Thursday, June 22, 2017

Summer 2017

Thank you!

Thank you all for an unforgettable year! As I've settled into the first week of summer, many memories from our year together have crossed my mind and made me smile.  I have loved working with you and your children this year! Thank you, not only for the memories, but for the kind notes and gifts I received at the end of the school year.  It means so much that you took the time to think of me and put together thoughtful letters and gifts. I'm working on personalized thank you notes that will be mailed to you soon!

Sutter's Fort Thank you!

Thank you so much to everyone who contributed their time and materials to Sutter's Fort! We all loved our day at the fort and made memories to last a lifetime!  The trip was a great success due to the efforts of the parents to make everything go off without a hitch.  Thank you so very much!

Sutter's Fort Clothes

If you have any Sutter's Fort costumes that you've not yet returned, you may return them to Cara's house at 4 Longfellow Dr.  Please do this as soon as possible, as she is trying to get all of the costumes washed and returned to the costume closet at school by June 30th.

Sutter's Fort Photos

I am sure that you are all dying to relive our fabulous day at Sutter's Fort!

Here is the link to the wonderful video courtesy of Birgitte:

Here is the link to all of the images:

You should be able to download the photos individually. If you want to download EVERYTHING in one batch, please email Colleen Donaldson at She can help you. If there are any issues with viewing or downloading photos, just let Colleen know.

1st Day School Supplies

This is it!  FRIDAY, JUNE 30th is the LAST DAY to get your 1st Day School Supply kit for the 2017-2018 school year. Thank you to the families who have already purchased! I recommend that you do this if you can.  The 5th grade list is easy to locate and order at the 1st Day School Supplies website, and if you order now, you won't have to think about it in August when we come back to school.

In case you don’t know why 1st Day School Supplies is a great way to get your child’s school supplies for next year, here are the Top 10 reasons:

Top 10 reasons to order your child’s supplies through 1st Day School Supplies:

10. You will save money on school supplies – when doing a price comparison, 1st Day was LESS than Target.

9.  10% of sales go back to the EDNA PTA.  (They buy in bulk so Edna gets a kickback on the savings!)

8. You don’t have to remember to bring school supplies on the 1st day of school – 1st Day delivers them directly to your child’s teacher! 

7.  It’s sugar-free, organic, preservative and additive-free, gluten-free, and fat-free… unlike all those snack-foods and candy you will find tempting you at check-out.

6. You won’t need to run around to several stores during your last precious days of summer vacation searching for school supplies.  Because that's so much fun. 

5. You can tell your spouse, kids, or friends that you have to shop for supplies, but instead go for a hike.

4. If you wear your jammies while shopping, no one will give you the stink-eye.

3. You can enjoy your beverage of choice while ordering.

2. 1st Day is a family-owned company and contributes to a number of charitable organizations and hires students and differently-abled employees to get the job done right!

1. You won’t end up buying a cart full of stuff you don’t need in addition to only SOME of the school supplies available at your local big box store.

Any questions, please contact Zoe Pinksa at

Have an amazing summer!

I hope that you all have a relaxing yet entertaining summer.  I can't wait to see everyone back at school in the fall!

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Week of June 5th, 2017

Sutter's Fort

Next Monday, June 12th is our long-anticipated trip to Sutter’s Fort!  Please bring your child to school by 7:00 a.m.  The fourth graders should come to their classroom, as the teachers will be take attendance and pass out possible bags there.  Please be prompt, as we have a few things to take care of before leaving on the buses at 7:30.  Students should already be dressed in their costume when they arrive at school.  Please have your children leave any watches and jewelry (earrings included unless ears are newly pierced) at home, as they are not period-appropriate.  Girls also need to be sure that any nail polish has been removed before coming to school.

Our day at the Fort will be a long one and we will not be returning to school until 9:30 p.m. the evening of the 12th.   Please arrive at Edna a little before 9:30 p.m. on the 12th.  As soon as the buses arrive at school, we will release children off the buses one-by-one.  You will need to find the bus your child is riding in and then check in with the parent coordinator assigned to your child’s bus before taking your child home.  We will have signs on the side of the buses, indicating which classes are on which bus.

