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Alexanders 4th Grade Newsletter

Introduction to School

Letter of Introduction
Dear Parents, Hello! I am Jackie Alexander and I am thrilled to be your childs 4th grade teacher this year. This is my first year teaching at this school. I am really looking forward to the year ahead of us. Both this school and I are fully committed to helping your student reach his/her greatest potential. I have recently graduated from the University of Illinois. I majored in Elementary Education with a concentration in Math. In my free time, I love to travel, read, and dance. I am looking forward to an exciting year of learning and to getting to know you and your child better! Sincerely, Jackie Alexander

Developing Community
In my classroom we are a family and I expect each student to treat others with respect and equity. Throughout the year we will be developing out community skills by working with others in our classroom. Students will have the opportunity to work with one or more students during group projects, center time, partner reading, and more.

As a person who is always interested in learning about other cultures, I want to share this interest with the class. I will teach students about the cultures I know about throughout the year. I also welcome students to share their own culture with the class. Students should feel free to bring in possessions and stories from their culture throughout the year. Through learning about one another and other cultures, we will learn more about the world and become more tolerant of others.

A picture of me on a trip to London.

Ms. Alexanders Classroom Newsletter Page 2

Classroom Management
Student Expectations
Students are expected to show up to school prepared to learn. This means students need to have their homework done and their school supplies with them. Students are also expected to treat others with equity and respect. Through these expectations, our classroom will become a family that is prepared to learn.

Homework Policy
Students are expected to turn in homework on time. If students do miss school, they will have two days to complete homework for every one class they were out. I welcome parents to help their children with their homework; I just ask that parents do not tell students the answers. Instead please help guide student to discover the correct answer themselves. Also, if parents would like, I am willing to send home math answer sheets for the each new unit we are working on. I would be willing to do this upon request. I want a lot of parent support at home. If students need a little extra help at home with homework, I ask that parents give that help to students. If there is any way I can help parents give support at home, please let me know. I also expect students to be reading 30 minutes every night. It is important for students to have continual practice to develop their reading skills. It would be great if students could read to parents a couple nights a week! Finally, I will require students to write down their assignments in their assignment notebooks at the end of every day. It is my hope that parents will have the opportunity to look at assignment notebooks every night. If students show their parents their assignment notebooks and have parents sign the notebook to prove they have seen it, I will allow that student to sign the respect board for a chance to win a prize at the end of the week.

Students working nicely in groups, while following the three rules.

Classroom Rules
Respect Others Respect Yourself Respect Property

Ms. Alexanders Classroom Newsletter Page 3

Management Strategy
I believe in positive reinforcement. I think that the students who are doing well should be rewarded and that this will be an incentive for everyone to do well. However, if students continually misbehave, I am not afraid to use punishment. In my classroom we will use the ladder management system. Students will start off in the middle of the ladder and go up the ladder and receive rewards if they do well or go down the ladder and face punishments if they misbehave. Below is a description of what will happen at every stage.

Your Child Should Receive an A

I believe that students should be able to go back over work and fix the mistakes that they make. To me it is much more important that my students eventually understand the material than about the grade they got originally. I believe students should go back and fix their mistakes because if they do not go back and learn what they did wrong and how to fix it, there will be a less likely chance that they will learn how do the material at all and as a result they will have a harder time learning other new material that builds off the old material. If students fix their mistakes and show that they now understand the material, I will happily raise their grade. I will even allow students to redo tests, but they will have to retake the test in the same setting. If your child is willing to redo their work, to correct all their mistakes, there is no reason your child should not receive an A in my class.

+5- The students clothespin goes in the hall of fame and they will be given a new clothes pin. +4- The students clothes pin gets a bling sticker. +3- The students clothes pin will be pinned to the teachers shirt and the teacher will brag about the student to other teachers in the hallway. +2- The students clothes pin will go up the ladder. +1- The students clothes pin will go up the ladder. 0- Starting point -1- The students clothes pin will go down the ladder and the student will receive a warning -2- The students clothes pin will move down and the student will lose their beanbag privileges for read-toself. -3- The students clothes pin will go down and I will make a call home to parents. -4-The students clothes pin will go down and the student will receive a pinkslip. -5-The students clothes pin will go down and the student will receive a detention.

Late Homework
I expect all students to turn in their homework on time, unless they have excused absences. The first day students forget to turn in their work, I will give them a verbal warning. The second day that homework is late, I will take off 10% of the students grade. Late work is the only time I will not allow students to receive 100% on an assignment. For every day after this another 10% will be taken off every sequential day until the assignment is turned in. I think that as long as students put in the effort they should be given the time it takes them to raise their grade. However, when students do not turn in homework, it shows that they are not trying, so I will lower their grade as a consequence.

Absences from School

It is the parents responsibility to contact the school and let them know if their child will be missing from school. If you know of an absence in advance please call the school as soon as possible. Also please contact me asap of any upcoming absences so I can get students the work they will miss. If it is not possible to let the school know ahead of time, please let them know as soon as the absence occurs.

Ms. Alexanders Classroom Newsletter Page 4

Please Contact Me!

I welcome parents to contact me whenever they have any comments, concerns, or questions about their child or their childs education. I would be happy to communicate with all of you either over the phone, through email, or preferably through setting up a conference before or after school. Below are all the ways I can be reached by: School number- xxx-xxx-xxxx My phone number- xxx-xxx-xxxx Email-jalexand25@gmail.com

Parent Helpers
If you are interested in helping out in our classroom this year, please contact me. I think it is important for students to see their parents involved in their education. I would also appreciate it if parents could sign up to volunteer on fieldtrips or to bring in snacks for classroom parties. Signup sheets for these two activities will be coming home throughout the year closer to the dates. If parents are unable to help out, I totally understand. I just ask that you support your student in their education as much as you can at home.

Upcoming Events
Open House and Ice Cream Social Tuesday, September 6, 6:30 P.M. Classroom Potluck Where: Hessel Park When: Saturday. September 10, 12:00p.m. What: This will be a chance for everyone from our class to get together and meet everyone and their families. Please bring a dish that is important to your family.