4th-5th Grade

Classroom News

Week of May 21-25, 2018

Dear Parents,

I hope all Mom’s had a marvelous Mother’s Day yesterday!

Thanks also to all of you who volunteers at Field Day on Friday- what a blast! I am sure you heard all kinds of great stories from such a fun and active day.  I appreciated all the positive energy the kids gave to one another as everyone showed great sportsmanship participating in all the events.

Unbelievably this is now our last full week of 4th and 5th grade!

We have our final test on all the States and Capitals on Friday. Some fun ways to study are:  Make a states and capitals memory game with index cards and turn them over to find the matches. Make a flip over study guide, folding a paper in half and cutting to the fold to cover the answer and quiz yourself. Fill in the large US map I sent home, write the states in and add the capitals. Study the study guide.  We will also play some more games to practice in class and I will also share some good online sites as well.

Please make sure your child turns in his/her 30 Book Challenge which is due on Thursday. Parents please sign off on your child’s overall reading. This is his/her final reading homework grade.

Please keep your eye out for a sign up for the Year End Party and return the permission slip and the $4 for the bus if you have not yet done so.

Thank also for all the special goodies during Teacher Appreciation Week.

I love teaching your children!


P.S.Extra credit math homework for 4th grade. Complete the online Chapter 11 math test to replace your lowest test score. You can practice with the chapter 11 review in your math book as well. There is no other math homework this week. This is due by Friday.

Week of May 7-May 11, 2018

Hello Parents,

Thanks for all the support you gave your children for such wonderful science projects for Science Innovation Day. The students had so much fun sharing all they learned!
With less than three full weeks left we are wrapping everything up. We finished the Civil War and are reading our last chapter about the Westward Expansion in Social studies. This week is the last quiz on the states and capitals, which means next Friday they will be tested on all 50. The next two weeks for science  fifth grade will be learning the Growing and Changing Unit  and fourth grade will continue discussing life cycles and doing some space science with Ms. Gordon.

In math, fifth grade has a math project they are excited to work on and fourth grade is continuing to move through the rest of the Go Math book. Our last fourth grade math homework is the Chapter 9 online quiz due this Friday.

Please send in permission slips for our end of year 4th and 5th Grade Picnic on May 23. Additionally, the 30 Book Challenge packet is due on next Thursday May 17.

Have a wonderful week!


Week of April 30-May 4, 2018

Dear Parents,

I was so impressed with the hard work your children did on Community Service Day.  When you have the opportunity, ask your child to show you the area they cleared in Elk Meadow. The forest will be so much healthier due to their amazing efforts!  I also want to give a huge shout out to Heather Riemma and Valery Brown for their super planning and the background they shared teaching the principles of Leave No Trace and working with the class throughout the day. Additionally, Jamie Brand, also needs a huge “Thank You” for organizing this fantastic event for the whole school.

Homework: Science Projects are due Friday for Science Innovation Day.  

There will be a quiz Friday on the Midwestern and the Great Plains States and capitals, but no spelling test. Also, fourth grade will not have math homework this week to allow for more time to complete their science projects.

Please plan to visit and see all the fun and innovative science projects this Friday. Displays will be set up and  ready to share all day. However, we will have regular math and specials schedules in the morning, then view projects until 11:05. Fourth and Fifth graders will be sharing projects from 11:05- 11:40 and again 12:30-1:15. Thanks for all the support at home to make these projects possible.

Hope to see you all this Friday!


Week of April 23-27

Dear Parents:

Thanks for all the great help with the Carnival on Friday. Everyone had such a wonderful time!

Homework Update: Due to the short week there is no spelling test, but students are to study the southern states and capitals for a quiz on Wednesday.  There is a math test for both grades on Tuesday. So the Chapter Review should be completed and gone over at home tonight.

Please make sure your child’s permission slip is turned in in order to participate in our Community Service Day on Thursday.

It is also Spirit Week in honor of Earth Day and our Community Service Day we had Element  Day today, Tomorrow is Tree Hugger Tuesday (Hippie Day) and Water Wednesday (Hawaiian or wear blue.)

See you all at the Music Performance tomorrow.