All borrowed costume items must be returned to school on Tuesday the 13th!  Your child should bring to school any borrowed items in a bag.  It is not necessary to clean them beforehand.  They will be laundered by parent volunteers at a later time.  It is very important that everything borrowed is returned on time.  We will need those costumes for next year’s class!  Also, please consider donating your child’s personal costume to the Sutter’s Fort Costume Closet.  We can always use more!  Thanks so much!

Since we will be gone at Sutter’s Fort all Monday, we will be providing a pizza lunch to your child on the following school day, Tuesday, June 13th.  Please be sure you cancel any hot lunches you may have ordered for the 12th and 13th.

Because our trip to Sutter’s Fort is so late this year, our end-of-the year class party will be on Tuesday the 13th.  All five fourth grade classes will have a joint party.  We will enjoy the pizza lunch together and then spend some time playing outside.  This will be a student-only party, as we will have just spent the entire day before with many of our students’ parents.  They will surely need the day off to rest and recover! 

Dismissal on the Last Day of School

The last day of school will be on Friday, June 16th.  Please note that dismissal will be at 12:45pm on that day.  Please make arrangements to pick up your child early on that day.  We will still eat lunch at school that day, so be sure to send your child to school with a lunch.

Woody's Ice Cream Social

We are lucky to once again have an ice cream social at school to wrap up the school year. Thank you, Woody's Ice Cream, for providing this for Edna's students!  This will happen directly after school on Thursday, June 15th at 3:05pm.

Summer Birthdays

If your child has a summer birthday and would like to celebrate with the class before we leave for break, please email me. We can set up a day and time to celebrate!

1st Day School Supplies

The deadline to order your 1st Day School Supplies is June 30th! Here are some reasons why you should consider putting in your order!
·      Edna PTA partners with 1st Day School Supplies which creates and ships kits with the exact supplies requested by your child’s teachers for next year.
·      Supply Kits are shipped directly to Edna with your child’s name on it before the first day of school.
·      You don’t have to run around the week before school, or stand in long lines at big box stores!
·      Prices meet or beat other retailers.
·      PTA receives 10% back to fund programs and supplies at Edna!
·      1st Day School Supplies is a family owned company chosen as our partner because of their dedication to service, community, and the environment.
·      Go to the, choose your child’s grade for next year, checkout, and get it checked off of your to-do list now!  It’s that easy!

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Week of May 1st, 2017

I hope that this blog update finds you well! Thank you so much for the support that you provide to your children and our school each day.  I appreciate each and every one of you!

Kiddo Donation Day!

Tomorrow, May 4th, is KIDDO! Kick-off and Donation Day!  I want you to know how truly grateful I am to teach in a district that honors and supports the Arts.  I have many teacher friends in other school districts who are not as fortunate.  Thanks to KIDDO! your children are writing poetry, dancing to disco music, playing the cello, singing in a choir, and using technology to create and practice the skills and concepts taught across the curriculum. Their learning is enriched from the talents of Nora Hunter, Phoebe Dong, Katie Thiel, Jackie LaLanne, Ms. Harvey, Alan Tong, Coach Guzman, Terri Glass and Alan Scofield.  Please donate to KIDDO! to the extent possible for your family on Donation Day, so we can offer your children the same great education next year.  Thanks in advance for your participation!  

On May 4th, we will be wearing our red, black, and/or yellow to represent KIDDO!   Please encourage your children to do the same.  Hope to see you then!

Sutter's Fort Costume Check Day

An important  milestone in the Sutter's Fort journey is approaching.  On Thursday, May 18th, students will be asked to wear their pioneer costumes to school for a costume check and photo day.  We do this ahead of time to avoid last minute stress for parents and students.  Regardless of character assignment, pioneer attire is encouraged for all students.  Please support your child in gathering pieces of their pioneer costume by May 18th.  Reach out if you have any questions about costume requirements! :)

The students have been told of their character name at this point, but nothing more.  I have more information that I will provide them by the end of the week.  Not to worry!

