December’s Virtue is Kindness


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Latkes: order forms went home on Friday. Student Council makes these yummy potato and onion pancakes to celebrate Hanukkah. They are due on Wednesday, and latkes are a $1 each. They can be paid for and ordered using Schools Cash Online as well. We will be eating them on Friday, December 22.

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Skating in the New Year: Trip forms went home for 3 skating opportunities in January, February and March.  There is a total cost of $5 for all three visits to Harry Howell Arena. Thanks to Parent Council for covering the cost of the buses!  Students must have trip forms returned to me by Thursday, December 22 and payment can also be made using Schools Cash Online.  Please note that students must have their own skates as well as a CCSA approved skating helmet and mittens or gloves in order to participate on each day. Parents with the completed Vulnerable Sector (police check) can volunteer to help with laces and skating: please return the slip with the trip form for your child.

Algebra and Order of Operations: students were asked to show you and have you sign their last two checks/quizzes last Monday. Many students stayed in for part of Friday morning’s break to send or leave a message so that they would remember to bring them in on Monday. On one, students highlighted what their own goals were. The second shows improvement in some of those areas. Please remind your child to show them to you and bring them in, if you haven’t already! Thanks.

This week:


  • Ugly Christmas Sweater Day
  • We will be baking, I hope!
  • Area and Perimeter of rectangles and squares
  • Science Fiction Stories and dramatized scenes
  • Introducing: Random Acts of Kindness: we will draw names, and try to secretly be extra kind and helpful- on Thursday we’ll reveal the names, and see if we guessed who it was!


  • Dances due, presented to Ms. Marion
  • All Health skits etc should be presented or recorded for me, duotangs handed in
  • Icing of cookies if all goes well!
  • Area and Perimeter of rectangles and squares


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  • Holiday Assembly- period 1 and 2
  • Wall-E: we’ll watch this great example of science fiction and discuss the messages the creators want us to think about, and how that relates to our lives today
  • Candy grams on sale
  • Latke orders due


  • Holiday Assembly- period 1 and 2
  • Candy grams on sale
  • Winter Dance period 5 and 6- please bring a nonperishable food item for the Flamborough Food Bank 
  • Gift exchange– for those that want to participate.  All gifts should be something students have at home, that they don’t want or use any more, but may be of value to someone else. They can be great, or funny, or awful! They need to be wrapped (even in newspaper, or plastic bag) so that others can’t see what it is.  We’ll draw names, and choose a present to open. Some steals will be allowed! The goal is not to buy a present, but bring a present from home.

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  • Latkes!
  • Pajama Day!
  • Student vs Teacher Volleyball- volleyball teams face off against the teachers period 3 and 4
  • Elf: movie in the gym period 5 and 6Students can bring blankets and pillows for the movie.
  • Candy grams delivered

December 23- January 7: Winter Break- enjoy the holiday!

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See you in the new year: back to school January 8. 

December’s Virtue is Kindness.

Important Information and Dates:

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Toy Drive- on now until Tuesday, December 12.  Please consider donating a new, unwrapped toy. Thank you for donations received already!

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Subs and Pita orders beginning in January are due by Wednesday, December 13.

Theatre trip-Joseph and His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat: Wednesday December 13.  Students attending the trip and students staying at school will learn details about the day on Tuesday. Students attending will have a chance to eat before leaving, and when they return.  Students will not have an opportunity to buy items at the theatre.


Please check out Greenleaf”s December newsletter if you haven’t already:

Please check this blog’s calendar for holiday events. I will discuss with students some of our plans for the week before the holidays.

Class work:

Homework Task due Thursday, December 14. Students can borrow a book containing the story, “Little Green Men.” There is a worksheet to help students identify characteristics of science fiction narratives. Most students chose to borrow the book one night before homework is due, rather than receive photocopies of the story. Colour pages and pictures make reading more interesting, and save the paper from photocopying! Books are due back the next school day, but can be signed out again.

