page contents

OUR 2009-2010  FOCUS CONCEPT 
??????????????????????

 Who?      What?     Where?
   
 





GOT QUESTIONS?
 
During the 2009-2010 school year , PACE students will focus less on answers, and more on questions: essential questions, big questions, organizing questions, scientific questions...
 
Quote Corner
Judge of a man by his questions
rather than by his answers.
          -Voltaire (1694-1778)
 
 It is better to know some of the
questions than all of the answers.
              - James Thurber (1894-1961)
 

 


 

 

June 2010
 
 
Summer starts on the 21st and school will soon be out... 
It's been a wonderful year, full of more QUESTIONS, than answers:
EXACTLY WHAT WE WANTED!
 
...and so we end the 2009-2010 school year.
 
I am very sad to say "Good-bye" to so many of "my" PACE students, but wish them luck and learning in their new schools.
 
A huge "THANK YOU," to all of the parents, staff and friends who have supported the enrichment and G/T programs this year.  Enjoy the summer!
 
FYI: PACE Students who will be at CMCE next year are expected to keep a writing journal this summer. 
 
END-OF-YEAR WRAP-UP 
 
Kindergarten- What a great time we had learning about weather, clouds and the water cycle! Students put on THE GREAT WATER SHOW for their classmates during a special, combined library period.  Lots of fun!
  
First grade finished-up their GAME UNIT with a tournament of checkers.  
 
Second grade- Tree projects are completed and will be featured on the school's nature trail.  Each student created a power point slide about an assigned/selected tree found on our trail.
 
Matthew- HONEY LOCUST
Trey - SWAMP MAPLE
George - RED CEDAR
Madeline -OSAGE ORANGE
 
 
Third grade - We just received the long-awaited SECRET EXCHANGE BOX (well...it's an envelope) from another school in New Jersey on Friday, June 18th.  Our detective work must be fast if we hope to figure-out where the other school is before Thursday!   
 
CRABBY! CRABBY! CRABBY!
That's us!  Students listed over 20 questions to use as guidelines for research about: 
FIDDLER CRABS
SPIDER CRABS
GHOST CRABS
BLUE CRABS
MOLE CRABS and
HORSESHOE CRABS 
The completed power points slides are very nice !  Since the fiddler crab is our nature trail mascot, this slide will be featured as a poster on our nature trail.  Well done, third graders!
 
 
 Fourth grade - We are hurrying to finish two, giant bulletin boards and an original brochure (first ever!!!) for the Cape Island Creek Nature Trail.  Unfortunately, we were never able to get the painting done that we were hoping to do, but 4th graders have MADE A DIFFERENCE with their wonderful projects to improve our school's trail.  Sidney and Erin have designed the bulletin boards in such a way to incorporate projects by 2nd and 3rd graders.  Austin & Ricky will have a brochure that tells students and other visitors all about the nature trail and various species (invasives and natives) that are on our trail.
 
AWESOME JOB, 4th graders!
 
We received our ARTIFACT EXCHANGE BOX from an out-of-state school.  They really liked what we sent them!  Everyone is looking forward to "figuring out" where and who this mystery school is!
 
Fifth & Sixth grade - This group just completed an international project called, VOICES FROM THE LAND.  It is a combination of Social Studies, Art, Poetry, and Photography.  The  hardcover book holding the poetry, prose and photographs from this group is completed and will be available for sale from Snapfish.  Beautiful!
 
    
   

 Where-ever you are this summer: home, beach, nature trail, grandmother's, traveling...
  
REMEMBER TO QUESTION, QUESTION, QUESTION!  

  
 
APRIL 2010
A great month for CELEBRATING EARTH!
Weather, Trails, Gardens, Bugs, Poetry...
 
We are continuing with current units of study with many classes meeting outside - Please make sure that your child dresses  ready for outdoors adventures: sneakers or other appropriate outdoor shoes (NOT flipflops, sandals, high heels), socks, pants (if your child is wearing shorts or a skirt/dress, maybe he/she could have an extra pair of pants/jeans at school to change into...?)  !!!Also, I cannot share suntan lotion or bug repellent.  These protections should be applied at home.  Many environmental educators suggest that bug repellents be applied to clothing, not to bare skin.
 
Kindergarten - Weather & tools of the trade: using thermometers, rain guages & anemometers.
First - Games: Rules, strategies & good sportsmanship. So far we've learned about: Batik, Apples to Apples, Blokus, Safari, Steal the Bacon, What Time is it Mr. Fox, & Tag variations.
Second - Trail work and Exploration
Third - Artifact Box Exchange - sharing clues about Cape May County and our town/school with another class IN NEW JERSEY.
Fourth - Artifact Box Exchange -sharing clues about our state, county, and town/school with another class NOT in New Jersey.
Fifth & Sixth - "Voices from the Land," an international project incorporating art in nature, photography, poetry, publishing, and performance.
 
 I hope you had the chance to see the wonderful science projects at our SCIENCE EXPO!
Despite having to postpone it from Thursday, the gym/cafeteria was filled with over 100 projects and an enthusiastic audience.   
CONGRATULATIONS to all students who participated!  We hope that you had fun and learned something new about using the scientific process as well as about your chosen topic. 
 


