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Volume 3, Issue 1 December 2013


Message from the Principal couldn’t have been otherwise. Our talented multi-national student body adding daily spice and colorful flavor to our school, led by the expertise of our teachers outbid themselves.

Daily life here at ACS Athens Elementary continues to be pleasantly full, charmingly noisy, academically challenging and highly productive. I am certain that most of you had the opportunity to witness a number of successful presentations and/or activities which took place in our school during the first trimester of this academic year. Noteworthy events such as UN Day, OXI Day, the Pumpkin Patch Exhibition, the Halloween Carnival, and the Winter Concert not only created a festive atmosphere enjoyed by all, but were also huge successes. Knowing how hard our students and faculty members had worked for these presentations it

First trimester report cards will be posted on Skyward Family Educator Access for all of our students. Thank you for helping us in our effort to make our environment green. For updates or changes in our calendar, please check our website at Visiting our website is a quick and easy method to stay informed. Also please be reminded that Elementary School parents now have access to moodle where you can find documents such as the Elementary School Handbook as well as the Curriculum at a Glance. Furthermore, The Muse, our newsletter will also be available on the website at the end of each trimester. There you can be you informed about all the wonderful learning experiences your children have participated in throughout each trimester. The last day of school before our holiday break is December 20th. Classes resume January 7th, 2014. During this time of feasting, holiday leisure and fun, I strongly encourage parents to urge their child/children to read,

as much as they can. The fascinating world of reading unveils before our startled eyes all the mysteries of the world. I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your support during the past year and for your continued interest in your child’s progress in school. Wishing you all the holiday and a very happy New Year! Sincerely, Cathy Makropoulos Principal ACS Athens is a student-centered international school, embracing American educational philosophy, principles and values. Through excellence in teaching and diverse educational experiences, ACS Athens challenges all students to realize their unique potential: academically, intellectually , socially and ethically — to thrive as responsible global citizens.

Junior Kindergarten News Happy December to everyone! It is an exciting time in Junior Kindergarten as we explore the magic of winter and all its celebrations. Your child will bring home art work, projects and other wonderful things to share with you. Take the time to discuss these activities with your child. A lot of time and effort are put into these projects and it’s important to show your child that their work at school is important to you as well.

depending on where they are going and concepts related to street safety. Furthermore, we have been reviewing terms related to people involved with each mode of transportation (i.e. driver, passenger, captain, pilot, conductor, etc.) as well as where each mode of transportation parks (i.e. garage, port, airport, train/bus station). Please review these concepts with your child and help them identify these terms in their environment, as this is the best way to make their learning at school meaningful.

The children have been busy at school as we have been discussing the different means of transportation, why they may choose one mode over another

The children are also busy learning many concepts, and skills including colors, shapes, numbers, patterns, and so much more through games and large group discussions.

They have also been doing a wonderful job on practicing their communication skills with their peers and with their teachers, as they rotate through our center-based activities as well as participate in our whole group activities. We are very proud of them! In class we continually talk about showing proper behavior by using listening ears, careful eyes, quiet feet and still hands. Please support us by encouraging the same behavior at home, and, as always, please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns you may have!!! Ms. Korinna and Ms. Vicki

Kindergarten News The children have been adjusting very well to the new challenges of Kindergarten such as taking more responsibility through unpacking their bags, cleaning up their tables, playing nicely together and sharing. During this first trimester they have been working on letter names, sounds and vocabulary. During Halloween week, the children put together 3 sounds to begin forming words like bat, sat, cat, etc. They are reading high frequency words in their

decodable books. In Math, we have been covering many concepts during our morning calendar. We have been working on number recognition and fluency from numbers 1-10. We are also using manipulatives to show that numbers represent quantities and to create patterns and structures. Additionally, we have been busily graphing the weather each morning, as well as recording our likes and dislikes. We then discuss our data and decide which is

more, less, or equal. We completed our first unit “I Am Special” and went on our field trip to the Children’s Museum in Plaka. There we got to learn more about ourselves through hands-onactivities related to creating and extending patterns, organizing a house, shopping, playing with water and feasting on cookies that we baked on the premises. Our next unit of study is “Trees”. We will begin by

