue.”

We went to music as we usually do on Mondays. Today, in a kind of culmination, we met in the auditorium. The students had a chance to really polish a couple of the pieces they had been working on during the semester with Ms. Moran.


The students also had a culmination of sorts with Mr. Pratt. He stopped by and after some review, tested them on some of the concepts and vocabulary that have been so important during our theater class. The students generally did quite well. The results are posted on the grade book.

We read about the missions in social studies. In math we worked on classifying triangles.

Homework:  (1) Write spelling words 1-5 ten times each in cursive. Write an original sentence for each word. (2) Make a table or chart sorting the spelling words by the silent letter patterns. (3) Do “Silent Letters,” page 143, and “Vocabulary,” page 144, in the Practice book. (4) Do the Life at the Missions” study sheet. Be sure to answer in complete sentences! (5 ) Do Adding Mixed Numbers 1. Either show your work on the paper or attach scratch paper. (6) Do “Triangles,” pages 200-201 in the math textbook.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Washing Up

We started off the day with journal as usual. I was searching around for a topic when I remembered an incident from my undergraduate days when I had to explain to a clueless rich girl how to wash dishes. So I turned that into our topic for the day. The students not only gave the directions flawlessly, but are mastering the art of sarcasm as well.

A couple more students finished their turkeys. These are going to be excellent!


We started work on the District math assessment, and we looked at lines, rays, and angles in math.

Homework:  (1) Do the final draft of the dog or cat opinion piece. This MUST be in cursive. (2) Do pages 196-197 in the math book. (3) Do Subtracting Fractions 3 practice sheet. (4) Do “Reading a Time Line.”

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Spaniards, Turkeys, and Perpendicular Lines

We had a very productive day today. We started out with a simple story starter sentence. For some odd reason, many of the responses were about Santa and Christmas. You can tell what the students are already thinking about! When they finished, they worked a little more on their mosaic turkeys. One student is already done.

We then went on to correct last night’s math and to finish the final paragraph of the district language arts assessment. After that, I gave a short presentation to the students providing them with an overview of the Spanish settlement of California. Inspired by the great work the students had done in Tech Center, I also used Prezi.

We started our unit on geometry today. This is usually a pretty easy unit for the students.

Homework:   (1) Do the Settling Alta California questions. (2) Do the Subtracting Fractions 2 practice sheet. (3) Do pages 194-195 in the math book.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Curses, Foiled Again!

Four short days in one short week. Things are going to go by quickly! Today certainly did. We started out in Tech Center today. Most of the students are finished or almost finished with their Prezis. Mr. Riko will be posting some links soon so you can see how fantastic these all are.

After that, students worked on both their Thanksgiving mosaics and I worked with small groups during this time on their melodramas. I wanted them to be just about perfect for Mr. Pratt. And they were!

The stories were the classic melodrama about the wicked banker who is about to foreclose on the hapless old people – actually, a surprisingly modern tale, when you come to think about it. There is a young maiden, of course,


a handsome hero, and


a dastardly villain with a snickering sidekick,


And the hero saves the day, foils the villain’s evil plans, and marries the beautiful young heroine.

These kinds of plays not only illustrate the basic elements of story, but they were the kind of entertainment that nineteenth-century Californians loved to watch. So, it’s a little bit of history, too.

Homework:  Do the Subtracting Fractions 1 worksheet.

Thursday, November 07, 2013

Another Quick Post

Just the homework for now….

Homework:  (1) Write spelling words 16-20 ten times each in cursive and write a sentence for each word. (2) Do the word search. (3) Write a half page summary of “When I Went to the Library” and answer the questions on page 285. Be sure to write at least two or three sentences for each question. (4) Do pages 140, 141, and 142 in the Practice book. (5) Do the Adding Fractions 4 practice sheet.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

November Nostalgia

Fall brings just a touch of color to Third Street School, enough to give wisp of nostalgia to displaced easterners. The colorful trees are a beautiful sight, but a sad reminder in the East that the bitter winter is coming.


But we had no time for tristesse in room 19 today. We were quite busy and productive. We began with our journals. Our topic today was, “If you wanted to scare somebody – but not hurt them – who would it be? What would you do?” As you can imagine, we had some great stories. This was an example of what teachers call “frontloading” because it helped get them ready to read our main Treasures story of the week, “When I Went to the Library,” a humorous tale of a student who send an ophidiophobic librarian to the hospital. We started work on our district writing assessment. We completed our short unit on adding and subtracting fractions. We started work on a Thanksgiving themed art project. More on that later!

Homework:  (1) Write spelling words 11-15 ten times each in cursive and write a sentence for each word. (2) Do the spelling crossword. (3) Do pages 133, 136, and 137 in the Practice book. (4) Do the Adding Fractions 3 practice sheet. (5) Do “Problem Solving,” pages 261-262 and “Test Prep,” pages 264-265 in the math book.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Three Headed Monsters Here!

Our day began in the Tech Center. Most of the students are either finished or nearly finished with their Prezis about Native Californians. Ask them to show it off to you! Mr. Riko is quite impressed with what they have done and will be putting it on the Computerwise Kids website in the future.


Theater class was our other big event of the day. Mr. Pratt, as usual, helped the students to master the language of theater arts.

Mr Pratt

The students did a number of theater games and activities today including one of my favorites, the three-headed monster. In this game, the monster is asked questions and each head can only say one word at a time. It really makes the students listen to each other!


The students also rehearsed their melodramas.


Homework:  (1) Write spelling words 6-10 ten times each in cursive and write a sentence for each one. (2) Do the spelling jumble. (3) Do the “Early Explorers” and “Routes” activity paper. (4) Do Adding Fractions 2 (even numbers only). (5) Do “Subtracting Fractions,” pages 258-259 in the math book (odd numbers only).