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Room 214 News, February 2009

Dear Parents,

We have had a very busy start to 2009. Thank you to all who came to the Portfolio Sharing two weeks ago. The kids love to share their work, and it helps to set goals for the second half of our school year.

Last week we finished our series of Observational Drawing lessons with artist (and former Barton student) Emily Isenberg. We have been learning drawing techniques and noticing details in insects and flowers. This will help improve our ability to record observations in Science and other areas.

We are applying these skills as we record the growth of our amaryllis plants. We are in week five after planting the bulbs. We have a range from 6 cm to 23 cm in height.

Last week we began studying components and styles of poetry. During our visit to Walker Senior Club, we shared winter experiences and wrote winter poems with the elders. Soon we will have final drafts and photos with the elders displayed out in the hall.

In Math we finished a unit on multiplication and are now working with addition and subtraction strategies of 3 and 4 digit numbers. A description of this unit is attached. We will begin a geometry unit toward the end of next week.

We had lots of fun swimming last week. We all cheered as Falastin passed the deep-end test for the first time. You can view photos of swimming and our visit to Walker Senior Club on the Room 214 page of bartonopen.org.

We are beginning a Science unit on electricity and magnetism. We are going to do a special “light up” Valentine card project on Thursday morning, using what we have learned about circuits. Each child will need a 9-volt battery for this project. Please send the 9-volt battery to school with your child by Thursday, February 12. If you have any old Christmas lights you want to donate, we could use them as well.

Finally, tomorrow will be our first time exchanging Media Center books since Winter break. Please help your child look for any Barton Media Center books and return them tomorrow. The upcoming book exchange dates to put on your calendar are Feb. 24, March 10, March 24 and March 31.

Thank you for reading this long letter and for all your support.

Sincerely,

Mark