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Monthly Newsletters


We’ve completed 100 days of school!  Kindergarten students have become quite knowledgeable in their math and reading skills during these first 100 days.

It is hard to believe that the first half of the year is already done!  Students have made great strides in their reading, phonics and math skills.  Thank you for your continued support in helping your children acquire and master these important skills necessary for a successful entry to first grade!

In phonics, students will continue to decode and write C-V-C words with short vowel “a” and learn short vowel “i,” while continuing to identify the middle vowel sound in words.  In reading, students will work on retelling events in a story in the order in which they occurred.  They will learn cause and effect, author’s purpose and draw conclusions in fiction stories.  To help your child with these skills, please ask him/her to discuss events occurring in a story.  While reading with your child, stop at different intervals and discuss what the effect was when something happened in a story.  Ask your child why the author wrote the story (to entertain or inform) and use descriptive words to tell about a character in a story.

In math, students will build on their number sense skills by reviewing teen numbers, counting to 100, and recognizing and writing numerals.  We will concentrate on solidifying number sense and counting skills to ten.  To help your child with these skills, please incorporate counting and numeral skills in your everyday living activities.  This enables your child to see and understand practical, everyday uses and needs of number sense.

Finally, mid year PALS scores will be sent home at the beginning of February,  Please feel free to contact your child’s teacher with any questions or concerns regarding your child’s scores.

1st Grade

February is full of learning!  We have turned our reading focus to summarizing fiction and nonfiction.  In spelling we are working on nasals like ng, mp, nd, and nk.  In math, we are working on fractions as well as telling time to the half hour.  

In social studies, students are focusing on biographies and will learn about some of our American leaders and their contributions to our country.  In class, we are discussing people such as President Washington and Lincoln, George Washington Carver, Benjamin Franklin, Maggie Walker, Powhatan, Pocahontas and Christopher Newport.

Mid year PALS testing was administered in early January, and results were sent home in students’ orange folders.  If you have questions or would like to have a conference with your child’s teacher, please contact your her to schedule a meeting.

We will exchange valentines on Wednesday, February 14th.  Class lists and valentine fliers will go home in orange folders.  We ask that if your child brings in valentines, please bring one in for each child in the class.   Please remember that candy is not to be sent in with valentines as candy can not be sent home with students on buses.  Thank you.  

2nd Grade

It is hard to believe we are half way through the school year and in the middle of the third quarter of second grade.  Mid-year PALS testing was completed in January and score reports were sent home.  Please contact your child’s teacher with any questions or concerns you may have.

In reading, our main comprehension focus has shifted to summarizing fiction and nonfiction text.  In order to summarize fiction text, students will determine the main idea of a story, the problem and solution, characters, setting and story events.  Students will learn to describe the structure of the story by using the beginning, middle and end to summarize and retell the story.  With nonfiction text, they will focus on finding the main idea and supporting details of a text.  

In math, students have been comparing numbers, rounding and estimating and they are moving on to learning strategies in order to add and subtract two-digit numbers. Students will continue to have a Three-a-Day math quiz each Friday, which will have questions that are similar to their weekly Three-a-Day morning work.  Students bring their Three-a-Day morning work sheet home each Thursday and should study it as well as practice problems similar to their morning work in order to prepare for the quiz     

When the weather allows, we try to go outside for recess each day.  Please remember to send your child to school each day with a jacket and any other cold weather gear, such as a hat, gloves and scarf to keep him/her warm.


Additionally, this is the time of year where the flu virus is a significant concern.  Please keep your student home if he/she has a fever or any other flu-like symptoms.  We appreciate you helping us keep all students as healthy as possible.


Our YMCA Learn to Swim program begins on Friday, February 2nd.  Please be sure to send in your student’s swimsuit and towel in a bag each Monday of the program.  We appreciate you labeling your student’s bag for ease of distribution on Fridays.

Finally, we cannot stress enough how important it is for students to be reading for at least 15 minutes every night.  Students should not only read teacher-selected texts but also choose their own books to read.  It is vital that students enjoy what they are reading, and letting children choose some books on their own (on their reading level, of course) will help make it successful.  

3rd Grade

During the month of February, students will work on fractions and money in math.  They will learn how to look at the value of a fraction and compare them to other fractions.  Students will gain an understanding of what a unit fraction is and how 1/12 is smaller than ½ even though the denominator is a bigger number.

In science, students will begin to look at animal adaptations.  They will learn about different environments and how animals adapt to them.  They will also discuss the food chain of different animals and how the food chain works.

In social studies, we will continue to talk about Ancient Rome, and will look at the effects that ancient Rome has had on our world today.

In reading, students will continue to focus on summarizing fiction texts, as well as determining the main idea.  They will work on identifying the details that support the main idea, identify the problem and the resolution in a fiction text.  

In writing, we will begin the unit on Fiction. Students will hear examples of fiction that are used as models to help students with their own writing.  Then they will write their own fiction piece, and complete the writing process and publish it.

