February 11 Newsletter

Hello Everyone,

We have another full week of learning and  fun!  Here are some reminders about Valentine’s Day and what we’ve been learning.

Valentine’s Day – We will celebrate February 13thNo school on Friday for Teacher retreat day.

  1. Secret Valentine card exchange – due tomorrow, February 12th. Your child pulled a classmate’s name from a bowl so that they can make a special Valentine for them.
    • Steps:
      1. Decorate one side
      2. Write a friendly message to tell why this person is special – no names
      3. Bring by Wednesday, February 12th.
  1. Valentine’s Day activities:
    • Make Valentine envelopes in the morning.
    • Bingo and card exchange 12-1.

3. Pajama Day on Thursday! Your child may wear pajamas because the “principal for day” decreed it on Purple and Gold Day.

Pajama Day Parameters:

· If not pajamas, students should dress in school uniform

· Sweat pants, shorts, and athletic wear okay

· Onesies okay

· Pajamas cannot be too large, low rise, too long, too short, low cut, too tight, oversize, or too small. Gaps between pants and top are not permitted. There should be no holes, tears, or other signs of excessive wear

· Flip flops, slippers, and sandals are not permitted, even on pajama day

· No face paint, no painted hair

Our Learning last week:

  • Virtue of the month: love – We wrote poems about what love means to us and posted them on our display wall.
  • Saint of the Month: St. Bernadette – We read 2 stories about St. Bernadette’s life.
  • 3-digit subtraction using the regrouping strategy
  • We learned how to use addition to check subtraction answers.
  • cursive – We have learned 20 lower case letters so far.
  • Pike Place Market: We learned about what you can visit at the market, explored an international touch kit and found where they were from on a map, and learned about Rachel the Piggy bank, then made our own Pigs on Parade art.
  • You can use the Family Guide for visiting Pike Place Market:


    • This Week:
  • finish learning lower case cursive strokes.
  • Math: clocks and telling time.
  • President’s Day – we’re reading So You Want to be President? to learn about past presidents.
  • Safety Lesson – Rule 1: Only go with an adult with your parent’s permission.  Rule 2: You don’t have to do what adults say if it is unsafe.
  • Wednesday: Peacemaker lesson by Mrs. Dahlgren and All School Mass @ 9am.  You are welcome to join us!
  • Greenwood library – check out a book and write a book report.

God bless you and your family!

Mrs. Oines


January 31st Newsletter

Hello Everyone,

Catholic Schools Week was a huge success!  We do so many great things at Saint John school because of your support, financial gifts and volunteer hours.  I choose to work in Catholic schools because of my amazing colleagues, supportive parents and fantastic students.  I feel so thankful for the blessing of Saint John School!  Thank you!

Catholic Schools Week Recap

Monday: Celebrate Our Community – We wrote Ashley, our Unbound friend, and learned more about Costa Rica.  Thank you for your $1 donations!  We exceeded our $30 monthly gift to Unbound J

Tuesday: Celebrate Volunteers Day – we prayed for you- wonderful parents- and spent time making you thank-you cards.

Wednesday: Dignity of all People Day– We learned about empathy and how to be an up-stander.  I read three books about standing up to bullying and we made a “warm word” craft, to help us think of kind words and responses to use.

Thursday: Celebrate Our Teachers – I’m still enjoying my lovely flowers at home.  Thank you so much!  I loved seeing all the little Mrs. Oines’s and other little teachers.

Friday: Purple and Gold Day- What a great spirit day!  The kids loved their special lunch and homecoming assembly led by the 8th graders.  The 8th graders beat the teachers in every, single event!

Our Learning last week:

  • Catholic school events and activities
  • 3-digit subtraction using the regrouping strategy
  • cursive letter formation: i, t, u, w, e, l, b and h

***Reading Test in folder*** Check your child’s folder for their STAR Reading test.  It will show you their latest reading level and the growth they have made.  Keep this copy.

Social Studies and canceled Pike Place Market field trip-  In 2nd grade we learn about communities and typically take the children to Pike Place Market as an example of a local community.  We will replace this field trip with a different community-themed field trip later this spring.  Mrs. Hendrickson and I planning something great!  For now, it’s a surprised.  We will still learn about Pike Place Market and encourage you to visit the market as a family.

