Friday, February 21, 2020

The Week of February 24, 2020

Happy International Montessori Education Week!  I hope you take some time this week to reflect on how the Montessori philosophy has impacted your life!   This Friday is a special dress UP day: feel free to dress up as your favorite Montessori material!

Social studies lessons will include exploring the Civil War, important Americans of the mid-20th century, and the Australia studies.  You will have a vocabulary quiz Monday based upon the words your were given last week.  In addition, please complete your weekly and activities.  Finally, study the appropriate word study list below for a quiz on Friday, Feb 28th.

Arrow Group

 Plus Group

 Smile Group

Have a spectacular weekend,
Mr. Trent

Saturday, February 15, 2020

The Week of February 17th, 2020

Happy Presidents' Day!  

This week's social studies lessons will include investigations about the causes of the Civil War, the space race, and the political & physical geography of Australia.  In addition to the followup work assigned after these lessons, also be sure to complete your weekly and assignment.  

Please study the following spelling words for a quiz on Friday, February 21.

Arrow Group

 Plus Group

 Smile Group

Please study the following vocabulary words for a quiz on Monday, February 24th.

4th Grade Vocabulary List

Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson- a skilled confederate general who earned his nickname during the battle of Bull Run.

Robert E. Lee- led the Army of Northern Virginia (one of the most successful Confederate armies in the Civil War).

Ulysses S. Grant- General of the Union armies during the Civil War.

Jefferson Davis- President of the Confederate States of America.

Abraham Lincoln- President of the United States of America during the Civil War.

Battle of Bull Run- The first major battle of the Civil War

Proclamation- a document that announces something officially or publicly. 

States’ rights- the rights and powers held by the state government, rather than the federal government

Emancipation Proclamation- issued on January 1, 1863, this order freed slaves in states that had seceded from the Union. 

Gettysburg Address- A famous speech Abraham Lincoln gave in 1863 at a dedication of a cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.  It is considered to be one of the most inspiring speeches in American history. 

5th Grade Vocabulary List

Project Apollo- a series of space missions designed to send to people to the Moon

Neil Armstrong- the first man to step onto the moon in 1969

Information age- the period following World War II and leading up to the 21st century marked by new technologies in communication, entertainment, and business that dramatically changed American life

Sputnik- The first artificial satellite to orbit the earth.  It was launched in October of 1957 by the Soviet Union. 

Cosmonaut- Russian name for a traveler into space

Network- A group of radio or television stations, which broadcast many of the same programs, but in different parts of the one country

Prime time- the time on TV between 7:00 and 10:00 when the highest number of people are watching TV. This is when networks put on their best shows.

Satellite- an artificial body placed in orbit around the earth or moon or another planet in order to collect information or for communication

Interstate- one of a system of expressways covering the 48 contiguous states

FCC- “Federal Communications Commission, an independent U.S. government regulatory agency that oversees all interstate and international communications.

6th Grade Vocabulary List

Australia- the smallest continents on Earth located southeast of Asia. 

“Outback”- the flat, dry interior region of Australia

Ayers Rock (Uluru)- Australia’s most famous landmark.  It is a massive red sandstone rock formation located in the barren lands of central Australia. 

Great Dividing Range- Australia’s longest mountain range that divides the eastern coastal region from the inland desert region. 

Great Victoria Desert- the largest desert in Australia that is located in the southern and western part of the continent

Coral Sea- lies along Australia’s northeast coast.  It contains several small island called the Coral Islands.

Great Barrier Reef- a living coral reef that extends more than 1,400 miles along Australia’s northeast coast.

Ecosystem- all the living things, from plants to animals to microscopic organisms, that share an environment.  

Arable- land that is suitable for farming

Mount Kosciuszko- Australia’s highest mountain peak

Have an amazing weekend,
Mr. Trent

Friday, February 7, 2020

The Week of February 10, 2020

Congratulations on a wonderful performance of Charles Ellis Presents: The Kingdom of the Great River!  The audience absolutely loved your musical creation and enjoyed learning about the systems of the human body.

