Dear Families,
Another cool, crisp week we’ve had.  Students are dressed warmly and cozily which is great so when they’re outside for recess their sole focus is on playing and having fun with their peers!  Thanks for ensuring your child has the proper winter gear so they're toasty :)

Speech Prep:
Students are actively and enthusiastically working on their speeches during class, lunch & learn opportunities (offered daily 1:00 - 1:20 p.m.), and even homework club (offered daily from  1:20 - 1:40 p.m.).  It's wonderful being part of their excitement in this writing task.  I have spent quality time with some students offering them feedback to help them improve their ideas and organization. It's going really well!

Yesterday, I did a mini-lesson on "Speech Tips" to help in presenting information effectively.  Check out the tips below and encourage your child to utilize these as they continue to work on this assignment.  Practice delivering your speech at home boys and girls!

Yesterday, I also invited Sydney from Mrs. Shaw's class to come in and deliver her speech so my students could learn from her as well.  She offered some amazing strategies and ones that everyone can specifically relate to.  I sat back and took it all in; I was a student too!  Thank you Syd for taking the time and efforts to help and inspire us to do the best we can!  I could tell your younger peers admire and look up to you!

Our new unit in science focuses on STRONG and STABLE STRUCTURES.  Some of the expectations we will be focusing on are:

·         Define a structure as a supporting framework with a definite size, shape, purpose
·         Identify structures in the natural environment and built environment
·         Identify the stability of a structure as its ability to maintain balance and stay fixed
·         Identify properties of materials that need to be considered when building structures

This week to introduce these concepts, we went outdoors and used materials in our environment to build some of our own structures.  Check us out below!  The students got quite creative and had a blast building in the snow because they were inspired by a non-fiction text I shared with them prior to heading outside!

During this unit, we will be doing lots of building and testing out the stability of the structures made.  It'll be fun!  If your child wishes to bring in materials such as paper towel/toilet paper rolls, kleenex boxes, straws, small to medium sized cardboard boxes etc ...feel free to send these items in with them.

Custodian Appreciation Day:
On Wednesday, it was Custodian Appreciation Day!  Here at Nottawa, we are very lucky to have two very hard working custodians who take the time to ensure our school is clean every day.  I have shared with my students from the very beginning that custodian appreciation day is not one day, it is every day!  In our class, we ensure that we do our part by cleaning up after ourselves and always respecting their efforts.  Mr. Sheffer and Mrs. Engel do their best to go above and beyond not only in their line of work, but their interactions and connections with our students is wonderful as well.  Thank you for all that you do, you make our school community a bright and shiny ONE!

Field Trip Reminders:
Next week, we have two different field trips to attend!  YAHOO :)  Our class will be going to the bowling alley on Wed. and our grade 4's will be going to Highlands Nordic on Tues., YAY!  I remember as a kid how excited I used to get for field trips, and I know my students share in my enthusiasm!  It's a great opportunity to engage in FUN new learning outside of school with other peers from different classes.  

Parents, thank you for your online payments.  I know it can get expensive with everything you provide for your child. Please know, I really appreciate your support in providing this experience for them!

This week, our focus has been on telling time to five minute intervals as well as telling the elapsed time of real-life events.  For example, I have been posing problems such as the following: “The time is now 10:15am, how many minutes until lunch if it begins at 10:40am?”  Students area also expected to tell time in a variety of ways.  If it is 8:50am, they may also say: It is 50 minutes after 8 or It is 10 minutes to 9.”  Talking about time in real-life situations is very meaningful as they can then relate it to their life and understand why it is so important to be able to tell time.  Thanks for your support!

When we do math workstations, students access their mathletics account in class to work on math problems for extra practice on concepts I'm teaching.  It is a very useful tool to help build their confidence in math as well.

Just a friendly reminder to please have your child access the site over the weekends to complete the course work that I've assigned.  We are very lucky that our school has paid for this meaningful program!  To the students and families who regularly utilize this program, I know who you are and I appreciate it!  It is making a difference :) Click the link below.
Great Canadian Mail Race:
I’d like to share some exciting news with you!  On Tuesday, I received in my mailbox a handwritten letter from another grade 3 student from Cottingham Public School in Toronto.  I was immediately intrigued.  Turns out, a student from Cottingham chose our school at random to participate in what’s called “The Great Canadian Mail Race.”  The purpose of this initiative is to promote letter writing and expose students to other areas in Canada and learn about it.

Now it’s our turn!  Here’s the task.  I would like each child to pick a school in Canada, find their address, and begin writing a letter to a student from that school.  When letters are completed, I will mail them off.  The race is on!  The first student in our classroom to receive a reply is the winner!

In class, I have been modelling parts of a friendly letter so they do have understanding of this writing form.  I will provide class time as well, but if your child wishes, he or she may also take initiative to work on this at home using lined paper or their google docs.  Have fun with this assignment!  Remember when we used to receive letters in the mail?!  I used to get so excited!!   

Nate will be travelling to South Africa with his family beginning next week and in his absence, we will certainly miss him and think about him a lot.  Good news though, he has decided to write his own blog so we can keep up with his travels through his words and photographs, isn't this GREAT!?  I think so!  If you wish to follow him see the handy link below!  Thanks Nate for doing this, we are excited to be part of your travels!  Stay safe and we look forward to checking out your first post!  
100th Day of School:
Thank you Grace for bringing in a special treat to help us celebrate being at school for 100 days!
Mrs. McTaggart and I thought it was next week (Feb. 15th)!  We appreciate Mrs. Kutcy counting the specific days and being accurate.  If these 100 days are a reflection of what the next 100 will be, well, we're in for a real treat!  Thank you for making each and everyday memorable and special.  I love being your teacher boys and girls!!!

Thanks Grace for the yummy chocolate kisses!
Growth Mindset:
Students are eager to share their own growth mindset quotes with me which is fantastic and warms my heart!  We have already been doing this for quite some time, but if your child has a quote that he or she would like to share, don't hesitate to have them write it down, bring it back to school, and we can then post it in our classroom for everyone to benefit from!  I think you all can sense by now, I'm a huge fan of inspirational sayings ...yes, they are words, but if we can put these positive words into our actions we can make this planet even better than it already is!  Thank you to Aurora for sharing the quote below and check out Faith's shirt - powerful words!!  I love it :)

“Just remember, you be YOU because everybody else is taken. You’re perfect just the way you are!”  - Aurora

Miss Gill


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