Friday, January 30, 2009

Irregular Programming

AAARRGH! First off, I want to apologize profusely for the Math homework last night. I had used all of the "order of operations" exercises out of the book, but the kids still weren't quite getting it. I decided to print one off from online, and man was it hard. The kids who came in with it even attempted today got full credit for having done it. I gave them a much more straightforward edition of the same idea today in class. I apologize for any World War III-level fights in your houses last night. 

Today is bonkers. Luckily I've learned to keep them busy during these times of snow days and 2-hour delays. Now, instead of mass-chaos, it's a very organized mass-chaos. We had a parent in, we had specials today at an irregular time, we had Math, but I still needed to get as much as possible done with my homeroom. I put in a plea with the head honcho of the fifth grade, Mrs. Jackson, to not have Math on Monday so that we can get as much as possible done in homeroom that day.

As for next week's schedule: We're going to have really organized mass-chaos. 

Monday is Groundhog's Day. This will be our most "normal" day of the week next week. We will do some kind of activity to welcome Punxatawny Phil out of his hole, but other than that, it's going to be a fairly mundane kind of day. Well, with the hopeful exception of not having Math. We have a lot of Science to be catching up on, so between that and reading (which was going so well this week before Old Man Winter stepped in...), I'm hoping that next Monday we'll be able to play catch-up.

Tuesday is a half day, and that day we'll be having Buckeye and Hollowbones come in to visit with the kids. These are a couple of crazy back-woods ladies who give the kids all kinds of information in a very entertaining way of what it was like to live back in the Colonial Days...just not in the colonies. This is more like what it would have been like to be here in Indiana at the same time--a place of fur trappers and Native Americans and thick woods.

On Wednesday I will be in a meeting, and will not be with the kids. I'm still not exactly sure what will be going on that day, but I think it will probably end up being used as a day for the kids to get caught up on everything we've been working on. 

Thursday will also be a fairly common day, except that we have someone coming in during the morning to talk to the kids about germs and the importance of washing their hands. Let's hope the kids all become a bunch of OCD-ers by the end of the day. (ha) 

And then finally, Friday will be far from ordinary. It's one of my favorite days of the year. The kids come in their colonial costumes, they bring their colonial lunches, and we have a day full of tin-hole punching, old-timey games, storytelling, butter-churning, applesaucing, quilting, basket-making, and square dancing. Hopefully you're already volunteering for this one, because it's a lot of fun. 

Okay, so if you have any questions, just let me know. Then, after next week, I promise we'll go back to our normally scheduled...well, chaos.

Monday, January 26, 2009

New Site

Hey, folks. Head on over to , for book reviews by the kids. We have more kids wanting to post than we have time to post right now, so more should be up very shortly. I'm hoping this can be a new spot for kids to turn to in order to find books that they might be interested in reading.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Lock-Downs and Juice Lids

Hello, folks! 

Well, today we watched the inauguration on TV, went to the planetarium, and had an extra-long bus adventure. I told the kids that tomorrow it's back to business. There's way too much to do, and even though we got a little bit ahead earlier on in the year, we're just about where we need to be right now--but we have to stay where we need to be for the rest of the year, if that makes any sense. 

Next week we'll have a Caesar's English quiz, and this Friday is a Spelling test. 

I'll talk to everyone soon. I'm in the middle of moving right now, so I'm sorry if my response time is slow, my graded papers are slow to return, and if your child comes home and tells you there are a lot of empty boxes in my classroom because the custodians are delivering them to me. Please e-mail me if you have any questions. 

Oh, and I implore you, please sign up to volunteer for Colonial Days! And send in your juice can lids. 

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Still Writing '08 on the Board

Reminder #1: We need parent volunteers for Colonial Days! Gather your friends up and then everyone call Karen Watson or Carolyn Crane and tell them that YOU want to volunteer on February 6th for Colonial Days. It's lots of fun seeing the kids square dance, churn butter, and make baskets. 

Reminder #2: The canned food drive for Student Council is going on right now. The benefits the local Food Pantry. Right now there is more need for this than we've had in a long time, sadly.

Well, this first week back after break, we started in with our unit on Astronomy. We've been learning about all things space-related, from Aristotle and Caliph Harun al-Rashid to the mysterious depths of black holes. 

In Math, we're continuing a unit on Geometry that we didn't get finished up in time for winter break, but it shouldn't take too much longer. There are only about two or three lessons left, and then the obligatory few days of review before the test, but I'll make sure the kids know when that is. They've really done well with Geometry, though, so no need to worry too much about it. 

5-1 won the award for the best behavior consistently in Art class last six weeks. That brings us up to two popcorn parties we need to have. 

In Social Studies, we're learning about the American Revolution, starting with the French and Indian War, which laid the foundation for the colonies revolting against the British government. These had to have been exciting times to live--and pretty scary too.