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New Prague, MN 56071

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Peek At Our Week!

 

Peek At Our Week

Here’s what you need to know for our 2nd grade news...

2-22-18:  

HI!

 
*  Final reminder...yearbooks orders are due tomorrow!  Thanks!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed our mystery guest reader, also known as Mr. Giesen, who popped in and shared a read aloud with us.  
*  We began thinking about nonfiction books.  Our next reader's and writer's workshops will focus on reading and writing nonfiction books.  Today, we kept a quick tally of all of the personal times that we are actually reading nonfiction material.  That could look like:  recipes, manuals, maps, programs, menus, signs, newsletters, magazines, biographies, advertisements, pamphlets, etc.  
*  We enjoyed an online biography of George Washington Carver.  We will continue learning more about him through a written biography tomorrow.  
*  We enjoyed read to self time and took our spelling final.
*  We spent our math workshop focusing on double-digit subtraction.  Yes, we solve this the same way you've learned to solve it.  "If the bigger number is on the bottom in the ones place, we have to borrow."  We shorten that by calling it the "B-B-B".  This is a new, somewhat confusing process at this point of our 2nd grade learning.  You may find it helpful to practice this method with your child at home too.  Extra practice is always appreciated!
 
Enjoy your snowy night!  

2-21-18:  

Hello!

 
*  Please see the following reminder from Jodi Prchal on our school yearbooks:   This is a quick reminder that the deadline for yearbook orders is Friday Feb 23rd. The easiest way to order is online at ybpay.lifetouch.com and enter code 5732018. You can also send at check payable to Falcon Ridge Elementary or cash.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We learned about adverbs today.  Through a little team game, we learned that adverbs tell more about the verb of the sentence.  They tell when, where, and how.  
*  We continued to work on themes of stories.  Your child's SeeSaw folder will show what just right book he/she is reading right now, what the theme is, and why that theme seems fitting.
*  We practiced spelling words.  Tomorrow is the spelling final for -le words.
*  Of course, our read to self time continues to be amazing!  
*  We took a short amount of time to share fiction/fantasy story parts that as authors are most proud of.  We then continued to publish our stories.
*  We used counters to solve division number stories.  Yes, division!  It's so fun to see the excitement here at school when we are accomplishing big work...like 3rd grade math!  
 
Enjoy your night!  

2-20-18:  

Hi!

 
*  Yearbook orders are due on Friday, February 23rd.
*  Scholastic Book orders are also due on Friday.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We began our day with read to self following our morning meeting.  The class just kept reading, and reading, and reading.  When we stopped to look at the time, we had discovered that we read for 65 minutes!  We were so proud of our stamina and teamwork that allowed for this to happen.  Mrs. Luskey was able to confer with about half of our class during this time.  So awesome!
*  We continued to publish our fiction/fantasy stories.   Most students have met with me to revise and edit their work.  Now, the time is necessary to make those pieces of writing into published books.
*  We drew arrays to help us continue solving multiplication number models.  Last Friday, we were able to draw pictures.  We quickly noticed that arrays are a much quicker version of this.  If we are drawing a 3 by 5 array, we draw three rows (usually Xs) and place 5 in each row.  This allows us to count the Xs to correctly solve the multiplication number model.  Perhaps you'd like to check in with your child on how to draw an array or two.  
 
Enjoy your night!  

2-16-18:  

Enjoy the long, three day weekend!  

 
*  Coming home today with your child is our spring fundraiser for Falcon Ridge.  You may recognize this from last year!  It's the Square1Art fundraiser.  Packets of information, along with the drawing page, are coming home.  Please let me know if you have any questions about it!
*  Yearbook orders for FR are due on February 23rd.  
*  Scholastic Book Orders are due on Friday, February 23rd too!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We continue to build our reading stamina.  Today, we read for a total of almost 35 minutes from our book boxes.  Perhaps the extra blankets and stuffed animals helped us to stay snuggled in longer too!  
*  We are continuing to spend time on publishing our books.  Almost all writers have met with me to revise and edit stories.  If your child isn't quite finished, I've asked him/her to bring home our writer's workshop notebook.  Sometimes, the thoughts are there, we just need some help in getting it down on paper.  Thanks for helping us at home if your child's notebook shows up with him/her.  
*  We took some time to look at new spelling words that focus on the spelling pattern of consonants + le.  Spelling final will be on Thursday, February 22nd.
*  We were so excited to begin thinking about multiplication in math today.  To develop this concept, we use drawings of EQUAL groups to count and solve the problem.  The key word for us is equal.  All groups must be the same in order for it to be a multiplication problem.  "Hey Mrs. Luskey, multiplication isn't as scary as I thought it would be."  No, happy to say, it's not!  
 
Enjoy your weekend!  

2-15-18:  

Hi!

 
*  Tomorrow's dress up day is to wear pajamas.  Small stuffed animals and blankets are fine to send along too!   
*  If you have not yet had a chance to sign up for winter conferences, please let me know.  I can get you a date and time blocked!  Thanks!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We wrote, and wrote, and wrote!  Today, with the help of my mom, we were able to meet with most students one on one for revising and editing of fiction stories.  Students who were waiting were working on front and back covers, dedication pages, table of contents, sneak peeks, and all about the author pages.  
*  We also took time for our spelling final and read to self.
*  In math, we created picture graphs that represented the number of eggs different birds have.  With the information on the table and picture graph, we were able to solve short number stories.  We also took a 5-minute fact fluency practice.  These will be coming home tomorrow.  
*  We continued to focus on theme during our read aloud of Friendships According to Humphrey.  The title is a big clue as to what the theme of the story is! 
 
Enjoy your night!  

2-14-18:  

Hi!

 
*  What a fun day!  Thank you so much to the parents that were able to help us out today.  Our party was a blast!  
*  Tomorrow's dress up day is "Dress Like Your Favorite Book Character" day!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We found a fun online learning game from abcya.com that provided a Valentine word search.  (This was as fun addition to our daily reading/writing schedule.)  We also spent time writing our fiction stories, reading with Mrs. Luskey, and practicing our spelling words.  
*  Mrs. Luskey was able to meet with individual writers, although not as many as she'd have like to.  This part of the process takes time, but is so fun to meet with individual writers.  We are so proud of our stories!
*  Valentine fun in the afternoon...we enjoyed many crafts, activities, and Valentine challenges during our party.  We then headed outside for sledding fun in phy.ed.  To end our day, we came back to our classroom and exchanged Valentines.
 
Thanks for a great day!  Enjoy your night!  

2-13-18:  

Hi!

 
Another busy day here!  
*  Kid's choice for tomorrow's lunch is:  hot dog on a bun, corn, carrots, oranges, blueberries, slushy cup, and milk.  
*  Tomorrow's dress up is to wear red/pink.  We will create our Valentine bags tomorrow morning.  However, if your child would like to create a box at home, that is just fine too.  Your child may even wish to bring in items from home to add to his/her bag at school.  Anything really works for this!
*  Our party is also tomorrow from 1-2.  It will be set up carnival style for all of 2nd grade.  Thanks to all of the volunteers helping to make this party possible. This kids are so excited!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We continued to think about how stories can have themes.  We read a short fable titled The Pitcher and the Crow, which also helped us to determine the theme.
*  We worked through our daily rotations of guided reading groups, spelling practice, read to self, and writing time.  (I'm going to meet with as many writers one on one that I can for the remainder of the week.  Your child's reading folder may or may not be coming home due to meeting as writers.
*  We reviewed time on an analog clock today for math.  
 
Outdoor recess and phy.ed. tomorrow!  Thanks for sending winter gear!  Have a great night!  

2-12-18:  

Hi!

 
*  Thanks for sending winter gear for outside recess and outside phy.ed.  We had a blast outside today!  Our next phy.ed. day is on Wednesday!  
*  Tomorrow's dress up day is "Dress up like what you want to be when you grow up" day!  How fun!
*  We will take time to decorate a Valentine bag here at school tomorrow.  However, if your child would prefer to make a box, that can be done at home.  Our party is scheduled for Wednesday from 1-2.  (Carnival style)  Please let me know if you have any questions.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We read aloud the story Rosa and Blanca, which is a story about two sisters that really help each other out on several occasions.  Our reading job after enjoying the story was to think about the theme of the story.  Story themes can be different and more than one.  Themes can be where the main characters show courage, acceptance, kindness, compassion, responsibility , perseverance, friendship, etc.
*  We met in small guided reading groups, practiced spelling words, enjoyed read to self time, and wrote in our Life Books.
*  We met with Ms. Geddes and her class and began the read aloud Honest Abe.  During our time together as readers, we were connecting, inferring, visualizing, and  questioning.  What a proud teacher time!  Students were sharing thoughts and using the correct wording to help all of us understand individual thinking.  
*  We used base-10 blocks to just begin working through subtraction problems that borrow from the next place value.  The base-10 blocks really showed us when to trade from the next place and replace with others.  It was a bit confusing, but with time and effort, we will understand the concept more and more.
 
Have a super night!  

2-9-18:  

Wow!  It was so great to see all of you today that could join us for lunch in the classroom.  Thanks for taking the time to come and have lunch with us!  

 
Please note the following dress-up days for next week.
Monday:  Dress in your favorite sports-themed gear.
Tuesday:  Dress as what you'd like to be when you grow up!
Wednesday:  Wear red or pink.  (Valentine Party at 1:00 for 2nd grade.)
Thursday:  Dress up as your favorite book character.
Friday:  Wear your pjs and be ready to snuggle up with a good book for an all-school read.  
 
What a great day!
*  We took a look at new spelling words.  Lists are coming home today.
*  We had a wonderful time at Mala Strana.  Students paired up with Mala residents to create Valentines that will be sent over to the VA Hospital.  
*  We LOVED lunch in the classroom!
*  We met for math workshop and reviewed counting coins.  We also learned a new card game called "Speed".  Thanks Mrs. Cloutier for helping us with one math rotation.
*  We ended our day by reading with our Kindergarten buddies and finishing up our fantasy read aloud of My Father's Dragon.
 
Have a wonderful weekend!  

2-8-18:  

Hi!

 
*  We hope to see you tomorrow for lunch in our classroom at 12:05.  Reminder to grab a loved picture book from home if you'd like to share a story with your child while you eat.
*  Winter gear needed for phy.ed. next week as all classes will be enjoying time outside if the weather permits.  
*  Please take a moment to sign up for winter conferences if you haven't yet.  If you need help scheduling something, please don't hesitate to contact me.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We began our day by enjoying some Olympic conversation time.  We used our world map to find where the Olympics are taking place, as well as the places that some well-known athletes are from that are competing.  We also used a nonfiction article to guide our discussion on this topic.  
*  We enjoyed read to self time, small guided reading time, spelling final time, and writing opportunities for our fiction/fantasy story.
*  We didn't meet for math rotations, but did enjoy our time with Mrs. Kienow.  Today's lesson focused on manipulating shapes to create other shapes.  We used paper tangrams to practice this.  Your child is coming home with his/her own set of paper tangrams to enjoy!  
*  We ended our day with revising and editing time on our fiction stories.  This part of the writing process takes time.  If only there were 10 more of me to revise and edit!  Our group is patiently waiting to meet one on one with me.  Covers, back covers, table of contents, dedication pages, all about the author page, copyright page, etc. are busily being created while waiting.  
 
Have a wonderful night!  

2-7-18:  

  We got outside for recess today!  Thanks for sending warm winter gear for our outdoor time.  Just a reminder that phy.ed. will be outside next week.  Continue to send that gear!

*  Our Mala Strana visit is Friday (2-9) from 10:30-11:45.  Dress warm for the walk over!
*  Lunch in our classroom is also Friday.  Our lunch time is at 12:05.  Bring a picture book to share while you munch if you'd like!
 
Can you sneak a picture of your child reading at home for me?  Send it my way if they don't spot you taking it.  I'd love to surprise the class with pictures taken at home while "sneaking" in our reading minutes for February "I Love to Read" month.  Thanks!
 
Highlights of our day..
*  We continued to think about cause and effect in a nonfiction article on the color red.  We also noted examples of cause and effect from our just right books at read to self time.  
*  We are beginning the revising and editing of our fiction/fantasy stories.  Our writing has grown so much!  Your child will be meeting with me one on one to revise and edit work to be able to publish his/her story. 
*  We again focused on partial-sums double and triple digit addition in math.  Today was much smoother in our understanding of what the process is and WHY this method helps us to be quicker and more accurate with the mental math part of it.  
 
Enjoy your night!  

2-6-18:  

*  Please see the following note from Mr. Wagner for phy.ed.  Thanks!  (Snow time outside will begin next week.  We are wrapping up our skating this week.)
 
Please make sure that kids have the following:
* Snow Pants
* Winter Jacket
* Hat that covers the ears
* Winter gloves/mittens
* Winter boots (k-2).  3-5 will need to wear specific boots, provided to them, for the skis.  
* Extra Socks
 
The above are mandatory for the kids to come outside with us for PE as we will be outside longer than the duration of recess.  IF kids do not have the above, they will not be cross country skiing (3-5) or sledding (k-2).  We also encourage kids to bring along face masks.
 
As always, we take the safety of the child first.  If it is too cold a day or two, we will have an alternative plan.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We read an amazingly 30 minutes today for read to self.  We continue to focus on cause and effect.  Today, and for the remainder of the week, we will be sharing events in our books that show cause and effect.
*  We worked through our daily time by practicing our spelling words, enjoying some 100 day activities, and writing on this topic.  'If I had $100, but I couldn't keep it and had to give it away to a person or charity, to whom would I give it to?  What would you want that person to do with it?"  Interesting writing!  
*  We continued our 100th day activities in math.  When working in small group with Mrs. Luskey, we again focused on addition and subtraction number stories.  In the other small groups, students worked on lollipop licks (100 times), coin toss (100 times), and plotting on a grid for "Hip Hip Hooray for the 100th day!".  
 
Have a super night!  We are battling the ugly flu bug at home with our kids.  Hope your household is a healthy one!  

2-2-18:  

Next week proves to be a busy week!  Here we go...

*  Pink reading bingo boards are coming home today for your child to sneak in any extra reading minutes for the month of February.  Please let me know if you have any questions regarding this.  Poetry folders are coming home today too so your child can easily complete one of the bingo board items.  Please return the poetry folder back to school when you are finished with it.  Thanks!  
*  Friday, February 9th we will be walking to Mala Strana from 10:45-11:30.  Please ensure that your child has warm clothing for our quick walk over and back.  
*  We are excited to have you for our "Lunch in the Classroom" time on Friday too.  Our lunch time is at 12:05.  Please sign in at the office upon arrival and head down to our classroom to enjoy lunch with us.  Bring your favorite or your child's favorite picture book to read during lunch if you choose.  
*  As we think Valentines, your child can create a box/bag at home for when we trade Valentines with classmates.  I will have bags here at school too if your child wishes to use that for collecting Valentines.  It's really up to what your child prefers.  
*  I won't be at school on Monday, February 5th.  Please note that there won't be a daily email from me that day.  Thanks!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We took time to practice new spelling words.  (long i words)
*  We enjoyed adding new poems and reading/singing aloud different poems from our poetry folders.
*  We "rocked" our time for read to self.
*  We collected data two different times today.  Once at morning meeting and the second time at math.  We had to work together in a large group for the data collection, rather than in our guided math groups.  It was a fun way to end the week.
*  Finally, we ended our day with a kick-off school-wide meeting for "I Love to Read" month.  It's going to be a great month of February here at Falcon Ridge.
 
Have a great weekend!  

2-1-18:  

Hello!

 
*  Your child's February "Camp Read S'more" was to make its way home today.  So sorry!  I forgot to plunk them into mailboxes.  Please watch for this reading filled page to come home tomorrow.  The front side holds a bingo board for reading ideas and the back side lists all of the fun February activities that are planned for FR.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  With the guest teacher, students enjoyed a realistic fiction story titled Dear Juno.  This story reminds us as readers about the importance of remembering and celebrating all cultures and traditions.  
*  Daily rotations were also completed.  They included spelling final, working more with inferencing, and writing our fantasy stories.  We also enjoyed read to self time.
*  In math, with Mrs. Luskey back, we continued plugging along with partial-sums addition.  We are showing more confidence each day with this addition theory.  
 
Enjoy your night!  No outdoor recess today.  

1-31-18:  

Hi!

 
*  Tomorrow morning our class will have a guest teacher.  I will actually be in the building for meetings, and will return to our classroom right before lunch.  I'd much rather spend the morning with my favorite kids!
*  We will continue roller skating in phy.ed. next week too!  Your child may choose to keep his/her helmet in lockers, along with socks, or bring them home and bring all materials back next week.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We discussed point of view and how each person's point of view can affect how we think about things, read things, etc.  We even took a look at a picture that shows a bunny one way and a duck another way.  After our great discussion on point of view, we connected it to our reading lives.  We took a closer nonfiction look at an article on predators and an article on prey animals.  We then compared and contrasted the information we read by using a Venn Diagram.
*  We added one more challenge to our fantasy stories.  We zoomed in on how we can really create our characters by thinking not only about what they say, do, and how they act, but also by the character name we can give them.
*  We worked with number stories today in math.  We used highlighters to show the important information in the number story.  We also use quantity-quantity-difference boxes to keep our numbers in order to solve the number story correctly.
 
