Sunday, December 11, 2011

What's Up 12/12


I apologize for the delay of several weeks with the blog. The holidays and report cards took up all of my time.

Your child should be working each night on their sea creature research project

Due to the Research project we will not have a December book project. The next book project will be due at the end of January

Winter reading program starts 12/12 all students are expected to participate and turn in forms each week. They can read their January book for this and kill 2 birds with one stone

Pigeon Point money and medical forms were due December 2. Please turn these in so I can send them off. We are still waiting for a few families to turn these in.
Our chaperones for Pigeon Point are
Anthony Saponara
Eric Figueroa
Jeff Phillips
Michael Fitting
Julia Cronin
Marianne Dilworth
Tony Breslin
Michelle Gonzales

I am very grateful that I did not need to draw names from a hat and that we are able to take all chaperones who expressed interest in joining us.

 Fieldtrip to NASA on December 16

If your child is in Reading Academy or Inside they now have access to a paid website to help them practice their reading skills (thanks Marianne for setting this up)
username: readlaba math is getting difficult and I know it's been a long time since you all were in 5th grade go to You Tube and search for "Khan's Academy" for tutorials on math subjects (thanks Michelle)

Behavior –Some times 4’s and 5’s but we are also seeing 2’s and 3’s (sigh…)

Math -  We are working on division. Division with 2 digit divisors and we will be moving into dividing with decimals

English Language Arts – We have been practicing for and taking the ELA Benchmark test
Theme 4 is Person to Person (We will come back to Theme 3 as it deals with the American revolution)


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

NASA Fieldtrip

                                                      November 15, 2011

Dear Parents,
We have a field trip planned for December 16, 2011 to NASA Ames Aerospace Encounter in Mountain View. Our session is from 10:00 am to 12:30 pm. We will leave school at 8:40 and have lunch on the grounds at NASA. I estimate our arrival time for returning to school to be approximately 2:30pm.

Kirsten Julin

My child___________________________has my permission to attend the field trip to
NASA Ames Aerospace Encounter on December 16, 2011 from 8:40-2:30pm.

Parent Signature_________________________

Day time phone number_____________________
Phone number where I can be reached between

I _______________________would like to chaperone on this trip. I can take_______students in my car.

Monday, November 7, 2011

What's Up 11/7

Book Project meeting after school November 18

November 15 there will be an information evening about Pigeon Point at 5:30-6:30. All are welcome to attend. The kids will have a presentation at 1pm that same day

November 18 is Special Person’s Day

Report cards come out December 9

Fieldtrip to NASA on December 16

Behavior –We got all 4’s and 5’s! The class is doing a great job this year.

Math -  We are working on reviewing for our Math benchmark and will take the test on Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday we will look at multiplying decimals with 10’s, 100’s, etc
Please help your child by reviewing what we have learned.

English Language Arts - Theme 2 is Give It All You’ve Got
We are reading The Fear Place and practicing for our ELA Benchmark test which will be given the week of December 5
Strategy focus: predit/infer
Comprehension skill: predicting outcomes
Word work: suffixes –ous and –ward, homophones, Main verbs and helping verbs, and linking verbs


Wednesday, November 2, 2011

What's Up 10/31

Thank you to our room moms for throwing a great Halloween party!
I will be out Thursday attending a math workshop
Book Project meeting after school November 18

Behavior –We got all 4’s and 5’s!

Math -  We are working on rounding, adding and subtracting decimals and reviewing for our Math benchmark
Please help your child by reviewing what we have learned.

English Language Arts - Theme 2 is Give It All You’ve Got
We are reading La Bamba and practicing for our ELA Benchmark test which will be given the week of December 5
Strategy focus; summarize
Comprehension skill: story structure
Word work: multiple meaning words, action verbs and direct objects
Writing: Persuasive essay


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

What's Up 10/17


Conferences this week. The conference schedule is posted on the blog.
Early dismissal this week and the following Monday and Tuesday at 12:50

Your child should be finishing or have finished the book they are reading for the book project and should begin the actual project

PE Friday

Behavior –We got all 4’s last week and one 5!

