Dear Parents and Guardians (as well as students),
   I would like to talk about two things in particular that I would like to address as a team before they become a larger problem.
1. The making of the loop bracelets. while I like the bracelets and I applaud those that can make them, they can not be made during instructional time in the class. Nor can they be sold at school or orders collected for them. They are quickly becoming a distraction and I do not want to ban them from coming to school as a whole.

2. The drawing of comics. I love comics! I have read them for years and I enjoy seeing what the students can do, however, they too are becoming a distraction during the instructional day. Students are putting a tremendous amount of effort into them, but they are passing them around during class and working on them instead of paying attention. I know there will be a few times that students will be asked to draw comics to represent content area material, but the comics they are drawing are not school or class related and must not come out during class time. I really don't want to take them or tear them up. 

I would greatly appreciate your support on these matters with your student. 
As a STEM school we want as much technology inside the classroom as we can get, and when that helps boost a lesson in Math, it's even better. This past week, through donations of batteries from you wonderful parents, we were able to use our clicker system for the first time. By utilizing assessments with this system, I can get instant feedback on what areas we need to focus on, and with which students. The data collected helps to differentiate the class, allowing students to get the most out of instruction time. 
We also had a visit from Principal Auer. He came in to tell the sixth graders how great they have been as school leaders and role models for the younger classes. That makes us all proud! 
Also, in Math we watched a video about how math and algorithms have changed the face of origami,  then we folded some "fortune tellers" that we used as question generators to ask one another questions about the printing press. Things are always happening in sixth grade! 
I don't say the above lightly. But, I do have the best group of sixth graders ever to be assembled! Parents, you should be even more proud. As we all know our parent pick up line is not the fastest in town (yet), but today our sixth grade leaders helped us all get finished at about 4:15! They braved the rain with us to help students get to cars. Sixth graders stepped up and helped keep the younger students quiet and calm and preventing them from horse playing. This is a great group of kids.

As we keep moving forward with the school year I have nothing but high expectations for all of you, students. Working as a team we will make it through subjects that might not be our favorite and excel in them. Together we will do the best!

As we continue to get ready for the arrival of texts (eta Friday) we are continually reviewing, re-teaching where necessary, and learning some new foundational skills. We will also be working on writing, creating stories whenever possible, and poetry, but most of all we will be working on the mechanics of writing. We will be working intently on mechanics when we do writing in social studies. The skill of writing is not restricted to language arts or reading, it is a cross curricular skill. Plus, I like writing (do you remember what I said about writing?).

I hope that as we continue to bring the parent pickup times down with the help of these great sixth grade leaders, we can finally have our informational sessions about the magazine and the building sessions. We will do these sometime after the Labor Day weekend.

In the meantime, bask in the glow that is your own awesomeness. You all deserve it. I am as proud as a mother goose!