Monthly Mustang

We are lucky to have a wonderful Farnsworth Family made up of students, families, staff and community members. This year, two of our staff members, Mrs. Kathy Danno, and Mr. Peter Genge are retiring after long and wonderful careers at Farnsworth School. We wish you all the best and thank you for your dedicated service to Farnsworth School.

Room Assignments
Student room assignments will be available in the Parent Portal in late August.

Supply Drop Off
We will be hosting our annual supply drop off on Thursday, August 31, 2017 from 9:00 - 11:00am. Parents and students are welcome to visit their new classrooms and drop off their communal supplies for the year.

Summer Hours
We are hosting ESY this year. The building will be open for the month of July from 7:45-11:30. Please feel free to call the main office if you need assistance during the summer break.

Please check our website over the summer for additional school updates,

Core Components of Restorative Practices…continued from last month!

3. Affective Statements promote awareness of feelings
Affective Statements are more than simple “I” statements. They are statements where the speaker not only acknowledges and owns their thought/feeling, but also provides an understanding of the thought/feeling.
I feel _____because…
I get sad when…
Like Restorative Questions, sometimes one or two strategically placed Affective Statements can be a useful tool.

4. Empathetic Listening
Empathetic Listening is when one person truly listens to the thoughts, feelings, and needs of another person, and makes an active effort to comprehend the other person’s perspective.

Empathetic listening is a concentrated effort to:
-Truly hear the speaker and their perspective
-Ensure that the speaker feels that you are comprehending and valuing them without judgment.

We hope you have enjoyed a glimpse into Restorative Practices here at Farnsworth and wish you a wonderful summer!

Room 116 – PreSchool
Ms. Sanchez, Mrs. Cacal & Ms. Woods 
The students have been busy exploring our Balls study. They’ve learned about the different types, their properties and more excitingly learned to properly use/play with them. Our students applied their athletic skills and became baseball players by having fun learning how to play America's favorite pastime, baseball- Go Cubs! The majority of our preschoolers will be transitioning into kindergarten in the fall so we have been working extremely hard learning our letters, sounds, numbers 0-15 and counting to 100 EVERY DAY! It’s been an amazing year for Room 116 and we are extremely proud of all the accomplishments our students have achieved and anticipate the countless more that they will in their future. We hope each and every one of you has a fun, safe and happy summer!

Best wishes!

Room 117 – PreSchool
Mrs. Elisco, Ms. Sweeney & Mrs. Ryan
Family Fun Day was a great success! Our children and their families enjoyed art activities, games, the petting zoo, and a yummy lunch. It was wonderful to spend time with everyone.

We are wrapping up our Tree Unit. Recently, we’ve been lucky enough to see city workers cutting down trees across the street from our school. The children were very excited to see the man up in the cherry picker, using his chainsaw to give the tree a “haircut”. The children cheered as the branches and limbs fell to the ground with a loud “thud.” And the next day they were amazed by the remaining tree stump.

We’ve read many great books about trees recently. Some of our favorites are, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, The Giving Tree, and Our Tree Named Steve. Our children love science! One of our favorite experiments is the Skittles Experiment. In our first experiment, we used water to separate the letter “S” from the candy. In our second experiment, we made a rainbow using water and Skittles in a tray. The children used their scientific inquiry skills, and learned about the physical properties of both the candy and the water.

Have a great summer and read every day! 

Room 118 – Multiage
Mrs. Singer
We have been busy in Room 118 discussing Community Helpers, the places they work, and the tools they use at work. The students read “Cam Sees Community Helpers” from our Unique curriculum and participated in a variety of literacy activities focusing on community helpers. We are ending the school year by reading “Where is My Baby?” and identifying animals and their babies. The students will be going on a scavenger hunt at Lincoln Park Zoo to find the different animals from the story.