This week, we can get back to our "normal" schedule...hurray!  Social studies lessons will include discussions about women's suffrage, the civil rights movement, and environmental issues in Canada.  Please complete you weekly grammar practice assignment and current event comprehension activity.  You will have a vocabulary quiz on Monday based upon the words you were given last week.

Please study the following word study sorts for a quiz on Friday, February 14th:

Arrow Group

 Plus Group

 Smile Group

Have a lovely week,
Mr. Trent

Thursday, January 30, 2020

The Week of February 3, 2020

Welcome to Musical Week! I'm so excited for you to perform the show you've been working on so hard for the past few weeks! "The Kingdom of the Red River" is going to be a smash hit!

Most of our time this week will be spent getting ready for the musical. You will have a few lessons, but your followup work will be modified to fit with your shorter work periods. You will NOT have quill or newsela this week, but you will need to study for a vocabulary quiz on Monday, February 10th. Here are your words:

4th Grade Vocabulary

plantations, Large farms where crops are raised 

slavery, The practice of forcing people to work without pay as enslaved people, and denying them the freedom to decide how to live their lives 

survival, The state of continuing to exist, especially in spite of difficult conditions

value, Usefulness or importance

wages, Money that is paid or received for work conductor, n. A person who led or directed enslaved Africans to freedom during the Civil War using the Underground Railroad 

contributions,. Money, materials, information, or labor given by someone to help others 

gourd, A plant whose hard-shelled fruit is sometimes dried and hollowed out to be used as a tool 

passengers, Enslaved Africans who traveled to freedom on the Underground Railroad 

rebellious, Resisting, or fighting, being controlled by someone else

5th Grade Vocabulary

Draft- Required military service for males 18 years-26 years during a time of need, if your number is picked you have to go

Geneva Accords- This document divided Vietnam at the 17th parallel

USS Maddux- U.S. ship that was reported to have been shot at by the North Vietnamese

Deferment- Getting out of or putting off war service

War Powers Act - Limited the President's ability to send troops

Henry Kissinger- National Security Advisor that worked with Nixon and secretly met with one of North Vietnam's negotiators to end the war

Kent State University - College students were protesting the war and National Guardsmen were brought in that fired into the crowd and killed 4 people

Containment- To keep an idea or thing isolated

Guerrilla Warfare- a Military strategy used by Viet Cong that used hit and run tactics

Napalm- Gasoline based bomb that set fire to the jungle

6th Grade Vocabulary

Rain shadow- an area on the side of a mountain away from the wind that receives little rainfall

Permafrost- permanently frozen layer of the ground below the top layer of soil

Prime Minister- the most powerful political leader in Canada. He or she is the leader of the political party that has the most people voted in to be members of parliament.

Premier- the most powerful political leader in a province. He or she is the leader of the political party that has the most people voted in to be members of the legislature.

Federal Government - A system of government in which individual states share authority with a central government. Examples include Canada and the United States.

Quebec- A province located in the east-central part of Canada. Predominantly French-speaking, it has sought independence from Canada at several points to preserve its cultural heritage.

Champlain- French explorer in Nova Scotia who established a settlement on the site of modern Quebec (1567-1635)

Iroquois- a family of North American Indian languages

Hudson Bay- an inland sea in northern Canada

French Canadian- a Canadian descended from early French settlers and whose native language is French

Break a leg,

Mr. Trent

Sunday, January 26, 2020

The Week of January 27th, 2020

The last year of January is already here! We have so much to do this week to get ready for Charles Ellis Presents! The work you have done so far is astounding, and I'm so excited to see you on stage. We will begin to practice without our scripts this week, so be sure to memorize your lines if you have a part. We will also be continuing our work on the set and costumes. It's two weeks until the big night! Your studies this week will include continued work with your novel studies, a grammar practice at, and a current event article to read at In addition, we will begin our new structured writing activity! We will be writing an informative essay about what you are currently studying in social studies. On Monday you will have a quiz on the vocabulary words you were given to study last week. You will have a word study quiz this Friday based on the following sorts:

See you Monday!
Mr. Trent

Friday, January 17, 2020

The Week of January 20, 2020

"The time is always right to do what is right" - Martin Luther King Jr.

