Kindergarten is currently working on Months vocabulary for Spanish. First grade is also doing months, but they are doing more advanced work with the vocabulary. Second grade has begun a unit about clothing items and they are doing lots of visual activities with their new words. Third and Fourth grades have finished their math unit and are beginning to work on clothing words. Fifth grade recently turned in an end of unit project about telling time. That project will take the place of a test score for the unit. Their next focus will be items in their room. Sixth grade has also started work on vocabulary for items in their room. Seventh grade is finally getting ready to test over the 3 verbs and pronouns they have been studying for quite some time. They have also learned how to do definite vs. indefinite articles (the vs. a/an/some). Eighth grade has finished their clothing and colors review unit with a project taking the place of a test. Scores for that project are on PowerSchool. They are currently preparing to take the Dowling Placement test for Spanish next week on May 2. Ms. Campbell will administer the test during her language class so that they have as much time to study as possible. 6th grade religion is testing today over Chapter 11 and will likely cover 2 more chapters before the end of the school year. Also, 6th grade will be planning one more Mass during the last week of school. National Junior Honor Society students did well with their popcorn fundraiser in April and are doing their last service project for this year tomorrow. They will be going to Parkridge Nursing Home in Pleasant Hill to play BINGO with residents from 4-5pm.
Spring has sprung! Here's what's new for Spanish, 6th religion, and NJHS. Kindergarten is getting ready to test tomorrow over numbers 1-10 and then they will start a unit over months of the year. 1st grade is finishing up their unit over numbers 1-19 and then they will move on to months also. 2nd grade has been working on days and months in addition to numbers. They will soon be putting all of these pieces together to tell a complete date in Spanish. For example: Today is Wednesday, the 30th of March. 3rd grade is getting ready to test over their subtraction unit using numbers through 30. 4th grade is getting ready to test over their multiplication unit using numbers through 30. 5th grade has been working on telling time and will be asked to complete a unit project instead of a test at the end of that unit. 6th grade Spanish is working on verb phrases with household tasks. They are just getting started with verb conjugation using the verbs for "to have to" and "going to" describing their obligations. 7th grade continues to plug away at conjugating the verbs for "to have", "to need", and "to want." 7th grade did not meet much during the month of March due to preparations for Living Stations of the Cross, but should be getting back on track soon. 8th grade has been reviewing noun-adjective agreement using colors and clothing vocabulary. They will soon be making sentences employing these skills and their unit assessment will be a project. 6th grade religion students worked very hard to put on the Living Last Supper on Holy Thursday and did a wonderful job! I took points for a test grade and everyone got 100% for their efforts. Well done 6th grade! Now, its back to our text for Chapter 10. National Junior Honor Society has 2 more meetings left this Spring: April 6 and April 20. We will discuss how to increase popcorn sales for the April and May sales coming up and prepare for our last project of the year. This project will be a repeat from last year at the students' request. We will be visiting Parkridge Nursing Home in Pleasant Hill to play BINGO with residents on April 29th at 4p.m.
Kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grade Spanish These three grade levels have recently begun a calendar unit with varying degrees of difficulty. Kindergarten is learning to identify numbers 1-10 spelled out in Spanish, while 1st grade is adding 11-20 to their repertoire. 2nd grade is working on 20-30 and will eventually use those numbers with days and months to tell the date. 3rd and 4th grade Spanish These two grade levels are using their background knowledge of Spanish numbers to do some math! 3rd grade is doing subtraction and 4th grade is doing multiplication. Students have already completed many activities to help them study any numbers that escaped their memory since last year and will also be forming their own math problems using Spanish numbers spelled out in word format. 5th grade Spanish This class is also using numbers, but they will soon be using them to tell time in Spanish. Its such a joy to see students applying their knowledge to accomplish a larger task. 6th grade Spanish The sixth graders are embarking on a unit that focuses on verbs. They will be using the verbs to talk about things they have just done, things they have to do, and things they are going to do in the near future. 6th grade Religion As we go through the season of Lent, students are spending some time each Monday in class to practice for the Living Last Supper. This presentation, based on the painting by Leonardo DeVinci, will be on March 24th in the Church. Each student has a speaking role and must memorize their part. Alongside that, we have begun Chapter 9 which talks about the prophets from the Old Testament and the messages they delivered to God's people. 7th grade Spanish Students are beginning their study of singular personal pronouns (I, you, he, she, etc) and 3 Spanish verbs: to have, to need, and to want. This unit serves as an introduction to verb conjugation which will be the core of 8th grade Spanish. They will use the verbs to talk about items that someone has, needs, or wants. 8th grade Spanish Having finished present tense regular verb conjugations, the eighth grade is now reviewing clothing and color vocabulary to talk about what someone is wearing. They most recently followed directions in Spanish to color characters on a gameboard resembling "Guess Who." Their goal with this task was to play the game with a partner and figure out their secret character by asking questions about what the character was wearing and what color it was. NJHS Due to all the craziness that February has brought, we have not met lately but will meet again on March 2. Popcorn will continue to be sold once per month for the next three months as a fundraiser. Thank you for your continued support of National Junior Honor Society service projects.