Math -  We are working on adding and subtracting fractions with unlike denominators

English Language Arts - Theme 2 is Give It All You’ve Got
We are reading La Bamba and reviewing our answers for Theme test 1
Strategy focus; summarize
Comprehension skill: story structure
Word work: root spec/t and opt, multiple meaning words, action verbs and direct objects
Writing: Paragraphing in stories with focus on change of time


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Goal Setting Conferences

These are the times for our goal setting conferences. Your child may attend. Together we will discuss their current academic progress, social-emotional growth, and study habits. We will set goals in each of these areas as needed. Please review the work that has been sent home and bring your concerns and questions.
10/17/11 - Monday
10/21/10  - Friday
1:30 - 1:50  Grace
1:30 - 1:50  Jayden
2:00 - 2:20  Ana
2:00 - 2:20   Luis
2:30 - 2:50  Nader
2:30 - 2:50   Kieran
3:00 - 3:20  Serina
3:00 - 3:20   Max
3:30 -3:50   Jack

10/24/10  -  Monday

1:30 - 1:50  Angel
10/18/10  -  Tuesday
2:00 - 2:20  Zack
1:30 - 1:50  Xavior
2:30 - 2:50  Deja
2:00 - 2:20   Breanna
3:00 - 3:20  Gaida
2:30 - 2:50  Jason
3:30 -3:50  Michael
3:00 - 3:20 

3:30 -3:50  Ryan

10/25/10  - Tuesday

1:30 - 1:50  Stephanie
10/19/10  -  Wednesday
2:00 - 2:20 
1:30 - 1:50   Victoria
2:30 - 2:50  Candice
2:00 - 2:20   Oliver
3:00 - 3:20  Siobhan
2:30 - 2:50  Lily

3:00 - 3:20   Nora

10/20/10  -  Thursday

1:30 - 1:50  Camila

2:00 - 2:20  Anaya

2:30 - 2:50 

3:00 - 3:20   Andrew

3:30 -3:50  Lucian

4:30 – 4:50  Sean 

Monday, October 10, 2011

What's Up 10/10


I will post the conference schedule tomorrow on the blog. Please use it to confirm your time. Your child may come to the conference.

Signups for the Fall Festival were sent home three weeks ago. Our class is in charge of the Garden booth. We need your help!

Book Project Work Session                        First session:            October 14
Your child should be working on their book project every night. Michelle has volunteered her time on several Fridays to help the students make a plan of how to proceed as they work on finishing their books over the rest of the month.

** Students should have chosen which project they plan to do
**Students should bring their copy of the instructions with them
**Students should bring their books
**Students should have read close to half of the book
**Students should bring any work they've already completed
**Students should come with a list of ideas for their chosen project
**Students should bring a snack bar or something so they aren't so hungry they can't concentrate.

Your child should be reading a chapter book, but the number of pages and reading level which vary with each child.  They should be reading a book on their reading level which they are able to comprehend. One way to test a book is as follows:
Have your child read a full page and put a finger down for each word they do not know. If they get to five fingers the book is too difficult.

Behavior –We got all 4’s last week! Way to go!

Math -  We are working on adding and subtracting fractions

English Language Arts - Theme 2 is Give It All You’ve Got
Strategy focus; evaluate
Comprehension skill: fact and opinion
Word work: compound words, word families, common and proper nouns, singular and plural possessive nouns
Writing: organization, writing a strong lead, placing information in the best order.


Monday, October 3, 2011

What's Up 10/3

Please check the blog weekly now that you know it is here. I will always try to post over the weekend. If for some reason I cannot post on the weekend, I will post Monday evening.

 Please, please turn in your emergency cards and disaster forms asap

Turn in your conference sign ups asap.
Signups for the Fall Festival were sent home two weeks ago. Our class is in charge of the Garden booth. We need your help!

Book Project Guidelines went home today and are posted on the blog. Please sign the bottom or send me a note so that I know that you have seen them. Let me know if you think this is too much work for each month after the first one. J Remember that this is part of their homework, and they should be working on it each night.This is my first go round with this and your feedback is much appreciated.

