Weekly Update 1/22

Hellloooo from SMS!

I hope you were able to enjoy your day off on Monday in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. We spent lots of time this week talking about what kind of man he was. Some things we came up with were…a dreamer, a man full of integrity, a man who wanted change, a great speaker and a man of God.

We also finished up our Math unit this week on Data Organization and Interpretation. All students worked really hard and did a great job showing their skills! We are getting ready to move onto our next unit, Multiplication and Division! Woo hoo!

Last week, students were asked to write a paper about a character focus we have been learning about. They could choose from citizenship, respect, patience, self control or integrity. I have to admit that I was blown away and brought to tears by their work! Your children are so thoughtful, heartfelt and observant. We should all be proud of the work they put in and the qualities they themselves are dedicated to showing. I gave students an opportunity to share their work with the class, and it was great to see how proud they were of their work.

I wanted to mention that Catholic School’s week is coming up soon (First week of Feb) and we are getting our classroom prepared for Open House on Sunday, January 31st! The Thursday folders this week outline the theme for each day we celebrate and how students should dress. Let me know if you have any questions. 🙂

Lastly, Scholastic Book orders went home today. Please encourage your student to pick a few books and help get them excited about reading!! There are some great choices in the booklet. Remember that every order our grade receives earns our classroom points that I can use to get FREE BOOKS for our classroom library. Win-win! I encourage you to order online. All orders are due by Friday, January 29th. Thanks!

Hope all is well and that God continues to bless you with peace, joy and happiness!

“Intelligence plus character–that is the goal of true education.” -MLK

♥Ms. DiGirolamo

Weekly Update 1/15

Hi All!

Happy Friday! Students have had an overall great week. I have had so many proud moments–but I think my top moment was at Mass on Wednesday. 4th Grade has been doing such a spectacular job with the Readings, bringing up the Gifts, saying the Intention, and being respectful. I can’t tell you how lucky I feel to be their teacher.

4th graders have been learning lots this week! In Religion, (almost) everyone has passed their Memorare test! It is amazing to see the progress they’ve made with it. We started to learn the Nicene Creed. This one is tough, but we are taking it piece by piece and students are motivated to get started! In Social Studies, students are learning how climate affects vegetation around the world. We also discussed Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and we will continue that conversation into next week as well. In Math, we are finishing up our Data unit by learning about Probability and Possible Outcomes. We will be taking our unit test next week, and I am confident that many students will show mastery in their data analysis skills! In Science, we have finished our Earth Materials unit. Students conducted various tests on rocks and minerals, just a geologist would do, in order to decide which minerals are in granite. It was exciting and engaging! In Reading, we practiced our verb usage and learned about action, helping and linking verbs. We analyzed some great MLK quotes and found all the verbs!

Thank you to all the parents that have volunteered at school this week, and in weeks past. Its great to see you in the lunch room, office, Mass and out at recess. Your presence is truly appreciated and helps makes teachers’ jobs easier as well!

Please remember that we have a 3 day weekend, so I will see all your kiddo’s smiling faces on Tuesday! Have a safe, blessed, rested weekend. I’ll be out enjoying the snow! 

“Peace is not merely a distant goal we seek, but a means by which we arrive at that goal.” -Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


Ms. DiGirolamo ♥

Weekly Update: 1/7 Welcome Back!

Hello Wonderful 4th Grade Families,

Happy 2016!!

I sincerely hope you all had an amazing Christmas and New Year. I know that I enjoyed seeing my family in Denver and Phoenix (although it wasn’t warm at all!) and appreciated the time to relax and refocus. I enjoyed hearing your children’s stories about the adventures they had!

We are coming back from break with new focus and energy! I am excited to say that we have been getting back into the school routine and I am impressed with the students’ maturity and responsibility. This month’s focus is INTEGRITY. We will be continually discussing what that means to us and how we can live it to the best of our abilities. I invite you to discuss with your child how they can show integrity at home as well.

In Math, we have been learning how to interpret, represent and analyze data using line plots, bar graphs and double bar graphs! They seem to really enjoy it and we are almost ready to move on to probability and prediction! Woo!

In Social Studies, we have been reading about Climate and Weather, and students did a great job of reading as a class yesterday.

In Religion, we are wrapping up our memorization of the Memorare, and many students are confident in their ability to recite it! Next week, we will begin to learn the Nicene Creed (its a long one!!) and I hope they will be just as excited. We also had a talk about our school’s SLE’s: Serve, Lead, Love and Learn. Students watched this awesome video and then made New Year’s Resolutions for each SLE. My favorite one was: “Learn how to build a robot!” And guess what? We did!! 4th graders got to visit Middle School’s Robotics class and assemble and control robots on Wednesday. It was so much fun and I have a feeling we may have some future engineers in our group 🙂

Lastly, I wanted to let all families know that we have 2 new, amazing students in our class…. Sam Boyd and Sofia Griffin. We are so lucky to have them and are thrilled they are part of our 4th Grade Family.


Your children are a blessing to me each day, and I am always thankful to be apart of this community. God Bless.

♥Ms. DiGirolamo

Weekly Update 12/17

4th Grade Families–

Woo Hoo! We’ve almost made it to Christmas! I hope this update finds you well. This week, students have been working hard! In Math, we have been using line plots to represent and interpret data. Its been so fun! We have also been writing a lot and students are excited to use the computers to type up their personal narratives. We have been preparing for Christmas in many ways and are anxiously anticipating the birth of Jesus! Students have learned that Advent is a time of patience and waiting, as well as rejoicing!!


Please have a fun, safe and Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


See you all in 2016! I can’t wait. Its going to be a FABULOUS YEAR!

Ms. DiGirolamo

Weekly Update 12/04

Happy Advent Wonderful 4th Grade Families!

