Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Monday Memo 12/18/17

Good evening!

I hope you are having a good week.  I know many of us have experienced some illness, and I hope everyone feels better soon.  Here's a notice from Mrs. MacDonald:
Mystery Reader

Thank you so much to Jonathan Hartford, our Mystery Reader on Friday.

Give Light

We were touched by all of your support at our "Give Light" presentation at the assembly.  The second graders sang beautifully, and their candle holders looked lovely.  I have a video of the performance, but for some reason, I can't load it on the blog.  I'm working on it!


Time to shine!  Students will complete an assessment on our fractions and time unit on Thursday.  I will share the results with you after vacation. 

Party in a Bag

I will send home a paper bag and a reminder about this tomorrow.  Here's the link if you need a reminder.

I hope everyone has a wonderful vacation week.  Happiest of holidays to all of you.  I'm sending you my best wishes for a healthy week.  See you in 2018!


Sunday, December 10, 2017

Monday Memo 12/11/17

Good morning!

Hoping to see you this morning at the Happy Hollow assembly.  The assembly begins at 9AM, and the second graders are scheduled to sing "Give Light."  You don't want to miss it!

Winter Gear

Wow!  We have snow!  Here is a reminder about winter gear once again:


Thank you for helping your child complete the compliment project.

Holiday Tradition Project

We are looking forward to these presentations next week.  Thank you for your help with this project. Here is the link if you need another copy.

Math Stations

Our Tuesday Math Stations time has changed to 8:45-9:45.  Here is the new link if you would like to sign up to help.  Email me and let me know which time you would like.  Thank you so much for your help.

Thank you, Mystery Reader Debbie Bressler!


We have begun our physical science unit on states of matter.  We conducted an experiment involving an Alka-Seltzer tablet, water, and a sealed plastic bag, enabling us to see states of matter changing in real time.  On Wednesday, our class will do an experiment in Ms. Niles' room, and next week, they will do an experiment with Ms. Knox as part of a science rotation.  Here are some photos from our experiment:

Monday, December 4, 2017

Monday Memo 12/4/17

Good morning!

Next Assembly Monday 12/11/17 9AM

The second grade will lead the school in a song at our next assembly on Monday, December 11.  We hope you can join us!

Welcome Kyle!

We are delighted to welcome Kyle Stull to our classroom family.  Kyle and his family just moved to Wayland, and we are thrilled to have him join us.

December Homework

A copy of this month's homework calendar will be sent home today.   Here is the link if you need another copy.


We completed our first STEAM project of the year--building an insulator to keep an ice cube frozen as long as possible.  Your child worked in a team to plan and create a structure from plastic arugala containers, aluminum foil, plastic wrap, and ziplock bags.  We though we could complete testing the insulators, rebuilding, and testing again in just one school day, but your children are such incredible engineers that some of the ice cubes still were not melted by 3:15PM.  Amazing!

Have a great week!  Please contact me with any questions or concerns.


Monday, November 27, 2017

Monday Memo 11/27/17

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving weekend. 


We're back at it this week!  Please ask your child to see her/his list.  A copy of the lists were sent home today.

Compliment Homework

This was sent home today.  Here is the link if you need an extra copy.

Math Stations

Thank you to Todd Ingwersen for helping us on Tuesday.  Please click on this link if you would like to join us one day for math.  Now we are exploring time and fractions.

Mystery Reader

Thank you to Mrs. Lyons for joining us last week!

Bread Making

Thank you to everyone for making our bread baking such a success.  We are especially indebted to our five wonderful adult bakers Mr. Zocco, Mrs. Chaudry, Ms. Richter, Mrs. Trapasso, and Mrs. Williams.  I literally could not have done it without you.

Have a super week!


Monday, November 20, 2017

Monday Memo 11/20/17

Good morning!

Happy Thanksgiving week!  I just love the Thanksgiving holiday.  It's all about food, and there's no gift stress.

Thanksgiving Bread

Speaking of food, I am so thrilled by all of your contributions of time and items for our annual Thanksgiving Bread tradition.  We will have a great time baking on Wednesday.  The class is really looking forward to this special activity.

Winter Gear

It's starting to get cold, and everyone is beginning to bring winter gear, which is great.  However, our lockers are small,  and each student shares their locker with a classmate, so things get tight, and it starts to look like my bedroom closet out in the hallway, what with stray mittens and hats
spilling out of lockers.  Here is a suggestion from my wise fifth grade colleagues:

From the School Nurse:


Your child did a great job on their spelling test on Friday!  We keep the tests in a spelling book here at school.  No spelling this week, but we will continue with this practice the following week.

I am very grateful for this wonderful class and fabulous school community.  Thank you for all you do.  Your children are delightful to teach.  Have a wonderful holiday.