Field trip on Friday! Send a bag lunch.

Volunteers – Please see last week’s post. Thank you to Nora’s mom, Katie, for coming in on Mondays to help the kids and do copying. (Hooray!) Thank you to the room moms for helping round up drivers and putting the kids into groups. (That helps a lot!)

Behavior – We continue to have problems with our behavior at PE, Music, and Art. Maybe the hot weather made us all cranky…Please talk to your student about this. Remind them that school is like their job, and they need to be responsible for their behavior. Today, Monday, the students did an excellent job coming into class and working on their Mathboard. They also did an excellent job going in our Rules Assembly.

Math -  We are working on multiplying and dividing mixed numbers, and adding and subtracting fractions

English Language Arts - Theme 2 is Give It All You’ve Got
This week we will wrap up  Theme 1 and take the theme test
Writing: organization, writing a strong lead, placing information in the best order.


Book Project Guidelines

Independent Reading Book Project Guidelines
Due the last Friday of each month

From your independent reading book, you will need to do a creative project that somehow relates to what you read. 
Pick a project that you would enjoy doing and something that you know you will be able to easily relate to your reading of the book.

Book Project Guidelines

No matter what project you choose, the final project needs to be something that somehow contains these elements:

•The title and author of the book that you read.
•Somehow represents and explains the events and characters.
•It is creative and appealing to the eye—it is colorful, neat, organized, and obvious time,     effort, and thinking went into the creation of it.
•Your writing should have NO grammar or spelling errors and be quality work.
· You may not choose the same Book Project option twice you must complete a different activity each time.
· If you want to complete a Book Project Activity not listed below, please confirm your activity with Ms. Julin in advance.

 Examples of Book Project Activities

1. Interview: 
Interview a character from your book. Write at least 10 questions that will give the character the opportunity to discuss his/her thoughts and feelings about his/her role in the story.  Then pretend you are the character and answer the questions.  Questions must be thoughtful and should not be factual.  One to two pages long.

2. Letter to movie producer:
 Imagine that you are the author of the book you have just read.  Suddenly the book becomes a best seller.  Write a letter to a movie producer trying to get that person interested in making your book into a movie.  Explain in detail why the story, characters, and setting would make a good film.  You may only use books that have not already been made into movies.  NOTE:  Limit the amount of summary in your letter – think analysis. One page or more.

 3. Song Writing:
Write and perform an original song that tells the story of the book. You should be prepared to sing or recite the song lyrics. Include a paragraph explaining how the song fits with the theme of the book.

4. Travel Brochure:
Prepare a 3-fold travel brochure advertising the setting of your book using pictures that you have found or drawn.  This brochure should persuade people to visit the setting of your book.  Somewhere in your brochure you must include a detailed description of the setting of your book.  Your brochure should have information on the front and back and there should not be any blank panels on it. It should be at least 11 by 18 inches before folding.

5. A New Ending! 
Now you can choose what happens to the characters in your book by writing a new ending or an epilogue.  Please include a short one-paragraph summary of your book (including the real ending) at the beginning of your writing. At least 2 pages long. 

6. Timeline: 
Make an illustrated timeline showing the important events of the story from the beginning of the book to the end.  Each event on the timeline should have a picture and a 1-2 sentence caption explaining what the event is.  On the back of your timeline draw a map showing the locations where the events on your timeline took place. Remember, timelines are always in chronological order. (10-20 main events should be described on your timeline)

7. Newspaper: 
Create a newspaper for your book.  Summarize the plot in one article; cover the weather in another, do a feature story on one of the more interesting characters in another.  Include ads that would be pertinent to the story.  Remember to format your newspaper so that it looks like a newspaper. At least 4 pages.

8. Videotape Book Report. Create a "commercial" for a book:
Videotape yourself presenting a 2-3 minute "commercial” for the book read. In the first 30 seconds of the commercial, tell what is good about the book. The next 2 minutes read a favorite passage from the book -- a passage that might motivate others to want to read the book.