Students will have two math quizzes to show you next week. One features order of operations, word problems requiring order of operations, and writing algebra expressions. Students will have highlighted goals for future work. There is no overall mark. The second one is the check they wrote Friday, after a review of order of operations. We will continue to work on word problems and communicating thinking and calculations. We also unfinished quizzes, despite extra time provided, shows a need for more confidence with the concepts and material to be able to complete quizzes purposefully in time provided.

Flag/ invasive species posters: one should be done, and students should have taken one home to finish. The other will come home this coming week if not done. While students record their health skit/ rap/ news report, others will have opportunities to finish. Little class time will be provided this week, after several periods for work over the last two weeks.

Math: We will be connecting algebra and order of operations to area and perimeter formulas for rectangles and squares. We have practised multiplying and dividing by multiples of 10 (e.g 100, 1000) and will use to convert linear and square measurements.

Science/Language: researching and writing a report about an issue or problem relating to biodiversity (e.g.: loss of habitat, invasive species, threatened species, effect of natural or accidental disasters on the ecosystem)

Language:  Science fiction novels should be finished by Wednesday and returned to school. We will be plotting the stories events, and identifying and comparing the scientific characteristics of the novels read. I hear some students have enjoyed reading this genre, and discovered some new series to read! Fantastic!



December’s Virtue is Kindness.

Homework this week:  Due Thursday- students have chosen a four page text passage from one of two of the science fiction books students are reading.  This task is an opportunity to practise concepts we’ve been discussing in class (identifying adverbs and descriptive /”triple scoop” words, asking questions, making predictions, making connections to other texts they may have seen or read, and identifying some elements of science fiction narratives).

Math Check: postponed to Monday– word problems that require students to write an expression that will involve more than one operation, and solving the problem and the expression, and writing algebraic expressions and equations, when written in words, then solving for the unknown value.


Media tasks: students will have time this week to complete their flag and poster about invasive species, which will both be due by the end of the week.

Math: algebra, writing expressions and equations, and solving for the variable.

Science: students will choose an area of interest or issue that demonstrates biodiversity, the importance of it, threats to biodiversity, or situations where biodiversity has been disrupted. Students will research about their issue, then draft a report about it to present to me and a small group, or to the class.

Language: students should be finished their second science fiction novel by December 13.  In class, we will explore some additional texts, and plan parts of science fiction stories.

Health/ Dance: students will start Dance on Thursday, and will need gym clothes until Christmas holidays.

Notes home this week:

You can still send in responses about a parent night, and topics you might be interested in, which students received last week.

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Students also received a note on Friday about Greenleaf’s Annual Toy Drive. If you would like to participate, please send in to our class an unwrapped, new toy or gift for someone your child’s age beginning Monday, until December 12.

November’s Virtue is Self Discipline.


We have been focusing on self discipline in the classroom and in work times, and relating it to responsibility, diligence and purposefulness. For the most part, our class shows greater self discipline related to work. This week as a class, and then in smaller groups, we focused on self discipline in less structured times, like lunch and at breaks outside.  The biggest takeway for parents to know about is we talked about appropriate language during games outside, avoiding swearing, name calling, put downs and “smack talk” as the kids called it.  Some of that and needling others about what happened outside has continued inside.  We have problem solved, discussed, and made very clear to students in 6A and 6B that if everyone wants to play sports on the field, it needs to be a positive game, where students practise self discipline to abide by the rules of school, the rules they created in problem solving discussions with me, and to show greater kindness and consideration towards the friends they are playing with.  Students know that progressive discipline requires that if we can not resolve these issues but they continue, they will be referred to the office.  We have also had some language and actions in class that are not appropriate, and we have discussed these in small groups as well. I have encouraged the students to continue to call out actions and language that are inappropriate, negative and unkind.

We have talked about bullying this week as well. The plans and drafts of flags that students brought in were thoughtful and had a lot of important messages.  We conferenced about them in small groups, and students received feedback from me and their friends.  They will work on them this week, and also continue to work on their posters about invasive species.

