August 2013

Dear Families,

Well, we made it through August.  Actually, we have almost made it all the way through September.  Of course, I am still working through some testing but it is extra testing, that I feel will help me offer the best instruction to my class.  To some, it may seem like, I make more work for myself but I really am just trying to make my life easier on me in the long run.

In fourth grade, we have to go to lunch last.  This is taking some getting use to because my tummy is not hungry at 1pm, it’s hungry long before that.  So, we decided to have a snack around 11am or so, to tie us over until 1pm.  If you wanted to send up snacks please send things that are pre-packaged.  This way it is easier and doesn’t create another job for me to do during “teach time”.   I usually place them in their Daily 5 baskets at the end of the day or prior to the student coming to class.  This is a lot easier on me and the students.   Also, think in bulk so the snacks last through the entire week.

I am sure you have heard our classes are very full this year.  This only means that I will need a lot of assistance from you.  I want to make sure each student gets some one on one time, because I need to work independently with each child no matter their levels.  If you are available to come and listen to a student read or work with them on math facts that would be GREAT. Parent involvement is still encouraged in 4th grade and WELCOMED!  At this time, we have an extra teacher in 4th who is rotates through our classes and working with small groups of students but still, we can only do so much. WE NEED YOU TOO.

Many of you may be wondering about homework and tests.  We will have weekly Alpha + test covering the weekly new skill in both Reading and Math.  Spelling tests are also on the schedule for each week for now, but will change as I identify specific skills to focus on.  This means a group of students will test one week and the other group will have their test the following week.

Homework is strictly up to you!  Please Quiz them on their spelling words and math facts!!!!!  On Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday there will be some kind of Math to do for class points.  I assure you it will not be stuff that needs to be finished because they wasted class time.  It will be things to practice on at home. Unfinished work will be finished at school (during recess).  Thursday is “Just Tweet About It” day and students will be posting on our class Twitter about things they learned from this week.

I think we are off to a great start and I am looking forward to working with each and every one of you.   Also, I am working on a Technology Night for our Families. So stay tuned and be prepared to come up and be amazed!


Professional Day is September 27th (No School)

I am hoping to have the Technology Night on this day.

Fall Break is scheduled for October 17 & 18

Oct. 17th is my backup date for the Technology Night.

Parent Teacher Conferences are scheduled for October 22 & 24 from 4pm to 7pm.

FYI: I am that teacher that will need to visit with every family prior to those dates or on those dates.  Phone Conferences are not available.  I need to see you in person. If you have a crazy schedule please let me know now when you can meet with me.  I am very flexible but I need to see you, in person.

Thank you!

Tina O’Neal