As we wait for the birth of our savior, here's what's happening in Spanish classes, 6th grade religion, and NJHS.... K-2 Spanish These grade levels are in various stages of their food unit. Their studies range from learning the words for foods to asking and answering questions about if they like the food or not. 3-4 Spanish These grade levels have recently tested over their family unit. Tests went well and we are ready to move on to a new unit including verbs. All verbs for our next unit will be things that students may like or not like to do and they'll learn how to express their preferences in Spanish. 5 Spanish This class is almost to the end of their clothing unit. We have a quiz coming up this Friday, December 4 and will be starting a project next week to finish the unit. 6 Spanish Students are almost to the end of a unit over describing their families. They will be starting a project soon in place of a unit test. 7 Spanish Students have been working on asking and answering questions about someone's age. There will be a quiz this Friday over this content and then we'll start working on asking and answering where someone is from. 8 Spanish Students have spent the last 5 classes working on a new set of verb infinitives. There will be a quiz this Friday over the verbs. We'll review how to comjugate -ar verbs and then learn how to conjugate -er and -ir verbs. All verbs in Spanish fall into one of these 3 categories. 6 Religion Students tested over Chapter 5 just before Thanksgiving break. We are currently in the middle of Chapter 6 which talks about the 10 commandments and Jesus' new law of love that we are called to follow. When we finish Chapter 6, there will be a small project about the Jewish Passover before we leave for Christmas break. NJHS At our two November meetings, students wrote letters and packed small care packages for military troops. Items will be sent to an organization called Operation Gratitude which acts as a "middle man" to get items to where they are needed most. Also, we are going to start a monthly popcorn fundraiser within the building! Our first popcorn sale will be next Friday, December 11. More information to come soon!
Spanish Kindergarten - Students recently took their test over the 8 color words we have been working so hard on and they did very well. Each unit, your student will have a booklet that they keep their work on and it will come home at the end of the unit. The booklet for our color unit is blue and it should be coming home this week with everything they have done including their test. Our next unit will be over school supply words. 1st and 2nd Grades - Students have finished their first unit which was a combination of colors and supplies vocabulary. We reviewed old words and added some new ones. Booklets with their work were sent home a couple weeks ago. We are now working on fruits and vegetables. The unit will include learning how to answer the question "Do you like_____?" in Spanish. 3rd and 4th Grades - Students continue to start each class with a partner flashcard activity for 3 minutes. It keeps going a little more smoothly each week. We tested a couple weeks ago over supplies and the verb "tener" which means "to have." We are currently working on family members and adjectives with a goal of making sentences to describe family members. 5th Grade - Students continue to do a journal entry at the beginning of each class including the date and the weather for the day. I will keep collecting these journals at the end of the month for completion points. Students have taken their test over supplies and colors words. They did very well! We have begun our next unit of study which is over clothing. The skill of noun-adjective agreement using Spanish grammar will be taught in this unit which can sometimes be challenging. We'll do lots of practice! 6th Grade - Students continue to do a journal entry at the beginning of each class including the date and the weather for the day. I will keep collecting these journals at the end of the month for completion points. Students are just now preparing for their first unit test over telling time and classes vocabulary. We have done lots of in class practice. All students should spend some time studying for the test which will be Monday, Nov 2. 