Week of April 16. 2018

Dear Parents,

Please note the following important dates and deadlines:

Tuesday April 17: Fifth Grade Parent Meeting for Growing and Changing 5:00 pm

                           (Permission Slip Due ASAP to participate in this science unit)

Thursday April 19 Young Writers’ Conference:Illustrated and Published Mystery Stories due 4/19

Friday April 20: RMAE Carnival

Monday April 23: 3-5th grade Music Performance

Thursday April 26: Community Service Day (Permission slip due ASAP)

Friday April 27: Teacher Inservice Day/ No School for students

Friday May 4 Science Innovation Day ( Projects are to be completed at home for homework.)         

Friday May 11: Field Day

Friday May 18: 30 Book Challenge Due

Wednesday May 23 4/5th grade picnic (more details coming soon)

Thursday May 24 Last Day of School ( 12:00 dismissal)

*Please note that we no longer have Reading Street Spelling homework Students are learning the states and capitals. They have a map and will study them based on their regions. A map and list of the words will be sent home each monday for the next 5 week.

Have a super week!


Week of April 9 2018

Dear Parents,

Congratulations! As of today all 4/5th grade students have completed their CMAS Testing. Way to go!!!

We are therefore, moving back into regular routines and homework as much as schedules will allow for these last couple months. Fourth graders have spelling this week, but 5th graders are excused since they were still testing. Nightly math homework has resumed for 4th grade and 5th grade will start as well. I am no longer collecting Reading Logs, but reading is to be recorded on their 30 Book Challenge Packets. This will be due Friday May 18.  Published mystery books are all due by Thursday April 19. If they are not completed this week, students will need to finish publishing them for homework. Students have worked so hard on these stories and will have the chance to share them at the Mountain Area Young Writers’ Conference on April 19 and also at a special authors’ sharing time with Ms. Gordon’s class.

As summer is approaching,  please help encourage your child to stay focused on the learning and completing both classwork and homework. We still have a lot of great Core Knowledge content to cover intermixed with special activities such as the authors’ visit (4/11), carnival (4/20), 3-5th grade music performance (4/24), Community Service Day (4/26), and  Field Day ( 5/11). *Fifth Grade parents please also make note of the Growing and Changing Parent Meeting ( 4/17)

Thanks for all your support,


P.S. Here is the link for our YAT photos. Enjoy!

Week of April 2, 2018

Dear Parents,

I hope you all enjoyed a Beautiful Spring Break and Easter!

We are jumping right back into our testing schedule:

English Language Arts tests will be Monday -Wednesday.

5th Grade Science: Next Week: Monday-Wednesday

One of the perks of testing is there will be no regular homework again this week.

However, Spelling and Reading Logs will begin again next week.  

In class we are working on publishing student mysteries for the Young Writers’ Conference. After a strong focus on social studies for Young Ameritowne and preparation for Abraham Lincoln’s visit, we will be starting Chemistry in science. Keep watch on the website for photos from Young Ameritowne to be added soon.

Have a wonderful week!


Week of March 12-16

Congratulations, your children are now ¾ the way through fourth and fifth grade! This final quarter is going to fly just like the next two weeks before Spring Break.

CMAS- Colorado State Testing: We are taking time this week to do some short practice tests to get everyone familiar with the format of the test. Good news is...  the CMAS test is very similar to the online Go Math that we have all worked so hard to learn this year. Next week our class will have the opportunity to show off what they have learned in math. Our test time is from 10-11:25 Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. This will also be our schedule the week after Spring Break for English Language Arts. I like to keep testing low key and easy going. One way to do this is to eliminate homework! There will be no regular math, spelling or reading homework during testing. Please have your children get a good night’s sleep and eat a healthy breakfast so they can do their best on the tests.

Young Writers: In order to complete our mystery books for the Young Writers’ Conference on April 19, we are completing our final typed and edited copies this week. There will not be computers available during testing so everyone will need to be ready to illustrate their books next week.

Field Trips:  Pippin is this Wednesday. Please send your child with a hearty snack as we will return later than they are used to for lunch.  Students just learned their jobs for Young Amertiowne and will begin on their job training this week. Additionally, they are all learning how to do the necessary banking which includes checking, debit cards and savings accounts. We are still looking for more parent volunteers to join in all the fun next Wednesday. Also, please make sure your child’s permission slips are turned in. Thank you!

Have a super week,


Week of March 5,  2018

Dear Parents,

Sorry for the delay, but due to high winds our internet was down the first couple days this week.

