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February 19th, 2019 – Winter Bliss?

Good Morning Families!

I am thankful to start a new week that does not involve the massive Reading and Math tests your children took last week!  However, as much as I hoped for a little normalcy, it sure looks like we’ll be interrupted by snow again, tomorrow.  That being the case, I’m going to put a qualifier on this week’s spelling words.  If we don’t have a snow day…we’ll have a spelling list.  If we do have a snow day…we’ll cancel the list.  So, expect a list to come home tonight just to be safe, and then we’ll play it by ear with the weather.

We will have a literacy homework this week, however.  Our reading theme is week will focus on fairy tales, and what we can learn from them.  We’ll practice summarizing, point of view and root words in our practice.

In Math, we’ll change our focus to solving perimeter and area for the next few lessons.  We’ll learn ways to find perimeter and area in a variety of shapes, using different strategies.  The first three lessons will cover two days, so in my Math class I anticipate homework on the following nights.

Tuesday – No Homework

Wednesday – Homework 5-1

Thursday – No Homework

Friday – Homework 5-2

In writing, we’ll begin preparations for writing a Personal Essay about “A Person I Admire.”  And, in Science our eggs arrived last week for Embryology.  If all goes well, we’ll have 12 new little fuzzy classmates hatching around March 5th.

Thanks for reading and stay warm this week!

Eric Wachter

February 11th, 2019 – Test Week

Good Morning Families,

This week your children will take their unit tests in both Reading and Math.  On top of that, conferences are being held on Tuesday and Thursday evening.  On top of that, our eggs will be delivered on Tuesday for our Embryology Unit.  Oh, and on top of that, we’ll host our Valentine’s Day party on Thursday!  Not to mention the weather may play havoc with our week.  Busy, busy, busy!!!

Hopefully Mother Nature will leave us alone this week!  We will have no spelling due to the unit ending, but there will be a Literacy Homework assignment.  In my Math class, I anticipate two review homework assignments on Monday and Tuesday.  As for Valentine’s day, I posted a list of all the kids’ names on this web site.  I also included a list on the weekly email.  Cards, small store bought candies, pencils, erasers…little gifts like that are approved.  Please don’t bring in an Apple Pie for every student!  Ha!

Thanks for reading, stay warm, and have a good week!

Eric Wachter

February 4th, 2019 – Poetry Week

Good Morning Families,

This week the kids will learn their lessons with the help of both narrative and free verse poems.  We’ll also revisit all the different types of figurative language we’ve learned, including alliteration, idioms, imagery, metaphors, onomatopoeias and similes.  We will have a new spelling list this week, and the kids will have literacy homework, as well.

In Math class we’ll continue practicing telling time, and then end the week with some graphing lessons.  Our Unit 4 test is fast approaching, so we’ll do some review, as well.  I’m hesitant to predict homework lessons this week, as I’m going to have to condense some lessons due to the cold day.  I anticipate homework this evening, but the rest of the week we’ll just have to play it by ear.

In Writing, the kids had fun completing their “What Am I?” animal book pages last week.  A few kids got to share, and we’ll finish that project up early this week.  Soon we’ll begin our preparation for writing a Personal Essay.

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Eric Wachter

January 28th, 2019 – Flight Week

Hello Families!

This week, our Reading lessons will focus on the history of flying.  We’ll read several cool stories about flight, and hopefully gain an appreciation how flying has changed the world.  We will have spelling this week, as well as a Literacy Homework.

In Math class, we’ve switched our focus to telling time.  This can be a little tricky for some kids, especially learning elapsed time.  Any extra practice with telling time at home is helpful!  In my Math class, I anticipate homework on the following nights.

Monday – Homework 4-7

Tuesday – Homework 4-8

Wednesday – No Homework

Thursday – Homework 4-9

Friday – Homework 4-10

In Writing, we’re in the process of creating a classroom book called, “What Am I?”  The kids are completing research on an animal, and will create a book page describing that animal.  The idea is to give clues to the animal, and how it adapts to survive, without saying what the name of the animal.  Then, the class gets to guess the animal!  It’s always a fun process and hopefully something I can share with you at conferences.

