Sunday, 24 March 2019

Week 27: March 25--29 - Spirit Week!

There is a lot going on this week! It's Spirit Week at St. Clare, to raise money for our Lenten Initiative, Arise and Shine Uganda. Bring a donation, or send one through cash online and participate in the following events:

Monday: Colour Day

Tuesday: Book Character Day

Wednesday: City Vs. Country

Thursday: Past Vs. Future

Friday: Board Game Day

Don't forget - this week is also Luv 2 Groove week! Grade 4 will be going on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday; Grade 5 will be going on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Students should wear comfortable clothes and make sure they have indoor running shoes!

Sunday, 17 March 2019

Week 26: March 18-22 - Welcome Back from March Break!

I hope everyone had a relaxing and enjoyable March Break! The weather was up and down, but some days were great for outdoor activities. 

Here's what is coming up this week:

On Thursday, Fr. Tavis and other priests from our Parish will be here for Lenten Reconciliation. They will hear individual confessions of students who have already received their First Reconciliation. Here is a copy of the Children's Examination of Conscience, for you to go over with your child in preparation for the sacrament if you wish. It also has a reminder of what to say during the Sacrament of Reconciliation and an Act of Contrition, for reference.

Math:  We will be starting a short unit on Algebra in both grades. As we have done several algebra activities during our math warm-ups over the year, this unit should be relatively easy for students. The Mash Up Math website has many free puzzles that take only a minute or two to practice algebra, and are fun to do. Bedtime math also has many fun activities to do together.

Language: As we wrapped up both read-alouds before the break, we will take the opportunity to complete another CASI. We will review what makes a good summary, what "main idea" means, and character traits before writing.

Don't forget - the week of March 25-29 is Spirit Week at St. Clare! There are many activities planned to raise money for pit latrines for our Lenten Initiative, Arise and Shine Uganda. 

Sunday, 24 February 2019

Week 24, Feb. 25-Mar 1, 2019

Winter Walk Day / iWalk Day was a great success! A nice morning for a walk (despite the on-and-off drizzle), and delicious hot chocolate afterwards! We were joined by Phyz from the Ottawa Health Dept, some representatives from Active Transportation, and various community members. Thanks to everyone who walked to school, or did the Drive to 5, we appreciate your support!

Here's what we have been up to, academically:
Math - in both grades, we are linking division with multiplication. Students really need to know their math facts - whether they memorize their multiplication tables or use strategies such as doubles, doubles plus one group, skip counting, etc. (read: multiplication tables). When students can find their facts quickly rather than looking it up on a chart, they can perform multiplication and division calculations so much more quickly and accurately. Keep on trying!

Language Arts - The Gr. 4 have just started listening to and making predictions about a read-aloud named To the Top of Everest. This non-fiction book, written by Laurie Skreslet, is his story of being the first Canadian to summit Everest, and the struggles he overcame to do so. The students are enjoying it so far, and making very interesting predictions. The Gr. 5 are almost finished their read-aloud, Kensuke's Kingdom, and have written a "message in a bottle" to their parents, just like the main character Michael did to his. At the end of the book, they will have to decide whether this book is fiction or non-fiction.

Image result for to the top of everest laurie skresletImage result for kensuke's kingdom

Monday, 18 February 2019

Week 23: February 18-22, Happy Family Day!

I hope everyone is enjoying their long weekend, and spending Family Day doing something with their family! The weather this weekend has been a little cold, but great so far! 

Last week was a very short one, academically! 
-Monday was Faith Buddy Day, so both grades spent a block with their Kindergarten Faith Buddies talking about Kindness, Love and helping others. We then made a "Quilt block" for our kindness quilt, which we hung in the hallway by the Kindergarten pod. I posted a picture on Twitter.
-Tuesday we squeezed in some math! We worked on division (both grades), Religion (Gr. 4) and then did Zumba with Paco! So much fun!
-Wednesday, the school was closed due to heavy snow.
-Thursday, the Gr. 4 were on a field trip to the Museum of Science and Technology, and the Gr. 5 spent the morning working in the morning class, then watched a movie in the afternoon. We returned in time to exchange Valentines and hand out report cards.
-Friday was a PD Day

-Monday is Family Day

Next week, things should return to normal. 

Our Winter Walk Day is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 21. Walk, wheel or snowshoe to school on Thursday, and join the school for a morning walk. Active school transportation supports healthy brain development, reduces stress, anxiety and depression, and improves cardiovascular health as well! Join us for Winter Walk Day and make active school travel a part of your day. After our walk, we will enjoy a cup of hot chocolate in the school yard. If you do not want your child to have hot chocolate, please let me know through the blog, or a note. We have ensured it is peanut/nut free (Carnation), and we have also purchased milk-free (Nesquick) for those with milk allergies.

Sunday, 10 February 2019

Week 22: February 11-15, 2019

We had a great time at Junglesport! Each day got better and better, with more challenges added each time we visited. There was truly something for everyone, and they all came away tired after each session.

This week will also be a busy one! We have a number of events this week:

Monday is Faith Buddy Day. We will be teaming up with our Kinder partners to participate in activities that promote the Gospel Value of Love. We will watch a short video, read a book, then make a Kindness and Love Quilt (paper) with our Faith Buddies.