7th Grade - Students continue to do a journal entry at the beginning of each class including the date and the weather for the day. I will keep collecting these journals at the end of the month for completion points. Students are just now preparing for their first unit test over greetings, introductions, and feelings. Since 7th grade has class the last period of the day, their test will be Friday, Nov 6 due to Halloween parties this Friday and a prayer service next Monday. Following the test, their next unit will be much shorter and will focus on asking answering questions about how old someone is and where they are from. 8th Grade - Students continue to do a journal entry at the beginning of each class including the date and the weather for the day. I will keep collecting these journals at the end of the month for completion points. Students just had their first unit test this past Monday, Oct 26. Grades will be posted soon. This unit focused on learning Spanish pronouns, 17 infinitive verbs, and how to conjugate those verbs. Verb conjugation is a key skill taught in high school Spanish 1. Our next unit will be shorter and will focus on telling time with a quick review of numbers through 30. Students made cards in class recently that they can use to study their numbers at home. 6th Religion - We have picked up the pace a little bit since the beginning of the year and are currently in the middle of chapter 4 of the textbook. This chapter, as well as chapters 5 and 6, will focus on the theme of the Trinity. Students will continue to have 1-2 homework assignments per chapter followed by a chapter test. Each chapter is designed to be taught in about 5 days so your student can expect a test about every 6-7 class periods including review time. National Junior Honor Society (NJHS) - Our meetings in November are on the 4th and the 18th after school until 4. We are looking into doing a popcorn sale each month as an ongoing fundraiser. Students are hoping to solicit parent help with preparing the popcorn during the school day on Fridays, but if this isn't possible I am more than happy to assist with this on Wednesdays instead. If any NJHS parent is interested in assisting with this project on either Wednesdays OR Fridays, please let me know.
Welcome back and happy fall to everyone! Below are some details about what is happening in Spanish classes. Also, I am teaching 6th religion this year so look for that information as well. Kindergarten Spanish - Students have learned how to say the sign of the cross in Spanish and work on days of the week at the beginning of each class on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Our main focus is on color words. Students work on a new color each week. They have learned 5 so far including red, blue, yellow, green, and orange. We'll add purple, black, and white before doing an assessment. 1st and 2nd Spanish - Students do prayer and calendar to start each class period on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Our focus is on colors AND school supplies vocabulary to start the year. So far, students have finished reviewing color words they were taught last year and have added one or two new colors. We're now doing supplies words and will have an assessment over all words when those are finished. 3rd and 4th Spanish - Students do prayer and a flashcard game with partners to start each class on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Our focus is on asking and answering questions using school supply vocabulary. For example, "Do you have the scissors?", "Yes, I have the scissors." Most recently, we are working on writing partner dialogues using these types of questions and answers. Students are almost at the end of the unit and can expect a test in the next couple of weeks. 5th Spanish - Students do prayer and a journal to start each class on Mondays and Fridays. Their journal consists of writing the date and a weather expression for that day's outdoor conditions in Spanish. Our focus so far has been writing quesitons and answers using supplies and color words. This is the first time students have made sentences that include an adjective describing the noun. There is some different grammar in Spanish than English and they're doing a fine job with it! Students can expect a unit test in the next couple of weeks. 6th Spanish - Students do prayer and a journal to start each class on Mondays and Fridays. Their journal consists of writing the date and a weather expression for that day's outdoor conditions in Spanish. Our focus so far has included classes vocabulary and numbers through 30. Students will soon be learning how to use these words to tell what time they have a class. 7th Spanish - Students do prayer and a journal to start each class on Mondays and Fridays. Their journal consists of writing the date and a weather expression for that day's outdoor conditions in Spanish. They have a textbook starting this year for the first time! I no longer have them copy down their vocabulary because it is all in their book in multiple places. Our first unit has included how to say hello and goodbye, how to introduce yourself, and how to respond to an introduction. We have also discussed introducing a 3rd person if you are a mutual friend. Finally, our unit is wrapping up with telling how you are feeling or what kind of day you are having. Students should expect a test in the next couple of weeks. 8th Spanish - Students do prayer and a journal to start each class on Mondays and Fridays. Their journal consists of writing the date and a weather expression for that day's outdoor conditions in Spanish. So far we have learned 17 verb infinitives ending with -ar and also subject pronouns. Students are now learning to conjugate verbs in the present tense. For example, they have already learned the infinitive verb "to study" and the pronoun "she" so now they'll learn how to say "she studies." Verb conjugation is a fundamental skill taught in high school Spanish 1 classes so this should give students early exposure to that skill. 6th Religion - Students start each class with a journal entry (in English) in response to a prompt that pertains to that day's lesson. We finished Chapter 1 a couple weeks ago and test scores are on PowerSchool. Most recently, students have finished a saint project in response to an invitation from Iowa Catholic Radio. Reports and artwork were scored for a quiz grade and art has been submitted to the radio station for judging. We have also gone through Chapter 2 and will be testing over it next week. NOTE: NJHS meetings will be starting soon! Look for messages on email or class dojo about upcoming meetings after school.

