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Monday, May 29, 2017

Principal's News



Friday, December 16th is READING ROCKS DAY!

Wear your comfy pajamas and donate a book to kick off our

TASC Book Drive!


On January 9, we will be embarking on a special project, an all

School Book Club called, One School, One Book. 

This program has been funded by the BF PTA! Thank you!


Reading aloud at home is valuable because it better prepares your child to be an effective  reader.  But it is also a fun, worthwhile family activity.  With the One School, One Book  program, we aim to build a community of readers at Benjamin Franklin…  Everyone –  students, teachers and administrative staff will be participating, and we can all reap the  many benefits.

 More information will be coming out in the New Year!





Check out what has been happening in our classrooms!

Kindergarten News!

Kindergarteners are learning, growing, and having fun in kindergarten!  Thank you to our parent volunteers for your help in making center time successful! 

  • In Fundations, we continue to learn our letter names, sounds, and sight words (I, am, me, is, the, like, am, go, it, see and we). 
  • In English Language Arts, we are learning what fiction is, what a noun is, what are the parts of a storybook, what story elements are, and what is the importance of sequencing and retelling a story. 
  • We have begun our ELA centers with a focus on the alphabet, word work, rhyming, syllables, beginning sounds and RAZ kids.  We are becoming better readers while working in our guided reading groups. 
  • We are learning to become authors and illustrators by completing a variety of writing tasks and working in our writing journals.  Our main writing goal at this time is adding details and labeling. 
  • In Math, we are learning how to compare 2D and 3D shapes and comparing length, weight, capacity and numbers 1-10.  Our math centers include Dreambox, file folder games, counting cubes, dice games, number writing, and shape puzzles. 
  • We love being scientists. The students are studying how the sun plays an important role of warming the earth. We are also exploring how to gather information to predict and prepare for severe weather. The students are enjoying learning about the weather and being meteorologists. 
  • In Social Studies, we have learned the meaning and importance of Veteran’s Day and Thanksgiving. 
  • The Kindergarten Team would like to wish you all a very Happy Holiday Season! 

First Grade News! 

  • We are very excited to have ipads for every student in first grade! Students have been using their ipads in all subjects areas!
  • During ELA we will begin our unit on Fables.  It will focus on characters, setting, problem and morals.  We will also begin Fundations Unit 6, learning about base words and suffixes. 
  • In math, we will continue our work on place value using subtraction.
  •  In science we will start our exciting unit on the Rainforest.  We will study animals, layers and climate. This unit will lead up to our study of the holidays and end with our Winter Craft Day on December 22, 2016.      

Second Grade News!

  • Second grade is continuing to enrich the holiday season of Thanksgiving with non- fiction comprehension strategies involving Native Americans and the Pilgrims.  Students were involved in a hands-on program on Native Americans which was presented by Madden Farm early in November.
  • We also studied the folk tale, Stone Soup by comparing two versions and then followed up by having a feast of stone soup prepared by the students.  Next, we will begin the study of communities involving urban, rural and suburban. 
  • In math, we started the study of place value to the thousands. This will include the strategies for adding two digit numbers.  We will continue our use of the tape diagram and number bonds which are new math organizers endorsed by the Common Core curriculum. We concluded our Measurement Unit in Science and had fun with a grow beast experiment.
  • In ELA, the students are learning the writing process through the reading and writing of memoirs.  After creating their own memoir, we will have a day of celebration where we will share our finished pieces of work. Our next genre of study will be fairy tales in which the children will identify the elements of a fairy tale. They will be using their knowledge of the writing process to complete another finished piece of work.

Third Grade News!

  • In ELA, the third grade has been busy reading and writing. Students have recently completed a unit which focuses on how children around the world access books. They have been working hard to provide text-based evidence and strong restates when responding to text-based questions. Additionally, they have been busy identifying main ideas and key details from texts they have read. They are getting ready to explore the culture of Japan through fictional and non-fictional texts.
  • In math, the students have completed units on Place Value, Estimating Sums, and Estimating Differences. They are currently working on a unit called Understanding Multiplication. Within this unit, students will model multiplication and use arrays to multiply. Next, they will move into an Understanding Division unit where students will relate division to subtraction and multiplication.

Fourth Grade News!

The fourth grade students are off and running! There are a lot of exciting things happening in our classrooms.  We are using our chromebooks daily and can’t wait to share our projects with you!

  • In math, we are in the middle of our unit on multiplication and problem solving strategies. All students should be studying their multiplication facts at home.
  • In ELA, the focus has been on reading non-fiction texts and finding the main idea and supporting details. 
  • We are also finishing our unit on the Native American tribes of New York State. The students are identifying how geography influenced their lives and how they used natural resources to meet their needs and wants.
  •  The students are starting the measurement unit in science, where we will be measuring mass, volume, time, temperature and length. 
  • Looking ahead, we have some exciting holiday events planned for the students.  Please see our fourth grade letter for important dates!

Fifth Grade News!

The fifth grade is busy working on studying the human body in science.

  • Recently, every class had the opportunity to have a video conference with a professor/scientist from Saint Louis to learn more about the human body! He was able to demonstrate a human heart, brain, and lungs. The children were able to ask questions and learn how to keep these organs healthy by exercising and not smoking.
  • We also had an assembly organized by our PTA that was from the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia. This assembly was also about the human body and was very interactive, calling for many student volunteers.
  • In ELA, we have been concentrating on narrative writing, focusing on descriptive language. Additionally, we are finishing our study of the novel Esperanza Rising by Pam Munoz Ryan. In our next ELA unit, we will be learning all about how scientists communicate what they learn while studying the rainforest.
  • In mathematics, we are finishing our unit on multiplication and division, as well as numerical expressions.
  • We will be starting fractions in January.

