Center Happenings 2018-2019

Most Day 3 and 4 

4th Grade Tier Time 

  Mrs. Pilarski meets with 25 students 2-3 days per week to focus on ELA enrichment.  

Completed Unit: 

     Mrs. Pilarski and her students read Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett and collected clues to solve the mystery.  Pentominoes are a key focus in the novel.  Along with reading and gather clues, the students solved a variety of pentomino combinations. Once the novel was finished, students solved a mystery on their own.  

Current Unit: 

     At the start of second semester, we began our Tall Tale Unit.  The students read a variety of tall tales and legends. They compared and contrasted tall tales to legends. They learned about a figurative language. Students are now in the process of using research on a chosen state to create their own tall tales.

2nd Grade Tier Time 

    Mrs. Pilarski meets with approx. 20 students 2-3 days per week to focus on ELA enrichment.


Current Unit: 

     At the start of second semester, we began our Fairy Tale Unit. The students and I have read a variety of classic fairy tales and fractured fairy tales. The students have been comparing the original tales to the fractured tales.  They have been learning about inside and outside character traits, setting, plot, beginning, middle, end, and description.  They will also learn about dialog.  Students will end the unit by writing their own fractured fairy tales.

Read-a-loud with Mrs. Schorr's and

Mrs. Haupt's students

    2-3 times a week, Mrs. Pilarski meets with Mrs. Schorr's student for fiction and non-fiction 

read-a-louds. After the read-a-loud, students work on literacy skills through artwork.  


  Books Read 


     * Fletcher and the Falling Leaves by Julia Rawlinson

     *Click, Clack, Moo: Cows that Type by Doreen Cronin

     *Edwina, the Dinosaur Who Didn't Know She      

     was Extinct by Mo Willems 

     * The Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman

     * The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson

     * Snowflake Bentley by Jacqueline 


     * Tyrannosaurus Rex by Wil Mara


Library and Reading Lessons with Mrs. Haupt's ELL Students

Several times a month Mrs. Haupt and I team up to teach lessons together.  So far this year, we have collaborated on:


    Non-fiction text features

    Note taking using biographies 

1st Grade Tier Time 

  Mrs. Pilarski meets with approx. 20 students 2-3 days per week to focus on ELA enrichment.  

Current Unit: 

At the start of second semester, we began our Judy Moody Unit.  In pairs or individually, students are reading Judy Moody Was In a Mood by Megan McDonald.  Students work together to answer comprehension questions, using examples from the novel.  

     Students also completed a small research project on a cat or a dog.  Using the notes they took, they wrote a letter convincing the grown-ups in their lives to allow them to get the cat or dog they researched.


The above are pictures created by Mrs. Schorr's and Mrs. Haupt's students illustrating the characters and setting of Click, Clack, Moo: Cows that Type by Doreen Cronin.
The artwork to the left was created by Mrs. Schorr's students.  They recreated the sequence of the story Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman

Monthly Events

 Author of the Month with 1st Grade

    Mrs. Pilarski visits each 1st grade class once a month  to present author study lessons.  During the lesson  students:

   * learn a little information about the author of the  month.

   * are introduced to many of the books written by the  author.

   * hear a story written by the author.

   * complete a literacy activity based on the story read  to the class.

   Authors and Books by Month

     September: The Naked Mole Rat by Mo Willems

     October: Click, Clack, Boo by Doreen Cronin

     November: Owen by Kevin Henkes 


***Due to the addition of 1st and 2nd grade tier time, Author of the Month has been placed on hold. 

  Monthly Theme Lessons with 3rd Grade

      Mrs. Pilarski visits a few of the 3rd grade classes  once a month or so to teach lessons on theme in literature.  The first story we read was Dan Santat's The Adventures  of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend. The themes our  students were able to identify and support with events  from the story were: Friendship, Bravery, Perseverance,  and Kindness.

   November's story is Red: A Crayon's Story by Michael  Hall.  Looking forward to our students' insight into the  main lesson of the book. 

Our 1st grade students created their own unique outfits for their naked mole rats, after reading The Naked Mole Rat by Mo Willems.

Other Collaborative Lessons

 Author Study with 3rd Grade Tier Time

    Mrs. Pilarski has been team teaching with Mrs. Freese  during 3rd grade tier time.  Several days over the past  few weeks, Mrs. Pilarski has visited Mrs. Freese's tier  time group to help teach lessons on Tomie dePaola.  Students learned a little about Mr. de Paola's life. In  small groups, students' read a few Strega Nona stories  and completed literacy activities for the stories.  Next, they will learn about autobiographies and memoirs.  They will read one of the memoirs in the Tomie dePaola series 26 Fairmont Avenue. They will discuss why they think he chose these particular stories to tell about his life. Students will then decide what they would include in their own memoir.