January 29th Newsletter

Ana and Mary’s Newsletter – January 29, 2016

Classroom Celebrations

Throughout the year we, as a community of readers, have explored mental strategies that help us read a text more deeply, more aware of our thinking. We have noticed questions and connections, visual images we make in our minds, and reflections of our heart. Now we are working on “determining importance” – thinking through a story with the intention of capturing what might be the most important ideas we want to take with us. Reading the African tale The Blind Hunter allowed us to delve into many important questions and ideas such as “How does a man who has been unkind earn the forgiveness of his friend?” and “Why do people fight each other?” It has given us much food for thought!

Our study of Nobel Peace Laureate Wangari Maathai has taken us to her return to Kenya after her studies abroad. We learned that within the six years of her absence, the Kenyan landscape had been intensely deforested, causing lack of fresh water, lack of firewood, lack of food, lack of habitat. In spite of her distress, Wangari Maathai stands strong, remembering the tale of the hummingbird, and begins to nurse seedling trees. Soon other women join her effort. To be continued….!

On Monday, Raina, our social worker, presented a special lesson to our students, reminding them of the importance of personal space. A hilarious book and visuals like hula hoops and a space saber supported her message.

And last but not least, we concluded the week with the amazing Hoops for Heart! Many thanks to Rosie and Sam for creating this annual event in support of heart health!

Looking Ahead

  • Wed., Feb. 3 – 100th day of School and Community circle
  • Mon., Feb. 8 – Math Night, 5:15-6:15 pm
  • Thurs., Feb. 11 – Valentine’s Day Celebration
  • Fri., Feb. 12 – Mon., Feb. 15 – President’s Day Weekend – No School


100th Day – this year we are asking Stars and Moons (first and second graders) to bring in collections of 100 items. Whatever items your child chooses (toothpicks, rubber bands, little toy cars, cheerios, pennies), they need to be small enough to fit into a gallon-size bag. If possible, you might consider helping your child bundling items in groups of ten. Keep the project simple by finding things that are readily available in your household. Students will share their collections during math.

Math Night – Mon. Feb. 8, 5:15-6:15pm – During Math Night, students will teach you math games we play to practice math skills. In the second half of the evening, we will share with you how we teach mathematical concepts and strategies, why we teach them in that particular way, and how you can support your child.

After school garden committee for kids!
 “The Garden Club is seeking students to be a part of a Garden to Cafeteria Committee! This committee will be responsible for creating GTC exhibits and delicious food for fellow students! We will meet the first Wednesday of every month after school! The Garden to Cafeteria program is a unique and special part of JCOS and we need our school’s most culinary creatives to part of it! Contact Gaetane at Faceinaspoon@gmail.com
The club starts directly after school and pick-up is at 4:30pm.  A light snack will be provided.  The club starts this week!
Parent volunteers are appreciated too!



Ana and Mary




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