Friday, November 9, 2012

Memorial Students Rock the Vote...and Demonstrate Respect & Responsibility

Pre schoolers await their turn to vote for Cartoon
Character of the Year at our Mock Election on Nov 2nd.
 Candidates were Dora the Explorer and Spongebob Squarepants.

Parent volunteer Maria Schmidt hands out ballots to student voters.
Last Friday, November 2nd, Memorial Students in grades Pre K through Grade 5 came out to vote!  Pre schoolers voted for Cartoon Character of the Year.   The two primary candidates, SpongeBob Squarepants and Dora the Explorer had been nominated by Pre K students.  SpongeBob came out ahead with 11 votes vs. Dora's 5 votes.

Emerson Kahle completes a ballot
at the Mock Presidential Election.
The Presidential Election was voted on by Kindergartners through Grade 5 students \
and the ballot was limited to the two primary candidates - Democrat Barack

Obama and Republican Mitt Romney. Students spent time discussing the presidential election in the school library in the weeks leading up to the election -  as well as the congressional and Senate runs in some classrooms.  Students were engaged in the process and many watched the televised debates and discussed the pros and cons of the candidates with their family members.

Trip Graves votes in an official voting booth
borrowed from Town Hall.
Students also spent time in the school library in recent weeks learning about former Presidents of the United States.  A definite favorite has been William Taft, famous for getting stuck in the White House bathtub because he has been our country's largest president!

Awareness of the imporance of voting and a lesson on respecting differing opinions was the goal and Memorial students seemed to have definitely gotten the message!  In the end, Obama received 278 Memorial votes to Romney's 185 votes....

Thursday, November 8, 2012

More iPads-Thank you Spaulding Education

Thank You to Spaulding Education Fund for the new 10 iPads that will be added to the current 20 iPads housed in the school library. The 30 iPads will be very helpful with Ms.Silag's library curriculum especially in classes with 21 or more students.  In addition to supporting library research programs and our information literacy curriculum, the iPads will be available for sign out by classroom teachers for small group activities.  Students can use the iPads to access apps, online databases and the school library catalog.  We REALLY appreciate the ongoing support of Spaulding and its contributors!

- Ms. Silag & Mrs. Seymour

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

New Addition to Specialists Family!

Congratulations to Technology Teacher Mrs. Jenna Seymour and her husband J.  They welcomed a baby boy, Taylor James Seymour, to their family yesterday!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Internet Safety Skills

Interent Safety is an important topic at each grade level. Throughout the year Internet Safety skills are taught at each grade level and are continually reviewed. Stay tuned for projects that highlight how our students demonstrate their knowledge of safe and responsible Internet use.

Technology Highlights

We have had a great start in Technology Class this year. Below find one project highlight of each grade level! There are so many more projects to highlight throughout the year so be sure to check back to see what is going on in Technology!

Grade 5
Ancient Civilizations Project
During this interdisciplinary unit between Library, Technology and the classroom, students use World Book Online, iPad apps and books to hunt for answers to questions about the Aztec, Inca and Maya Civilizations. (See post below)

Grade 4
Web Detectives
The 4th graders put on their detective hats for this Internet Safety Webquest.
The Mission: Investigate Internet Safety by collecting answers to various clues on their detective sheet. While following the "clues", students will gain Net Smartz to make them safe, responsible Internet users.

Grade 3
Yahtzee Spreadsheets
Students in 3rd grade learned how to play Yahtzee and record score data on their data sheets. They then were introduced to Microsoft Excel and learned how to create an electronic spreadsheet using their collected data. They learned basic formatting, functions, how to create a graph of their collected data.

Grade 2
Butterflies to Bones
To enhance the classroom science curriculum students honed their Kidpix skills in labeling Caterpillars and Butterflies. They worked with partners to use an online picture dictionary to find answers to questions about the life cycle of Butterflies. They then took their online searching skills to a new level by moving between the Internet and Microsoft Word to locate information to enhance their knowledge about bones.

Grade 1
Students in grade 1 honed their Kidpix skills through multiple lessons that introduce them to new drawing and creation tools that allow them to create projects such as Scary/Funny Faces. Students in Grade 1 are also introduced to basic Internet Safety rules that are continually reinforced throughout the year.

Learning the Basics
Kindergartners are learning the basic skills of using drawing/creation applications such as Kidpix and Tux Paint. They are learning how to access the building server to find their classroom "job" and basic functions such as printing and quitting.

