Friday, January 31, 2014

They'd Keep You Alive

Thank you so much to Mrs. Black, Mrs. Hurdle, Mrs. Anderson, and Mrs. Elshire for the part they played in Everybody Counts today. I think the kids at least got a little sense of what it's like to struggle with their everyday work. This program is one of the most meaningful, in my opinion. Also, thank you to former 5-1 parent and Friend of the Classroom--Mrs. Zalam. She was in charge of the program this year, and she did a great job.

This quote is one of the New Classics in my opinion. It relates directly to what we did today:

"The letters float off the page when you read, right? That's because your mind is hard-wired for the ancient Greek," explains a fellow camper, gray-eyed Annabeth. "And the ADHD--you're impulsive, can't sit still in the classroom. That's your battlefield reflexes. In a real fight, they'd keep you alive. As for the attention problems, that's because you see too much, Percy, not too little. Your senses are better than a regular mortal's...Face it. You're a half-blood."

--Rick Riordan, The Lightning Thief

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Saving Grace

First off: No, your children did not lie; they have NO Math homework if they are in my class. I know, this is a rarity, and I promise (heh) not to let that happen too often.

Other than that, here's what the kids do have:
  • Spelling test tomorrow! Study study study...
  • 20 minutes of reading!
  • New York and Pennsylvania in their white pages 40-41 for Social Studies. I told them they would want to have their hardback books with them as well. 
That's about it for now. Tomorrow is Everybody Counts! Thanks to the parents who are coming in to help out with that one. I have told the kids that we are currently putting a real strain on our volunteer force right now, so they are expected to be nice. 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Making Up Is Hard To Do

Well, we're trying our darnedest to get caught up here. We did manage to get through learning about direct objects (review is tomorrow...and the next day, etc.), we got through two reading groups and the rest of the class did really well while I was working with them. They were working independently on either research or word work.

I told the kids that they do NOT have to have their notecards finished by Friday. We are way too behind to be finished by Friday. I will revise the calendar and get it to them by Friday.

In Social Studies we learned about the early colonies and how they were all over here for differing reasons. They were separate colonies for a LONG time before they ever found a need to unite against something else.

One more thing: Math Bowl tryouts are tomorrow now: after school until 4pm. Be prompt in your pick-up times!

Have a wonderful Wednesday.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Last Case Scenario

I'm a little sad. I came home, knowing at that point that Mayor Ballard had shut down the Indianapolis City-County Government for tomorrow, and I should have been under the assumption that Carmel Clay would follow suit. What has me down?

I did not bring home The Genius Files: From Texas With Love to read.

I have to admit that I think I'm as anxious to get to it as the kids are for me to read it aloud. There is something about those books that is like comfort food. They're extremely predictable. The reading follows the same beats and cadence throughout the books. They McDonald family is on one long summer road trip. But the fact is that I haven't even finished the third book; I'm reading it along with the kids this time.

Anyway, here are some ideas if any of my students get too antsy or annoying tomorrow during the big shut-in (not that any of them can ever get annoying...I just don't know how they are at home):
  • Have them write their spelling words three times each. Tell them it's due on Wednesday. 
  • Feel free to tell them that I assigned an hour of reading for tomorrow. Heck, feel free to tell them that I assigned two hours if they get in a fight with their brother or sister. 
  • Sit them down in front of a computer or their research books where they can research their topics and write them down on notecards. If you don't have notecards available, tell them to write it on a piece of paper so that they can transfer the information onto their notecards. 
Hopefully that will buy you a couple hours, at least. Wish I'd had the foresight to send home their green reading books and their Social Studies books plus their white pages. They could have gotten even more real work done.

Have a terrific Tuesday!

I Walk Like You Guide Me

Sorry, folks, we had a staff meeting that just let out, and I have to bolt. Here are some bullet points before I do, though:
  • Math Bowl tryouts are tomorrow after school. Pick-up is at 4pm for Math Bowl tryouts, so make sure and put it on the school widget if your child is going to stay after for that.
  • Picture day for the yearbook has been canceled for Wednesday. Don't bring any extra clothes in for that day, because it--like so much else these days--is being delayed.
  • Yet ANOTHER delay: The stress test for the computer system--of which my class was to have been a part of--is not going to be tomorrow. I think the new date on that one is February 4, the next Tuesday.
  • Last but not least, next Wednesday, February 5, is also Jump Rope for Heart. Should be a fun, and exhausting, time.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Kangaroo Day

Happy Australia Day! I found out via Facebook from my Aussie friends that this is a national holiday in the great Down Under.

Boomerangs, shrimp on the bahbie, Australian rules football, "this is a real knife", and whatever other horrific American stereotypes there are, we wish them all from the 5-1 family to our shrimp-munching friends where the water swirls in the other direction.

Cold Comforts

Far be it for me to complain about a two-hour delay. They're great. But we've had more of those than normal days lately. So I'm going to do my honest best to not send home tons of work tomorrow night to make up for what we're simply not getting finished in class.

We should have specials tomorrow, which means that it will be an early Math day, if everything goes according to what we've done in the past couple weeks.