Kindergarten News... taking a schoolyard walk to observe, smell and touch the many trees we have right here at school. We will encounter olive, conifers, palm, lemon, and mulberry trees. They are all different but have the same structure including branches, leaves, trunks and roots. One of our projects is to adopt a tree and plant it at school. We will then explore trees and leaves more closely as we determine how they are affected by seasonal changes. We look forward to continuing our adventure of fun and learning throughout the school year. Ms. Anna and Ms. Stavi

1st Grade News Hello to All, and especially our Fantastic First Grade Parents! We completed our first trimester, enjoying our year thus far, as children have settled into the classroom routines and have become responsible and respectful first graders. Children are making great strides and effort in their writing. As growth in reading and writing are closely united, it is imperative to continue positively reinforcing children and boosting their self esteem throughout all their endeavors, both at home and at school. Remember that at this stage in your child’s writing, using phonetic awareness for inventive spelling, environmental print, sight word spelling and word walls are all part of the process. We want to congratulate the enthusiasm your children have shown for their new Bonus Book Bag reading incentive. Keep up the daily oral reading to improve fluency, comfort, self-esteem and enjoyment for the written word. Our dinosaur unit has definitely provided fodder for the imagination in journal stories and on the playground as well as special sharing projects. The rehearsals for our Dino-Daze play have been amazing! We thank you for helping your children practice their lines

at home. We hope you share in the excitement and success of each and every effort made during the process of our much-acclaimed dinosaur play. Our parent volunteers have been simply wonderful in helping prepare the bases for the Dino-Daze head pieces. Once again, we look forward to seeing you on Thursday, December 19th at 9:00 for Dino-Daze! A sneak peek into the near future will reveal a common thread based on our discussion of dinosaur extinction – we will be s t u d y i n g a b o u t contemporary endangered and extinct animals. On a lighter note, we are looking forward to the Christmas Holidays- a time for giving- so all of us are looking forward to choosing a “Secret Santa”. However, it won’t be such a secret! Your child will soon be pulling a name of a peer out of a hat for which they will be putting a gift under our classroom Christmas tree. The gift will be an English storybook. Feel free to wrap up a new book or a used book (in good condition, of course). Also, rest assured, we will paste the name of the student you will be giving the book to in your child’s passport. Please have your gifts delivered by Friday, December 13th.

1st Grade News... Speaking of the holiday season, in school, we focus on holidays presented in the United States. In order to enrich our curriculum, we remind you of our open invitation to present your favorite holiday from your heritage to share with your child’s homeroom (does not necessarily need to fall on the date of the holiday). Again, just let us know which holiday you will be presenting and your preferred date. So far, we have had a few parents in already and are looking forward to Olive Harvesting, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas and more… Saving the best for last, Captain Chip and your children have made such an amazing connection and we are delighted to have your support in this endeavor. Not only is Captain Chip an inspiration in self-esteem he is also inspiring children to read to him and write about him and more over, care and empathize with others. This is truly wonderful and you all should be as proud of your children as we are of them! We look forward to our year ahead with all of you. Ms. Birbil, Ms. Lamprou and Ms. Safaris

2nd Grade News Second graders h a v e really c o m e i n t o t h e i r own this first trimester! Here are some of the things we have been learning about and working on so far: In Mathematics, we have created, read and interpreted several kinds of graphs. We also began to work on numeracy, or fluency with numbers, by practicing basic addition skills. Second graders worked with, decomposed and modeled 2– and 3– digit number and gained conceptual understanding of how and why numbers or digits are written as they are. In Literacy, we read many narratives by various authors including Patricia Polacco and then used what we learned from the authors to write our own personal narratives. We focused on zooming in on a small moment, expanding our stories with details and telling a complete story with beginning, middle and end. Second graders are enjoying Word Wok as well as they gain a better command of English and spelling patterns.

In Science and Social Studies, we experimented with air and weather patterns. We observed changes in the sky during the day and at night and learned about air pressure as well. We began our Social Studies unit on community with the UN Show as a kickoff event and will continue to learn about citizens, citizenship, maps and cultures near and far. Ms. Merrill, Ms. Moros and Ms. Spiliot