Are you ready for another awesome week at Ellis? I hope so because we have a good one headed your way!

We will not have school Monday so we can celebrate MLK Jr. Day. When you return Tuesday, you will have a regular school day (there will be no explorations). Lessons this week will include novel studies and grammar practice using Your newsela current event article is about the recent wildfires in Australia. Social studies lessons will be about The Korean War, the life of the American Indian during westward expansion, and Canada studies. You will NOT have a word study quiz this week. You will need to study the following vocabulary words for a quiz on Monday, January 27th.

4th Grade Vocabulary List

Abolitionist Movement- an effort by many groups and individuals to end slavery in the U.S.

William Lloyd Garrison- Published The Liberator (a newspaper that called for the complete and immediate abolition of slavery by peaceful means); founded the New England Anti- Slavery Society

Frederick Douglass- Famous speaker, writer, newspaper editor, and reformer who had escaped slavery; his intellect and demeanor were proof for many slaves, once freed, could function as independent U.S. citizens

Underground Railroad- Network of abolitionists (like escaped slave Harriet Tubman), paths, and places that secretly helped slaves escape North of Canada

Uncle Tom’s Cabin- Book published in 1852 that depicted the horrors of slavery; made slavery a moral issue for many

John Brown’s Raid- In 1859, John Brown and fellow abolitionists attacked a federal arsenal in Virginia and tried to start a slave rebellion; he was hung for treason and became a martyr

Discrimination-  to make a difference in treatment or favor based on something other than individual merit

Abolish-  to do away with something

The Liberator- An anti-violence abolitionist newspaper first published in 1831, which is seen as the start of the abolitionist movement

13th Amendment of the Constitution- officially ended the practice of slavery in the United States 

5th Grade Vocabulary List

Communism- a system where the government owns the factories and natural resources and controls the production of goods; people are not free

Cold War- the state of tension without actual fighting between the United States and the Soviet Union, and which divided the world into two camps

Iron Curtain- the imaginary dividing line between eastern and western Europe during the Cold War

Berlin Airlift- When U.S. and Allied airplanes delivered supplies to West Berlin every day fro 321 days.  

Aggression- attack against a person or country

Blockade- surrounding an enemy’s territory in wartime to keep people and supplies from passing

Nikita Khrushchev- premier of the Soviet Union and head of the Soviet Communist Party during the Cold War 

Cuban Missile Crisis- In 1962, the U.S. learned that the Soviet Union had built missile launching pads in Cuba. 

Joseph McCarthy- a Wisconsin senator who accused U.S. state department officials of being Communist. 

North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)- Signed in 1949, it created an alliance between the U.S. and European countries to protect itself from Communist aggression. 

6th Grade Vocabulary List

Hudson Bay- located in Central-Eastern Canada

St. Lawrence River- connects the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean 

Canadian Shield- a large geological region of Eastern and Southern Canada that has rocky, rolling landscape and thin soil.   It has an abundance of forests and mineral deposits. 

Great Lakes- 5 large bodies of water located along the border of the U.S. and Canada

Ottawa- the capital of Canada, located in the province of Ontario

Rocky Mountains- a major mountain system of the United States and Canada, extending 3,000 miles from Alaska south to New Mexico

Tundra- a vast, level, treeless plain in the arctic regions. The ground beneath the surface of the tundra is frozen even in summer

Extraction- The process of removing natural resources from the ground—like harvesting trees, mining minerals and gathering raw materials to be used in the production of products.

Transportation corridor- a route that makes travel and trade easier

Transportation barriers- physical features that make it difficult to travel or trade

This year's Boosterthon Fun Run was a smashing success. Not only did we make our school goal of $18,000, but we also achieved a 100% participation rate in our classroom! We have a number of incentives because of your hard work. First, we will have a pot-luck lunch on Wednesday. Feel free to bring in some food to share. On Thursday, you will be able to view a movie in the afternoon. Congrats on your hard work and generous pockets!

Finally, 6th graders will be attending the Mountain Film Fest on Friday, Jan. 24th. Be sure you have returned your permission slip to attend.

Have a wonderful weekend,
Mr. Trent