This is one of my favourite quotes.  Next week, we will discuss how we can be the change in our class- what can we do to show a commitment to improve the culture in our class, playground, community? When students show an understanding of bullying, but also indicate there is bullying in our class, what can we commit to do to help change that? We will discuss this challenge next week, and I will ask the students how we can represent our commitment to ourselves and others.

Homework: I didn’t assign any homework this week. We have a lot on the go! Many students were away on Friday, and they will have the opportunity to catch up on the missed math quiz and other work on Monday and through out the week. Eventually if work remains unfinished, students can stay in or take home if appropriate to complete.

PA DAY: Friday, December 1

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November’s Virtue is Self Discipline.

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Picture Retake Day is Tuesday, for those who want them. Please make sure your child knows if they need to get retakes.

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Science Fiction Novels: Students should be on their second novel now. There was no extra reading task assigned this week: Students who did not finish their work about conflicts in their novel need to finish and hand in. I will be keeping in students to finish at first breaks this week to do so and to provide extra reading time for those who have a lot to read in their novel.  Students who have kept up with their work, using time at home and school to do so have no work to complete, just to keep reading the new novel they chose.

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Homework Task: to plan a flag to raise awareness and communicate a message about bullying prevention. Last week we had an amazing discussion about bullying, what it is, and our own experiences. With closed eyes, many students raised their hands in response to questions about bullying, being a witness, experiencing bullying, and even responded to agreeing bullying happens in our own class. The homework task (due Wednesday, not Thursday!) involves planning a flag that students will have time to create in class. They were given a sheet with success criteria, instructions and ideas.  The flag should communicate messages about bullying on a particular theme to a particular audience (e.g. empowering the person being bullied, reaching out to bystanders, talking directly to bullies).  If students would like to bring in items to use for their flag, they should bring them into school for Wednesday. I will give students a large piece of paper for their flag, but students can also bring in fabric, different pens or markers, and other materials (felt? wool? pompoms? words or images they printed?) to add to create their flag.  I have some art materials (paint, oil and chalk pastels, markers, pencil crayons, as well as some crafty stuff) students can use if they like. We discussed this task as a media text that will communicate messages to an audience, and to think about what media techniques they can use to create an effective text.

Math: We will be having a math quiz on Fridays for whatever work we have learned and practised during the week.  They will be smaller than tests, and hopefully provide students more concrete feedback about their own learning. It is my goal that I will give them an overall level for their work (sometimes focusing on Knowledge and Understanding, Thinking, Communication and/ or Application, sometimes all four areas) and they will write their marks in the agenda for you to see.  Students who are absent on Fridays will complete on Monday or when they return.

Curriculum- this week and next week:

Math: Equations (algebra, variables, substituting), order of operations (BEDMAS), leading into Measurement (area and perimeter).

Science: creating a poster and other media text to communicate to others about invasive species in Ontario, how to identify them, their effect on the ecosystem and what we can do about them.

Language: Continuing with work about Science Fiction, including short stories and videos we explore in class.  Continuing to explore explicit and implied messages in texts, including media texts.

Health: 6A will have health (Healthy Eating) with me, for two weeks, while 6B will have Dance in the gym. 6A will switch to Dance on December 7.

Have a good week! Can you believe it’s mid-November already?

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November’s Virtue is Self Discipline.

I feel this quote relates well to the goals many students have made in class, balancing social activity that might be in the moment, with their own goals for learning, marks and satisfying their own expectations, as well as yours.

Photo orders and Joseph Trip forms were due on Friday.  Please send in the report envelope and the signed section on page 2 of the progress report if you haven’t already.

Homework Task: due Thursday, November 16  I’ve created a Google slide show, which has been shared with all the students.  Instead of bringing in their work, students can share it in a slide.  Students know how to access their HWDSB Google Drive, and use the “shared with me”option.  They do this using the same logins they would use at school. A link to the sign in page is here: .