God bless you and your family!

Mrs. Oines


January 24 Newsletter

Hello Parents!

We’ve been working hard all week to prepare for Catholic Schools Week.  The kick-off for Catholic Schools Week starts on Sunday!  Please be sure to join us for 10:30 Mass on Sunday, January 26th and for the Open House 12-1:30. Come see the animals reports and art based off the author, Steve Jenkins.  He creates life-like animal art using collage.  This is the first Open House in our new classrooms in the main building!  Thank you for supporting the capital campaign!

Catholic Schools Week Schedule

Monday: Service and Outreach Day – Bring $1 for Ashley, our sponsor child from Costa Rica.  Wear Costan Rica colors – red, white and blue – or uniform.

Tuesday: Celebrate our Volunteers Day

Wednesday: Celebrate the Dignity of People Day

Thursday: Celebrate Our Teachers – Dress like a teacher day and bring in a flower.

Friday: Purple and Gold Day- free lunch for students and all school assembly @ 1:30.

***Hot Lunch: DO NOT order hot lunch on February 6th.***  We are going to Pike Place Market that day.  Permission slips will come home soon.  I have all the chaperones I need – thank you volunteers!

Vocations Guest Speakers needed for Catholic School’s Week, Jan. 28-Feb. 1: Can you come and share about your job with the 2nd graders?  We are flexible on the time of day.  Contact me if you have share with us.

Our introduction to Costa Rica – Vanessa Castillo was a fabulous guest speaker today!  She is from Costa Rica and shared story of growing up there.  She wore a beautiful dress, showed us pictures, maps and even gave us little poison dart frog toy.

Our Learning this month:

Author Study Steve Jenkins: This author writes facts and creates beautiful collage pictures of animals. We’ve had over 30 of his books in class to read.  This video show how Steve Jenkins creates is amazing books.  Come see our animal collage art at the Open House. http://www.stevejenkinsbooks.com/making_books_video.html

  • Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement
  • 2 and 3-digit subtraction using the regrouping strategy
  • Morning Offering prayer
  • practice self-control and responsibility for ourselves
  • Reading: Nonfiction skills using Explorer Magazine and Steve Jenkins’ books.
  • Writing: Animal paragraph
  • Author study – Steve Jenkins
  • Social Studies – lessons about Australia (prays for animals affected by fires) and Costa Rica (home country of our Unbound friend, Ashley)

I hope to see you Sunday at the Open House!

Mrs. Oines


January 12th Newsletter

Welcome back to school!  It has been wonderful to hear about the 2nd graders’ Christmas adventures.  We’re off to a great start to 2020.

This week, we made learned about our January virtue of the month: self-control.  We made posters of strategies we use to keep our self-control.  The posters on display on the new bulletin boards in our primary hall.  We learned how to subtract 2-digit numbers with regrouping, reviewed digraphs in phonics, completed our printing strokes workbook pages, identified nonfiction text features and compared/contrasted fiction and nonfiction books.

$1 to Unbound: Ashley from Costa Rica:  Our class has done a great job bringing in $1 every month for our child sponsor, Ashley.  We received a beautiful Christmas card from Ashley and will be writing her back soon.  Thank you for your continued support of our child sponsorship of Ashley!

Civil Rights and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.:  As we prepare to celebrate MLK day, my students will be learning about racism in U.S. history and acts of courage people have taken to bring equality to all people.  We will discuss our nation’s history of slavery of African and Indigenous Peoples, learn about the civils rights movement and hear many books about Dr. King and other Black leaders.  We will read: If You Were a Kid During the Civil Rights Movement, The Youngest Marcher: A Young Civil Rights Activist, We are the Change, and Dr. Martin Luther King Day. 

Vocations Guest Speakers needed for Catholic School’s Week, Jan. 28-Feb. 1: Can you come and share about your occupation with the 2nd graders?  We are flexible on the time of day.  Contact me if you have share with us.

Tour of Pike Place Market: (all spots are filled – thank you!) I am requesting 3 volunteers to help chaperone our field trip Thursday, February  6th, 9-1.  We will have a guided tour of Pike Place Market in small groups.  You would be required to chaperone a small group of students.  This is a no-buying field trip for students and parents.  We are there to learn about the history of the market, meet some producers and have a few samples.  We take a metro bus to and from Pike Place Market.

