Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Camp Bluebonnet Scholarships

Mrs. Fournier is excited to announce that we will have our 6th Camp Bluebonnet on June 13-16 at Great Oaks Elementary.  You can register online through RRISD's Community Education department!  We've already filled up 15 of the 30 available spots, so register quickly if you're interested and going to be a 3rd-5th grader next year!

Mrs. Fournier, with the generous assistance of Ms. Jacobs, our principal, is offering 2 scholarships worth $99 to attend Camp Bluebonnet this summer!

To apply for the scholarship, please submit a persuasive essay on why you should be one of the two people chosen to attend camp on scholarships. Eligible students must be in 3rd-5th grades next year. Essays may be handwritten or typed but can only be on the front side of one page. Essays are due 4/1 in the library by 3:00.  Students that win scholarships must be able to provide transportation to and from Great Oaks Elementary at 9:00 AM and 12 PM on 6/13-6/16. 

Monday, March 28, 2016

2016-2017 Armadillo Readers Choice List Revealed

Mrs. Young & I presented two of next year's books on the Armadillo Readers' Choice Award list at our librarians' meeting yesterday. We are both on the Armadillo Readers' Choice Award committee and read over 80 books to decide on 10 final nominees. Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade students are read the 10 books throughout the year when the content of the book aligns with their curriculum. We think next year's list is full of fun books with lots of great learning activities and opportunities!

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Ukulele Club Rocking Out!

Ukulele Club has been such an eye-opening experience!  I started private lessons on my ukulele back in November so that I could get a head start, but since we started a few weeks ago, the students in Ukulele Club are rapidly closing the gap!  They learn chords and progressions so quickly, and their transitions are quickly approaching perfect!  It is very obvious that they are dedicated to practicing at home.  We are learning different songs and deciding what we should play at the Talent Show on 5/27 at DeerPark Middle School. 

Check out yesterday's tweet to watch the video of our students playing Bob Marley's "Three Little Birds" yesterday. I got really excited because @roundrockisd retweeted it, which always makes my day!

See you on 5/27 at the talent show!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

First Grade Book Club Finishes Frecklejuice

First grade finished reading Freckle Juice yesterday, a classic that totally stands the test of time!

To celebrate finishing the book, and because we're silly (just being honest!), the club decided to make our own freckles.  We made them blue just like Andrew does, but instead of a marker, we made them from paper and taped them on our faces so we could remove them after photos!

We loved the silly premise of this book, how the teacher turned out to be nicer than she seemed in the beginning, and how gross the recipe for making Freckle Juice was- no wonder it gave Andrew a stomachache!

Freckle Juice is the 6th book we've read so far this year!  Way to go, Book Club!

Monday, March 21, 2016

3rd Grade Alphabetizing

One of 3rd grade's Texas Essential Knowledge & Skills (TEKS, we call them) is to be able to alphabetize words to the third letter.  We practiced with an old fashioned competition in the library today!  Students practiced alphabetizing in groups, getting acquainted with what to do when words have the same beginning letter/s, and what to do when one word is just plain shorter than others!

4th Grade Writing Olympics Opening Ceremonies

What an exciting morning- I got to participate again this year in the Writing Olympics Opening Ceremonies! Check out their shirts! I was so excited to help kick things off for students as they focus intensely on their writing this week. I'll be in their rooms in the next few mornings as they draft, revise, edit and publish pieces, helping them out and cheering them on. I can't wait!

Friday, March 11, 2016

Forest North Places 5th at Battle of the Bluebonnets

Way to go, Elizabeth, Zachary, Ceil, Michael & Neeharika!  You got 35 out of 40 questions right.  That earned us 5th place among 31 schools- wow!  You guys did great.  Thanks for all your hard work.

Special thanks to the Round Rock Express for so graciously hosting us at their amazing facility, for their cool t-shirts that match the logo they made us (top left of the top photo!) and special thanks also to Bryan Mays at KVUE for emceeing the competition again and doing such a great job. He gave us a shout out on the morning news too, which is always exciting. Congratulations to the Caraway Owls for being the first team to ever win two years in a row. I'm so impressed!