Monday, November 13, 2017

Monday Memo 11/13/17

Good morning!

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend.
Veteran's Day

We are proud to know Ms. Perodeau in the Happy Hollow School office.  She is the Special Education secretary, and her son Todd is currently serving in Afhganistan.  This week, students learned about Lieutenant Commander Perodeau and wrote him cards thanking him for his service.  We will send them off soon, and we hope that LTC Perodeau is surprised and delighted to receive notes from his mom's school.

Veterans Day is special for me because my brother 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. We are so lucky that he returned safely to us.


Your child should have come home today with a spelling list consisting of twenty-ish words.  Their only homework tonight was to do the task they did in school:  cut out the words, and sort them into the appropriate columns.  If the word list was lost, your child can let me know tomorrow.  We have extras.

Have a great week!


Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Monday Memo 11/7/17 (Tuesday Edition)


The marathon was absolutely amazing. Thank you so much to everyone for all the love and support. All of you never stopped inquiring how I was feeling and how the training was going, even though I knew that--on the inside--your eyes must have been glazing over and you were praying for the conversation to end.  You were fantastic at keeping all of that in their thought bubble, as we say at Happy Hollow.  My HH family gave me a spectacular send-off on Friday, especially these twenty adorable seven and eight year olds with whom I spend my days.  They are the best!
Best Second Graders Ever!  My NYC Marathon class!

I'm still on cloud 9, so I hope I'm not rambling and incoherent in the post, but here I go:

Thanksgiving Bread Baking

Our fantastic Room Parents Jennifer Rogers and Melissa Hartford are contacting you about this fun volunteer opportunity on the morning before Thanksgiving.  Thank you in advance for your generous donations of time and supplies.  Here is the link.


We are studying place value.  Next week, the students will take an assessment.  I call it "Show What You Know", and our class is supported during any assessments by a special educator and assistant teachers, who sit at tables with small groups of students and scribe for certain students or reread directions or provide math manipulatives.  We spend no more than forty-five minutes working on an assessment.  If students are not finished, they are provided with an additional forty-five minute block the following day.  No student misses specials or recess time for an assessment.

Math Stations

Thank you, Priya Sawe, for helping us today with place value games.  Here's the link if you would like to sign up.  Tuesday the 14th is currently available!


Our small spelling groups begin next week.  On Monday, your child will receive a list and a Spelling Menu of weekly practice.   Be sure to contact me with any questions about this.

Veggie Skeletons

Thank you so much for your contributions!  We had so much fun, and students worked very cooperatively.

Mystery Reader

Thank you to Ella Goren, who read Something from Nothing, one of my favorite books, as Mystery Reader on Friday.  Then she taught us a mantra, which I tried (and failed) to memorize for the marathon.  However, I remembered that Ella said to just clear your mind and focus on the mantra, and I did that; it was just that my mantra was basic and boring:  "Just keep going" or "Come on".   Thanks, Ella!

Here's the link again if you would like to sign up.  If the time or day doesn't work for you, let me know, and we can try to work it another time.

Beth Crozier, our technology specialist, sent home a yellow notice about  Many of you signed and returned the form.  Thank you!  If you haven't, here's a reminder.
Have a great rest of your week!


Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Monday Memo (Tuesday Edition) 10/31/17

Good morning!

Well, as we say at Happy Hollow, that was unexpected!  As a working parent, I can only imagine the havoc this is wreaking in your house right now, having your children home from school for the second day in a row.  I'm sorry for the stress.

Veggie Skeletons
Thank you so much to everyone who signed up to contribute cut up vegetables for our Halloween project.  It's not candy, but it's still fun.  Please send it in on Wednesday.  We'll still do it.

November Homework Calendar
A hard copy of the November Homework Calendar will be sent home on tomorrow.

Noticing Notebooks
In an effort to live like writers, the second graders now have Noticing Notebooks, a place where they can jot down their thoughts at any time or interesting observations they'd like to record.  Here are some writers and their Noticing Notebooks in action:

It was a rainy week, so we placed the rain gauge in the Happy Hollow Garden.  We checked it every morning.  Last week, we got almost two inches of rain!

Mystery Reader
Thank you, Todd Ingwersen!

Start Spreading the News....
The New York Marathon is THIS Sunday, November 5, and I am running it!  I am very excited and incredibly nervous.  If you care to track me, you can download the NYC Marathon app on your phone.  My bib number is 69576.  However, please be aware that if you are tracking me, settle in and get comfortable; it's going to be a long day--5 hours and change if all goes well.

As I will be driving back from New York, I will not be in school on Monday, November 6.  An excellent substitute is scheduled, and I'm sure it will be a great day.

