October 1 Week at a Peek

Dear students and families,
Thank you everyone for a fantastic and interesting week 4!  Thank you to all families who responded so quickly to pick up students when we had the surprise water main break on Thursday.  I look forward to meeting those of you who are able to make it to our “meet the staff pizza night” on Monday.   🙂 
Happily, we got outside on Wednesday to work on our sketching.  Beautiful student sketches went home on Wednesday!  We devoted much of Friday to expanding our understanding of Orange Shirt Day.  A few student reflections are included in the slide show video below.

Student assessments

Grade 4s completed their “Insight” tests this week.

We continue with one-on-one reading assessments and hope to finish by the end of this week.  Once complete, I will program to specific student reading needs.   🙂

Math fact daily practice

In October, our class math fact focus is addition.

  • Beginning Monday, we will settle into a class routine that includes a daily 2 minute math fact quiz to increase student speed and automaticity with math facts.
  • As well, we will engage in daily “Number Talks” to encourage flexibility and fluency with efficient mental math strategies.
  • These daily activities (math fact quiz, math body break, number talk and math fact home practice) are a small but integral part of our daily math routine.
  • Home addition practice books go home to stay home on Wednesday or Thursday this week.
  • The home practice books include the exact quizzes the students do in class.  There are 2 practice pages for each quiz.
  • When the home practice book arrives at home, I ask that students prepare by practicing for each quiz the night before (2-10 minutes).
  • I ask that parents please sign the nightly practice sheet in student planners.

Normally, I have a class information night with a math focus in the beginning of September.  Unfortunately, with all the extra time and energy it takes to acclimatize to a new building, a parent information night in September was just not possible for me this year.  Please contact me with any questions or concerns about math home practice.

Above all else – home practice should be fun for you and your child!  If it is not, do contact me and we will find a solution together.

To find out more about the math research project that led me to these teaching strategies, please feel free to watch the video below where my research partner and I respond to questions about our project.  Click to find our final research project report here.

Spelling this week

exemplary student spelling test sample this week!
  • We are beginning this year with 3 different spelling groups.  Spelling groups are flexible and I will move students to another group when necessary to make sure they have the right amount of challenge.
  • Students will be issued coloured spelling booklets that contain 6 weeks of lessons – the 6th lesson is a review lesson of the earlier 5 lessons.
  • Typically, I introduce spelling lists on Tuesday, students work on spelling assignments in class on Wednesday and assignments are due Thursday with tests on Thursday, also.
  • I dictate the sentences at the bottom of each list to students during the test.
  • Clear printing and spacing of letters is important to have others understand your writing.  A few students who are new to English will work on printing during spelling time.

Here is a look at week 5’s spelling lists for those of you who like to prepare early.

Here’s a look at week 5 . . .

*Class Focus – speedy transitions!


  • Picture orders due to classroom teacher (unless you order online)
  • A1 math fact quiz today (no home practice required)
  • phys. ed. p.m.
  • student planners go home tonight – remember they come back every day!
  • meet the staff pizza night (6:00 – 7:30 p.m.)


  • A2 math fact quiz today (no home practice required)
  • arts ed. a.m.
  • phys. ed. p.m.
  • introduction to spelling words


  • A3 math fact quiz today (no home practice required)
  • library exchange a.m.
  • Pizza Hut hot lunch   😀
  • October home math fact practice books home today?  Remember to practice for A4 tonight.  Show mom and dad how to sign your planner page.


  • A4 math fact quiz
  • phys. ed. a.m.
  • Spelling lesson 1 assignments due; spelling lesson 1 tests
  • marble rewards p.m. (students with incomplete assignments will work on them during this time)


  • No school for students; professional development for staff
  • Remember Monday, October 8 is Thanksgiving Holiday – no school.  See you on Tuesday, October 9!

What are you thankful for?

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October 1 Week at a Peek
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