Monday, November 10, 2014

Monday Memo 11/10/14

Greetings Families!

Veteran's Day

The children did a great job writing lovely cards for veterans.  I sent them to the VA hospital in Jamaica Plain.  As your child may have told you, Veterans Day is special for me because my brother Lieutenant Colonel Brett Conaway served twice in Iraq, in 2000 and in 2004, with the military police.  I missed him, but that was nothing compared to the pain of separation from their father for my nephews (who were 4 and 6 the first time he was deployed) and my brave sister in law, and for my parents, who were very worried.  I think my poor mother lost twenty pounds the first month Brett was gone.  We are so lucky that he returned safely to us.  And I'm happy to report that my mother is now very healthy!

Social Studies

Our new focus is maps and globes.  We read Me on the Map and are beginning a project based on that book to understand our place in the world and the difference between our town and our state, our country and our continent, etc.


We are wrapping up our unit on place value and moving onto time and fractions.  The children are in the process of taking an assessment.  I will share the results with you shortly.

Baking Bread

You will receive (or may have already received) a request from our room parents for some help with our annual bread project.  Thanks for all of your help, and thanks to the room parents for coordinating the details for me so I didn't have to!

Have a great week!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Monday Memo 11/3/14

Happy November!

It's kind of nice to wrap up the Halloween hoopla.  Onto Thanksgiving!


Click here to access the November Homework Calendar.  We also have a new Sharing Schedule.  I am also introducing a Homework Rubric.  You received paper copies of all of these today.

Math Stations

Thank you so much to Marchella Lee, Elizabeth Kugler, Mrs. Yemin and Cathy Davies who have joined us for Math Stations.  It's great to have the help.

Field Trip

A huge thank you to our chaperones:  Henry Chow, Andrus Madsen, Jack Caulfield, Olga Dremov, and Lisa Moscoffian.  It was a full, exciting day at the Blue Hills, and the children loved having you there.

I also really appreciated everyone sending in supplies for the veggie skeletons.  You all made it so quick and easy to set up, and the children had fun working together.  There was hardly anything left; your kids eat their vegetables!!!  I'll send you the photos soon.


Just because the official conference season is over, that doesn't mean you can't contact me any time with questions, concerns, thoughts . . . We confer all year long here; that's what elementary school is all about.  Please always feel free to contact me.

That's all, folks.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Monday Memo 10/27/14

I heard that Movie Night was a blast.  We have a great PTO to put on these special community events.   I'm glad so many of you were able to come. 

Veggie Skeletons

We will celebrate Halloween on Thursday instead of Friday because Friday (God willing), we will be on a field trip.  The room parents told me they had secured all the vegetable donations.  Thank you!  Please send them in on Thursday.


We are working on place value.  The specific standards I am addressing include understanding that each digit in a three digit number represents a particular value of hundreds, tens, and ones.  Within that, children need to be able to compare large numbers using <, >, = symbols, and they also need to be able to represent numbers in base 10 blocks, in numerical form, and in expanded form, too.  Something fun to do to support your child in this work is to make up a "Mystery Number."  For example, "my number has a five in the tens place, a four in the hundreds place, and the digit in the ones place is the number of sides on a triangle."    


We had an exciting meeting with our buddies making positive/negative jack o'lanterns.  Hope you enjoyed the finished product!

Homeless Helpers

Emma and Ella did a fine job presenting their Service Learning Project at the assembly.  Please send in any new or gently used blankets to help the homeless this winter.  There will be a clearly marked box in front of the office for this purpose.

Field Trip

I will send a reminder on Thursday about the (knock on wood) field trip.  I feel like I'm jinxing it by even mentioning it!

Hope you survive the build up to Friday!  The excitement in palpable in our classroom.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Monday Memo 10/20/14

Thank you, Room Parents!

A great time was had by all at our class playground gathering this weekend.  Liane, Marchella, and Lauren did an amazing job organizing and planning this fun time.  I was thrilled to see so many of you there.

Field Trip (cross your fingers!)

Our trip to the Blue Hills will take place on Thursday, barring any unforeseen weather event.  Thank you so much for your quick turn around time in getting the revised permission slip back to me so promptly.  Luckily, all of the chaperones who were originally assigned to go can still attend on Thursday.  Thank you!


