Lava Beds Trip is Sept 29th!

The Modoc Indians in the Lava BedsThe fourth and fifth grade classes will be taking an extended day field trip to the Lava Beds National Monument near Tule Lake, California (just south of the border from Klamath Falls) on THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29th. Students will be exploring volcanic caves and learning about the history of the Modoc Indians. Your child will need to be at CPE at 7:30 a.m. The bus departs promptly at 7:50 a.m. We will return to CPE at 5:45 p.m. Students can be picked up at the back of the building on the corner of Ash and 2nd Streets. Please be prompt in picking up your child. If your child is going to ride home with someone else or will be walking home on his or her own, please notify me prior to the trip.


lava-tubeWhile we’re often able to find grant money to cover transportation expenses, we are not able to do so for this trip. Instead, students will each need to contribute $4 (to the front office by Wednesday the 28th). Note that the National Park Service waves its park entrance fee for us. Also, because field trip approval appears on CPE’s registration materials, there is no need to complete a permission slip. Instead, please notify me if you DON’T want your child attending. Thanks.


Students will need to bring the following items on the day of the trip:
sack lunch plus several healthy snacks for the bus ride both to and from
water bottle (water only, no carbonated drinks or sports drinks)
flashlight (with good batteries; test before the field trip, please)
• bicycle helmet for head protection in the caves (REQUIRED)
sturdy shoes such as tennis shoes or hikers (no sandals or open toed shoes due to the rough, sharp terrain)
warm clothes (dress in layers; long pants, gloves, hat) It’s 42 degrees inside the caves.


Electronic games, MP3 players, and cell phones will be allowed for use on the bus, and cell phones and cameras are welcome for taking photos throughout the trip. However, their care and security are each student’s responsibility.


If you would like to join us on this marvelous trip, please let me know right away. We need at least 6 adults to supervise small groups of students on the bus, while eating lunch, and during the exploration. Adults must be willing and able to enter the caves, stay with their group at all times, and enforce basic behavior expectations including cleaning up after lunch. We prefer that chaperones ride the bus, but we’ll work with you. Chaperones must have a volunteer app on file with the front office. If you wish to chaperone and haven’t filled out an app in the last two years, please do so right away, as it takes a week or longer to process.

This is a great trip with excellent learning opportunities! To get a taste, check out this short video from a previous excursion.

All Aboard the Coast Bus!

nudibranch_white.png.adapt.945.1.jpgWednesday morning promptly at 7 a.m. we’ll be loading up and heading out on our 5th Grade Ocean Adventure!  Kids took home their cargo lists and itinerary, and they’re busy in class presenting their tide pool research projects, which will make each of them an expert on a creature of the tidal zone. One of my favorite is the nudibranch. Think slug–just like those monsters you find munching on the hostas in your garden–but adorned in a fascinating array of shapes and colors. It is always a highlight to spot a nudibranch on the Oregon Coast. Be sure to send your kids with everything on the cargo list, including a sack lunch for Wednesday’s bus ride. As in previous years, we have one adult for every three kids going, so our students will be well-supervised. If you have any questions or concerns, e-mail me at

Science, Snowshoes, and Sledding

We're looking for sleds like these.Thank you to all who attended Exhibition and/or parent-teacher conferences. “Exhibition” was an experiment and is a work-in-progress, so we welcome feedback as to how it worked for you. We’re not personally or professionally vested in it so we’re 100% open to both your criticism and your compliments.

Students who didn’t attend will be receiving their report cards and work samples tomorrow (Monday). The report card consists of our A-F “Supplement” and progress report showing individual assignments.

Or these.On Monday, April 4th (a week from tomorrow) we’re off to Crater Lake for our annual snowshoe hike, science stations, and sled fest. This is another fantastic field trip. If you’d like to join us as a chaperone, please let me know ASAP. All you need to do is make sure you have a volunteer form on file with the school office and dress for the snow.  Student permission/info sheets will go home this week.

We also need sleds of the simple plastic or Styrofoam kind (no old fashioned ones with metal parts, please). If you have one you can loan us, please put your name on it and send it in this week. Thanks.

Have a great week.

Another Br’er Hit!

The Br’er Rabbit cast reprised their musical performance at the all-school assembly last Thursday and were once again a big hit. Though the video isn’t HD, its well worth watching. Be sure to pay attention to the marvelous dialects and subtle intonations that many of the actors deliver. And of course, the real magic is in the music.

Room 15 Update for Jan. 24

brer-rabbit-and-brer-fox-4Congrats to our History Jeopardy Champions: Jaden R., Jaden F., Braydan, Alyssa, McKenna, Vane, and Courtney. They finished Final Jeopardy with $11,200. The students subsequently took their 2nd Trimester History exam and hits a respectable class average of 70%.

Last week students tried out for parts in the Brer Rabbit musical, which is to be presented at Literacy Night in late February. After much consideration, the following were selected: Olivia: Auntie Remus; Peyton: April; Sophie Q.: June (Will); Sidney: Brer Rabbit; Jorden: Brer Wolf; Yuri: Brer Fox; Abigail: Brer Bear; LaKenya: Brer Mouse; Allie: Brer Dog; Kaysi: Brer Coon; Kara: Brer Mink; Hailee H.: Brer Polecat; Haylee B.: Miz Meadows. Kudos to all the kids who put themselves out there in an attempt to earn a part. Those who didn’t succeed will be asked to be understudies and members of the chorus. Students will be practicing at lunch, during our computer and library times, and possibly after-school. Students are expected to memorize their lines and assemble their own costume. More info to follow.

