This first week at school involves a lot of introductions and explorations of everything from school and classroom procedures, to reading and writing genres, and the inquiry process in math and science. I’m confident we’ll settle in fairly quickly and all feel more comfortable once we establish a clear routine.
A couple of notes on this week’s homework:
* Writing — Students will have a weekly writing prompt most weeks. I purposely didn’t provide much guidance this week as it will help me assess where the students are in writing. Please allow them to complete this independently. If you review it with them, don’t correct errors. Instead, just point them in the general direction, such as: “I noticed you misspelled a word on the third line” or “Do you remember how we begin sentences”.
* Reading — Fourth-graders should be reading 20 minutes a night at least five days a week. At least half this reading should be with an adult.
* Math — Students will be quizzed on their times tables through 12s this week. We’ll also be experimenting with pacing and independent work, including homework. It may take a bit before we hit on the right balance. If your child announces they’ve finished their work at school, commend him or her for being so focused and on task at school (and then try cajoling them into practicing their math facts for a few minutes). If they seem overloaded with math homework, please share your concerns with me.
* SEL — SEL stands for Social Emotional Learning, an exciting curriculum being used throughout the district. It’s being taught in all Mills classes on Mondays, and fourth grade includes a weekly, student-lead home activity. Your child should bring this home on Mondays, and it’s due back Friday with a parent signature.
We’ll cover more of this at Parent Night on Thursday. I look forward to seeing you then, but feel free to contact me throughout the week.