Enjoy your night!  

 

1-30-18:  

*  Extra long socks/helmets are needed for phy.ed. tomorrow.

*  In flipping the calendar, there are so many activities coming up for the month of February.  Your child's February calendar will be coming home tomorrow.  Please use it as a guide to all that is taking place, especially our Mala Strana visit, lunch in the classroom, and dress up days for "I Love to Read" month.  Thanks!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We've had so many opportunities pop up in our small guided reading groups to continue making inferences from our books.  It's so wonderful to hear readers use the words "I infer" but also to base inferences off of background knowledge and clues from the author.  SO.  COOL.
*  We met for Writer's workshop today.  Our fiction stories are taking shape.  The challenge today was to use as many, if not all, of the challenges presented to show up somewhere in our stories.  Challenges include:  adding onomatopoeias, quotation marks with characters speaking to one another, similes, a strong beginning, middle, end, strong character traits, and a hook to lure our readers in.  
*  We continued working through double-digit and even triple-digit addition problems by using the partial-sums method.  Today's additional practice helped to make us feel a bit more secure with this method.  We will keep working!  
 
Enjoy your night!  

1-29-18:  

A few reminders for you...

*  Please send socks/helmets for phyed. on Wednesday.  
*  We will be walking over to Mala strana on Feb. 9th at 10:45-11:30.  Please dress your child accordingly for the walk over.  
*  Lunch in our classroom will also be on February 9th at 12:05.  We hope that you can join us.  We will be enjoying "I love to read" month in February.  If your child has a favorite picture book that you'd like to bring along to share during our lunch time, please feel free to bring it!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We practiced our inferencing skills by enjoying a quick clip from a movie.  We used the movie clues and our own background knowledge to make inferences.  We then connected this strategy to our reading lives. We continued this skill during our small guided reading groups too.
*  We were faced with a new writing challenge today.  Our challenge is to add onomatopoeias to our writing.  Onomatopoeias are words that imitate the sounds that they make.  (Crack!  Ka-Choo! Boom!)  
*  We continued to focus on ballpark estimates and solving double-digit addition problems by partial-sums.  For this procedure, we add the 10s together.  We then add the 1s together.  Finally, we add the 10s and 1s together.  Thanks to Mrs. Cloutier for joining our group today to play a new math game too!  
 
Have a super night!  

1-26-18:  

*  Reminder that next week for phy.ed., your child will be roller skating in P.E.  He or she will need:

  • TWO pairs of LONG socks (for blister prevention)
  • To know his or her shoe size
  • A helmet (if available)
  • Pads (if available)

 

Highlights of our day...

*  We enjoyed easing into this Friday by reading aloud a fiction picture book to our Kindergarten buddy.  We guided our buddies through a beginning, middle, and end lesson that really taught us patience, guidance, and understanding.  It was wonderful to watch 2nd graders "teach" the lesson.  I heard key phrases like, "What is the problem in the story?  Who were the characters?  Where was the setting?  How was the problem solved?" 

*  We continued to think like readers and writers by again discussing how dialogue plays a powerful role in story telling.  Does my fiction story have dialogue?  If not, where can I put dialogue in?  The comic strip fun helped us to practice adding dialogue to an illustrated piece.  Your child added his/her comic strip to SeeSaw.

*  We built our fluency by working on a short nonfiction passage with Mrs. Luskey today during guided reading groups.  We also practiced a new set of spelling words (compound words) and enjoyed writing time.  

*  We ended unit 5 that focused on geometry.  We enjoyed using miras and pattern blocks to show lines of symmetry.  

 

Have a wonderful weekend!  

1-25-18:  

*  Join FR family and friends for Family Fun Night tonight from 5-7.  

 
Highlights of our day...
*  We read amazingly for read to self today!  Mrs. Luskey was able to confer with individual readers.  We continue to focus on choosing just right books for our book boxes.  We can tell if the book we have chosen is a good fit for us by using the five finger rule.  We constantly use this as a guide because we don't want to spend so much effort figuring out the words that we have lost the meaning of the story. 
*  We enjoyed working with new groups during daily time.  During our daily rotations we met with Mrs. Luskey to continue working with beginning, middle, and end of a story.  We also practiced our fiction picture books to be ready for our time with our Kindergarten buddies tomorrow to work through the beginning, middle, and end of these stories.  We wrote and took our spelling final on words too.
*  We met for Writer's Workshop to continue to add more depth to our fiction stories.  We were challenged yesterday to see where we could add dialogue to our characters.  Today, we focused on how we can tell and show time passing through our story.
*  We had a divergent thinking lesson with Mrs. Kienow during our math workshop.  Your child will be coming home with his/her paper that focused on taking an item and changing it, adding to it, eliminating something from it, rearranging parts, etc. to make it something of a different use.  This was tricky, but so much fun to see the creativity!  I'm hoping your child will share more with you at home tonight regarding his/her creation!
 
Have a wonderful night!  

1-24-18:  

Notes to pass along to you...
*  Please join us at Falcon Ridge for Family Fun Night on Thursday, January 25th from 5-7.  
*  Helmets, socks, and guards/pads can be brought in for our skating during phy.ed. beginning next week.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We have a new set of books on our online reading of Raz Kids due to our continued growth in reading.  Today, we took a look at one of the books in our new set and really gave it time by having it read aloud, reading it again on our own, and checking in on comprehension of that story.
*  We wrapped up our adjective practice by playing Apples to Apples and enjoying more Mad Libs.  We won't complete the Mad Libs here at school, but feel free to finish them at home with your child if you'd like.
*  We noted the power that speaking characters can have in a story.  We enjoyed the story Double Trouble in Walla Walla.  This story uses a great amount of dialogue that tends to be very entertaining.  We zoomed in on our own read to self books to note all of the times the author has characters speaking to one another in the story.  Our writing challenge is to add more dialogue in our fiction/fantasy story.
*  We found our perfect fiction books to share with our Kindergarten buddies on Friday to guide them in a mini-lesson of beginning, middle, and end of the story.  Perhaps you'd like to check in with your child on what story he/she chose.  
*  We continued to think about symmetry of shapes.  We also enjoyed a new math game called 10-pin limbo, drew our 3D robots, and met with Mrs. Luskey in small group to work on a math box page.  Math boxes review concepts that continue to pop up in our math work.  
 
Have a wonderful night!  

1-23-18:  

Hi!

 
*  Today is Day 5 on our school calendar.  Please have your child adjust his/her classroom January calendar if he/she keeps track of our five day rotation.
*  Please see the following note from our phy.ed. teacher, Mr. Wagner:  
Roller skating in phy.ed begins next week.  Please have your students/children bring their own helmets if they have one as this is the safest option.  If they do not have or bring a helmet, we have several that they can and will use.  KIDS ARE NOT ALLOWED TO SKATE WITHOUT A HELMET!  We are also asking that our students bring or wear longer socks to help prevent blistering.  Mid shin is tall enough.  Students may also bring their own knee and elbow pads as well as wrist guards.  Again, if they do not have them, we have enough for all students.  We ask that students DO NOT bring their own skates or roller blades.  We want the kids to use the ones provided by the school/district.  Thank you!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We saw the power of adding adjectives to simple sentences.  Our simple sentences quickly turned into complex sentences with the help of adjectives.
*  We are really enjoying our geometry unit.  Today we were creating 3D robots and drawing shapes and their lines of symmetry.  
 
Short day, but a great one!  Thanks for sending winter gear for outside recess each day!  Enjoy your night!  

1-19-18:  

Hello!

 
*  Thank you for your patience with me as I took time to meet with each student as a reader.  I feel so proud of each student and the reading progress he/she has made at this point in our year.  Next week we will resume our reading time together with new books.  I'm excited to meet with groups of readers again!
*  Your child is coming home with his/her special delivery folder.  Inside, you will find your child's progress report and work assessed based on standards.  I also had a cute little note that I'm waiting on delivery from the copy center.  So, the gist of the note is this...Your child's daily work that I see is so much more important than the "score/grade" that needs to be placed on the progress report.  You may know that we focus our entire teaching curriculum on Minnesota standards.  However, our report card doesn't reflect that...yet!  Next year, our report card will be marking students based on standards.  It's a year of crafting the report card, meeting to ensure it's quality, and time to process how reporting the information to parents will occur.  This year, you will see the report that tends to be a little more general.  If you have any questions regarding your child's progress report, please let me know!  Thanks!

Highlights of our day...
*  We amazingly read for 35 minutes today.  We tested our stamina by reading in our favorite read to self spots.  At the last 10 minutes of reading, we all moved to our desk spots.  In our desks, everyone was so focused and on-task!  It showed us that perhaps our new read to self spots will be at our desks!  Students were begging to continue reading!  I love it!
*  We practiced a new list of spelling words that focus on long o sounds.  Final will be next Thursday!
*  We had a morning of adjective practice by using Apples to Apples and MadLibs.  We also really focused on one story for RazKids to show Mrs. Luskey how well we comprehended  it.  That way ranges and book levels can be altered accordingly!  
*  We got to draw today for math!  We loved every minutes of it!  We practiced drawing three-dimensional shapes and then took those shapes and had to create a robot.  (One of our stories for read aloud has a robot!)  Our robot must include a cube, rectangular prism, sphere, and a cone.  Other 3D shapes can be included too! 
 
Enjoy your weekend!  Let's go Vikes!  

1-18-18:  

Hello!

 
*  Tomorrow is purple and gold/Viking's gear if your child is interested.
*  If you are able to attend/help at our Valentine party, please let Mrs. Luskey know. 
*  Join us for lunch in the classroom on Friday, February 9th at 12:05.  Thanks!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed the story Pearl and Wagner.  We compared a story being told to a roller coaster.  The story begins by introducing the characters and the setting.  We then build into the middle part of the story, where the problem occurs.  As we descend the hill of a roller coaster, the end part of the book helps readers to know the solution.  We pulled apart the story by thinking about not retelling every detail to the story, but rather telling important parts of the beginning, middle, and end.  We are on the look out for a great picture book that we can do this same activity with for our Kindergarten buddies.  If your child has a favorite fiction picture book, please send it to school with him/her.  Thanks!
*  Our challenge for writer's workshop today was to add a similie to our writing.  Similies use the words like or as to compare two things.  We know that authors use similies in writing to show, rather than just tell.  What similie did your child add to his/her writing today?
*  We are moving from 2D shapes into 3D shapes.  We are naming the shapes cylinders, cones, rectangular prisms, spheres, and cubes.  We are also working at counting the edges, vertices, and faces of these 3D shapes.
 
Enjoy your night!  Your kids are wonderful!  

1-17-18:  

Hi!

 
*  Tomorrow (1-18) will be our spelling final for our long e words.
*  Friday will once again be purple and gold/Viking's gear if your child is interested.
*  Please see the flyer coming home today regarding FR Family Fun Night on January 25th.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We had a great time using your child's adjectives to guess his/her mystery item.  Thanks for your help with this activity at home!  
*  We reviewed what our read to self expectations are for ourselves and our classmates.  The reminders and our continued focus on our reading stamina helped us to stay locked into our books for 30 minutes.  Wow!
*  We discussed the three reasons authors write what they write.  Check your child's SeeSaw folders for a book that your child is working on and why the author wrote it!
*  We met for Writer's Workshop where we continue to build our fantasy/fiction story.  Today's focus was to really build a strong character by showing some of his/her actions, words used, etc.  We also discussed that being descriptive in what your character looks like on the outside can also help to build him/her.  
*  We create precise line segments with straightedges to show different types of two-dimensional shapes.  Tomorrow, we will move into 3-dimensional shapes.  
 
It was great to be outside today for recess!  Please help to make sure your child has the proper gear, especially winter boots.  Thanks!
Enjoy your night!  

1-16-18:  

HI!

 
*  Tomorrow's lunch is walking taco with all of the fixings!  
*  We also hope to be able to play outside for recess tomorrow as we didn't get outside today!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We had an amazing discussion today during morning meeting on our knowledge of who Martin Luther King Jr. was and what he stood for.  We also shared a short reader about him.  This gave us more insight into his life and brought up some very well-thought out questions for discussion.
*  We used PebbleGo to choose another civil rights leader to learn more about.  Your child chose a leader of interest to him/her and then completed a graphic organizer to highlight three important facts learned about him/her.
*  Your child has some "homework" tonight to find a secret item.  We chatted that this item must not be valuable or breakable!  Then, your child is asked to list as many adjectives as possible to describe the item.  Your help may be necessary for creating a list!  We will then use the adjectives to try and determine what the mystery item is.
*  We were working very hard during our reading FAST test!  Again, I'm so impressed with everyone!  What hard workers!
*  We continue to discover new concepts and terms in our math geometry unit.  We can draw and name polygons based on the number of sides and angles they have.  (pentagon=5, hexagon=6, heptagon=7, octagon=8, nonagon=9, and decagon=10)  Can your child name these polygons based on the number of sides?  Can your child try drawing them too?
*  We enjoyed the story The Greedy Triangle that showed how shapes can change depending on the number of sides they have.  (Close connection to our math lesson for today.)
 
We hope to play outside for recess tomorrow!  Thanks for sending winter gear!
Enjoy your night!  

1-12-18:  

Hi!

 
*  Just a reminder that there is no school on Monday, January 15th.  Enjoy the day!
*  We will be ready for reading FAST testing on Tuesday, January 16th at 11:00.
*  Kid's choice for Wednesday, January 17th is a walking taco with all of the fixings.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We took time to practice a new list of spelling words.  Spelling final is Thursday, January 18th.  Our words focus on the long e sound by the letters ee, ea, and y.
*  We reviewed the different purposes that authors have for writing.  Our weekly challenge also focused on this reading skill.
*  We enjoyed book box time.  We continue to connect, question, and visualize as readers.  I'm so impressed!
*  I had to leave for the afternoon, but Ms. Nickolai was with our group.  Students worked on line segments, geoboard patterns, and a 5 minute timing.  
 
Enjoy your weekend!  

1-11-18:  

Hi!

 
*  Tomorrow is purple and gold day at school if your child is interested.
*  Our word/action that we are focusing on school wide for January is tolerance.  We will really begin discussing this word more next week.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  Snow!
*  Mrs. Luskey was able to meet with many readers this morning one-on-one due to our guest teacher.  Your child took his/her spelling final, enjoyed book box time, read and discussed Martin Luther King Jr. from a Scholastic News, and enjoyed reading aloud the story The True Story of The Three Little Pigs.  (After the class discussed the The Three Little Pigs, it was interesting to see how point of view can really change a story.  Your child created a chart of what was alike in both stories and what was different in them.) 
*  We had Mrs. Kienow join us at 1:00 for more work on divergent thinking.  We created personal stories by adding more descriptive words.  Watch your child's See Saw folders for these stories to be added tomorrow and into next week.
*  No outdoor recess, but we were lucky to have phy.ed. 
 
Have a wonderful night!  

1-10-18:  

Hello!

 
It was nice to have a "normal" day with our schedule!  Tomorrow will be back to a goofy one!  I will be here in the building, but a guest teacher will be working with our class.  My morning will be spent having time to assess students individually in reading.  My time out of the classroom will be from 9:00-11:45.  I'm thankful to have the time to assess, but will enjoy being back in the classroom together with my crew after 11:45!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We were beaming with pride today when I shared all of the highlights that I noticed during FAST testing yesterday.  I saw hard working students, taking amazing effort in their questions and answers, and being so respectful when completing tests so that others could do their very best.  Everyone earned a Trojan Ticket today!
*  We worked amazingly hard and respectful so Mrs. Luskey could read individually with a few readers.  We enjoyed reading with a partner, practicing our spelling words, and writing star student letters.  
*  We pulled out each book within our book box and determined the purpose(s) the author had for writing the book.  We know that authors can write to persuade (get us to do something), inform (teach us new information) or entertain (for fun).  You will notice a page coming home today where your child had to place his/her books in the category that seemed correct for the author's purpose.  It's as easy as PIE!  
*  We finished up the story Blue and Peach and took time to "transform" our thinking.  What part(s) of the story "stuck" with us?  
*  We continued to use straightedges to create quadrangles in math.  We also added to our subtraction flash card stack.  The pile is getting larger!  Finally, we used "open number lines" to solve double-digit addition problems.  We had a little bit of everything today!
 
Thanks for sending winter gear for recess tomorrow!  Enjoy your night!  
 

