Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Assessment Results

GMAS and MAP assessment results have been sent home today.  The GMAS scores are from last year's administration of the test.  The MAP results are from the beginning of this school year's administration.  Here are the 2017-2018 end-of-year benchmark scores for the MAP:

Grade Level
Reading RIT – Lexile
Math RIT
205 - 691
210 - 781
214 - 853

The reports are yours to keep.  Please let me know if you have any questions.  We will discuss these in more detail at our term 1 parent/teacher conferences.

Friday, August 25, 2017

The Week of August 28, 2017

Welcome to the last week of August!  I'm preparing some great lessons this week concerning the outcomes of the Civil and Revolutionary wars, diagramming sentences, fraction and decimal computation, and studies of outer space.  We will also continue our novel studies of "Shiloh", "How to Eat Fried Worms", "Hatchet", and "Ben & Me".  I've enjoyed reading and talking about these stories with you!

You will be given a new word study list this Monday to work with throughout the week.  There will be a quiz on spelling and sorting the words Friday.

As always, be sure to hand in your signed progress report Monday morning.

I look forward to learning with you,
Mr. Trent

dividing decimals with the large skittles and fraction pieces

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Pink & Say

This week's read-aloud time includes the story "Pink & Say" by Patricia Palacco.  If you'd like to hear it again, check out the following video.  It also includes the wonderful artwork found within the pages of this powerful story.

"Pink and Say" by Patricia Palacco 

Friday, August 18, 2017

The Week of August 21, 2017

Are you excited to see the Great American Solar Eclipse on your day off?!  I'm looking forward to seeing the splendor of this once-in-a-lifetime natural phenomenon! Check out this awesome interactive site about the eclipse before you experience it for yourself Monday!

The rest of the week promises to be a great one!  Lessons will continue associated with the battles of the Civil and Revolutionary War, fraction and decimal computation, and parts of speech.  Everyone will have a vocabulary test Friday.  These words will be taken from your science and social studies lessons.  Friday is also a free dress-UP day for school pictures!  Be sure to wear a smile!  If you are planning on ordering books from the Scholastic Book Club, please do so by the end of the week.

Your weekly progress report and PE permission form are due back to me with a signature when you return to school Tuesday.

Have a great weekend!
Mr. Trent

plate tectonics maps

"flags of the world" choice work

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

6th Grade Athletics

Please encourage your students to participate in athletics at 6th grade.  We compete against other Chatham County Middle Schools.  Cross country and Swimming are held together with a  district coach, but the other sports are Ellis teams.  We have Volleyball (girls), basketball and soccer teams.  Cross Country has begun, time trials are this week, but meets don’t begin until September.  A pre-participation physical packet must be completed by a physician and on file with Coach Lesley before students can come to any practice or competitions.  Please see our tab on the Ellis page to stay up to date with all of the information. 

Monday, August 14, 2017

Word Study Practice

Part of our language arts curriculum involves word study lessons.  The word study approach to spelling focuses on specific spelling patterns to teach words.  By identifying patterns in words, students can better understand the rules of the English language.  Students have taken a placement assessment that identified the developmental level group in which they will be a part.  Each group will receive word study work associated with their specific needs.

Every other week you will have ten word study words to explore.  Each of the words will follow a specific spelling pattern.  Your goal is to work to identify the patterns associated with each word and to us that knowledge to help you spell them correctly.  There will be a quiz on Friday to check how well you learned the words and spelling patterns.  You will not only have to spell the words correctly on the quiz, but also sort them into the right pattern category.

There are a number of ways you can study your words.  Check out a few of the below:

Friday, August 11, 2017

The Week of August 14th, 2017

Before we get into next week's plans, let's spend some time focusing on this weekend's homework.  First, I've sent home the first weekly progress reports of the year!  Please review, sign, and return the entire packet to school Monday.  In addition, please sign and return the last page of the student handbook and the form from Nurse Chris.  I appreciate your help with this important paperwork.

This week is shaping up to be a great one!  MAP testing has been completed for most students.  We will discuss the results of the test at our first parent/teacher conference.  I'm using this data to help me create lessons catered to each students' specific needs in math and reading.  I'm planning lessons on the 13 colonies, stars, European geography, adding fractions, decimal computation, and diagramming sentences just to name a few!  GEP classes and band rehearsal for all grade levels will begin this week.  Please be sure to keep an eye on the daily schedule so you can be on time for your lessons.  

We will be starting our word study lessons this week, as well.  Please study your words for at least 10 minutes each evening.  For the quiz on Friday you will not only have to spell them correctly, but also sort them into the correct category.  Your other homework is to read a book of your choice for 20 nightly.  If you need a book to read, I have great news: the media center will be open this week!    

I hope you enjoy your weekend,
Mr. Trent

geometry three-part card work

mentoring students in Ms. Kirsten's Classroom 


Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Worktime Happenings

Students in our classroom are busy exploring a number of topics!  I've observed adding fractions using the fraction pieces, multiplying decimals with the checkerboard, and learning about the planets using matching cards.  These are just a few of the many awesome works being completed this week in our classroom.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

No School Monday, August 21

From SCCPSS Central Office:

Good afternoon Parents –
This message is to inform you that there will be no school for students on Monday, August 21, 2017, as a result of conditions associated with the Total Solar Eclipse.  During a solar eclipse, the moon passes between the sun and the Earth and blocks the light from the sun.  Trying to look directly at the sun during the eclipse can be hazardous to eyesight.

The District places a priority on student safety at all times.  The eclipse presents a unique situation which creates numerous logistical challenges for a school district of this size resulting in conditions that could place students at risk.  Additionally, the full phase of the solar event will take place during school dismissal.  

August 21, 2017 will be considered an inclement weather day off for students. A make-up day will not be required. 

Friday, August 4, 2017

The Week of August 7, 2017

The first full week of school promises to bring plenty of opportunities for fun and learning!  We will have our first Montessori work time where I will be giving small-group lessons while students are working on appropriate choice work.  Everyone will keep track of their work on a workplan.  These workplans will be sent home as a progress report Friday.  Please sign and return it Monday.

All students will have a vocabulary quiz Friday based upon words taken from the science and social studies lessons.  Please study these words (that are written in your workplan packet) each evening to be ready for your quiz.  In addition, please read a book of your choice for at least 20 minutes after school.

The first administration of the MAP assessment will take place this week.  This assessment will inform me of strengths and needs of each student in both math and language studies. I will use the results to plan my lessons.  The results will also be used to measure growth throughout the year.

I will be sending home a number of papers to be reviewed and signed by your family.  Please return these items as soon as possible.

If you have not done so already, please sign up for the Remind program.  I will use this online tool to communicate important messages with you.

Have a wonderful weekend,
Mr. Trent

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Welcome Back!

Welcome back, Ellis Bobcats!  I hope you had a wonderful summer, and you are ready for a fun and exciting year in upper elementary!  I've been working hard to create an engaging environment and to plan interesting lessons for you.  Our school has undergone some major renovations over the past few months.  Below is an informational sheet about the renovation progress.  Enjoy your last few moments of summer...I'll see you tomorrow morning in room 21!