Chorus Concert

Our fantastic school chorus will be performing in their big concert on Tuesday, May 9, at 7pm in the Mill Valley Middle School Gymnasium. Chorus students need to arrive by 6:45 wearing their chorus outfit. The chorus dress is black on the bottom and white on the top, with hair pulled back and out of the face. Below is the link to Nora Hunter’s website where you can find an information flyer AND lyric sheets to practice the words. (Just click on CHORUS to find everything you need)
If you have any questions, feel free to email Nora Hunter at
Nora Hunter's Website

Film Screening

On May 10th, join Edna and thousands of organizations, companies, schools, museums, libraries and homes in a screening of the film “50/50: Rethinking the Past, Present, and Future of Women + Power.” 50/50 gives the 10,000 year history of women + power — from setbacks and uprisings, to the bigger context of where we are today. It is part of a global conversation about what it will take to get to a more gender-balanced world. The film is 20 minute long and will be shown in the library May 10th at 8:15AM. Continue the conversation at home with questions from this discussion guide:
More info on the film here:

Open House 

Open House is coming soon! Put this exciting, celebratory event on your calendar! You are invited to come tour our classroom and see many beautiful examples of student learning on Wednesday, May 24th from 6-7pm.  I look forward to seeing you all there and celebrating a fantastic year together!

Parent Volunteer Opportunity

Interested in learning more about a unique, low-maintenance, and super fun volunteer opportunity at Edna? Stop by one of our PROUD Play Training opportunities to learn more about the organized recess games being played at lunch recess. Attending a training makes you eligible, not obligated, to be a PROUD Play coach. RSVP for a training here.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Week of March 27th, 2017

Instrument Project

Here's a notes from Mrs. Hunter about the 4th grade musical instrument project.

Hi Everyone,

We have had an ongoing music project for the last month where students are responsible for creating their own instruments at home and bringing it to the music room.

ALL FOURTH GRADERS are participating in this project, and the deadline is next week during music, which means next Wednesday for some classes and next Friday for others.

The fourth grade page on my website has the project description and also some links for some tutorials to get them started.

Mrs. Hunter's Website



Sutter's Fort Update

It's an exciting time of the year! This week, your child will find out which pioneer they will be portraying at Sutter's Fort.  Next week, they will be given more information about their pioneer to guide their research and preparation for our trip. 

Now is the time to start thinking about a costume for your child to wear on the field trip.  In this week's Wednesday folder, you received an informational packet about what clothes are appropriate for the trip.  Please take time to review it with your child and make a plan to find a costume.  

There are many places to find appropriate clothes for your child's costume.  Talk to 5th grade parents of kids who have already been to Sutter's Fort.  They may have saved something! Visit secondhand stores like Goodwill to find missing pieces.  Come to the Edna Maguire costume closet to see what you can borrow! It will be after school next week.  Here are the dates:

Wednesday, April 5th, 2-3pm
Thursday, April 6th, 3-4pm

If you plan to visit the costume closet to see what you can borrow, please bring a bag for the clothes that you find.  You will be given a "receipt" to show what you borrowed and reminders about how and when to return the clothes.  Future trips to Sutter's Fort depend on these clothes being returned in a timely manner.  This is especially true this year, as our trip is on the last week of school.

We will have a costume check in May to make sure that all kids have a costume and are ready for the trip.  Below are several resources for costumes. Check them out! :)

Please reach out to me if you have questions about the costumes or other elements of the trip.  I'm happy to help!