Room 101 – Kindergarten
Mrs. Johnson
We can't believe that the year is almost over! We have had an amazing year in Kindergarten! We have become readers, writers, and mathematicians! Over the course of the year, we have learned all of our letters and sounds including our blends, digraphs, and bossy Rs. We have learned how to blend sounds to read new words and sentences. We have learned 100 sight words! In math, we have learned to read, write, and count to 100. We can add and subtract, name and build shapes, and collect and interpret data. We have learned about nonliving things, weather, and animals. We have learned about our cultures and about ourselves. In May, we hatched and cared for our brood of baby chicks! As the year comes to a close, we are enjoying spending time together in the strong community we have built over the year. While we are a little sad to be leaving our little classroom family, we are very excited to become 1st graders and learn another whole year worth of knowledge!

Room 106 – Kindergarten
Mrs. Ryan
The kindergarteners have been busy learning about Fairy Tales. We have read several different versions of Cinderella from all different cultures. Our favorite version is a Native American Tale called The Rough Faced Girl. We are in the process of writing our own fairy tales which include picking the setting, and main characters and creating a story. We also have our Fairy Tale Tea and get to dress up as a character from a story. It's always a lot of fun!

We have worked hard all year getting ready for first grade. The kids have learned so much and put in a lot of hard work. I always hate to see them go, but they are ready for first grade.

Room 105 – 1st Grade
Mrs. Gallian
The year is coming to a close. It has been a pleasure teaching your child and watching them grow. Students are looking forward to second grade. This summer make sure to read with them each night. Your involvement in their learning is crucial. Additionally, students can continue to work on Raz-Kids and Prodigy math to keep their reading and math skills sharp. 

Have a safe and healthy summer!

Room 108 – 1st Grade
Mrs. Krupa
The students in first grade Room 108 attended a field trip to the Chicago Botanic Gardens. One of the exhibits we were able to visit was "The Bonsai Collection.” Many of the trees were more than 50 years old but were less than 3 feet high. The students were amazed to see such incredible specimens. We also admired the beautiful flower gardens, and students learned about different kinds of plants such as cosmos, hostas, roses and geraniums.

In our nature class students planted flower seeds (which they were allowed to take home) and learned the process of a growing plant. As a culminating activity we watched a short movie and discovered how bees, birds, butterflies and humans perceive plants and flowers.

After we got back to school students shared their field experience in their journals and illustrated their favorite part of the trip. What an amazing, fun day!!!

Room 107 – 2nd Grade
Mrs. Lewis
We are winding down the school year with a bang! Students are currently working on a research project of a famous person, of their choice. On Friday June 16th, the students will be presenting their research in a Dress-Up Biography. We are excited and looking forward to our Dress-Up Biography Day.

We also have been engaged in perfecting our persuasive writing. We have been having fun trying to persuade, reason, and argue our point of views.

In Daily 5, we have read hundreds of books at our lexile level and at our interests, this school year.

We have enjoyed an awesome school year in 2nd grade!

Room 114 – 2nd Grade
Mrs. McGuigan
Every month we read a book together in class. The book that we are reading this month is called Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. Students took the sorting test last week. Then this week every student made a House Crest. Next week students will make wand pencils and Harry Potter glasses.

Every child is writing his/her very own Memory Book for second grade. Students are writing about their favorite memories from this year. Every student will get a card with something nice written by every child in room 114.

In math we are preparing for MAP. Students are busy reviewing topics that we have learned this year. We are reviewing counting money, telling time on an analog clock, subtraction with borrowing, addition with regrouping, multiplication, division, fractions, geometric shapes, and reading charts and graphs.

Daily Five has been AMAZING this year!!!! I hope that students will continue to read every day this summer for an hour. I have encouraged students to take trips to the local library and join the Summer Reading Program.

Every student will go home with a book box.

Room 100 – 3rd Grade
Mrs. Desai
I can’t believe the year has come to an end! During the past few weeks, we have been busy reading Trumpet of the Swan and learning about animals and their habitats. In Social Studies, we are learning about the Chicago landmarks and neighborhoods. The class also read Flat Stanley's Worldwide Adventure and created a Chicago Flat Stanley. In math we focused on attributes of 2 dimensional shapes and adding and subtracting within 1,000. The students worked very hard during MAP testing. They all put forth their best efforts and were motivated through the entire test. 

We have had an incredibly successful year in Room 100. I could not be more proud of your child and the growth that he/she has made this year. Each child met a pathway to fourth grade and while I am so excited for them and all the amazing things ahead of them, I am so sad to see them go! 