Hope everyone had a great weekend, and is ready for a full--or, nearly full--week of learning and researching and doing what we do.

From the Woodbrook Chamber of Commerce

I tried to get all of the kids' pictures that day, but a few of them were more elusive than others. They don't sit still at BizTown, that's for sure. A great big 5-1 thank you goes out to Mrs. Anderson, Mrs. Baier, Mrs. Beutler, Mrs. Colvin, Mrs. Hurdle, Mrs. King, and Mrs. Mallon for going with us last Wednesday. As you all know, we would not have been able to pull it off without you there.

Friday, January 24, 2014


Happy Birthday, Mitchel! And even though I never said anything during class, don't think I didn't notice the blue streaks in your hair today. Hope your birthday is legendary.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Achtung, Baby!

HERE are the biggies today:
  • Tomorrow the kids will have a Social Studies test! We went over their study guides in class, but I did not have time to check them myself. Hopefully they made corrections as we went over them. I did have fewer than half of my students with their homework completed today. Out of 25 students, I had only 12 with all of their work complete. This was the study guide and page 38 in their white pages, and it was assigned on Tuesday so that they would have two nights to get it finished. I was happy two or three of my students used their resources and contacted each other to get the information needed to complete the homework. I told the class that, out of respect for those students, I would not accept excuses for not having it finished or not having it with them today. Hopefully this is a "lesson learned" situation. Anyway, TEST TOMORROW. 
  • Tomorrow the kids also need to have at least 60 blank notecards. I will show them how I want them to take notes on their research projects. 
  • My Math class does have two things for tomorrow: the order of operations page and the study link. 

Library News

News from the Woodbrook Media Center
The week of January 27-31, students in grades 4 and 5 will be shown how to access downloadable books for FREE from the Carmel Clay Public Library (CCPL) during their Media special. In the event of a snow delay or cancellation, the session will be rescheduled for a future day.
A CCPL librarian will be onsite for the lesson as CCS media specialists have worked in conjunction with CCPL staff to provide suggestions and topics regarding resources that support curriculum and standards in Carmel. There is an option in Overdrive (used to access the downloadable books) that allows patrons to determine an approximate reading level for the titles listed.
Students can bring the following to be ready for Media the week of January 27-31:
1. CCPL library card if possible – However, students will still learn how to download books without one
a. If your child already has one or can use a parent’s library card, great! Just send the card or the library card number to school with your child.
b. If your child does not already have his/her own card, you can sign up for one. Go directly to CCPL to get a card if you want it in time for the class. Throughout the year, students have been able to pick up applications from Mrs. K. in the Media Center but there isn’t time to obtain a card this way.
2. Personal Communication Device – if your student has one that you want them to bring*
a. List of Devices compatible with the OverDrive system used by CCPL and directions on how to download the app can be found here:
b. The app is not necessary for the lesson, but you may go ahead and download it to the device. The OverDrive app gives access to more downloadable books including audio books. IF you choose to install the Overdrive app, you will be prompted to set up an Adobe ID (you need to use an email and password for use in the checkout process).
*Students who do not bring devices WILL still be able to do the activity on the computers provided. In agreement with CCS Policy #7542 and Woodbrook Elementary policies [See page 21 of the Woodbrook Handbook located here: ] mobile devices, e-readers, etc., can be brought to school if the parent grants permission and the student assumes responsibility. Your child’s teacher may elect to allow mobile devices in their classrooms; however sending a device is at the parent’s discretion.
If you have any questions, please contact Mrs. Kleinschmidt at . Also feel free to stop by or call Carmel Clay Public Library at 844-3363.
Happy Reading,
Mrs. Kleinschmidt
Media Specialist

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Warmest Wishes

Got home late tonight, but while it's still January 22, I want to wish a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Kinsen! I hope that, in addition to having a fantastic day at BizTown and getting to sleep in tomorrow, that your birthday was full of the awesomeness you deserve.

I'll post the pictures ASAP. I don't think they came out very well, but I'll take a look at them and see what was decent enough to post.

Thanks for a great day, everyone.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Night at the Museum: Another Message from the PTO

  • Please join us this WEDNESDAY, January 22 in the Woodbrook
    Elementary Gym for our educational program through the Children’s
    Museum of Indianapolis! !!
    This year we will be exploring The Wonderful World of Water!!!! !!
    The event will be from 6-8pm!!! !!
    Bring the entire family as everyone is welcome! !!
    If you would like to volunteer for this event please go to the sign up genus
    and sign up. !
    Volunteers need to arrive by 5:20 for a quick training session. !!
    Thanks so much and hope to see you there!

Dinner Thursday: A Message From the PTO

  • This Thursday between 5-8 pm Woodbrook Elementary will host our third McTeacher Night, sponsored by the newly rebuilt McDonalds restaurant on Carmel Drive.  Please spread the word that 15% of Woodbrook Sales will benefit PTO programs.  It is important that you mention Woodbrook when you order!! Come and see Mr. Hunter and Mrs. Crouch from 5-6:30!