Scholastic Reading Club

Good news! This month’s Scholastic Reading Club flyers are ready for you to explore with your child. Children read more when they choose their own books, so I encourage you to look at the flyers together. Each flyer is filled with grade-specific, and affordable titles.

Place your order online at scholastic.com/readingclub or return the order form and payment to me. Ordering online is the easiest way to ensure I get your order on time. Also, there are more books to choose from as well as teacher recommendations.

Remember, for every book you order, our class earns FREE Books and supplies…and we have our eye on some new additions.

Thank you for your support!

PS: Books make wonderful gifts! Please let me know if your order includes a gift, and I will contact you when it arrives.

Ordering online is fast and easy:

  •  VISIT scholastic.com/readingclub
  •  ENTER the one-time Class Activation Code GMQ6R
  •  SHOP from a carefully curated selection of the best books, value packs, and Storia eBooks
  •  SUBMIT your order and earn FREE Books for our classroom
  •  All book orders will be shipped to our classroom so we can celebrate the joy of reading together!

100th Day of School This Week

Jan. 26-30, 2015

Upcoming dates:

Jan. 28: 100 day of school weather permitting: Don’t forget that each student is encouraged to design their own t-shirt to wear that day.

Jan. 29th: Soup and the 7 Habits: 6:00pm. GES

Feb. 13th: 9:00am. Field Trip to GHS to watch Princess and the Pea.

 

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 3, week 1

reading stations

comprehension

journal writing

beginning sounds

sight words games

Parents please remember to help your students practice their sight words each night. Let me know if you need another list. A good sight word vocabulary is imperative to learning to read.

writing about being 100

 

Math:

counting to 100 by ones, fives, tens

making a hundred necklace

learning about the clock

telling time to the hour

 

Science:

solid, liquid, gas

 

I am in need of a few items this week if you are able to help. Please let me know or just send it in by Wed. Jan. 28th:

 

1 Big Box of Fruit Loops

large bag of gummy bears

1 2 liter of Root Beer

half gallon of vanilla ice cream

 

Martin Luther King Jr Holiday, Jan. 19th

Jan. 12-16, 2015

Upcoming dates:

Jan. 13th: Some K students have been asked to attend the school board meeting on Jan. 13 to present on our engineering projects. Others are welcome to come. Students are asked to meet at the Goochland Administration building at 6:10pm.

Jan. 16: show and tell and ice cream day

Jan. 19th: Martin Luther King Jr. holiday: no school

 

***Don’t forget to return the permission form for our field trip to GHS to see Princess and the Pea. Let me know if you lost your permission form and I will send home another one.

 

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 2, week 4

mid-year PALS screening during reading station time

sight words games

 

Math:

number order activities

math stations

counting to 100 practice-Please help your child practice counting to 100 by ones, fives, and tens.

 

Social Studies:

Martin Luther King Jr.

Happy New Year!

Jan. 5-9, 2015

 

Happy New Year and Welcome Back!

Upcoming dates:

Jan. 9th: Report Cards Sent Home.

Jan.9th: Show and Tell and ice cream day. Don’t forget to send in 60 cents for ice cream in a labeled bag or envelope.

Jan. 19th: Martin Luther King holiday: no school

 

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 2, week 3

reading simple text

sight word identification

stories on line

concept of word

spelling and tapping CVC words

 

Math:

number sense for numbers 11-15

practicing writing the numbers

math stations

 

Social Studies:

New Years Resolutions

snow activities

making snowglobes

snowmen

mid-year writing sample

 

 

Tacky Sweater Day, Dec. 16th, Pajama Day, Dec. 19th

Dec. 15-19, 2014

I would like to wish all my students and families a wonderful Christmas and New Year. Enjoy your winter break!

Upcoming dates:

Dec. 16th: Tacky Sweater Day: all GES students and staff are encouraged to wear their Tackiest Holiday Sweaters to school

Dec. 19th: Pajama Day: All students can wear appropriate pajamas to school. Please make sure your child does not wear spaghetti straps. Girls who wear long gowns should wear pants underneath.

