February 19, 2018

Week of November 11th

As mentioned last week, you are invited to our celebration to mark the end of the trimester. We hope to see you in our classroom on Thursday, November 21st, from 2-3:30 p.m. We will perform our five Herbie Jones plays, and then share our writing with family members and anyone else who would like to hear it.

Everyone should continue to practice their lines this weekend at home. Please encourage a loud enough volume to be heard across the room!

You may have heard of the Common Core State Standards, which have been adopted by Oregon and many other states. The Oregon Department of Education has a parent toolkit online at http://www.ode.state.or.us/search/page/?id=3425 which explains the standards in greater depth than I will attempt here.

In order to correlate with the Common Core more closely, our intermediate team has revised our rubric for scoring writing. Nine traits encompassing Structure, Development, and Conventions are scored on a scale of 0-4, with three being grade level work.

Students will share their scores with you on Thursday. You may find that your student has earned scores lower than expected, but that is often due to the new standards being more rigorous in several areas than the previous state standards. Most students have shown quite a bit of growth since the first day of school, and we will work to continue that improvement.

We just received new messages from our EPals in Kenya this morning. Those students who got a message need to write one back this weekend. Please look it over before your child sends it, and make sure that it includes:

  • Capital letters at the beginning of every sentence, for proper nouns, the word I, the Dear in the greeting, and Sincerely or other closing
  • Proper ending punctuation for every sentence
  • Commas at the end of the greeting and closing of a letter
  • Correct spelling for words that are in their student dictionaries

I suggest that students answer any questions that were asked, tell a bit about their daily life, and perhaps describe some Thanksgiving traditions.

We are still in need of white sheets and/or pillowcases for an art project. If you have any that you no longer want, please send them in.


  • Thursday, November 21st – End of First Trimester
  • Thursday, November 21st – Celebration in our classroom 2-3:30 p.m.
  • November 28th-29th – Thanksgiving Holiday
  • December 20th-January 5th – Winter Break
About Susan Handy