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November News 2019

 Greetings from the Principal


 “You need to memorize your math facts!”  As adults, we can all remember hearing that command in school.  The educational logic at the time stated that, in order to perform more complex mathematical functions, students needed to have almost instant recall of their basic math facts for all four operations.  A great amount of instructional time was devoted to this work, often at the expense of having students explore more relevant problem-solving situations.  

Our school is now lucky enough to have a dedicated Math Coach, Mrs. Robin Bowerman.  During my first conversation with her this year, we discussed this topic.  While drilling math facts as part of homework may not be an inherently bad practice, I still wondered how much time and, more importantly, what methodology would best increase student learning in school?  In general, research points to the most effective path for improving student math fact fluency lies in developing their number sense. 

Students with a strong number sense can manipulate numbers in their heads to more efficiently solve problems.  For example, a 2nd grade student attempting to solve 21 + 18 might instead visualize the problem as 21 + 20 = 41 and then 41 - 2 = 39.  By rounding the 18 up to 20, they create an easier sum to deal with mentally that can then be readjusted using simple subtraction.  This kind of thinking will build over the years and, if guided correctly, open the door to mastery of algebra.  


Mrs. Bowerman shared a wonderful article on this subject with our staff.  It can be found at:   https://www.youcubed.org/evidence/fluency-without-fear/  or by searching for “Fluency Without Fear.”  I hope you take the time to read it, especially the great suggestions for working with children at home.  We will be doing a lot of work on this topic this year and I am excited to see the results!  Most of all, I hope that you will help us establish a message about mathematics that is positive and gives each student the confidence they need to progress through this crucial subject.                                        

Attendance

Consistent attendance to school is important for student achievement.  While we realize there are times your child    will be absent from school we ask that you limit unnecessary absences.  It would be ideal if students missed no more than 5 days each year.  We also ask that you call the safe arrival line by 9:15 a.m. (508-563-2334 x4) to report all absences and tardies.  Finally, if your child is absent for a medical appointment or prolonged illness please provide us with a doctor’s note.  Thank you for your help.

 

Ice Cream is available for purchase on Tuesday. Ice cream cannot be charged. Your child either needs to bring in $1.00 on Tuesdays or have money available on their lunch account. 

On half days of school ice cream will not be sold on Tuesday.  It will be sold on Thursday of that week.

Please have the conversation with your child on Tuesday morning about whether they can buy ice cream, and if there is money on their account, or in their lunch box.  I kindly ask that you send any questions or concerns about Ice Cream to our kitchen manager, Sandra Licciardi.  Her email address is slicciardi@falmouth.k12.ma.us

 

Helping others during the Holiday Season!  

Canned Food Drive

Mr. Cross’ class will be leading our Canned Food Drive this year.  We are asking members of our community to bring in one or more non-perishable food items starting November 4 through November 22.  This food drive will support those in need in our local community.  Donations can be dropped off in our school lobby.  Please note food must be packaged in original boxes or wrapping, and we are not able to accept any baked goods or homemade foods.

This year we would like to collect 300 items!  As part of our ongoing community efforts, we will be counting and organizing the collected goods for delivery to the Falmouth Service Center and to local families in need. 

Our North Falmouth community has been so generous in the past; we are sure we can definitely reach our goal!  Once again, we will announce in the December newsletter our total amount of goods and, as always, THANK YOU in advance for your generosity as we enter this holiday season.

Toys for Tots - Beginning on December 2 we will be starting our annual Toys for Tots drive.  This drive will run until December 18.  We will be collecting new, unwrapped toys and books for this U.S. Marine Corps Reserve sponsored program.  Containers will be in the main lobby for the donations.  THANK YOU in advance for helping to support the children and families in our community.  

 

AROUND THE SCHOOL

The PTO Reach Out & Read will run from 11/4-11/15. The American Education Week will run from 11/12-11/15 and The PTO Book Fair will take place the week of November 18-22 from 10:00-3:00 and on Wednesday, 11/20 they will stay open until 5:30-8:00 p.m. for families to come and enjoy.

 

Important Note: If there is a delayed opening, there will be NO YMCA.  If there is an early release, there will be NO PM YMCA.  If you need to have your child attend YMCA and they are registered, and you have forgotten to give them a note in the morning, please call Claudia @ 774-251-5148.

 

Counselor’s Corner

Greetings!  PeaceBuilders continues to be a major focus for the school.  The principles of Praising Others, Giving Up Put-Downs, Seeking Wise People, Righting Wrongs, and Helping Others are consistently discussed and followed by the school staff as well as the students.  We are proud to be an official PeaceBuilders school!

 I continue to meet with groups on a daily basis.  This is a wonderful way for the students to share, connect, and learn from their peers.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions, suggestions, or concerns.  I can be reached at 508-563-2334 ext. 7310 and/or aleblanc@falmouth.k12.ma.us

Have a wonderful month & Thanksgiving holiday! Ms. Angela LeBlanc, School Adjustment Counselor

 

All Kid’s Craft Show                                   

The All Kids¹ Craft Show is on Wednesday, December 11 from 1:30-3:00 & 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Shoppers will enjoy a variety of items at reasonable prices. The participants will have a chance to learn about business first hand. Each third and fourth grade crafter will have the opportunity to decide on a craft or crafts to produce, to purchase raw materials, to make products, to set up an attractive display, and to sell what they make.  Not only will they be able to make some money for themselves and shop, but they may also choose to donate some money to a charity.  Information about the Craft Fair will be sent out throughout the month. 

Nurses Notes

Here are a few reminders -

  1. Don’t forget to check with your child’s doctor about this year’s flu shot.
  2. Sneakers, sneakers, sneakers!  Please be sure your child is wearing appropriate footwear to school.  Sneakers are required for PE and should be worn to school every day.  Remember, recess is every day.  Fancy shoes, shoes with heels, cowboy boots and flip flops may be fun to wear, but are not the safest choice for running on uneven ground and jumping/climbing on playground equipment.  Sneakers give better support and stability for growing feet and ankles.  
  1. There is no denying the importance of breakfast. It is one of the simplest and most overlooked ways to make sure your child starts each day ready to learn.
  1. The fluoride rinse program will be starting shortly.  The flavor is bubble gum this year.