• LAST WEEK of School is Here ! ! !

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 6/8/2018

    LAST WEEK OF SCHOOL IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS:

     

    • Monday, June 11th will be the annual Move Up day. Students in 5th grade will be heading over the the middle school to meet their new team’s teachers!  Students will not be told their new team or homeroom teacher until after recess. Move up day will be from 1:25 - 2:10 PM.  Staff from FMS will be walking 5th grade students over the the middle school and will also be walked back to FMS. Please ask your student about their experience for this special and exciting day when they get home!
    • Tuesday, June 12th students will be practicing for the 5th grade Moving On Ceremony over at the Middle School Gym from 2:15 - 3:00 PM.  This is a very important practice that ALL students should be in attendance for. Please schedule any appointments or pick ups around this time.  
    • Wednesday, June 13th will be the 5th grade Moving On Ceremony.  This is a wonderful ceremony to be shared by students and family members.  The Moving On Ceremony will be held from 8:45 - 10:30 in the Essex Middle School gymnasium.  I would advise parents to be in the gym by 8:30 to get a good spot. During this ceremony each student will be called up by their teacher(s) and receive a certificate of completion.  Please let me know if you have any follow up questions about this special day.
    • Thursday, June 14th is our LAST DAY OF SCHOOL & end of year Sandhill Park 5th grade Pool party. Students came home from school on Wednesday June 6th with their permission slip that was due back into school Friday the 8th.  Please mail me directly should you need another copy as soon as possible. Parents are more than welcome to chaperone. You can walk over with the class or meet us over there. You MUST be an approved chaperone, please mail me with any questions.
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  • We are in the HOMESTRETCH ! ! !

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 6/1/2018

    ANNOUNCEMENTS:

    • Wednesday, June 13th will be the 5th grade Moving On Ceremony.  This is a wonderful ceremony to be shared by students and family members.  The Moving On Ceremony will be held from 8:45 - 10:30 in the Essex Middle School gymnasium.  During this ceremony each student will be called up by their teacher(s) and receive a certificate of completion.  Please let me know if you have any follow up questions about this special day.
    • Sandhill Park end of year 5th grade Pool party will be on Thursday June 14th, which is the last day of school.  Students will be bringing home their permission slip to be signed on Wednesday June 6th. Please take the time to read over the information form with your student, sign and return with your student by no later than Friday June 8th please.  Let me know if you have any additional questions.

     

    REMINDERS:

    • Essex Middle School Parents night for new 6th grade students will be held on June 5th from 5:30-6:30PM in the EMS cafeteria.  Please plan on attending for further information on this big transition for your student.
    • Please consider volunteering for our annual FMS Field Day on Wednesday 6/6.  All information came home already for you to sign up or email Tyson Valyou directly at tvalyou@ewsd.org.
    • ALSO, there is a food drive that will be finishing up on our field day Wednesday 6/6.  All non-perishable food items to be sent in with your student to the classroom. All items will be weighed and totaled for donation to Aunt Dot’s Place.

     

    ACADEMICS:

    • Reading groups will come to a close on Tuesday June 12th.
    • Math Instruction with come to a close on Tuesday June 12th.
    • Science Puberty will end on Tuesday June 12th.
    • STEM projects will be completed by Tuesday June 12th.
    • All student written nonfiction research books will be published by Tuesday June 12th.
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  • REMINDERS ! ! !

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 5/25/2018

    ANNOUNCEMENTS:

    • Wednesday, June 13th will be the 5th grade Moving On Ceremony.  This is a wonderful ceremony to be shared by students and family members.  The Moving On Ceremony will be held from 8:45 - 10:30 in the Essex Middle School gymnasium.  During this ceremony each student will be called up by their teacher(s) and receive a certificate of completion.  Please let me know if you have any follow up questions about this special day.

