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Principal's News


~ December 2017 Newsletter ~ 

We Wish our Benjamin Franklin families and friends a
Happy and Healthy Holiday Season!

 Student PTA Holiday Shoppe Image

The first week of December, the students were given the opportunity to shop for gifts for family members and friends. 

The BFPTA will be making a donation to the Lakeland Caring Closet from the BFPTA Holiday Shoppe 2017 profits in the amount of $1,500.                                                                                                                                    Thank you to all parent volunteers!

 Student PTA Holiday Shoppe Image Student PTA Holiday Shoppe Image  

Check out what has been happening in our classrooms!     

Kindergarten News!
Kindergarteners are learning, growing, and having fun in kindergarten!  We are using our ipads in class! We are learning to CODE! Thank you to our parent volunteers for your help in making center time successful! 

  • In Fundations, we continue to learn our letter names, sounds, and sight words (I, am, me, is, the, like, am, go, it, see and we). Kindergarten Student Authors and Illustrators Image
  • In English Language Arts, we are learning what fiction is, what a noun is, what are the parts of a storybook, what story elements are, and what the importance of sequencing and retelling a story. 
  • We have begun our ELA centers with a focus on the alphabet, word work, rhyming, syllables, beginning sounds and RAZ kids.  We are becoming better readers while working in our guided reading groups. 
  • We are learning to become authors and illustrators by completing a variety of writing tasks and working in our writing journals.  Our main writing goal at this time is adding details and labeling. 
  • In Math, we are learning how to compare 2D and 3D shapes and comparing length, weight, capacity and numbers 1-10.  Our math centers include Dreambox, file folder games, counting cubes, dice games, number writing, and shape puzzles. 
  • We love being scientists. The students are studying how the sun plays an important role of warming the earth. We are also exploring how to gather information to predict and prepare for severe weather. The students are enjoying learning about the weather and being meteorologists. 
  • In Social Studies, we have learned the meaning and importance of Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving. 
  • The Kindergarten Team would like to wish you all a very Happy Holiday Season!

First Grade News! 
We continued to be excited to have ipads for every student in first grade! Students have been using their ipads in all subject areas!

  • We learned all about the first Thanksgiving and enjoyed a Thanksgiving Feast with our classmates! Grade 1 Thanksgiving Feast ImageThanks you class volunteers for providing all the food!
  • During ELA, we will begin our unit on Fables.  It will focus on characters, setting, problem and morals.  We will also begin Fundations Unit 6, learning about base words and suffixes. 
  •  In math, we will continue our work on place value using subtraction.
  • In science, we will start our exciting unit on the Rainforest.  We will study animals, layers and climate. This unit will lead up to our study of the holidays and end with our Winter Craft Day on December 20, 2017.     

Second Grade News!
Second grade is continuing to enrich the holiday season of Thanksgiving with non- fiction comprehension strategies involving Native Americans and the Pilgrims.  We enjoyed a fabulous field trip to Madden Farm in November where our students were involved in a many hands-on programs focused on the lives of Native Americans. 

Grade 2 Students on Chromebooks image

  • This year, all the students in 2nd grade have Chromebook and we are continuing to learn how to CODE!
  • In math, we started the study of place value to the thousands. This will include the strategies for adding two digit numbers.  We will continue our use of the tape diagram and number bonds which are new math organizers endorsed by the Common Core curriculum.
  • We concluded our Measurement Unit in Science and had fun with a grow beast experiment.

Third Grade News!
In ELA, the third grade has been busy reading and writing. Students have recently completed a unit which focuses on how children around the world access books.

They have been working hard to provide text-based evidence and strong restates when responding to text-based questions. Additionally, they have been busy identifying main ideas and key details from texts they have read.

Students are exploring the culture of Japan through fictional and non-fictional texts. Grade 3 Chinese Culture image

On December 8, we had a performance from The Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts. This in-school performance consisted of musicians playing Chinese music on traditional Chinese instruments, as well as dancers performing a traditional ribbon dance. The artists were born and educated in China.

In math, the students have completed units on Place Value, Estimating Sums, and Estimating Differences. They are currently working on a unit called Understanding Multiplication. Within this unit, students will model multiplication and use arrays to multiply. Next, students will move into an Understanding Division unit where students will relate division to subtraction and multiplication.

Fourth Grade News!
The fourth grade students are off and running! There are a lot of exciting things happening in our classrooms.  We are using our chromebooks daily and can’t wait to share our projects with you!