Students are asked to find an image that they think communicates a theme or message about Remembrance Day.  In class, we discussed the task and  looked at the slides I’ve set up with instructions.  In an effort to save a bit of paper, I wrote the instructions in the slide show instead of a sheet in their agenda.  Students are to find an image that someone else hasn’t used already, briefly describe it, discuss what are the explicit ideas (clearly stated) and implied ideas (a bit of reasoning required) in the image, and explain why they think this image is a good contribution to the slide show. In class, we made a list on one of the slides of ideas we might explore (e..g courage, soldiers, war memorials, etc). Students should add their names to the slide as well! We will look at these in class on Thursday.  While I reminded students to only add ideas or edit their own work, and that I can see from a history who has been editing etc, we also discussed it might be a good idea to save their image and ideas in their own Google doc or slide..

We will explore a couple of images and discuss implied and explicit ideas in our media lesson in the next week to provide more examples.


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Science Fiction Novels: Students should now be reading the third and final section of the book they chose. They have some work to do about conflict- identifying different kinds of conflicts in their story.  Students can bring home the green duotangs that contain their work, or complete it in school during the reading time they get each day.  Students will need to read at home as well as school to finish their section.  They can exchange books next week. Students who read more than two science fiction novels are welcome to choose more to read from the novel sets I have, or some individual copies or sequels I’ve put out as well.

Math: We will be finishing work about multiples, divisibility, and beginning order of operations and equations over the next two weeks.

Pens, pencils etc: Many students do not seem to have writing utensils for class.   At a bare minimum, students will need pencils, erasers, blue or black pens, a coloured pen for marking and editing, and a highlighter.  Students are encouraged to keep their items in a pencil case (or even a labelled ziplock bag) to keep their items secure and prevent them from disappearing or being left behind.  Please make sure your child has these items for class, as well as a few extras if needed. 

Lastly- I have had some questions about this blog’s emails and subscriptions.  I would appreciate it if you are able to let me know with a quick note (agenda is fine) if you received the email with the link to this week’s post, or if your child could tell me you received it. I sent it out Friday morning, according to the settings, you should get an email telling you about a new post on Friday morning as well. Thank you! I appreciate your help while I try to trouble shoot some problems!


Upcoming Theatre Trip: Joseph and His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat on December 13.  The trip is open to grades 5-8, with a limited number of tickets available. Trip forms and payments are due back by Friday, November 10, or sooner to secure a spot. Students not attending will have regular school activities planned for them. Parents wishing to attend with students will need to purchase a ticket as well as have a police check.

Pens, pencils etc: Many students do not seem to have writing utensils for class.  I have put out some extra pens and pencils, but those were depleted the first week of school!  At a bare minimum, students will need pencils, erasers, blue or black pens, a coloured pen for marking and editing, and a highlighter.  Students are encouraged to keep their items in a pencil case (or even a labelled ziplock bag) to keep their items secure and prevent them from disappearing or being left behind.  Please make sure your child has these items for class, as well as a few extras if needed. 

November’s virtue is self-discipline.


Progress Reports:  I appreciate your time to discuss your child’s progress, if you came for an interview Thursday or Friday.  Please remember to send in your envelope and the signed portion of page 2.

Reading assessment summary: I will be conferencing with your child about strengths and goals for reading for the rest of the term, based on this reading assessment that students completed in early October. I plan to send home a summary of a winter/ January reading assessment with the Term 1 report card.

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Pictures went home last week.  Please check the due date on the photos, and be aware you can order online or send in orders. Picture Retake Day is Nov 21.

Remembrance Day: There will be an assembly Friday at  10:00. Parents are welcome. Students will be given a poppy to wear; please feel welcome to send in change to donate to Veterans’ families.

Important Dates: 

Science Fiction Novels: Section 2 is due Wednesday.  Duotang work from last week is due Tuesday. Students can complete their work in class reading time, or at home. The goal to read at least two novels in 6 weeks.  Students can plan to read at school 20 mins most days, at home a minimum 15 mins most nights or longer to finish the section of the book they chose.  We will look at different science fiction short stories and videos this week, discussing characteristics of science fiction narratives, and the theme of the text . This is the message the author wants to think about, and how it applies to the world today.