Your kids did a fabulous job leading the school in song this morning.  It's not easy to get up in front of everyone and sing!  I'm so proud of them.

Math Stations

I would love your help a couple of times a week during math.  You would help facilitate a math station involving a small group of kids doing some kind of problem solving work or playing a math game.  Here is the link to sign up to help.  Thank you!

Book Fair

Our class is scheduled to attend the Book Fair on Thursday from 2-2:30.  You may send money in with your child if you would like them to buy a book.  Or, you can tell them it's a great opportunity to browse.  The Book Fair will also be open during the HH Movie Night on Friday from 6-8PM.

Word Work

Every child is in a group two times per week working on word study.  You may see papers going home with word cards glued on the paper in certain categories.  This is our spelling program, using Words Their Way, which has children study word patterns to deepen their understanding of spelling and phonetic rules.  The traditional "studying" of the spelling words at home is not necessary, but you can support your child by asking them what types of words they are studying and what pattern the words fall into.  Click on this short video to watch a parent tutorial about this program.

Have a great week!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Monday Memo (Thursday Edition) 10/16/23

Field Trip (Third Time's a Charm!)

A new permission slip was sent home.  Please send it back by Friday.  Sorry for all of the rescheduling.

Our class will be leading a song for the school at Monday's assembly at 9AM if you would like to join us.

We won an award for picking up trash on the playground!

Let's Get Together, yeah, yeah, yeah
There is a gathering for our class on the Happy Hollow playground at 3PM on Saturday, organized by the room parents (thank you!).  Hope to see you there!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Monday Memo 10/6/14

Happy Monday!  Wasn't yesterday a perfect fall day?  We went apple picking.  Our tractor driver at Berlin Orchards drove the tractor with an apple balanced on his head!  Is that amazing???

Field Trip

We are so lucky to have so many people volunteer to be chaperones.  I'm sorry we can't bring all of you.  As promised, I put the names in a hat and chose randomly.  The five chaperones will be Lisa Moscoffian, Andrus Madsen, Liane Hage, Henry Chow, and Olga Dremov.

I'm very sorry to have to refuse so many generous volunteers.  Please remember there are two more field trips, and everyone is welcome to chaperone the field trip to Boston in May.


We did an experiment on Tuesday where your child worked with a thermometer to learn more about this important tool and how to measure temperature.  Children dipped a thermometer into cold water and then very warm water and read the subsequent temperatures.  Watching the mercury rise was fascinating!  Then we made our own paper thermometers, which are proudly on display in our classroom.

Today, we used another weather instrument--an anemometer!  We went outside and watched it whirl around.  It was rather thrilling!  Ask your child what an anemometer is used for.  Hopefully, they will know.

Have you heard about Chinese class on Fridays?  Ms. Li, a Happy Hollow parent, generously offers her time each week to give us a short Chinese enrichment lesson.  Your child can probably tell you the Mandarin words for some parts of the body, and he or she may be able to sing "Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes" in Chinese as well.  We are lucky to have this special learning opportunity each week.


We are finishing our unit on Addition and Subtraction Within 20 and moving onto Place Value.  Our class works in small groups during Math Stations twice a week, and I am looking forward to having you (yes, you!) join us.  Hopefully, some parents will be able to sign up to come in and help us during this fun, enriching learning time.  I will send a sign up link with next Monday's Memo.

Have a great week!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Monday Memo 9/29/14

I hope you had a great weekend.  It was like summer!


Thank you so much for signing up for conferences.  I'm really looking forward to our time together.  I have heard from most of you.  If you have not yet responded, please do so as soon as possible.  Here is the link.  Thank you.


The October Homework Calendar was sent home today.  If you need another copy, click here.  Remember that every assignment for the week, including the Reading Log, is due on Friday.  Thanks for your help.

The Monthly Message will be sent home tomorrow.  Do you like that?  The Monday Memo, the Monthly Message... I try to make it catchy :)  Please read it, write a short note back, and send it back to school on Wednesday.  One of our English Language Arts standards in second grade is to be able to use proper letter form, including using commas in greetings and closings of letters.  More importantly, building the skill of being able to recall an event or related events and adding relevant details to create a cohesive written piece is an important goal for us in second grade.  Thank you for your help with this.

Field Trip

We are very excited for our field trip on October 16.  The permission slip will be sent home tomorrow.  You can indicate on the form if you would like to chaperone.  I'll let you know right away if you are selected to be a chaperone.