~Mrs. Seymour

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


All members of the 4th Grade Book Club, please note that we decided to change the November Book from SKELLIG by David Almond to HOMELESS BIRD by Gloria Whelan!!  We will NOT be reading SKELLIG in the 4th Grade Book Club.  Sorry for any inconvenience...the descriptions were deemed just a tad too creepy for some and we don't want anyone having nightmares as they read their Book Club book...even if it is Hallween time!

Friday, October 12, 2012

¡Feliz otoño! Happy Autumn!

Happy Autumn!  ¡Feliz otoño!

Spanish classes are in full swing and every grade level has started a new unit.  Please visit my Spanish class blog for an update on our October class activities. 

Señora Carrancho

Thursday, October 11, 2012

5th Graders Compete!

Bridget T. and partner Thomas B. from Ms. Machain's class work together
searching for answers about Inca rulers during the Ancient Civilization Scavenger
Hunt in Library and Technology classes. The project will run
through mid October.
Fifth graders in Technology and Library classes recently kicked off an Ancient Civilization Scavenger Hunt!  Students are paired in teams of two and are using multiple online resources on the iPads and PCs as well as good old fashioned books to answer questions about ancient civilizations of the Americas - specifically Inca, Maya and Aztec civilizations.  Teams have to search for answers to questions which are worth 4 to 6 points.  Teams can collect up to 100 points based on correct answers, correct spelling and citation of all sources.  Teams who reach 100 will choose from an array of FABULOUS prizes provided by Mrs. Seymour and Ms. Silag.  The project complements the Ancient Civilization unit taught in the 5th grade Social Studies curriculum. 

Elizabeth and partner Hannah debate what the correct answer is to an Ancient Civ. Scavenger Hunt question as they use iPad apps and non-fiction books to research Mayan civilization.

                                Students make themselves comfortable as they spread out in the school library
                           and the technology lab while they do their work.

Friday, September 28, 2012



I am happy to host 3 separate book clubs for our 3rd, 4th and 5th graders this year!  Many, many students have signed up to "try out" the book clubs and while I expect that several will decide a book club is not the right venue for them to share their love of books, a core group will start to form and enjoy the Book Club during their lunch period one Tuesday a week.  BTW, if your child has signed up for Book Club and ultimately decides its not for them, please recognize that opting out is a completely appropriate decision for some.  One of the beauties I have found in hosting the lunch book clubs is that while many enthusiastic students sign up, at the end of the day several want, even need, to get their run-around, physical activity time during recess....yet these kids will often take the Book Club Title List and go ahead and read the books on their own.  That is a win-win! They are reading, doing it on their own time:) Please celebrate that! While I have repeatedly told my own children not to "quit" anything, I have assured all 3rd, 4th and 5th graders that they need to do what works for them...not what their friends, parents or even I want them to do. 

With that said, I look forward to talking about the funny, inventive, intriguing NOT TALKING by Andrew Clements with 3rd graders and the classic THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH by Juster Norton during the month of October.  The Book Titles and Meeting Dates will be posted here on the sidebar for easy reference.  Please encourage (and help) your child reserve Book Club titles via the Manchester Public Library.  Unfortunately, the school library doesn't have the funding (or the space!) to house multiple copies of most titles but the MVLC can access dozens of copies in a timely fashion!

Happy Reading!

- Ms. Silag, Memorial School Library Teacher

Thursday, September 20, 2012

PTO fundraiser starting

Art Room News
From Mrs. Yutkins

Look what's Coming!

Our Products

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Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Las noticias del programa : Español

¡Hola!  As a new teacher to the Manchester-Essex Regional School District, I’m very excited to join the Essex Elementary and Manchester Memorial Elementary schools as the Spanish and French teacher.  I’ve worked as a Foreign Language teacher for nearly a decade, but this is my first chance to work with elementary students, so I’m very excited about the new challenge.

Second through fourth grade classes have Spanish once a week.  We will continue to learn the basics of Spanish while focusing on practicing these basics in every day conversation.  We will focus on practicing with many small in-class projects, some written and some spoken.  In addition to language and conversation, culture and history will be discussed in class, with interdisciplinary connections made whenever possible. 

In fifth grade the students will have a more intense experience with classes twice a week.  As in the past, the first half of the year will be Spanish and the second half will be French.  The dominant language of the classroom will be whichever language we are studying.  Whenever possible, we will try to speak in Spanish and later in the year, French.   

Once I get more settled into a routine here at MERSD, hopefully early October, I will be posting foreign language links and class updates on my website:


I’m very excited to be on board here at MERSD and am looking forward to a great school year!