I hope you have enjoyed your time together with family the last two weeks! School launches again Monday morning, and there are a few things I'd like you to be aware of.
Students should have completed heir science fair projects before break, but now is the time for them to bring all their results to share. They should bring their notes, pictures, notebooks, sketches, etc. They do not need to bring any of the actual items they used- only their observations, notes, results, photos etc. I expect to see them all with this in hand first thing Monday morning!
Battle of the Books:
Monday morning is the launch of our 2016 Battle of the Books! Third through eighth grade will spend the next several weeks reading and strategizing before going head to head with the other classes in fast paced battles that test comprehension. On Monday the official CHPCS list of 29 books will be released. Classes will work together to not only read these books, but master them. Because each student can answer only three questions perbattle, it must be a team effort. Which class will come out on top? It's anyone's game at this point. Be sure to ask your student what BOB book they are reading. You are more than welcome to read it with them or even to them!
How are books chosen?
The Battle of the Book list is chosen by a team of teachers and administrators. They review the National Librarian’s Association recommendations, Newberry Medal winners, Caldecott Medal winners, and other notable award winners. From these lists they find books that range from the lowest reading level participating to 3 years above the highest grade participating. From there they ensure that we have fiction and nonfiction, historical fiction, classics, sports fiction, animal fiction, adventure, and a biography. The last consideration is a balance between female and male characters. The idea is to have at least one book in the list that appeals to every child participating.
Why was my child assigned a book? I thought they chose what they wanted to read!
This year in sixth grade we have a lot of avid readers. Many of the books are short, quick, easy reads. Others are lengthy books that take time to digest. For this reason I will assign them their first read. I assign books to get us moving forward and to make sure that as a class we cover as much ground as possible early on. They may choose any subsequent book they read.
What if I think a book is over my child’s head or is inappropriate for them?
The beauty of Battle of the Books is that it is a team effort. No one child is expected to read every book. In fact, it’s best if they don’t read every book. Choose 2 or 3 from the list that you are OK with and read those.
Can my child listen to the book/watch the movie/have it read to them etc?
YES! The idea is for children to be exposed to literature and to understand the story. They can have it read to them by an adult or older sibling, listen to it on tape, or read it themselves. They can watch the movie, but be careful; often the movie is not the same as the book.
Morning Car Line Drop-off:
Thanks to a great idea that came out of our first Teacher Tea, we will be trying something new for morning drop-off. From January 4 to the 14, you will have two options for morning drop-off.
If you would like to drop off your child and then drive away, please pull up in the loading/unloading zone, allow your child to safely exit on the curb/passenger side, and then exit back out into the road. Your child will enter through the front door between 7:45 and 8:00 like normal.
If you would like to sit in your car while you wait, or if you would like to walk your child down to their classroom, please park in the gravel lot. From 7:45 to 8:00, the SIDE DOOR (south wing) will be opened for families or children to enter there as well.
Please be sure that you are NOT idling or parking in the loading/unloading zone at any time during the regular school day.
I look forward to seeing you all again soon!