Current Classroom News/Events/Links/Info


We are all looking forward to meeting with you!  Please note that the front office doors WILL BE LOCKED AFTER 3:45!  For those of you who have later times, we have arranged to have DOOR #20 open for you!  This is the north side door that leads into our hallway from the BUS parking lot.  Parking is between our building and the Middle School.  

Social Studies & Science Update

We are culminating our U.S. Regions Unit this week with a project.  The kids are really engaged in a variety of activities to showcase their knowledge of a chosen region.  Some students are creating a collaborative Google slides project, some are creating amusement parks with characteristics of a U.S. region, some are creating news shows, and others are making amazing, creative personification drawings that make a U.S. region into a person.  I’m so pleased with the quality of work I am seeing and the teamwork.  We will finish projects on Monday and present on Tuesday.  This is an in class project, but hopefully your child has been telling you all about it.

This past Monday, we took time to remember the tragic event that happened on September 11, 2001.  I told the kids that this is one of those life events that most people remember exactly where they were and what they were doing when it happened.  We talked about the event itself, discussed why it happened, and most importantly how people came together and helped each other.  As for the why, I explained, there is no good reason, but insanity and messed up thinking.  We watched a Brainpop video that did a wonderful job of explaining about terrorism and how terrorists groups have an agenda that they want to push on others and choose violence to get their message across.  I stressed that most people in the world are good people and we can’t let fear take over our lives.  We mostly focused on the people who help us everyday to make our world safe – police officers, fire-fighters, emergency medical technicians, and military were prominently mentioned and appreciated.  The students wrote letters to people in these lines of work and I plan to deliver them.  I want to extend a personal thank you to any of our parents who work in fields where you provide safety, medical help, protection, and care during times of crisis.

In science, we will be starting a unit on the solar system next week.  We will learn about the scale and components of the solar system, and how the movements of the earth, sun, and moon causes shadows, moon phases, night and day, and seasons.  We will use our science text books and do some hands-on activities to aid in comprehension and engagement in the topic.

Carmel Symphony Orchestra Field Trip

We have an exciting field trip to the Carmel Symphony Orchestra on November 15th at the Carmel Palladium.  This field trip will be absolutely free!  It’s an amazing experience for the children to go to the Palladium.  It’s so fancy!  Also the conductor is skilled at making this a very kid-friendly experience.  They will learn about the instrument groups and be enriched by listening to classical and contemporary music and hopefully be inspired to learn more about orchestral instruments!

Students will leave WIS at 9:45AM and should return at approximately 12:00PM.  Our class will be able to eat lunch at our normal time (when we return from the field trip).

There is NO cost to attend this field trip.  Because of the limited space available to us, we are not able to take parent chaperones with us on this field trip.  Thank you for understanding!

Please return your child’s permission slip for this field trip if you have not already done so.

Help Us Help Houston!

Families – 

Your students may have told you about our service project, “Help Us Help Houston.” Learning about Hurricanes Harvey and Irma made us want to help in some way, but the task seemed very overwhelming.  However, we’ve found a way to do something small which will make a BIG impact.
Lizzie Smith is a longtime friend of Mrs. Stella, who is a 6th grade teacher here at WIS.  Lizzie is a 2nd grade teacher at Kolter Elementary in Houston.  Her school was under 5 feet of water and suffered extensive damage.  
Lizzie and her fellow teachers lost everything…books, supplies, things they have collected over the years to make their classrooms fun and friendly learning environments…it’s all gone.  
The surrounding homes (where Kolter students live) were flooded to over 7 feet in some places. These families are dealing with their own losses in addition to the losses at their elementary.
We’ve decided to step in and adopt Lizzie’s classroom and Kolter Elementary. We’re collecting funds during the student lunch times to purchase classroom items and donate to the Kolter PTO.  
If you would like to donate directly, you can purchase items off of Lizzie’s Amazon wish list:
We are also collecting items of need for all who have been affected by Harvey and Irma.  These supplies can be brought directly to WIS and will be sent south through a national food bank organization.  Below you will find a list of supplies that have been requested.

What items are needed?

Household Products/Food

Diapers (sizes 4, 5, 6)

Boxed pasta

Toilet paper



Canned meat



Bar soap

Peanut butter


Canned fruit


Fruit juice

Laundry detergent

Dried beans

Feminine hygiene products

Boxed potatoes

Canned pasta meals

Word Study Information and Practice Ideas

We have just begun Words Their Way, which is our “Word Study” program in 5th grade.  Students are grouped based on the initial placement test that we took at the start of the school year.  The Words Their Way program teaches students the spelling patterns and roots that will help them with their spelling and ability to dissect words to help with understanding of their meanings.  Students are given their word list on Monday and the quiz is always on the next Wednesday, so they are given a week and half to prepare. Students are responsible for knowing the patterns, how to spell the words on their lists, the vocabulary, easily confused words, and/or prefixes/suffixes.  Spending 10-15 minutes each night preparing for this will help them be successful on the quizzes.  Students are expected to keep their word lists in their accordion files.  I have attached a list of ideas for practice/study at home:

_____  1)  Write 24 words in ABC order.

_____  2)  Write 10 words and use a line to divide each word into its syllables. 

_____  3)  Make a set of flash cards to study with.  Part of Speech and Definition

_____  4)  Write a poem, including at minimum 5 spelling words 

_____  5)  Write a synonym for 10 words.  

_____  6)  Write an antonym for 10 words.  

_____  7)  Create a photo gallery or picture collage of at least 7 spelling words.  Drawing

_____  8)  Create  one compound sentence and one complex sentence using 5 words in each sentence 

_____  9)  Cut out letters from a magazine to build 15 words.  Glue your words onto a piece of paper. 

_____  10) Sort all words by parts of speech: noun, verb, adjective, etc. 

_____  11) Write a  tongue twister sentence for 5 of your spelling words.  (All words will start with the same letter.  Example:  Pink pigs play the  piano.) 