Holiday Read Aloud –school wide from 9:30-10:30am

Holiday Party, 12:40-1:00pm, Early Dismissal, 1:00pm.

Dec. 22- Jan 2: Winter Break

 

Please remember the weather is colder. Your child should definitely wear a coat to school so we can still enjoy outdoor recess in the cold weather. Please make sure all coats, hats, gloves, etc are labeled with your child’s name.

Language Arts:

We will be doing reading stations this week, but I will not be sending home STAR readers or reading books.

Fundations Unit 2,week 2-students will start spelling and tapping CVC words

reading simple text

comprehension strategies

sight word games

 

Math:

journaling story problems

practicing counting to 100 by ones, fives, tens

math stations

 

 

Social Studies:

Holidays Around the World continued

 

Calendar Sales: I will be sending calendars home this week for those who prepaid.

I can order more at anytime. So please let me know if you would still like one.

 

 

 

Taking Risks

This morning I returned from VSTE and hit the ground running. When I stepped into Ms. Kass’s room to say hello, she showed me the projects the students were developing on their iPads. A few minutes later, I stopped by Ms. Potter’s office to let her know I was back in the building. The first thing she asked was, “Did you see the amazing stuff Ms. Kass and her students are doing?” Of course, I had just been there. Here is an administrator’s take on our iPad program and the learning environments it is helping us create.

 

Winter Program Tonight

Second and Third grade students will meet their teachers in the GHS cafeteria.  I am asking all students to be present in the cafeteria, with their class by 6:15 PM.  Once your child has found their teacher, please find a seat in the auditorium.

Check out Mrs. Watts Blog for more details!

Dec. 8-12

Upcoming dates:

Dec. 10th: Winter Play at GHS: Please come join us GHS to see the upper grades perform our winter play. Kindergarten students are not involved in this performance, but I am sure you will love the show!

Dec. 16th: Tacky Sweater Day

Dec. 19th: Holiday Party, 12:40-1:00pm, Early Dismissal, 1:00pm.

 

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 2,week1-students will start spelling and tapping CVC words

reading simple text

comprehension strategies

using technology to learn

sight word games

 

Math:

ordinal numbers-students will be practicing learning ordinal numbers 1st-10th.

math stations

 

Social Studies:

Holidays Around the World continued

Children’s Engineering Activities: Please collect your toilet paper and paper towel rolls for us. We also can reuse recyclables such as clean empty water bottles, yogurt containers, egg cartons, and small boxes. You can send in anything you would like to donate with your student and I will put it in our STEM lab.

 

Calendar Sales: WE ARE SELLING CALENDARS FOR A FUNDRAISER TO BUILD OUTDOOR EASELS. EACH CHILD MADE A CALENDAR PAGE. THE COST OF EACH CALENDAR IS $15. PLEASE LET ME KNOW IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PLACE AN ORDER.  I BET SOMEONE IN YOUR FAMILY WOULD LOVE TO HAVE ONE AS A GIFT!

 

 

 

 

 

Ready, Set, Research!

Today and tomorrow I am working with Ms. Thomas and Ms. Samuel, 8th grade Language Arts teachers, helping them kick off their research unit. We are using Schoology, Google, and Wikipedia.

Yes, yes, I know. Google is making us stupid and Wikipedia can’t be trusted. If you say so…

I think these tools are indispensable in today’s world. They are only seen as bad by people who don’t want to take the time to educate kids on how to get the  most out of them. Wikipedia is the absolute best place to start any search. Articles are written in very accessible language and organized in ways that help students narrow down topics, formulate a research question, and get to the original location of the information by following the links at the bottom. Google has given us A Google a Day puzzles to help students hone their search term selection skills. With the appropriate guidance, students can learn lots about validating sources, something they miss when using a paid service such as GALE (does anyone still use GALE?).

