Ms. Poirier's Class

Norman E. Day School

Happy Summer!


What an  whirlwind end to the school year!  Today, I got a chance to meet my upcoming fourth grade class and my current students got to meet their 5th grade teachers. 

My new 4th graders got to meet me in our classroom (one that will be brand new to me) and ask all the questions they had about 4th grade.  I hope being able to see the space, see their classmates, and meet me will help make their 4th grade transition a smooth one. Like I told the kids today, practice your multiplication facts and read a few great books this summer.  We will be doing a project on our summer reading at the very beginning of the school year…But let’s not get ahead of ourselves!  We all have summer vacation first; Let’s not wish away all the time we have to relax, have fun, and spend time with our families.  This summer, I plan to go to the beach, read a ton of books, and just enjoy spending some stress free time with my family. Make sure you check back around the middle of August.  Around that time I will transition the blog to the new school year, post our welcome letter, ask you what your favorite part of vacation was, and give you a list of a few suggested items you may want to have for 4th grade.   Until then, enjoy your time off!

To my outgoing 4th…and soon-to-be 5th graders: What a year!  We have had great days, not-so-great days, and everything in between. We’ve covered a staggering amount of stuff–sometimes it was fun, sometimes it was just necessary.  But, I hope you leave 4th grade feeling like you are a stronger student than when you came in.  I hope you made some good friends and have great memories of our time together.  I know I certainly do.  As you head to 5th grade, remember to hold the door for each other, read a ton of books, and remember that you CAN do the math…even when you think you can’t.  Come back and visit when you’re 5th graders and make sure to say hello when you see me in the hall next year.  I love you all!

Ms. Poirier

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Greek Plays


As we dissected Greek Plays this spring, we began planning and practicing to pull off a couple of mini Greek plays.  Below are our presentations of The Trojan Horse and Orpheus and Eurydice.  The blocking, props, and costumes are all the invention and creation of the actors.  I assisted with supplies and suggestions when asked but the kids really did all the work on this one.  Enjoy! (And have a chuckle at the toilet paper togas beginning to disintegrate. I am proud to have found a way to repurpose the left over t.p. from our mummy wrapping at the Halloween party!)

Cast of The Trojan Horse

  • Chorus – Molly & Eesha
  • Prince/Trojan 1 – Akshath
  • Duke/Trojan 2 – Isabella
  • King/Greek 3 – Katherine
  • Paris/Greek 2 – Nikhil
  • Helen – Himani
  • King Menelaus/Trojan 3 – Lee
  • Odysseus – Aditya
  • Greek 1 – A.J.

Cast of Orpheus & Eurydice

  • Chorus – Awab & Sneha
  • Orpheus – Afifa
  • Apollo/Cerberus 1 – Maruthi
  • Eurydice – Erin
  • Aristheus/Cerberus 2 – Adi
  • Chyron – Pranav
  • Cerberus 3/Persephone – Anvita
  • Hades – Derek




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Animal Projects!


As a whole, our class did a fabulous job on the animal research assignment.  I am so impressed by the thorough research, the effort in writing, and the high quality level of the final products!  The students of 115 took this assignment very seriously and it shows!  For a look through our animal presentations, see our science page.  Presentations or pictures of projects will be posted as they are presented in class.  Enjoy!

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Just Another Day at the Zoo…


Perfect weather and well-behaved students made for an excellent zoo trip!  Everyone was all smiles, as you can see by the collection of pictures below!  Thank you to Mrs. Sawyer and Mrs. Cassidy for joining us for the day.  Now, time for a nap…

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Summer Reading Program!


Today the kids were introduced to the “Libraries Rock!” summer reading program offered through the J.V. Fletcher Library, here in Westford.  The library program is a great way to get reluctant readers to read and avid readers to stay involved in a community of readers!  The library has great incentives and book lists to keep everyone reading all summer!  See the Fletcher Library site for more info! (The booklist offered on the Fletcher Library site is a school based list.  Unfortunately, it did not transfer to the school system’s new website when the new site rolled out this week. The webmaster has been made aware and is working to repost the book lists very soon! Stay tuned)

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Our Narratives!


Here is the book of narratives written by the students of 115! Give it a read!

115 Short Stories!

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What. A. Day!


Not in 15 years of teaching have my students surprised me so much and brought me to genuine tears, as they did today.  I knew something was up (lots more whispering this week!) but I never imagined the lengths they would go to to make me feel so special on my birthday! 19 little folks marched in singing Happy Birthday carrying balloons, an amazing book of stories, drawings, and cards, flowers, a crown and necklace, and some Ford-original brownie balls!  They wanted me to look at the cards immediately but I truly couldn’t see through my tears.  I am so blown away by their generosity and their spirit.  Today has left me speechless and is truly one of the most remarkable birthdays I have had.  Love and hugs to all of my students who made me feel like the luckiest lady around today. xo.

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Field Day!


What a great day! As you will see by the pictures below, there were lots of smiles and scowls of concentration and determination.  Great teamwork and sportsmanship from all.  I bet many will sleep as well as I will!

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May Update


MCAS – ELA MCAS is behind us!  Next week, we will have Math MCAS testing on Tuesday(5/8) and Friday (5/11) and then we will be done! Again, students are well prepared for this test.  In school, we try not to treat this day as much different than the others.  Making a big deal out of these exams needlessly increases stress for those anxiety-prone. The tests are a small part of what a child can do on a particular day and at a specific time.  They are not the picture of the whole child.  That said, our curriculum is rigorous and covers the material to be found upon the MCAS; if they’ve been in school and have been relatively successful, they should not encounter any problems.

