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Have You “Herd”?
News for Our Calf Pen Meadow Community
395 Welch’s Point Road  Milford, CT 06460  Office (203) 783-3521  Nurse (203) 301-5618  Fax (203) 783-3680
January 2015 – Edition 5
Dear Calf Pen Meadow Families,
Happy New Year to you all! It is my best hope that each of you has had a wonderful holiday break and that you enjoyed
magical moments with those you hold dear. The school vacation was a much needed respite for all of us: staff, students
and parents. As we return to school, it will be good for all of us to fall back into the rhythm of our predictable routines
I want to use this newsletter as a public opportunity to thank our learning community for the generosity shown over the
holiday season. From the support for the United Way, to the Mitten Tree, Toys for Tots Drive and other collections, I was
astounded yet again by the giving spirit of our school. I am so proud to be a part of such a thoughtful and supportive
On the academic front, during the month of January, students will be taking the second series of NWEA assessments. If you
Mrs. Harkness
recall, the NWEA MAP Assessment is an online, adaptive assessment.
We are also in the midst of administering our winter
DRA reading assessments to students. The faculty and I will analyze results to measure student growth from the fall
administration. The results will offer information relative to individual student’s progress and will help us to determine
instructional programming to support continued growth for each student. Teachers will use student performance on these
measures to design instruction to meet individual learning needs. As always, we will remind students to “just do your
best!” At home, your support in ensuring that your child comes to school daily ready to learn is essential to our partnership
and is critical in realizing the goals we have for each of our students. This midyear time is a good time to check in with your
child’s teacher about his/her learning. Ensuring that your child receives a good night sleep, a healthy breakfast, has a
positive attitude and consistently engages in nightly reading, writing and math practice is so helpful!
As you are aware, our grade level January Open House Sessions are right around the corner! During these sessions you will
have the opportunity to learn more about grade level learning expectations. We hope that the Open House Sessions will
offer you a deeper understanding of what your child needs to know and do to be successful at his/her grade level. As you
know from previous communications, this is our established Parent Performance Feedback Target for this school year.
Thank you to Circe Deitelbaum and her Holiday Fair Committee for offering our young shoppers an opportunity to purchase
thoughtful gifts for their loved ones. They were so proud of their purchases!
On January 16th, thanks to our PTA, the school store will be open. We are so pleased that students are earning Cow Cash
for their At Home Reading and Math practice. On January 21st, we will enjoy a cultural arts presentation- Reach for the
Stars- we are looking forward to it!
I hope that the New Year will be full of much peace, happiness and good health for you all!
Warm regards,
Amy Fedigan
Literacy Update from Mrs. O’Brien
Numeracy Update from Mrs. Koosa
In January, CPM’s 3rd and 4th grade readers will finish their current units of
study and will begin new units toward the end of the month. Grade 5 will
explore editorials and will engage in discussion to present an argument. Below
you’ll find some of the learning expectations for the units, as well as tips you
can use to help your child to be successful.
Grade 3: Unit 5: Biography - Grade 3 students will:
 demonstrate knowledge of the characteristics of a biography
 use knowledge of the a person’s actions, dialogue, reactions to obstacles,
and how they achieved greatness to determine a person’s character traits
 extract and infer important details to demonstrate why a person is still
important in today’s world
 understand why an author choses to write a biography on a particular
 present learned information about the relevancy of a chosen person’s life
Ask your reader:
What made the subject of the book worthy of having a biography
written about him/her?
What character traits would you use to describe him/her? Why?
Grade 4: Unit 4: Poetry, Prose and Drama - Grade 4 students will:
 explore the differences between poetry, prose, and drama
 consider the significance of structural elements in poems, prose, and dramas
 examine details to form interpretations, citing textual evidence to support
their thinking
 read closely to determine the meaning of words and phrases
 read aloud to further convey meaning
 build speaking and listening skills by sharing poems and dramas through
oral presentation
 make connections between the written text of a story or drama and a visual
presentation of the same text
Ask your reader:
Is this text prose or poetry? How do you know?
What do you think this poem is all about? What’s the theme? How do
you know?
What imagery does the author use to help bring the text to life?
What’s the mood of the piece?
If you performed this poem, what tone of voice would you use? What
body movements and gestures would you make?
Grade 5 – Unit 4 – Reading Editorials and Engaging in Discussion - Grade
5 students will:
 read editorials closely to analyze the structure, features, content, and
purpose of the genre.
 compare and contrast multiple perspectives on the same topic.
 research a topic in order to support an opinion.
 examine and practice how to develop and present a strong argument to an
Engage your reader in a discussion about a topic relevant to your lives.