Schoology is letting us curate student ideas using the discussion tool. It is also making the distribution of documents and links to students very, very easy. Using a folder with student completion requirements, students will race each other to solve selected A Google a Day puzzles to earn badges.

Of course, when we are done with this introductory phase, students will take notes and draft their papers using Google Docs, and using Teacher Dashboard, Ms. Thomas and Ms. Samuel will be able to give timely feedback and scaffold progress without killing any trees.

Enjoy Your Break!

I hope everyone has a relaxing few days home with family and friends.

Dec. 1-5, 2014

 Updates

I am so proud of how well the students did with their Thanksgiving Play. See my blog for pictures.

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 1, week 12, letter focus q and z

stations for reading groups

concept of word activities

comprehending a story

beginning sound sorts

sight word activities-please remember to put the sight words on index cards and practice each night at home

writing your name kindergarten style: please help your child practice at home. Only the first letter should be uppercase.

 

Class Books: We have started writing class books on the computer. Please read them with your child and return them the next day so others can enjoy them.

 

STAR readers come home on Tuesdays and should be returned when finished. These books are just books that the school has supplied that we can send home for family reading time.

Reading books come home on either Wednesdays or Thursdays and should be returned the very next day. These are in a plastic baggy labeled read and return.

 

Math:

pattern candy canes

counting forwards and backwards

counting to 100 practice

making sets of 10

math stations

 

Social Studies:

Holidays Around the World

 

Calendar Sales: WE ARE SELLING CALENDARS FOR A FUNDRAISER TO BUILD OUTDOOR EASELS. EACH CHILD MADE A CALENDAR PAGE. THE COST OF EACH CALENDAR IS $15. PLEASE LET ME KNOW IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO PLACE AN ORDER.  I BET SOMEONE IN YOUR FAMILY WOULD LOVE TO HAVE ONE AS A GIFT!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yearbooks

The yearbook flyers will be going home today.  The flyers are advertising an “Early Bird Special” on the yearbooks for $17 until December 16.  After that date, the price goes up to $20.

* Checks to be made payable to BES

Grandparent’s Day is Coming Up!

Nov. 10-17, 2014

 Updates

Mark Your for These Important Dates:

Nov.17-21: Book Fair at GES

Nov. 19th: Grandparents Day: grandparents are invited to come each lunch with the students. Please RSVP

Nov. 25: K Thanksgiving Play, 8:45am in the cafeteria. Please RSVP: Parents are invited to join us for muffins after the play.

 

Activities planned for the week:

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 1, week 10, letter focus v and w

stations for reading groups

beginning sound sorts

sight word activities-please remember to put the sight words on index cards and practice each night at home

writing your name kindergarten style: please help your child practice at home. Only the first letter should be uppercase.

 

Math:

ordinal numbers

number bonds

writing numbers and making sets

counting to 100 practice

calendar activities

 

Social Studies:

learning about American Indians

making Indian vests

Indian pattern necklaces

Indian headbands

practicing for our play

 

 

 

 

November Already?

Nov. 3-7, 2014

 Updates

Mark Your for These Important Dates:

Nov. 4th: No School for students/Parent Teacher Conferences.

Nov. 19th: Grandparents Day: grandparents are invited to come each lunch with the students.

Nov. 25: K Thanksgiving Play, 8:45am in the cafeteria. Please RSVP

 

Activities planned for the week:

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 1, week 9, letter focus l, k, h

stations for reading groups

beginning sound sorts

jellyfish paper bag puppet

 

 

Math:

number sense for numbers 0-10

math stations

turkey counting book

 

Social Studies:

learning about pilgrims

making a mosaic corn

 

 

 

 

 

Fall Farmers Market

FALL FARMERS MARKET

Byrd Elementary School

Date: November 18, 2014

Time: 5:30-7:00 PM

Where: BES Multi-purpose Room

What’s for Sale:

Ice Cream Sundaes

Coasters

Face Painting

“Byrd” Butter

Pumpkin Muffins

Cold Apple Cider

Ducktape Pens/Pencils

Starburst Wrapper Bracelets

Tatoos

Wreaths

Christmas Ornaments

Painted Letters

Hemp and String Bracelets

Decorative T-Shirts

Homemade Dog Treats

Acorn Babies and Fairies

Holiday Items, Gift Tags

Christmas Shakers

Gently Used Books

Origami

Jar Gifts

Penny Candy

Brownies

Soda, Water Bottles

Bottle Cap Necklaces with Byrd School Theme

Applesauce

Homemade Caramel Popcorn

Gourmet Popcorn

Lemonade

Rice Crispy Treats

Veggie Soup

Baked Goods

Plants

Book Character Day is Friday, Oct. 31

Oct. 27-Oct. 31, 2014

 Updates

Mark Your Calendars:

Oct. 27, 28th: Mrs. Alvis will be at a conference for kindergarten teachers. Your students will have a substitute.

Oct. 27th: Report Cards Go Home

Oct. 31st: School Wide Book Character Day: students may dress as their favorite book character. No scary outfits or toy weapons of any kind. Please have your child bring his/her book with them to show the class. Our book character outfits will be our show and tell on this day. We will parade around the school at 2:30pm and have our Halloween party around 2:40pm.

Nov. 4th: No School for students/Parent Teacher Conferences: Please call the office at 556-5321 if you would like to schedule a conference.

 

Activities planned for the week:

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 1, week 8, letter focus j and p

station practice for reading groups

beginning sound sorts

jellyfish paper bag puppet

reading lots of great stories whole group and developing comprehension

 

Math:

Counting forwards and backwards from 10

graphing

probability tossing/flip game and graphing

number sense activities for number 0-9

 

Social Studies:

community maps

 

Science:

life cycle of a pumpkin

fall trees

leaf sorting

 

 

 

Open Letter to Goochland Elementary School

Dear students, teachers, and staff,

Thank you so much for inviting me to speak at your school. I had a super fun time talking about bugs and other tiny things with all of you. You were all so attentive and respectful, and I was blown away by your eagerness to learn.

I am sorry we ran out of time before we got through everything you wanted to see. Thankfully, I am just down the road from you and I can stop by again sometime. Remember we have our blogs, Schoology, and email, and I can send a few more pictures your way. Dr. Hendron and I will also make sure all 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders have a copy of my book in their iBooks app.

I hope I have inspired many of you to take a closer look at what might be under your feet of hiding in your yard. Remember every living thing has a proper place on the planet, and has a purpose. Take good care of all of them.

IMG_1338 copy IMG_4836 copy IMG_5582 copy IMG_6393 copy

 

Again, thank you for the invitation, and I hope to see you all again soon.

Ms. Leiderman

FALL Festival

The FALL Festival here at Byrd is coming soon- October 30th!

We are asking for donations of a bag of candy.

Thanks for your continued support- it is very much appreciated.

No School on Oct. 13th

Oct. 13-17, 2014

 Updates

Mark Your Calendars:

Oct. 13th: No School: Columbus Day, No School for students

Oct. 14th: Mrs. Alvis will be in leadership training and will have a substitute.

Oct. 17th: Pink Out: everyone at GES in encouraged to wear pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Oct. 25th: Trunk or Treat and Outdoor Classroom dedication, beginning at 4:30pm.

Oct. 27th: Report Cards Go Home

 

Activities planned for the week:

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 1, week 6, letter focus s and d

learning facts about snakes and making a pattern snake

beginning sound sort

reading the story Stone Soup and making “stone soup” (vegetable)

making rhyming bats

 

Math:

graphing

counting book

positional words and listening activity

math stations

 

Science:

life cycle of the pumpkin

life cycle of apple tree

 

Social Studies:

Halloween activities

 

 

Tech Snacks

This year we are trying a new way to meet our teachers’ needs. In the past, all teachers were expected to attend at least one two-hour technology class after school, or a longer class over the summer. But, two hours after a long day of teaching is not always easy. Furthermore, a two-hour session has to be planned in advance, something with a somewhat inflexible structure or topic.