3rd Grade News Third graders this first trimester have been bursting with excitement and busy as can be in their individual and group learning experiences. We started off the year with our writers workshop focusing on personal narratives and using seed ideas to describe an important moment or happening in our lives. We will also be writing to pen pals in Seattle, Washington to exchange information about our community in Greece and in return learn about their community in Seattle, WA, USA. These students are learning about Greece in their unit of inquiry and really want to know what life is like for a third grader living here. We are looking forward to this exchange. In readers workshop, we have worked on choosing just right books so that we can engage effectively in our reading and apply strategies such as reading fast and strong, pausing to reflect or ask “huh?�, reread, learn new words by reading afterwards to make a connection, make a movie in our mind while reading, immerse ourselves in the characters and

empathize with them. These are some of the many ways we are working on our reading everyday along with partner sharing, read alouds and discussions and our reading groups with selected texts. In Math, we started out with place value, rounding, then adding and subtracting with regrouping. We have gone head on into multiplication and are finding patterns and even tricks to help us learn our facts in a fun and interesting way. We solve problems and are thinking of real world problems to apply our math in practical ways. For Social Studies, we completed our chapters on Geography, Physical Geography and Immigration. We identified continents, oceans, the meridians, hemispheres, and looked at physical maps and special purpose maps. The big hit was the immigration game! We tried to keep our cool and develop an understanding of how it feels to come to a new country and try to make a better life for our family. We picked up very quickly how it feels to be discriminated against which was the point. Now each class is into their

science units. Third grade teachers will each teach the same unit all year so each class will be doing Sound (physical science), Earth Materials (earth science) or Human Body (life science) at different times of the year. They are all wonderful units and involve hands on investigations so the students can use scientific thinking processes by observing, communicating, comparing and organizing. Mr. Maloff, Ms. Mukri and Ms. Theodoropoulou

4th Grade News The first part of the trimester found the 4th graders learning by doing!! In the Science Unit of Structures of Life, students learned about the life cycles of plants and animals. Students were fascinated with this unit as they had the opportunity to watch small bean seeds turn into enormous plants and examine snail structures! In Regions of Our Country, students have been thinking as social scientists, economists, geographers, and political scientists! They have been reading, writing, and using their newly developed MAP skills to learn detailed information about what makes the U.S.A such as a beautiful and diverse country. In Language Arts, 4th graders had the opportunity to delve into all the details that make a personal narrative interesting and appealing to their readers. Moreover, our students have learned to closely examine a text and discuss how they feel connected to the text, to discern the story plot from the moral of the story, and make statements about the text with the use of supporting details from the story. Finally, in Math we have been reviewing the importance of place value and how knowledge of place value can help us solve addition, subtraction, and multiplication problems. In addition, we have been paying special attention to the

promotion of critical thinking skills. We have given and we will be giving our students numerous opportunities to solve novel problems that require the use of strategies that have been thoroughly practiced in class. Thank you for your continuous support. Lastly, please encourage your child to visit any of the sites below! Thank you, Ms. Killam, Ms. Koutsioukis, and Ms. Vagras Language Arts: James Patterson’s Read Kiddo Read This site is the brainchild of author, James Patterson. His goal is to help parents and educators connect children with books that will turn them into lifelong readers. The site is colorful, easy to navigate, the titles are hand-picked by qualified professional, and there are links to websites for these people as well. Grammar Gorillas - http:// grammar/ Spelling: Online Spelling Program Online Spelling Program offers over 38,000 spelling words and eight spelling games, k-12 spelling lists are

offered. One can select lists by age, sounds, Dolch lists, and topics, and more. You can customize your own word lists and create games and puzzles. Woodlands Junior School index.htm Topmarks english-games/7-11-years/ punctuation Math: World of Math Online World of Math Online by Leap of Faith Financial Services, Inc.: dedicated to providing a variety of ways for students, parents, teachers to learn math. Included are assessments, on -demand modular courses, 24/7 live online tutoring, lesson plans, links to worksheets, drill & practice opportunities, expert answers to math questions, and more. Education Place mhm Education Place by Houghton Mifflin: a good site to practice ITBS test-taking skills for math. Other nice offerings are strategies and immediate feedback. Plus, it’s fun! FunBrain numbers.html

4th Grade News ... Woodlands Junior School fractions/ Topmarks maths-games/7-11-years/ fractions-and-decimals Animals/Wildlife National Geographic for Kids Online *Defenders of Wildlife – Kid’s Planet Defenders of Wildlife, Washington DC: This is an award winning site and one of the “great sites for kids”! Features: description of endangered species and also lists species by continent, thorough fact sheet on each animal, some animals have photographs and a video clip, great games, stories, excellent teacher’s resource with lesson plans along with activities and more games. There is a place on each page to adopt an animal. There is a separate info section on the World Wide Wolf efforts with information and curriculum for teachers to create a unit. This is an excellent site. Enjoy! Ms. Killam, Ms. Koutsoukis and Ms. Vagras