In Health, we just completed a unit on fitness and healthy eating.  I’m hoping that your child has brought some of what they learned home with them, especially when buying food at a grocery store.  Several of our lessons focused on advertising, and reading the labels on foods.  If nothing else, I think the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle was impressed upon them!

Our Second Step curriculum has shifted to “Emotion Management.”  We’re learning ways to stay calm when life gets stressful, as it so often does.  This week’s lesson is about “Test Anxiety,” which is a real thing, even for third graders!  Hopefully the kids will learn some strategies to stay calm, and not worry about the result of a test.  The most important thing is the process and preparation before exams.  If we can learn to prepare properly, the test itself will not be so stressful!

Lastly, I will be gone from school on Monday, due to a meeting I’ve been mandated to attend.  There is nothing I hate more than missing school, but I’m sure the kids will do fine in my absence!  Thanks for reading, stay warm, and have a great week!

Mr. Wachter

January 23rd, 2019 – Winter Wonderland!

Good Morning Families!

I hope you are all staying warm and safe this week.  I have been holding off sending this weekly update because I wasn’t sure when we were staring this week!  Considering it’s another short week, I’m going to cut spelling and the weekly literacy homework assignment.  Three days just isn’t a fair amount of time to practice.  We’ll simply condense the weeks activities and make the best of the situation.

In Math class, we’ll switch gears to measurement for the next couple of lessons.  Last week the kids struggled to compare fractions, so I’m not entirely sure how far we’ll get this week with our lessons.  I want to review fractions, and keep pace with measurement, so we’ll see how it goes.  Because of that…I’m going to play it by ear with homework for the next couple of nights.  My guess is they will have an assignment on Thursday, but don’t hold me to it.  We’ll figure it out as we go!

That’s about all for this week.  Stay warm and safe out there!

Mr. Wachter

January 14th, 2019 – MAP Testing Week

Hello Families!

This week your child will take their winter Map Test in both reading and math.  They took this exam in the fall, and now we’ll be able to see growth and progress with the winter edition.  The test is not based on things the kids have learned, but rather gives a general picture of their strengths and abilities.  The reading portion will take place on Tuesday and Thursday from 10:30 to 11:30.  Math will take place on Wednesday and Friday from 1:15 to 2:15.

In Reading this week, the kids will learn their lessons through a number of realistic fiction stories.  We’ll practice the strategy of Asking and Answering questions, as well as talk about Point of View and prefixes.  Due to the MAP test, we will practice spelling words, but we will not have a test this week.  Losing two days of instruction makes it hard to practice properly.  We will have a weekly Literacy Homework assignment, however.

In Math, we’ll continue to practice fractions.  I’ve been very pleased with the work my math class has done so far!  Fractions are such a tricky concept, and I’m proud of what they have shown.  You can expect homework in my class on the following nights.

Monday-Homework 4.3

Tuesday-Homework 4.4

Wednesday-No Homework

Thursday-Homework 4.5

Friday-No Homework

In Writing Class, we’ll continue to practice some winter poetry.  Most kids finished their Cinquain snow-globe poems last week, and they are now on display on their lockers.  They are so cool!  This week we’ll practice more poetry by writing some acrostic poems to decorate our classroom.

In Health, the kids will spend the next couple of weeks learning about proper diet, and learn exercises to stay healthy.  Our Second Step curriculum will begin to focus on strategies to handle our emotions, and how to calm down if you’re upset.  There is a home lesson attached to the weekly email.

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Eric Wachter

January 7th, 2019 – Welcome Back!

Hello Families!

Happy New Year!  I’m so glad to be back at school, and ready for the 2nd semester to begin!

This week, the kids will begin Unit 4 in both Reading and Math.  In Reading, we’ll learn our lessons by reading various folktales.  We’ll practice the strategies of “Asking and Answering Questions,” as well as focusing on point of view as we read.  The kids will have reading homework, as well as a new spelling list.