We have had two meetings with our fourth grade buddies.  Our buddies this year are the kids in Ms. Moynihan's class.  The students interviewed each other at our first meeting and played a math game together at our second.  Next time, we'll do a fall craft.

That's all for now.  Please contact me anytime if you have any questions.  Have a good night!


Monday, September 22, 2014

Monday Memo 9/22/14

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend.  I loved seeing so many of you at Back to School Night.  You were a very kind audience and laughed at my jokes.


You should have received an email from me inviting you to sign up for a fall conference via signup genius.  Please let me know if you did not receive it or if you had trouble accessing it.


You can find the homework that was sent home today by clicking on the "Homework" tab on my blog.  Of course, your child has a copy of it in his/her folder as well.  I told the kids to put it in a prominent location (the refrigerator, perhaps?), so they can check it every day and see what they are supposed to do.  Your child will receive a new homework calendar for October next week.  The procedure is for the student to hold onto the calendar.  Every Friday, your child should bring the papers to school that were due that week, including the reading log, which is due every Friday.  I collect all the homework on Friday.  Thanks for your help.


We had lots of fun today doing an experiment about air pressure.  There were balloons flying around our room and many curious young scientists.  Ask your child about it!  This is part of our unit about weather.  Try to take a moment this week to look at the clouds with your child; after all, that's what meteorologists do.

If you observe Rosh Hashanah, I hope you have a lovely holiday.  Have a great week!


Monday, September 15, 2014

Monday Memo 9/15/14

Dear Families,

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend.

Back to School Night

Hope to see everyone from 7:00PM-7:30PM on Thursday.

Picture Day

Pictures will be taken on Thursday.  What a big day for me!  I need to look good for photos AND Back to School Night.  That's a tall order when you're in your forties :)   A form was sent home with your child today.  Everyone is supposed to fill out the order form even if you are not purchasing a package, as each child receives the class picture.  Thank you for your help with this.


A Book Log was sent home with your child today.  This should be filled out and returned on Friday.  This is the beginning of our weekly homework routine.


Numbers everywhere!  We have talked a lot about the math about ourselves:  our ages, the number of our birth month, the numbers in our addresses... A few years ago, I stopped discussing the digits in your phone number, as most children don't know those anymore.  My own children certainly don't.  Isn't that funny?

We are beginning the year with a unit on Number Combinations.  Even and odd numbers have been the focus of some of our introductory lessons.  Your child took a short pretest before we began the unit, and there will be a short post-test as well.  I will share that with you at our conference in October.


I have temporarily outlawed Pokemon cards.  Please do not allow your child to bring them to school.  They are causing a major distraction.  Thanks for your help with this.

I would write more, but I don't want to give it all away!  We have Back To School Night on Thursday! Much more to come!

Thank you!


Monday, September 8, 2014

Monday Memo 9/8/14

Good evening, Room 3 Families,

This is the Monday Memo. I try to send out an email every Monday. All emails will be posted on our blog for future reference. Some memos will be more interesting than others :)

Missing Items

Some people received the following note today:

A Note from Ms. Morrison…
Your child is missing the item(s) circled below.  Please send it in as soon as possible.  Thank you!
  • Blue emergency form
  • Student Handbook Acknowledgement (signed by student) (To find the handbook, follow this link:Student Handbook)
  • Parent Acknowledgement (of Handbook, signed by parent)
  • headphones
  • 5 Things in Bag assignment
AND the photo of your child doing something they like to do.  

If you did not receive this note from me, apparently you sent everything in already. Very impressive. Personally, I'm a little overwhelmed by the paperwork and emails coming at me from my own children. Tis the season!
Picture Day

Picture Day is on Thursday, September 18!  Please make sure your child brings a smile!  And more importantly, please make sure your child is present that day.  It's so sad to have someone missing from the official class photo. 

Back To School Night

Back to School Night is Thursday, September 18 as well.  My presentation in our classroom will be from 7:00-7:30PM.  Please do your best to make it to this important event.


Homework this week is for you!  A google form is being sent to you via email.  It's a Parent Interview to share information with me about your child.  Don't worry; our REAL homework program will start up next week.  We'll talk a lot about this on Back to School Night.

Thank you!  Please remember that you can contact me at any time with questions or concerns.

Miriam Morrison