Hello and Welcome!

Dear Families,


Hello! My name is Ms. Elissa and I am delighted to welcome you to Room 16! I hope you guys are sharing an enjoyable summer together. My summer has been full of adventure; I took some classes, traveled to LA and Denver, and spent some time with family and friends. I am looking forward to the new school year and meeting each of you!


This will be a positive year for your child as we build on past successes and learn new things in the third grade! I place emphasis on creating a sense of community with my students and building personal relationships with each child. I recognize the importance of structure and routines as well as students’ need for movement and exploration. Part of creating a cohesive classroom community is parent involvement – I am looking forward to getting to know each of you over the school year, too! With home and school working together, your child’s academic and social skills will continue to grow throughout the year.   Another way to keep in touch is via our classroom blog: http://www.mselissa3.wordpress.com – I update it frequently with photos and other goodies that you can share with family and friends.


In Room 16, we are starting off the year by looking back. Waaaay back. We are going to have a “Who’s That Baby?” bulletin board up to see who can match the student to their baby photo. This will reinforce the feeling of our class as a family and community of learners (plus it’s fun!) In order to do this, your child will need to bring in a baby photo on the first day of school. I can’t wait to see them!


In order to know your child better and gain insight to help guide my teaching, I am asking for your help. I would like to know your child as an individual, as a student, and as a reader. An open letter from you to me would help me get a head start in learning about your child. What are your child’s interests? How does your child express himself/herself best—through art, speaking, writing, music, etc.? Are there any special needs or concerns? These are just a few ideas of what your letter to me might include. You know your child best, so add any information that you would like me to have as we kick off this year together.


I am looking forward to hearing from you and also to beginning the year with your child. I also look forward to working with you to support and enrich your child’s academic growth. Please email your letter to edingus@pps.net or send your letter to school on the first day. See you on Tuesday, September 2nd!


Elissa Dingus

P.S. Here is a picture of me  and my brother when I was in third grade!

Elissa 3rd Grade

Last Field Trips of the Year

On Monday and Tuesday of this week, we ventured forth into our city – once to play in the park with our kindergarten buddies, and once to see some of Portland’s bridges in person. Both trips were delightful and filled with smiles. See for yourself:



















-Ms Elissa

News from Room 5 – Final Week!

This week is a frenzied blur of presentations, sending home items from the classroom, finishing projects, and cleaning. There is so much to do with the rest of our time together.
The Portland bridges arrived on Monday, and they look remarkable! The students love to walk slowly by, admiring each one on our way down the hall. Students shared their models with the class on Tuesday and we each learned some new facts about familiar places. Families, thank you for all of your help and guidance with that project – the results are simply astounding.
We are rapidly trying to finish up our final art/writing project: a Frida Kahlo inspired self portrait mounted between a Wordle of kind words and a reflection essay on each student’s favorite parts of the year. We may not have time to hang them in the hall, but the results will be something to cherish.
Friday afternoon at 2:00 pm, we will putting on a show of student-written fables as acted out with shadow puppets. Afterwards, we will say some goodbyes and watch a slideshow of the many photos from the year. I will provide some snacks. Come join us for our final celebration of hard work and creativity if you can, we’d love to have you!
Finally, I would like to say that it has been absolutely wonderful to get to know all of you over the course of this year. We have laughed, learned, and grown together and I will miss these guys a ton. I would also like to thank you, families, for all of your support and help throughout the year. I couldn’t have done it without you.
Have a wonderful summer (and don’t forget to READ!)
-Ms. Elissa



























Art Night 2014

Oops! I found an unpublished blog entry from last month… Enjoy!

Last night was another successful Art Night at Lewis school. All the docents did a wonderful job and the art was truly incredible. It seemed like everyone had a good time, despite the heat and humidity in our hall. Here are our hardworking docents (I may have missed a couple of you guys because it was so crowded at times):

















-Ms. Elissa

News from Room 5 – June 3, 2014

Welcome to June!  I can’t believe it’s here already.  We are scuttling about finishing up projects, learning about bridges, and starting to think back on our year together.

I hope to see you here on Friday afternoon at 2:30 for the culmination of  our Portland history unit!  The students are going to help me turn our classroom into an interactive timeline over the next few days.  They will have their individual and collaborative pieces on display and can take you on a tour through time!  

The Portland bridge projects are due next Monday, June 9th.  I sent home a small piece of information about the bridge of your child’s choice.  We had a talk about the difference between using an article as a resource versus plagiarism; students know they can use the information to gather ideas, details, and dates, but they need to write it in their own words for their essay.  Additionally, here are a few good internet resources for the Portland bridges: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transportation_in_Portland,_Oregon#Willamette_River  This takes you to Wikipedia’s page and all of the Willamette and Columbia river bridges have their own links  – Choose the one for you!  http://www.bizave.com/portland/bridges/ This link has many photos of Portland’s bridges as well as a history section.  FInd your bridge on the left side and explore!  If you find any other websites that are helpful – pass them along!  I’ll make sure to share them with everyone.

Please make sure your child returns their permission slip with $3.00 by Friday.  Additionally, I hope that some of you will be able to join us for our field trips on Monday  and Tuesday.  Please send me an email or sign up outside the classroom if you are available.

Finally, I want to prepare our class for doing some great summer reading by having a third grade book swap.  Each student can bring in 2-3 books that they are ready to pass on to a new home and trade them out for some fun and interesting reads from a friend.  I am starting to cull our classroom library of books that are a little beat up to add to the swap collection.  Take a look at home to see what you can bring in to trade!

Enjoy the sunshine!

-Ms. Elissa