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

Weekly Update 10/23

Hello Wonderful 4th Grade Families!

Week 7 was a success! We are finishing up our Place Value assessments, and many students have showed mastery in the various skills while working with a number up to the millions– writing in expanded, standard and word form, ordering, comparing and rounding, as well as working through word problems. It’s great to see students able to do things that just a few weeks ago, they could not!

This week, I introduced the students to GoNoodle. Its a great website full of videos that guide students through dances, meditations, stretching exercises and coordination activities. We use GoNoodle to help us get out our wiggles, refocus and as a “transition/brain break” activity between subjects. This is a free resource for teachers and parents, so I would encourage you to check it out! It’s a great (and safe!) site for kids to use and explore on their own or with friends/siblings! We sure have fun in class with it.

I would like to remind all families that next week we will be taking the ITBS standardized tests. It is very important that your students come to school well rested and well fed–breakfast and sleep is ESSENTIAL to your student doing their very best next week. The purpose of these tests is not to stress you or the kids out, so please remember, we use these tests to get feedback on the various learning areas and inform future teaching for the bulk of the year. I have tried to emphasize to the students that all I ask is that they do their best. If you find that your child is stressing about testing, please let me know, and I will do my best to ease their anxiety. I have a very fun week planned for us, and testing is just a part of what we will be doing 🙂

Speaking of plans….next week we will be celebrating Halloween as a class! Friday afternoon is our class party! Students may come to school in free dress (NOT in costume) and will be able to “change” into their costumes at the end of the day before the party. Any questions about the party can be directed toward our wonderfully fabulous room parent, Tricia Bertsch. Please send your student with a costume they can easily put on, preferably something that can slip on over their regular clothes. As always, costumes should be appropriate and reflect our school philosophy. Do not allow your child to bring weapons or masks of any kind. Thank you! 🙂

Have a super weekend!

Ms. DiGirolamo



World Math Day Results


I am so proud of all our hard work and dedication to competing in World Math Day at school and at home. Nice job 4th graders!

Also, a special shout out to the one and only Kelbin, who had the 2nd highest score in the whole school.

So proud. 

Weekly Update 10/16

Happy Friday 4th Grade Families!

Our class had a super week, but it went by so quickly!! I can hardly believe we are starting our 7th week of school on Monday. We learned so many things this week. One of my favorite lessons was our “DEBUG” lesson, where we practiced strategies for dealing with conflict. Students decorated an index card and wrote on the back the strategy they want to focus on this week. Please ask them what DEBUG stands for and see if they can name them all!

D-Decide to Ignore

E-Exit/Move Away

B-Be Friendly

U-Use Firm Words

G-Get An Adult

We have been working in math on ordering, comparing and rounding numbers up to the millions. Its so exciting to see how much they are able to do already! Wednesday was World Math Day, so students participated in that by playing Mathletics with the help of some middle schoolers. It was pretty fun to play math games against students from all over the world. Be sure to ask your child which countries they played against! 🙂

In Science, we finally broke apart our Mock Rocks and divided all the materials into piles. We are learning that rocks are made up of various earth materials, and its a geologist’s job to figure out what! I was glad to see that the students were mature when using our geologists tools such as nails (our version of a pick axe) and hands lens.

In Religion, we are continuing the “Steps To Respect” program, so students are learning how to respond appropriately to friendly behavior, and how to foster friendships both at school and in the community. We practiced “good” and “bad” responses to someone giving us a compliment or trying to start a conversation.

Thank you again for your continued support of SMS! Just a quick reminder that donations related to the Move A Thon will be accepted until October 30th!

Parents, please remember to encourage your children to eat hearty, nutritious breakfasts, and pack a lunch that will help their bodies and brains! This is especially important as cold/flu season is upon us AND as we approach ITBS Testing (more on that next week).

Enjoy your (hopefully) sunny weekends and I can’t wait to see you again on Monday. I’m so blessed to be apart of your children’s lives, so thank you for that.

Ms. DiGirolamo


Its Time to Order Scholastic Books!!

Hello families! I am so excited to finally have Scholastic Book orders to send home! Please check your child’s backpack for the forms. The due date and our class code is located on a label on the front page. Its super easy and convenient to order online, and then our class gets extra points, which will earn us prizes and free books!! This is only the October pack, so if you’re looking for Christmas books or potential gifts, that will be coming in early November. If you have any questions about how orders works, please let me know and I can assist you.


I appreciate all your support at home in encouraging the students to explore different genres of books, and to always be READING! A love of literature is a wonderful thing to see in your children.


(In case you lose it, our class code is: PHHW7 and October orders are due Oct 23. Thank you!)


Have a great day!

Ms. DiGirolamo

Weekly Update 10/9

Hi 4th Grade Families! 

We had a great first full week of October! Our big focus this week was Math Centers. We are finally getting used to all 4 centers and working our hardest at each one! I was so proud to see students working independently and respecting the expectations at each center. We are coming along in our place value unit, and lots of students are showing evidence of mastering that standard!

We also started our Map Grid Projects, and all students should have brought that home to work on. It has 2 parts, and can be a little big tricky, so please help your child to break the assignment apart if need be. It should be fun, however, as they can be creative, color, and design their own maps! In science, we began to make observations on our mock rocks, and the students are really excited to break them apart next week! We learned about the properties of rocks that geologists look for, and how we can tell rocks apart.

Parents, please remember that tomorrow is our annual MOVE-A-THON! Students should come to school dressed in athletic gear (weather appropriate) as well as running shoes! Please, please do not send your child to school in shoes that will be painful, unsafe or uncomfortable to move in! Thank you! They will be getting their t-shirts when they arrive at school on Friday.

Yesterday (Wednesday) I shared with the class some sad news–my childhood dog, Holly, will be put down on Friday, as she is very old. Some students may have come home mentioning it. I am so blessed to have your children as my students…many of them have brought me small gifts, made cards or notes, or given me a sweet hug to help me feel better. The empathy I see in your children is so very comforting and a true blessing to us all. Thank you, parents.

We had another great week, 4th grade! Thank you!

♥ Ms. DiGirolamo

Weekly Update 10/2

Weekly Update 10/2

Hello 4th Grade Families!

Thank you for another great (short) week. Four weeks in Fourth grade and we are feeling FABULOUS! 🙂

This week, we started Walk to Read, math games and the Steps to Respect Program. We also learned about maps and got a little preview of our first science investigation!

I am excited to start Math Centers next week, where students will move in small groups of three or four to different centers during our math block. This week, we have been establishing expectations, practicing procedures and learning new skills. Next week, students will get a chance to participate in 4 centers: Teacher Table, where I will teach small groups; Math Games Center, where students will practice the skills they have been taught; Independent Work, and Technology Center, where students will use iPads to learn new skills and practice foundational math skills. I believe this will be a great way for our class to experience variety in math and for me to reach students on a more individualized level! I can’t wait to get started next week!

Don’t forget to get pledges for the Move-A-Thon! If you have any questions about how that will work, please ask. More info to come on the incentives for students who receive top pledges! Thank you!

Just a reminder, there will be no school this FRIDAY 10/2. It is Teacher Excellence Day in the Archdiocese and all teachers will be participating in professional development! 🙂 Enjoy your day off, 4th graders!

Have a fun, safe, relaxing weekend everybody!
♥ Ms. DiGirolamo