Thursday, December 4, 2014

What's Going on in Petunia's Classroom?

Our class has been studying lots of interesting things lately!
In our science class, we've been working on rocks and minerals.  We'll be doing certain tests to figure out different types of minerals based on their properties.  In social studies, we've been working on using an atlas.  The students LOVE atlas work!
 We're working on adding and subtracting large numbers with regrouping in math.  Today, we found the difference in height between the Citigroup  Center and the Empire State Building.  In case you were wondering, the Empire State Building is taller by 335 feet!
Roald Dahl has made his magical way into fourth grade again this year.  Last week we read The Twits with partners.  This week, we're reading George's Marvelous Medicine.  While reading aloud, students are practicing reading with voice and then answering comprehension questions that correspond with the chapters read.  In addition, Mrs. Stone has been reading a book called, Nickel Bay Nick.  It's a Great Stone Face Nominee.  The kids are really enjoying being with their peers from Mr. Wetmore's class while listening to Mrs. Stone.
On a different note, the PTO supported the purchase of a voice amplification system for our class.  Boy, has it made a HUGE difference!  Students are able to better listen and better hear my voice.  In addition, we've been able to take the amplifier on the road!  We've brought it with us to the Kilton Library, The Hatchery, and various visitors to our classroom as well as students have been able to use the tool.  Thanks to the PTO - this was MONEY WELL SPENT!!!
Our last day of school is December 19th.  Enjoy the two week break.  Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 1, 2014


HOMEWORK LINK IS TO THE RIGHT --------------------------------------------->>>>>>>>

Student Survey

Today, students in Ms. Allen's class took a survey on school.  Ask your child about it today!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Over the River and Through the Woods....

to Grandmother's house we go!
Only a few days before American families will be celebrating Thanksgiving!  We have two days of school this week!  We have some exciting activities planned for this short week including ornament making for the tree at the Enfield Shaker Museum!  Stay tuned for pictures!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Welcome to our HOUSE PARTY!

      Welcome to our classroom!  It's Open House night (and the night before Halloween)!  We have studied many things so far this year.  We have learned about monarch butterflies and their life cycle.  Visitors should check out our Work in Progress folders to see our pre-published butterfly books.
     In addition to studying butterflies, we have begun our study on the layers of the earth.  There are 4 layers that we study.  The inner core, outer core, mantle, and crust.
In social studies, we have learned about maps.  We started by reading Me on the Map and made our very own Me on the Map books! After that, we pulled out small globes. These are models of the big model!  The students have reviewed the continents and oceans.  In addition, they worked on mini maps and globes books where they learned about the Tropic of Capricorn, Tropic of Cancer, Equator, and lines of latitude and longitude.
   Math has been a whole new experience for us!  The district adopted Envision Math last spring and our fourth graders love it!  W'eve studied place value, rounding, multiplication, and number patterns.     Today we finished reading The Saturday Boy  by David Fleming.  The students are working on a journal entry about the story.  We've also been working on reading articles in Time for Kids and StoryWorks.  In Time for Kids we read about coding computers and in StoryWorks we read about the Lochness Monster.
   We hope you enjoy exploring our classroom.  Please be sure to sign in using the dry erase markers.  Thanks for coming by!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Wacky Wednesday!

Hello dear followers!  Today is Wednesday, October 29th and boy, has it been wacky!  We made layers of the Earth models this morning.  You'll get to see them tomorrow night at Open House.  Remember Open House is from 6-7 at Mount Leb!  Hope to see you there.
We had an all fourth grade meeting today with Officer Partham. He talked with us about using threatening language and threatening behavior.  He reminded us of the language we should and shouldn't use when working with peers and adults in our school.
Halloween is on Friday.  Mount Leb. will celebrate by having a Halloween masquerade parade at 2 on Friday.  We'll have a lunch party at 12:20 as well.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Funny Feet

One of the loveliest things about being a student at Mount Lebanon School is that you get to be in chorus AND it's part of your academic day!  All students in third and fourth grade get to participate in singing with friends AND they don't have to give up recess to do it!  Mrs. Greenough, our MOST AMAZING music teacher has been working hard putting together her next program.  The students learned a new song today called "Funny Feet."  Guess what!?  There's a dance to go along with this GREAT song.  Here's the link for all of my student followers to help them get their groove on! Funny Feet