Parents, thank you for all of your support this year. Third grade is a pivotal year for educational development and I could not have done it without your help. I have a truly amazing group of kids this year and they were a pleasure to work with. Have a happy, healthy and safe summer!!

Room 102 – 3rd Grade
Ms. Fakhoury
It has been an amazing school year! I can’t believe the school year is coming to an end. Students have been working very hard and are ready for summer break! In math, we have covered contents such as using strategies and properties to add and subtract. We went over how to use operations with whole numbers to solve problems. We also covered geometry and students learned a lot about the attributes of polygons and quadrilaterals. 

In science, we are finishing up an animal research project that we have been working on in class. We will present these on the last few days of school. We finished two novels, The Trumpet of the Swan and The Mouse and the Motorcycle that tied in with our animal unit. While reading both novels, students covered skills such as compare/contrast, story structure/plot and character traits. We will be making an end of the year memory book that students will be able to take home! It’s been a wonderful year teaching your children. I look forward to seeing you all next school year as 4th graders!

Room 103 – Multiage
Mrs. Miller/Mrs. Danno
Buddy Baseball is coming to an end, it has been a great season for 103, 118 and our awesome 6th grade peer buddies! We have had so much fun! Buddy Baseball is a non-competitive recreational league for students with special needs. Each player is paired with a “Buddy” to assist the player as needed. The league fosters friendships and breaks down barriers.

The end of this school year is soon coming to a bittersweet close, the students, their families and classroom staff will be sadly saying good-bye to Mrs. Danno :(. 

Mrs. Danno, remember you? We always will!

Emulating your example - a goal worth aspiring to.

And so today we say goodbye and thank you, thank you, thank you.....

Room 112 – VI Resource
Mrs. Sprecher, Mrs. Theil & Mrs. Quinn
There are many wonderful events and experiences available to our students with visual impairments in the coming months. We have sent flyers home for many of these opportunities, but just in case you missed one...

* ISVI Summer Camps June 18-24 in Jacksonville, IL 

*Blind Service Association's Pathways Program starts at the end of June and runs until August 4th. Contact Bill Green at 312-236-0808. 

* Illinois Association for Parents of Children with Visual Impairments Outing at Brookfield Zoo Juy 15. Contact Gail Patterson at The Chicago Lighthouse for registration. 

*NFB's Bell Academy July 17- 28. For more information go to

* Audio-described Performance of Madagascar at the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre on August 20. 773-234-5393

* BSA's Read To The Top Program

* Learning Ally's Summer Reading Together

Have a great summer!

Room 109 – Primary Resource
Mrs. Gillespie
In addition to working on our individual goals, we have been very busy in 109. The kindergarten students just finished comparing and describing measurable attributes in math class. First graders just wrapped up the math unit on making halves and fourths of rectangles and circles. Second graders are working on a graphs and data unit in math. Across all grade levels, we are continuing to develop our reading skills.

Room 115 – Multiage
Ms. Mancini
The year has come to an end! The Unique Curriculum theme for the month was animals and and their babies. The students read different stories about animals and their babies; they learned new related vocabulary words. We learned about the weather and created a tornado.

See you next school year!

Room 204 – 4th Grade
Mrs. Nicholl
The 4th graders are studying and mastering the concepts of geometry in math class. They are learning about angles, shapes and measuring with protractors. They have also learned to measure angles using fractions of a circle, using known angles while using a protractor. They drew many things expertly like the following: drawing and identifying points, line segments, rays, right, acute obtuse and straight angles. We are finishing up the series of Geometry by classifying triangles and quadrilaterals by their properties, including the measure of their angles.

For the last two weeks of school, the children will be reviewing concepts from the second semester and will be starting the recognition and drawing of line-symmetric figures. These concepts and procedures will help build upon skills to be mastered in fifth grade of the school year 2017-2018.

In science, the children have been delving into the Human Body’s Systems. They are learning how powerful and important it is to keep ourselves healthy, physically and emotionally. Mr. Knoeckl’s Health class has supported and paralleled a lot of these terms and ideas.