5th Grade News “I honor you!” These were the words of our first literary hero, the brave, little mouse, in the novel, Despereaux. Fifth graders have started the year honorably, demonstrating that they are responsible, caring students and good role models for younger children. Through discussions and writing assignments about our class literature book, Despereaux, students are examining qualities that make writing excellent. They have already learned literary terms to critique a novel and numerous reading strategies during our very popular Reading Workshop, the favorite part of the day for many of our students! The special feature of this cycle of lessons in our reading program is that students participate in a mini lesson focused on a reading skill before having time to read independently from self selected literature. Students then apply the skills learned in class in their reading log for homework. We are proud to see our 5th graders building reading stamina and learning the love of reading. Fifth graders have been learning how to write well while they acquired knowledge about their first unit of study, Exploration. Additionally, students started researching and finding facts about individual explorers.

They practiced paraphrasing information, taking notes, and organizing them into logical, sequential paragraphs to create a simple research project and an explorer booklet. Students used their notes on their famous explorers to write a lively persuasive essay, “In defense of the Great Explorer ___________.” Fifth grade students have finished their research on explorers and prepared their individual oral presentation to share with other students. Additionally, they have been studying geographical locations and plotting longitude and latitude coordinates. These skills will be useful for fifth graders to understand international connections, identify countries and continents, and locate the journeys of different explorers on maps. Definitely we have all seen how exciting those early days of exploration must have been! Our new unit of study is Mixtures and Solutions, an introduction to lab work and chemistry. Everyone enjoys the hands on science labs and the opportunity to work collaboratively in teams. As part of this unit of study, students will research an element and share their information with the class! Ms. Coklas, Ms. Kynigou and Ms Maratou

Optimal Learning News Following all the updates on learning, lessons and skills, and thinking of the upcoming holidays, I’d like to share an article called “Let the Children Play” by Stuart Brown, who is the founder of the National Institute of Play and author of “Play: How it Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul”. In his article for the International Herald Tribune, he gives us information on why playing is so vital a ‘skill’. He wrote this article, at a time when children return to school, and although many students are eager to see their friends, they are also very aware that “playtime is over”. Brown sadly states that the ‘goof-off’ opportunities that come with summer are not as frequent, and are even eliminated from the ‘over-organized, cell phone — computer — TV — and — video — game structured days’ of winter. Brown adds that although children of the past were able to go outside to play and romp, children of today spend “50% less time outside than they did 20 years ago”! The loss of outside play, he states after following more than 6,000 detailed play histories, has resulted in “childhood obesity, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, increase in childhood depression, and classroom behavioral problems”. What is most interesting to me, is that it also affects the ability to interact well with peers. He claims that games such as chase, hide —

and — seek and playing ball allow children to learn how not to be excluded from group situations and that they provide ‘intense skill learning’. Brown mentions studies across the various disciplines (neuroscience, psychology, and developmental biology to name a few) that focus their attention on playfulness. Mammals ranging from monkeys to rats, need their rough and tu mble so that the y understand their role and position within their group. Similarly, play offers opportunities for children to adapt to changing variables, to innovate and enhance their intellectual skills, and to do better academically in the long run. He also mentions how these skills evolve, so that in adulthood very difficult and ‘deadlocked’ situations have been avoided because of a joke, or a humorous incident (which stem from playfulness). “Play is an active process that reshapes our rigid views of the world”, and since it has been found that the smarter the mammal, the more it plays, we must insist that our y o u ng have the opportunity to get in touch with themselves, and to “experience the joy of life”. After all, play is…. fun.

So, although we are all trapped by grueling after school schedules, let us not allow active play to be a thing of the past, and let us find ways for our children to run out and play, to goof-off, to rough-and-tumble, to romp outside – and let us run out with them. Ms. Kaldelli & Ms. Sinouris

News from the Art Room Greetings from the Art room! Our year started w i t h artworks related to our United Nations show. In Kindergarten we created a giant head of Medusa using the cool colors for the snakes and face. In First grade we explored the idea of a landscape with a horizon line using watercolor and pen. Our Second graders created colorful collages of famous monuments or styles of architecture from their countries. Third graders in Ms. Mukri and Mr. Maloff’s classes studied traditional dress and used their knowledge to make costumes for paper puppets while Mrs. Theodoropoulou’s class used tissue paper and cardstock to make scarab beetle forms. Fifth graders collaborated on large maps, each one presenting a different characteristic of their country.

