Hi everyone! What a fun and busy week! I am so disappointed that I was out 4 days this week, but I am so proud of the kids for representing LaPerche in a great way. Tuesday's field trip was windy but fun. The kids reported that they loved being outdoors and had a great time. A big thank you to Mrs. Fossa-Moretti for all of these great pictures. It looked so fun and engaging!
Mr. Connell hosted another amazing and successful Smithfield Elementary Schools Unified Field Day. The fifth graders played one of two roles - either an athlete's buddy or being in charge of one of the ten stations.
The ten stations were:
Rock wall Imagination Playground Bowling Blacktop Bike Race Basketball Volleyball Hurdle Baseball 3 Legged Race Tug of War.
Athletes and their buddies visited from William Winsor, McCabe and Old Country and enjoyed the morning visiting and competing throughout all of the stations. Congratulations to all of the athletes! THank you again to MRs. Fossa-Moretti for the pictures!
Hi Everyone! The sun is finally here and our spirits are up! We have been sneaking in so many little extra recesses and more class time in the gazebo. Here are some happy faces enjoying the sunshine!
Thank you so much for the sweet treats and kind words you have showered me with this week. I certainly feel appreciated all year but am loving all of the extra hugs this week.
We finished the two days of the Next Generation Science Assessment. The students did so well and worked so hard. They said they felt well prepared and enjoyed all of the fun review games and activities we did.
In our Mixtures and Solutions kit, we are discussing saturated solutions and that we can dilute them to make them less concentrated. We did a fun experiment in which we made a very heavily concentrated orange drink and observed it using our five senses. Then we diluted it and made the same observations. The reactions to the taste of how sweet it was at first was priceless. Take a look!
In physical education, the kids moved on from Quidditch to playing Pickleball. Pickleball is a paddle sport that combines elements of badminton, tennis, and table tennis. They play with teams of two players and they use solid paddles to hit a ball, similar to a Wiffle Ball, over a net. They are having so much fun and improving each week!
Congratulations to Nate and Sydney and Jacob and Nick for winning the Pickleball championship!
Spring is here! It is getting warmer and the kids are loving recess. We stayed out a bit longer on Tuesday and had fun making pyramids and having piggy back relay races. Check out some pictures!
Mixtures and Solutions is our third and final science kit of the year. The safety goggles are the favorite so far. We have created mixtures using gravel. diatomaceous earth, and salt and then used different methods to separate them. For a homework pass, ask your child what the four ways we separated our mixtures. (our hands, filter and funnel, screen, evaporation). After vacation we will be creating saturated salt solutions and study the different states of matter. Check out the pictures below of the class creating mixtures and recording their observations in their science notebooks. A special thank you to Kerri McMahon for all of her help during these experiments!
ELA RICAS is complete and I am absolutely in awe at how hard this class worked. I know they were exhausted, but they were so well prepared and showed such grit during the two long days. We practiced essay writing in the weeks leading up to RICAS and they are so used to writing responses that are 2500 characters, that they could probably write one in their sleep. We did an activity in which we learned about accountable talk while giving feedback to an author. The students paired up and read each other's essays. They gave each other compliments and suggestions to enhance their constructed responses. They did so well. Check out the hard working partners!
In math, we just completed chapter 9, adding and subtracting fractions. The students worked hard at finding and then converting numbers into common denominators so they could easily add and subtract. They are also added and subtracted mixed numbers. After vacation, we will be moving on to multiplying and dividing fractions. (a little scary) A special thank you to Melissa Oliver for helping us with these difficult concepts!
Reading Update - written by Audrey and Madeline
We are now moving on to fantasy in reading. We have learned some of the things included in a fantasy story. Some examples are, magic, talking animals, and events that would never actually happen. We also have new guided reading books that are fantasy genre. These include, Gregor the Overlander, by Suzanne Collins, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, by Kate DiCamillo, and The Jumbies, by Tracey Baptiste. Also, as a whole class, we are reading The Girl Who Drank the Moon, by Kelly Barnhill. We will be learning how the setting can actually act as a character in the book, as it does in Girl Who Drank the Moon. We will also be determining themes of our books and analyze the way characters react to different challenges throughout the stories.
Reading week was so much fun. We had special guest readers from the community including Officers Ryan and Squillante, former students of mine, Joey Pitrone and Chris Olean and players from the PC hockey team. On Tuesday, we also enjoyed a very funny and musical performance by Keith Munslow. Reading week is such a great reminder of the importance of finding a comfy space and get lost in a book. I plan on doing that during this vacation. (if I can find a quiet space somewhere in my first floor renovation project) Check out some pictures of reading week! Have a great vacation!
Hi! I hope everyone is safe and enjoying this snow day. I just got inside from five hours of sledding, fort making, and snow ball throwing! We are all soaked but had a great day. My sister lives 6 houses up from me, so snow days are even more fun with cousins.