1-9-18:  

Hi!  What a full day!  We had so much going on, but each person handled the schedule wonderfully!  Please thank your child for me!

 
News to know:
*  Kid's Choice for lunch on Wednesday, January 17th is walking taco with lettuce, tomato, salsa, and sour cream, strawberries, kiwi, Johnny Pop, and milk
*  Our reading FAST test is scheduled for Tuesday, January 16th at 11:00.
 
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We had amazing stamina during our read to self time today.  We also searched our stories for new words.  While reading, if we came across a new word or two, we jotted those words down.  We then explored dictionaries by searching for the meaning of our new words.  This was a challenge, but a fun one!
*  We finished up some loose ends:  writing to our pen pals, practicing our words, and enjoying new books with a partner.  (I pulled out some new, gigantic books!  They were a hit!)
*  We had a full afternoon with FAST testing.  We also had our personal safety speaker.  Her thoughts that she left us with were:  "Stop.  Go.. Tell."  She also reminded us to think about our trusted adults that we can talk to when we need.  Finally, she shared that we can ask ourselves two questions when we are unsure of a touch, "Is the person my helper?  Is it a secret?"  Please let me know if you have any questions about our speaker.  Thanks!  
 
Have a super night!  

1-8-18:  

It was a beautiful day for outside recess.  Thanks for continuing to send all winter gear with your child.  Boots are helpful too as then our carpet doesn't get wet in the afternoon from wet shoes.  

 
*  Tomorrow is our personal safety talk from a guest speaker.  Our talk time is scheduled for 2:50-3:35.  You may wish to have a follow-up conversation with your child regarding the content discussed.  
*  We will also complete our first part of FAST testing tomorrow afternoon at 1:00 in math.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We seem to have a good understanding on verbs and tenses.  We practiced for just a bit on past, present, and future tenses to continue our learning from last week.
*  We finished up our play read aloud titled The Bremen Town Musicians.  We had to complete a thinking sheet to determine the central message/lesson from the folktale.
*  We are continuing to work on our fiction stories for Writer's Workshop.  Today we discussed how adding a hook to your writing will help to draw your reader in.  Ask your child if he/she added a hook to his/her fiction story.  You may also want to continue the discussion to check in on characters, settings, the problem, and the solution.  Sometimes talking about the stories we have in our minds really helps to get it down on paper.  Thanks!
*  We are continuing on our geometry journey.  We added the terms parallel and quadrangles to our vocabulary.  See if your child can show you what parallel lines look like and what they don't look like.  Can your child explain to you what a quadrangle is and give you some examples of them?  (Quad=4:  square, rectangle, rhombus, kite, parallelogram, trapezoid)
*  We discussed how readers can "sneak" in reading minutes throughout the day.  I shared that I often throw a book in my purse and read when I'm waiting somewhere.  That's my way of sneaking in my minutes for reading.  We took a few minutes to sneak in some minutes with Ms. Geddes and her class to end our day! 
 
Enjoy your night!  

1-5-18:  

Hello!  Happy Friday!

 
*  We are missing a pink cupcake Squishy toy!  If you happen to stumble upon one at home, thanks for returning it to school so we can get it to the correct owner.  
*  Thanks for all of your help in locating an Apples to Apples game!  We've got a couple for next week's activity!
*  January tends to be a big month for assessments.  Our FAST testing is scheduled for January 9th at 1:00 for math and January 16th at 11:00 for reading.  During this month, each teacher is asked to reassess for reading (F and P) like we did in preschool assessments.  This takes an extensive amount of time, yet the data collected is helpful and important.  I try to "sneak" in assessing when it fits to keep our classroom schedule running.  With this being said, your child's reading folder may not be coming home as frequently as I'd like it to.  Please note that I'm working individually with readers.  Thanks so much for understanding!  
*  Please see the special note coming home today regarding a guest speaker coming to our classroom next Tuesday, January 9th.  
 
Highlights of our day..
*  We enjoyed an informational text titled Slide and Slurp, Scratch and Burp to continue our learning on verbs.  We also took our verb understanding a bit further by thinking about past tense, present tense, and future tense of verbs.  We did a sorting activity to guide us in our learning on this.
*  We enjoyed some publishing time today by using our Chromebooks, Google Docs, and a whole lot of patience!  We worked with amazing effort to create an invitation just for you!  Please check your child's folder to find out what that invitation is!
*  We began reading a fairy tale written as a play titled The Bremen Town Musicians.  We know it fits under the folktale "umbrella" because it has talking animals and the tale is written with a central message/lesson.
*  We enjoyed the beginning of our new math unit which focuses on geometry.  We learned three new terms today:  endpoints, line segment, and straight edge.  We use a straight edge/ruler to create very precise line segments.  We had to follow a code of endpoint names to create different shapes.  We also added more flash cards to our stacks for practice! 
 
We didn't get outside today!  Fingers crossed that next week allows for us to have more outdoor recess time.  Have a wonderful weekend!  

1-4-18:  

Hi!

*  Does anyone happen to have the game Apples to Apples that we could borrow for next week?  We will be working with adjectives and I'd like to use this game for guiding us in our learning.  Please let me know if you do!  Thanks!
*  Lunch in the classroom is on Friday, February 9th at 12:05.  Join us if you can!
*  We've also been invited back to Mala Strana on February 9th from 10:45-11:30.  Dress for the walk over!  
*  FAST testing is again upon us.  Our dates and times are January 9th at 1:00 for Math and January 16th at 11:00 for Reading.  Please let me know if you have any questions regarding our winter assessments.  Thanks!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed reading a letter from a new pen pal.  We will be writing to a 2nd grade class from TCU.  It was exciting to write to someone who is brand new to us and ask questions so learn more about him/her.
*  We met in small guided reading groups, worked on our pen pal letters, practiced reading with Raz Kids, and worked on our spelling words.
*  We wrapped up Unit 4 in math by Mrs. Luskey checking in on math box pages and guiding in any areas that needed a bit more attention for each math learner.  We also added more subtraction flash  cards to our stack.  We could practice those flash cards with a buddy playing rapid fire or Chutes and Ladders.
*  We also played a class game of Kings on the Corner for our morning meeting activity!  We LOVED it!  Perhaps you can sneak a game or two in at home!  
 
We got outside today, but it was pretty chilly!  Thanks for seeing that your child has all appropriate outside gear each day!  
Enjoy your night!  

1-3-18:  

 Please note that the new snack cart order forms are due January 11th and the start date is January 16th.  

*  Lunch in the classroom on Friday, February 9th at 12:05!  Please mark your calendars! 
*  New spelling list is coming home today!  Spelling final will be on Thursday, January 11th.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We spent time thinking about ourselves as learners that face new challenges.  With a growth mindset, we practiced different ways to respond to new challenges.  Your child is coming home with an "instead of saying, try saying________" page that provided conversation about quick ways that we can have a growth mindset in whatever we are working on.
*  We met in small guided reading groups, worked on a new list of spelling words, and enjoyed a Scholastic News.  
*  We are continuing to add to our subtraction flash cards.  Your child will be bringing them home each night.  Practice/use how you'd like!  Thanks for returning them to school each day so we can continue to add more cards to the stack!
*  We practiced ballpark estimates, adding double digit numbers, and solving number stories for math.   
 
Day 2 of indoor recess!  Yikes!  We had an amazing day despite not getting outside for some fresh air!  Maybe tomorrow?  
Enjoy your night!  

1-2-18:  

Hi!  
 

*  We are excited to invite you to our class for lunch in the classroom on Feb. 9th.  Our lunch time is at 12:05!  Join us if you can for lunch and conversation with your child!  

*  Spelling final will be next Thursday, January 11th for our new list of words that we will pretest on tomorrow.  
*  If your child took time over break to work on the "Winter Reading" bingo board, please have him/her return it to school.  Thanks!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We took time this morning to closely examine the books that we have in our books boxes.  We "shopped" for new books and kept the books that will continue to push our reading brains.  We also discussed that readers have a reading plan.  We even put the books in order within our book boxes to show what our reading plan/order is for the books that we are wanting to read.  Our read to self time was amazing today!  30 minutes!  Wow!  
*  We were excited to read new books in our reading groups for guided reading time with Mrs. Luskey.
*  We discussed resolutions/goals for our 2nd grade year in 2018.  Ask your child what he/she is setting for new learning goals for the new year.  Happy New Year!
*  We began thinking about elapsed time in math.  We used analog clocks to determine a new time by noting an elapsed amount of time that passed.
 
Day 1 of indoor recess!  Your child may need to move a bit more tonight!  Have a great night!  

12-21-17:  

*  Please see the new snack cart order forms that are coming home today with your child.  They are due back to school by Jan. 11 and the start date is January 16th.  

* January calendars are coming home soon.  School resumes on January 2nd.  (Day 2-Media)
*  Math game binders are coming home today!  If you find yourself looking for something to do over winter break, your child may enjoy teaching you a game or two from our binders.  Thanks for seeing that binders are returned to school on January 2nd.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed our morning together by reading December books with a partner, creating "elf grams" for friends, and reading from a our new books The Winter According to Humphrey.  
*  We were on a secret mission today to do kind deeds for a classmate.  We had to do those kind deeds in a sneaky sort of way.  At the end of the day, we had our reveal as to who was doing kind deeds for who.  We also shared some character traits/adjectives that describe the person that we were helping out today.  
*  We enjoyed our "party" by playing board games, sipping on hot chocolate, and sucking on candy canes.
 
May your holiday be filled with family and friends!  May your winter break by full of fun and cheer!  I adore your children and value each day with them.  Thanks for all of your support here at school!  See you in 2018!  

12-20-17: 

*  Holiday gear wear for tomorrow if your child is interested.
*  Reindeer game time will be tomorrow! If your child is interested in bringing a board game, please send it to school tomorrow.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed a Zoomobile presentation from the Minnesota Zoo.
*  We read with amazing stamina today during read to self time.  Mrs. Luskey was able to confer individually with readers.
*  We continued to create questions from the story The Lotus Seed.  After finishing the book, we learned about the reason this story was written was to teach us a bit about the families that left Vietnam during the war.  
*  We worked through double-digit addition problems by finding the ballpark estimate first, and then solving the problems by using the partial-sums algorithm.  
*  We learned about the holiday customs for the countries of Italy, Sweden, and England.
*  We enjoyed the story La Bafana, which helped us to learn even more about the Italian holiday custom.  
 
Have a wonderful night!   

12-19-17:  

Hi!

 
*  Christmas PJ Day tomorrow if your child is interested!  
*  Blended learning sheets have been added to a plastic sleeve and are now in your child's binder.  Reminder:  This would only be something to guide your child's learning for our 2nd snow day from school.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We began the day by enjoying a singing quartet in the main gym.  The high school girls that performed for our school sang so lovely!
*  We continued to tune into new words in our books during read to self time.  To close our reading time, we shared a new word or two that we came across in our reading.  This was a great opportunity to learn from others in our class what the meaning of different words are.
*  We learned about different holiday customs for Germany and Mexico.
*  We met for Writer's Workshop and continued to build upon our characters and settings in our realistic fiction/fantasy stories.  
*  We continued to work on ballpark estimates in math.  
*  We enjoyed the 5th grade production of Sir Bookworm in Mrs. O'Link's class.  
 
Enjoy your night!  Remember to send your child's favorite board game for Thursday if your child is interested!  

12-18-17:  

Hi!

*  No spelling this week!  
*  Tomorrow's dress up day is sparkle or shiny day if your child is interested!
*  Your child will be coming home with a new item in the back of his/her planner.  Each grade was asked to plan a "blended learning" day should we have a snow day from school.  The first day off of school due to snow is a "no work required" type of day.  If we should have a second day off of school, your child is asked to take a look at our 2nd grade "Snow Day Activities" pages in the back of his/her binder.  It is not something that is required, yet may be helpful to keep your child working on a day that we aren't at school.  Please let me or Mr. Giesen know should you have any questions.  (The activities are also found on our classroom webpage.)  
 

School Closings and Blended Learning

 

Dear Parents and Guardians,

 

As winter approaches, we must think about inclement weather and the potential for school closings. We all have childhood memories of snow days, building forts, sledding, and drinking hot cocoa after shoveling. There is value in these experiences, but snow days can add up quickly and learning opportunities can be lost. For this reason, Falcon Ridge Elementary, along with all schools in the district, will use Blended Learning in the event of school closings. Here are some important points about our Blended Learning Days:

 
  1. The first school day cancelled will remain a “traditional” snow day. Assignments will not be given.

  2. The second and following school days cancelled will include “Blended Learning” where students complete lessons at home.

  3. Lessons may have a “blend” of online or traditional paper/pencil activities. Online activities may be available as a choice or option, but not as a requirement.

  4. Blended Learning provides continuous and meaningful learning opportunities. Students will not have to make up any snow days in the Spring.

  5. Teachers will include Blended Learning activity sheets in students’ folders, passports, or planners. Links to the activity sheets will also be available on your teacher’s website.

  6. Teachers can be reached via their school email between the hours of 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.

Our mission at New Prague Area Schools is, “To engage and support everyone in high levels of learning.” Our vision is, “To be a premier school district that models excellence and embraces the challenges of the 21st Century.” If we hold true to these statements, we must create innovative solutions to promote student learning. We are excited for the opportunities Blended Learning Days will provide for our students.

 

Sincerely,

 

David Giesen, Principal

 

Falcon Ridge Elementary School

 
Highlights of our day...
*  We continued to focus on asking questions as readers.  We know there are thin questions that can be asked (often have one word answers and can be found within the story) and thick questions (go beyond the text).  We also practiced asking questions as readers from the story The Lotus Seed.  
*  "You're a mean one, Mr. Grinch!"  We read through a reader's theater together as a class that retold the Grinch story.
*  We enjoyed read to self time, writing time, and guided reading groups.
*  We used drawings in math to help us add two and three-digit numbers together.  By adding the hundreds, tens, and ones places together, we are able to find the sum of the answer in our beginning stages of solving.  This method is called the "partial-sums" method.  (Ex. 23 + 16 = 20 + 10 and 3 + 6:  "Add the tens, add the ones, add the tens and ones together."
 
Enjoy your night!  

12-15-17:  

Hello!

*  We had a wonderful time at Mala Strana today!  I am so proud of the kindness and respect that everyone showed to the residents today.  My mom was able to join us too, and she had constant tears in her eyes when watching our friendly game of balloon volleyball.  She later told me how touched she was at the kindness everyone was showing.  So wonderful!
*  From Mr. Giesen:  "Thanks to all students and families who helped to donate to this week’s hat/mitten drive. With the help of Tessa Johnson and Autumn Olson, 772 pairs of mittens and hats were collected and will be donated to families in need. Great work Falcon Ridge!"
*  No spelling until after break!  
*  Monday is "Grinch Day" if your child wishes to participate!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed a bit of read to self time.
*  We loved our time at Mala Strana.
*  We wrapped up our holiday projects.  Your child may be coming home with his/hers today.  
*  We finished up a few items in math today.  We completed number patterns work, a bar graph from a tally chart, and finished up a "shopping" challenge problem that we had to pause on from Wednesday.  
 
Enjoy your weekend!  

12-14-17:  

Hi!

*  Just another reminder that tomorrow is our walk over to Mala Strana.  We are so excited as we chatted about it at morning meeting today.  Our leave time from school will be around 10:30.  We will return to school around 11:30.  
*  We won't have spelling tomorrow and into next week!  It will be a nice little break!
*  Trojan Pride day for dress-up day tomorrow if your child is interested!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We finished up our daily folktales that were written to teach us a lesson or two.  Today, your child added his/her favorite folktale to his/her Seesaw folder.  After reading the folktale and the moral, it was our job to take the moral a step further and connect it to our personal lives.  
*  We enjoyed small guided reading groups, online book time through Epic, writing time, and spelling time.  
*  We are using a graphic organizer to work through the drafting stages of our realistic fiction/fantasy story for Writer's Workshop.  Today's focus was to really think about the traits that we want our main characters to have.  We also brainstormed what our problem will be in the our stories, as well as what we could have for the solutions.
*  We continued to work with rounding numbers to the nearest tens.  We then took two-digit numbers and added them together.  Before we do the actual calculating, we find the ballpark estimate of these two numbers added together.  Ex. 27 + 31 for the ballpark estimate is 30 + 30.  We know then that when we actually solve the problem, our answer should be pretty close to 60, otherwise we may have made an error in calculating.
*  We ended our day with a discussion on how on-task during work time looks different than off-task.  It may be a good night to check in with your child regarding how independent work time is going!  Little reminders from Mrs. Luskey to stay focused or many reminders from Mrs. Luskey to stay focused?  Thanks for your help!  
 
Have a super night!  

12-13-17:  

Hi!