Mid-Year Reading Assessment to check reading skill progress week of January 21.

Happy New Year!

Mrs. Oines


December 6, 2019


Hello parents,

Advent is off to a great start!  We’re busy getting our hearts and minds ready for Christmas. We spent a lot of time this week learning about Advent, our virtue of the month- patience and time preparing for the Immaculate Conception mass on Monday.

Reports cards came home on Thursday.  I’m so proud of the 2nd graders!  We have learned so much in the 1st trimester.

This Week:

Math: We learned how to add 3-digit numbers with regrouping the ones and tens place.  We also had 12 principals from the northern deanery visit our class during math on Tuesday.  They were learning a teacher-observation tool.  They were very impressed by our class!

Reading: In reading groups, we have started a vocabulary program called Wordly Wise.  Each lesson includes, a word list of definitions and examples, activities to use the words, a story with the words and questions about the story. It’s engaging and challenging.

We have begun an author’s study of Tome dePaola, a favorite of mine.  I have about 50 of his books checked out for us!  He has written and illustrated the Strega Nona series and many Christmas and saint books.  We’re focusing on character traits and will write a book report of our favorite book.

Writing: We continued to work on using correct grammar, capitals and punctuation in our writing.

Handwriting: We are still reviewing and mastering our printing strokes.  We practice everyday.

Religion: The 2nd and 5th grade classes will host the Immaculate Conception mass this Monday.  We will have students helping as readers, greeters, gift bearers, altar services and all will process up with their buddy for the mass processional.  We colored beautiful images of Mary to bring up to the altar.  You are welcome to come and sit with us!

For Advent, we made paper Advent wreaths to mark the weeks of Advent.  We pray along with an Advent daily devotional on Formed.org – Brother Francis’ Days of Advent.  At home your child will mark each day of Advent until Christmas.

We discussed our virtue of the month, patience.  Patience is waiting without complaining.  Each child made a poster that shows an example of patience.  We will focus on patiently waiting in lines, waiting to talk, waiting for our turn, waiting for our favorite book, etc.  They learned that we can grow our patience muscles by practicing.  We will get more patient if we work at it!


12/5 – Report Cards went home, please sign and return one copy, keeping the other for yourself.  Kindly return the envelope for reuse next marking period.

Monday, 12/9- 5th and 2nd grades lead the Immaculate Conception mass at 9:00.  DRESS UNIFORM!  We’d love to have you join us if you can!

12/16 School-wide reconciliation service from 9:00-9:30 and 12/18 Individual reconciliation with Father

12/19 – Christmas Music Program @ 7pm

12/20 – last day of school before break.  Noon dismissal


Mrs. Oines

November 22 Newsletter

Hello everyone!  Thank you parents and volunteers for a great Grandparent’s and Special Friend’s Day!  The children were so excited for their family members to come.  They worked hard with Mrs. Tsagalakis to learn their songs for this special day.

FLAT STANLEY: When Flat Stanley is mailed back to you follow these steps:

  1. Get the sharing form from Mrs. Oines
  2. Students complete the sharing form at home.
  3. Decide how you will share the pictures and things you got back (Ideas: make a book, poster, Powerpoint, or show each piece one at a time)
  4. Practice presenting the Flat Stanley project
  5. Tell Mrs. Oines you’re ready to share. Fridays are sharing days.
  6. Present to the class.
  7. Mrs. Oines keeps all things until our Open House in May/June.

This Week: 

Math: We learned how to add 2-digit numbers with regrouping the ones place.  We follow each step for the regrouping strategy.

23 + 74 =

25 + 19 + 35 =

Writing and spelling: We are working on using correct spelling, grammar, capitals and punctuation in our writing.  We wrote a paragraph, “What I Love About Fall.”

Religion: We end each day by writing in our Gratitude Journal.  We have so much to be thankful for and the kids are taking time to reflect on the blessings in their life.  We visit the Adoration chapel every Thursday to pray for our families, friends and world.  Thank you for sending in donations for the food drive and homeless drive.  You are making a difference!