Chapter six was very difficult and I will use the intervention block to continue to practice with the students who are still having trouble with multiplying and dividing decimals. Many of the errors were with the placement of the decimal in the product or quotient. I will be sending home practice packets for students who will still need to work on those skills. Our next chapter will teach us about greatest common factors, least common multiples and simplifying fractions. The kids were so happy to see something a little more 'doable'. Check out the blurb below written by Audrey about a fun review game we played.
House of Cards
By: Audrey Slaughter Biello
In math, we are learning about multiplying and dividing decimals. Mrs.E came up with a fun activity using playing cards. We had to complete math problems in teams of three to earn cards. The more difficult the problem meant that we earned more cards. There were three levels. The problems on the yellow paper earned 1 card, green earned 2 and pink earned the team 3 cards. Then after we had completed all the problems we had to try to build a house of cards with the cards we earned. We used strategies like solve all of the pink problems first to try and get the most cards. When time was up, whoever had built the highest house won. We had lots of fun competing to build the tallest with our cards. In the end, many many teams tied with 1 or 2 story high towers. It was a great afternoon. Check out some pictures!
Every morning, I put a prompt on the board and the students write a paragraph answering it. Last week, one of the prompts was "What is your most memorable lesson of this school year so far?" Jacob Sylvester wrote such a heart felt response explaining how much he loves visiting Ms. Feeley's class on Fridays. This sparked such a great discussion about the differences between grade level inclusion, social inclusion and reverse inclusion and why each are so important. We are still visiting each week to read to her students. The students in both classes have truly formed such special relationships and are learning more and more about each other each week. Ms. Feeley explained to me that the fifth graders are now running her reading circles and are providing opportunities for each of her students to participate in an individualized way. I am so proud of all of the kiddos and love this collaboration. Here are some pictures from last week. The group of six visitors change each week.
In reading, we are finishing up our guided reading books. We have been focusing on the theme of a story and how it changes the way we react to characters and plots. A theme is a lesson or real-world connection that a reader gets from
reading a story. It is usually not stated by the author and must be inferred. Some common themes that we have discovered in our stories are:
Be prepared Actions speak louder than words Money doesn’t buy happiness
Practice and persistence pays off Don’t wait until the last minute
Don’t be jealous of others Cheating does pay off in the end
We are soon going to move on to the genre of fantasy. I have a feeling we are going to have a bunch of very happy fifth graders!
In Science, we are finishing up the Earth and Sun unit. This week we will learn about the water cycle process. The students will investigate the steps of the water cycle and will describe each step including the state of matter that the water is in during each step. Students will learn that the sun is a crucial part of the water cycle and that the water's state of matter can go back and forth. Students will demonstrate their understanding of the water cycle by designing and building their own water cycle model. This is so much fun - I can't wait to show you pictures! Our last unit will be mixtures and solutions, however, we will shift to Social Studies and study government and economics for 4 weeks before returning to science.
In writing, we are writing imagined narratives. The students created their own characters last week and this week will think of problems and solutions that their characters will experience. This is a favorite among the students because they can really show their creativity. Their writing is improving each week. We did a fun mini lesson in which the students had to take a piece of work from their portfolio and check their sentence fluency. The students had to highlight the first word in each sentence. They recorded these words in a list and were so shocked to see that most of their sentences started with the same word! We also counted and graphed the number of words in each of their sentences and wow - was this an eyeopener. Some of the students shared that they had 34, 41 and even 53 words in some of their sentences. This showed them the importance of sentence fluency and editing their work to make sure they have punctuation! Ask your child to share their findings with you after they graphed their words!
We always make time for outdoor fun! They have been working so hard and earned another extra recess.
I wanted to say congratulations to Alana for being chosen to represent LaPerche in showing her beautiful piece of art at the State House last Wednesday. We are so proud of her!
Hi Everyone! Just a quick picture post. It was so beautiful today that we had our math lesson outside and then an extra recess. What a great way to recharge!
Hi Everyone! I hope you're all having a great weekend. We have been so busy! First of all, the pasta dinner was such a success. My family and I were amazed at how professional and confident all of the 'employees' were. Thank you to the fabulous team who waited on my husband, my kids and me. We had a great time visiting with LaPerche families and my boys loved seeing all of your kids!
The most exciting news to share is about our field trip to Gillette! It was such an amazing field trip and the students represented LaPerche so well. I want to thank all of the chaperones for coming along with us and for your patience waiting for lunch! During our trip, we toured the hall of fame and learned about Patriots history and were able to engage in the interactive exhibits. The students participated in a STEM activity. It was an engineering challenge in which the students had to design a helmet that would protect the skull and brain of a football player. They learned about all of the different styles of helmets football players have worn throughout the years. The guide talked about the importance of designing a helmet to protect the skull and brain of the football players. The students were given a variety of materials and time to create their helmets. One group had to design the outer part of the helmet and one group had to design the inside part that protects the brain. They tested their designs and we were so amazed at their creativity - they did so well! For a homework pass, ask your child which president is responsible for the invention of the football helmet! Check out some pictures of our day.