Also on Monday, we will be participant observers in the Grade 6 Saint Walk. Each Grade 6 student has researched the life of a Saint, and will take on the persona (in costume, even!) of that Saint in the gym on Monday afternoon. The students in our class will choose a Saint to sit in front of, listen to their story, and ask a question or 2, then move on to another. It is a very interesting activity.

On Tuesday, we have Zumba with Paco! From 2:40-3:30, the junior students will participate in this high-energy dance and exercise fun! Children are encouraged to wear loose, comfortable clothing and make sure they have running shoes!

On Wednesday, the girls are supposed to have their Handball Tournament. However, we are expecting a really big snowstorm, so if it is a snowday, that will be cancelled. Miss Rhodes will also finish the bio poems she started with the Gr. 4 last week.

On Thursday, we have our Field Trip to the Museum of Science and Technology. Again, if it is a snowday, the trip will be cancelled. However, we are really hoping it isn't! Thank you to all of the parents who acquired the Police Check and are able to volunteer with us on the trip. We wouldn't be able to go without your help! We are really looking forward to a fun day! It is pizza day, but please pack a lunch for your child. Pizza will be waiting for your child when they return to school. We will also hand out Valentines and Report Cards, when we return to school.

Friday is a PD Day for all elementary students.

In the Report Card is a form for interviews. You are welcome to request an interview, should you wish to discuss your child's progress with any of his/her teachers. The teacher may also request an interview. 

***Don't forget - Papa Jack Popcorn orders are due by Wednesday. Please see the flyer on the website, and order through Cash Online

Sunday, 3 February 2019

Week 21: February 4-8, 2019

Sorry for not blogging last week - with 2 snowdays, then a PD Day the previous week, there didn't seem to be much to write about! 

It's hard to believe we are already just past the halfway point of the school year. Report cards are being written and printed, ready to go home on Feb. 14. 

We have a busy couple of weeks coming up!  

*On Monday, Wednesday and Friday, students will be participating in Jungle Sport! This huge climbing apparatus is a lot of fun for students, and really helps them to develop their gross motor skills and coordination. They have a lot of fun with it! Please remember to make sure your child has running shoes that tie or velcro securely, and are wearing loose, comfortable clothes that they can move all around in (turn upside down, etc.). 
*On Wednesday, the Gr. 6 classes are going skiing for the second time, so Gr. 5 will be with me for the whole day. Gr. 4 students will be placed in other classrooms, just like they were on Friday last week, to work on French and other assignments. They will participate in Junglesport as usual.
*On Monday, Feb. 11 we will have our next Faith Buddy day on the theme of Love. We will partner with our Kindergarten Faith Buddies and complete an activity on the theme of love together.
*On Tuesday, Feb. 12 we have Zumba Day! Students will participate in a block of Zumba with Paco. They usually really enjoy this high energy dance / exercise activity!
*Wednesday is the Girl's Handball tournament, for those who tried out and made the school team
*Thursday, Feb. 14 (Valentine's Day) is our Field Trip to the Canadian Science and Technology Museum. Thank you to the parents who submitted their completed Police Check, and volunteered to accompany us on this trip. If you have not yet returned your child's permission slip, please do so as soon as possible.
*Friday, Feb. 15 is a PD Day for elementary schools.
*Monday, Feb. 18 is Family Day!

Thank you to everyone who participated in Litterless Lunch last week. We don't yet have our totals, but we had a high participation rate!

In between all of these events and snow days, we have tried to fit in some academics. Both grades are working on multiplication, with gr. 4 working on single digit by single digit, and Gr. 5 on 2 digit by 2 digit. Both groups are allowed to use whatever method works best for them, (other than a calculator!), whether it is drawing a picture, using base 10 blocks, making an array, using the algorithm, skip counting, repeated addition, or using the windowpane method (Gr. 5).

In Language Arts, Grade 5 are listening to the read-aloud Kensuke's Kingdom. Michael has just washed up on shore on a deserted island, and Kensuke has found him, but not befriended him. Gr. 4 have just completed the last of their How To slide shows. Both groups are also working on a Genius Hour idea to share with the class. Have them explain Genius Hour to you, or email me for more information.

Hopefully the rain / freezing rain / ice pellets /  snow combination that has been falling most of the day doesn't impact school tomorrow!

Sunday, 20 January 2019

Week 19: January 21-25

Well, that was quite the storm this weekend! I hope the weather is not as cold next week! There will be lots of fresh snow to play in tomorrow in the school yard, as long as the windchill doesn't keep the children inside.

The next math unit, for both grades, is multiplication and division. We will be reviewing strategies for mental math (doubles, doubles plus one, halving and doubling, etc) before moving into larger numbers. Whether your child has their times tables memorized, or has strategies for multiplication of single digits to 10x10 (Gr. 4) and 12 x 12 (Gr. 5) for fast recall is an individual choice; both are effective.

In Language Arts, we are working on sequencing. Gr. 4 enjoyed explaining how to make a cheese sandwich by giving me specific instructions (with hilarious results!), and then followed directions to make Jello on Friday. Gr. 5 students followed the steps and directions in a play, The Sword in the Stone, which they read aloud.  They are now working on explaining how to do something in 5 or 6 steps in Google slides, which they will present to the class. Gr. 5 will be starting a novel study, Kensuke's Kingdom, which is a very interesting and enjoyable realistic fiction novel. 

Image result for kensuke's kingdom

Don't forget - Friday is a PD day!