Homework Task Due Thursday: Students were given an articles about a school’s decisions about Hallowe’en costumes.  They should read and highlight the article, write a summary (see instruction sheet for success criteria) and complete a chart considering different points of view about this issue. We will use this work in class on Thursday.

Math:  We will have a math test on Friday about factors, composite numbers, and prime numbers, as well as multiples and divisibility rules which we will learn and practise this week.

Language: Sci fiction novels and other texts, writing summaries, creating media texts for younger audiences.

Science: Investigating biodiversity, the effect of invasive species and issues showing the importance of biodiversity

October’s Virtue is Honesty.

Progress Reports

  • Progress Reports go home on Monday.  Please book a time to discuss your child’s progress report with me using the online booking system. I stapled a note in agendas on Tuesday, and you can find directions and links in last week’s post or the school’s eblast.
  • Please also find in the report cards a summary of reading results from a recent reading assessment.
  • Please return the signed portion of the report and the envelope as soon as you can, or at interviews.

Hallowe’en Activities

  • Parent Council is running a Hallowe’en “Fun-Raiser.”  Please send in any donations you may still have. All students will receive ballots for an i-tunes gift card; students with donations will receive extra ballots.  Grades 6-8 will have a dance on Tuesday, period 5-6. Students are encouraged to wear school appropriate costumes, and prizes will be awarded for costumes (see last week’s post for more specifics).
  • Our class will carve a pumpkin on Monday to be used for dance decoration. I’ve asked students to bring in simple designs we can consider carving.
  • Candygrams are on sale on Monday for 50 cents, and delivered on Tuesday.
  • We will have some Hallowe’en themed learning activities this week as well.
  • Hallowe’en For Hunger- 6A has brought in 32 items so far for the food bank. Please continue to send in any food donations for the Flamborough Food Bank Monday and Tuesday this week.

Trips: Thanks to parents who have returned the slips letting me know about your availability to accompany 6A on class trips. Please send yours in if you haven’t already.

Homework Task: due Thursday, November 2

The class enjoyed sharing last week’s homework with each other, reading the descriptive paragraphs they wrote, and seeing if the drawings by others matched the picture they brought in.  Students have a small sheet stapled in agendas detailing this week’s assignment: to use one of the pictures I’ve provided to write two or three descriptive paragraphs based on what they have observed in the picture.  I showed students in class where to find them; they can google this blog, and select the Pictures tab at the top of this page to choose one of fifteen pictures to write about. We will use this writing in class on Thursday.

Science Fiction Novels: students chose a book to read this week. They have divided their books into 3 sections. The first section is due on Wednesday, and there will be related work to complete on Wednesday.  Students will read a minimum of two of the science fiction books, but can read more.  Students are given about 20 minutes to read in class most afternoons, and we’ve discussed reading a minimum of 15 minutes at home most nights, which seems a manageable chunk of time for reluctant readers.  This should allow students to easily read two or more books.  Students are also encouraged to read or finish other work if they have the opportunity in class when other assigned tasks are done.

It seems Fall has finally arrived- have a good weekend!


A letter will go home today about booking a meeting with me after Progress Reports. Progress Reports go home on Monday, October 30, and meetings will be held Thursday night and Friday morning of the PA Day.

The site will be available Wednesday morning to book your appointment. Please see the following instructions, which will also be on the note you receive today.

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Booking your Parent Teacher Conference – Thursday Nov. 2 and Friday Nov.3

1. Go to our school appointments web site:

2. Register for an account by clicking the “REGISTER” menu tab and filling in the on-line form. Choose a user id and password for yourself and then click the “Register Now” button.

3. Add your children into the system by clicking the “Add a Student” button. Click “Insert New” button to add more children.

4. Click the “date” icon beside each child’s name to schedule appointments. Select the staff you wish to

book appointments with and the “View Calendars” button. Use the “Ctrl” or “Command” key to select multiple staff to view at the same time.

5. Click on available time slots to book your appointments and then click the “Book Appointments” button to save your bookings.

6. Booking @ : opens Wednesday, October 25th, and closes at noon on Thursday November 2nd. Please make sure that you book before this time.