2019-20 Grade 3/4 – So much depends upon…

Dear Parents,

Thank you all who were able to come to Back to School Night. I hope you got a little taste of the variety of materials we use, my curricular hopes and dreams as well those of the students.  We gave this some thought and they divided their Hopes and Dreams for the year ahead into academic goals and personal goals.  I told them I am confident they will all be able to achieve their goals, at least to some degree and I am.  Some included, “…learn how to read a map and how to draw a dog”, …”to  keep going even through tough times” “…to participate more with my good ideas in subjects in school”, ” to get better at soccer and to read more books” and one we all struggle with, “…to not get rude when I am angry.”

The slideshow attached will give you some idea of the different activities from this past week. Working in the garden with the Pre-Schoolers, presenting our dioramas to our classmates as well as the 1/2 graders, reading through a new Poetry packet and choosing a poem to work with next week, practicing using longitude and latitude to find different locations on a map and finally – Kayaking!! They had a perfect day for it and had a blast!

Portfolios went home today along with a sheet with some questions for them to choose from to answer about their work. Perhaps you could take some time and review the work with them and help them decide which one (s) to write a short reflection about. I know this is a challenging assignment, we will work on it as the year progresses but I think it is so important for them to start taking some ownership, pride, and responsibility for all the work they produce here at school. Self-reflection is an important first step in becoming independent and life-long learners.

We will start peer reading with the B-2 preschoolers next week but otherwise will follow our normal schedule. We will join the Lower School for Mountain Day ( our annual hike in Kennedy Park) the following week on Thursday, October 3rd and I will send more info about that as we get closer.

Enjoy this beautiful weekend, sounds like a lot of you will visit the Apple Squeeze or just get to spend some time outside for these wonderful days of summer becoming fall.

https://photos.app.goo.gl/rSjPgXBpoJkgMvMZ9

 

 

Best, Katharine

By |2019-09-20T16:30:27-04:00September 20th, 2019|

3/4 Grade off to a great start!

Dear Families,

We’ve had a busy and wonderful start to the year!

We’ve finished our Hopes and Dreams, both personal and academic, for the year ahead, created some class rules to help us achieve those dreams, reviewed the ideas behind Growth Mindset, started our Poetry Folders, filled in our continents/oceans maps, visited all our special classes at least once, and…managed to have some fun while doing it.

Our routines are becoming more familiar each day and I look to you for some help and support with that. Please remind your child to check their planner each night to help remember what may be due for the next day. I told them on the first day that the planner will be (one of ) their best friend this year. I will sign it at the end of each day after a short conference making sure everyone understands whatever assignments are entered.

As I plan ahead for our many projects, I want you to know that while I do believe in the importance of student voice and choice and the power that that autonomy can give to some, others will need more structure and I am prepared to step in when I sense the need.  One of the strengths of a multi-age classroom is that students can learn at their own rate. One of my many goals for the year is to create a learning family that is dynamic, flexible, challenging and accommodates all levels of learning.

If possible, before you drop off please tell your child how they are getting home that day; i.e., parent pick-up, afterschool program (p.m.), etc. If plans change during the day, just email me and copy Melissa Kruse in the office (mkruze@berkshirecountryday.org) or vice versa, so we can get them safely to the right place.

I look forward to seeing as many of you as possible on Back-To-School night on September 18th and will be checking in by phone before then. Needless to say, if you have any concerns or questions, please email me directly.

Thank you for sending in inside shoes and a change of clothes, for some I know that is still on the list. I was so happy to hear that everyone was able to join the soccer team, it’s such a great opportunity at the end of these beautiful fall days ahead. It also helps strengthen the sense of family and belonging here at BCD. They all seemed pretty excited about it this morning.

I hope the photos (just click the September in 3/4 Grade link below)  below give you some sense of the work we’ve been doing already. They include some shots of our visit to the Distance Lab to work on the Four 4’s problem, filling in our continents maps, drafting our Hopes and Dreams, organizing our cubbies and a little Choice Time.

Have a great weekend,

Katharine

September in 3/4 Grade

By |2019-09-06T12:10:13-04:00September 6th, 2019|

Last chance for summer reading materials in French through Bayard-Milan!

Bonjour tout le monde,

Tomorrow, May 15th, I will have a table of sample materials from the French language publishing house, Bayard-Milan, on display for your consideration in the Learning Commons.

My hope is that parents and families of students of all ages at BCD will stop by during or after school to peruse the selections, and consider subscribing to a magazine for your child for some enriching summer reading in French!

From Pre-school through Gr.9, there is something for everyone!

The samples on display will be organized by level and age, and include a plethora of themes, styles, and layouts. Please check out the link below for more information on the different magazines offered, per age.

http://monde.bayard-milan.com/parents/quel-magazine-pour-quel-age/

What is Bayard-Milan?  … “We are journalists, graphic designers, early childhood education professionals, employees or freelancers … for forty years we have chosen to put our readers at the center of our editorial thinking. Listening to them, understanding them, astonishing them, nourishing them with inspirational works and accompanying them at each stage of their lives.”