On Friday, June 2nd the children attended a field trip to the Museum of Science and Industry where they saw up close and personal the systems that were studied in class. They loved the trip and we hope to make it a yearly tradition!

Room 206 – 4th Grade
Mrs. Feley
It is great to be back! The 4th graders have been working hard this last month of school. In reading Room 206 is finishing the novel Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Room 204 is finishing the novel Sideway Stories for Wayside School. The students have been enjoying reading these books. We have been working on many different reading skills like making connections, comparing and contrasting, character traits, and personification. I feel that both books have been a hit so far. After we finish reading the books the students will get to watch the movies and they will compare and contrast the books to the movies.

In social studies the students have been reading the magazine “Illinois Studies Weekly.” This magazine provides the students with information about Illinois. It always includes an Illinois legend, a question for the week, American Character and a section on Illinois wildlife. The last article that we read focused on the history of American Indians. It informed the students about the native inhabitants of Illinois. The article touched on the customs that were common among all of the American Indian tribes. The legend that was shared was called, “The Gift of Corn.” This led to the question of the week which asked “Where did corn come from?” The American Character focused on courage and they learned about the Bald Eagle in the Illinois wildlife.

It has been a pleasure teaching this wonderful 4th grade class. I hope that everyone has a wonderful and safe summer!

Room 201 - Multiage
Mrs. Pina
The 2017 school year is coming to an end and the students in Room 201 are excited for summer vacation! We’ve had a busy couple of months learning how to travel within our community and visiting a variety of restaurants. The students are eager for the final weeks of school and look forward to having an End of the Year picnic and celebrate our 4 graduating students! The students have worked so hard and should be very proud of their progress this school year.

Room 203 – 5th Grade
Math & Science
Mrs. Belousova
Why do you have a shadow? How can you use the Sun to tell time? How can you use the heat of the Sun to cook a hot dog?

Scientists and mathematicians in Room 203 were working on the Solar Energy Module engaging in activities that allowed them to experience solar energy firsthand. Fifth graders explored shadows and observed the changes in shadows as the position of the sun changes. Students used thermometers to measure temperatures in the sun and shade. They became proficient in using thermometers to monitor temperature change in different earth materials. They used their mathematics skills to graph the temperature changes.

Room 203 mathematicians worked very hard in class and at home and earned 1,043,096 energy points on a Khan Academy mission. They solved numerous math problems and watched quite a few videos to improve their knowledge of math concepts and to sharpen their math skills.

Students have been working on Front Rowed for 7 months and have answered 41,052 challenging math questions. They became brilliant mathematicians and are ready to step up into sixth grade!

Room 208 – 5th Grade
English/Language Arts & Social Studies
Ms. Goldstein
Our class recently finished a novel written by Grace Lin, called Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. This story is part of a Chinese legend and a folktale. Our heroine, Minli, spends her family's hard- earned money on a goldfish that is supposed to change their fortune. Ma is the keeper of the money, and she complains constantly about how poor her family is. The stories of the talking goldfish inspire Minli to set out on a journey to Never-Ending Mountain, where she will ask the Old Man in the Moon for help. Minli travels far from home, carrying items that end up being important for her survival. She meets a magical beloved dragon companion who helps her see what is really important in life.

She meets and overcomes challenges and has to complete her mission alone. Every character in the story changes and grows during the time that Minli is away. Fifth graders loved this story about Minli and her stories.

We have almost completed another novel, a sequel to Where the Mountain Meets the Moon. The title of this book is Starry River of the Sky by Grace Lin. This is another Chinese folktale. Rendi, a runaway boy lands in a place where he becomes a boy who does chores in an inn.

The plot of this story is interspersed with stories told by various characters. This story is a mix of adventure, mystery and fantasy. We are enjoying this sequel.

We recently went to the Grove in Glenview for our Pioneer Skills field trip. We dipped candles, made our own butter and lunch, and punched tin. In addition, we made rope and wove cloth. We were pioneer children for the day and had hands-on activities that re-created a day in the life of a pioneer. Thank you to Mrs. Chapin, Mrs. Donnelly and Mr. Miranda for chaperoning this trip.