Ashley from Unbound:  We have mailed pictures, prayers and a welcome message to our new friend in Costa Rica.  Your child is encouraged to donate $1 each month.  We have made a pretty box to hold our donations.  The Saint John staff take care of collecting and sending the payments each month.  Your child’s donation go help Ashley with food, shelter, education and clothing.

Social Studies: We spent the week reading about the trip on the Mayflower, Pilgrim life, Wampanoag life and history of Thanksgiving.  We read our land acknowledgement statement each day before beginning Social Studies.  Please go to this website to see the reenactment videos of a Pilgrim homestead and Wampanoag village. https://www.plimoth.org/learn/just-kids/thanksgiving-virtual-field-trip

Ask your child what they learned about Thanksgiving, Now and Then.

Coming Up:

Thanksgiving Mass, Monday, November 24 @ 9am.  All are welcome!

May God bless your weekend!

Mrs. Oines






November 14 Newsletter

Congratulation to our 2nd graders for receiving their First Reconciliation!  God has blessed them with His love and forgiveness.  I’m so proud of them!  We will participate in reconciliation during the upcoming Advent season.

I enjoyed meeting with all of you at conferences.  Your children are wonderful and they love to learn!  Please contact me anytime during the year if you’d like to check in.

Our Learning

Math: Continue working on place value, skip counting and #s up to 1,000.  New skill: adding 2 digit numbers.  We are learning how to regroup (used to be called carrying) the ones to the tens place. 

Religion: We’re learning about different saints, the virtue of the month: generosity and celebrated World Kindness Day (11/13).

Zones of Regulation/Social Skills:

Ms. Shaw taught us the “Talk it Out” strategy.  We did role-playing to practice this strategy to solve small problems.

I feel _____ when you _____. Can you please __________?

Mrs. Dahlgren, our recess manager, taught two lessons about friendship and tolerance.

OCTOBER – We began our conversation about respect and the importance of friends.   This included what we look for in a friend, what happens when friendships have problems and what it means to be a good sport.  We read How To Lose All Your Friends by Nancy Carlson.
NOVEMBER – This month’s topic was tolerance. Our definition (accepting differences in other people) and the students gave examples of what tolerance looks and feels like. We read Stellaluna by Janell Cannon and looked for examples of tolerance.


S.S.: We completed our Washington State landform book and took a test to show what we learned.

S.S. New Learning: This week we began learning about Thanksgiving today and Thanksgiving in 1621, so we can put together a Now and Then poster next week.

We started off by sharing what we do for Thanksgiving with our families. Then we looked back 400 years to when Pilgrims came and settled on Wampanoag land, near present day Massachusetts. These Native Americans had lived there for thousands of years before Europeans came.  We learned how the Pilgrims and Wampanoag had made an alliance and lived peacefully for a generation.   They had a thanksgiving meal together to show gratitude for the harvest.  It lasted three days and it included delicious foods that likely are not on your present-day Thanksgiving table such as waterfowl, venison, lobster, clams, berries, fruits, and squash.

After this generation of peace the Native Americans throughout our present-day country were forced from their land, enslaved and forced to give up their languages and traditions.  We spend time teaching this difficult history so that Native peoples are respected and honored and so we can fight racism and injustice.  One way we can be mindful of our nation’s past is land acknowledgement.  It goes like this:

“On behalf of Mrs. Oines’ 2nd Grade Class, I acknowledge the land on which we stand today as the traditional home of the Coast Salish people, the traditional home of all tribes and bands within the Duwamish, Suquamish, Tulalip and Muckleshoot nations.”

Today there are about 5,000 Wampanoag people living mostly in Massachusetts and there is a movement to restore their nearly lost language.  Parents are encouraged to learn along with us!  Follow this link for more information about Pilgrims and Native Americans: Havest Ceremony Beyond the Thanksgiving Myth

Go to these websites to see some of the amazing reenactment videos we watched of a Pilgrim village and Wampanoag village.


Important Dates:

Help for the Homeless – Kit Making – Tuesday, November 19th , 6:30-8 in Egan Hall.  All welcome to help. Thank you for all the donations!

Grandparent’s Day November 21thGrandparents come to the classrooms between 10:45-11:00 to see the classroom.  Then Grandparents will escort the 2nd grader to Egan Hall.  No hot lunch on November 15th.  Bring a lunch to share with Grandparents.