4th Grade

In reading, fourth grade students will continue to read and write a summary of nonfiction texts. They will also continue to identify an author's purpose for writing and elements of a story's structure in order to draw conclusions and make predictions. Please encourage your child to read at least twenty minutes each evening.

In math, students will work on the unit on fractions. Students will be expected to add and subtract fractions with like and unlike denominators.

In science, students will complete their unit on Electricity.

We are beginning our New Nation unit.  Students will demonstrate knowledge of the role of Virginia in the establishment of the new American nation and identify the three branches of Virginia government and the function of each.  Please encourage your child to study nightly!

5th Grade


Students will focus on the following skills during the month of February:

5.17  The student will describe the relationship found in a number pattern and express the  


5.11  The student will measure right, acute, obtuse and straight angles.

5.12  The student will classify:

               a)   angles as right, acute, obtuse, or straight; and

               b)   triangles as right, acute, obtuse, equilateral, scalene or isosceles.

5.13 The student, using plane figures (square, rectangle, triangle, parallelogram, rhombus and

       trapezoid), will:

             a)   develop definitions of these plane figures; and

             b)   investigate and describe the results of combining and subdividing plane figures.

We encourage your child to use his/her ixl account at home to review previously taught skills as well as the skills we are currently working on.  The website is and the username is your child’s lunch number followed by @kgcs.  The password is 2016kgc$.


In science, fifth grade students will investigate and understand basic characteristics of visible light and how it behaves. Key concepts include:

  1. transverse waves;

b) the visible spectrum;

c) opaque, transparent and translucent;

d) reflection of light from reflective surfaces; and

e) refraction of light through water and prisms.

Please make sure your child is studying throughout the week for his/her science L.O. quiz that is given on Friday.  He/she should also be studying the notes on the Light unit. Students may log onto for extra practice and review. The password to log in is: seal.

Reading and Writing

In reading, our focus turns to summarizing  nonfiction.  We will be working with structural patterns, locating information in text, and main idea along with supporting details.

5.6   The student will read and demonstrate comprehension of nonfiction texts.

a)   Identify the main idea of nonfiction texts.

b)   Summarize supporting details in nonfiction texts.

c)   Identify structural patterns found in nonfiction.

d)   Locate information to support opinions, predictions, and conclusions.

In writing, we will be writing more creatively with fictional ideas and personal narrative stories.

5.7   The student will write for a variety of purposes: to describe, to inform, to entertain, to explain and to persuade.

  1. Identify intended audience.

  2. Use a variety of prewriting strategies.

  3. Organize information to convey a central idea.

  4. Write a clear topic sentence focusing on the main idea.

  5. Write multi-paragraph compositions.

f)    Use precise and descriptive vocabulary to create tone and voice.

g)   Vary sentence structure by using transition words.

h)   Revise for clarity of content using specific vocabulary and information.

i)    Include supporting details that elaborate the main idea.

5.8   The student will edit writing for correct grammar, capitalization, spelling, punctuation, sentence structure and paragraphing.  

  • Students should continue to read nightly for 20-30 minutes.  Have discussions about the text your child is reading.

6th Grade

In reading, students are writing summaries for nonfiction text. They are also continuing to increase their vocabulary skills. For example, students are identifying figurative language, using context clues to identify unknown words, and using affixes and roots to determine unknown words. Students are working on expository nonfiction writing by conducting research on a topic and then writing a paper on it. Remember, your child should read 20 minutes each night, and he/she should be able to have a meaningful conversation about their reading with an adult or older sibling.

In history, students are exploring the technological and social changes between 1890-1945, the Roaring 20s, the Great Depression and New Deal. During this time students will analyze and interpret primary and secondary sources, maps, charts, graphs and photographs. Additionally, students will compare and contrast these events with previous or current political moments. Finally, students will determine the multiple causes and effects of these situations on the U.S. and the world.

In math 6, students will be learning about properties of quadrilaterals (rectangles, squares, rhombuses, kite, trapezoid.)  They will look at how to sort and classify them based on qualities such as parallel sides, angles and congruent sides. They will also work on dependent and independent events and their probabilities.

In math 6x, students will continue the unit on geometry. They will learn to find the surface area and volume of many three-dimensional figures including, cubes, rectangular prisms and cylinders.  Students are very eager to continue working with everyday objects and discover how to find the surface area and volume by exploring different aspects and properties of the three-dimensional shapes. If students have any small cubes, rectangular prisms or cylinders at home they are welcome to bring them to class so we can determine the surface area and volume of each object.

In science, students completed atomic structure and elements and explored chemical bonding and chemical reactions. They will begin to examine the Earth’s surface. This study of matter prepares them as they learn about various phenomena experienced on Earth and how it affects us and we affect Earth. In addition to the textbook, we continue to enhance our education of local science by working with Friends of the Rappahannock in order to learn more about our interactions with the Rappahannock River in a hands-on approach..