Happy New Year! As an educator I have always had two new years in my life, one in January and the other the first day of school. Both are times where I am looking at what children know and what they need to learn. In January, like September, we give the MAP test in English Language Arts and Mathematics. MAP results will be attached to student report cards which are coming home on January 28h. We expect our students’ scores to go up by at least five points from September. If a child’s score does not improve we immediately bring together a team of teachers to discuss what factors may be keeping the student from growing. After we determine what needs to be put in place for the students we start doing things differently. The one important thing we can’t change for our students is their attendance. We need your help. Our students can’t learn if they aren’t in school. As we monitor student progress we are looking at attendance and poor attendance may result in the need to repeat the grade. We want our students at Newton School to have the knowledge and skills they need to make their dreams a reality.
January 16th is an early release day. Students are dismissed at 11:55. Schools are closed on the 19th and 20th. January 19th is Martin Luther King Day and January 20th is a professional development day. Please make the necessary childcare arrangements. Please remember to read to your child every day.
Freedom Credit Union Banking
Early Dismissal 11:55
No School/ Martin Luther King Day
No School / Teacher In-service
All School Meeting 8:30
Kindergarten Team News
Kindergartners have been busy working and learning together in all our classrooms. At this time of the year the children are enjoying many games to increase their phonological awareness. This includes recognizing sounds within words, syllables and rhyming words. We practice “Turtle Talk” every day where we sound out words v e r y
s l o w l y.
And, of course, kindergartners never tire of listening to and discussing their favorite stories! These early learning activities are the foundation on which we build strong reading, writing and math skills. Please encourage your child to share their favorite stories with you at home.
As we continue exploring the Five Senses, the children will enjoy a taste-testing activity with all three Kindergarten classes together! This is always a fun and engaging way to become familiar with our sense of taste.
Please remember to LABEL all of your child’s winter gear. If something is lost, it is much easier to find if it has a name inside.
Wishlist: Large glue sticks, Clorox wipes, tissues
Happy Holidays from the First Grade Team!
We know this time of year is hectic for all families… Managing our classroom expectations is essential- please make sure your child continues to complete their homework assignments, brings all necessary winter clothing gear, and gets plenty of rest!
The month of December has been busy with lots of work in reading, writing, addition and subtraction. We are working on reading fluency and addition fact fluency to twelve. Our plans for the New Year include building upon our current literacy and math skills. Please practice reading with your child every night- read to them and listen to them read to you. Talk about the story to check-in on comprehension. Have fun practicing addition math facts orally- in the car, at the dinner table, and before bed!
Enjoy your break with your terrific First Graders. See you in 2015!
Ms. Warren, Ms. Hayes, Mrs. Brown & Mrs. Purinton
Wishlist: tissues, clorox wipes
Second Grade News
December has been an action-packed month for second grade! We took an amazing field trip to Northampton to see parts of the Pioneer Valley Ballet’s performance of, “The Nutcracker.” The second grade classes all worked together to make gingerbread houses. A big “thank you” to those parents who helped out!
In Math we completed Topic 5, Place Value to 100 and have moved on to Topic 6, Mental Addition. We are discovering strategies for adding double-digit numbers, using our hundreds chart, ten frames, and mental math. We are focusing on multiples of ten and solving problems by looking for a pattern. These new skills require that we are really strong with our addition and subtraction math facts, so any help you can give your students at home is appreciated.
In Language Arts, some of our students are working on fairy tales, and some are being introduced to the concept of “scarcity.” Students who participate in the SPIRE program are progressing nicely through a new concept each week, and we are all recognizing how words sound when they contain an r-controlled vowel.
In Writing, we have completed an opinion essay, a thank you letter for our field trip, and most recently, detailed instructions on how to complete a task. Our winter bulletin boards are filled with our creative writing and artwork.
The second grade team is looking forward to celebrating the holidays with family and friends before beginning a new year! We wish you the very best and will see you next year!
Ms. Sherry, Ms. McIver, and Mrs. Pecoy
Third Grade News
Congratulations to the following students for their achievements in READING and MATH!!!
Have a wonderful holiday!! Students be sure to read everyday!!!
SCHOOL ADJUSTMENT COUNSELOR
Identifying and naming feelings are an important part of childhood development, especially at the elementary school level. Children need to learn to be able to name their emotions so they can express their feelings in a way that can be understood by peers and adults alike. In turn, this enables them to identify how others are feeling by reading body language, including facial expressions, which allows them to empathize with others. These skills are something I have been teaching and practicing with students at Newton since October. There are many ways to make this fun, including playing games such as “Feelings Charades” where someone acts out a feeling while others try to guess the emotion based on body language and facial expressions (this was a favorite among students). There are many websites to help parents reinforce these skills at home by offering a variety of activities and games to play with your children. Two of my favorites are: csefel.vanderbilt.edu and sesamestreet.org (Breathe! Think! Do!). Sesame Street also has a free app for Apple and Androids called Breathe! Think! Do! This is an interactive app that can be played in English and Spanish. It focuses on identifying when you feel angry or upset, then offers problem solving and calming down techniques for young children. There is also a parent section with free resources, tips and strategies to help your child. Printables, exercises and challenges to go along with this app can be found at seseamestreet.org. Please take the time to check out these sites and feel free to contact me with any questions you may have.
-Katie Irizarry, LICSW
Happy Winter, Families!
Thanks so much to everyone that was able to help with our fundraisers! With your help we raised over $3500! This goes to help fund our field trips and towards our new playground. The plan is to build our new playground this coming summer with help from community volunteers like you. We don't know the dates yet, but we will need volunteers to help build it, so keep that on your radar for this summer.
Due to the snow day earlier this month, we were not able to reschedule our December PTO meeting. Our next meeting is scheduled for Jan 6th at 5:30 pm in the library. Our following meetings are held on the 1st Tuesday of every month.
Have you been to our website lately? There are several new additions:
Fundraising Section - A quick list and info about year-round fundraisers and upcoming fundraisers!
Wishlists Section - Compiled from the info provided in the Newsletter about what classroom/specific grades need for supplies.
Please take a look, and let us know your thoughts. Visit www.newtonpto.weebly.com
Have a great break, and see you next year!
If your child is going to be late for school, please call
772-1370 ext. 0 or ext. 104 before 8:30 to order a lunch
Best BOXTOPS participation ever!
WE DID IT!
WAY TO GO BOX TOPS HEROS!
NEWTON SCHOOL has collected 5816 box tops which means together we raised $581.60 so far!
We met our goal of $500 for the entire 2014-2015 school year in 4 months! Thank you for all your hard work! Let’s keep clipping! For more collection sheets & info visit the PTO website Box Tops For Education section!
Winter Weather Reminders
Each day and each night.
To growing up right.
I'll read to a crowd.
If silent or loud.
By the fire or pool.
The more they are fed.
What it needs every day.