Saint Vincent de Paul Food bank is accepting donations for families in need.  Please send in non-perishable food, no glass.   Thank you for your support!

God bless you and your family!

Mrs. Oines

October Newsletter

Hello Parents,

We’ve had another full week of fun, learning and peace-making.  I enjoyed talking with many families at conferences last Monday.  I’m really proud of the 2nd Graders and know we’re going to learn so much this year!  I had some computer problems, so was delayed in getting information to you.  Here’s what we’ve been working on the past two weeks.

Have a great time trick-or-treating tonight!!  All Saint’s mass is tomorrow at 9am.

Our Learning:

Science and Engineering:  We completed our engineering challenge.  We made two different tall towers from different materials.  First we made a tall tower from straws, sticks, rubber bands, cardboard and foil.  We measured the tower and draw a diagram of it.  The next week we tried to make taller towers in the Maker’s Space, using toothpicks and candies.  We reflected on the planning, building and success of our towers.  Ask you child which tower was taller and why?

Social Studies: We are learning about landforms and maps in 2nd grade.  We’ve been making a flip book about the landforms and bodies of water in Washington State.  Ask your child: How tall is Mt. Rainier?  How many islands are in WA state?  What is a plateau and gorge?

Math: Place value and comparing/ordering numbers.

  • Ways to make numbers: Expanded form: 200+30+ 5= 235 , word form two hundred thirty-five, 2 hundreds, 3 tens, 5 ones.
  • 128 > 109,  243 < 284  and  105 = 105
  • least to greatest (12, 21, 102, 120, 201, 210).

Writing/Grammar:  We are writing complete sentences with capitals, complete thoughts and punctuation.  We are learning which words always get a capital and practicing every day.  Fall paragraph: We began the prewriting for The Best Things about Fall.

Zones of Regulation strategy: SIZE of the PROBLEM.   A person’s reaction should match the size of their problem.  We read many scenerios and decided if the problem was small, medium or big.  Check your child’s folder for the size of a problem puzzle we did.  I ask kids to try to solve their own small problems before asking me for help.

1. Small problems are solved best by talking it our calmly, ignoring it, choosing something else to do or taking deep breaths.

2. Medium problems are solved best by raising your hand for help, walking away, asking a friend for help or calming down before solving it.

3.  Big problems need adult help right away.

Religion: It’s peace month!  We’ve been noticing peaceful acts, reading books about peace and practicing peaceful breathing.

We are ready for 1st Reconciliation!  We have reviewed the steps for this sacrament and practiced the Act of Contrition every day.  The children have learned that God’s love means he forgives us of our sins and helps us do better next time.  God always loves us no matter what!  We can always go to God with our problems and get help.  The sacrament of Reconciliation helps heal our hearts and makes us feel light, happy, relaxed and forgiven.  The 2nd graders will then receive the sacrament of Reconciliation during Advent and Lent at school.

Coming Up:

November 1st – All Saint’s mass @ 9am – wear dress uniform (white shirt, blue sweatshirt with logo).

Friday, Nov. 8th – No School for Conferences

Monday, Nov. 11th – No School in honor of Veteran’s Day

Nov. 27-29 – No School for Thanksgiving Break

Tower Building and Halloween Carnival


October 18 Newsletter

Hello 2nd Grade Families,

It’s been another great week!  Here are the highlights and information to know…

Meet Ashley:  St. John School and Parish are very excited to announce a partnership with Unbound-a charity that allows us to directly help children in need.  The 2nd Grade classes will be sponsoring, Ashley, a 7-year old girl from Costa Rica.  Her birthday is 5/11/12.  She has two brothers, a sister, mom and dad.  She walks to school and enjoys PE, singing, dancing and jumping rope.  She lives with her family is a house in poor condition.  In her community, there is a lot of social risk.  We will support her by praying, sending her letters and the children can donate $1 a month.  We will collect $1 every first Friday of the month.  Thank you for your support!

Orcas! Our orca certificates arrived!! We adopted a Southern Resident orca, named Eclipse, age 14.  The children’s donations support orca recovering and research.  You can help too!  Orca Recovery Day was Saturday, Oct. 19, Go to https://betterground.org/ord/ to see how your family can participate in many volunteer opportunities to help our orcas.