However,  this didn’t slow us down in the classroom. Students took a skills assessment to help determine the right jobs to consider for Young Ameritowne. Then they read help wanted advertisements, filled out job applications, and wrote cover letters. Interviews are scheduled for Thursday afternoon. Additionally, during social studies time, students wrapped up learning about Westward Expansion and began learning about slavery and the start of the Civil War. This background knowledge will be important for them to really appreciate the special guest coming back from the past to visit all our 4th and 5th graders this Friday. Yes, Abraham Lincoln is coming to RMAE! ( Thank you PTO for funding the time machine that is transporting our guest!)

*Parents, please remember to turn in permission slips for our EHS Musical next Wednesday and we are still in need of many parent volunteers for our Young Ameritowne trip on the 21st. We need a parent to help run each shop the day of the trip. This is a special day you and your child will never forget!

*This Friday is the last day of the third quarter and the last chance for students to turn in any missing assignments.

Thanks for your support,


Week of February 19, 2018

Dear Parents,

It was great sharing all the wonderful progress students are making at conferences with you all last week. I’d also like to send a special “Thank you!” to all the parents who helped make the 4/5th grade Valentine Party a hit! What a fun party. So many students said this was one of the best parties ever! Additionally, I hope everyone enjoyed the four day Presidents’ Holiday Weekend. With another short week this week we will not have Spelling Homework. This is a good week to focus on math and any other catch-up work your child may have. (Fourth Grade has their Chapter 6 Fraction Equivalence and Comparison math test on Thursday. Parents please check in with your child and see if he/she needs any additional support while completing the online review this Thursday.)

Friday’s Field Trip: Please make sure to pack a lunch for your child. We will provide snacks and will have our cold lunches when we return from our field trip to the Colorado Environmental Film Festival. There is not a place there to have lunch. If your child has pre paid for hot lunch the school will provide a sack lunch for your child.

Week of 2-12-2018

Dear Parents,

I am looking forward to meeting with you at conferences this week. If you have not signed up please see the link on the schools website. I still have available times on Thursday.

With Valentine’s parties tomorrow,  noon dismissal Thursday, and no school Friday or next Monday, there is no spelling homework this week. Additionally, Reading Logs will be optional/extra credit next week. Enjoy the February Break and Happy Valentines!


Week of February 5, 2018

Dear Parents,

Last week a School Messenger email was sent out with a field trip permission slip. I wanted to clarify some missing information on that slip. This is a special field trip that fourth and fifth grade were invited to based on our connections as a Project Learning Tree School. This trip is to the Colorado Environmental Film Festival at the American Mountaineering Center in Golden on February 23. They do not have an indoor lunch area so students will need a good hearty breakfast and we will provide snacks on the bus. Students will need a sack lunch to eat on our return. This is a free event and the $5 fee will cover the bus and snacks. Space is limited so we will not be able to take additional chaperones. Thanks to many of you who have already printed off and returned the permission slip.

Typing Homework: Mr. Dunbar has challenged our 4th and 5th graders to improve their typing and begin practicing 50 minutes each week. Here are the details:

Good morning,

I have gotten 4th and 5th set up with accounts.

-The website we will be using this year is It can be accessed from anywhere, including the chromeb

-I will be checking in weekly (maybe till spring break or so) to see how the students are doing. I have asked all of them to spend 50 minutes total per week on typing. On my weekly check ins during Tech, I will do my best to see if there are any home row issues.

-Lastly, I let students know that if there is down time after math class or extra time in homeroom, they may use the chromebooks here to get their homework done. I also mentioned that they may get all 50 minutes total done in one shot- it doesn't need to be 5 different sessions.

Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you for you help with this.

Additionally, Ms. Gordon and I would like to challenge all our math students (5th graders too) to practice basic math facts 10 minutes each night if they are not yet proficient at addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Practice with flashcards, go online, or play fun games like multiplication or addition war.

Finally, please keep watch for a Sign- Up Genius for conferences next week Tuesday February 13 and Thursday February 15.

Thanks for your support and have a wonderful week!


Week of January 29, 2018

Dear Parents,

As the culminating activity on our study of cells, 4th and 5th grades will be having our “CELL-A-BRATION”  tomorrow. Each student needs to bring in their edible model of either a plant or animal cell. Please remind your child to remember to label the parts of the cell to show what they learned in this unit. Additionally, as we “cell-a-brate” our class will be performing their Sherlock Holmes Reader’s Theater skits. I combined these two activities so parents could also join in all the fun. Please join all our excitement which will begin right after lunch recess form 12:20-1:15.

I’d also like to congratulate our classroom Spelling Bee participants: Brody, Duffy, Ella, Ellie, Atticus, and Bethany. I was so proud of everyone’s interest to participate, but we were only allowed six per class. The RMAE Spelling Bee is this Friday at 8:30.