*  Tomorrow's dress up day is throw-back Thursday.  Yikes!
*  Spelling tomorrow!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We continued our morning meeting greeting of "Would you rather".
*  We enjoyed a book titled To Root, to Toot, to Parachute:What is a verb?  This book helped to lead us in a five-minute table activity.  Each table worked together to list as many action/being verbs as they could think of.  So much fun to watch!
*  We continued our discussion in Reader's Workshop about questioning ourselves and authors during our reading.
*  We met in small guided reading groups, continued our writing project, practiced our spelling words, and enjoyed reading a book with a reading buddy.
*  We continue to work on estimation in math.  We are beginning to use the phrase, "If the number in the ones place is 4 or below, we let it go to the tens that it is at.  If the number in the ones place is 5 or above, we give it a shove up to the next ten."  We continued to think of ourselves as shoppers and estimated amounts for "purchasing" different items. 
 
Have a super night!  

12-12-17:  

HI!

*  Reminder that we will be enjoying time at Mala Strana this Friday from 10:45-11:30.  We will be walking over and back!  Hats and gloves will be extra helpful for Friday!
*  Tomorrow's dress up day is red and green if your child is interested.
 
HIghlights of our day...
*  We had an amazing discussion at morning meeting from our message board question, "What does integrity mean to you?".  We had great personal stories to share about how we showed what integrity means.  
*  We also played a "Would you rather..." for our morning meeting greeting.  So much fun!
*  We continued to work with amazing effort on a writing project.  We also continue to grow our reading stamina in our read to self time.  
*  We took a folktale that we read yesterday a bit further today by completing a graphic organizer on the beginning, middle, and end of the story.  We then had to think about the central message/lesson of the folktale and how we can apply that lesson to our own lives.
*  We enjoyed an amazing book titled If... that introduced us to the reading strategy of questioning.  We had to complete the if thought with a question.  Not only did this activity remind us of question words, but it also allowed us talking time to be super creative with our questions.  (Ex.If caterpillars were toothpaste....)
*  We began the journey of estimation today for math.  We thought of ourselves as shoppers and had to round an amount to the nearest ten.  We relied heavily on our number grids for this first day of practice.
 
Enjoy your night!  

12-11-17:  

Hello!

*  Please see the note coming home today regarding a hat and mitten drive here at Falcon Ridge.  
*  Tomorrow's dress up day is plaid day!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We are continuing to focus on verbs that show action.  For morning meeting today, we enjoyed an activity that gave each person an opportunity to act out a verb.  As a class, we had to determine the verb that was being acted.
*  We continued to focus on folktales/fables.  After enjoying a few short fables together, we were able to clearly see that each fable teaches a lesson or a moral.  We then again shared how the moral meant something to us personally in our lives.  
*  We enjoyed the folktale Turtle's Race with Beaver and had to determine the central message/lesson on our own.  We will continue to do more work with this story tomorrow. 
*  We also worked with great effort on enjoying our book boxes, practicing our spelling words, and using Language IXL to work with verbs within sentences.
*  We had to carefully read thermometers for math to use the temperature shown to complete a start-change-end diagram.  We also enjoyed a new math game today.  Thanks to Mrs. Hatlevig for joining us!
*  We really focused on using our "Tattling Turtle" today rather than tell Mrs. Luskey something during teaching time.  We also discussed whether some things can be let go of or if an adult needs to get involved.  Great discussion on that!  We are growing!
 
Have a wonderful night!  

12-8-17:  

Hi!

 
*  Monday's dress up day is Santa day.  Only if your child is interested...
 
Highlights of our day..
*  We began our day with a great learning of what a folktale is.  We also discussed that folktales are fairy tales, myths, legends, tall tales, and fables.  We enjoyed two short fables that provided morals, or lessons, for us as readers.  We had great discussions for each moral and how it pertained to our personal lives.
*  Speaking of lives, we know that some words when changed from singular to plural causes the spelling to change.  For example, life changes to lives for the singular to the plural.  We practiced a new spelling list that focused just on that spelling rule.  Some new ways of practicing today included using our non-writing hand to practice, write the spelling word with our eyes closed, or writing the words in LARGE print, medium print, and small print.  Final spelling will be Thursday, December 14th.  (Spelling words are always updated on our classroom webpage should you ever need.)
*  Great conferring time today during our read to self time.  We continue to actively think about our stories and share about what we've read after our book box time.  
*  We continued using part-part total diagrams to solve number stories in math.  We also compared Fahrenheit to Celsius degrees on a thermometer.  
*  We were excited to get new table spots at the end of the day.  However, this didn't end up happening.  Instead we had a problem-solving meeting about some of the things that have been popping up within our classroom.  The class decided the biggest area that we are in need of focusing on is tattling on others.  We have the "Tattling Turtle" in our classroom that we use to write Mrs. Luskey a quick note about something that may have not gone right.  We haven't been using it too often, rather we've been telling Mrs. Luskey while teaching is taking place.  Our classroom goal for next week is to use the "Tattling Turtle" when needed and to know that Mrs. Luskey will address the issue at a later time.  Thanks for checking in with your child regarding this. 
 
Have a wonderful weekend!  

12-7-17:  

Hello!

 
Highlights of our day...
*  We worked with Mrs. Kienow on divergent thinking.  Our focus for today's lesson was to use images and discover different items that those images could represent.  We would then rotate the image and determine if it resembled a new item with that rotation.  Divergent thinking practice pages are coming home today!
*  We continued a writing project, met in small guided reading groups, tested for spelling, and read from our book boxes.
*  We are brainstorming possible characters for our realistic fiction/fantasy story.  We are using a web to guide in listing character traits that we wish for our characters to have/show.  We also completed the same type of work with webs thinking about a setting(s) for our story.  You may wish to check in with your child about what characters and settings he/she is going to incorporate into our new "made-up" stories.
*  We have had some energy this week!  Even though the weather was chilly today, it was great for us to get outside.  Phy.Ed. too helped us come back ready to work.   
 
I treasure them!  Thanks for sharing your child with me!  Enjoy your night!  

12-6-17:  

Hi!

*  Spelling test is tomorrow, December 7th.
*  Mr. Wilson's dress up for tomorrow is a little trickier:  throw-back wear (holiday style)  Yikes!
 
Highlights of the day...
*  We continued to infer with the wonderful story Seven Blind Mice  by Ed Young.  We used our "detective skills" to infer clues from the author and background knowledge that we have to determine what the unknown object in the story was.  Perhaps your child can share with you what the unknown was.
*  We began parts of our holiday gift to you, so if your child tries to share anything with you, just cover your ears!  (Smile!)
*  We enjoyed writing, reading in small groups, reading to self, and spelling practice.
*  We focused on number stories in math.  We circled the important words that our brains need to know to correctly solve the number story.  We also completed a part-part total diagram and used a number grid to solve for the answer.
*  Tomorrow, we will begin our adventure in reading folktales/fables and determine the central message.  If your child owns any folktales/fables/fairy tales that he/she would like to bring to school, feel free! 
 
Have a super night!  

12-5-17:  

Hello!  We had a busy day today!  

 
Reminder:  Tomorrow's lunch is shrimp poppers, cucumbers, carrots, bananas, strawberries, and a cinnamon roll.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We started off our day with read to self time.  Our book boxes continue to be filled and refilled with just right books.  We know that reading is thinking.  So, our focus thinking stems for this week are to make connections in our reading and to make inferences.  We had the chance to share with our class any connections or inferences we were able to make within our just right books.  
*  We are beginning to draft our second type of writing.  We are wrapping up our personal narratives.  Today we had the opportunity to brainstorm some possible characters, settings, problems, and solutions for a realistic fiction or a fantasy story that we would like to write.  
*  We met in small reading group with Mrs. Luskey, practiced our spelling words, enjoyed a new online book source called Capstone, and read aloud with a reading buddy from a Scholastic News.
*  We used a part-part total diagram to organize numbers, and then used a number grid to correctly add the two larger numbers together.  
*   Warm clothes were so necessary for our outside recess today.  Thanks for sending them daily with your child!  
 
Have a wonderful night!  

12-4-17:  

Hi!  

*  We didn't get outside for recess today!  We do know that we will go out each day though unless it is raining or below zero in temperature.  Thanks for making sure your child has a warm coat, hat, gloves, and snow pants so recess is a fun time for him/her each day!
*  Kid's Choice for Wednesday is:  Shrimp poppers, cucumbers, carrots, bananas, strawberries, and a cinnamon roll.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We reviewed that verbs are words that show an action.  Your child will be coming home with a list of verbs that he/she does in different places in life.  Ex. verbs for school:  learn, write, read, draw, talk, play, etch.
*  We completed our daily rotations of:  playing a contractions game, writing in our life books, reading in small group with Mrs. Luskey, and working on verbs in Language IXL.  
*  We met for Reader's Workshop where Mrs. Luskey brought in a very old and dirty work boot.  We had to make inferences as to whether the boot was new or old and state the evidence.  We also had to determine the type of work that the boot owner does and state the evidence.  Through practice, we were able to understand that readers also make inferences.  We take what we already know (prior knowledge) and look at the evidence (both in words and pictures) and make an inference.  We just began reading Knuffle Bunny by looking more closely at the pictures to practice making inferences.
*  We used a start-change-end diagram to correctly solve number stories for math.
*  We enjoyed a game called "Save 20" that only requires 5 dice and 4 rolls.  Perhaps your child could teach you how to play!  
*  We are really enjoying our new read aloud titled The Year of Billy Miller.  This books provides wonderful 2nd grade connections that we are sharing aloud as we read.  
 
Enjoy your night!  

12-1-17:  

You could definitely feel the excitement of the upcoming weekend in Room 6 today! 

 
Highlights of our day...
*  We were able to view all of the items purchased for the Holiday Sharing for FR.  How amazing to see all that was donated as a school.  The kids were amazed at all of the wonderful items that are going to families that truly have a need.  
*  We continued to work on visualizing with a small poem titled "The Green Giant".  We were also able to make a text-to-text connection because in our read aloud book from yesterday, the Blue Earth Green Giant was mentioned.  Watch for Weekly Challenges coming home next week to see what your child's visualization looked like.
*  We took some time to practice new spelling words.  New ways to practice that were introduced today were using your spelling words to create a song, write your spelling words in different colors according to the number of syllables the word has, or to write the word and circle the vowels and box the consonants.  We love having different ways to practice our words each week!
*  We wrapped up the morning with finishing our fluency folders, writing our star student letters, completing our published books, and reading out of our book boxes.
*  In math, we played catch up!  Mrs. Luskey checked in with each group/individually with math learners on work that has been completed independently.  It's a good chance to see areas that we are strong in and areas that need more time and practice!
 
Have a great weekend!  

11-30-17:  

Hi!  

 
*  Book order(s) are due tomorrow, December 1st.
*  December calendar will be coming home soon!  All of a sudden, it is December. Time got away from me so I will be finishing up our classroom December calendar!  Tomorrow is Day 2-Media.
*  Kid's Choice for December 6th was planned by our class.  It is shrimp poppers, cucumbers, carrots, banana, strawberries, and a cinnamon roll.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We continued to look for connections within our "just right" book during read to self time.  We enjoyed this time for a total of 25 minutes with Mrs. Luskey conferring with individual readers.
*  We are wrapping up our published books.  Most students are finishing up!  So exciting!  
*  We were able to share a highlight or two from our published book in the author's chair today with Ms. Geddes and her class.
*  We used a number grid in math to determine the amount of numbers between two chosen numbers.  Ex. How many spaces from 56 to 92?  
*  We enjoyed a friendly game of Chutes and Ladders with a math buddy to continue working on our subtraction facts.  
 
Super day!  Enjoy your night!  

11-29-17:  

HI!

*  Spelling final is tomorrow, Thursday 11-30.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We continue to think about connections we make to our stories while we read.  We are jotting a note or two any time we come across something in our reading that connects to our personal lives, to another text, or to the world.  Such great thinking!
*  We enjoyed the story Ronald Morgan Goes to Bat.  With this story, we really thought about the major and minor characters of the story.  We also discussed how every story has a problem, and the problem usually takes place in the middle of the story.  We then discussed that the solution/resolution to the story takes place near the end.  With these thoughts in mind, we worked with a partner to complete a graphic organizer focusing on the plot of the story.  
*  For Reader's Workshop, we are continuing to discuss visualization.  Today, we enjoyed the story Fireflies.  Some of the pages were shown while being read, others were not.  Before the illustrations were shown, we had to listen carefully to all of the colorful, picture words used by the author to visualize the story.  Visualization pages are coming home today!  So fun!
*  We practiced from our fluency folders with a "cold" one minute reading.
*  We continued to practice our time telling skills on an analog clock.  We are also continuing our understanding of A.M. and P.M.  
 
Another amazing day!  Enjoy your night!  

11-28-17:  

Hi!  

*  Thank you for your holiday sharing donation!  We were able to purchase a winter coat, snow pants, boots, a winter hat, and several sweatshirts for a 6-year old girl.  
*  If you are interested in joining our class on December 15th, we have been invited to do an activity at Mala Strana from 10:45-11:30.  Please let me know if you'd like to join us.  We need one more adult to attend with our class.
 
Another awesome day!  Highlights are...
*  We continue to think deeper as a reader.  Today's reading challenge was to find different ways to connect with the books we are reading.  We are looking for text-to-self connections, text-to-text connections, and text-to-world connections.  Your children are amazing me in the connections they are finding in their just right books.  So cool!
*  We met with Ms. Geddes and her class to highlight a favorite part or two in our published books.  We are begging to bring our published books home, but can't just yet.  Your child will be adding his/her book to Seesaw once the book is complete.  
*  We continue to work with contractions and possessive nouns.
*  We met in whole group for math today as we had to collect data on how many pockets we had on our clothing.   We collected data, turned the data into a pictograph, and then turned that into a bar graph.  
 
A great day!  Enjoy your night!  

11-27-17:  

 Welcome Back!  What a great day!  

*  Tomorrow our class will be meeting with Mrs. Wooten to plan December Kid's Choice menu.  Ironically, our class was just talking about it a couple of weeks ago that they would like the chance to plan a meal for our school.  The next day our class name was drawn!  So lucky!  
*  Spelling final will be on Thursday, November 30th.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We learned that adding an 's or s' to singular and plural nouns shows possession or ownership.  We completed a practice sheet together to learn about this grammar rule.
*  We worked hard through our normal morning work of:  life book writing, reading with Mrs. Luskey in guided reading groups, reviewing contractions, and discussing the plot of a story read last week.  
*  For Reader's Workshop, we are focusing on visualization.  We talked about the need to visualize since this is a year to begin transitioning from picture books to chapter books.  We were able to practice our visualization together with Ms. Geddes and her class.  Mrs. Luskey would mention "picture" words and we would share what popped into our minds.  We also discussed that not all words are "picture" words within our reading.  On Wednesday, we will be continue to practice our visualization with a picture book, but we won't be seeing all of the illustrations right away.  When reading at home with your child, you could remind them of this reading strategy when you feel it is appropriate with the book you are reading.  "It's like watching a movie in our minds."
*  We continued to work with coins in math.  We are getting more secure every day with finding the exact amount and even counting our change.  Thanks to Mrs. Cloutier for joining us during workshop!
*  We HAD to enjoy the beautiful weather.  Fifteen minutes outside today was amazing!  
 
Enjoy your night!  

  11-22-17:  

Hi!  

 
What a great, busy day!  I'm so thankful for this group!  They are truly wonderful people!  Happy Thanksgiving to you all! 
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We turned a pie survey into a morning meeting greeting.  We surveyed ten classmates to find out their favorite type of pie.  We then turned the survey data into a bar graph.  We now know that a bar graph must have a title and labels on the sides and bottoms.  We also know that the bar graph must be completed accurately to match the same number of tallies from our survey.  We concluded the activity by finding the minimum and the maximum numbers in our pie survey.
*  We practiced a new list of words for spelling.  This list focuses on contractions.  Tough!  Our final will be next Thursday, November 30th.
*  All writers have now met with an adult to revise and edit work on our personal narratives.  We are in the final stage of publishing!  Some students were even able to finish up their books today.  So exciting!
*  We enjoyed the fantasy story A Turkey For Thanksgiving.  Your child may have added the plot of the story to his/her Seesaw folder.  If not, it will be completed next week.  We ran out of time!
*  We continued to work on giving back correct change.  Our number grids continue to be an amazing resource for us to find the correct amount needed.  "Start at what you bought, and count up to what you paid."
*  We enjoyed read to self time!
*  We didn't have a chance to complete an activity that I had planned on.  Your child may or may not have decided to bring home the craft.  Instead the class made me read the book The Book With No Pictures.  Well ask your child about that one!  Wow, was I set up!  The book is just too funny!  
 
Happy Thanksgiving!  Watch out for the "Turkey Pokey" coming home today!  We danced it a few times today!  

11-21-17:  

Hi!

