Saturday, December 6, 2008

I Got a Tree!

Look at the newest addition to my tiny apartment.  Today Laura and I went out to get a tree to celebrate the holidays.  The problem is that we live in a small apartment so we had to get a small tree. Luckily the CCY had just the right sized Noble Fir.  We ended up with this great four footer.  We just finished decorating it.  Doesn't it look nice?

How does your family celebrate the holidays?  Tell us of any unique customs or traditions that your family does to make the holiday memories last.

Yes, those are my lovely socks...

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Forgot your book at school? No problem!

Did you know that you can find your child's Science and Social Science Textbooks online?
It is easy and can even save your child the trouble of lugging around heavy books.

For science just click this link:

Just click on the book cover for fourth grade. This will lead you to all sorts of activities to help your child learn more about their current science lessons.
In order to view the actual textbook just click on this link and enter the login info found below:
Username: casci04
Password: redwood

For Social Science it is just as easy.
Click on this link:

Simply click on the " For Students" tab (on the left side) and enter our class code: Owen2007

You will get a list of the textbooks in grade order. Just click on fourth grade.

Both of these sites have games and extra resources to help your children expand there knowledge in the sciences. How great is it to live in this day and age where your child's books can be found on your computer. My back still hurts from carrying all of my books around as a youth.

Please comment to this post and let us know how this resource has been helpful for your family.

Get AR information at home!

Become a more informed parent.

Now you can view your child's academic progress online (via the Accelerated Reader Program).

It's called Home Connect:
Home Connect builds a bridge between school and home and keeps parents informed of their child's progress toward Accelerated Reader goals. This useful information will not only keep you up to date on AR points as well as books your child is reading, it will also motivate them to read even more!

I encourage you to visit the website and view your child's information. It is totally awesome!

Just copy and paste this link into your browser and you are good to go:

or click HERE

You will need to enter your child's ID# and password. If you have misplaced the information just email me and I will send it to you.

Please post comments of how this program has improved reading at your home. We would love to hear your stories.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

New writing resources hit home!

By now you have received your copy of the Tuesday Night Writing Parent Handbook. Students are also now using their Tuesday Night Writing folders. This is a sign that our writing program is in full swing in the fourth grade.

We are very excited to have the Parent Handbook this year that can be used at home for many purposes. Be sure to look inside to find a multitude of checklists and rubrics which help you understand what fourth grade writing should look and sound like. Not only will this resource be helpful for Tuesday Night Writing assignments but also for any writing that is being done at home.

Remember that Tuesday Night writing is assigned every Tuesday evening. These assignments might involve prewriting, drafting, publishing, or even a whole writing process to be done in one evening. Assignments will usually be related to our current science or social science instruction. It is not our goal to bog down our students with these assignments but to expand our writing instruction by bringing it into the home. Here are some tips and guidelines for having great TNW assignments:

- Write all final drafts in your best cursive (No typing please)
- Work must be completed by the student
- Parents assist by helping student to understand the writing assignment
- Email, post a comment, or call early if there is a question about an assignment
- Remove distractions in the home when writing is being done
- Don't wait until the last minute to do your writing
- Homework passes cannot be used on TNW
- Have fun with it. Writing is a very enjoyable exercises.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

I Met Huell Howser

On Sunday I got to meet one of my many childhood heros, Huell Howser. That's right Huell Howser. Are you more surprised that I met him or that he is my childhood hero? Huell Howser is best known for his T.V. show on PBS, "California's Gold." I used to watch this show every weekend. One of the reasons why I love California history is because of this great program.
Huell has been just about everywhere in California interviewing people about anything he can think of. I am pretty sure that there isn't a place I have been in California that he has not done a show on, or at least it seems that way. His travels inspire me and make me want to go to all of the same places.

I got to meet this man because he was speaking in Irvine and my wife's parents got tickets for us all to go. In his speech he talked about his life and how he ended up in California doing a show about California. He was very funny and had a great outlook on life. I was honored to get the chance to speak to him and shake his hand.

Have you ever met someone famous who you admire for their accomplishments? Post a comment and tell us about it.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Back to School Night

Thank you so much for coming to Back to School Night.  I enjoyed meeting all of you.  I would like to introduce you to my new Blog site.  Please add this site to your favorites so you can stay up-to-date on all of our important class info.  

Feel free to post any questions that may not have been answered tonight.


I look forward to partnering with all of you.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Welcome to the Fourth Grade

This year is going to be a great year for all of our fourth grade students. Fourth grade is a grade of many changes. Now that you are in upper elementary you have:
- Bigger classes
- PE Teachers
- More computer lab time
- More school (you get out later)
- Orchestra (If you want to join)
- And more fun (Just kidding, all grades are fun)
We have so many great plans for you this year and can't wait to get started. I know that all of you are excited to get into your classroom, find out where you are sitting, and see who is in your class. Just know that we have two awesome fourth grade classes at Valley View and we are all going to have an amazing year in the fourth grade. Just remember...Writing Gives Us Wings to S.O.A.R.