Costume Resources

Sutter's Fort Trade Store

Phone: (916) 442-4966

Costumes Enough by Carolyn Elder

Phone: (916) 206-7145


Close Enough Costumes by Sharon Baker

Phone: (916) 721-5557


American History Costume Closet

Phone: (916) 284-4345


I Wannabe Costumes

Phone: (916) 371-0901


Costume Junction

Phone: (916) 723-2528


How They Lived and Living History by Shannon

Field Trip Updates

Petaluma Adobe

Yesterday, we spent a fun and educational day at the Petaluma Adobe where the fourth graders learned why General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo acquired 66,000 acres of land from the Mexican government in the mid 1800s and built a rancho there.  Our docent also shared about life at the rancho, including some of the jobs commonly performed there.  Our visit gave the fourth graders a glimpse of what life was like in California back then and a taste of what's to come at Sutter's Fort!  Thank you to following parents who took time out of their day to drive and chaperone for the trip. This trip would not have been possible without their support!  Thank you also to the Edna Maguire PTA for covering the cost of the trip!  

Fish Release- Wednesday, April 5th

The date of this field trip has been changed! I made a mistake on the new field trip forms that came out this week, but the date for this trip is in fact Wednesday, April 5th.  The reason for this date change is that our fish our growing more quickly than we expected.  The trout are now in the fry stage and need to be released before spring break.  We have had so much fun watching them change and grow over the past month. It will be bittersweet to release them!

Audubon Canyon Ranch- Friday, April 21st

We will spend the day hiking with a docent at Audubon Canyon Ranch near Bolinas.  Thank you to the parents who have signed up to drive and hike with us! It will be an incredible day learning about nature.  Please be sure to cancel hot lunch orders for that day and send your child with a lunch that is easy to eat out on the trail.  Dressing in layers will also be essential that day because you never know if we will be fogged in! Thank you for your help with preparing your child for this trip.

Dance Show- Friday, April 7th

Our dance lessons with Alan Scofield of Young Imaginations are coming to a close.  Please come join in our celebration on April 7th at 2:00pm in the MPR.  The kids have loved their lessons with Mr. Scofield and are quite the sight to see on the dance floor! I am so amazed by their creativity during our dance classes.  Check out this video for a sneak peek of what's to come at the performance! I hope to see you there!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Week of March 13th, 2017

Upcoming Field Trips

You may have noticed an abundance of field trip permission slips coming home lately! It's true, things are getting busy here at school! All of our upcoming field trips are incredibly special in their own ways. Here's a little bit of information about them:

March 29th, 2017- Petaluma Adobe

We will visit the Petaluma Adobe, a state historic park.  General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo owned this rancho when Mexico controlled California's land.  We will get to take a look at what life was like at ranchos in the 1800s and learn more about the history of the rancho period.

April 17th, 2017- Lake Lagunitas

This trip is the Monday after Spring Break! We will drive to Lake Lagunitas in Fairfax to release the trout that we have been raising in our classroom.  Ask your child what they've learned so far about trout in science class! It's been so fun watching them hatch and grow as alevin.  On the 17th, we will release the trout, learn more about the watershed, take a hike around the lake and enjoy a picnic lunch together.

April 21st, 2017- Audubon Canyon Ranch

This is a whole day hiking adventure to study local habitats.  Audubon Canyon Ranch is located near Bolinas and is a beautiful place to see wildlife.  We will break off into docent-led groups and spend the day exploring in nature!

Please mark these field trips on your calendar now and sign up to drive if you can! I know that these trips are very close together and that it's hard to take time off of work, so we may have an increased need for drivers this time around.  Thanks for any effort you can make to come with us!

For each field trip, please remember to cancel any hot lunch orders and order a field trip lunch in advance if you would like.  Kids will need to have bagged snacks and lunches for each trip. Thank you!

Dance Performance

Our 4th graders have been studying different kinds of dance with Alan Scofield for the past several weeks.  We thank Kiddo! for funding this incredible program.  The kids really come alive when they hear the music to their favorite dance pieces.  It's fascinating to see how their personalities translate to their moves on the dance floor! Come and join the fun during our dance performance on April 7th, at 2:00pm. This is the day before Spring Break, so please make an effort to keep your child in school on this day.  They will not want to miss the performance! 