Math: We are learning about place value.  Numbers are organized into place values- ones, tens, hundreds, thousands.  We learned that numbers can be represented in standard form (153), expanded form (100+50+3) and word form (one hundred fifty-three).  Ask your child…how many tens are that number? What is ten more than 125?  Can you skip count by tens past 100?

Religion: This month’s kindness virtue is: PEACE.  We brainstormed ways to be peaceful, practice mindful breathing to feel peaceful and learned how Jesus can bring us peace through prayer.  We tried this simple, yet powerful prayer, “I am in Jesus. Jesus is me.  I am in peace.”  We also prayed a decade of the rosary in the church, using our class set of rosaries.  The Kindness mass was a highlight of the week – beautiful singing, prayers and reflecting on kindness!

Writing: It’s fall!  We did a prewriting activity to brainstorm fall topics and details to go with the topic.  Then we used the prewriting to write fall sentences.

STEM/Engineering: We enjoyed playing our 5th grade buddies’ games in the Maker’s Space on Wednesday. They made the games from cardboard and found items.  We were inspired to do our own engineering.  On Thursday, the kids were challenged to build a tall tower using a straw, popsicle stick, rubber band, piece of foil and piece of cardboard – but no tape!  In small groups, the kids figured out how to connect the supplies and create a tall tower. After building, the kids measured their tower in inches and drew a diagram of their tower.  It was really fun too!  Next week, we will try to build an even taller tower out of different supplies.

Next Week:

Tuesday, Oct. 22: School Photos & Greenwood library @ 12:50, to check out books.

Wednesday, Oct. 23: 2nd grade goes to the Maker’s Space for tower building

Monday, Oct. 28: No School – Conferences

I pray daily for your and your children.  Please pray for me too! God bless you!

Mrs. Oines













October 11th Newsletter

Hello 2nd Grade Families,

MAP testing is complete!  The kids did a great job persisting through the math, reading and language tests.  We will review the testing scores and other work at the upcoming conferences.  Sign up for conferences here: https://www.signupgenius.com/tabs/5317fd70fa2c3e95-studentparenttea

Flat Stanley– A 2nd grader’s Flat Stanley has returned home!  Hooray!  Next step: Get the sharing form from me and choose a day to share.  If you haven’t mailed Flat Stanley, do so this week!  This is our most important school project in 2nd Grade.

Homework– I assign homework Monday-Thursday to be completed each day.  It comes in the packet on Mondays with a cover sheet to explain each assignment.  Please check the box when the homework is completed.  If your child is unable to complete and needs more time, just write me a note on the homework cover sheet. 

Math– We worked on subtraction concepts – including fact families, writing subtraction equations to solve stories problems, vocabulary (difference) and setting up problems always using the big # first (10-4, not 4-10).  Next week, we’ll start place value concepts. Example: 235, expanded form 200+30+5, word form two hundred thirty-five, model using place value blocks.

Reading– In reading groups we are focusing on retelling the beginning, middle and end or stories aloud and written. We spend time reading good-fit books every day.

Religion– We are practicing different forms of prayer. Prayer circle in the morning is petition prayer.  Monday Messages led by 8th graders is intercession prayer.  Adoration in the chapel every Thursday is praising & adoring God.  The Act of Contrition prayer is asking for forgiveness.  We will review and learn more about praying the rosary next week. 

Grammar – We do daily grammar so that your child will understand the uses and meaning for capitalization and punctuation in writing.  We learned to capitalize months, days of the week and to include a comma.  Ex: Today is Friday, October 11, 2019.  You can help by guiding your child to begin sentences with a capital letter and end with punctuation.

Zones of Regulation: We learned our first tool to manage our zones – mindful breathing.  We sit still, feet on the floor, breathe in, hold for moment, slowly exhale, repeat.  Next, we will practice mindful breathing to create peace inside and peace with others.  Peace is the virtue of the month.  We will also review how to pray the rosary and spend time practicing peacefulness in prayer.


Reconciliation Class, 7pm

Kindness Mass, Wednesday, October 16th @ 9:00 – all are welcome! Dress uniform (white shirt, blue sweatshirt).

Hearing and Vision screening, October 17th

Jog-a-thon Celebration Day, FREE DRESS – We passed our goal – $82,000!!

God bless you!

Mrs. Oines