Talent Showcase – On Friday night is the first Day School Talent Showcase! Day School students, including 2 of our classmates will be showing their art work and performing on stage!  Tickets are $5 each and can be purchased hereTickets will not be sold at the door!

Field Day – Field Day is fast approaching.  This annual extravaganza, organized by Mrs. Claycomb would not take place without an army of volunteers.  If you can volunteer your time for all or a portion of the day, please consider doing so.  No athletic ability required! 😉  Volunteer here!

The Southwick Zoo – Speaking of volunteers, the 4th grade is scheduled to go to the Southwick Zoo on Monday, June 4. While permission slips have yet to go home, I wanted to put the idea out there.  I will need 2 parent chaperones for the zoo.  Chaperones must have fulfilled the CORI and fingerprinting requirements.  While CORI verification is closed for the year, fingerprinting is not.  If you haven’t been fingerprinted and want to be considered for the zoo, please do so ASAP! More information about the zoo and chaperones will be out sometime next week.

Distance Learning – The second part (writing portion) of the 4th grade Distance Learning Initiative is due on Friday, May 18.  I was so impressed with the level of research and dedication by the students to the project.  I am excited to see the final products and hear about the fascinating adaptations of all these animals!

Bean Jar – We had been having “a bit” of trouble being quiet in the hallways and quiet enough to hear bu announcements during dismissal.  Thus, we have resurrected the Bean Jar!  Each time we walk in the halls or maintain an appropriate volume during dismissal, scoops of beans will be added to the jar.  Once the jar is full, the class will be voting on a prize such as a pajama day, a movie, extra recess, etc.  Ask your child about the class’ progress and stay tuned for the full Bean Jar announcement.  The change on the last few days has been awesome!

Socially Conscious – This week, we have had the opportunity to tackle articles outlining various issues facing folks around the globe.  Yesterday we read about the conditions and lack of resources for schools at a refugee camp in Kakuma, Kenya.  Today we read about how plastics are polluting the environment in a few different ways.  It is my hope that after looking at a few of these issues, the kids will be able to pick a cause to dedicate a bit of time and energy.  A lesson in citizenship, if you will.  Please ask your student to tell you about some of the surprising facts they have learned!



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April Update


Happy Spring!

Distance Learning Initiative – The 4th grader’s have received their Distance Learning information.  In our class, the students will be researching an animal of their choice!  I couldn’t believe the excitement around the class when I introduced this today; I expect great things with this enthusiasm!  All information found for this at-home project (mostly) can be found to the right on our Distance Learning Project page.  The students are also coming home with a packet outlining the important point and pieces.  Please contact me with any questions, comments, or concerns.  I will post relevant questions on the blog so all families hear the conversation surrounding the project.

MCAS – The 4th graders are scheduled to take the ELA MCAS on Tuesday, April 24 and Friday, April 27.  The kids are well-prepared and should do just fine.  In class, we treat this as any other day as making a bigger deal just increases anxiety, which helps no one.  Truly, they should get a good night’s sleep and eat a healthy breakfast, because these are always important, but the MCAS is nothing for any of these students to lose sleep over.  They will all put their best work forward and then we will continue on with the rest of the school day!

Wish List – Paper towels, tissues, and safe disinfectant spray or wipes (sorry, not Clorox or Lysol due to chemicals banned by the district) are always welcome and needed!  Unfortunately, hand sanitizer like Purel is not allowed…we have a wall mounted dispenser in the class for this purpose.

Wingmasters – On March 17, Jim Parks, a grade level favorite, came in to introduce us to the Wingmasters!  Jim is a wildlife rehabilitator working specifically with birds of prey.  On hand to show the students were the barred owl, a snowy owl, 2  screech owls, and a common kestrel falcon. He talked adaptations, habitat, diet, etc.  The students were entranced!  Thank you to the PTO for providing this awesome presentation! (Below are the very interested faces of the audience and Mr. Parks with a barred owl.)

Math – Wrapping up Unit 6 today and Monday!  Onto Unit 7 on Tuesday.  Unit 7 will cover multiplication of fractions (whole number x fraction only) extensive division, algebraic patterns, in depth word problems, among other things.  The Math MCAS dates for the 4th grade at Day are Tuesday, May 8 and Friday, May 11.

Writing – We are plugging away and nearly wrapping up our narratives.  I expect to send home finished copies just after vacation.  We move into persuasive writing next; be ready for your kids to convince you that they should have a later bedtime, a dog, or an iphone! 😉

Literacy – Literacy continues with guided groups and literature circles.  In class we are currently immersed in Greek Myths, which is always a crowd favorite.  Stay tuned for “stage productions” of our favorite myths!  This week we began our 2nd round of literature circles with a few changes.  Rather than biweekly, the students will be meeting weekly about their book.  This means that there will be less role sheets, but more reading each week.  The kids seemed genuinely excited about their book choices.  Literature Circles will be held each Wednesday, thus reading and role sheets will be due each Wednesday.  Role Sheets are available in class and on the Literature Circle page, if needed.

Content – We are moving into the Midwest section of the United States and are going to wrap up energy with electricity and sources of energy (finally!).  A Southeast Exam is coming home today.  The grade report is attached to the back.  This exam was conducted in parts.  We practiced using our resources to find answers and wrote the Trail of Tears essay together to practice our paragraph writing. Your children were immersed in the content when we covered it in class.  A review of the material and practice finding answers to many of the trivia-like questions was a perfect way to use their researching skills!


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