Encourage your child to use the language of opinion, agreement, and
disagreement as he/she presents arguments for or against the issue (In my
opinion…, I strongly believe that…, I agree with you because…, I disagree with
you because…, That’s a good point, but have you thought about…, On the other
Remember . . . Talking is thinking. Thinking is learning. The more your
readers talk, they more they learn!
Grade 3 Mathematicians will:
Write and solve multiplication problems in context using
pictures, skip-counting, repeated addition, and/or arrays to
represent the problem
Write multiplication equations that match the word problem
Use arrays to understand multiplication (prime numbers,
composite numbers)
Find multiples of a number
Develop strategies for division based on understanding the
relationship between division and multiplication
By the end of Grade 3, students are expected to know from memory
all products of two one-digit numbers (up to 9x9).
Grade 4 Mathematicians will:
Solve multiplication problems with 2 digit numbers using the
area (array) model or breaking apart numbers
Develop and practice strategies for solving multiplication and
division problems
Make sense of remainders in the context of a division word
Examine what happens when one or both factors in a
multiplication expression are doubled or halved
Grade 5 Mathematicians will:
Continue to use fraction bars and area models to support the
understanding of multiplying and dividing with fractions
Multiply and divide with fractions within real-world contexts
Read, write, and compare decimals to thousandths
As I sit here writing, it is snowing and
blustery outside, a reminder of all the winter
activities which can cause injuries to our children.
Please remember to notify the school health office
if your child is injured out of school and requires
special accommodations or limitations in activity.
Also I have noticed several changes in the
emergency information given at the beginning of
the year. If you have changed jobs, phone
numbers, babysitters etc. please update your
information. And lastly, if your child is ill or will be
out of school for any reason a phone call is
required with a follow up note upon return to
school. Happy Snow Days!
Happy New Year! This is our learning update for
Calf Pen music;
THIRD GRADE Student will be working more intensely on becoming music reading. They will be focusing on reading
notes from the treble/G-clef staff, reviewing rhythms and rest notation. They will be preparing for playing recorders at the
beginning of February. The recorder is a Renaissance instrument and students will be doing the “Recorder Karate” program,
receiving a ribbon for each music level they master on the recorder. Watch for the information sheet which will be coming
home with them first week of January. Students will also begin an in-depth study of how harmony is created, which will
help them prepare for singing and playing in harmony (vocal and on recorders). They will learn about unison, echo, round,
canon, partner songs, duet, trio, quartet and ensemble singing. They will also sing songs about dragons, and study music and
New Year’s traditions from Japan, including taikyo drumming.
FOURTH GRADE Students will learn music from China, Chinese New Year traditions. They will play gongs, cymbals
and percussion to create a dragon parade. They will sing and play music from Russia and learn about Nationalism in music
from the 1800’s. They will listen to Pictures at an Exhibition, a suite by a Russian composer. Students will also be
preparing for their mid-year solfege , pitch and rhythm assessment, and developing skills towards sight-singing and
musicianship. They will be receiving rewards for each level they master in a program called “Music Olympics.” As they
progress, try to encourage them to sing for you and demonstrate what they can do at each level. . More info to follow on
FIFTH GRADE Our fifth grade students will be learning about the science of sound to compliment their lessons in science
on sound and light. They will learn about carillons and visit the ‘virtual bell carillon’ website for Harkness Bell Tower at
Yale. Students will continue to learn about music composers and music from other time periods. Encourage them to explore
other radio stations than they usually listen to when they are in the car with you. Help them to explore and appreciate music
from other times, cultures and styles. Be adventurous!
Happy New Year to the Calf Pen Meadow community! The classes will be working on Internet
safety, copyright, and web evaluation this month. In addition, the third grade classes will begin learning about the Iditarod
and the Titanic. The fifth grade classes will be taking a mid-year assessment on research skills; they have been working on
finding information accurately in non-fiction text and are presently working actively online as well. I expect them to do well!
The video club has changed membership, and a new crew begins in the New Year. The former members were fantastic and
will be called on to help out in big projects coming up. The Nutmeg Club has finished their first book and will be reading and
blogging on a second book this month. Chess Club will also begin once again on Thursdays.
All classes participated in
the Hour of Code in December. Ask your children about the experience! The computer lab is still open for students wishing
to practice typing, as well as coding. All classes are becoming more comfortable with Google Docs and Google Classroom; I
will be presenting a workshop for interested parents on some of our new programs that the students are learning. 2015 should
be an active, educational, and fun year!