History Letter to Parents

Dear Fifth Grade Parents and Guardians,

The fifth grade has entered the Stone Age.  Parents and guardians often ask how they can help their children realize the most productive academic year.  Starting this week, you will have a specific role to play in your son or daughter’s history homework.  During each day’s history class, all students will receive an outline of the material I cover in a lecture from the history textbook, Oxford First Ancient History.  The students should use the outline to present a “lecture” on the material to you.  The purpose of this exercise is to allow students to learn the subject in a variety of ways (listening to me, reviewing the outline, reading the material from the book, and presenting the history verbally to you).  The goal is for students to achieve the highest possible retention.

Feel free to listen to your fifth grade lecturer in any location convenient for you-the car, family room or dining room table are only a few of the possibilities that might work for your family.  As long as you consistently spend five to ten minutes listening, your child will gain the greatest benefit from the history lesson.  Please sign and date the outline immediately after hearing the lecture, so that it is clear to me that your child has completed the history assignment.  The outline should return to the (green) history pocket folder that goes home almost every day to hold history assignments and vocab lists.  By the way, this system should also address the chronic parental frustration that results from asking about the student’s school day, only to hear, “I don’t know.”   

Finally, if you need to contact me, please use e-mail rather than voice mail.  My email address is kmclarn@novaclassical.org.  As you probably know, our phones are located in our classrooms, so privacy is difficult.  During the school day, telephones are off to prevent outside calls from disturbing the class too.  As a result, it is more efficient for teachers to check e-mail, rather than attempting to access voice mail.  I regularly check my e-mail throughout the school day, so it is possible to respond to messages quickly when necessary.  Thank you!



Kathleen McLarn (5A)