*  Tomorrow is the last day to donate for the Holiday Sharing project if you are interested.  Thanks so much!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We read another Scholastic News today that focused on the same historical story that we read yesterday, yet told by a different person.  This helped us to read about and understand how point of view can really change a story.  We highlighted important information again and answered the questions much more independently today.  So impressive!  We also verified our answers within the text by rereading the highlighted information.  Impressive, right?  Good work 2nd graders!  
*  Our read to self time lasted almost 25 minutes.  Wow!  
*  We met in small reading groups, took our spelling final, and published!  The morning flew by so quickly!
*  We are continuing to work with a number grid to count back change given when "buying" something.  Today felt even smoother with this strategy.  Proof to us that practicing something again and again really does help us to learn new things! 
 
Have a super night!  

11-20-17:  

Hi!

 
A few notes...
*  Holiday Sharing money is still being collected for our class.  Donate if you'd like!  Thanks!
*  Kid's Choice for lunch tomorrow is:  sweet and sour chicken, brown rice, steamed corn, salad, strawberries, kiwi, and milk.
*  Spelling final is tomorrow, Tuesday the 21st.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We thought like 3rd graders today!  We are practicing reading a nonfiction selection for information.  Before reading the Scholastic News, we took a look at who, what, where, when, and why questions that we would be answering after we completed the reading.  We then read the text aloud.  If we read a section that contained the answer to the question, we would highlight it.  We know that highlighting and coloring are very different!  We were then able to quickly and correctly locate the answer within the text to ensure that we made the correct choice on our practice questions.  Tomorrow, we will complete the same type of activity based on another nonfiction selection with more independence.  (MN Standard)
*  We are continuing to publish our personal narratives.  Before publishing work time, we were able to listen and enjoy three pieces of work from 4th graders.  These students shared their personal narratives with us from what they published from 2nd grade.  
*  We practiced counting change today with number grids.  We pretended to buy items for a certain amount.  We then paid for those items with a higher amount.  We used our number grids to find the change that would be given back if we had bought the items at a store.  "We start at what we bought and count up to what we paid."  This little chant helped us in counting on our number grids.
*  We continue to focus on time on an analog clock and noting the difference between A.M. and P.M.  From what I heard today, many homes have fancy analog clocks with Roman Numerals.  Fancy, yet tricky!  (Words from our 2nd graders!)  Happy time telling!
 
Enjoy your night!  I'm off to a class tonight and tomorrow night to learn some new addition and subtraction fluency tricks.  Can't wait to share them with this crew!  

11-17-17:  

 Hi! 

*  Thanks for participating in the Holiday Sharing project!  If you are interested in shopping for our class, please let me know.  We are shopping for a 6-year old girl in need of snow pants, a winter coat, and sweatshirts.  
*  Our spelling final will be on Tuesday, November 21st.  
*  The annual FR food drive will take place on Monday and Tuesday of next week.  Feel free to send any donated food items to school with your child.  A note giving more information on the drive is coming home today.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We once again sang the noun song.  We also continued our work on how to change a singular noun to a plural noun. 
*  We enjoyed our read to self.  25 minutes!  Amazing!  Mrs. Luskey was able to confer with many readers today!
*  We are continuing to publish our personal narratives.  Again, Mrs. Luskey was able to check in with individual writers.  Our stories are coming along wonderfully!
*  We reviewed fact families and telling time on an analog clock.  In addition, we added in if the time is A.M. or P.M.  This may be something quick you could check in on periodically with your child in conversation.  Is it ____ A.M. or P.M. right now?  
*  We did get outside today in the dreary weather, but the fresh air did us some good.  Thanks for sending warm clothes as the temperature drops.  We do out each day for recess!
 
Have a wonderful weekend!  

11-16- 17:  

HI!

*  If your family would like to contribute to the Holiday Sharing for FR, the donation is due on Wednesday, November 22nd.  Thanks so much!
*  Spelling test is on Tuesday, November 21st.  
*  We are invited to walk to Mala Strana on December 15th from 10:45-11:30.  Please let Mrs. Luskey know if you'd like to join us.  Mala has asked us to split into two groups during our time there so we need one more adult for this mini trip to work out.  We will be enjoying an activity with the residents.  Thanks!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We began thinking about how nouns change in spelling from the singular form to the plural form.  So many rules!  (+s, +es, change the y to i and add es, etc.)
*  We sang our noun song today.  So fun!  Your child will be coming home with the words to the song tomorrow.  Happy singing!
*  We reviewed the plot of the story Tara and Tiree.  Your child also answered who, what, where, when, why, and how questions created for this story to check for comprehension.  
*  We continue to publish our personal narratives.  Each writer will meet with me to revise and edit his/her work before publishing a final copy.  
*  We wowed Mr. Giesen today when he popped in!  We were reading with amazing stamina during our read to self time!  Awesome!
*  We completed frames and arrow problems with two rules for math.  We enjoyed a new game called Salute!  Perhaps your child can teach it to you.  Thanks to Mrs. Cloutier for joining our crew today! 
 
Have a fantastic night!  

11-15-17:  

Hi!  I hope your child's day was a great one!  I was actually at home today with a sick child.  

 
Highlights of your child's day...
*  The story, Tara and Tiree, was read aloud.  The story is about two dogs that work together to save a man that falls through ice on a lake.  The goal was to ensure that the plot of the story could be highlighted by telling key events in the beginning, middle, and end of the story.  Your child used a beginning-middle-end graphic organizer to write and illustrate the plot of the story.  (MN Standard)
*  Life book writing, practicing spelling words, and read to self time were also a part of the day.
*  Your child reviewed how connecting to a story can be a way to make the author's words in a story come alive.  After finishing the read aloud The Relatives Came, your child was able to reflect on a connection or two he/she had to this story.  
*  We continue to work on subtraction facts.  With math rotations, your child was able to play a subtraction game, work on an addition and subtraction puzzle with the guest teacher, and work independently on subtraction too.  Thanks Mrs. Hatlevig for joining our group today!  
*  Time was given to publish your child's personal narrative.  You may want to check in with your child as to how his/her front and back covers are coming along.  Is your child going to do a dedication page, all about the author page, and a sneak peek?  All great parts to add to a well-published book!
 
Have a great night!  (I hope our night in the Luskey household goes well!)

11-14-17:  

Hi!

 
Here are some highlights of our day...
*  We took our spelling practice on our new list of words.  (r-controlled:  or, ir, and er)  Spelling final day will be on Tuesday, November 21st.  We learned three new ways to practice our words today:  stencils, fancy letters, and pass it.  Perhaps your child could teach you how to play pass it for spelling practice.
*  We enjoyed read to self time.  
*  Mrs. Luskey was only able to meet with three guided groups today.  If your child doesn't come with his/her reading folder, please note that I will be pulling those groups first tomorrow.  Thanks!
*  We are in the revising and editing phases of the writing process.  This takes time!  We know that!  Mrs. Luskey will be meeting individually with each writer to revise and edit work before the publishing can take place.  Wish us luck!
*  We focused on telling time with analog clocks.  We made a clock to guide us with our practice page today.  Your child had a choice to bring home an additional clock for extra practice at home.  Use it how you see fit!  Our 2nd grade standard requires 2nd graders to tell time to the nearest 5 minutes.  The 3rd grade standard is to tell time to the nearest minute.  You may find the best fit for your child as you practice at home!  
 
Have a super night!  Did I mention before that this group is amazing?  

11-13-17:  

Hi!

 
Items to note...
*  Thank you Veterans!  Your child had the opportunity to create a note/card for a Veteran.  If your child brings one home today, he/she needs your help to send it out or pass it along to the Veteran(s) in your life.  
*  We had a wonderful Veteran program this morning.  We also had a wonderful guest speaker join our class this morning.  We didn't have time to take our spelling practice.  We will pretest tomorrow on a new list of words.  The final test will then be on Tuesday, November 21st.  
*  If you are interested in participating in our holiday sharing program, thanks for sending in the donation amount that you'd like to contribute.  If you are interested in being our holiday shopper for this, please let me know!  Thanks!
*  Does anyone have an extra diffuser at home not being used?  If so, I'd love to borrow it for our classroom use.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  Our Veteran's Day program continues to be one of my favorites here at FR.  So touching and heartfelt.  Thanks to all Veterans!
*  We read about, wrote to, learned about the history of, and spent all morning focused on Veterans.
*  We reviewed coins today in math.  Our focus for today was to create an exact amount of cents using two different combinations of coins.  Our new chant we learned today was, "We, we, we like to holler.  We, we, we like to holler.  25, 50, 75, $1.00."  Can be chanted slowly or quickly!  
 
Have an amazing night!  

11-9-17:  

Hi!

 
A few reminders...
*  Have your child wear red, white, and blue on Monday for our Veteran's Day program.  The program is scheduled at 9:20 in our main gym.  
*  A classmate was really kind to invite all of our class to a birthday party.  I found two invitations on the floor of our classroom.  I want to make sure I can pass these invites on to the owners.  If you didn't see an invite come home from one of our classmates, please let me know.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We read a nonfiction selection titled A Walk in the Desert.  We were able to notice that many of the words that we worked on through drawings yesterday showed up in our reading.  Mrs. Luskey was so impressed when we could remember that the word arid means dry!  Wow!  Expanding our vocabulary!
*  For daily time we wrote a letter to our star student.  We began a PebbleGo read aloud on Chromebooks focusing on Veteran's Day.  We also were able to meet with Mrs. Luskey for guided reading groups.  Finally, we took our spelling final with a trusted buddy.  
*  We met for Reader's Workshop.  Today, we focused on making connections in our reading.  There are many ways a reader can connect to a story, but today we zoomed in on connecting something from a story to our self.  We began reading The Relatives Came and were instantly able to connect with so many ideas within the story.  To be continued into next week...
*  We seem to really have the concept of place value up to the thousands.  Check your child's SeeSaw folder to see how he/she is doing with this concept.
 
Have an amazing weekend!  

11-8-17:  

Hi!  Today we completed our CogAt Test with Mrs. Kienow.  She will need a bit of time to look at the data, and will then share that data with me.  It went well, and we thought of it as our "brain-teaser" time.  Lots of puzzles to complete on our Chromebooks.

 
Highlights of our day...
*  We know that there are four main parts to our everyday reading.  (Comprehension, Accuracy, Fluency, and Expanding Vocabulary)  Today we expanded our vocabulary by drawing quick sketches to new words.  These quick sketches are a different way for our brains to learn a new word.  You will notice these sketch pages coming home with your child today.  We enjoyed the word analogies on the last page of this practice.  Tomorrow we will create a large poster together as a class to "Tune into new words".  We will add new words to our chart and discuss those new words any time we come across one in our reading.  
*   We completed the CogAt from 10:30-11:30.  Thanks Mrs. Kienow for leading us!
*  We met for Writer's Workshop to finish up our discussion on the parts of the writing process.  We have zoomed in our piece of writing that we are going to publish, but now comes the hard work.  We will be revising and editing it first before it gets to go on nice publishing paper.  We also get the chance to add illustrations to our book.  Stay tuned!
*  We continued to work on place value.  We enjoyed a math game called "Number Top-It" that only requires a deck of cards.  Ask your child to teach you for a quick check in on his/her understanding of the thousands, hundreds, tens, and ones places.  We also tried a new site for speedy math facts practice called Xtramath.  Passwords are taped into your child's planner page.
 
Have a super night!  

11-7-17:  

Hi!

 
What a great, busy, fast day!  Here are our highlights...
*  We enjoyed creating a project with Mrs. Luskey's mom to show our thanks to all Veterans.  Our projects included painting a flag with cotton balls held by a clothespin.  We also traced both of our hands on red and blue construction paper, cut them out, and glued them all together in a heart shape around a thank you poem to Veterans.  
*  We LOVE read to self time.
*  We challenged our reading brain today with a little word puzzle during daily time.  We also practiced spelling words, enjoyed a Tumblebook, and read with Mrs. Luskey.
*  We learned that all writers follow a process to create a published piece of work.  We know that authors prewrite, draft a piece of writing, revise and edit that piece, and then publish it.  We are working on the revising and editing piece of a personal narrative that we have already drafted in our notebooks.  The publishing is so much fun!  We just have to be patient in getting to that point!  
*  We focused on the thousands, hundreds, tens, and ones place value in numbers.  We are excited to push ourselves to create higher numbers than this, but first we must learn to create and READ the numbers correctly.  (Our Minnesota standard at this point is to create numbers to the thousands.)
*  We continue to be wonderful, but you know that already!  
 
The large pencil has been found.  Yes!  
 
Have a super night!  

11-6-17:  

Good afternoon!

 
Reminder:  Our Veteran's Day program will be on Monday, November 13th at 9:20 in the main gym.  Veterans who are interested in joining us may arrive prior to 9:20 for a spot to sit in the gym.  It gets pretty full, but it's a wonderful event.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We worked in small groups to read a play titled The Strongest One.  This play provided good dialogue in how a play is written differently than a story.  We were each able to play a part and read aloud that part in our small groups.  We tried to add expression with our fluency to make the play come alive right in our classroom!  
*  We added three new spelling practice ways to our list.  We used a sign language poster that contains all of the letters of the alphabet, along with the hand positions.  With our lists, we were able to do the signs along with saying the letters from each word.  We also took black construction paper and poked with a push pin (BE CAREFUL 2nd GRADERS!) our words on the carpet.  It is a soothingly way to practice.  Our final way was using the game Upwords to build our words using tiles.  Ask your child what way he/she practiced words today at school!
*  We met in small guided reading groups with Mrs. Luskey.  (One of my favorite parts of the day!)
*  For Reader's Workshop, we discussed what to think about when we finish a book.  You may find this method a quick way to check in with your child regarding the comprehension on a book he/she is working on.  (The character __________, wanted _________________, but _______________ (problem), so ____________ (solution).  We also took our thinking a step farther and thought about what lesson the author wanted us to learn after having read the book.  "What does the author want to teach me?"  This question may be helpful to you for a discussion about a book your child is reading at home.  This helps us to think about how all of the parts of a story click together and what reflections are had based upon that book. 
*  We saw some larger subtraction facts today.  With these facts, we discussed some quicker strategies for solving them.  If we have a -9 problem, we can think of it as -10 and then +1.  If it's a -8 problem, we can think of it as -10 and then +2.  
*  We continue to enjoy our read aloud which continues to provide us with a nice mix of realism and fantasy.  
 
Have a super night!  

11-3-17:  

Hello!  Thank you so much to the families that met with me last night for conferences.  It was great to have some time to sit and chat with you about the wonderful things that I'm seeing from your child here at school.  I look forward to next week when I will meet with the rest of you!  

 
A few reminders...
*  Our Veteran's Day program is scheduled for Monday, November 13th at 9:20 in the main gym.  If you have a special Veteran that you'd like to invite to this, please do so.  We will honor our Veterans by attending the program and wearing red, white, and blue. 
*  There is no school on Friday, November 10th.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed a read aloud story Duck For President.  We had to then think about the realism and fantasy pieces to that story.  We filled out a graphic organizer on our to show that these two concepts within a story are clear to us.
*  We took a look at new spelling words for next week.  These words focus on r-controlled words.  (-or, ore, -ar)
*  Our read to self time is growing stronger and stronger by the day!  Awesome!  
*  We continued to think about main idea and details.  When creating our details to match our nonfiction selection, we have to be sure that it is a detail that supports the main idea, and not just a fact within our text that we found interesting.  We worked hard at this and Mrs. Luskey can tell the concept is coming along!
*  Mrs. Luskey checked in with each student during math workshop to see how the independent work (math boxes) is going for Unit 2.  During this time, we worked hard at the back table and were able to ask questions of math concepts that still trick us a bit or more time is needed to think about them.
*  We love our read aloud during snack break which is titled The World According to Humphrey.  It is a beautiful mix of realism and fantasy.  Can your child tell you piece from the story that shows fantasy?  Realism?
 
Enjoy your weekend!  
 

11-2-17:  

Hi!

 
A few reminders...
*  Our class will be completing the CogAt on November 8th from 9:30-10:30.  This is an assessment that gives us feedback as teachers as to different types of thinking/learning.  There is nothing to prepare for, but a good night sleep and a healthy breakfast would be beneficial.  If you have any questions regarding this, please contact Kate Kienow at 758-1748.
*  We don't have school on Friday, November 10th.  (Parent/Teacher Conferences)
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We continued to focus on fantasy and realism.  We completed a quick activity with a partner to decide if given examples were showing realism or fantasy.  (Seesaw folder)
*  We wrapped up a few items from yesterday.  We completed a "Weekly Challenge", finished reading a Scholastic News about the author David Shannon, used IXL Language for a bit of noun practice, and met with Mrs. Luskey in small working groups.
*  We made a choice within our writing as to what personal narrative we will use to complete the writing process.  You may want to ask your child what story he/she chose.  It may also be helpful to refresh your child's memory of that event so that all important details are a part of his/her writing.  Thanks for checking in on it!
*  We spent time in math continuing to work on name collection boxes and frames-and-arrows addition and subtraction.  We also used MobyMax to have some "rapid fire" practice for fact fluency.
*  We cleaned a bit...the room was looking a little shabby!  We are ready for some families to come for conferences tonight!  You are invited to check your child's desk too!  (That seems to motivate us to organize our desks a bit!  Wink!)
 