 
December

This week, students will be tapping their creative thinking
to contribute to our "I'm Dreaming of..." wall.  Fifth/sixth graders are also learning about handheld GPS units and the international sport/game of GEOCACHING.  They will be creating their own caches and sending a school dolphin, with an attached travel bug, off to see the world!
 
 
After the winter break we will focus on the Scientific Process.
All students at CMCE will be invited to participate in a Science Fair/Expo.  PACE students will be required to participate.  Watch for the announcement and information our first week back.  (and don't think about this over the holiday break!)
Wishing you a wonderful winter break! 
 NOVEMBER
In the PACE room students are busy...
5th/6th 
... completing final projects in response to Chasing Vermeer (Why was the Vermeer painting stolen?  What do blue M & M's and pentominoes have to do with this mystery?  Will Calder and Petra solve more mysteries?  If so, will Calder still have pentominoes?) and The Phantom Tollbooth (Why did the tollbooth appear?  What place was the most interesting to visit?  Will Rhyme and Reason be able to keep the brothers from fighting again?)  Project deadline and presentation party will be Tuesday, November 10th at 11:00 AM.  Dressing-up as a character, bringing a food or drink to represent part of one of the stories, and acting a favorite scene are fun options.  If you'd like to join us for this celebration of literature, please do.  It's guaranteed to be a little bit of serious and a lot of fun!
 
 
 
 
     
 
  4th
...using observed properties and written descriptions to identify twelve rocks.  Continuing reading about Brendan Buckley.  Has he really discovered his grandfather?  Why doesn't his mother talk to her father?  How can he find out more?  and why does he like writing down questions in his journal?
 
3rd
...getting to know the loveable and quirky character, Ida B., as she deals with the constraints of school and the seriousness of her mothers' illness.  Have we had any friends or family who had to deal with cancer treatments?  How do we feel about this?  How can we help? Where does Ida B. like to go when she needs advice?  Just like Ida B., we will be visiting our trees (on the trail and in our schoolyards) for words of wisdom and general conversation.  :-)
 
2nd
...listing characteristics of animal groups: fur, scales, cold-blooded, warm-blooded, egg-laying, and more.  Next session students begin individual research about their self-selected animal.  I wonder why 3 out of 5 students chose "DOLPHINS" for their animal project?
 
1st
...having a MONSTER of a time with our new stuffed friends, a selection of books and some story telling.  This week we finished reading SHREK and used a VENN DIAGRAM to compare and contrast the book, (SHREK), with the movie.  What was the same?  What was different?

                 

 
 
 
 
 
 
OCTOBER 2009
October 19th -
GATEWAY   
5th/6th grade: Self-selected book groups are finishing novels, Chasing Vermeer and The Phantom Tollbooth. (Both HIGHLY recommended!)  Tuesday (20th) students will be starting projects chosen from a menu of options.  Each student must select an appetizer, entree, and dessert.
Coming-up:  Technologically advanced Flat Stanley...Literary submissions to Creative Kids, magazine.....Science Fair.
 
4th grade: We are starting novel, Brendan Buckley's Universe and Everything in It.  In conjunction with this, we are conducting a study of Rocks and Minerals.  What kind of rock is this?  Why does it have shiny speckles?  How can this be a rock?...it's too light!  Isn't this glass?  Keep
those scientific questions coming!
 
PACE PALS
3rd grade: Last week, we started chapter book, Ida B.  I had thought this would be the "perfect" book for this fiesty group of girls, but some of them are finding the vocabulary and depth a bit confusing.  We will try another chapter or two and decide whether they want to switch to another book or continue... stay tuned.    This week's assignment of "questions you would ask Ida B. to find out about her" will help everyone describe this unique character.
 
2nd grade: During an Interest Survey, students chose "animals" as their top interest, and more specifically, ocean animals. As budding scientists, they  are starting with characteristics of animals. These are being used to categorize/classify them.  Does the animal have feathers, fur, scales?  Is it an egg-laying animal?  What about the number of legs?  What does vertebrate and invertebrate mean?
 
1st grade:  Finally!  This group has been waiting and waiting to get started!  With a number of absences this fall, it seemed to take "forever" to get through the 3-part SAGES-2 testing, but it's done and the eligibility matrices are complete.  All letters of eligibility and non-eligibility will be sent home by Tuesday, October 20.  Thank you, parents/guardians for your patience.
    This week students will be starting a unit on MONSTERS (mostly the friendly type).  From monsters in literature (one favorite is Where the Wild Things Are --- go see the movie!), and monsters in nature, to monsters in our PACE room (a group of soft, colorful fiends and friends), this unit will facilitate creative thinking, story-telling, science and mathematics.
 

 
October 16th - This fall's evaluation process for nominated students is complete.  Expect to see letters pertaining to eligibility coming home by October 20th.  Ms. Sandmeye-Bryan must have a permission form from each eligible student (whether tested this year, or continuing), who will be participating in PACE PALS (1-3) or GATEWAY (4-6) this year.