9. Poster: 
Make a poster advertising your book so someone else will want to read it.  
Posters must be: 
· The size of a full size sheet of construction paper or poster board
· Posters should not have blank space (use the whole sheet of paper)
· Illustrated with a scene or scenes from the book
· The title and author must be on the poster
· In your writing describe why someone should read your book.  Be creative!

10. Comic Book: 
Make your book into a comic.  Your comic should tell the story of your book, so don’t leave out any important events.  Don’t forget to design a cover for your comic book, and remember comic books have captions (or thought bubbles, etc.) so the characters can talk. At least 4 pages.

11.TV Segment:
Read the same book as one of your friends. The two of you make a video or do a live  performance of MASTERPIECE BOOK REVIEW, a program that reviews books and interviews authors. (You can even have audience participation!)

12. Now You’re Cooking!
Locate a recipe for a food dish that plays a role in the book or one that represents the setting, plot, character, or theme of the book. Write a paragraph explaining how the dish relates to the book read. Share a sample of the food with the class and be prepared to explain why this dish relates to the story.

13. Trading Spaces:
Would you want to trade places with a character in the book? Write a 5-paragraph essay explaining the reasons why. Be specific.

14. Word collage:
Write the title of the book in the center of a sheet of paper. Then look through magazines for words, phrases, sentences, and pictures that illustrate or tell something about your book. As you look, think in terms of the theme, setting, plot line, as well as characters. Work to get fifty such words, phrases, sentences, or pictures so the entire sheet of paper will be covered. The visual impact of the collage should tell a potential reader a lot about the book. Then on a separate sheet of paper, explain some of the items you included on the collage and how they represent your book.

15. Scrapbook:
Pick a character or person from the book you read. Think about all the kinds of mementos you would put in a scrapbook if you had one. Then create a scrapbook for your character/person, cutting out pictures from magazines or drawing the mementos he or she would have in a scrapbook. Include a written explanation about your scrapbook, telling what you included in it, why, and how it relates to the book. Use reasons, explanations, and examples in your writing.

16. Photos or magazine pictures:
Pick a character or person from the book you read. Find several photos or magazine pictures that would have special significance to your character/person. Mount them on a sheet of paper (the goal is to cover the entire sheet of paper) and write a detailed explanation of why they would be important to your character/person. In your writing include reasons, explanations, and specific examples from the book to support your thinking.

17. Photo album:
Think about the events that happened in your book. Decide which scenes or pictures from the book a character/person would want to remember. Then draw several of these “photos” for an album page and write about which pictures the character/person would want in his or her album. Write about the pictures being sure to tell why those pictures would be important to the character. Use reasons, explanations, and examples in your writing.

18. A character alphabet:
Choose a character/person from the book you read. Write who that character/person is and describe what he/she did in the book. Then create sentences (more than just one) based on the alphabet scheme that demonstrate your knowledge of the character/person. Several letters of the alphabet should be multiple sentences long. For example:

C is for the CAMERA Tom gave Maggie so she could begin to
look at the world in new ways.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

What's Up 9/26

Please, please turn in your emergency cards and disaster forms asap
Turn in your conference sign ups asap.
Signups for the Fall Festival were sent home last week. Our class is in charge of the garden booth.

Volunteers – Right now I am looking for volunteers to come in first thing in the morning on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday to monitor the class as they settle in and work on their mathboard. During this time I will also ask the volunteer to do a visual check on completed homework. During this time I would like to pull a small group of English language learners.

I also would like one person to come into class once a week to help with copying and things like that.

Behavior – We did it! We got a 5- in Art this past week! However we had some problems in PE. Ms. Tronvig reported that “the same” small group of students brought our class down to a 4-. I was very upset to see a 3 from music when we had received a 5+ last week. Please talk to your child about this. Remind them that the purpose of school is to learn, not socialize in class, and that it is their job to listen and follow directions. Otherwise they are wasting precious instructional time for themselves as well as the class.

Math -  We are working on multiplying and dividing a whole number and a fraction by a fraction.