     

    REMINDERS:

    • Essex Middle School Parents night for new 6th grade students will be held on June 5th from 5:30-6:30PM in the EMS cafeteria.  Please plan on attending for further information on this big transition for your student.
    • Please consider volunteering for our annual FMS Field Day on Wednesday 6/6.  All information came home already for you to sign up or email Tyson Valyou directly at tvalyou@ewsd.org.
    • ALSO, there is a food drive that will be finishing up on our field day Wednesday 6/6.  All non-perishable food items to be sent in with your student to the classroom. All items will be weighed and totaled for donation to Aunt Dot’s Place.
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  • What an AMAZING Week for Field Trips

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 5/18/2018

    ANNOUNCEMENTS:

    • Wednesday, June 13th will be the 5th grade Moving On Ceremony.  This is a wonderful ceremony to be shared by students and family members.  The Moving On Ceremony will be held from 8:45 - 10:30 in the Essex Middle School gymnasium.  During this ceremony each student will be called up by their teacher(s) and receive a certificate of completion.  Please let me know if you have any follow up questions about this special day.

    REMINDERS:

    • Essex Middle School Parents night for new 6th grade students will be held on June 5th from 5:30-6:30PM in the EMS cafeteria.  Please plan on attending for further information on this big transition for your student.

     

    What an amazing set of field trips we all had together this past week on Wednesday and Friday. Thank you very much to all parent chaperones who took on such an important responsibility for the group of students! Take a look at some pictures from the trips below.

    gh g d 1 d s s s h

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  • Spring Weather Finally Here!

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 5/11/2018

     

    REMINDERS:

    • Students will be taking their state Science test on Monday 5/14 and Tuesday 5/15.  This is the district’s first year requiring 5th grade to take this test and will not be reported out on their end of year report cards. Please make sure that your child is well rested and has a good breakfast in the morning prior to coming into school.
    • FIELD TRIP reminders.  Wednesday 5/16 we are heading to the Ethan Allen Homestead for the annual Conservation Field Days.  Parents please check the weather leading up to this field trip as it will go on, rain or shine. Please make sure that your student is wearing older sneakers or boots as some of the learning activities will potentially be in areas of the property where mud and sloshy ground is present.  I would also recommend bringing a rain jacket to be safe!
    • FIELD TRIP reminders.  Friday 5/18 we are heading up to Montreal for a full day learning experience, VERY EXCITING ! ! !  You need to have your student at Founders Memorial School by 6AM. The bus will not wait for late arrivals as we need to keep our timed schedule in tact for the day.  Please contact Mr. Acanfora directly (eacanfora@ewsd.org) should you have a concern about getting your student to FMS on time @ 6 AM. Likewise, you will need to be at FMS on time to pick up your student after we arrive back home.  Parents were provided paperwork to fill out letting us know what number should be placed on the “All Call” list in order to get a phone call to announce when the bus has crossed back over the border into Vermont. Chaperones please ask your student to also give you the “Chaperone Information, Itinerary, & Student Groups” packet I also handed out on Friday May 11th.
    • Students have reviewed the “Guidelines for Student Behavior” document for our Montreal field trip that was placed in your student’s mailbox on Friday May 11th.  Please take the time to review this together in the home over this weekend. Please sign page #5 with your student acknowledging our expectations for this field trip and send back into the classroom on Monday May 14th.
    • Students will begin their 5th Grade Puberty Mini Unit Study Monday May 14th.  The informational announcement letter was placed in your student’s mailbox on Friday May 11th.



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  • 1st Week of May

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 5/3/2018

    REMINDERS:

      • All students will need to bring in TWO 2L soda bottles for one science project experiment and one STEM specific project students will be moving into next week.  If your family does not purchase soda/seltzer for the home you can easily go to Essex Discount Beverage and ask to have a couple or purchase them for 5-6 cents each.  If you have extras in the home please send them in.
      • Students will begin their 5th Grade Puberty Mini Unit Study during the second half of May.  Stay tuned for parent letter to come home as well as future blog posts under “Science:” Please feel free to mail me with any questions prior to receiving your parent informational letter.
      • Students are no longer required to turn in a reading log with written summaries through the remainder of the school year.  Hopefully students have developed an age appropriate love, speaking about, and meaningful reflection of reading in the home and will continue to do so in their home.  Please let me know if you have any questions about this moving forward.
      • MONTREAL field trip information sent home on Wednesday 4/11.  This is VERY IMPORTANT information that was sent home, please ask your student to give this to you asap or take a look in their backpack.  This informational packet has 4 forms are needed to be filled out and returned by Monday 4/16. This informational packet is NOT the original permission slip form, yet a set of health, motion sickness, and pick up person contact information for arrival back at FMS that evening. Please contact me should you have any questions about these forms.