Tech Snacks will be more informal sessions between twenty and thirty minutes long. The topic and location will be announced a few days before and will reflect questions asked by faculty and staff during the week. I believe this will make the sessions more relevant and the content presented will be immediately applicable. So, if a two-hour class is a full meal to be digested over time, these shorter sessions are a snack that energize your teaching immediately.

In addition to members of the Instructional Technology team, teachers with cool ideas or interesting resources to share will be leading the sessions. If you have something you would like to share with the GHS/GMS faculty, please let me know. If I see you are doing something worth sharing, I will invite you to lead a session.

Here is the fine print:

  • The dates of the Tech Snacks have been tentatively set in our GCPS Tech PD calendar, but are subject to change. The day varies so people with prior weekly commitments can still take advantage of this resource.
  • Final date, location, and topic announcements will be made through the GMS and GHS faculty and staff groups on Schoology.
  • You do not need to sign up in advance. If the weekly topic is interesting and useful, and it fits your schedule, join us.
  • In order to meet your PD requirement, you must attend four Tech Snacks during the school year. Leading a session will also count as attending a session.

I hope this will be a successful model for us. Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions.

Scholastic Order

Please remember to place your Reading Club orders by October 08!

You can shop and submit your order online or return the printed order form with payment directly to me. No matter how you order, every purchase you make earns FREE Books and educational supplies for our classroom.

The arrival of the book box is always a highlight-thanks for making it happen!

Happy reading!

Field Trip to Carter Mountain, Friday, Oct. 10

Oct. 6-10, 2014

 Updates

Mark Your Calendars:

Oct. 6: Return your fundraiser postcards.

Oct. 10: Field Trip to Carter Mountain. My chaperone slots have all been filled. Chaperones and students should be here by 8:20am. Chaperones should wait for us in the cafeteria or at the front door. We plan to leave very close to 8:30am. Don’t forget that your child will need a bag lunch and juice boxes or water for the trip.

Sept. 29-Oct.10th: PALS Testing: please make sure your child has a good breakfast and is at school on time each day.

Oct. 8th: Spirit Night at McDonald’s in Centerville

 

Activities planned for the week:

Language Arts:

Fundations Unit 1, week 5 letter focus is on vowel a and g-we didn’t get to all of our materials for Fundations because of testing so we will continue with week 5 this week. No Fundations homework this week.

reading The Three Billy Goats Gruff

acting out a story

building a bridge engineering

beginning sound sort for letter g

 

Math:

matching seeds to numbers

number sense

goldfish graphing

 

Science:

continuing apple activities

 

Social Studies:

learning about Christopher Columbus

 

  • I have several holes in our party sign up sheet. You do not have to be here, but if you are willing to send in a simple treat, please let me know.

Schoology – A Cultural Shift for GCPS

Whenever I walk into a classroom where students are using computers during the first few minutes of class, I can bet my stash of good chocolate that at least a handful of kids will be logged into PowerSchool. This is true regardless of the subject area, grade level, time of the day, gender, socio-economic standing, or anything else.

This is a very important observation to share with teacher who are sometimes tempted to tell me their students cannot log into accounts, and that is their justification to use online services only with select groups.

Logging into PowerSchool has become a habit. The motivation is clear. There is important information in PowerSchool, the students want it, and they want it multiple times a day.

Despite its popularity, PowerSchool has limited functionality. Students can see grades and upcoming assignments. But, they cannot ask questions, leave comments, or submit missing work. All these gaps are filled by Schoology in a single place, with a single login.

So why not start using Schoology? The sooner you jump in, the sooner you will learn how to take advantage of all its functions. And the more you use it, the more likely your kids are to form the habit of logging in and participating. You don’t need to be in the 1:1 program. PowerSchool and WordPress were both very successful even before we dreamed of a 1:1 program.

Schoology and other tools like it are not a passing fad. Join the cultural shift and give your students the opportunity to become constructive digital citizens.