Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Classroom Notes


It was another busy and productive week for Team 20!  In addition to the usual routines, kids began conferencing with partners and myself about their pen pal letter rough drafts. During math, kids are continuing to model multiplication and division. We have also been playing around some with algebra during our daily warm-up. Kids understand the equal sign as a symbol meaning equality or “is the same as,” rather than just compute. Our most recent algebra layer is solving for variables. For example, a + a + 4 = 16 and 35 = b + b + b + 5. 

On Friday, as an extension of our Outdoor Classroom study about form and function, kids worked with partners to create a phytoplankton using modeling clay, toothpicks, foil, straws, pennies, and styrofoam with the goal of having their creation remain neutrally buoyant when placed in water. Photos of our phytoplankton lab are on our blog. 

For read aloud, we finished Shiloh.  Marty finally got his beloved dog and came to understand mean ol' Judd Travers in a new light. “Nothing is as simple as you guess.” 

Thank you to Mr. Colvin for teaching in room 20 while I was at a district meeting last Thursday. In addition to the usual routines and some songs with Mr. Colvin’s guitar, kids met up with their first grade buddies.
We have a field trip planned for the morning of Thursday, October 27th. We will walk to Reed College to visit Cooley Gallery. Reed’s Outreach Coordinator, Gregory MacNaughton, has invited us to attend an exhibition of work by Brad Kahlhamer. Parents/family are welcome to join us for this no cost walking field trip. We will leave Lewis on October 27th at 9:00 and return at around 11:30. If you would like to join, please send me an email ( or return the bottom section of today’s enclosed memo by Friday, October 14th, because I need to give the names of all parents/family to the office by that date. If you plan to attend and have not completed a PPS volunteer background check in the past two years, please do so at this link:

Another volunteer opportunity is with our RecordingBooks Project. For this project, the kids of Team 20 are recording books using their Chromebooks for our buddies in Mrs. Logue’s first grade. Kids have chosen a book, practiced to become more fluid and expressive with their reading, and are getting ready to record. If you are free on Friday mornings between 8:45 and 9:45, you are welcome to work with kids as they record their book in the library. Please send me an email or return the bottom section of today’s enclosed memo. Again, please visit the PPS volunteer background check link listed above if you need to do so.

Please follow us on Twitter @LewisRoom20 and at for regular updates and photos!


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