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

One More Popsicle

4th graders are TRYING to earn 12 paper popsicles to earn a popsicle party.  Many of the students tried to earn that last popsicle, but didn't.  We're still struggling with raising our hands.  Hopefully, tomorrow will be a popsicle-earning day.
Today we had our first NWEA test.  Some children finished the reading portion and others did not.  Some students found it fun, others found it boring.
During morning meeting we brought back "On This Day in History".  We learned that Henry Ford designed a assembly line to make a car in three minutes flat!
Forward march!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Math Rules!

Ms. Skiffington, a former Mount Lebanon second grade teacher has changed jobs!  Ms. Skiffington now works as a math coach!  Here's a helpful link to her website! Math Rules

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Sometimes You Need a Fresh Start!

You know it's going to be "One of those days" when you go to iron your pants and you discover the hem has come undone.  I should have known it was going to be one of those days.
We started out the morning with bus evacuation which upset our music class.  When we came back we had a big class discussion about our rules and being a 95% 4th grader.  After some refreshers on expectations and some table re-arranging, we were back in the saddle and going off at a full gallop!  So, just like the hem on the pants, anything that comes undone, can be stitched up.
After our complicated morning, we spent time reading the book Eli by Bill Peet and discussing the moral of the story.  We also drew lions that will become part of our next art exhibit.
Our favorite activity of the day, though, was the post-it facts activity.  Students were asked to write one fact about monarchs per post-it note.  Some kids got up to 24 facts!  These facts will later be categorized and used in our writing of our monarch books.  See some of our pictures below:

Monday, September 22, 2014


Our students are SLOWLY, but surely becoming fourth graders.  We've been working hard on following the rules and practicing expected behaviors.

In science today, we watched a You Tube video on the life cycle of a monarch.  Our monarchs unfortunately died so we've had to improvise watching the life cycle.  The students read in an article that the milkweed may have been what made them sick.  Ms. Allen has emailed Monarch Watch to inquire about the recent monarch deaths.  We are also working on our books on the life cycle of the monarch butterfly.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Super Spellers!

It's been a very busy day in fourth grade!  We had our first day of chorus and our first lesson in spelling!
We brainstormed some LONG E words today based on the spelling patterns found in the sentence: She really likes to eat green beans.  Here are a few samples: puppy, east, steal, eat, chewy, etc.
In other news, we have a caterpillar going into its J-SHAPE!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Perfect Painters

We have a class pet!  Actually, we have TWO class pets.  Our class pets are monarch caterpillars.  We're observing the life cycle of a monarch.  To do this, we will be making Picturing Writing books about our little critters.  We started our books with the first stage in the cycle of a butterfly - the egg.  

Storyworks, a literary magazine for kids, has an article on volcanoes.  The kids read a book about Mount Tambora.  It was a volcano that erupted in Indonesia.  The article highlighted the volcano's effects in NEW ENGLAND.  

More to come tomorrow - stay tuned.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Library Lions

Today we went to the library!  Mrs. Stone read us the book Miss Moore Thought Otherwise.  The book was about the first childrens' library. We also got to choose books.  You'll see us bringing home magazines and books this evening.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Super Spellers!

Today, we took a spelling achievement test.  Boy, was that hard!  We had 30 words to spell on our fourth day of school!  Phew!
A big thank you to the DeClerk family for donating a broom, dustpan, and clipboards.  We are very appreciative!
It was BATT day today.  We got to set out the books and choose one too.  You'll see us carry them home here and there.
In Daily 5, we learned about read to someone and how to sit in EEKK style.  Ask your child about EEKK!
Have a fabulous Friday and wonderful weekend! See you Monday.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Thrilling Thursday

Today in class, we wrote in our Quick Write Journals.  We wrote about Finn McCool, the biggest giant in Ireland.  One of our students wrote, "....he likes to hunt with a bow made of the rainbow's curve and arrows he made with pine trees and sharp boulders..."

In math, we had our official ENVISION math lesson. We learned about multiplication and its properties.  Did you know that if you reverse the factors in a multiplication problem, you get the same product?