English Language Arts - Theme 1 is Nature’s Fury
This week we are continuing to read  Eye of the Storm and beginning Volcanoes.
Strategy focus; monitor/clarify
Comprehension skill: categorize and classify
Word work: word roots struct and rupt, reading dictionary definitions, singular and plural nouns, and long vowels
Writing: details, organization, writing a strong lead, placing information in the best order.


Monday, September 19, 2011

What's Up

We have 32 students in our class. I miscounted last time. There are so many it’s hard to keep track. J

Field trip October 7, to SFMOMA

Turn in your conference sign ups asap.
Make up pictures Tuesday, September 20.
Community on the Green – September 21 5:30-7:30 4th and 5th graders will be performing
Look for signups for the Fall Festival. Our class is in charge of the Garden booth and Snack stand.
Band will start this week. The students do not need to bring an instrument yet.
A series of reading programs are being offered through CSU Eastbay. The web site is

The Biography posters look wonderful!

One student has presented their poster and I have to say… It is my hope that all students get what he got out of this assignment. He worked hard and felt proud of his work. He discovered that the person he chose was actually more interesting that he first thought, and he learned something new from the person he studied.

Behavior – Our class, called “The New Leaves” by Ms. Forrester, was so happy to receive recognition for our restaurant behavior at the all school assembly. On the down side she did have to talk to us about our behavior in Art class.  I am sure that The New Leaves can change this. On the up side, we got a 5+ in music and are doing well in PE.

Math -  We are working on decimals, converting fractions to decimals and decimals to fractions, placing fractions and decimals on the numberline, multiplying fractions and whole numbers, and multiplying two fractions.

English Language Arts - Theme 1 is Nature’s Fury.
This week we are reading Eye of the Storm.
Strategy focus: question
Comprehension skill: text organization
Word work: syllabication, alphabetical order and guide words in the dictionary, conjunctions, compound sentences, and long vowels
Writing: writing an article using who, what, when, where, how.


SFMOMA Permission Slip

September 19, 2011

Dear Parents,

Our class is scheduled to go to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art where we will have a tour that includes a hands-on art activity on October 7, 2011, at 9:50-11:30. We will then go to Yerba Buena Gardens across the street to eat lunch before returning to school at around 1:15.

Thank you,
Kirsten Julin

My child___________________________has my permission to attend the field trip to SFMOMA on October 7, 2011

Parent Signature_________________________

Day time phone number_____________________

I _______________________would like to chaperone on this trip. I can take_______students in my car.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Back to School

Kirsten Julin                                   

BACK-TO-SCHOOL-NIGHT                          or

FIFTH GRADE                 
SEPTEMBER 2011                                                   618-4350 x3214

Grade Level Highlights

Social Studies - United States major pre-Columbian settlements, explorers, relations between new settlers and Native Americans, colonial era, American Revolution, U.S. Constitution, patterns of colonization, immigration, settlements and general information about the fifty states

Math - application of the four basic arithmetic operations to fractions, decimals, and positive and negative numbers, determine length, area, and volume of simple geometric figures with the use of formulas, understand angle measurement and use a protractor and compass to solve problems, use grids tables, graphs, and charts to record and analyze data

Reading - Houghton Mifflin state adopted reading series and literature books aligned with the grade level standards focusing on comprehension, word analysis, fluency, systematic vocabulary development, and language conventions

Science - earth, life and physical sciences emphasizing the scientific method of hypotheses, observations, and experimentation and validation of hypotheses

Language Arts - writing paragraphs and essays in the different genres (narrative, expository, summary, persuasive, response to literature, and letter writing) with a 5th grade focus on personal narratives, persuasive essays, and research reports

Snacks – All students are allowed to eat a healthy snack during their morning recess.  Please try to send snacks that will feed their mind and body as well as their appetites.

Differentiated Curriculum - Curriculum is designed to accommodate varied learning styles and capabilities.  We do this with dynamic multiple groupings, with open-ended assignments, with pre and post testing, and most importantly with a rigorous and challenging curriculum.