     

    Reading:

    • Student book groups (literature circles) will continue through the remainder of the school year.
    • All of the groups will be completing at least one more rotation with a fantasy genre assigned book.
    • Some of the groups will be able to go into a more indepth historical fiction study as well as close out the year with a fantasy genre piece of literature.
    • Stay in communication with your student so you know what piece of literature they are currently reading and feel free to have a discussion with them about it.

     

    Math:

    • We will be finishing up our fractions unit study with a strong focus on multiplying and dividing a fraction by a fraction as well as a couple different strategies on how to efficiently solve each computational function.
    • Students will be moving into a more indepth study of decimals via conceptual understanding, relation to fractional representations, adding/subtracting/multiplying/dividing, and reviewing the concept of volume via the computational aspect.
    • Students will then be moving into a very quick study of identifying 2 dimensional geometric shapes and properties to prove their accuracy and rounding out the school year with some algebra based thinking by analyzing computational equations via patterns and relationships.

     

    Social Studies / Writing Integration:

    • Students are now specifically focusing on the organization, writing, and editing of their of their nonfiction books based on their 5 themes of geography and research from their choice of Canadian Province, South or Central American Country.   
    • Just as real life editors, I will be conferencing with each student multiple times throughout the coming week so that we have accuracy in their writing, appropriate supporting visuals to the information they are presenting to their readers, and begin brainstorming various ways to “build” their final published books.  Some of this work will also be done via “round table” discussions so that peer groups can add their meaningful opinion and suggestions for each other’s work.
    • Ask your student to sign into their gmail accounts to show you their progress!

     

    Technology & Design Challenge:

    • As mentioned in previous blog posts, students can tackle any of the design challenges I post in their “Technology Integration” Google classroom when they feel up to it.  We are currently up to 4 different challenges posted. Please encourage your student to attempt these as the design(s) they have approved for printing will be theirs to keep.  Please contact me directly should you have any questions.
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  • Welcome Back & Into the Homestretch ! ! !

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 4/30/2018

    WELCOME BACK EVERYONE ! ! !

     I truly hope you all had a wonderful spring vacation with family and friends.  We are cruising to the end of the school year with much learning and exploration to complete.  Please continue to read the classroom blog for important reminders and dates for the remainder of the year.  As always, should you have any questions please email me directly eacanfora@ewsd.org.

     

    REMINDERS:

      • NEW field trip permission form sent via email today (4/30) for Thursday’s second Flynn Theater field trip of the year.  Please see Email correspondence for permission form, cost ($10), and chaperone interest.
      • NEW field trip permission form sent home a couple weeks before break for the Ethan Allen Homestead conservation field day is now due. Please send this back in with your student ASAP.  There are several students who have yet to bring this back. I will provide individual reminder mails this weekend should it not be returned by today. This is an amazing learning opportunity for all students. It is designed for 5th graders from across the state to come and learn about conservation efforts in our state. We are asking that families please send in a $5 donation to help cover our transportation costs (bus & driver), this is essential so thank you very much in advance.
      • MONTREAL field trip information sent home on Wednesday 4/11.  This is VERY IMPORTANT information that was sent home, please ask your student to give this to you asap or take a look in their backpack.  This informational packet has 4 forms are needed to be filled out and returned by Monday 4/16. Please contact me should you have any questions about these forms.

     

    Math:

    • We will be moving on to close out our fractions unit study this week with a quick review of addition & subtraction of fractions with like/unlike denominators as well as mixed & improper fractions.  Students will also be introduced to the concept of multiplying a fraction by a fraction as well as a couple different strategies on how to efficiently solve.