See some of you tonight!  Enjoy your evening!  

11-1-17:  

Hi!

 
FYI...we had a lockdown DRILL today!  It was only practice, but I thought I'd mention it should your child say something.  Thanks!
 
Highlights of our day..
*  We added a fluency reading to our Seesaw folders today.  Perhaps you'll find a minute of time to listen to your child reading aloud.  Our reading goal for 2nd grade is reading accurately.  Fluency comes second to that, but we practice it nevertheless.
*  We enjoyed a story based all on asking questions.  Yes Day! asks crazy questions within the book, and the answer is always the same, "Yes!"  Perhaps your child will be asking when his/her "Yes" day will be!
*  We thought about what authors do within their writing to make it powerful and have all of the parts come together to make the whole story click.  
*  We sequenced an additional story Henry and Mudge.  By sequencing a story, or putting in order, we are able to quickly check how well our brains comprehended the story.  Can you tell we read a lot in 2nd grade?
*  We continued working on in and out boxes for math by adding or subtracting a certain number based on the rule.  
*  We are working hard!  Wow!  Amazing growth!  I'm so proud of these wonderful people!  
 
Enjoy your night!  I look forward to seeing some of our families tomorrow night at conferences.  

10-31-17:  

Hi!

 
*Just a reminder about stopping in at Mala Strana from 5:45-7:00 if it works for your family's trick-or-treating!  Enjoy your night out!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We kicked off the day by working on fluency and expression with our Kindergarten buddies.  We were able to enjoy some reading time by reading a picture book aloud to our buddies.  Pictures were added to your child's SeeSaw folders.
*  We continue to think about realism and fantasy within texts.  
*  We spent time learning some facts about growing large pumpkins.  We then took the article that we read and stated three details to support the main idea.  
*   We enjoyed read to self.  
*   We are thinking about the writing process in Writer's Workshop.  Your child will soon be picking a personal narrative to zoom in on by using all of the steps in the writing process.
*  We enjoyed some pumpkin activities...mazes, lines of symmetry, pumpkin glyphs during math workshop.  We also learned about "What's my rule?" tables while working in small group with Mrs. Luskey.
 
Enjoy your night!  

10-30-17:  

 

10-27-17: Hi!

 
Please see the following invitation for your family from Mala Strana:  
 
 

Halloween Party!

Tuesday, October 31st

5:45pm-7pm

Kids ages 10 and under welcome to trick or treat with residents in Great Room!


C:\Users\MSATRDIR\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\ZVWDZ4LW\happy-halloween-22[1].gif
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We reviewed nouns and then took them a step further.  Today, we focused on proper nouns.
*  We created some imaginative sentences that helped us to understand fantasy, rather than realism.
*  We practiced our reading fluency with Mrs. Luskey in small group.
*  We enjoyed our read aloud Those Darn Squirrels by thinking of when we react as readers.  What did we react at?  Why did we react in a certain way?  How did the author make us react?  We used the silent stop hand signal while reading to show there was a part in the story that made us react in some way.  After our read to self time, we had a chance to share about a part in our own stories that made us react and why.  (It's so exciting to watch our 2nd grade reading brains continue to dive deeper into texts.)
*  We tried a new site today called MobyMax.  This site focuses on just about everything for our learning brains!
*  We completed frames and arrows problems for math.
*  We practiced reading aloud October picture books with fluency and expression in preparation for our Kindergarten buddies.  We will be enjoying some time with them tomorrow morning to read!
 
Thanks for sending warm winter gear for our outside recess time!  Have a great night!    

Hello!

 
*  It was a great day!  Thanks to the parents that volunteered in our classroom this afternoon!  Your time and craftiness is so appreciated!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed the expository nonfiction selection titled The Life Cycle of a Pumpkin.  We then created questions from the article as if we were the teacher and had to ask our class who, what, where, when, and why questions.  (Minnesota State Standard:  I can create who, what, where, when, and why questions based on a nonfiction selection.)
*  We practiced new spelling words in new ways.
*  We enjoyed reading some Fall/Halloween stories from Mrs. Luskey's special collection.
*  We celebrated with activities, crafts, and floats for our Harvest Party.
 
Enjoy your weekend!  

10-26-17:  

Hello!

*  Remember to send your child's costume along with him/her to school tomorrow, Friday the 27th.  We will quickly change into them after our recess time.  We will then be changing back into our clothes before heading to specialists at 2:00.  Those parents helping out...thank you!  See you at 12:50 in our classroom!
*  Remember no scary/violent costumes for tomorrow.  Thanks for your help!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We continued our discussion about saying no to drugs.  (Again, our Health books were wonderful resources to provide a 2nd grade friendly resource.)  We discussed a "Refuse to Use" plan.  Step 1:  Say no!  Step 2:  Give a reason.  Step 3:  Say no again.  Step 4:  Tell a trusted adult.
*  We added a fact and an opinion about Halloween in our Seesaw folders.  If your child's facts or opinions weren't quite right, no worries!  We will continue working on this concept throughout the year.  I just wanted you to see where your child was at with this!
*  We enjoyed our time with Mrs. Kienow during our math block.  She helps us to stretch our brains and think in different ways during her lesson.  She will be back with us on November 8th.
*  We continued to work on our fluency with a timed one-minute practice.  This is only practice and now we can practice it again and again without a timing.  
*  We know that the weather is changing...quickly!  Thanks for ensuring that your child has proper clothing each day to go outside for recess.  
Enjoy your night!  

10-25-17:  

Hello!

 
*  Reminder that our Harvest party is Friday, October 27th from 1-2.  Thanks to those parents that have volunteered to help with our 2nd grade carnival style party.  If you are helping to run a game/activity, please sign in at the office and head down to our room.  Mrs. Luskey will direct you to where you will then set up your station.  Feel free to come down to our room around 12:50 to set up!  Thanks!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We felt so patriotic wearing red, white, and blue.  "United we stand against bullying and drugs."
*  We used our Health books to read about some facts on tobacco and alcohol use.  This allowed us to discuss the purpose of "Red Ribbon" week in a very 2nd grade friendly way.  
*  We created our own "Red Ribbon" week pledges on what healthy things we CAN put into our bodies. 
*  We continued our wonderful picture-book read aloud Those Darn Squirrels.  This read aloud is taking time because we are really focusing on retelling.  This is how we can check that a story is making sense to our brains.  Feel free to try these story talking points at home in your next book you enjoy with your child.  (Names of characters, what the character wants, what the problem is, and the solution)
*  We filled name-collection boxes with addition and subtraction number models, coins, tallies, drawings, words, and base-10 blocks to all show the same value.  
*  We enjoyed daily time (reading/writing) and read to self time.  
 
Tomorrow is mismatch day!  It could be a wild one!  Enjoy your night!  

10-24-17:  

Hi!

 
A few notes to pass along to you...
*  Please see the following from Brian Thorstad:

We are excited to announce that the Dallas Brass (http://www.dallasbrass.com/) will be performing a concert in the NPHS Auditorium at 7:00 PM on Friday, October 27, 2017.  The members of the Dallas Brass are world class musicians and educators who have performed throughout the United States and abroad.  Feel free to check out their website and this promotional video for a sneak peak of the outstanding musicianship they will bring to our students and community (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HswDduOinMw)!


This would be an outstanding family event if you're looking for something to do on Friday night! We have a limited amount of tickets available and do anticipate selling out. I would encourage you to return ticket orders quickly if you would like to attend.  Tickets are $10.00 each and can be purchased by filling out the attached ticket order form.  All ticket orders should be returned to a band director, the NPHS Activities Office or the NPHS Main Office with checks being made out to “NP Band Boosters.”  


We’re excited to share this incredible music opportunity with our students and community!  Please reach out to a band director if you have any questions about this event.  We hope to see you there!

 

*  Our Harvest Party is set for Friday, October 27th from 1-2.  Please send your child's costume to school on that day.  We will make time to change before the party begins.  Mr. Giesen is asking for nonviolent/not scary costumes for our school party.  He is also asking for face painting/hair painting to wait for after school activities.  Please let Mrs. Luskey know if you have any questions.  I will have a special treat for our class to enjoy after specialists on Friday.  If you'd like to send a treat along for classmates, we have 22 students in our class.  (Totally optional!)

 

*  Please watch for information coming home regarding CogAt testing for 2nd grade students on November 8th.  

*  Tomorrow is red, white, and blue day!  "United we stand against bullying and drugs."

 

Highlights of our day...

*  We enjoyed the story A Mink, A Fink, and Skating Rink:  What is a noun?.  We went on a school-wide scavenger hunt to look for many people, places, and things that we have in our school.  Look for your child's list of nouns coming home today!

*  We continued thinking about facts and opinions.

*  We met in small guided reading groups.

*  We removed some common, boring words from our writing.  The following words have been thrown out: cool, stuff, nice, The End, things.  

*  We created two lists of common words we hear in number stories that tell us whether to add or subtract.   We solved number stories that focused on subtraction.  When reading a number story, we circle only the important parts of the number story that our brains need to know in order to solve them correctly.

*  We were an amazing audience for four 5th grade students that shared their fish projects with us. 

*  We had a great day!

 

Enjoy your evening!  

10-23-17:  

Good afternoon!

 
What an exciting, busy day!  We began our day with Viktor the Viking reminding us about how to "STOP" bullying!  S:  Stand up to bullying.  T:  Take appropriate action.  O:  Open up to an adult.  P:  Protect yourself.  (Your child is coming home with a purple stop sign of his/her own.)  
 
We also took time to paint/decorate pumpkins.  SO MUCH FUN!  Thanks to Mrs. Engquist for organizing this project for us.  Thanks also to Barten Pumpkins for donating all of the pumpkins and Lakeville Walmart for donating the paints/supplies.  
 
Highlights of our day..
*  We loved learning with Viktor the Viking about stopping bullying.
*  We learned about facts and opinions using October ideas.  Can your child tell you the difference between facts and opinions?  (Mrs. Luskey says that facts we know with our brains.  Opinions we feel in our hearts.)
*  We met with Ms. Geddes and her class for Reader's Workshop.  Today we took a good look at the cover of a book and then took time to read the sneak peek on the back cover of the book.  By zooming in to special parts the author has given us in a book, we are able to really understand more about it.  We began Those Darn Squirrels.  Can your child remember the main character's name?  What facts do we know about him?
*  We painted pumpkins.  We also completed a pumpkin grid work page.

10-18-17:  

Another full, fun day...

*  We have our Red Ribbon Week next week.  To begin the week, we will welcome Viktor the Viking on Monday.  Therefore, your child can either wear Vikings gear or pajamas.  A small stuffed animal/blanket is welcome too.  We thought it would be fun to read by flashlight on Monday.  If you happen to have one at home that you don't mind your child bringing to school, pack that too.  
*  Remember to sign up for fall conferences.  
*  No school on Thursday and Friday
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed a Climb Theater production reminding us to reduce, reuse, and recycle.
*  We took our spelling practice for our new list of words.
*  We read amazingly from our book boxes during read to self time.  
*  We took our first subtraction five-minute timing.  Aah, the stress of the clock!
*  We spent our snack break enjoying a guided drawing of the pigeon from Don't Let the Pigeon Drive The Bus.  These drawings are attached to our four types of sentences that we created yesterday!
 
Have a wonderful weekend!  

10-17-17:  

Good afternoon!  It was a full, great day!

 
A few reminders for you...
*  Please take time to register for fall conferences for your child if you haven't done so yet!  I really enjoy meeting with families during this time.  Please let me know if you'd like me to sign you up for a date and time.  Thanks!
*  Tomorrow is our last day of school for the week.  Happy MEA!  
*  We will take our spelling pretest tomorrow.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We added two more types of sentences to our knowledge.  We reviewed questions and statements and added exclamations and commands.  We reviewed commands by stating some commands that we hear daily at home by our parents.  Turns out parents are a bit bossy!  :)   We enjoyed the story Don't Let The Pigeon Drive The Bus and then pretended we were the pigeon.  Our job was to write a sentence of each type as if we were the pigeon wanting to drive the bus.
*  We continue working though our daily rotations.  IXL is also practice for us in language arts.  Today we used IXL for that purpose.
*  We met with Ms. Geddes and her class to review our reading strategies.  We also added looking carefully at the beginning, end, and middle of new words.  In addition, we added that as a reader we must check that the word we read makes sense.  To practice this, we shared a joke book with a reading partner.  This allowed us to practice a joke first, check that it makes sense in how we are going to read it, and then could share the joke with a partner.  We had a blast.
*  We used dominos to think about fact families.  We wrote two addition facts from the dots on the dominos and then wrote the two subtraction facts from the domino.  We know that the biggest number in the fact family must begin the subtraction fact.
*  We began our first chapter book read aloud of The World According to Humphrey.
 
Have an awesome night!  

10-16-17:  

Hello!  

 
*  Just a reminder that there is no school on Thursday and Friday of this week!
*  When we return next week, we will kick off our Red Ribbon Dress-Up Days.  Please see our classroom webpage/small note sent home last week regarding dress up days.  
 
Highlights from our day...
*  We discussed the difference between tattling and reporting.  (Mrs. Luskey introduced what we can do to let her know about incidents that occur at any time during our school day.)
*  We wrote two times today:  Life Books and Writer's Workshop with Ms. Geddes.
*  We met in small guided reading groups with Mrs. Luskey.  (Reminder:  use the books coming home how you wish.  Reread the pages read in small group, ask about the pages read to check for comprehension, or just scan the book for your own knowledge of what your child is reading with me.  There are no rules how to use the book!  Thanks for sending the book back to school on the next school day so we can continue on with our reading.)
*  We are continuing to focus on fact fluency.  Today we thought about doubles addition facts.  We then solved a fact quickly by thinking about one more, one less, or even two or three more.  
*  We enjoyed read to self time!  

10-13-17:  

Hello Friday!  It was truly a great week!  Thanks amazing 2nd graders!

Highlights of our day...

*  We enjoyed the activity "Pepperoni" to practice forming questions.  The idea of the activity is to ask a brave volunteer a question.  The answer every time to the question is pepperoni.  The trick of the activity is to answer every question without smiling.  Enjoy this activity around your dinner table some night!

*  We DIDN'T take a spelling pretest.  Breaks from routine, especially spelling, feel great!  We will pretest next week and will wrap up that list the following week.  This is due to MEA next week.  (School is only M-W.)

*  We read for our stamina time of almost 35 minutes.  Wow!   Amazing!
*  We used Pebble Go to practice main idea and details.  We chose a short book on outer space and completed a graphic organizer on our own to focus on details that pertain to the topic.

*  We enjoyed a school-wide closing meeting at the end of the day to promote the continued collection of pop tabs.  Thanks for your support in this school-wide project!  

 

Have a wonderful weekend!  

 

10-12-17:  

Hi!  What a great day!  

 
Here are some highlights...
*  We reviewed main idea and details.  
*  Our reading stamina is up to 25 minutes of reading from our book boxes.  
*  We completed our spelling words final practice with a partner.  (Remember to check in with me if ever your child's list doesn't feel quite right.  My view on spelling is more so for vocabulary building and learning spelling patterns within words.  The goal is never to make the list too challenging, but to find a balance of some review words and some new.)
*  We practiced logging onto Raz Kids.  This is a great resource for your child to have a book read aloud to him/her, read the book again on own, and finally check in for comprehension by answering questions about the book.  This site is tailored to each child for his/her reading.  Therefore, it's a good site that your child is welcome to use any time that you see fit at home.  Passwords for RazKids are taped on the back cover of your child's planner.
*  We reviewed +9 addition facts.  We really tried to think quickly today by choosing the best strategies for our brains.  One strategy is to use touch dots.  Another is to look at the other number in the problem and think of the number that is one less and then add a 1 in front of that number to make it a "teenager".  The other strategy is to think that the nine is a ten and then subtract one.  What strategy does your child prefer to use?
*  We were so lucky to have Mr. Wagner join our class this afternoon to discuss fire safety with us.  
 
Enjoy your night!   

10-11-17:  

Please use this link https://sites.google.com/isd721.org/falconridge/falcon-ridge-elementary as a way to stay connected to our Falcon Ridge news/Mr. Giesen notes.  Thanks!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We read a nonfiction passage about food in space.  We then took the facts from that passage to determine the main idea of the passage and details from it.  Can your child remember some of the fun facts about food in space?
*  We continued our learning about questions and statements by interviewing a partner.  Our partner then had to answer a question with a statement.  Some partners were able to add their interview onto Seesaw.  We will finish up the remaining partner groups tomorrow.
*  We added more ideas to our list on reading strategies to use when we are stuck on a word. 
*  We reviewed how to use an addition table to find the answers to addition problems.  We know the answer to an addition problem is also called the sum.
*  We were able to play "Doubles or Nothing" as our new math game.  Thanks to Mrs. Cloutier for helping out today!

