Sunday, September 30, 2012

Science Fair Website for Reference

Please Visit the Site Below For Ideas and Videos!

Please HELP us! Make some Dough!

Hi Parents,
Could you please help me? I would like to make salt dough to use during daily 5 for Spelling and then use it again an activity for Social Studies. I would need about 2 cups of dough for each child. If you could make just a few batches that would help me out. My own kids love making it so your not alone I will be joining in on the fun at home. I'm attaching a video so you can see how to make it. Thank you for supporting my CRAZY ideas. I'll give 10 points extra credit in math for measuring if the students help out. I will need the dough on October 9th. Thanks!

Friday, September 28, 2012


Our school Science Fair is December 6th. Projects are due in class by December 4th so we can share them before they go on display. Please encourage your child to participate if they express interest.

The IPads Have Arrived!

Thanks to the generous contributions made by our PTSO 10 IPads were purchased for the 4th grade students to share. As you can see we jumped in already to do some fun math with the SUSHI MONSTER app. Thank you for supporting us PTSO!

Science Fair Fun Begins!

     Today I began teaching the steps of the Scientific Method to prepare students for the upcoming Science Fair. The information below might give students some ideas of projects that might interest them. The projects aren't mandatory in 4th grade, however I highly encourage all of my students to do one for extra credit. They don't have to be entered into the Science Fair to be judged, that decision can be made by the students. To prepare students to do a project we will do a class project in class and display our data on a full size board. Next week there should be a link on the school site to our Science Fair packet with all of the information to explain each step in the process with deadlines.

Also a great site for ideas is:

From our lesson today in class:
The Happy Scientist (Science Fair Info.)

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Lunch Bunch Winners!

The students pictured were invited to a special lunch in our classroom for doing the extra credit Place Value project from September. I treated all of them to ice cream and some fun music. Congratulations!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Story Surgery!

Our class enjoyed operating on our essays today. We performed our surgery and I can happily say each story survived. The students all learned how to elaborate and add mini-stories to make their writing POP!
Congratulations to all of our surgeons.

Zoe is sharpening her skills!

Rosamaria working hard!

Would you want them to operate on you?

Monday, September 24, 2012

Toys In Space LIVE Photos

Class participation! Interacting with NASA instructor.

     Using film of real astronauts, our NASA teacher- Mr. Witherspoon- demonstrated science in space as part of our videoconference on Friday. Jumping in the shuttle cabin contrasted first hand with a student jumping rope in our classroom.

         Thinking like a scientist!  Making sure that the science notebook includes the notes on the videoconference.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Homework this Week!

New spelling words will come home in planner on Monday. We are skipping forward to Unit 3. The list is on Spelling City about half way down. The story is the Roadrunner Unit 3 Week 1. Don't forget the two activities that should be stapled to the tests due on Friday.

In addition there will be a math and reading extra credit assignment due in October, should the students take the challenge. I always encourage them to go the extra mile. Many of them have done so and the students who completed the Place Value project will be having lunch with  me in our classroom with a treat this week. I always applaud the extra effort on their part. The details we be in the Monday folder!

Have a fun weekend!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

News from our Room Parent!

Hello Parents and welcome to another great school year at Indialantic Elementary! I’d like to take this opportunity to share a few things with you as room mom.

I met with Mrs. Donovan and discussed the planned parties, events and classroom requests for the year. We will need many volunteers to help out with all of these. J We are so lucky to have a wonderful teacher who genuinely cares and loves making a difference. Each year we ask the teacher to make a list of their favorite things for gift ideas, etc. She has requested we give back to the children through the class wish list. A pay-it-forward idea! Excellent leadership if you ask me. A few items below are what is currently requested:

Class Wish List

·      8x10 or larger Class Rug (flame resistant, low profile)
·      Vacuum (New or Used)
·      Printer Ink (Brand: Cannon 240 or 241)
·      Tennis balls new or used (Qty of 108) Used as caps on chairs for sound barrier
·      Book - White Giraffe (r Qty of 18, rotational book between classes)

Our children have a full and exciting year to look forward to. There will be Fall Party, Winter Party, End of Year and other events throughout the year. If any parent has a special idea or craft that you think would be good to try with the class during these events, please let me know. Below is a list of upcoming events in the classroom:

Upcoming Events
·      PTO Sponsored Family Night Dinner “Movie on the Back Lawn” featuring Dolphin Tale, Thursday Sept 20th – Concession @ 6:45p / Movie @ 7:30p
·      Fall Party – Friday, October 26th 11:50 -12:50

Each upcoming event a request will be sent out to contribute by a monetary donation or a sign-up sheet for items that are needed for that particular parties or events. If there are items on the class list that you would like to help out with please notify me.

Communication about upcoming events will be sent home in folders and also placed on Mrs. Donovan’s blog.

I am looking forward to an exciting year as we watch our children learn and
grow. If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, please do not hesitate to email me. My email address is

Brandi Beckstein
Mrs Donovan’s Room Mom
PTO Chair

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Class Updates

Thank you to Jack and Nina's family. We have cornbread, lemonade, and warm honey ready for Friday. I can't wait!