4th graders will be starting a Head Start Bluebonnet Book Club this week during lunch so we can get started on next year.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

RRISD Battle of the Bluebonnets Tomorrow at Dell Diamond

We've been studying nonstop and are almost ready for the RRISD Battle of the Bluebonnets tomorrow at the United Heritage Center at the Dell Diamond. We can't wait for Brian Mays, our KVUE morning news anchor and Battle Emcee, to announce what place we earned! We've been using visualization, re-reading, mnemonic devices, teamwork, divide and conquer strategies, compromise, and old fashioned rote memorization to help us along our journey. I heard a rumor last night that the Round Rock Express team is giving prize packs to the top three teams who finish in 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.  We're hoping to bring the Battle of the Bluebonnets trophy back to Forest North- we won back in 2013. Fingers crossed and best of luck, readers. You are very well-prepared and will represent Forest North well at the Battle tomorrow!

First Grade Book Club Reads "Frecklejuice"

First Grade book club has been my most well-read group this year.  We have zoomed through so many texts! They also are very diverse readers.  We rank our books 1-5 after each book, and they love realistic fiction, scary books (Bunnicula is Clara's jam!), graphic novels, and historical stories. 

Our most recent book is "Frecklejuice" by Judy Bloom (an oldie but a goodie!)  We did the math yesterday when we noticed that our character paid 5 dimes for a recipe for freckle juice.  Turns out it's $0.50!

3rd Grade Multiplication Bee

Yesterday 3rd grade had a multiplication bee in the library!  Each student is paired up with another, and the fastest one to answer a fact gets to move on to the next round.  It's a fun way to practice that's way more interesting than worksheets.  We will do more bees later this year, but in yesterday's bee, Kanishk was the winner! He clearly has been practicing his facts, because he knew the answers so quickly and stayed cool under pressure.  

Congratulations & way to go, Kanishk.  You must be so proud of yourself!

2nd Graders Chosen for Friendship Book Club

Mrs. Peyton, our counselor, and I love collaborating on book clubs together!  We take a book and talk about our feelings and dive deep into the text.  We started a new one yesterday with some amazing 2nd grade readers.  They each took turns reading aloud the first few chapters yesterday and I was bowled over by how much fluency and voice they already have developed when they read aloud. It's going to be a really fun group!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

4th Grade Brushes Up On Handwriting

Believe it or not, students do not get a ton of time to practice handwriting these days. Cursive is, sadly, hard to cram in with all the other material we have to cover with kids. We got back to basics this week with 4th graders and reviewed our capital and lowercase letters, because we want to make sure that all the wonderful things they write (the transitions, the smoothly logical arguments, the detailed progressions, the thoughtful opinions and facts) are getting across to their readers! 

We practiced with the D'Nealian alphabet, tried our hand at a few sentences, and most importantly, practiced our own names.  We checked out grips, made sure we weren't wearing our hands out by pushing down too hard, and we learned that you can turn the page whatever way works best for you.  We took a break every few letters to not cramp our hand. Hopefully these tips make a difference in our handwriting!

Monday, March 7, 2016

Last Meeting of K-2 Comic Book Club

Our students were super excited for our last meeting of Comic Book Club because we promised them a special guest who now worked at Forest North, but was previously employed in the comic book industry. It was our Office Specialist, Mrs. Rape!

She talked to them about her experiences in the comics industry as an inker, right when comics were going digital. We asked her tons of questions. She can look at a color and tell you what percentage of basic colors are its components. Ask her about it- it's fascinating!

We ended our session by watching an awesome motion comic, and students got to take home a free comic donated by our sponsor, Titan Moon Comics. A few lucky students also got to take home a poster, also from Titan Moon. Please support them with all of your comic needs- they have been so generous with our students!