Friday, November 20, 2009

School Fundraiser and Bake Sale at Nonesuch Books

Just in time for the holidays!  On Wednesday,  December 9th,  we will be having a school fundraiser at Nonesuch Books in Mill Creek.  Nonesuch Books will be donating 20% of the total sales between 6-8pm to the school,  and we will be having a bake sale at the same time!

We need your help to:
*Spread the word about shopping at Nonesuch Books on the evening of December 9th.
*Come in and do your holiday shopping during the fundraiser! Nonesuch Books has a great selection of books,  cards,  and gifts,  and a great kids’ section too.
*Bring some baked goods for the bake sale that evening,  or to school that day.

                     Great for the holidays - Spread the word!

School Field Trip to see Yamoto Drummers of Japan

Tuesday, November 10,  the school went on a field trip sponsored by the PTA to see the Yamoto Drummers of Japan.   This was a fabulous opportunity to see traditional Japanese percussion instruments and the percussionists! 

Students gave rave reviews:
“It was amazing!   They were awesome!   The drummers were terrific - super!   The best thing I ever saw!   It was cool when they lifted up the big drum and put it on its side.   We loved the noises the drummers made!  The big drum stick was huge!   They had big muscles!  People loved the guy with the mohawk hair.  He was hilarious.  He wanted everybody to clap,  and he made us do it in a funny way!  If you have not gone yet,  I think you should.  It's a lot of fun.  Every act kept the spectators' attention.”

Mrs. Olson commented:
“The trip was wonderful!  It was great to have the children exposed to such a unique talent.  I was tickled to see how the children responded to the subtle humor the drummers included in their performance.”

Teachers incorporated this field trip into learning activities:
     Before the field trip, Mrs.  Stevens’ class learned a bit about taiko drumming and a bit about the country of Japan.  They also read and compared three different versions of a Japanese folktale, The Peach Boy.   Students also learned about haiku poetry and wrote their own haiku.
     Mrs. Cloutier’s class wrote haiku about the performance; see back for some examples of their work!
     Mrs. Dadmun’s class wrote cinquain poetry,  some of which is featured on the back of this newsletter!
     Mrs. Poore’s class wrote News Articles after the performance.
     Mrs. Grant’s class wrote journal entries after the field trip.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Annual Pumpkin Transporting Vehicle Convention

On Friday, November 11, Mr. Caldwell and Mrs. Poore's classes hosted the Pumpkin Transporting Vehicle Convention. The students used at least 4 simple machines to make one complex machine to safely transport a pumpkin a distance of 12 feet. Some simple machines used were: screws, inclined plane, wedges, pulleys, wheel and axle, gears, and levers. Parents and other classes came to view the event!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Annual Harvest Feast for 4th and 5th graders

On Thursday, October 29th, Mrs. Cloutier's and Mrs. Dadmun's students hosted Mrs. Poore's and Mr. Caldwell's classes for the 4th annual Harvest Meal.  Approximately one hundred and twenty people attended the event, held in the social hall of the First Congregational Church.  The menu was Japanese, including an appetizer of edamame (soy beans served in their pods), miso soup with turnip and greens, salad with sesame dressing, sushi rollups made with rice, cucumber, and tuna in a nori seaweed wrapper.  Dessert, following tradition for the Harvest Meal, was apple crisp with whipped cream.  People with knowledge of such things claim the meal was delicious, and rivaled the offerings of many of Portland's fine Japanese dining establishments. 
     Produce for the meal was grown in the Small School gardens, and included soy beans, snow peas, Asian cabbages, turnips, daikon, carrots, garlic, cucumbers and chard.   These vegetables were planted by last year's 4th grade and tended by volunteers over the summer break.  Much of the cooking took place on Wednesday, prior to the meal, and was supervised by a small army of parents.  In spite of the open gas flames and abundant sharp, steely knives, no one was injured, and there was much fun, learning, and tasting of new foods.