In Math, we’ll begin Unit 4 by learning about fractions.  The kids completed an Intervention with fractions a few weeks ago, so hopefully that background knowledge will help as they learn some new concepts.  The first few lessons are two day lessons, so there won’t be homework every night.  In my Math class you can expect homework on the following nights.

Monday – No Homework

Tuesday – Homework 4-1

Wednesday – No Homework

Thursday – Homework 4-2

Friday – No Homework

In writing, we’ll begin the semester by working on Cinquain poetry.  By the end of the week, we’ll hopefully have created some Cinquain Snow Globe poetry that will be displayed on their lockers.

Our Second Step lesson this week will wrap up the Bullying Unit from December.  We’ll also begin a series of Health lessons that will focus on exercise and eating a healthy diet.

Thanks for reading, and have a good week!

Eric Wachter

December 17th, 2018 – Unit Test Week!

Good Morning Families,

This week, your children will take their Unit 3 Reading and Math Tests.  We’ve spent a fair amount of time reviewing for these exams, and I’m confident they will do well on both tests!

Due to the Reading test, we will not have a spelling list this week.  They will have a Literacy Homework assignment, however.  My Math class will not have any homework this week due to the exam.

Arnold School has reached their next 10,000 Blue Coupon Challenge!  On Thursday, your child is encouraged to celebrate by wearing some crazy socks!

It is my honor to be your child’s teacher, and I’m so thankful the year is only half over!  I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season, and find time to celebrate your blessings with friends and family.

Warmest Regards,

Eric Wachter


December 10th, 2018 – Test Prep Week

Hello Families!

This week your child will wrap up Unit 3 in both Reading and Math.  We’ll practice a few more skills this week, before beginning some test review lessons towards the end of the week.

In Reading, our lessons this week will center on history, and specifically the Transcontinental Railroad.  We’ll read several stories about the railroad and how it changed American forever.  You can expect a spelling list and Literacy homework assignment to come home Monday.

In Math, we’ll continue practicing addition and subtraction, as well as practice place value through hundred thousands.  We’ll end the week with a couple of review lessons to prepare for the Unit 3 Test.  In my Math class, you can expect to see homework on the following nights.

Monday – Homework 3-18

Tuesday – No Homework

Wednesday – Homework 3-19

Thursday – Test Review Homework I

Friday – Test Review Homework II

In Writing, we’ll begin the final draft of our dinosaur research reports.  The kids have worked extremely hard so far, and I’m excited to see their finished products!

The kids will also hear the third lesson of our anti-bullying lessons this week.  The topic will be “Refusing Bullying,” and what to do when you witness bullying.

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Eric Wachter

December 3rd, 2018 – The Home Stretch!

Hello Families!

Hard to believe we are in the home stretch of quarter two and first semester.  We have much to do in the next three weeks, but I’m sure time will fly by on our way to Winter Break.

This week, we will combine the skills for Unit 3, Weeks 3 and 4.  We’ll practice summarizing and finding the main idea in a number of cool stories about outer space.  Our spelling words will come from week 3, and you can expect a practice list to come home on Monday.  The kids will also have a Literacy Homework assignment coming home Monday, as well.  Please remind the kiddos they need to return that assignment by Friday in order to earn their bonus recess at the end of the day.

In Math, we’ll continue to practice subtraction, and sprinkle in some review of addition.  In my Math class, you can expect these homework assignments to come home during the week.  Of course, these are subject to change if a lesson doesn’t go well, or I think we need more time to practice.

Monday-Homework 3-13

Tuesday-Homework 3-14

Wednesday-Homework 3-15

Thursday-Homework 3-16

Friday-No Homework

In Writing, the kids finally began to write their rough drafts for their dinosaur research last week.  I anticipate we’ll begin the final draft towards the end of the week this week.

Lastly, the kids will hear the second lesson of our “Anti-Bullying” unit in the Second Step lessons.  This week, the lesson focuses on how to report bullying when you witness it, or are the focus of bullying.  There is a home practice page attached to the weekly email if you wanted to have a follow up discussion at home.

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Eric Wachter