Have a wonderful week.  Please contact me with any questions or concerns.


Monday, October 23, 2017

Monday Memo 10/23/17

Good morning!

Check out these field trip pics!
Beautiful day for a hike

Add caption

Listening to our guide

Rocks formed from glaciers

Climbing the rocks is so much fun

View from the roof of the observatory

Thank you so much to all of our parent chaperones on Friday.  We had a wonderful day at the Blue Hill, thanks to their hard work.  My phone ran out of battery early in the day, so I need photos.  If you have any pictures you would like to share, please email them to me:

Movie Night

Hope you can come to this fun event!
Walk to School

Thank you so much for helping your child participate in this fun event.  It was a beautiful day to walk to school.  When I was turning in the pledges to the office, I was extremely touched by the generosity, and I'm so glad Mr. Hernandez's community in Puerto Rico will benefit from this.  Thank you.

Math Stations 

Thank you so much to Priya Sawe for joining us for Math Stations last week.  Please check the sign up if you would like to come in one Tuesday morning.

Our Maddie Hartford presenting her service learning project at assembly
Playground Painting

Maddie paints the playground!
Thank you so much to everyone who contributed to painting our playground.  We are proud of Maddie, who was a big helper!

Many people have returned the secret cornucopia project to me.  Thank you.  Here is the link if you need another copy.

Veggie Skeletons
Veggie Skeleton circa 2016

Please sign up to send in some cut up vegetables for our Veggie Skeleton project.  Here is the link.

Have a great week.  Please contact me with any questions or concerns.


Sunday, October 15, 2017

Monday Memo 10/16/17

I hope you had a great weekend.  Read on for some exciting second grade happenings.


I am looking forward to beginning conferences.  Click here for the schedule.  Some parents have had trouble with getting in the building.  Feel free to walk around the school to our classroom.  Our door is off the black top on the playground.  If you can't get in through the main door, I'm happy to let you in through our outside classroom door. 


Group Share is a fun part of Writer's Workshop for us.  Listen to these authors explaining their leads for their Small Moment stories (personal narratives). 

Field Trip Friday

Cross your fingers for good weather on Friday!  I will send home a reminder on Thursday to the students and to the chaperones, too.

Mystery Reader

Veggie Skeletons
Veggie Skeleton circa 2016

We will do this fun activity for a Halloween/Harvest Celebration on Tuesday, October 31.  We need some cut up vegetables.  Please follow this link to contribute.


Have you heard about the Osmo?  Ask your child about this fun iPad app we often during math stations.  We have completed our first unit on Number Combinations, and now we are beginning to study place value.

Thank you to everyone who signed up for Math Stations.  Here is the link if you want to find a time to join us.  Just email me the slot you would like.  Thank you.


Thank you to those of you who have returned the cornucopia.  Please bring it in when you meet with me for your conference (if you haven't already), or send it into school in an envelope.  Thank you.

Have a great week!


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Monday Memo (Tuesday Edition) 10/10/17

Dear Families,

I hope you had a wonderful long weekend.  We had a very exciting week in second grade. 


We constructed pinwheels to show wind.  Then we took the pinwheels outside to test them!
Testing pinwheels

Then we tried out the anemometer. 
Do you know what an anemometer is for?  Ask your child!

Fire Safety

We were delighted to have Todd Winner teach the second grade about fire safety.  In addition to being a fire fighter, Todd Winner is a distinguished Happy Hollow alum.  We are very proud!
Firefighter Todd Winner teaches safety

New Happy Hollow Building Substitute (and former student of Ms. Morrison) Ms. Spinney

Weather Workshop

We are grateful to the PTO for providing the funding for the Acton Discovery Museum to bring us their Traveling Weather Workshop.  We enjoyed this interactive lesson and the hands-on learning.  Today, your child is bringing home a weather kit from the Discovery Museum.  Feel free to explore this with your child, but it is not a requirement.
Evaporation with Acton Discovery Museum Science Workshop

Using thermometers

Making cloud prints


We were thrilled to virtually meet our California penpals via skype!  Chatting with my aunt (and godmother) Ms. Hopkins and her second grade class was lots of fun, and we are so excited to start exchanging letters.

Mystery Reader Mandy Donovan-Drake
Mystery Reader

We hope you can come be a Mystery Reader soon.  Thank you to Mandy Donovan-Drake for being this week's reader.  Click the link to see what other dates are available.  You can email me with the slot you would like, and I will book you!

Math Stations

Thank you so much to those of you who signed up for Math Stations.  Here is the link if you want to look at available slots. 


Thank you for working with your child on the October Homework requirements.  Your child can turn in finished work on a daily basis or turn it in on Fridays if that works better for you.

Have a great week.  Please contact me with any questions or concerns.