Upcoming Field Trip

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I can’t believe that our year is quickly coming to a close. I wanted to let you know about our end of the year field trip on May 29th. We will begin our adventure at Pigeon Creek Park and end with lunch at Tunnel Park. We typically leave school at approximately 9:00 and parent chaperones will need to drive separately. A note will be coming home in the next week.

Writer’s Workshop Homework

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We started our unit on poetry. The kids are doing an amazing job thus far! We have been observing what poets do and what poets write about. Please bring in a small object that you can observe and write about. You could choose something because it is beautiful, makes you wonder, or amazes you. You could have a story about it or memory. It could even be something as simple as your favorite pair of mittens.

Michigan History Quiz Tomorrow

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Your child brought home a review sheet for the quiz tomorrow. I have included the questions below just in case it was forgotten at school.

1.  What was the main reason the French explorers came to the Great Lakes region? They were trying to sail to China to get silk and spices.

2.  Why did the Indians agree to trade with the French? The Native Americans wanted things the French had (knives, pots, hatchets, guns).

3.  Who else came to Michigan besides the French fur traders? A French missionary (Father Marquette) came to teach the Native Americans about God.

4.  Why were the French interested in trading for beaver furs? The French wanted the beaver furs to make hats because the beaver was scarce in France.

5.  When did the fur trade in Michigan begin? The fur trade began about 400 years ago.

Remember these events in order:

1st: Europeans were looking for a way to travel west to China.

2nd: Explorers discovered that North and South America were blocking the way west.

3rd: The French were looking for a waterway through North America.

4th: The French discovered North America had beavers and other fur animals.

5th: The fur trade began between the French and the Native Americans.

Gym Shoes

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Our wonderful gym teachers have made a special request.

The weather is turning and kids are wearing shoes outside. If they wear those shoes to gym, we get lots of dirt in the gym which makes our floor very slippery. Please make sure that your child has a clean pair of gym shoes in their lockers.   Thanks so much!


Social Studies

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We are currently focusing on two social studies units. Mrs. Flory is talking about the history of Michigan with the students and in my class we are talking about public issues in Michigan, our responsibilities of citizens, and Core Democratic Values. There will be a test on Core Democratic Values next Friday, April 25th. For extra review, please click on the picture below for flashcards:


What are Public Issues?

  • Issues are things that people disagree about.
  • Public issues are issues that affect a large group of people such as school, community, or state.
  • Many times people disagree about how to settle, or resolve public issues.

Why do people disagree on public issues?

  • People have different points of view about public issues.
  • To understand an issue, you need to look at different points of view.
  • Disagreements about public issues are related to core democratic values.
  • Core democratic values are things people believe in that bring people together as Americans.
  • Some examples of core democratic values are freedom, fairness, and the common good.

Exploring a Public Issue Facing Michigan Citizens

  • One problem facing Michigan is our growing use of energy.
  • It is important to develop new sources of renewable energy to supply our energy needs.
  • Wind farms are a good source of clean, renewable energy.
  • Winds are often the strongest off the shorelines of the Great Lakes.
  • People disagree over whether or not to allow wind farms in the Great Lakes.

Evaluating Possible Resolutions of Public Issue Facing Michigan Citizens

  • People have different viewpoints about how to solve or settle a public issue.
  • Understand an issue, citizens need to look at different viewpoints about the issue.
  • Understand an issue, citizens also need to think about how core democratic values are connected to the issue.
  • When citizens understand an issue, they can make better decisions about how to solve the issue.

Writing & Social Studies

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A pink homework paper came home today. Our current opinion writing unit also covers concepts in social studies (Core Democratic Values & Michigan Public Issues). Your child will need to find an article that pertains to a Michigan Public Issue. Once they find an article, they are to read the article with you and pull out the opinions shared by others concerning this issue. Also, I would like them to get your opinion on this issue, as well as, one other adult not living in your home.  This assignment must be returned by: Tuesday, April 22.

Once all the facts and opinions are gathered, your child will be writing an opinion paper based on their  public issue question.. Some ideas are: recycle laws, killing of the swans and snow owls, year round school, school uniforms or issue of their choice.

Upcoming Science Unit & Homework

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Our upcoming unit in science will involve taking a closer look at sand & soil. Spring break is the perfect time to locate sand and soil especially if you are going on vacation. We would LOVE samples for all over the U.S. Your child is bringing home a note that is further explaining this, along with 2 small bags for samples. If you are going away, just make sure to pack it in your suitcase. If you are remaining in the area, there are great samples to be found here. Thanks for helping your child add to our science study of sand and soil.



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The students did an AMAZING job! You will have a chance to see their presentations during our Just Write Celebration on Tuesday, May 13th from 2:30-3:15. That being said, I will keep the posters at school until that day and then you can take them home. If your child had a costume, I would love for the them to wear it on Monday, as well as, Tuesday because the 4th & 5th graders will be touring the halls.