Monday, October 20, 2008

Welcome Back! Hello! and Happy Autumn!

Hello friends!

I am Ms. Hughes, the new teacher of the Bella Vista Portable F Superstars. This year, we are a 1st/2nd combo class with 11 wonderful students and two hard-working teachers, myself and Intervention Specialist Ms. Gonzalez. I am new to Bella Vista but this is my 2nd year teaching in Oakland Unified.
I am excited to have a great year and share our educational adventures with you, the readers!
Recently in class, we have been talking a lot about Autumn and getting really excited for Halloween. We have been reciting the following poem to get ourselves in the mood:
"Come" said the wind
to the leaves one day
"Come over the meadow
and we will play.
Put on your dresses
of red and gold.
For summer is gone
and the days grow cold."

Keep checking up on us for more updates about our exciting adventures and achievements!!!

-Ms. Hughes

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Download Summer School Options

Family Resource Network is at 5232 Claremont Ave., Oakland, CA 94618 and can be reached at(510)547-7322. They have posted a 2008 Recreation Resource List for children with disabilities and special needs. Go to this Web site ( and download Summer School Options from the left hand bar.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Art Trees

Since January, students have participated in various team-building art projects, including the art trees pictured here. The latest tree features adjectives and nouns the students brainstormed as leaves.

Yoga mats arrive

We've started doing Yoga postures after morning meeting and phonics skills.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Ocean Beach Clean-Up June 6

Last Friday, we visited Ms. Shepley's class to learn about pollution, marine wildlife and how we can help our streets and beaches clean and healthy. On June 6th, we'll be headed to Ocean Beach, San Francisco to help with Beach Clean Up Day. This is the second year in a row students at Bella Vista have participated in protecting our beaches.

Last of of school quickly approaching

The last day of school for students is June 12. Many thanks for the beautiful art project and photo album that our room mother put together to commemorate an amazing year! Many parents have questions about next year's placement. Regarding summer school options, class visits or placements, please contact:
Program Specialist: Eric Peterson at
Elementary Coordinator: Christie Anderson at

Talent Show June 4

We'll be performing bongos at the Bella Vista Talent Show on June 4th. The performance will take place in the auditorium. Students should wear white shirts and black or blue pants or skirts.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Join us for a Multicultural Celebration

On Wednesday, March 19th we will perform at Bella Vista's annual Multicultural Celebration. A Potluck dinner will be served at 5:00pm. The performances will begin at 6:00pm in the auditorium on the first floor. Students should wear white shirts and black pants or skirt.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Unit 7: Keep Trying

Keep Trying is meant to give students many examples of why persistence is so crucial in achievement.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Yoga for Youngsters Funded

I am thrilled to announce that a recent Portable F proposal, Yoga for Youngsters, was funded! We will be learning breathing techniques, as well as muscle and spine strengthening postures. With this program, students will learn positive, kinesthetic ways to develop focus and calm.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Unit 6: Journeys

Journeys aims to help students explore concepts of geography and travel. In the spirit of James Joyce, we'll employ a simplified version of concentric circles. First we need to understand we are in a place or a location. Then we can expand out to the classroom, the city, the state, the country, the continent, the world, the universe. This concept is embedded in the story, "Me on The Map." Understandably, it can be very abstract to young children! And yet, our new model solar system already has students asking questions about planets (No pluto in this line-up!) A lot of students in our class have traveled to places near and far (from Lake Merritt to Tahoe to Chile.) We'll be talking about that as a way to use prior knowledge to make connections. Also look forward to drawing and writing journals which our amazing room mom is getting for us. We will start a daily morning journal time where students will create a message and reflect upon it.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Drum by Nikki Giovanni

To continue our morning poetry and complement our regular drum lessons led by Mr. Osuna, we've started a new poem, "The Drum" by Nikki Giovanni.

The Drum
daddy says the world is
a drum tight and hard
and i told him
i'm gonna beat out my own rhythm

vocabulary focus: daddy, world, drum, tight, hard, beat, rhythm
high-frequency words: i, the, is, a, and, him, says, out, my

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Ms. Conklins in Guatemala and Egypt

My younger sister will be working with young children as a Healthy Schools Facilitator in Guatemala. She has created this blog to chart her experiences with students in Guatemala. I hope we can do at least one pen pal exchange between students before the year is up.. My older sister works in Cairo, Egypt with Save The Children, an organization committed to ensuring that children worldwide have access to food, education and nurturing environments.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Oysters in New York

What did you do on your winter break? I visited my good friend Ann, who is also a teacher. She works at the New York Harbor School in New York City with students in high school. It was so cold in New York! I visited her field class on a learning lab about oysters. The students diagrammed and measured oysters and had a filter competition. Students are learning how oysters help keep estuaries (places where salt and fresh water meet) healthy. We tasted oysters at the South Street Sea Port Museum.