Spring has sprung!  Here is what everyone is doing:

Kindergarteners have finished days of the week and are now studying numbers 1-10.  We are using laminated mats with play dough to work on these words as well as tracing the number words in Spanish.

1st grade has been working a lot on numbers 11-19.  They will test over these numbers in the next couple of weeks.  2nd grade is combining their skills with days, numbers, and months to tell the date.  We have been using sliding sentence strips to practice.  2nd grade will also be testing over this skill in the next couple of weeks. 

3rd graders have finished their mapping unit and will finish the year working on numbers.  We'll eventually use the numbers to do some basic math problems in Spanish. 

4th graders are coming up on the end of their unit over places in the community and prepositional phrases.  Students will do a project in May to showcase what they have learned.

5th grade is almost ready to test over their current unit about things they like to play and places they like to go.  Folders will be sent home next Monday to study and the test will be next Friday, May 8.

6th grade has recently completed a brochure about foods from a Spanish-speaking country of their choice.  These were recorded as a quiz score in the gradebook.  Students are now doing a mini unit over obligations.  They should expect a quiz over this unit next week. 

7th grade is coming up on the end of their current unit.  They have been studying the verbs "to need", "to have", and "to want" in conjunction with school supply words.  They have also learned how to say "a" or "some" in place of "the" before a noun.  Their test will be next Friday, May 8.

8th grade has finished their unit over the verb "ir" which means to go.  They used the verb to say that someone is going to do something.  For example: I am going to study.  After taking the Dowling placement test, we'll do some work with cinco de mayo.

NJHS has their last meeting next Wednesday, May 6.    





Kindergarten has been working on a calendar unit.  We have done lots with the days of the week including a story and putting the words in sequential order.  The biggest challenge with this is that, in Spanish, days of the week begin with Monday and not Sunday.  We will also be working on numbers 1-10.  1st and 2nd grades have been doing days of the week as well, but have been moving at a faster pace and doing more advanced activities.  2nd grade will eventually use days, numbers, and months to tell the date in Spanish.  3rd grade is in the second half of a unit over reading a map in Spanish.  They have learned cardinal directions vocabulary, the words for "symbol", "legend/map key", and some items commonly found on maps including "house", "street", "river", and "railroad."  Students will be assessed on their ability to read a map in Spanish before the end of April.  4th grade has been working on vocabulary for places in the community such as "school", "church", and "office."  They have also done some work with prepositional phrases such as "to the left of" and "next to."  We are starting to build sentences this week to tell where things are located.  By the end of the unit, students will be able to draw their own map and make sentences telling where things are.  5th graders have begun to make questions and answers about likes and dislikes.  They are working on putting words in an order that makes sense and also on translating questions and statements.  They should expect a test over the likes/dislikes unit in late April or early May.  6th grade is almost finished with their food unit!  Their test is coming up on April 10 which is the next time we meet for Spanish class.  7th grade is in the second half of a unit that reviews school supply words and the verbs "to have", "to need", and "to want."  Students have also worked on converting "the" to "a" or "some" before a noun such as "a book" instead of "the book."  8th grade is in the second half of a mini unit over talking about what someone is going to do.  The focus has been conjugating the verb "ir" which means "to go."  This is an irregular verb which does not follow the rules they have been taught so far.  We will finish the unit by adding sequencing words to talk about the order in which someone is going to do certain things.  


*** 8th grade will take a Spanish placement test for Dowling here at St. Joseph after their current unit is finished, probably in late April.  The test will not count towards their grade in Spanish class, but it will tell them where they stand in terms of what Dowling teaches during their Spanish 1 course.  The test is cumulative and covers a wide variety of content that has been taught over the years.  Students were given a study guide for this test before Spring Break including textbook page numbers and what to expect.  I'll give an exact date for the test when it gets closer.