We created classroom rules!  They are:
Our Classroom Rules, When We Follow the Rules!
Be Respectful

Be Responsible

Be Safe

Be Kind, Courteous, and Considerate

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Day 2 of School

Today, we did two painting projects.  Ms. Allen read us the book The Dot  by Peter H. Reynolds and discussed the idea of "just trying."  We completed our own dots and we will be displaying them on a bulletin board near you!  Our second art project was making a self-portrait.  First, we drew with pencil and then we traced it over with Sharpie.  After that we used watercolor to paint in our details.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

How We Spent Our Summer Vacation

Today, September 2, 2014, we read the book How I Spent My Summer Vacation by Mark Teague.  In class, the students brainstormed activities they did over the summer.  Here are our favorites:

  • Swimming
  • Visiting New York x 2
  • Going to Boston - A RED SOX GAME!!
  • Whale's Tale x 2
  • Hershey Park x 3!
  • Renewing of the Vows 
  • Camping in Maine
  • Riding an Airplane (FIRST TIME!)
  • Six Flags
  • Fisher Cats Game
  • Camping with Family
  • Cheer Leading
  • EATING Ice Cream
  • Costa Rica
  • New Dog
  • Hiking
  • Washington D.C.
  • Wedding
  • Prince Edward Island

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Teaching on Tuesday!

On Tuesday, September 2, 2014, we'll start school at Mount Lebanon!  Over the summer lots of things happened!  We have a new superintendent, a new principal, a new classroom, and a NEW year!
Our classroom space is all set for the 22 fourth graders to learn.  We have a new math program this year too!  We even have new math manipulatives. I have a plan to have a math lesson of exploration with a guided discovery using our new math books and our new manipulatives.   It's going to be a blast!
We also have MONARCH CATERPILLARS!  We'll be raising a few caterpillars and studying their life cycle.  While doing so, we'll write our own books.
I'm hoping we'll have lots of parent volunteers this year!  We're going to need some help with art projects, math games, and field trips!
Well, that's all for now....more to come...hopefully weekly...hopefully by kids...
High hopes for a happy year!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Hello Mr. Zebra!

Today, we read the book, Zella, Zach, and Zodiac by Bill Peet.  We created colorful zebras  using watercolor paper, water colors, and pencil.  Check them out!

Monday, May 19, 2014

It's a RACE to the FINISH LINE!

It's May 19th and it's been over a month since we've last written to inform our followers of all the GREAT things happening in Ms. Allen's grade 4.
Our American Revolution projects are well under way.  Students are working in teams of two to research the biography of a FAMOUS character from the American Revolution.  We're studying Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Benedict Arnold, Abigail Adams and more!  Stay tuned for an invitation to our presentations coming up in June.  Students can get extra credit for dressing as their character on the day of their presentation.
On Friday, we'll head over to Great Brook at Goodwin Park to participate in the 8th Annual Lebanon Student Watershed Congress.  This is an all day event that corresponds with our science curriculum based on environmental stewardship.
After 3/4 of a year piloting two math texts, the district has decided to go with Envision Math.  This was a long process, but with a good outcome.  We'll finish out our year teaching the Math in Focus text and next year, students will be taught from Envision Math.
Speaking of math, we'll be starting the next unit in math.  The topic is Adding and Subtracting Decimals.
Daily 5 has been filled with projects!  We're reading the book Fever 1793 as an independent study.  We're also making trout life cycle mini books.
There are many exciting upcoming events. Here are a few:
5/20  - Kilton Visit
5/21 - Chorus Concert @ LOH
5/23 - Watershed Congress
5/26 - No School - Memorial Day
6/19 - 4th grade step-up day
6/20 - New Principal Sing
6/24 - 4th grade recognition @ 8:15-9:30, 11:30 cookout, 1:00 early release

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Vacation is on its Way!