     

    Social Studies / Writing Integration:

    • Students will continue to be immersed in the careful planning, organization, and writing of their nonfiction books based on their 5 themes of geography and research from their choice of Canadian Province, South or Central American Country.  Many students are completed with a good portion of the pages for their book, however will continually go through the digital editing process next week with Mr. Acanfora. Just as all editors do, I will be conferencing with each student multiple times throughout the coming weeks so that we have accuracy in their writing, appropriate supporting visuals to the information they are presenting to their readers, and begin brainstorming various ways to “build” their final published books.
    • Ask your student to sign into their gmail accounts to show you their progress! 

     

    Technology & Design Challenge: 

    • As mentioned in previous blog posts, students can tackle any of the design challenges I post in their “Technology Integration” Google classroom when they feel up to it.  We are currently up to 3 different challenges posted. Please encourage your student to attempt these as the design(s) they have approved for printing will be theirs to keep.  Please contact me directly should you have any questions.
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  • Seasons Change?

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 4/13/2018

    REMINDERS:

    • NEW field trip permission form sent home a couple weeks back for the Ethan Allen Homestead conservation field day is due. Please send this back in with your student ASAP.  There are several students who have yet to bring this back. I will provide individual reminder mails this weekend should it not be returned by today. This is an amazing learning opportunity for all students. It is designed for 5th graders from across the state to come and learn about conservation efforts in our state. We are asking that families please send in a $5 donation to help cover our transportation costs (bus & driver), this is essential so thank you very much in advance.

     

    • MONTREAL field trip information sent home on Wednesday 4/11.  This is VERY IMPORTANT information that was sent home, please ask your student to give this to you asap or take a look in their backpack.  This informational packet has 4 forms are needed to be filled out and returned by Monday 4/16. Please contact me should you have any questions about these forms.

     

    • SBAC testing began this week Tuesday.  Students have now completed their first week of SBAC testing, Math only. If any student was absent and was not able to fit into the schedule for make-up sessions, we will tackle it at the end of our second week testing window.  Students will be taking the Literacy portion this coming Tuesday (4/17), Wednesday (4/18), Thursday (4/19). Please make sure your student has had a good amount of sleep and proper breakfast in the morning. Students will be allowed to have snacks before and after the assessment.  In my classroom, students are also able to chew gum. Once the testing session is over for the day students will need to throw out their gum in the trash bin as there is no gum chewing in the building. If you have any questions please email me directly eacanfora@ewsd.org.

     

    Math:

    • Students hiking trail project is now complete. All students who have been on task during the class time set aside for working on these projects with their partners will have theirs posted on the wall in the hallway outside of the classroom should you like to take the time to come on in and have your student show you their work.
    • We will be moving on to close out our fractions unit study next week with a quick review of addition & subtraction of fractions with like/unlike denominators as well as mixed & improper fractions.  Students will also be introduced to the concept of multiplying a fraction by a fraction as well as a couple different strategies on how to efficiently solve.

     

    Social Studies / Writing Integration:

    • Students are currently immersed in the careful planning, organization, and writing of their nonfiction books based on their 5 themes of geography and research from their choice of Canadian Province, South or Central American Country.  Many students are completed with a good portion of the pages for their book, however will continually go through the digital editing process next week with Mr. Acanfora. Just as all editors do, I will be conferencing with each student multiple times throughout the coming weeks so that we have accuracy in their writing, appropriate supporting visuals to the information they are presenting to their readers, and begin brainstorming various ways to “build” their final published books.
    • Ask your student to sign into their gmail accounts to show you their progress!