Upcoming State CAASPP testing and schedule

State testing is coming up quickly! We will be preparing here at school throughout the month of April and testing will begin on May 1st.  During our testing weeks, please support your child at home by helping them get a good night's sleep each night, providing them with a nutritious breakfast, and getting to school on time.  Arriving late can cause a lot of stress for students on testing days, as can a lack of sleep! When we get closer to testing, I will reach out again to ask for healthy snacks to be donated on testing days. For now, please mark the testing days on your calendar so that your family will ready when the dates arrive. If you know in advance that your child will be absent on a testing day, please let me know as soon as you can. Thank you!

Monday, May 1st, 8:45-10:05am
Tuesday, May 2nd, 10:20-11:45am
Wednesday, May 3rd, 11:00-11:45am
Thursday, May 4th, 8:45-10:05am
Friday, May 5th, 8:45-10:05am

Monday, May 8th, 8:45-10:05am
Tuesday, May 9th, 10:20-11:45am
Wednesday, May 10th, 11:00-11:45am
Thursday, May 11th, 8:45-10:05am
Friday, May 12th, 8:45-10:05am

Sutter's Fort!

We are continuing to work behind the scenes to prepare for our incredible trip to Sutter's Fort on Monday, June 12th!  Thank you to everyone who has volunteered to help at home and at the fort! This trip would not be possible without you! 

In the next couple of weeks, your child will learn which real life pioneer will be their Sutter's Fort persona!  Once they find this out, it's time to start looking for a costume to borrow, make or purchase.  We will not send you out on a hunt empty handed. I will send home an informational packet about clothing in the 1800s to help guide your search.  Also, the 4th grade teachers and our incredible costume guru, Cara Guyot, will make a presentation to all of the students about what they should look for in a costume.  If you have any questions about costume requirements, please don't hesitate to contact me.  There is also a Sutter's Fort costume lending closet which will be open during the week before Spring Break. You and your child can go to the closet and find a costume to check out for the trip. Here are those dates:

Wednesday, 4/5, after school
Thursday, 4/6, after school

Please plan to have your child's costume ready for the costume check day on May 18th. Thank you for all of your help with this!


All of the students in our class have an account on so that they can log in for optional extra math practice.  TenMarks is a fantastic website because it provides videos and hints to help students who are unsure of how to solve a problem.  Also, it provides practice for the students using an interface that is similar to the new state testing, which increases their comfort level.  I encourage students to use scratch paper to work out their thinking while working in TenMarks.

I am adding assignments for review as we continue to cover new math standards and as students complete the assignments that I've already posted.  If there are no new assignments available, students can always choose to do a "Jam Session" on a topic of their choice. I just put new assignments up today, so there should be plenty available for those who eagerly tackled the last bunch of assignments! 

To log in, students should go to and use the username and password they've been assigned.  All students should have this information in their homework binders, but if they have misplaced it, just send me an email or have your child ask me for another copy. Please let me know if you have any questions about TenMarks!

April Talking Calendar

On Monday, the students will be assigned their April talking calendar project.  Here are the due dates for the project so that you can help keep your child on track. Please reach out if you have any questions.

April Talking Calendar
Timeline for Success!

Assigned in class                     on Monday, March 20th

Complete all research (yellow pages)             by Friday, March 24th

Complete writing outline            in class on Monday, March 27th

Complete rough draft                     by Wednesday, March 29th
(Your teacher will return with comments on Friday, March 31st)

Complete cover                       by Monday, April 3rd

Type paragraph in Google Drive and turn in finished product
by Friday, April 7th
(Note: This is the day before Spring Break. If your child will be absent on that day, they should turn in their TC before they leave.)
Garden Update

Hello Gardeners!

With spring here, we have many opportunities to help out with garden-related projects.

You can work on a job in the garden.

You can come to the craft night on Tuesday, March 21st to help make fairy wands for the Garden Craft Faire next month.