Thank you for the wonderful opportunity of teaching your children this year. I have watched them grow into terrific young ladies and gentlemen.

Have a safe summer!

Room 200 – 6th Grade
English/Language Arts & Social Studies
Ms. Buen
For the past month, we have continued the cross curricular subject of immigration and heritage, concentrating on our “identity” and from where we come. In the process, we studied struggles of certain groups, especially those affected by World War II. We studied the Holocaust while reading The Boy in the Striped Pajamas and Hana’s Suitcase, novels about children affected by the Holocaust. We are currently reading an article in our Scope magazine about the Japanese Americans affected by the World War II. They were imprisoned in internment camps right here in the United States.

On a much happier note, I feel this year has been a great year and was very happy to teach them again. Have a fantastic summer!

Room 202 – 6th Grade
Math & Science
Mrs. Albrecht
In 6th grade math, we completed Topic 10: Ratio Concepts: Rates and Topic 11: Ratio Concepts: Percent. In Topic 10, students learned how to understand rates and unit rates, compare rates, apply unit rates including unit price and constant speed. Students learned to convert customary units and metric units and relate customary and metric units. In Topic 11, students learned to understand percent, fractions and decimals, percent greater than 100 and less than 1. Students learned to estimate percent, find the percent of a number and find the whole from a number and a percent. We will finish out the year by preparing for 7th grade, learning how to add, subtract, multiply and divide integers and solve equations with more than one operation. Students will also review area of a circle and circumference. 

In 6th grade science, students completed Unit F: The Earth in Space and Unit G: Exploring Space. In Unit F, students explored sunlight and shadows, measuring shadows as a measure of time and relating that to a day on Earth. We also explored how the Earth rotates around its axis and revolves around the Sun, creating the day-night cycle and the seasons. We viewed a year from space using a computer simulation and recorded the axis tilt of the Earth connecting this to the seasons throughout a year. We also explored the Moon and its phases by making our own observations and through the use of a moon phase computer simulation. We also discussed the tides and how the Moon influences high and low tides and made connections to our earlier, unit on erosion. We also explored the planets and their revolutions around the Sun. In Unit G, students explored the history of space exploration, how to observe objects in space, telescope technology, and how to classify space objects. We also explored Earth and its position in the solar system along with how big other planets are and the Sun. We learned how scientists use remote sensing to get a picture of the surface of a planet without ever visiting the planets. We also completed an investigation, modeling remote sensing. We also explored universal gravitation the effects of gravity.

Room 212 – 7/8th Grade Math
Mr. Behrooz
In grade 8, after an in depth study of solving systems of equations and their use in our daily lives, we turned our attention to “Transformational Geometry”. In this unit students learned the following:
  • Properties of Translation, Reflection, and Rotation
  • Algebraic representation of transformations
  • Properties of Dilation and discussing similar figures
  • Using the concept of similar figures to indirectly measure the heights of different object such as trees, buildings, and flag poles
  • Properties of Dilations and algebraic representation of each dilation
In unit 5, Measurement and Geometry we discussed the following:
  • Angle relationship in parallel lines and triangles
  • Angle theorems for triangles
  • Using The Pythagorean Theorem to find the distance of two points on coordinate plane
  • Volume of Cylinders, cones, spheres; and their relationships to each other
Finally, in our last unit of our studies, Statistics; students encountered the following concepts:
    • If possible, finding a trend line in a scatter plot to make predictions
    • Analyzing information and data, using two-way frequency and relative frequency tables.
As always, our students were encouraged to make real life connection with all the concepts that they have studied.

Our seventh graders completed their geometry unit from the previous quarter before turning their attention to Statistics and probability.

In Geometry, the following concepts were discussed:
    • Similar shapes and scale drawings
    • Geometric drawings
    • Cross sections of 3 – dimensional figures
    • Angle relationships
    • Area, circumference of circles
    • Finding area and perimeter of composite figures
    • Finding the surface area and volume of some 3 – dimensional composite figures such as prisms and pyramids.
In Statistics units, students learned the following:
    • Examining random samples and population of a set of data to make inferences
    • Generating random sample(s) and examining its validity
    • Analyzing and comparing data using box and whisker plots
    • Comparing differences in centers of variability to measure and compare populations (sets of data).
In our final unit of our studies, Probability; students were engaged in the following:
    • Understanding the concept and mathematical definition of probability
    • Comparing experimental with theoretical probability
    • Making predictions based on experimental probability of a an event
    • Understanding compound events; dependent and independent events
    • Comparing combination with Permutation of an event, where order matters
At times, probability problems could be quite challenging, our students learned how to persevere and apply their knowledge when encountering such situations.