  • In math, we are in the middle of our unit on multiplication and problem solving strategies. All studentsGrade 4 Students Using Chromebooks image should be studying their multiplication facts at home.
  • In ELA, the focus has been on reading non-fiction texts and finding the main idea and supportingdetails.
  • The students are starting the measurement unit in science, where we will be measuring mass, volume, time, temperature and length.   

 We are also finishing our unit on the Native American tribes of New York State. The students are identifying how geography influenced their lives and how they used natural resources to meet their needs and wants. 

Fifth Grade News!
The fifth grade is busy working on studying the human body in science.

  • Recently, every class had the opportunity to have a video conference with a professor/scientist fromGrade 5 Traveling Science Performance image Saint Louis to learn more about the human body! He was able to demonstrate a human heart, brain, and lungs. The children were able to ask questions and learn how to keep these organs healthy by exercising and not smoking.
  • We also had an assembly organized by our PTA that was from the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia.
  • In ELA, we have been concentrating on narrative writing, focusing on descriptive language.
  • Additionally, we are finishing our study of the novel Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan.
  • In our next ELA unit, we will be learning all about how scientists communicate what they learn while studying the rainforest.
  • In mathematics, we are finishing our unit on multiplication and division, as well as numerical expressions.
  • We will be starting fractions in January.

 Physical Education News!
Currently in Physical Education, all grades are working on developing their foot-eye and soccer skills. 

  • Students recently finished interactive soccer stations, which gave students a chance to practice passing, dribbling, and punting.  
  • Students have transitioned into soccer games, where the focus is on teaching students the positions in soccer, as well as proper spacing on the field. Previous to our soccer unit, 3rd-5th grade classes had their collaboration and teamwork skills tested in our indoor and outdoor challenge courses. 
  • These challenge courses provided students the opportunity to improve their physical skills in climbing, balance, and coordination; while demonstrating support for their classmates.
  • Students have also participated in various fitness testing such as; a distance run, sit-up and push-up test, a sit and reach, and a shuttle run. These tests help measure components such as cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility, sprinting speed, and agility.

Music News!
Our Winter Choral concert was truly magical! Congratulations to all 4th and 5th grade performers!

Grades 4 and 5 Winter Choral ImageGrades 4 and 5 Winter Choral Image 

Art News!
We will celebrate the accomplishments of our Gallery One participants on January 11, 2018! Please come to district office to cheer for those students whose work was selected.

What’s happening in the library?

Grades K-5
This year in the library, all students began the year with a unit on Digital Citizenship. It is very important for students to prepare for a world where technology is everywhere and to educate students on how to navigate the Internet in a positive way, Students learned about staying safe online, visiting appropriate websites and cyberbullying.

Children is kindergarten have been learning the Ben Franklin library routine of selecting books and signing them out. We have also had lessons about the parts of a book and what authors and illustrators do.  Children have also been learning the difference between fiction and non-fiction and the composition of a non-fiction book. Most recently, we have begun a Mo Willems author study.

First Grade
Children in first grade have been identifying the difference between fiction and non-fiction books. They have also been learning about the Table of Contents, Glossary and Index found in non-fiction books. Most recently, students began an author study of Robert Munsch.

Grades 2-5
Keyboarding with accuracy and speed is an essential skill in our society. Students in grades 2- 5 are using the Typing Agent keyboarding program to help learn this skill. Typing Agent puts an emphasis on keyboarding accuracy while the student maintains proper finger placement and posture. Each student progresses at their own rate. The program provides a cycle of review, demonstration, practice and assessment.

Every attempt is made to have outdoor recess!  This is an important time to get exercise, fresh air and have some needed playtime.  Students are generally outside for 20 minutes so hats, gloves and warm winter jackets are essential. Make sure your child is prepared with warm outerwear.   Label all outerwear items.

Thanks for your cooperation.
Keep Healthy!

 In January, we will reveal our new One School, One Book!
Reading aloud at home is valuable because it better prepares your child to be an effective reader.  But it is also a fun, worthwhile family activity.  With the One School, One Book program, we aim to build a community of readers at Benjamin Franklin…Everyone students, teachers and administrative staff will be participating, and we can all reap the many benefits.

Looking Ahead…
Winter Recess / School Closed – December 23, 2017 - January 1, 2018

Happy New Year 2018!
January 8                  PTA meeting @ 7:00 pm
January 11               Gallery One @ 5:00-7:00 p.
January 15               Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day – School Closed
January 17               Engineering Night for Grades K-1 @ 6:30-8:00 p.m.
January 19               Tall and Small Ball for Boys @ 6:30-8:00 p.m. 

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