Have a super night!  

10-10-17: 

*  Tomorrow's lunch is:  
Popcorn Chicken
Corn on the cob
Cinnamon rolls
Strawberries
Watermelon
Milk
*  Your child may be coming home with his/her reading folder.  I know nights are so busy and go so fast!  The folder is not meant to add any stress to your night.  Rather, I love to keep you informed!  So, you can have your child reread the pages that we read during small guided reading group.  Or you can just ask your child about what he/she read on the pages/check for comprehension.  Or you can simply just take a quick peek at the book for your knowledge.  Please use the folder/book however you see fit for your child or however it fits into your night.  Thanks for helping your child return the folder the next day as we will continue our reading.  (I wasn't able to meet with two small groups this morning.  If your child doesn't have his/her folder tonight, please know that I'll be meeting with those groups right away tomorrow morning.
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We created a list of question words and then created three questions of our own.  Tomorrow we are going to interview a partner.  The partner will then give a statement in regards to the question.  We can identify statements and questions.
*  We met in small guided reading groups.
*  We made a list of reading strategies that we use when we come upon a new word in our reading.
*  We enjoyed the beginning part of the story The Book Eating Boy.
*  We used a number grid to count numbers in between two given numbers.  Ex. How many spaces on the number grid from 23 to 31?  
*   We enjoyed the story The Grouchy Ladybug during our snack break.
*  We continued to think about fire safety and read Firefighters' Jobs from our Scholastic News.   
 
Enjoy your night!  

10-9-17:  

Hello!  

 
A few notes for you...
*  Our Kid's Choice menu for Wednesday, October 11th is:  
Popcorn Chicken
Corn on the cob
Cinnamon rolls
Strawberries
Watermelon
Milk
*  Your child is coming home today with a "Pull For The House" bracelet from the Ronald McDonald House.  Today, we watched a short clip to remind ourselves to collect pop tabs if we can.  Keep on collecting and send pop tabs to school with your child.  Thanks!  
*  We had a fire drill today with the NP Fire Department here.  This is routine practice to kick-off our fire safety week.  Mr.  Wagner will be joining our class on Thursday to discuss fire safety.  This may be a good week to discuss your fire plan at home with your child.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We read for 25 minutes straight during read to self.  Our best yet!  Mrs. Luskey was able to confer with individual readers during this time.  So fun!
*  We learned about subjects and predicates of sentences.  We know that a complete sentence needs both parts.  We wrote three subjects on a piece of paper and then switched our paper with a partner.  Our partner then completed the subject by adding a predicate to it.  
*  We continued writing in our Writer's Workshop notebooks.
*  We met with Mrs. Luskey in small guided reading groups to take a picture walk through our new books within our reading folders.  Watch for your child's reading folder to make its way home tomorrow.
*  We practiced our fact fluency with touch dots for solving.  We also worked on larger number grids (numbers in the 300s) and enjoyed our flash cards with the game of Chutes and Ladders.

10-6-17:  

Good afternoon!  

 
Some notes for you...
*  Please see the following message from the High School:  Students and staff at New Prague High School are PROUD to be participating in Stomp Out Bullying Day again this year. We had a great turnout last year and hope to have an even greater one this year. We will be wearing BLUE on Monday October 9th. Please encourage your students to wear blue and take a stand against bullying. We hope to include all staff and all the buildings this year. Staff is also encouraged to participate. Please help us raise awareness and put an end to bullying and cyberbullying. Wear BLUE next Monday
*  From Mr. Giesen:  A nice feature on our new aquatic center was aired on channel 45 the other night, featuring some great footage from the facility, along with comments from our very own FR teacher, Tracy Torgerson. The link to view the show is http://prepspotlight.tv/MSHSL/SpotlightShow and the feature on the pool can be found around the 21 minute mark. 
*  This is a reminder and invitation to you that this Sunday, we will be hosting an Open House for the newly renovated Middle School, CEC, and Aquatics Center. 
If you have been unable to get into any of these buildings this fall, this would be a great opportunity for you and your family.  
 
At 1:00 p.m., there will be a short ceremony in the District Office Parking Lot (Door 1 Plaza).  Here you will hear Supt. Dittberner address and welcome everyone.  Mayor Chuck Nickolay will also address the crowd and talk about the collaboration between the City of NP and the School District.  
 
After the ceremony, the doors will be open to all three venues where you are free to roam the buildings.  Staff will be in certain locations to answer questions and show you around.  It looks like it's going to be a beautiful day.  
*  Please see the note coming home today with your child regarding "Pennies for Polio".  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We met with our Kindergarten Buddy Classroom to help them make their personal Homecoming hats.
*  We were able to make our own Homecoming hats to wear around school and the parade.  Unfortunately, the hats got completely soaked during the parade.  I'm not sure if your child brought his/hers home.  It may be in the recycling bin instead!  
*  We are working on new words that focus on consonant blends.  (st, str, etc.)
*  We focused on main idea and details within a text/passage.
*  We enjoyed the parade.  Whoa, we got soaked!  
*  We were introduced to the math program Prodigy.  This is such a fun program that does help us learn math concepts.  We will play Prodigy during math workshop on Fridays, but your child is invited to enjoy it at any time at home.  His/her password is taped to the back cover of his/her planner. 
*  We estimated the amount of candy that we got.  We also got to enjoy SOME of it!  You child is coming home with a piece or two.  (Maybe!)
 
Enjoy your weekend!  I sure enjoy your child!  

10-4-17:  

Good afternoon!  We are back on track...having an awesome day!  

 
A few notes for you...
*  I will be volunteering at the 4th grade Kindness Retreat tomorrow here at FR.  The guest teacher for our class with again be Kathy Doyle.  Thanks for understanding!
*  On Sunday, October 8, from 1 p.m to 4 p.m., New Prague Area Schools will be hosting an Open House for their newly renovated Central Education Campus and Middle School. The brand new Aquatics Center will also be part of the Open House. District 721 is very proud of its completed projects and would like to invite any and all community and school members who would like to attend. At 1 p.m., there will be a short program taking place outside the front entrance of the District Office doors of the Central Education Campus. Come and listen to the distinguished guests as they speak on the completion of the renovations and the collaborative working relationship between the City of New Prague and New Prague Area Schools. The Middle School Band will provide music for this great event. After the program, all buildings will be open to tour. Staff from each building and department will be on hand to answer questions and show you around. Refreshments will be provided at each building. If you have anyquestions, please contact Tony Buthe at 952-758-1767.
*  See the following from Mr. Giesen regarding Homecoming:  
  • A few reminders to share in regards to homecoming: students attending the game should bring their student ID which will get them in for free, and should sit with their parents during the game. In regards to the school day on Friday, please continue to remind students that they should not wear face/hair paint to school. Lastly, the forecast looks to be cool and wet-it would be a good idea to remind kids to dress for the weather. If the weather doesn't cooperate, the parade will be cancelled. 
Highlights of our day...
*  We WORKED hard!  Yes!  Yes!  Yes!  Back on track!
*  We practiced our fluency by reading for 1 minute with Mrs. Luskey.
*  We are building our "read to self" time and are up to 20 minutes of real reading.  
*  We enjoyed our poetry folders to read poems, but also to practice reading aloud with a partner.  
*  We began writing number stories in math.
*  We used the board game of Chutes and Ladders to practice our flash cards on addition.
*  We practiced our spelling words by playing the game "Sparkle".  This might be a fun game to play around the dinner table.  Ask your child to teach you!
*  We signed our classroom expectations/class pledge and have been working by these expectations all day long.  
 
Enjoy your night!  

10-3-17:

Hi!  We had a bit of a chatty/busy day!  

 
A few items to note:
*  Picture retakes are tomorrow (10-4).  Please send your child's picture packet back to school if you are wishing for him/her to have retakes.  Retakes will take place promptly at 9:15.  A volunteer will come to our classroom to take any student needing retakes.  Thanks!
*   This was passed on to our FR staff from Mr. Giesen.  Use if you see fit.  
*  Please see the following note from our phy.ed. teacher, Dan Wagner:  "I want to let you know about an open house we will be hosting at the New Prague Fire Station on Sunday October 8th from 10 to 1.  I understand it is the same day as the district open house...which is why we scheduled it in the morning/early afternoon this year.  There will be fun and games for the kids, station tours, handouts, information, and more!"
 
Highlights of our day..
*  Building our read to self time to almost 20 minutes.  Mrs. Luskey was able to confer with individual readers during this time.  So fun!
*  We met with Ms. Geddes and her class for Writer's Workshop.  Our focus lesson was on adding transition words to our writing.
*  We wrapped up Unit 1 in math and look forward to beginning Unit 2 tomorrow.
*  We had our first problem-solving meeting as to how we can learn from today and make tomorrow stronger.  Perhaps you'd like to check in with your child on how things went for him/her in learning today.  Thanks!
 
Enjoy your night!  

 10-2-17:  

Wow!  I can't believe that it's October already!  We've been busy!

 
A few reminders...
*  Homecoming buttons and poms are on sale before school in the front of the office.  If you'd like your child to purchase either, buttons are $0.50 and poms are $1.00.
*  We are continuing to collect pop tabs here this year!  Special thanks to Nick and Carter from our class who helped me empty the Ronald McDonald House before school began.  We will store the pop tabs here all year and take them to the RMH at the end of the school year.  
*  Tomorrow (Tuesday) is Twins Day!  Wear your Twins' gear if you have any!  We don't do any other Homecoming dress up days like you may find at the Middle School or High School.  On Friday, we will show our Trojan Pride by dressing in red and black.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We completed our first four "Daily" rotations successfully!  Wow!  What an accomplishment.  Your child was able to work on writing, practice spelling words, listen to reading, and work in a small reading group with Mrs. Luskey.  
*  We know that to grow our reading beanstalk, we need to stop and think about what the words on the page are telling us.  Reading is thinking!  When we finish reading a page, we stop and think about who were the characters and what were they doing.  "Who?  Doing what?"  This is a quick check-in for our comprehension.  Try it during a time when you are reading with your child.
*  We practiced touch dots for numbers.  Our goal is to use touch dots when solving an addition or subtraction fact rather than using our fingers for counting.  Touch dots are more efficient and create less error when using them.  
Inline image 1
 
*  We will begin Star Student next week.  Our first "mystery student" envelope was revealed today!  This person has the week to prepare for star student time next week!  
 
Have a great evening!  

9-29-17:  

Hello!  TGIF..

 
Some updates/calendar events for you...
Tuesday, October 3rd:  Students are invited to wear Twins gear for the big "playoff" game!
Wednesday, October 4th:  Picture retakes!  
Friday, October 6th:  We will be enjoying the Homecoming parade which begins at 1:00.  We will have an earlier lunch and recess on Friday.  (11:40-12:15)  We will then head out to the front of our school to enjoy the parade together as a class.  Students are invited to wear red and black for the event.  Mr. Giesen is asking for face paint/hair paint to wait until after school for the game.  Thanks for your help!
 
Wanted Classroom Items:
Do you have any games/puzzles that you are no longer using at home?  We'd love to have them for our classroom.  Each morning our brains get warmed up by enjoying "brain teasers".  Any games/activities that are strategy based or are good for building/creating would be wonderful for adding to our collection.  Thanks for considering!  
 
Highlights of our day:
*  We are getting more families signed up for Seesaw.  (Mrs. Luskey's teacher goal)
*  We took our spelling practice for our new list of words.  We are now focusing on words with long vowel sounds.  We now have a personal word and nine other words to practice.  (Just a reminder that our classroom webpage houses the spelling words for the week, as well as each email gets added to the page for a monthly update.)  http://www.npaschools.org/users/lluskey
*  We completed our first "Weekly Challenge".  This review page is one that will be completed each Friday by your child.  The page focuses on spelling words, sentence structure, proper end marks, grammar, and math skills of the week.  Please watch for this page to come home each week to check in on how your child is doing with the new information presented at school.  These pages are a good indicator as to what your child understood and what your child could use some additional practice on at school and at home.  Weekly Challenges are also scored.  You will notice a Language score and a Math score by each section.  As always, contact me with any questions you may have.  Thanks!
*  We spent a few minutes looking deeper into the Tumblebooks site.  This a great resource for enjoying books that are read aloud to us.  To use the site at home, the username is npfr and the password is books.  
*  We added more flashcards to our collection.  These flashcards focus on the numbers that together are compliments of ten.  We enjoyed the card game "Fishing for 10".  Can your child teach you how to play by using a deck of cards?  
*  We read the story Strega Nona and discussed logical consequences.  
 
I hope your weekend is wonderful!  Enjoy!    

9-28-17:  

Hi!

 
Another busy day!  Here we go...
*  We enjoyed the story Each Kindness.  "Kindness is like dropping a small rock into the water.  Each little thing we do goes out, like a ripple, into the world.  Even small things count.  Each kindness makes the whole world a little bit better."
*  We compared numbers using greater than, less than, or equal to.  We also added doubles plus one cards to our flash cards.  Ask your child to explain the quick way of thinking to solve a doubles plus one fact.  
*  We took our second spelling test with a buddy.  (Thursdays are the day for the final test on the list.  I hope this schedule is working out for your child.  Friday-Thursday)
*  We discussed what self-control looks like, feels like, and sounds like.  
*  We know that to grow our reading beanstalk, we are trying to group more words together in our reading.  This will help us to practice reading more fluently, rather than one word at a time.
*  We are loving the activity of 10.  Ask your child to teach you!  
 
A few reminders...
We will be using SeeSaw more and more throughout the year.  My personal teaching goal is to add more items onto SeeSaw for you to view.  Please let me know if you need your child's SeeSaw information to get going with this site.  Thanks!  
 
October classroom calendars are in the works.  Thanks for being patient as I'm not sure I'll have them ready to go home with your child tomorrow.  
 
We had such a fun day together!  I hope your child thinks so too!  Enjoy your night!  

9-27-17:  

Good afternoon!  

 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed the story Chrysanthemum.  We discussed characters and settings of stories that we are reading or have read.  
*  We built sentences during our "Word Work" time.  We know that sentences need a capital letter to begin, words that are in order to make sense, and punctuation at the end.  We also established what expectations we need during our "word work" time to be successful.  
*  We began reading from our fluency folders.  We discussed that fluency in reading is reading accurately, with expression, and guides us to understand what we are reading.  For our first practice, we actually raced against a one minute clock.  Tomorrow, we will then go back and read, reread, and reread again the same passage.  This shows us that practice reading something more than once also helps our comprehension and fluency.  After all of our practice times, we will race the clock one more time to see if our words per minute jumped.  
*  We reviewed our doubles addition facts.  Your child will be coming home with addition flash cards today of the doubles facts.  Practice if you wish!  Thanks for returning them to school each day for more cards to be added!  
*  We enjoyed writing time in our Life Books.  We established our expectations for "Working on Writing" time.  
*  We enjoyed Reader's Workshop with Ms. Geddes and her class.  During this time, we discussed that growing our reading brains requires us to read more and more.  We also began setting a reading goal for each time we read in school.  Our goal must be reasonable and attainable for our read to self time.  Ask your child if he/she met his reading goal today during read to self.  
 
Fabulous group, fabulous day!  Enjoy your night!  

9-26-17:  

Well....it feels good to be back!  Thank you to each and every student in our classroom for being so respectful and responsible for our guest teacher, Mrs. Doyle.  She had nothing but nice things to say about our group!  All things that I know of course!  This group is wonderful!  
 
A few notes from Mrs. Doyle...
She didn't get each student a personal word for his/her spelling list this week.  We will begin that part of our spelling list on Friday for our next list!  Thanks for understanding!
 
Mrs. Kienow will be joining our class once every two weeks for lessons on using our brains in different ways.  Your child's papers came home today from some of the learning activities that she guided our class through last Thursday.  Please let me know if you have any questions regarding her time with us.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed the story Stellaluna and discussed what empathy means.  
*  We learned more information about the U.S. Constitution.
*  We wrote in our Writer's Workshop notebook on personal narratives.
*  We used calculators to repeat a pattern in counting.  (The equal key was used as a repeat key.)
*  We practiced a lock down drill.  (Not really a highlight of the day, but a necessity for our day.)
*  We shared our acts of kindness with Mrs. Luskey.  (So awesome!) We began using our "Shout Out" cards within our classroom.
 
Glad to be back, but can't wait to put my foot up tonight!  
Enjoy your night!  

 

9-20-17:  

Good afternoon!  Our classroom smells delicious!  We are so excited to do some sampling!

