Tracy Aviary field trip, Mr. John not in school this week

Dear parents,

Just a few things about the Tracy Aviary field trip this Tuesday:

  1. Please try to be at North Shore parking lot between 8.10 and 8.15. The bus will arrive at 8.15 and we need to get away to Salt Lake as soon as possible, so that we can register our arrival at 9.30 and begin our tours. Please DO NOT send your child to the classroom on Tuesday morning.
  2. Friday dress code of jeans and a plain collared top is appropriate, along with a sack lunch and appropriate clothing for the weather. It is supposed to be a cool and sunny 54F with no rain.  Again, please no Halloween costumes or masks.
  3. Please remind your children that cell phones are not allowed on the trip, not even to take photographs. This is a school-wide policy. Cameras however, are welcome
  4. We leave the Aviary at 1.15 pm, arriving back at school well in time for normal pick up.
  5. Ms. Amy will be the overall teacher in charge (we are going with Ms. Amy’s class), and Ms. Emily and Ms. Dixie will be in charge of our class directly.

Lastly, a reminder that I will not be in school this week, but will be answering emails if you have any queries.

Thank you!


School server issues, Tracy Aviary field trip, IXL, absence next week, Fall Festival

Dear parents,

The school is changing over to a new telephone system, which is causing unsuspected problems downstream with the server. This meant that emails going out to parents from Thursday until today, have not been delivered. It may have affected external emails coming in to me, but I am not sure. If you have emailed me since Thursday and not received a reply, can you email me again please. Thanks, and I’m sorry about these technology issues.

Just a reminder to please get your permission slips for the Tracy Aviary back to me before the end of the week. This is because I will not be at school next week, as I have to go back to England to deal with some family issues. Ms. Emily and Ms. Dixie Brenchley will be in charge and it’s not easy for them having to chase up permission slips. This is because they will not have full access to parents’ emails and phone numbers without going through the front office. Of course I can access any general queries you may have via email.

The schedule for next week will be:

Monday AM: work cycle and computer lab. PM: science

Tuesday all day: Tracy Aviary field trip.

Wednesday AM: work cycle and computer lab. PM: Day of the dead art and celebration.

Thursday AM: Work cycle and PE. PM: cultural work (either rainforest projects, or history and geography).

Friday AM: Either Native American Heritage and/or Veteran’s Day art project. PM: Possible readathon.

The returning times for the field trip have changed slightly, in that the bus has to leave Tracy Aviary at 1.15 pm. This will not affect pick up and I am still hoping to leave at 8.20 am in order to make full use of the tours beginning at 9.30 am. Ms. Amy will be the teacher in charge on the day.

I’m not sure  if I have made this clear, but there is an expectation that students do at least 30 minutes of IXL math a week at home. Below is the list of which subjects can be tackled. Some of these we are about to start on this week, so the students may, or may not be comfortable with all the problems:

6th grade: A1 – A5 (whole numbers); B1 – B7 (multiplication); C1 – C6 (division); E1 – E9 (factors and multiples); I1 – I10 (fraction review); L1 – L8 (fraction division);  R1 – R9 (ratios & rates); S1 – S8 (percent).

5th grade: A1 – A7 (place values and number sense); B1 – B7 (addition and subtraction); C1 – C23 (multiplication); D1 – D16 (division); E1 – E3 (exponents); G1 – G17 (decimals); O1 – O4 (mixed operations).

4th grade: A1 – A9 (number sense); B1 – B7 (addition); C1 – C5 (subtraction).

Thank you everybody and please remember the Fall Festival this Friday October 27th from 4-7! Bouncy castles, games and lots of fun for the students!


Blog issues resolved, PTC and book fair, the next field trip, next home project, and Fall Festival.

Dear parents,

There have been issues regarding pictures and files on the blog that were resolved over the weekend. You may have received older posts from the beginning of the year via your email (I received emails about posts on August 19th and 20th, then September 25th and October 8th) and I apologize if you did. During the restoration, the blog’s feedburner must have been tripped to send out what it thought were updates.

PTC is going on at the moment, along with the book fair. If you haven’t had a chance to sign up, or missed your slot today, there are still slots open Tuesday and Wednesday to sign up for ( If you haven’t been to the book fair, please check it out. It’s open from 1-7 pm and there are so many wonderful books out there for children. It’s great to see how much children still love their books!

The next field trip is coming up to Tracey Aviary on October 31st. The children will be receiving the permission slips on Tuesday, and, as usual, please try to get them signed and returned ASAP. We will be traveling by First School Bus, which is scheduled to leave at 8.20 am from the North Shore parking lot. The tours at Tracey Aviary begin at 9.30, so we need to be there in a timely manner. The students will need to have a sack lunch and wear appropriate clothing according to the weather. Even though this is Halloween, as per the school dress code, costumes are not allowed to be worn. Friday dress code with jeans is appropriate.