We start new Language Arts groups on Wednesday. While we’ll continue to work on vocabulary, reading, and basic writing, the emphasis during this quarter will be on significant writing projects in preparation for standardized-testing. We’ll also be sending home progress reports covering the last 9 weeks by Tuesday, February 2nd, of not sooner.

The classroom hockey tourney is underway. We generally have games on Monday and Thursday from 1:45 to 2:15, and parents are welcome to come watch. The CPE Sportsmanship Hockey Tourney is scheduled to start near the end of February. More on that to come.

This week we have an Adopt-a-Street Clean-up of Hopkins Street on Thursday at 12:45. We need chaperones for this event. If you’re able to attend, please let me know. It’s even more important that we have chaperones for our upcoming Tree Plant field trip on Thursday, February 4th. Students took home information about this event on Friday.




Lava Beds this Friday!

lava-tubeWe need reliable, energetic chaperones to join us on Friday’s field trip to Lava Beds National Monument! This trip is so great that students do it twice–both in 4th and 5th grade. During odd years, students study the geology of the area–rocks, volcanoes, lava tubes, et al. (They study Native American history during even years).

On Friday, students will be descending with their groups into a variety of pitch black caves. Ideally, these groups should be around 6 students, but right now we have only enough chaperones to have groups of 10 to 12. If you’re able and willing, please email us ASAP! Thanks.

Students will need sturdy shoes, layered clothing, a flashlight, and a bike helmet in order to attend. That means not flip flops or sandals, gym shorts, or skirts. The bike helmet is an absolute requirement. Students also need a sack lunch, a full water bottle, and snacks for the bus. It’s supposed to be hot over there this week, but the caves themselves are a consistent 42 degrees. Permission slips for the trip went home a week ago and are due Wednesday at the latest. If you need a new one, please download and print from here.

If you have any questions, please contact us at or

2014 Sams Valley Mini-Marathon

Here’s the start of the 40th Annual Sams Valley Mini-Marathon. Over six hundred 4th and 5th graders from Central Points five elementary schools participated in the 5K event. It was won by Tate Broesder of Mae Richardson in a time of 21:21, but several CPE kids finished in the top 10 including, for the boys, Ryder White (3rd), Dylan Garrett (4th), Tyson Palodichuk (6th), and Brayden Gray (9th). For the girls, Room 15 kid Haylee Baldwin finished 3rd, and Abbie Nevers finished 6th. Congrats to all our kids for a job well done! Watch for the next episode of CPETV for more coverage of the race.

Sewing School

sew school 1Due to overwhelming response, we’re forced to split our lunch time sewing club with Mrs. Lewis into two sessions. Each group will meet with her on Thursdays for a month at a time. The group that starts tomorrow (Thursday) includes Sophie Q., Yuri, Rose, Sidney, Kara, Alyssa, Rayden, Mya, McKenna, and Hailee H..  The second group (the other kids who turned in slips) will meet next month.  Thanks for your patience and understanding as we kick off this project.

Lava Beds Trip is this Friday!

Lava tube in Lava Beds National ParkOur first field trip of the year takes us to the Lava Beds National Monument in Tulelake, California, this Friday (Sept. 19th). This is an annual event for our 4th and 5th graders, and well worth the long drive. We alternate each year between studying the geology of the lava tubes and the Native American history associated with Captain Jack’s Stronghold. This is a history year, so the students are learning this week about the Modoc Wars and will be exploring both the Stronghold and the caves. I also like to incorporate bats into the curriculum, turning my students into chiropterologists for a couple of weeks. Students took home permission slips for the trip last week, but if it’s been misplaced, a new one can be found here. The cost to attend is $3 per student. This covers 30% of the transportation cost (your taxes cover the other 70% through the State). Here are a few tips to get the most out of this trip:

Students need sturdy shoes for hiking, good pants (such as jeans) for climbing over rocks, and a bike helmet (for head protection–required!).  They may want to bring gloves and a sweatshirt or jacket, as the caves can be a bit cold (usually around 42 degrees), although the weather forecast is calling for hot weather.

Students should also bring a water bottle (full of cold water–not sugary drinks), a small flashlight or headlamp, and both a hardy sack lunch and a good supply of quality snacks to eat on the way home. Lunch is around 11 a.m. and we won’t be returning to CPE until around 5:30 or later.

Students are welcome to bring electronics to use on the bus, they may bring cameras, and they can use their cell phones as cameras. Please be aware that the school district cannot accept responsibility for lost or damaged electronics.

We appreciate parents and grandparents who serve as chaperones.  Note, however, that chaperones are required to complete a volunteer application/criminal background check if one hasn’t been completed in the last two years. The forms can be found here and must be submitted by Wednesday of this week.

Chaperones are welcome to drive their own vehicles, though they may have to pay the $10 park entrance fee. We ask that chaperone vehicles follow the bus on the way too the park. Students may ride with their parents in private vehicles, but only with their own parent. (Sorry, a student may not ride with a friend, even if he or she has permission from a parent.) Note, too, that part of the field experience is the interaction that takes place on the bus, which brings me to pointing out how important it is that we have some parents joining us on the bus to help control said interaction. Finally, all adults who attend will be considered chaperones. Ideally there will be two adult chaperones with each small group.