If you can't make the craft night, but would like to help out on your own time, we have chickens that need to be stuffed! These cute little guys are one of the most popular items at our Craft Faire. Want to take home some sewn bodies to stuff and stitch closed? We can provide all the materials. Email Kristy Kale at

Our garden grows because of YOU!


Kristy Kale

PTA Survey

Please visit this link and complete this year's PTA survey:

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Week of January 23rd, 2017

Symphony Day Field Trip

This Friday, Edna Maguire's 4th graders will participate in the Marin Symphony's Symphony Day concert!  We are already preparing for how to be an attentive, respectful audience and are really looking forward to the show! We have a packed schedule on Friday, which means that we will have to each lunch on the way home from the field trip.  If your child has a hot lunch order for Friday, please cancel it and send a bagged lunch instead.  That way, they will be sure to have time to each their lunch. Please be sure to pack a snack as well, so everyone can nibble on something before the show. Thank you for your help with this! 

Edna's Interactive Art Show

February 6-10, 2017
Starting Monday, February 6, the multi-purpose room will be transformed into a vibrant art gallery, where you can peruse magnificent original works from EVERY Edna student. Throughout the week, students will participate in special Kiddo! Art classes held in the MPR. The classes are open to family members, so plan to join your junior Picasso or Rodin for what's sure to be a fun and exciting art project! Please see the schedule below for your classroom's date and time. You're also invited to join us in "the gallery" for a special evening reception on Wednesday Feb 8th from 5:30-6:30pm.

Please join us for our special interactive art class! Come to the MPR on Monday, Feb 6 from 2:15-3:05pm to join in the fun. I hope to see many of you there!

Wax Museum Project

As you may have inferred by this point, the Wax Museum project is a big one! This is fourth grade's big at home project of the year. Thank you for all of the support you've already given your children in researching their character and for checking in with your children to make sure they are meeting deadlines.  

Speaking of deadlines, here are the remaining deadlines for this project. Be sure to mark your calendars for the big event on February 16th.

Friday, Jan. 27th:       Research and Planning Packet DUE
Friday, Feb. 3rd:        1st Draft of Monologue DUE
Friday, Feb. 10th:        Final draft of monologue DUE
                                   Poster DUE
Monday, Feb 13th:       Picture of Costume DUE (by email or in person)
Tuesday, Feb. 14th:        Locations Assigned
                          First “Rehearsal” + Information
    Session (during school)
Wednesday, Feb. 15th:   Rehearsal (during school)
Thursday, Feb. 16th:       Rehearsal (during school)
                           6:00pm WAX MUSEUM!!!

In library class today, Mrs. Monge gave a fantastic lesson on how to start your monologue with a hook. The kids practiced these strategies verbally and should have a lot of great ideas for speech starters. For your reference, I've typed up the ideas from our lesson's chart below.



Most babies... Most babies... Most babies weren't _____________.
Imagine... Imagine... I didn't have to imagine. I'm _____________.


Have you ever...?
Can you imagine...?


The hot sun beat down on me all day as I...
The water splashed viciously in my face as my arms tore through the pool...
Thousands of bright, beady eyes were on me as I took the stage to...

Please support your child with writing this monologue as you see fit. I appreciate your support and the kids do too! I will be giving feedback and editing support once I receive the rough drafts next week. Then, students will type their monologues and start memorizing them. It's a very exciting time!

Please email me as any questions arise about this project. I'm happy to help however I can.

Dance with Alan (Thanks Kiddo!)

Last Friday, we started the first of 10 dance lessons with the wonderful Alan Scofield.  Alan has been teaching dance in Mill Valley since I was a student here, and he is truly an institution.  We had a blast doing a Start Wars themed dance and learning some disco moves!  You all must be modeling these moves at home, because they were quick studies! :) 

Please mark your calendars now for the 4th grade dance performance at 2:00pm on Friday, April 7th.  This is the day before spring break.  I know that it's tempting to pull your children out of school early for travel plans, but please make a concerted effort to be in school on April 7th.  The kids love dance class and are so excited to perform for you! It will truly be a performance you will not forget, and neither will they!