This week in Preschool, the students continued their study of the ocean and the creatures that live in it. The class discussed their favorite ocean animals, what they eat, that a group of fish Is called a school of fish, (just like where we are!) and how some creatures have special features like lights to help them see or catch food where it’s too far down for the sun’s light to reach. The students also discussed shapes, counting backward from 30, letters J and K, and worked on colors and patterns.



This week room 200 has been diving deeper into the World of Work to discover our own RIASEC letters. The students took a survey to help them discover the things they like and do not like to do. The students then used the scores from the survey to determine the children’s areas of interest on the RIASEC and added their photos to our class display. Next they will be researching jobs and hobbies that fall under each area of the RIASEC to see what types of things the children may like to do in the future. Mrs. LaGiglia also sent home a copy of the survey for parents to try in the hope of spurring some interesting conversations around the dinner table. Kindergarten students also learned that all of the grade levels learned in a one-room schoolhouse while studying the past and present in social studies. They learned in OG phonics that the letter y can make more than one sound depending on where it is located in a word. The students also learned that they can create new forms using a variety of learned 2-D shapes in geometry.

On a very positive note Braden Beard, won a Kindle Fire this week for leveling up in reading! The kinders are even more pumped to learn how to read better so they can level up again!!! 

Kindergarteners from room 200 ate green eggs and ham to celebrate Dr. Seuss. Most of them like it.

First Grade

The students are so excited that it’s a new month in 1st grade! In 1st grade at Van Buren, the class theme is rainbows. March is the perfect month to explain to students why rainbows is our theme. They have been asking all year why Mrs. Morgan loves rainbows, why does everything have a rainbow, and now Mrs. Morgan gets to share. “I wish I would have taken a picture of their faces because it finally made sense to them. Rainbows are beautiful and filled with different colors. Each color is beautiful on their own, and also beautiful put together in a rainbow. Just like they are. They’re all beautiful on their own, and 1st grade is so special when we all come together. So for March we are focusing on how we are diverse, what diversity means, what it looks like for 1st graders, and how we can celebrate everyone’s diversity. Students created a rainbow this week and thought about how they’re unique. They chose 8 things to add to their rainbow that’s unique about them. It took them some time to think about their unique qualities because that’s not something they think about every day. They had so much fun realizing how they’re each special. 

Second Grade

Innovation in 2nd grade looks like discovery through new writing topics and self-expression through illustrations of those newly discovered ideas.

Third Grade

Students spent the entire week gearing up for the IREAD test. We did multiple activities to practice reading comprehension, decoding words, prefixes, and suffixes. On Friday, students were able to play review board games. Students also continued to work on comparing fractions based on the numerator and denominator. 

Fourth Grade

This week in 4th grade have been very busy! They learned how to use possessive pronouns in grammar and completed a task card scoot. In reading- they are examining Aesop’s Fables to determine the theme. The students particularly liked The Lion and The Mouse. Our 4th grade writers completed their narrative rough drafts. They used BTE outlines to plan for the narrative prompt and knocked out a 5 paragraph essay in no time! Our fourth graders have also been busy building their portfolio websites! Ask them to show you their progress so far!

Fourth Grade mathematicians started a new unit about fractions. They practiced fractions on a number line and completed some fraction challenges with pattern blocks. In Social Studies, they read about the Miami Native American Tribe and their life in Indiana.

Fifth Grade

Our brains and our hands have worked hard this week at researching, answering questions about the research, and then writing a narrative based on our research! The students struggled in the beginning, but feel much more confident in completing a performance task now that they have gone through it step by step.

The students spent an afternoon this week discussing their RIASEC letters and the meaning, skills, and possible jobs/careers that each letter represents. They created visual representations of their Holland codes and will display these on a bulletin board outside of their classroom.

In fifth grade math, students have started their fraction module! This week they have been busy discovering how fractions are nothing more than fancy division problems, looking at mixed numbers and improper fractions, writing equivalent fractions, comparing fractions, and finding common factors for a set of numbers. Whew! It has been a busy week! 

In social studies, the students are learning about lines of latitude and longitude and the 5 regions of the United States. The students are excited about finding the coordinates for their home addresses next week. 


Kindergarten – This week the big bad wolf visited the Science room to test their houses the students built. He huffed and puffed, but was not very successful in blowing the houses down. He was not successful because our kindergarteners did an excellent job of being engineers and scientists by taking what they have learned about structure and function and applying it when designing and building their houses. They really enjoyed seeing their hard work go into practice and seeing success. 

1st Grade – This week the students learned about migration. They learned why some animals migrate. They learned that there are more similarities between migration and hibernation than they may have realized. For example, they learned what animals need before they can migrate, which is similar to what animals need before they hibernate. Animals need lots of food before both so that they will have energy. They also combined some computer science in with our lessons this week. Students were introduced to the educational game platform called Kahoot! They loved it. They got to enjoy learning and playing at the same time. 

2nd Grade – This week students spent their two science sessions building their final design of their popsicle saving devices. This is the modeling step in our PLTW engineering design process. Students loved gathering materials, building, and seeing their hard work and designs come to fruition. Students will test their final designs next week. afterwards they will really get to enjoy the fruits of their hard work by getting to eat a popsicle just like the one they saved from melting.

3rd Grade – This week the students finished building our final PLTW glider designs. The students began testing their designs using cargo weight to make sure they solved their PLTW proposed problem. Students are recording data and recording if their gliders met the goals that are also models of the real world problem they are trying to solve.

4th Grade – This week students finished their lesson on landslides. Students went to work planning ways that they could save houses from landslides or prevent landslides (student choice). Students began drawing sketches of their ideas and documenting their ideas in writing. They finished the week with student presentations of their plans and ideas. Students were then allowed to ask questions and provide suggestions to the presenting students. The students did great with their planning and presentations.

5th Grade – The students spent this week building and finishing our mechanical tests. They traded their tests with other groups and began the testing process. This testing process included multi-day data collection. They were testing bend strength, elasticity, and fatigue strength of different products and materials. Students are really enjoying this process.


Penrose Triangles from the 5th grade.
1st Grade drawings of the Cat in the Hat!

School Nurse

The Mobile Dentist is coming back to Van Buren! Please remember to complete your registration paper and send it back to the school. These are due in by Feb 20th.
This week the Health Room has started seeing the stomach bug. This is not uncommon for this time of year, however it’s never a fun experience. Remember to keep hydrated, popsicles are a good way to rehydrate gently. We do ask that the students be vomit free for 24 hours before returning to school, this will help reduce the spread.
Please remind student to wash their hands often.