     

    Technology & Design Challenge:

    • AJ Flannigan is our first student in the classroom who followed through with the first 3D Tinkercad challenge project.  AJ attempted the Life Hack challenge and completed it with much success. He coupled his life hack design with a birthday present idea for his father.  Take a look at the photo below of AJ and his design. You can see that the cone shaped structure was designed to hold his father’s wedding ring and not slip off the structure.  The back part with the slot was designed to hold either pictures of his family or a place to rest his phone at the end of the day. The sunken trays were designed for his father to set his badge in or loose change from his pockets at the end of the day. Finally the birthday message to his father on the design was simply “icing on the cake.”  Way to go AJ!

    a

    • As mentioned in previous blog posts, students can tackle any of the design challenges I post in their “Technology Integration” Google classroom when they feel up to it.  We are currently up to 3 different challenges posted. Please encourage your student to attempt these as the design(s) they have approved for printing will be theirs to keep.  Please contact me directly should you have any questions.
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  • April Begins

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 4/6/2018

    REMINDERS:

    • NEW field trip permission form sent home for Ethan Allen Homestead conservation field day is due. Please send this back in with your student ASAP.  This is an amazing learning opportunity for all students. It is designed for 5th graders from across the state to come and learn about conservation efforts in our state. We are asking that families please send in a $5 donation to help cover our transportation costs (bus & driver).
    • SBAC testing begins the week of 4/9.  Students will be first taking the Math portion on Tuesday (4/10), Wednesday (4/11), Thursday (4/12).  Students will then be taking the Literacy portion on Tuesday (4/17), Wednesday (4/18), Thursday (4/19).  Please make sure your student has had a good amount of sleep and proper breakfast in the morning. Students will be allowed to have snacks before and after the assessment.  In my classroom, students are also able to chew gum. Once the testing session is over for the day students will need to throw out their gum in the trash bin as there is no gum chewing in the building.  If you have any questions please email me directly eacanfora@ewsd.org.

     

    Special Guests:

    • On Friday we hosted some very special guests in the classroom for amazing learning opportunity. Two second year graduate students in the Neuroscience Graduate Program at UVM came into the classroom to celebrate and teach our students about the brain, spinal cord, nervous system and brain safety.  Students were introduced to some of the basics around neuroscience &  anatomy through powerpoint presentation and interactive activities.  They reached out to several classrooms in our school as a follow up to National Brain Awareness Week (March 12-16). Take a look at some of the images from this learning session and ask your student all about it!

    d d d d

     

    Math:

    • Students are now actively working on their final draft of their fractions hiking trail project.  A few groups are already completed with their final maps and have them already posted in the hallway.  Remember to ask your student about their progress or check in with me directly should you want an update.  The goal will to have all map projects up in the hallway by Friday 4/13. This project has incorporated numerous fraction skills that have been taught and practiced thus far into this unit study, as well as combining many of our 5 themes of geography knowledge while creating a physical map representation of the partner based design of their hiking trail.

    d d d

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  • Announcements & Images

    Posted by Erik Acanfora on 3/30/2018

    REMINDERS:

    • FMS Fun Night scheduled for Friday March 30th has unfortunately been cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances.  Any payments already made will be returned to student’s homeroom teacher directly. If you have any questions please mail me directly.
    • NEW field trip permission form sent home for Ethan Allen Homestead conservation field day.  This is an amazing learning opportunity for all students. It is designed for 5th graders from across the state to come and learn about conservation efforts in our state. We are asking that families please send in a $5 donation to help cover our transportation costs (bus & driver).

     

    Math:

    • Students are just about ready to show their overall cartography skills on their final draft of their fractions hiking trail project.  This project has incorporated numerous fraction skills that have been taught and practiced thus far into this unit study, as well as combining many of our 5 themes of geography knowledge while creating a physical map representation of the partner based design of their hiking trail. As student partners complete the project we will be posting them in the hallway for display.  Please ask your student when theirs is up on the wall so you can come on in to see their work.

    a a

     

    Social Studies / Writing Integration:

    • Students have started to plan, organize, and write their nonfiction books based on their 5 themes of geography and research from their choice of Canadian Province, South or Central American Country.  Ask your student to sign into their gmail accounts to show you their progress!  Below are a few screen shot images of individual pages currently being worked on in sutdent created nonfiction books.

     

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