The cost of the trip is approximately $6/student and donations towards this cost are gratefully received. There will be an online payment link set up, if you wish to donate that way. Otherwise, donations can be made through the front office by cash or check. Here are the cover letter and permission slip, if they don’t make it back to you:

Tracey Aviary cover letterTracy Aviary permission slip

The children also received their next home project. This one is called, “All about the elements” and asks the  students to research an element and present their research in the form of either a poster OR a diorama. The handout suggests they do both. This is incorrect – they need to do one or the other, but no PowerPoints! Each student has received their element (please email me if they don’t know what it is and they forget to ask me) and this presentation is due November 10th.

The school Fall Festival is just around the corner on Friday 27th from 4-7 pm and MAPA (the school’s parents association) have asked the teachers to post the following information:

Join us for our Annual Fall Festival Friday, October 27th from 4-7pm. Watch for volunteer sign ups after the upcoming Parent Teacher Conferences. This is another great way to get those hours in :).
Don’t wait in line at Fall Festival!! Purchase tickets before the event and walk right in. We will be pre-selling Fall Festival tickets and wristbands at a discounted price on Monday, October 16th from 1-7pm at Parent Teacher Conferences in the school lobby. If you miss us that day, we will also host a drive-through ticket pre-sale on Monday October 23rd from 3-4pm. Drive through the East end of North Shore parking lot, pull up in your car and purchase your tickets! 
 Price Details
  • Wristbands – allow access to bounce houses, dunk tank, and climbing wall – provided by Custom Events
  • Tickets – allow access to all other events and goodies, including haunted house, root bier garden, cotton candy and more
 Pre-Sale Individual Prices:
1 wristband for $7 
4 tickets for $1 
 Pre-Sale Bundle Prices:
1 wristband and 16 tickets for $10
24 tickets for $5 
 Prices at the Door: 
1 wristband for $8
4 tickets for $1 
 Hope to see you all there! 
The festival is always enjoyable and a great way to support the school while having a fun family afternoon out!

Lastly, there is no school on Thursday and Friday.

Thanks and enjoy the break!


Field trip to American West Heritage Center, PTC, school work, blog problems

Dear parents,

On Thursday, the 4th graders will be going on their field trip to the American West Heritage Center near Logan. We will be transported by school bus and leaving from the North Shore parking lot at 8.30 am. Please make sure that your child is there by 8.15 so that we can leave promptly. When we are there, the children will undertake a series of different activities that are connected to the exploration and settlement of the area. For example, going to an early school, finding out about the first houses, building a teepee and visiting a trader’s hut. As we will be outside for the majority of the time, please make sure that the children are wearing good shoes, a warm jacket (it can get cold) and for this trip they may wear jeans  (Friday dress code). Also, please bring a sack lunch, there are no facilities to heat food where we eat. If you still haven’t returned the permission slips, please do before Wednesday.

Once again, parent teacher conferences begin on October 16th through 18th and run from 1.30 – 6.50 pm. The conference slots are 20 minutes in length and you can book one using the link:

At school the 6th graders have been working on medieval life, focusing on the differences between the daily life of a peasant and a knight or noble. They then went on to research The Plague, or Black Death, which decimated the population of Europe and led to many changes in society. They have started looking at the physical geography of the US, before moving onto political geography and the Westward Expansion.

The 5th graders have been studying Mesopotamia (an area of land between Iraq and Iran incorporating the Tigris and Euphrates rivers) and how from this area arose the first major civilizations. They have been looking at the gods and goddesses that were worshipped and constructing a ziggurat (a kind of proto-pyramid). Lastly, the daily life and what kind of jobs the people undertook – comparing those that are still familiar to us today, with those that are not (such as cup bearers and viziers compared to bakers and accountants). They then moved onto ancient Egypt, looking into tomb building, the pyramids, gods and goddesses and the cult of the afterlife.

The 4th graders have been studying Utah history, moving from the Native American tribes of Utah, to the first Spanish explorers and then onto the trappers and traders that preceded the pioneers. They have recently started studying global geography and will be moving on to using latitude and longitude with mapping skills.

In language arts we have been working on our Scholastic News Magazines and writing different opinion essays based on information found in the magazines. For example, should children be taught cursive writing in school and should we allow fidget spinners? We are also using Utah Compose, an online writing program, and using it to write essays on tropical rainforests – one of our biome projects for the year.

In math, the 6th graders have been looking at rates and ratios. The 5th graders: decimal place value, and order of operations. The 4th graders have been looking at place value and rounding.

Several of you have emailed me saying that the PDF link for the home project is no longer working. I apologize for this, but unfortunately, it seems to be affecting many of the teachers’ blogs. Hopefully, our IT staff can rectify it ASAP, and please email me if you need a copy.

I hope you all had a great weekend!

Many thanks – John