Here’s a short excerpt on the mission of Bayard-Milan:

“More than anything, today as for yesterday, we have a duty of promoting enchantment in the younger generation. And in this particular situation where our magazines are not the voice of parents or teachers, but of caring accomplices, we can highlight the positive force that exists in everyone and in the many situations one encounters in life. And when you have the chance to live through words, thanks to talented creators, characters who can embody all their life experiences, it’s as if we invent small lights that will mark the lives of children and which they are will remember for a long time.” 

Please carve out a few minutes tomorrow to check out the selection of Foreign Language materials in the Learning Commons, for all grade levels and interests!

Best,

Mme. Daire

P.s for all inquiries concerning subscriptions, please refer directly to the US agent for Bayard-Milan ;

Ms. Catherine LAMY

catherine.lamy@bayard-may.org

*Orders are not placed through BCD.

http://monde.bayard-milan.com/#

 

Merci beaucoup!

By |2019-05-14T14:11:59-04:00May 14th, 2019|

Grade 3 Newsletter

Please remind your child to read at least 15 minutes each night.  Encourage your child to wonder about plot or characters and begin to notice descriptive words.  Thank you again for being such good reading role models for your children.

The third graders have received this week, in social studies class, information regarding their next project- The Biography Report.  As they read about this person’s life, I would like them to answer the following questions:

1. Whom are you reading about?
2. Where did this person spend his/her childhood?
3. What did this person do before he/she became famous?
4. What are this person’s greatest accomplishments?
5. When did this person die? (or what is he/she currently doing?)
6. Share an interesting story about your topic.

I would like the children to answer the questions on a separate piece of paper and, pretending to be the famous person, create a presentation of at least a minute.  Students will dress up and use props to make their presentation come alive.

As noted on the handout, all projects are due April 18th.  The presentations will take place on May 3rd at 2:00 p.m. in the third grade homeroom.  Parents are invited to join us on this day for this spectacular event.

Beginning January 28th, all students need to arrive at school no later than 8:10 am.  The children will be taking the ERBs, a standardized test given to third graders at this time of year.  Thank you in advance for your help with this matter.

By |2019-01-22T10:56:57-04:00January 22nd, 2019|

Grade 3 News

This week in math, we will explore subtraction with regrouping.  The children are beginning to work more accurately and confidently to solve problems given in class.  I appreciate your help in studying those pesky math facts.  Flash cards are a great idea to do at home or in the car.  I strongly recommend that practice with these basic tables be done daily.  Your child will be amazed at his/her progress.

The Berkshire Research Projects should be nearly completed at this point.  Dioramas are due November 16th.  This is a good first foray into the area of gathering information and then organizing it to share with classmates.  Thank you for helping your child find a suitable topic, books, and in some instances, for taking your child to visit a Berkshire site.

In language arts we are continuing to work on composition strategies, as well as the grammar-writing connection.  The students will write about what they are thankful for in writing lab this week.  These paragraphs will be sent home next week so that they may be shared at your Thanksgiving celebration.

I enjoyed discussing your wonderful third graders with you at parent conferences.  Please feel free to drop by the homeroom any time you are at school to look at all the fine work your child is completing in class.

 

 

By |2018-11-13T10:06:36-04:00November 13th, 2018|

Grade 3 News

In math this week we will begin our unit on multi-digit addition.  Please review the basic math facts at home.  This will increase your child’s confidence and speed, as we continue to work with larger numbers.  While in reading class, we are working to read for detail and to improve our written answers to comprehension questions.  I am looking for capital letters, end marks, and correct spelling.  The children are working very hard and I am pleased with the results.

Our latest character word in writing lab will be “cooperation.”  The children will discuss the meaning of this important word, and their final thoughts on the topic will be displayed in the third grade classroom.  I can see by their actions in class that the students have a good grasp of what this word means, and I am impressed with how they are applying it to their everyday school life.

The various towns that make up Berkshire County are our current topic in Social Studies.  This week the students were given information regarding their first research project of the year- “The Berkshire Research Project.” Students are asked to select and research a person or place associated with Berkshire County.  An instruction sheet complete with questions and checkpoint dates was provided to each student.  If your child has any questions regarding the project, please ask him/her to bring them in to school, as I will save time at the end of each day to discuss how the projects are progressing.

By |2018-10-18T13:34:13-04:00October 18th, 2018|

Grade 3 News

Welcome to Third Grade! Once a month you will be receiving a newsletter, like this one, to tell you what your child is doing in class and how you and others at home can help.

During the first few weeks of school, the students studied graphing in math. The children learned how to identify and read pictographs, line graphs, and bar graphs. This week  in class we started our next unit, which looks at place value and time.

The social studies program has opened with a unit on Berkshire County. For the next two months the students will be learning about the Berkshires’ history and folklore.  As a culminating project to this study, the students will choose a landmark in the area to research and present the information they have learned about the site to their classmates.