In science, we are continuing to learn about the different components of the solar system. A few of the activities we have done over the past few weeks were so much fun. The students were divided into groups of three and each group was given a planet to study. They had to create an informational poster and present it to the class. They did so well and the students learned so much new information. Another fun activity was the students were able to create the phases of the moon with Oreos. Check out these pictures!
We are also learning about different constellations in science. For this activity, students turned their bodies into a constellation that they will now research and report to the class. Here are a few pictures of our 5th grade constellation kids!
In reading, we are well into our guided reading groups. The groups have finished their first novels and will choose their new ones tomorrow. They are really enjoying our new reading schedule. This rotating schedule gives the students the freedom to practice time management skills. They are given an assignment during their group's meeting and it may not be due for 2,3 or even 4 days and it's their job to find the time to do it and get it done. Some choose to do it right away, and others prefer to independently read during our reading block and do their guided reading 'jobs' at night. Either way, this freedom is a great preparation for middle school. Here is a peek at our schedule. It looks scary, but the kids are so used to the routine and do a great job.
We are also continuing with narrative writing. We are focusing on character point of view and perspective and how these points of view affect the way the reader interprets the story. This week we will be reading a story about Paul Bunyan and Johnny Appleseed, written from Bunyan's point of view. We will take notes on his perspective and how the reader and other characters react to certain events in the story. We will then reread it and record how Johnny Appleseed must have reacted to the same events. The students will rewrite the narrative from Johnny Appleseed's point of view. This is such a eye opening activity for the students about how people interpret the same events differently. This often leads to many conversations about things that happen on the playground - they often try to see things from the other's point of view. In grammar, we will be focusing on the perfect verb tense.
In math, we are well into chapter 6. The students are working hard multiplying and dividing decimals. They are rising to the challenge of this chapter and are impressing me more and more. I am also loving the confidence this class has in asking for extra help when needed. Chapter 7 will bring us to fractions, focusing on greatest common factor and least common multiple. Do those words bring back memories? Have a great week!
I hope everyone had a Happy New Year! It's been a while, so I want to catch you up on all of the fantastic things we have been doing.
We are so happy to be paired with Mrs. Clough's class for reading buddies. We met in December and did some fun getting to know you activities. Each student is paired with either one or two second graders. After they got to know a little about their partner, they chose their favorite holiday book and read it together. We are looking forward to many more fun times with our new friends. Check out some pictures!
We participated in two STEM activities in December. The first challenge was called the Gumdrop Christmas Tree Challenge. Each group was given 20 gumdrops and 20 toothpicks. Their objective was to construct the tallest possible Christmas tree from toothpicks and gumdrops. They had to come up with a procedure and they were timed in three different trials. The students had to then discuss what went well and what was challenging in each round. They then had to change a little part of their procedure between each trial to try and improve their design. I measured each tree with a ruler and the winner was 12 1/2 inches tall! They demonstrated such great teamwork and had so much fun. Check out some pictures!
Another fun STEM activity was to devise a plan to wrap an egg, in traditional Christmas present wrapping materials, in a way that would protect the egg from cracking when dropped from a ladder. The students were so creative and came up with such unique ideas and had so much fun working together.
In science, we are continuing to learn about the Earth, moon and sun. One of our activities took us outside to investigate how the position of the sun affects our shadows. We went outside at different times of the day and traced our shadows with chalk. Each time, we noticed how much our shadows moved based on the sun's position.. We also had a fun game of shadow tag! For a homework pass, ask your child these two questions and let me know if he/she answers correctly!
*What do you need to create a shadow? (a light source and a solid object)
*What does your shadow look like in the morning and noon? (longer in the morning, shortest at noon) Check out our pictures!
Another investigation we took part in was to use a model of the Earth and a flashlight to demonstrate the concept of sunrise and sunset. We also learned that the Earth rotates on an axis every 24 hours to create daylight and darkness. We also discovered while we are in daylight, the opposite hemisphere is in darkness. Students also used flashlights to reproduce the shadow movements to model how the Sun’s position in the sky changes during the day. Check out some pictures!
In math, we just finished multi digit division. This was a very difficult skill for the students to master, so we will continue to practice. We are now moving onto Chapter 5, adding and subtracting decimals. We start by rounding the decimals to get an idea of the concept, then we dive right in and add/subtract to the thousandths. Here are the anchor charts we will be using for this chapter.
