News from Squad 16 – May 24, 2017

Our field trip to the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center is on Thursday and we are excited to hear about and see some artifacts from Portland’s Historic Japantown.  We will be taking a look at two different exhibits in the museum and take a stroll along the plaza to see some poetry.  If you are interested in extending your own knowledge or supporting your child’s learning, their website has a list of the current exhibits:  One of the items listed on their page is a downloadable app for a self-guided walking tour of Historic Japantown!

On Tuesday afternoon we had our final performance for our residency with Alex Addy, our Ghanaian drumming teacher.  It was a blast to see these guys drumming and dancing their hearts out!

I am happy to announce the end of the year 4th grade Family Breakfast will take place on Friday, June 9th from 8:15 – 9:00 am.  This will be a celebration of bringing our storyline unit to a close and a time to get together as a community and share some food.  (Fingers crossed that we won’t get snowed out this time! 😀 )  More info. on this to come soon.

Keep practicing those multiplication facts and enjoy the sun!

-Ms. Elissa

News from Squad 16 – May 17, 2017

This week we are wrapping up our multi-digit multiplication unit.  The post-assessment will be at the end of the week and so we are taking the time to review and remember back to all the strategies we have for multiplication.  Students are doing a stellar job of showing all of their work and making sure their thinking is clear.  These guys will be ready to tackle the vertical algorithm in 5th grade!

Homework has returned this week and we had a pretty dismal rate of turned in assignments on Tuesday.  Please make sure your child is completing their homework to the best of their ability, whatever that may be.  I’d rather have a few errors on a page than nothing turned in at all.

Next Tuesday our class will be performing what we have learned in our Ghanaian Drumming residency.  We would love to have you come join us if you can!  Our assembly will be from 1:15-2:15 pm in the cafeteria.  Come watch us drum, dance, and have fun on stage!

Next Thursday is our field trip to the Nikkei Legacy Center.  We will be looking at some artifacts and models of Japantown in Portland, some artwork depicting Japanese Americans, and we will get to take a stroll along the plaza.  Please remind your child to bring appropriate outerwear for potential rainy weather.  Fingers crossed for sun!

Thank you for all that you do!

-Ms. Elissa

News from Squad 16 – May 10, 2017

Testing, and storyline, and drumming, oh my!  This week we are working to finish up the math portion of the Smarter Balanced Assessment, build Japantown, and we began our African Drumming residency with Alex Addy from the Obo Addy Legacy Project.

This week in our Japanese American storyline, students are working in their family groups to create a box model of their family’s business.  They are very creative and have a ton of well thought out details!  Check them out on our class Twitter: @epdingus

We are nearing the end of our multi-digit multiplication unit.  Students have shown major growth in their ability to tackle large multiplication problems which is exciting to see!  This week and next week we will review the strategies we have covered so far and take a look at multiplying even larger numbers.  We will take the post-test sometime next week.

There is no homework being assigned this week.  Students should be practicing their multiplication facts daily as well as searching for any lost homework assignments to turn in for credit.

Enjoy the sun!

-Ms. Elissa

News from Squad 16 – May 3, 2017

This week we are getting ready for Art Night and starting our Japanese American storyline unit.  If your child signed up to be a docent for Art Night, I sent home their time slot and a short script for them to practice.  We will make some time to practice at school as well.  I hope that I will see all of you at Art Night, this Thursday from 6:00-7:30.  If you are unable to make it on Thursday, fear not!  The art will remain up in the halls over the next several weeks and I recommend taking a stroll through the building when you have a spare moment.  It is truly a sight to behold!

We dove into our storyline unit on Monday.  Students have been organized into family groups who had applied for a visa to immigrate to the U.S. from Japan.  So far, families have received their letter of acceptance, made the 7,800 mile steamship journey across the Pacific, and started planning their business that their family will open in Portland’s Japantown.  Our families will be opening a barbershop, a grocery store, a laundry, a hotel, and a restaurant.  Soon, we will be creating our characters and building our businesses.  We are still on the hunt for useful crafting supplies.  If you have odds and ends: fabric, neat paper, beads, etc, send them in!

If you have not yet returned your permission slip for the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center field trip towards the end of the month, please do so as soon as possible.

Thank you!

-Ms. Elissa

News from Squad 16 – April 26, 2017

With Art Night coming up fast (May 4th 6:00-7:30 pm), I am on the lookout for docents to help visitors understand the pieces we created this year.  If your child is interested, please return your yellow docent slip ASAP.  I would also love to have some parent help with mounting artwork this week – please stop by or send me an email if you would like to come in and help out for a few minutes!

We also have a field trip to the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center coming up on Thursday, May 25th.  This trip will support our upcoming storyline unit on Japanese Americans in the time surrounding WWII.  There is a cost of $5 per child for this trip which covers museum entrance and a Trimet pass.  Please return your slip by next Wednesday, May 3rd.

This week students are working on the writing portion of the Smarter Balanced Assessment.  On Thursday or Friday, we will take a look at the practice test for the math portion and think about strategies to help ourselves be successful.  Your student may be feeling some testing fatigue during these weeks and may benefit from some extra time to relax their mind.

In math we are cruising into 2 digit by 2 digit multiplication strategies.  Students will learn to sketch a large array and find partial products first, which will support taking the next steps toward learning the traditional algorithm.  This may feel awkward and confusing at first to many students which is perfectly normal.  Please remember that students should be able to complete their homework independently.  It is far more important to me to see where students need reteaching on a concept than it is for them to have perfect homework every night.

Thank you for all that you do!

-Ms. Elissa