***NJHS students will be doing a babysitting fundraising night on Friday, April 17 from 6-9 pm in the parish center.  If you would like a night out, let us watch your children for a free will offering and enjoy your free time.  A registration form for this is coming home with students this week.

Happy Spring!

Lisa Risvold




Kindergarten is getting towards the end of their food unit.  They have learned 7 fruits words will be assessing over them before Spring break.  1st and 2nd grades are also nearing the end of their food unit.  They have learned 10-12 fruits and vegetables words total.  Our focus has been using these words in questions and answers to find out who likes them.  Students have been doing some writing and speaking with the question "Te gusta (fruit or veggie)?" which means "Do you like (fruit or veggie)?"  They will be assessing on their question, answers, and food vocabulary before Spring break.  3rd and 4th grades have an extra challenge for 3rd trimester.  We do a short calendar exercise at the beginning of each class where they identify yesterday, today, and tomorrow in Spanish.  So far, they have been able to reference the calendar on the door to help them figure out the correct days.  For this trimester, those days will be covered up.  3rd grade has recently been diving into their geography-based map unit.  They have started with learning the 4 cardinal directions in Spanish and have used them to do some games and activities.  The unit will continue with learning words that they may see on maps such as house, store, street, river, and railroad.  Their end goal will be to read a map with these words in Spanish.  4th grade has also moved on to their geography unit involving community places and prepositional phrases.  We have started with working on the places such as school, church, library, office, and restaurant.  By the end of the unit, they should be able to write sentences in Spanish about where these places are at in relationship to each other.  For example, "The church is next to the school."  5th grade finished their clothing unit just before the end of second trimester.  Their fashion magazine project counted as their test for that unit.  They are now moving on to begin a unit on likes and dislikes with an emphasis on places they like to go, sports they like to play, and instruments they like to play.  6th grade is in the middle of a food unit that will focus on ordering food like they would in a restaurant.  They have been studying food vocabulary words for the past few classes and will have a quiz over these tomorrow, Friday, February 27.  Their next step will be using the words to talk about what they would order.  7th grade has recently begun a unit that will cover the following: a review of school supplies vocabulary, using "the" vs. "a", "an", or "some", and the verbs "to need", "to want" and "to have."  8th grade just finished their -er/-ir verb conjugation unit at the end of 2nd trimester.  Their project counted as their test grade for the unit.  Our next focus will be using the verb "to go" to create sentences such as "I am going to do my homework" and "We are going to take care of my brother."  8th grade students were told last week about a placement test for Dowling that I'm going to have them all take sometime in April.  They will take the test in my class and the tests will be sent to Dowling for grading.  The test will NOT affect their grade in my class, but I want them to know where they stand before they go to high school.  The test covers a lot of material that was taught in the past, but not necessary this year.  Students were given a study guide with textbook references for vocabulary. 


TAG students may come get their projects to take home.  Projects are in the library.  Hopefully you got to see them at conferences in the middle school hallway.  Any projects not taken home by Spring break will be thrown away.  Thank you, students, for all your hard work!        

Kindergarten has finished their family unit and has begun working on foods.  We will focus on fruits and some vegetables.  1st and 2nd grades are about halfway through their food unit.  Both are studying fruits and vegetables.  We have been focusing on matching up the English word with the Spanish word and also pronouncing the Spanish words correctly.  3rd and 4th grades just took their test on family members and adjectives.  Students were required to translate sentences using a word bank.  Skills taught during the unit included noun-adjective agreement and how to make a sentence plural.  3rd grade will do a mapping unit next and 4th grade will study people and places in the community.  5th grade has been studying clothing words and how to say what someone is wearing.  They will be doing an in-class project to finish the unit by the end of the trimester.  6th grade just turned in a project to finish their family unit which will count as their test.  Their next unit will be food and how to order in a restaurant.  7th grade is testing over age, location, likes and dislikes on Monday, February 2.  Their next unit will focus on the verbs to need, to want, and to have as well as a review of school supply words.  8th grade has been working on conjugating -er and -ir verbs in the present tense.  They will have a quiz Monday, February 2 and then they will do a project to finish the unit before the end of the trimester.

TAG students have been working on research projects which will be on display during conferences in mid-February.        

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