Last night was our annual St. Nick Night Christmas concert and all the SMS students that participated did AWESOME! I am so proud of all the students and it was a great way to get into the Christmas spirit. Thank you all so much for your support and participation.

This week, students have been hard at work learning new skills and practicing old ones. In Math, we shifted focus into data collection and organization. At the beginning of the week, each students created and conducted their own survey for the class, then displayed their data on tally and frequency charts. This organization allowed students to analyze the data quickly and pull information from it. For example, we learned that the 4th Grade’s favorite prayer is the Hail Mary and their favorite color is blue? Next, each student found the mean and mode of their data set. In Science, students learned that geologists test rocks in many ways to determine it’s properties. We conducted one of these tests in our own classroom–the Calicite Test–using vinegar. We watched as some of the rocks we tested reacted to the acid. A reaction told us that the rock contains the mineral calcite!

As we begin a new month, we also add a “focus” characteristic to our classroom discussions. In the past few months, we have been building citizenship, respect, self control, and now…patience! This week, we talked about the relationship between patience and self control, and discussed its importance. We also watched a great video on the “Marshmellow Test.” You can watch it here. It’s a great way to discuss delayed gratification and the benefits of patience and self control.

I hope you all enjoy the weekend and continue to wait patiently for Jesus’ coming at Christmastime. Happy 1st week of Advent.


Ms. DiGirolamo


Update 11/24

Hello 4th Grade Families,

Happy short week! It has been so lovely meeting with parents for conferences this week. I feel so blessed that you’ve all taken the time to discuss with me your student’s strengths, challenges and progress. SMS is truly blessed to have you here.

Although it’s been a short week, I have tried to squeeze in as much academics as I can! Students have been busy reading The Last of the Really Great Whandoodles in this class for Walk to Read. Its such a fun adventurous book! In Math, students created their own Scoot game on notecards with multi-digit addition and subtraction problems. We placed the questions all around the room and students “Scooted” around answering them. It was great to move around and solve problems our classmates created! We have also been busy studying the Memorare. Its amazing to see so many students so motivated to learn this new prayer. It has enhanced our Morning Meetings and I have noticed more engagement and excitement to recite the prayer. Our class has also been preparing for St. Nick Night (Dec 3rd, don’t forget!) by rehearsing our songs. It has really gotten us into the holiday spirit.

I hope you all enjoy the days off and time with family and friends. Please take this opportunity to remind your children that we have so much to be thankful for, and that it feels so great to give to others. Speaking of which, our Thanksgiving boxes went out today. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR DONATIONS. The family we are sponsoring will be so thankful.

As always, I feel beyond blessed to be your child’s 4th grade teacher. Thank you!

Ms. DiGirolamo

Update 11/18

Hi Everyone!

We have been having a nice week so far! We had quite the “adventure” yesterday with the power outages, but the students handled the change very well! They were still hard at work in the dark, using iPads and flashlights to complete their Maps and Globes books. I am glad that everyone was able to stay safe (and dry) through the weather. Let us continue to pray for those who were less fortunate.

Students have been working hard in Math to add and subtract multi-digit numbers. We are focusing on subtracting across zeros, which can be quite challenging at times. In Science, we are learning about mineral properties, and conducted scratch tests on 4 special minerals. Students learned how to identify the minerals based on “hardness” using tools such as fingernails, pennies and paper clips. They were excited geologists! 🙂 In Writing, we are continuing our Personal Narratives and learning how to edit, revise and add details.

Just a reminder that Scholastic Book Orders are due on FRIDAY! Our Class code is PHHW7. Please consider ordering online.

We are very sad as a school to say goodbye to the Josey family, as they will be venturing off to Australia. Gianluca, you’ve been such a wonderful addition to our 4th Grade Family and we will not forget you! 

Thank you all for your support at home. Your kids bring so much joy!

Stay Warm,

Ms. DiGirolamo

Update 11/3

Hello Amazing 4th Grade Families!

I am happy to announce that we survived ITBS Testing week and Halloween and November is off to a great start! By Friday, we will have 9 weeks of school under our belts, can you believe it?

I wanted to say how proud I am of your students for their hard work during testing last week. They really showed a lot of maturity, stamina and respect! The results from testing should be out by the end of the month.

This week, we are back into our regular schedule. In math, we have moved onto our addition/subtraction unit, and we are learning about the commutative and associative properties of addition. Ask your student if they can teach you about it! In Social Studies, we are looking into the 5 regions of Washington. We are making a foldable graphic organizer to show all that we have learned. If your student is in my classroom for Walk To Read, we started our first novel, The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles by Julie Edwards. It is a wonderful fantasy tale that allows students to use their imaginations and really takes us on an adventure. I think the students will have a lot of fun with this one 🙂

We are starting to practice our songs for St. Nick Night (It is December 3rd, I believe) and in religion we are continuing to learn about our relationship with God and his role in our lives. Our November focus is Self Control. We will be talking about the importance of practicing self control, what to do when its hard to control ourselves, and we may even play some fun self control games to test our abilities! I believe self control is one of the most important fruits of the Spirit and has a huge impact on our happiness, success and health. Did you know that research shows that kids who displayed greater amounts of self-control at even age 4 went on to earn better grades, were more popular with peers and teachers, were less likely to report problems with drug use and earned higher salaries as adults? We are always working on self control in our classroom, but this month, it gets a special emphasis. Please chat with your kiddos at home about self control and how they are working to improve 🙂

Thank you, families, again for this opportunity to teach your children. I feel so blessed everyday to be apart of this SMS community and your lives. Please feel free to come to me with any questions or concerns you may have moving forward.

Here’s to a wonderful November!

Ms. DiGirolamo