Reminder-Science ball and cup project is due on Thursday in order to test them before our LIVE NASA web cast.

Please review The Raft story and the vocabulary before Friday's selection test. The CD was sent home yesterday.

Gardening Day Friday-Please send in gloves if you have some.

Study all of the Spelling words from the past week of Unit 1. We will have a review Spelling Test a week from this Friday. I will select 30 words from different lists and test them in class.

This Friday we will be pairing with our new Kindergarten neighbors for juice, cookies and a book.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Reading this Week!

     We are reading a selection story this week that has beautiful illustrations. Later this week I thought it would  be fun to give the students an amateur watercolor lesson so they can create pictures like the one in the book. I just noticed that my supply of watercolors is just about gone. I told the students if they had watercolors of their own they wanted to bring in that they could do so. I'll be sure if they're bringing in their own personal watercolors that they can use them for themselves. If your child doesn't have personal watercolors and you would like to purchase some they are very inexpensive and can be found at WalMart, CVS, Walgreens and even Publix. If you would like to purchase a set to donate to our class I would really appreciate that too.

     My other request is for some cornbread and honey. In the story the main character eats cornbread and honey. I thought it would be fun to do the same one morning this week. The easiest thing would be to make them in cupcake containers and I can heat the honey and drizzle it on. I would like to finish it off with some lemonade as well just like Nicky did with his Grandmother. Fun things like this help with children really look forward to the stories so I hope you can support us to make our book come to life this week. Just email me if you can donate.
     One last thing, if you would like to enjoy the story with your child I sent home CD's of our reading book today. Just pop it in your computer and look for The Raft. I hope you will enjoy the book as much as we have.

Gardening Day! Glove Reminder!

Bring gardening gloves to school on Friday, September 21 we will have another Gardening Day to finish our mulching of the Florida Native Garden. I'm looking for a parent that would be willing to pick up a load of pine nuggets and deliver them to school before Friday. I have money to pay for it, but could use help with the pick up. It will be about 20 bags of mulch that will need to be picked up. Please let me know if you can accommodate my request. Thanks so very much.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Homework the Week of September 17th

     The week of September 24th will be a reveiw of all of our spelling words for Unit 1. I won't be giving out new words this week. Simply go over the lists from the previous weeks.   
     In the Monday folder there will be a science at home activity due on Thursday, September 20th to prepare for a LIVE webcast with NASA.
     Thanks so much. Have a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Can You KEN KEN?

Hi Students,
Today we learned how to KEN KEN in math. Please share the link below with your parents so you can play along. You can also download the KEN KEN app. Have fun learning in math.Ken Ken Video.
After the video click on the home link of Ken Ken to practice away.
As we say in class...I'm Loving It!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Blue Impact Forms and other reminders!

Please return the blue impact forms that were sent home today. There is a school wide contest for the first class that brings them back. Our students want to win so please take a minute to fill this out and return it.

We are also collecting box tops for a pizza party. Please send them in to our class, they don't count towards the party if they're turned into the front office. Wish us luck!

Don't forget that t-shirt order forms and 8.00 are due by this Thursday. Some of our generous families turned in extra so please let me know if you need any help purchasing a shirt. Just send me a quick email and I'll take care of it. We worked on shirt designs today. I can't wait to see the finished products. you like my shirt? It's OWL good in our class! Hugs your kids tonight and sleep tight!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Extra Credit Reminder!

The MYSTERY extra credit project is due on Tuesday, September 11. Please remind your children to work on it over the weekend if they were taking the Enrichment challenge.

This Week In Our Class!

We had two exciting events this week!  First of all, Bill DeLuccia an Indialantic parent, spoke to our 4th grade classes on the topic of Native and Invasive Plants. He included an interesting description of the Florida Aquifer and the way that our water supply filters down from the Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia. He explained the importance of native plants to migrating birds like the small warbler that migrates from Central America, depending on the berries from our native trees for their food supply.

Later, an exciting writing activity ... again students from both classes gathered to transform "Plain Polly" and "Mediocre Mike" who were badly in need of interesting details. Lots of creative ideas from our students.
Every student had a turn adding a detail to the picture.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Class T-Shirts Order

I know that I sent home a request for white T-Shirts today, but I changed my mind. Wow...A girl can do that right? I was on Pinterest looking for ideas and found an affordable t-shirt idea that will allow the kids to make shirts with self portraits. They are priced at $8.00 including shipping and printing which will save us a ton. Our shirts last year cost us around $10.00 per child. Given the savings and the personalized touch of their own art work I will send home order forms in the next few days. You can save yourself a trip to Target now for that white t-shirt. Keep an eye out for the t-shirt information. Now that I've spent hours on Pinterest it's time to go to bed! Sleep tight!

Check the Monday Folders!

Please be sure to check the Monday folders for additional spelling homework that will be due each week as well as my September newsletter. If you have any questions please feel free to email me. Have a happy week!

Monday, September 3, 2012

September News

September news will be coming home in the Monday folder on Tuesday due to the holiday.

Old cell phones, keyboards, large headphones, and scrabble games needed!

I'm looking for old cell phones and computer keyboards for activities for Daily 5. If you have any of these items and could donate them to our class I would appreciate it.