We will continue throughout the year working with the Principles of Design and Elements of Art to create both 2D and 3D artworks in a variety of media. Most recently Kindergarten has been focusing on different types of line and the primary colors. First grade has been working on the four seasons in four different media and will soon be painting their Dino Daze headdresses.

Second grade recently finished animal self portraits using texture painting and collage. Our Third graders successfully completed warm and cool color abstract paintings with silhouette forms. Fourth graders are putting the finishing touches on very detailed cityscape collages. And Fifth graders are moving on from their accordion assemblages to start a sculpture unit using wire and wood. Keep your eyes peeled for installations and displays around school! Ms. Stauffer

ESL News I am thrilled with the progress students have made these past three months and am excited to see continued growth in their abilities to more fully understand and communicate their ideas in English! Way to go! 1st &2nd grade After having learned or revised the English alphabet (through the booklet “Look, I can read”), 1st and 2nd graders (beginners) are now able to read CVC words and several sight words (that frequently appear in texts); they are always eager to read the stories from the “Starfall” series and work in the workbooks. Besides reading, they are expanding their vocabulary on units of study we focus on every week; so far we have worked on thematically based words connected to the body parts, the weather and the seasons and the days of the week, feelings, the colors and the clothes and also the food; they have managed to acquire many words through rhyming, singing, playing and story reading; they love it when we play charades, trying to guess what each one is doing, thus working on verbs and grammar at the same time! Great job 1st and 2nd grade! 3rd , 4th & 5th grade Using realia and role playing with 3rd, 4th and 5th graders has been really fun! Students are asked to pretend to be somewhere else, outside the

classroom and find themselves in a situation where they need to use the thematically based vocabulary given (“It’s on the tip of my tongue”) and solve a problem at the same time, either in written or oral speech! They had lots of fun when they pretended to be at the restaurant and had complaints from the waiter or when they were asked to become reporters writing a newspaper article about a natural disaster that stroke a city!


Besides working on this and their textbooks and workbooks, 3rd, 4th and 5th grades work on grammar as well, through the method of noticing; no rules are given to be learned, but students try to find a pattern through repetition of grammatical structures and syntax, so that they understand the “how” and the “when” something is used. But not only that! They learn their grammar though rhyming, too, as this is an effective way for young learners to remember and consolidate new concepts! Here’s the song on plurals, so sing along with your child!

With - es is all you see!

The plural rhyme, by Venie Gaki -o -s

-ch -x Add one syllable, add –es Consonant and –y, Don’t be confused Add the –ies cause –y is not used! -f or –fe in the end Don’t you worry, don’t you bend! v for victory come with me

Last, but not least, please continue encouraging your child to practice their English outside school! Reading a book together in English is a great way to familiarize your child with old and new words while also working on comprehension. The internet has some fantastic sources, like for reading material or you can h a ve fu n to ge th e r at Ms. Gaki

News from the Computer Lab! The ACS elementary technology class is aimed at exposing our students to various applications which combine technology with the current classroom lessons. This creates continuity and keeps them engaged in their learning. This year ACS students joined a massive campaign to prepare students for the 21st century during Computer Science Education Week (Dec 8-14). Third, fourth and fifth graders learned and practiced programming skills in the elementary technology lab. The Hour of Code campaign aims to introduced 10 million students to one hour of computer science. You can view this video about the Hour of Code event: http:// CodeOrg Our kindergarteners have been using the website to work on language and mathematics. They have been practicing alphabet awareness, beginning phonics, counting and number sequencing with this site. They also had fun with drawing on the computer with Tux Paint to create some spooky Halloween pumpkins! In connection with the unit on Dinosaurs, first grade students s went on a virtual dinosaur dig from the

S mithsonian National Museum of Natural History. T h e y b e c a m e o n l i n e paleontologists. They also used to reassemble some dinosaurs and to determine if they were plant or meat eaters. In addition they have been using Starfall to work on counting and regrouping numbers. Second grade students researched information on their country for United Nations Day. They even went on a virtual tour of Paris and saw the city from the Eiffel Tower. They are currently learning about different occupations in a community with /commclub/ with read along books. Third grade students are using http:// file s/re source s/ i n t e r a c t i v e s / Printing_Press/ to make brochures for a country that they are learning about. They also began

practicing keyboarding with Type to Learn.