In language arts, the children wrote about which color they thought was faster-yellow or red. These pieces are displayed in the classroom.  Please feel free to stop by any time to look at all the great work the third graders have completed.

The Third Grade Peer Reading Program is off to a great start!  Last Wednesday the children traveled over to the 2- year-old program where they spent some time reading books to these younger students.  This activity will take place every Wednesday until the end of the year.

Important reminder: Please send a note to class with your child, if there is a change in his/her normal after-school pick-up or bus routine.

I am looking forward to working with each of you to provide your child with a happy and successful third grade year!

 

By |2018-09-20T13:32:49-04:00September 20th, 2018|

Always Enhancing French Classes—And a Win!

Bonjour et bienvenue to the 2018-2019 school year!

Over the summer, I spent time preparing materials for the new year. I tapped into new resource providers, like the publisher Bayard-Milan, and I am looking forward to implementing new resources in partnership with what is currently in circulation for native-speaking students in France. I’ve built on my visit last Spring to the International School of Boston (ISB), a bilingual French-American school, have reviewed my notes, and am bringing new ideas into play this year throughout the various grade levels here at BCD. While visiting ISB, I spent the day shadowing French teachers in different grade levels, 1st through 5th, to get a firsthand account of a day in the life of a French immersion school.

Reading in the target foreign language is a pillar in strengthening a student’s aptitude and comprehension. In French class at BCD, I will continue to include French stories and French language educational magazines into daily classwork, which will encourage the students to learn about themselves, the world around them, and about expressing their unique personality … in French!

In keeping with my goal of encouraging reading in French, earlier this summer I applied for a grant through the French Consulat General in Boston. https://boston.consulfrance.org/-English-

The grant was titled “The Magic of Reading in French; ” its goal is to bring free books to children enrolled in French classes in both public and private schools across New England. The objectives of this fund are to:

  1. Trigger children’s curiosity for French language and culture;
  2. Expand kids’ French language skills – all under the guise of having fun with French books;
  3. Improve and strengthen existing French tracks.

And…drum roll please…

On a gagné! We won! 

When I arrived on campus last Friday, I found four big cardboard boxes full of brand new French books for BCD! These 70 books will contribute greatly to our school’s French-language literature resources which will be used in French class across the grade levels. I also encourage students and parents to borrow books as often as they’d like to read at home.

The different resources and the experiences I refer to in this post, combined with the enriching, culturally appropriate, and level-appropriate novels and multimedia tools we currently use in my curriculum, will help enable the continued discovery and encouragement toward the enjoyment of literature in French at BCD.

I hope that you have all had a fun summer! I, along with my colleagues, are so happy to welcome you back to the BCD campus this week, or to campus for the first time if you are a new student and family! Here’s to a great year!

A bientot,
Madame Daire

               

 

By |2018-09-06T11:58:56-04:00September 4th, 2018|

Amazing (Winter Music Concert)

Weren’t they great? I am still recuperating from being blown away by our talented young musicians in grades PreK-9. From “Peace is the World Smiling,” to “White Winter Hymnal,” each student really brought their best self to the stage and to all the rehearsals before as well.

15356745_10155528427944951_1490898836791623258_n

Looking forward to seeing what our performers do at Arts Night 2, Spring Concert, Private Lessons Recitals, Arts Night 3, and LS Spring Musical in the New Year! Until then, time for us all to bundle up by our hearths and enjoy some seasonal festivities…

Thanks to each and every BCD community member, you all helped bring our 2016 Winter Concert to life. Special shout-outs to Mr. Lee and the Facilities team, Mr. Spitzer for mounting Student Art, our ebullient co-M.C. Ms. Doherty, and our creative team of parent and student Elves who helped setup the beautiful concert space last night.

Lucky me to teach these amazing young musicians. Lucky us to enjoy listening to the final product of their efforts! You can access some Audio from our Winter Concert and Arts Night performances available on SoundCloud! Thanks Ms. DelCarpine for recording.

Musically Yours,

Mr. Martin

www.soundcloud.com/bcdmusic

By |2016-12-09T17:38:31-04:00December 9th, 2016|

A Message from the Art Studio…

“The arts are an essential element of education, just like reading, writing, and arithmetic…music, dance, painting, and theater are all keys that unlock profound human understanding and accomplishment.”
– William Bennett, Former US Secretary of Education

dsc_0558

As our Lower and Middle School students shift studios for the trimester and our Upper School students settle into new Arts Block electives, we all look forward to the creative challenges, opportunities, and discoveries that lie ahead!

**SPECIAL REQUEST**
Mr. Katz is seeking old skis for a project with students in the Wood Shop. If you have questions or are able to contribute, please contact Mr. Katz directly: jkatz@berkshirecountryday.org.

getfileattachment dsc_0847

 

 

 

dsc_5833

By |2016-12-09T04:50:48-04:00December 9th, 2016|