Happy spring!  Hooray for sun and vacation!  This last week before school break I have been meeting with parents.  It's incredibly rewarding to meet again with families and discuss progress, especially of the progress-making kind!
Report cards will be sent home tomorrow, April 11th.
At one of the conferences I discussed making a report card for me.  What do you think?  What should I be working on? One of the things that was brought up was, "Where do I find information about the Great Stone Face project?" So now, I am posting Great Stone Face information in a convenient place. Here is the link.
Last fall, Mrs. Stone, our school librarian introduced this year's picks.  Students were given a dossier to track their reading and comment on the books as the read.  Voting for GSF books has already happened at school, but the final votes for the state must be turned in by April 14th! We'll soon hear of the winners!  Our school library as well as our Lebanon Libraries also carry many of the books.  If you're looking for a good read on vacation, check 'em out!
Enjoy the's a flurry of fun as we travel through the next few months!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

March Madness

It's March and we're going MAD!  What a busy and long month March can be.  Today, we took a trip to the Kilton Library.  Amber, the children's librarian. read us From Dawn till Dusk by Natalie Kinsey-Warnock.  We've also been reading Roald Dahl books in class.  We just finished Matilda and we're now reading Fantastic Mr. Fox.  We are focusing on improving comprehension, expression in reading, and literary elements.

In math, we've been studying fractions.  Today we learned how to take a mixed number and convert it into an improper fraction.  Khan Academy has been helping us with our lessons.

We're studying weather in science.  Right now, we are learning about thermometers and temperature.   We've also read about weath and made quizzes to test our learning. In addition to weather, our trout eggs have arrived.  They are being housed in Miss Renehan's room.  We'll be observing the eggs later in the week.

We'll be embarking on our medieval unit soon.  Calling all parents!!! We'll need help with food, set up, and take-down for our feast.  Email me if you can help!

Reading Week

It's reading week at Mount Lebanon School. Tomorrow, we have read you t-shirt day and an author visit!  Natalie Kinsey-Warnock will be speaking to our fourth graders at 9:45 tomorrow.  On Thursday, we'll have wacky hair day and on Friday, we'll wear pajamas to school.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Matilda on Monday!

We'll start reading Matilda by Roald Dahl on Monday, February10th.  As part of the unit, students will participate in a book club, answer comprehension questions, and study the vocabulary of the book.  Take a look in the link section of our website to get more information on Roald Dahl and to access the comprehension and vocabulary pages we'll be using.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Cooking with Kids!

This week we started our unit on fractions using Math in Focus (one of the math pilots the district is trying this year).  To introduce the unit, we baked cookies!  We started out our lesson with writing a chocolate chip cookie recipe. Then, we reviewed fractions with measuring cups and measuring spoons. Each student took turns adding various ingredients into bowls and then combining them.  We baked the cookies six at a time in a toaster oven (thanks to my little brother, Aaron).  It worked!  Baking with kids is so much fun!  If you aren't doing it at home, you should! If you are, good for you! If you are a classroom teacher and haven't cooked with your students, what are you waiting for!?  The cookies won't bake themselves!
One last note...a BIG thank you to Jonica for rescuing us!  I forgot flour and she came to the rescue.  Phew!  Take a peek at the pics!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Jumpin' January

It's January and we've jumped right back in to our studies!  The students seemed to have grown over the holiday break and settled into their fourth grade bodies.  All is calm and collected. 
In math we've been studying graphs and data using our math pilot Math in Focus.  This unit has been easy for most of our students as Trailblazers worked on graphs and data in every unit.  The district will be making a decision about the new math program in April.  The choices are between Envision Math and Math in Focus. 
In Daily 5, we've been meeting daily to read various Roald Dahl books in a book club format.  Our students have been bringing in refreshments to share with their fellow readers to eat while they discuss the books.  So far we've read The Twits, George's Marvelous Medicine, and we are working on The Giraffe, The Pelly, and Me.  The kids are certainly enjoying Dahl's humor!
In science, we've been studying electricity.  Using Delta science kits, funded by the PTO, we've learned how to build a simple circuit using a lightbulb, wire, and battery.  Last week, we started learning about series and parallel circuits. 
We got news from New Hampshire Fish and Game last week. Our brook trout will be available for pick up in February.  We'll be raising them to the fry stage and setting them free in Great Brook in early spring.  
In other news, our class has been given money through Adopt-A-Classroom from our local West Lebanon JCPenney store to support material and technology purchases.   Thank you to JcPenney!
Happy New Year!