In reading, our current focus is character study. We are examining and discussing how characters change throughout a story, using evidence to determine character traits, and classifying their archetype. We are still using SCAT as our mentor text and the students are also using Fish in a Tree and their group's novels to practice these skills.
In writing, we are continuing with narrative writing. The students are working on publishing their second personal narrative and are including vivid verbs, show don't tell, transition words, sensory details and adding feelings and emotions. We are also working hard on our constructed responses using the RACE model. The students are becoming experts!
Thanks for reading - we will update again soon!
Happy Sunday! We had a short week last week, but we did so much! Raking leaves was such a success. Special thanks to Kerri McMahon and Tim Guertin for battling the cold and helping us out. The homeowners were beyond thankful and I am excited to make this a yearly occurrence. It was cold and windy, but the kids raked and bagged 30 bags of leaves. The Department of Public Works also helped out and picked up the bags that day so they didn't have to stay too long on the curbside. Thank you to Melissa at the DPW for making that happen! Check out some pictures of the kids hard at work.
On Friday, The Patriot Guard Riders joined us for our yearly Veterans celebration. We were so lucky because they invited our fifth graders to line the main hallway holding flags in memory for those who stood for us. It was an incredible sight to see.
Hi Everyone! What an incredibly busy week! This week's blog is going to show you more of what we did rather than tell you. First, on Monday, we had an afternoon of pumpkin math! The fifth grade estimated and then did actual measurements of their pumpkin's weight, circumference, and height and determined if their pumpkin sank or floated. Then the pumpkins were cut open so they could dissect the inside and check to see their estimations of the number of seeds were correct. They had such a great time. Thank you to Sherri and Kerri for their help!
On Tuesday afternoon, we were lucky to have Dr. Paolucci join us for some Halloween Science fun. Students learned about properties of materials and chemical reactions through science demonstrations with a spooky theme. Disappearing flasks, fortune fish, fire breathing pumpkins, and water changing to wine to milk and then to soda appeared mysterious but had scientific explanations. Thank you, Dr. Paolucci!
Wednesday was definitely the best day of the week. Our class created and ran an 8 station Halloween Spooktacular Fun Festival for the students in Ms. Feeley, Mrs. Hayward, and Mrs. Harrison's classes. The students brainstormed engaging and challenging activities for the classes to enjoy. I am so proud of their hard work!
Here are some pictures of the brainstorming and creative sessions for the Halloween Spooktacular Festival!
The weather was so beautiful on Thursday, we had to take advantage of it! Here are some pictures of us working on two by two digit multiplication. with partners. We ran over to the playground after and snuck in a quick extra recess. They deserved it!
Wow! October disappeared so quickly! We. had a such a great week. Science was definitely the best part of each day because each lesson had such engaging experiments. First, we studied that leaves get their nutrients through veins, similar to humans. There are three types of veins. For a homework pass, ask your child to identify all three and give you a description of each. (parallel - vertical lines, palmate - many larger veins spreading from the bottom, pinnate- smaller veins spreading from one main center vein). After learning about the different types, we went outside and searched for examples of them. Check out some pictures!
We also had to say goodbye to our redworm compost jars. (mainly due to the amount of fruit flies inside the jars!) Four weeks ago, the students made predictions about the worms growing with and without the sun's energy and they were spot on! Our worms, both inside and out of the black bags, thrived on nutrients from leaves, fruit and the sun. They were so big when we released them. After we let them go, we had a party in which the kids did the worm dance and had piggy back races. We hope the worms live a happy life in the LaPerche woods!
In Physical Education, the students had their Quidditch drafts. The teams are created and the tournaments will begin next week. Good luck to all of the players!
This week in reading and writing, we finished researching our 8 big questions, and completed our glossary and works consulted page. (new words for bibliography) .I want to thank Kerri McMahon and Melissa Oliver for helping us finish. Matt, the representative from ARC (the company who created the program I am piloting) came in on Friday to teach a lesson to our class, First of all, I would like to say that the class was so amazingly engaged and respectful. There were about 13 adults in our classroom for about an hour and every student was at the top of his/her participation game. We received so many compliments, I felt like such a proud mama. Shout out to Cameron and Jacob Sylvester who got up and offered all of the adults chairs when they came in. That was all their idea! Such gentleman. Starting Monday, the students will now take the information from each research question and turn them into longer paragraphs, which will turn into pages of their ecosystem books. They will be writing a lot over the next few weeks, I can't wait to share the books with you! Here are some pictures of the exhausted researchers. I would also like to thank the Guilfoyle family for donating the awesome new black video chairs. The kids love them!
Our class is still spending time with the students in Miss Feeley's room. every Friday. She shared these pictures and also shared that her students absolutely love when we come in and read and play with them. Seeing the smiles on my students' faces when they come back to the classroom is, for a lack of a better word, so awesome. We are looking forward to doing so many more activities with Miss Feeley and Mrs. Hayward's classes.