Dear Sprague Community,

This seems like a mixed up week with 2 days off. Thursday feels like Monday. In any case, we are fortunate to be enjoying such nice weather in October, especially given the fact that we seem to have missed two Atlantic hurricanes.

Math Instruction

Last week I wrote a bit about literacy instruction. This week, I’d like to share some information about the Standards for Mathematical Practice that are woven into the curriculum at all grade levels K-5. Each grade level has a set of content standards for math, but all grade levels share the same Standards for Mathematical Practice. The SMP’s, as they are called, promote habits of mind in mathematics that help students access the content and develop the thinking skills needed to solve more complex problems as they progress through the grades. They are:

  1. Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
  2. Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
  3. Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.
  4. Model with mathematics.
  5. Use appropriate tools strategically.
  6. Attend to precision.
  7. Look for and make use of structure.
  8. Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.

As you can see, these are skills students will use well beyond the 5th grade. At Sprague, we try to promote the development of these skills by asking students to explain their thinking and respond to the thinking and reasoning of their peers. It is not enough to just get the right answer. We want our students to understand how they got the answer and be able to explain the strategies they used to find it. We use the TERC Investigations program, which utilizes student inquiry and discussion a great deal. That’s not to say there aren’t times when direct instruction doesn’t occur to teach a mathematical concept. We also expect students to choose strategies that match the problem and help them solve it efficiently.

After School Enrichment Registration Still Open

It’s not too late to sign up for after school enrichment classes. Visit the Recreation Dept. website to enroll. Classes start next week.

Fall Festival

The Sprague Fall Festival is next Tuesday, Oct. 18th from 5-7 pm. (The raindate is Oct. 20th.) Please consider coming out for some family fun. You can hear our own Sprague parent band, “Hearts on Fire,” make your own scarecrow, and have a snack. There will be popcorn, cider, and donuts available. You can pre-order a scarecrow frame and bring your own clothes to make the scarecrow. Hay and fabric will be available to craft the head and decorate the clothes you bring.

Halloween Parade

We have an annual costume parade on Monday, Oct. 31st. Students may wear or bring a costume, but should have comfortable clothes for the day. The parade will take place at 9 a.m. Classes walk around the exterior of the school in two directions and meet at the end for photos. Your child’s teacher will tell you the meeting place for the class. Ms. Stabnick encourages students to be creative and make all or part of their costumes. See attached document. For safety reasons masks or toy weapons of any kind are not allowed for the parade. Students need to be able to see to walk around the parade route. Parents are welcome to meet the parade outside.

2016 Halloween Challenge Info-2.pdf

Dates to remember:

Oct. 18: Walk to School Day

Oct. 18: Fall Festival (5-7 PM) Raindate is Oct. 20

Oct. 19: Grade 4 Architectural Showcase 8:45

Oct. 19: MCAS presentation for parents @ 9:30

Oct. 25, 26, 27: Scholastic Book Fair

Oct. 27: Picture re-take day

Oct. 31: Halloween Parade @ 9

Nov. 1, 2, 9: Parent Conferences—12:00 dismissal

Nov. 8: Election Day—late start at 10:30

Nov. 9: WEF Spelling Bee

Weekly note from Ms. Snyder–October 13, 2016
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