F ourth grade studen ts just completed PowerPoint presentations about themselves. They had to write about their interests, family and add birth information. They also had to import pictures into their presentations and add transitions to their slides. They are also using, interactive social studies textbooks, to read about places and regions of the United States and to answer comprehension questions. Fifth graders were introduced to digital citizenship and online safety. They can now log into Moodle, ACS’ virtual learning environment, to access information that is posted there. They have also co ndu cte d re se ar ch fo r their explorer unit. Fifth graders are also signed up for an online typing program They are encouraged to practice their keyboarding skills throughout the year. Ms. Sarantes

News from the Music Room percussion instruments. All students have developed their creative self and their confidence through various music making activities. Rhythm and appreciation of music through the use of percussion instruments and body percussion have also been key features of lessons this trimester. My idea is that there is music in the air, music all around us; the world is full of it, and you simply take as much as y o u r e q u i r e . ~ Edward Elgar Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent. ~ Victor Hugo ACS students welcomed again this year with music from around t he world. First grade performed music from the Caribbean. Second grade played African drums a n d s a n g s o n g s from different parts of Africa. Third grade were introduced to recorders and explored Chinese music. Fourth grade continued developing their recorder skills through the performance of Greek music. Fifth grade explored Russian music and performed using tuned percussion instruments. Our kindergarteners used games to learn the meaning of some of the elements of music such as pitch and dynamics. They developed their learning and understanding of elements through playing tuned and untuned

Integrated to the music curriculum this trimester was also the United Nations Show. Students were taught and eventually executed with great success dances from a variety of countries. A very well done to all students involved and a very big thank you to Ms. Salouros who came up with the idea and who was in charge of the whole event! With great excitement students are now eagerly preparing for our Winter Concert. The nature of this show is yet again very different from previous shows and a great deal of new learning and musical understanding is involved. This year again opportunity will be offered to our 4th and 5th grade students to perform Christmas carols during the PTO Bazaar. Presentation and performance on stage are key skills that all musicians need to possess. At ACS Elementary School we aim to give as many

opportunities as possible to our students to showcase their work, their talents, to boost their self confidence, and to express their emotions through music, dance, and acting. Ms. Apostolou

“REACHING for the TOP IN P.E.” Extra extra read all about it

and their spectacular performance. Soon after the We got the best Elementary team s h o w , s tu de n ts accumulated skills in There’s no doubt about it throwing and catching. They learned all about the The future, the future different types of throws Yes, we can predict the future and in which sports or activities they can be used. We can look ahead in time They also learned how to catch appropriately and And what do we see? affectively. Students are A great and fun P.E. school year now able to see the With lots and lots of activity! relationship and connection between eye and hand All Elementary students have coordination. been super busy since the beginning of the school year. All across the nation During the beginning of the month of September, students There’s a basketball sensation were learning and executing That makes you want to slide d i f f e re n t l o c o mo to r , n o n And move from side to side locomotor and manipulative skills. They learned how to Come on, let’s rock perform these skills appropriately and how these skills are relevant Come on, let’s roll to their physical performance. Students were also introduced to Let’s boogie on down to the other side of town individual rope jumping skills. They were highly challenged in Let’s turn this game upside learning how to turn and jump a down! self-turned rope. Currently in November, During the months of September students have begun to and October, exciting buzzes also acquire basketball skills. filled the P.E. classes as students They are performing various learned many different folk drills to further improve dances from various countries their skills in basketball. around the world for the United Students are learning all Nations Show. They expanded about dribbling, chest their lifelong values and passes, fouls, rebounds, behaviors as they experienced the traveling, etc. They are eabeautiful diversity that fills our ger to learn the rules and school. regulations involved in basketball, and they want The show was a hit, and we were to showcase them on the so very proud of our students court!