Physical Education News!

Currently in Physical Education, all grades are working on developing their foot-eye and soccer skills. 

  • Students recently finished interactive soccer stations, which gave students a chance to practice passing, dribbling, and punting.  
  • Students have transitioned into soccer games, where the focus is on teaching students the positions in soccer, as well as proper spacing on the field. Previous to our soccer unit, 3rd-5th grade classes had their collaboration and teamwork skills tested in our indoor and outdoor challenge courses. 
  • These challenge courses provided students the opportunity to improve their physical skills in climbing, balance, and coordination; while demonstrating support for their classmates.
  • Students have also participated in various fitness testing such as; a distance run, sit-up and push-up test, a sit and reach, and a shuttle run. These tests help measure components such as cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility, sprinting speed, and agility.

Music News!

Music is in the air! Our Winter Choral concert is next week! We have been working extremely and are excited about the performance. The Concert will be held at Lakeland High School on December 7th at 7:00 pm.

  • All performers need to arrive at 6:30 pm. Singers attire is: white tops and black bottoms (no heels please as they are dangerous on the risers)

Art News!

2016 has been a very busy year in the ART room at Ben Franklin!

  • December is the month when we celebrate the accomplishments of our Gallery One participants! We cheer for those whose work was selected as a finalist and then sent on to be included in the art show at Lakeland Schools District Office, opening on December 6TH!
  • Grade One has enjoyed creating symmetrical marker paintings which reflect what it is like to go for a walk on a rainy day.
  • Grade Two is learning about portraiture and creating their choice of a portrait or Self-Portrait.
  • Grade Three has finished snowmen made of Model Magic, using origami to fold their own boxes to take them home.
  • Grade Four has finished painting gradations of value for their Flying Contraptions and started a Printmaking Unit.
  • Grade 5 has done well with POP ART and OP ART projects. You might have seen some of our giant candies in the ART hallway. They are now embarking on a ceramic project.


What’s happening in the library? Grades K-5

This year in the library, all students began the year with a unit on Digital Citizenship. It is very important for students to prepare for a world where technology is everywhere and to educate students on how to navigate the Internet in a positive way, Students learned about staying safe online, visiting appropriate websites and cyberbullying.

Kindergarten-Children is kindergarten have been learning the Ben Franklin library routine of selecting books and signing them out. We have also had lessons about the parts of a book and what authors and illustrators do.  Children have also been learning the difference between fiction and non-fiction and the composition of a non-fiction book. Most recently, we have begun a Mo Willems author study.

First Grade-Children in first grade have been identifying the difference between fiction and non-fiction books. They have also been learning about the Table of Contents, Glossary and Index found in non-fiction books. Most recently, students began an author study of Robert Munsch.

Grades 2-5 Keyboarding with accuracy and speed is an essential skill in our society. Students in grades 2- 5 are using the Typing Agent keyboarding program to help learn this skill. Typing Agent puts an emphasis on keyboarding accuracy while the student maintains proper finger placement and posture. Each student progresses at their own rate. The program provides a cycle of review, demonstration, practice and assessment.



IMPORTANT:  WINTER Note from Mrs. Malia, School Nurse

Winter is here and so are colds and flu.  The flu and the common cold are both respiratory illnesses but they are caused by different viruses. In general, the flu is worse than the common cold, and symptoms such as fever, body aches, extreme tiredness, and dry cough are more common and intense. Colds are usually milder than the flu.

  • Check with your healthcare provider regarding the flu vaccine each season.
  • Remind your children hand washing is the best way to stop the spread of germs. 
  • Please encourage the use of tissues, cough etiquette and hand washing. 
  • You don’t want your child to miss school:  but neither do you want to send a sick child to school and endanger him or her as well as other children and staff.

If your child shows any symptoms of illness:

  • Temperature over 100?, flu-like symptoms, vomiting or GI issues, sore throat that interferes with swallowing, ear pain, colored eye drainage, suspicious or draining rash.
  • Please keep him/her home. A child who is sick will not be able to perform well in school. Notify your healthcare provider if there is no improvement.
  • Absences should be called in daily before 8:30 am. 
  • When your child returns to school a note must be sent to the classroom teacher stating reason student was absent.

Children may not return to school unless:

  • They are fever free for 24 hours WITHOUT medication for fever
  • They have not vomited for 24 hours
  • A FULL 24 hours has passed since their first dose of antibiotic for strep throat or a skin infection.

During the school day if your child is ill and/or found to have flu like symptoms parents/guardians will be called to pick up student.

  • Please have updated contact numbers on file. Emergency contacts should be local and available to pick up students promptly.
  • When parents call to report an absence, please identify the illness your child is experiencing including symptoms


In the event your child is injured requiring an ER/Urgent Care visit or has had surgery please inform the School Nurse.

  • A MD note must be sent in stating that the student can return to school with or without restrictions.
  • If crutches are needed during the school day a note is needed by your Health Care Provider.



Every attempt is made to have outdoor recess!  This is an important time to get exercise, fresh air and have some needed playtime.  Students are generally outside for 20 minutes so hats, gloves and warm winter jackets are essential. Make sure your child is prepared with warm outerwear.   Label all outerwear items.

Thanks for your cooperation.

Keep Healthy!





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last updated: 12/19/16