 
Please remember that I will be out beginning tomorrow until next Tuesday.  Please let the office know of any schedule changes for your child during this time.  Thanks!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We observed and examined our apples before doing any cutting.  We then cut the apples into little pieces to begin the process of making applesauce.  We added the apples to the crock pots to begin cooking.  We also had science work to do with this as we used the scientific method to guide us throughout the day as we watched the apples change.
*  We enjoyed the tall tale story of Johnny Appleseed.
*  We beat our reading stamina time!  We are able to read for over 10 minutes with no interruptions.
*  We met with Ms. Geddes and her class in their classroom today for our first Writer's Workshop time.
*  We explored calculators today in math to find different ways to reach a target number.
*  We will enjoy our homemade applesauce soon!  
 
Have a fantastic night!  We'll chat next week!  

 

9-19-17:  

Hello!

 
Quick check in on our day!  It was a great day!

Highlights of our day...
*  We enjoyed the stories of Miss Nelson is Back and Miss Nelson Has a Field Day.  Ask you child about the surprise ending of the second book.
*  We listed what responsibility means to us as learners. We also kept tallies of all of the times we were working together in our classroom responsibly.
*  We met with reading buddies to enjoy the first two poems in our poetry folder.
*  We worked with Ms. Geddes and her class during our Reader's Workshop time to think about how chapter books want to be read.  We looked at the chapter names to determine how each chapter might like to be read.  These little steps in our reading helps us to grow our reading beanstalks!  
*  We worked through three rotations in math workshop.  Our focus today was a variety of skills like telling time, counting coins, and addition facts.  (Look for your child's math box pages coming home today.)
 
Have a fantastic night!  I'm excited for our science day tomorrow with apples!  

9-18-17:  

Hello!

 
Well, today was our first indoor recess!  It's always tricky because we need the moving break that outdoor recess provides!  I hope your child has a chance to move his/her body tonight!  
 
A few notes for you...
There was a 2nd grade teacher error on the September calendar!  Homecoming is incorrectly marked on the calendar.  Sorry!  Please note that the actual date for Homecoming is October 6th.  
 
Last call for our $5 party money.  If you are able to contribute and haven't done so, this money provides the fun at our holiday parties.  Thanks!   
 
APEX Fun Run was a success!  All outside payments should be handed in by Wednesday, September 20th.  An envelope was provided on Friday for payments!  Thanks again for your support!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We established our classroom rules.  (Be nice to everyone and everything...the Golden Rule.  Do your best!/No excuses!  Be positive!  Be proud of yourself, your family, your class, and your school.)
*  We enjoyed the stories Miss Nelson is Missing and A Quiet Place.
*  We wrote in our Life Books.
*  We met for the first time with Ms. Geddes and her class for Reader's Workshop.  Our lesson's focus was on not only choosing what we read as 2nd graders, but choosing how a book wants to be read.  Ask your child what book he/she read during stamina today and what was decided for how that book wanted to be read. 
*  We continued to work on analog clocks and number grids for math.
 
What a gloomy day!  It's a perfect night for your child to read to you, or for you read to your child.  Happy Reading!  

9-15-17:  

Good afternoon!  We had a great first 5-day week!  Like I've said before, I adore your children!  We've had an impressive week of building routines and rituals.  We've also gotten to know one another even better and have managed to squeeze in some learning along the way too!

 
Grab your calendars:
*  Wednesday, October 4th is picture retake day.  If you'd like to have your child's picture retaken, please send back the original picture packet on that day.  
*  Our first spelling list is underway.  Spelling does look different in 2nd grade.  Please contact me at any time that you have questions or concerns.  If at any time you feel like your child's list isn't a good match for him/her, please let me know.  We can always adjust accordingly.  Our spelling "test" will be on Thursday, September 21st.  New lists will come home on Fridays!  (Our classroom webpage will house the spelling words each week too should your child's list get lost or not make its way home.) http://www.npaschools.org/spelling-list-7
*  I will be out for surgery from the 21st-25th.  Kathy Doyle will be here for me on those days.  I will try to check email a bit, but please contact the office regarding pick-ups or changes in your child's schedule.  Thanks for understanding!
 
Here's a peek at our day...
*  We took our first spelling practice.  We successfully created our own personal spelling lists.  We are working on reading and writing words with short vowels.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jh11mx9tF9o
*  We practiced reading with a partner.  
*  We enjoyed a greeting for morning meeting in the Czech language.
*  We completed all three rotations for math workshop.  We embedded IXL into our rotations today.  Use your child's back page in his/her planner to find the login/password information for IXL.  Your child may work on IXL at home at any time you see fit. We have IXL for math and language practice. Thanks!  
*  We danced like crazy at the POLKA FEST!  Thanks to those family members that could make it!  So much fun!  
 
Have a great weekend!  

9-14-17:  

Good afternoon!

 
What an amazing day!  The Fun Run is just that...so much fun!  We had an absolute blast during our time with the Apex Team.  Needless to say, we were very worn out when we finished.  We cooled down with water and a freezie.  Please see the note coming home with your child today regarding the fundraising part of all of this!  I hope your child enjoyed it as much as my own daughters did!  Feedback to Mr. Giesen on this fundraiser is appreciated!
 
Fall pictures are coming home today.  Stay tuned for retake day if needed.  
 
We will begin spelling for our 2nd grade year tomorrow.  Spelling looks different than it did in 1st grade.  We do take a pretest, we do create lists that are tailored for our own learning, and we will take a final test.  We will pretest on Fridays of the week and take our final test the following Thursday.  This will allow a little more practice time at school and home!  I know weeknights fly by!  Please let me know if you have any questions when you see your child's list come home tomorrow.  Thanks!
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We ran like crazy for the Fun Run.
*  We enjoyed the story Ruby's Wish.
*  We practiced in our handwriting books.
*  We set up our expectations for "Rockin' Partner Reading".
*  We continued to practice time telling on an analog clock.
*  We taught Mr. Bachmeier's and Mrs. Clark's 2nd graders how to polka.
*  We enjoyed time together!
 
Our polkafest is scheduled for 3:00 tomorrow in the main gym.  Join us if you can!  Have a wonderful night!  

9-13-17:  

To prepare for tomorrow's Fun Run, please see the following note from our Apex leader:  We want the Fun Run to be an awesome community event that supports Falcon Ridge, and supports the students! Tell students to bring grandma and grandpa, cousins, neighbors, all are welcome! We've even had parents in the past make signs cheering on their son or daughter. It's a ton of fun. Just have them check-in at the front office. Our Fun Run will be at the Trojan Stadium at 9:45.  
 
If you'd like to send sunscreen/apply it before school, that would be great.  Students will get their t-shirts tomorrow before the run.  They are "sleeping" in our classroom tonight.  The weather looks a little warm.  No worries!  We will have water stations set up around the stadium, but students can bring their water bottles if that is their preference.  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We built our reading stamina to eight minutes!  Success!  (That was no walking or talking...only reading!)
*  We completed our personal hopes and dreams for school.  Ask your child what he/she decided on for the h and d.  
*   We began brainstorming our classroom rules by focusing on our school rules of respect, effort, attitude, and pride.  
*  We enjoyed the stories Officer Buckle and Gloria and A Day's Work.  
*  We created a list of ideas that readers do every time they are reading.  (Read just right books, reread books, use reading strategies to solve unknown words, take care of books, connect to stories, make pictures in our minds, think about what we are reading, and reread from the time before)
*  We logged into Chromebooks to try IXL math for just a bit!
 
What a great day!  It was another hot one, but we didn't let that stop our learning!  

9-12-17:  

Good afternoon!  It was a hot day here at Falcon Ridge.  We can't seem to get the temperature right so dressing your child in clothing appropriate for the outdoor weather may be helpful.  It was a toasty one inside our classroom.  

 
A few notes to pass along to you...
Tomorrow for hot lunch is kid's choice.  Here is the menu that was chosen by FR students.  
Italian Dunkers
Mashed potatoes
Strawberries
Watermelon
Slushie cup
 
Our Fun Run for Apex is scheduled from 9:45-10:45 on Thursday.  We are able to still take pledges for our run up to Friday.  Please see the note from our Apex leader Nik Nak:  "Just a reminder of the Pie in the Face challenge (any student that jumps $3/lap tonight gets to pie an Apex member in the face), and let them know to Do Your Best!"  Also, anything helpful that you'd like to send along to school for the Fun Run is welcome.  Ex., sunscreen, extra water, hats, visors
 
Highlights from our day today...
*  We completed our Fall Assessments by taking our reading computer check-in.
*  We learned how to polka!
*  We build our reading stamina by reading our "just right" books from our book boxes.
*  We enjoyed the story Enemy Pie.
*  We role played using our classroom "Peace Poster".  (I feel...., I want..., I'll try...)  This tool helps for students to peacefully solve problems on their own.  Ask your child about how it works!  
 
Have a cool night!  

9-11-17:  

A few calendar items for you for this week:
Tuesday, September 12th, is our "Computer Check-in" for Reading.  We will be in the computer lab from 10:15-11:00 to complete this assessment.  A good night's sleep and a healthy breakfast really benefit us for mornings like these!
 
Thursday, September 14th, is our Apex Fun Run.  Please register your child for a free t-shirt that can will be given out at school on Thursday morning for our run at 9:45-10:45.
 
Friday, September 15th, 2nd grade will be enjoying our Polka Fest in the main gym.  This is a time when my uncle and great uncle come to share their musical talents with us and play some polkas for us to listen and dance to.  We are excited!  (Mrs. Luskey will be giving a crash course this week to teach 2nd graders how to polka!)
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We established our morning meeting expectations.
*  We enjoyed the story Hooway for Wodney Wat.  This story helped us to understand assertion.  I challenged your child to show assertion in at least one way today.  Ask your child what he/she did to practice this today!
*  We met with our Apex friend, Squishy.  Today's lesson was on empathizing.  To empathize for others we must stop, take a breath, and try to understand.  We must put ourselves in others' shoes.  
*  We worked with bills of different values.  ($1, $10, $100)
*  We continued working on our own hopes and dreams for 2nd grade.
*  We enjoyed our extra recess that we earned through Apex with Squishy.

9-8-17:  

Hello!  What a great week!  We are really getting into the routine of things.  I adore your kids!  

 
A few reminders:
If you have turned in your $5.00 party money, thanks so much!  If you are able to contribute to our holiday party fund and haven't yet done so, feel free to send cash or check to school with your child.  This money helps to cover snacks and activities for our Harvest Party, Winter Party, and Valentine Party.  Thanks so much!
 
We will taking our second FAST Assessment/"Computer Check-in" on September 12th for Reading.  
 
We have practiced a fire drill, bus evacuation, and a code red already.  That's a lot of drills if I say so myself.  The class rocked them all!
 
Terrible timing of things, however I will be having foot surgery on September 21st.  I will need to leave a bit early on Monday, September 14th for an appointment.  I will be out after my surgery on the 21st, 22nd, and 25th.  Again, I'm so sorry for the terrible timing within our school year.  Mrs. Doyle will be my guest teacher for the time that I will be out.  I will also have another post-op appointment on October 10th, where I will be out for the afternoon.  Thank you so much for understanding.  I do get to come back to school in a lovely boot.  Although I'm not really sure it will fit my fashion style! 
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We used t-shirts to show books that are just right, too hard, and too easy.  Ask your child about our activity. 
*  We met with a partner to practice the 5-finger rule for reading.  While reading one page from a book, if 0-1 words are unknown, the book may be too easy.  If 2-3 words are unknown, the book is actually just right.  If 4-5 words on a page are unknown, the book may be too hard.  We use our fingers to keep track.  
*  We met with our Apex friend and discussed being teachable.  Step 1:  Realize there is something to learn.  Step 2:  Open your eyes to it.  Step 3:  Be wise.  We also earned an extra recess with "Squishy" on Monday at 3:00 for raising money for our classroom.  Thanks for donating to this fundraiser!
*  We completed our three rotations of math workshop.  We focused on odd/even numbers, using an analog clock, and solving addition number models.  Thanks to Mrs. Cloutier for joining us today!
*  We enjoyed Applemando's Dreams to begin thinking about our own hopes and dreams for the school year.  
 

9-7-17:  

Hello!  Another great day!  This group has my heart already!

Highlights of our day...
*  We built our reading stamina by enjoying some books from our book boxes.  We made it to 2 min. and 45 sec. before walking/talking began.  I know each day we will grow stronger at this.  Our "read to self" reminders are to pick and stick to one spot, take our book boxes with us, find a double bubble space, have a book with words (Not an I Spy or Where is Waldo? book), and read from the beginning of our time to the end of our time.  
*  We were introduced to new brain teaser activities that we get to enjoy right at the beginning of our days together.  
*  We continued to work with analog clocks.
*  We met with our Apex friends.  The focus today was I for INSPIRE.  (Be charged up.  Be positive.  Be inspired by ourselves too.)  
*  We discussed our take-a-break spots within the classroom.  The good news is that take-a-breaks do not mean that we are in trouble.  They allow us to think about things and come back ready to work!  I really encourage all students to put themselves into a take-a-break once sometime soon.  Encourage your child to try it out!  It allows for a fresh start at something!  
*  We enjoyed the stories We Are in a Book! and Up North at The Cabin.

9-6-17:  

Our Falcon Ridge free family picnic is scheduled for tonight from 5:30-7:00.  I will be working the early shift of handing out food, but I hope to see you there.  It's always a fun event and allows us the opportunity to be a Falcon Ridge family!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We added a picture of our "just right" books from our book box into our SeeSaw folders.  Check it out!  Thanks to Mrs. Luskey's mom (Mrs. Sticha) for coming in to help us do that.  My mom will be volunteering each Wednesday in our classroom.  So if you hear her name, you'll know who your child is talking about!
*  We took our Math FAST test from 10:15-11:00.  
*  We enjoyed a moving break outside after testing.  We spent about 15 minutes on the playground.
*  We shared our Me Bags.
*  Our Apex message today was about no excuses.  Why do people make excuses?  1.  Things are too challenging.  2.  It's not fun what we are asked to do.  3.  We have the wrong behavior about it.  Trying our best and to keep trying were the important messages from our Apex friends today!
*  We did our first day of three rotations for math workshop.  We started a number scroll on our own at our desks.  We met in small group with Mrs. Luskey to practice time telling on an analog clock.  We enjoyed our math game binders with a partner to play a math game.  Congrats!  This is an amazing accomplishment for it only being our fifth day of school.
*  We enjoyed the story Swimmy.  Ask your child what cooperation means.  

 

9-5-17:

A few notes for you...

 

*  Apex Fun Run is a fundraiser where neighbors, family members, and friends can pledge money towards individual laps run by our 2nd graders to raise funds for Falcon Ridge Elementary.  Not only does the event promote physical fitness but also leadership and pride in ourselves, school, and community.  This new fundraiser replaces our previous fundraiser, Chip Shoppe. 

 
All students received a lanyard with their login information for the run.  Your second grader should log in to their account to begin fundraising.  From the parent side, you can share information about the fundraiser through email, Facebook, or Twitter. Of course there are incentives for fundraising landmarks, which means motivation for the students.  Know that you are not required to do fundraising, but your child will still be able to participate in the event, get a t-shirt (indicate size on the Apex site when you login), and be a part of the events leading up to our run!
 
*  Tomorrow (9-6) our class will be taking the FAST Assessment on math.  This will take place from 10:15-11:00.  Mrs. Luskey never calls it the "FAST Assessment" as then it indicates that the only way to take this is fast!  Wink!  I call it our computer check-in.  This is just a baseline data point and only one collection of data.  We use it as a guide, but know your child better with the classroom performance.  Thanks for helping your child to get a good night sleep and to eat a healthy breakfast!
 
*  Morning snacks/working snacks are working wonderfully!  Continue to send two snacks for you child if he/she needs that extra one!
 
*  Look for the reminder coming home today with your child regarding the Falcon Ridge Family Picnic tomorrow night from 5:30-7:00 right at our school.  I look forward to seeing you there!  
 
Highlights of our day...
*  We began our first writing in our LifeBooks about our families.
*  We discussed why it is that we pick the books we do.  "I Pick"  I = I pick out a book.  P = Purpose:  Why do I want to read this book?  I = Interest:  Is it interesting?  C = Comprehend:  Do I understand it?  K = Know:  Do I know most of the words?
*  We built our reading stamina with our books from our book boxes.
*  We met with the APEX team to discuss uniqueness.  "It would be a shame if we were all the same."
*  We reviewed the value of pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters.  (Any coin practice provided at home would be appreciated!  It was a great challenge for us today!)
*  We viewed Mrs. Luskey's "Me Bag" and asked questions about what our personal "Me Bags" can contain for our turn this week.  
*  We enjoyed Three Cheers for Tacky.  
 

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Your partner in education,

Mrs. Luskey