During all of the P.E. u ni ts, students are realizing even more the necessary value of teamwork. C h a r a c te r education is an essential part of sports, and students are shaping their sportsmanship attitude and behavior by noting that it takes more than one person to make a team. Students, through each and every physical education unit, are being exposed to and taught about the six components of character education: fairness, responsibility, citizenship, trustworthiness, caring, and respectfulness. They are learning to display these traits not only in P.E. class, but in their entire world. The students are continuously being challenged to open up their horizon and see how many different and unique sports are played all around the world. They are so enthusiastic to learn, and I enjoy watching them mature into fantastic athletes and citizens. So let’s all celebrate our healthy minds, bodies, and souls, and remind students that: How you play shows some of your character. How you win or lose shows ALL of it! Ms. Salouros Kourtis



News from the Greek Classes The first months of school have been very productive for Greek classes. Besides working on speaking, reading, spelling, grammar and vocabulary, students have been doing a wonderful job learning about OXI Day. Our 4th graders had a very exciting time presenting the historical account of OXI Day, at the ACS Theater. All other grades (JK-5) worked on poems, songs and various texts, according to level. Special thanks to parents who encouraged students to make the most of this learning experience.

grammar activities.

In the month of November, besides their regular work on language:

The Greek Language Beginning/Intermediate classes have been working on thematically based vocabulary, reading, writing and speaking according to grade and level.

The Greek Language Arts and Advanced classes, grades 3-5 worked on their history books: 3rd grade Mythology, 4th grade Ancient Greek History and 5th grade Byzantine history. Our JK students worked on the unit: “All about me”, “Feelings” and listened to relevant stories. They also learned Greek poems and songs. KG students learned the letters of the alphabet and a song for each letter. In grade 1, students worked hard on reading and writing. In grade 2, students worked on reading, writing and

In grades 3 – 5, apart from the thematically based vocabulary, students learn through the dialogues and texts that their books contain. They have also started working on basic grammar rules that refer to the article, the gender of the nouns and the adjectives, thus improving their speaking and writing. Kindergarten students have learned vocabulary connected to everyday school instructions, colors, shapes, wild and domestic animals through various games, songs, stories and activities. They are currently learning about objects in the classroom.

In grade 1, we have worked on the units of fruit, vegetable, food, everyday instructions, objects in the classroom and animals; students are also working on the letters of the alphabet (focus is placed on sound) and learn how to write the letters with the help of rhymes that tell them what the letters look like (riddle – rhyme game). Students in grade 1 are also working on what to say on various occasions through role playing games, such as “at the greengrocer’s” and “at the tavern”. In grade 2, students are working on copying words and reading short dialogues with words from the thematically based vocabulary they are taught in class. In all grades students are encouraged to borrow books from the Greek classroom library. Well done to all our hardworking students! Ms. Papageorgiou, Ms. Rovoli and Ms. Stratoglou

News from the Arabic Classes The Arabic classes have started the school year full of enthusiasm and learning. Our friendly classroom welcomes grades KG through 5. In the month of October, the Parent-Teacher conferences in the Arabic class were very positive and showed the appreciation of both parents and students regarding the Arabic language and the learning experience at the elementary school.

In the current month, students have been busy expanding skills in speaking, reading, writing, vocabulary and spelling. Through various activities and projects, learning is fun and students look forward to coming to the Arabic class to le arn so me thi ng ne w everyday! Ms Lamia Accari

News from the Library Library class was off to a good start this year with our “My Summer” cards that the second and third graders wrote. The fourth and fifth graders extended this by writing a paragraph using some of the information in their cards. We are reading two of these cards or paragraphs each week to guess whose card we are reading and to learn about what we each did during the summer. In JK, K and 1st grade we read a story about summer and talked about what we each did during the summer. This year in association with UN Day we read a folk tale from or a story about the children in the countries that each class’s dance was from. We are also reading non-fiction books related to the science and social

studies units that each grade level is studying in class, e.g. transportation for JK, weather for second grade, and elements for fifth grade. The t h i r d , fourth and f i f t h graders are beginning to learn how to use the ACS Library system to find books in the library and how to use our online Britannica resource. We read spooky stories for Halloween and talked about how we could write a spooky story and for Thanksgiving we learned about a Thanksgiving celebration that took place in the wild west round 1900. At the end of each class we are helping the students find at least one book that is at the

student’s reading level. We would appreciate your help in making sure that they are bringing home books that they can read and understand. Please let us know if this is not the case. We hope this will help them begin to develop a lifelong desire to keep reading. Ms. Anderson

Muse Newsletter - Dec. 2013  
Muse Newsletter - Dec. 2013  

ACS Athens Elementary School presents the Muse Newsletter - Dec. 2013