Report Cards – Reports are based on grade level standards.  They will be distributed in December, March, and on June 14.

Assessments – In addition to our on-going classroom evaluations, we participate in the district’s math and English/Language Arts assessments that will be given at the end of each trimester.   We also administer Reading assessments to each student three times a year.  The scores will be recorded on the report cards.  Students also take the California STAR Tests.  This year our test window is April 23 – May 18. 

Learning Academy - 4/5 grade groupings. It is 40 minutes a day. Students will go to different classrooms. This is part of our reading intervention program. Students have been assessed and will either attend classes for extra support in reading or participate in other classes to enrich their learning.
5th Grade Promotional Ceremony and Party – These are both on the last day of school and are organized by parent committees.

Parent Volunteers – District policy requires that all volunteers complete the district application before working in the classroom or going on field trips.  If you have a packet on file, please stop by the office to verify that all of your information is up to date.  If you are driving on a field trip, you will also have to complete the district’s auto insurance form, which needs to be completed every year.
Classroom Volunteers – Parents are always welcome in the classroom.  Students welcome the personal attention and assistance they receive from adults.  If you are interested in working in the classroom, please let me know so we can work out a schedule.  If you have a special interest that you would like to share with the students, such as a science lesson, please contact me to set up a time.

Outdoor Education - All 5th graders are invited to an Outdoor Education Program.  It will be located at the Pigeon Point Lighthouse, a program we know well.  It will be 3 days and 2 nights. **It is never too early to begin fund raising.

Common Sense” built around discussions and experiences as we analyze relationships such as problems and solutions, causes and effects, actions and consequences and privileges and responsibilities.

Our class will focus on a program that deals with respecting one another and solving conflicts. We are learning how to better express ourselves with the “I message”, and we are learning how to give a meaningful apology with “the clean up.”


I message

I feel…
When I…
I need…
Will you…?

The Clean Up

I know that I…
I apologize.
What can I do to make it right?
Next time I will…

Will you forgive me?

I encourage you to use these powerful tools in your home to support what we are working on in school.

Weekly Schedule
Computer Lab – Monday 1:05-2:05
P.E. – Monday 2:15-3:00 and Wednesday 9:00 – 9:45
Art – Tuesday 2:15-3:00
Music – Thursday 1:05 – 1:50
Library – Friday 1:15-2:05
Learning Academy – 11:20-12:00

5th Grade Instrumental Music
Wednesdays 12:20 – 12:50 “A” Group
Wednesdays 12:55 – 1:25 “B” Group
Fridays 1:15 – 1:45 “A” Group
Fridays 1:50 – 2:25 “B” Group

Homework - All students are expected to have and use a Roosevelt Planner that they copy their daily assignments into and carry back and forth from school to home every night.  Homework will be assigned every day and occasionally your child will need to work on their long-term projects over the weekend. Homework is a chance for students to practice and apply skills learned in the classroom.  Given that, I understand that occasionally assignments are a bit much. When this happens please send me a short note so I can address the particular issues. Please don’t forget that every fifth grader should be reading 30+ minutes or more each week. Please help teach your child organization and responsibility by looking in their backpack, folder, reviewing their homework, and removing notices.

Monthly Reading Project – Beginning in October your child is expected to turn in a reading project based on the reading that your child does each night.

After School Help – Your child is always welcome to stay after school to get help on homework provided that I do not have a meeting on that day.

Classroom Blog – Find out what we are doing in class and read about upcoming events.  Join our blog (

Field Trips – We are scheduling a variety of field trips that enrich our grade level standards.
  • San Francisco Museum of Modern Art       October 7
·      NASA/AMES                                  December 16
·      Pigeon Point                             January 11 – 13
·      The Tech Museum                         March 23
·      Marine Science Institute                 May 31                               

Helpful Websites – - This is the site the students use in the computer lab.
All second through fifth grade students have a Study Island account.  Student usernames are typically their last name and first initial, plus Roosevelt (e.g. for Joe Smith the username would be SmithJ.Roosevelt).  The password for all students is hornet. - math - social studies - practice math facts and feed the world