Dear Elmore families,

We have rolled over into a new calendar year and though I’m still getting used to writing 23, the students are embracing several new learning opportunities in the new year! We began new writing and reading units with a focus on informational text, in math each grade dove into some new concepts, we began a new Global Citizenship unit with a focus on History, we began learning some new songs for our concert (more information to come), and in art we decided to make our own snowflakes since mother-nature isn’t giving us any.

We began the week with a focus on reading non-fiction text.  Students identified several text features found in non-fiction books and then worked with a partner to go on a text feature scavenger hunt.  We also began our next writing unit with a focus on writing informative text.  Students began with generating a list of expert topics they could write about to teach.  The next day, they chose a topic from their list and began planning their writing.  Last Friday students learned how to write a good introduction and worked on writing their introductions.  This proved to be a challenging exercise for many, but students persevered through the process.  

In math first graders set out to solve word problems involving addition and subtraction using a number bond model, writing an equation to match the problem, and solving to find the answer.  Second graders began with comparing numbers within 100 and finding the difference between the numbers.  They ended with decomposing 3 digit numbers into expanded form.  Third graders began learning the concepts of division (sharing in equal groups).

We also began a new Global Citizenship unit with a focus on history.  We started by defining the terms “past”, “present”, and “future”.  We had several discussions about how each of these moments in time influence or are influenced by each other.  Then we spent some time relating the past to our own lives and the lives of the people in our family.  Finally, students worked in a small group to sort pictures of items from the past and present and we did a museum walk to compare our groupings.  

I’m very excited to let you know we will be having our first concert in three years!  I have tentatively planned for the concert to take place the evening of Wednesday, March 15th at the Elmore Town Hall.  This is a quieter time of the year between sports seasons and after our winter break.  I’m excited about the songs we will be performing as they will have a very positive global message.  I will let you know more details as we get closer to the date.

We are beginning the new year with a focus on 3 dimensional art.  We may not have any snow outdoors, but that didn’t stop us from making snowflakes in the classroom!  Students made snowflakes using cutout wooden shapes.  First we learned about a well-known, Vermonter, William Bentley (known by many as “Snowflake Bentley”). He spent his entire life living in Jericho, Vermont, where he photographed and studied snowflakes. We spent time this week designing and assembling the pieces.  This week we will finish the project by painting and decorating them.


Diane Nicholls 

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