Fourth grade parents, please note:  there is an opportunity for fourth grade students to correct their Chapter 5 math test and retake the online test at home this week to raise their grade. I will record the highest score in the gradebook. Please check in with your child to see how he/she did on this last test. Multiples and factors are so important to understand as we are now beginning fractions.

Hope to see many of you at these fun events this week in school and don’t forgot “Sleddin Maggedon” this Saturday. I will be there with our own Vickery creation!


P.S. I’ve included the Cell-a-bration flier if you need to refer to it for last minute details.


Tuesday, January 30th

As the culminating activity on our study of cells, 4th and 5th grades will be having a “CELL-A-BRATION.” Each student needs to bring an edible model of either a plant or animal cell.  

  • Last names between A and J - bring a “plant” cell (healthy/vegetables/fruits/pasta/etc.)

  • Last names between K and Z - bring an “animal” cell (dessert/cake/etc.)

Cell parts need to be included and labeled:

Plant Animal

  • Cell Wall   - Cell Membrane

  • Cell Membrane   - Nucleus

  • Nucleus   - Cytoplasm

  • Cytoplasm   - Mitochondrion

  • Mitochondrion   - Vacuoles

  • Choroplast   - Genes/Chromosomes

  • Vacuoles   - Golgi Body

  • Ribosomes   - Ribosomes

  • Golgi Body   - Lysosome


Image result for healthy edible plant cell

Week of January 22- 26
Dear Parents,

Wow, last week I really noticed a lot of improvements in classworks and homework. I believe students are working hard to accomplish the academic New Year’s Resolutions they wrote the week prior. Keep up the great work class!

This week’s core saying is “Count Your Blessings.” I would like to say thank you for my 20 “Blessings” I count daily. It is so much fun coming to work each day and getting to share all the great Core Knowledge curriculum with my students. This class especially is always so full of energy and ready to soak up all I have in store for them. They have been fascinated by our science unit on Cells which we will wrap up today. Take a look at their notebook, which will come home soon, to review what I remember learning in high school biology! We’re also moving quickly through our Explorer’s Unit so we can get to Westward Expansion and the many other interesting history events we have to study this year.

Have a Terrific Week!


Week of January 15-19

Dear Parents,

I hope everyone enjoyed the Martin Luther King Holiday. It’s a four day week, but it is a full week of learning. Reading logs were due today. I have notice a lot of great reading being done at home. Snowy cold winter days like yesterday is the perfect time to curl up with a good book. I wish I had a reading log required for myself!

Online math homework: fifth grade has got this down!  There are so many benefits to this option. My favorite is the instant feedback and background information if the problem is wrong. Fourth grade is correcting their Mid Chapter 5 Checkpoint from last week on paper and then trying the online quiz at home this evening. Please go over this with your child. It’s a great chance to see your child's understanding of the chapter so far and see how Go Math is teaching it so you can help out for the second half of the chapter.

Students are finishing up our first Sherlock Holmes mystery and will start their second. They are enjoying the Literature Circle process where they are responsible for searching for clues,  important characters, new words, the mystery then share in their group when they complete the reading. We will also start  planning our own mysteries in writing.

I hope your child has shared some fun things they have learned about plant and animal cell in science. Ask you child what started the Age of Exploration. You may be surprised!

Have a great week and stay warm!

Week of January 8-12, 2018 Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a Wonderful Winter Break! I want to thank all of you for so many fun individual gifts and the very generous class gift. I had a fun shopping spree at REI and stopped for lunch at Qdoba with my kids. Yum!  

We are starting the second half of fourth and fifth grade with some fun new units. While reading Sherlock Holmes we will discuss what makes a mystery and even try writing one. I am also hoping to have the students perform one of the Sherlock Holmes mysteries they read in their literature circle groups. For social studies we are starting to learn about the Age of Exploration and in science we will begin our unit on Cells.

Students are also writing New Year Resolutions in class this week. They will choose an academic, behavior, and personal goal for 2018. This is always a motivating way to start back to school after break. Please help remind your child to start off the new year on the right foot and encourage him/her to complete nightly math homework, spelling packets and reading 100 minutes a week and record it on reading logs which are due on Mondays.

Thanks again for all your support at home. 2018 is going to be great!


*P.S.We have been asked to post our newsletters on our new RMAE webpage. Please make sure to check the site each week.. Thank you!

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