_____  12) Write 10 words in a secret code.  Remember to include the key for your code!

_____  13) Write 10 spelling words in pencil and then use two or three different colored crayons to trace over the words. 

_____  14) Type 10 words three times each under sort heading on the computer and print it out 

_____  15) Make a list of all your spelling words on a word  search program and print it out. Try: (

_____  16) Have someone write 10 words but they must mix up the letters in each word.  Write the correct word next to the scrambled word.

_____  17) Create a spelling quiz using 15 words. 

_____  18)  Draw a picture for 10 words. 

_____  19)  Write a definition for 10 words.  

_____  20)  Write a story or song using at least 10 of your words. 

_____  21)  Come up with your own fun way to practice your spelling words! 

_____  22)  Write 10 words with fancy letters. 

_____  23)  Ladder Words – Write 10 spelling words as below: 
                  Example: bag

_____24) Sort according to your headings 

_____25) Sort according to affixes  example: prefix/suffix 

_____26) Add prefixes or suffixes or both to 8 words 

Preparing for math tests

There are several ways to prepare for a math test.  To begin, students have a study guide for the tests.  The study guide should be in each student’s accordion file.  We often take notes over the lessons.  These should also be in accordion files.  The instruction book is also helpful.  As we go over the lesson, students take notes in this book.  Go to the current lesson, and look over the pages for each lesson.  I hope this helps.  Mr. Haywood

Our Daily Schedule Has Changed!

We have made a few adjustments in our schedule for the school year, so this is slightly different than what we gave you at Parent Night.  Please see the new schedule below.

7:57 – 8:05 Homeroom
8:05 – 9:30 Period 1 – Instruction (85 minutes)
9:35 – 11:00 Period 2 – Instruction (85 minutes)
11:05 – 11:45 Specials
11:50 – 12:30 SRT (Switch for Period 3 before Midday)
12:30 – 12:45 Midday
12:50 – 1:20 Lunch
1:25 – 2:45 Period 3 – Instruction (80 minutes)

*On Fridays we will rotate backwards so we have our Homerooms last period.  So our schedule will be Period 3, Period 2, Period 1.

Book Bonanza Begins September 5th!

Students (FYI for Parents),

          Your 5th grade teachers are so excited to offer a fun, competitive reading competition!  We are calling this competition the 5th Grade Book Bonanza.  This contest is going to last from September 5th when we return from Labor Day weekend and last until the end of the trimester on November 9th.  The purpose of the contest is to read as many books as you can to contribute to your triad’s overall points.  The list below is what the contest will consist of, along with the rules. 

  • Who: All 5th grade students, you will be on a team with your triad and you will be competing against other triads
  • When: September 5th-November 9th
  • What: a friendly competition among the triads to read as many books as you possibly can
  • Why: to read, read, read, to receive the traveling book trophy, and to earn a popsicle party at the end of the trimester
  • Where: WIS, home, the bus, at your brother’s soccer game-read whenever you have free time!
  • Rules
    • Every book must be within your level (as determined by your LA teacher)
    • Every 300 pages counts as one book
      • 1-300 pages = 1 book
      • 301-600 pages= 2 books
      • 601-900 pages= 3 books
      • 900 + pages = 4 books
    • Audio books can count, but you MUST follow along with the book while it is being read
    • Each time you finish a book, you will create a small book sign to be displayed. Your book cannot count until you have returned the sign to your LA teacher. 
    • Your homeroom teacher may give you an extra requirement (for example: AR quiz), but that will be left up to each individual triad’s LA teacher.

Good luck and happy reading!

Mrs. Phillips’ Parent – Teacher Conference Sign-Up

Parents of students in Mrs. Phillips’ homeroom, please use the following link to sign up for a parent-teacher conference.  As a triad, teachers meet with their homeroom students’ parents only; however, we do provide feedback for each of our students through the homeroom teacher.  Please sign up for one conference per student.  If more than one conference is needed for a child, or none of the provided times work, please contact Mrs. Phillips directly to schedule.


Social Studies & Science Update from Mrs. Phillips

We have been learning about U.S. Regions in social studies and took a few days to learn about the solar eclipse.  Some concepts your child should have learned about solar eclipses are what happens during a solar eclipse, how to view a solar eclipse safely, and the kinds of solar eclipses – total, partial, and annular.  Students completed work in their science notebooks and turned them in for grading.  I will be grading them this week.  Ask your child to bring home his or her notebook to share.  In social studies, your child should understand the United States is divided into region to make learning about its geographical and cultural characteristics more easily.  Ask your child to name the 5 regions of the United States.  We are learning several geographical vocabulary words as well, which are located in your child’s social studies notebook.  Students will have a quiz over these words on Friday.  You can find Quizlet activities to aid in studying on the homework page.

We started our study of U.S. Regions with a general overview of the major land form regions and bodies of water across the United States, learning the aforementioned vocabulary as we go.  Today, we began study of individual regions, starting with the Northeast.  Students are invited to bring in any U.S. vacation artifacts over the next few days, if convenient, and with your permission of course.  Next week, students will get to choose from some engaging projects to showcase their knowledge of a particular region.  Here are some video links the students have enjoyed while learning about regions.