Room 214 – 7/8th Grade Social Studies
Mr. Drosos
I wanted to take this time to thank all the parents/guardians and friends of Farnsworth for another great school year. The students have grown to be more responsible, a year wiser and have persevered through the challenges of a rigorous school wide curriculum. To my 8th grade students, I wish you all the best in your high school years and beyond. Always remember to embrace the struggles and the hurdles that will come your way for they will make your journey more memorable and rewarding. To the 7th grade students, we look forward to having you for another year here at Farnsworth. You have grown by leaps and bounds this year and we cannot wait to take the next step of our journey in the coming fall. I want to wish all the families a great and safe summer. Thank you again for your neverending support; together we all make Farnsworth the special place that it is.

Room 207 – 7/8th Grade Science
Mrs. Connolly
The class of 2017 is preparing for graduation. We could not be more proud of all the wonderful accomplishments they have achieved over the last ten years. We wish them the best of luck in their future and hope they find much success.

Our seventh graders are looking forward to becoming the head of the school. We are thrilled to have such a fine group of kids returning in the fall and our proud of their progress as well.

We encourage all the kids to spend some time over the summer investigating the wonderful opportunities we have in our city. Get your free passes at the local library and head down to the museums. Check out a good book to read and of course practice math!! Learning never takes a summer vacation! Let’s come back fresh for a wonderful new school year.

Room 210 – 7/8th Grade English/Language Arts
Mrs. Loch
The 7th Grade has just completed a novel unit on Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor. This novel tells the story of the Logans, a black family struggling to maintain human dignity and personal freedoms in a racist Mississippi during the Great Depression. Through this novel study, the students learned about many racist situations that were common in the South in the 1930’s including lynchings, sharecropping and the Jim Crow laws. Also, woven into the plot, were the economic problems of the Depression and the students were introduced to the concepts of buying things on credit along with paying mortgages and property taxes. The students participated in many activities while reading this novel including a literary study for plot and character development, symbolism, conflict and theme. This novel taught the students many lessons, but the two most important lessons the students took away from this novel study are the importance of family loyalty and the determination to reach their goals.

In their 4th quarter unit, the 8th Grade “read” the novel Monster by Walter Dean Myers. The novel is written like a screenplay with journal entries mixed in, and instead of reading the novel, the students listened to an audio version in class. This unit focused on teaching students to visualize as they read, to analyze point of view and establish point of view bias, and to form good discussion habits. The novel is about a fourteen year old black boy named Steve Harmon. Steve is on trial for felony murder because the state believes he was involved in a robbery that took the life of the store’s owner. Steve attempts to escape his reality by writing the trial as a movie. During this unit, the students considered issues of moral decisions and making good judgements; and how these choices affect the community in which they live. This unit also addressed setting, characterization, plot structure, context clues, irony using an anticipation guide, writing activities, assessments and graphic organizers. Hopefully, the 8th Graders will carry one of the main themes of the novel with them in high school: You can persevere through hard times if you always have hope.

Room 205 - Library – Mrs. Shugrue
Congratulations to all the students who earned their ‘Six Flags Read To Succeed’ tickets to Great America! All tickets will be distributed by the end of this week. Please note that the tickets are not valid until this coming Monday, June 12th, and must be used by August 6th. Parents...please note that the free ticket can be exchanged for a season ticket for $29.99!

I hope all of our students and families have a wonderful and safe summer full of fun and reading.

Art – Mrs. Tufano
As we wrap up the school year and send projects home, Farnsworth students have two final art displays. 5th grade students have decorated the auditorium and surrounding area with their flower weavings. These will remain up for 8th grade graduation, kindergarten celebration, and the spring assembly. 7th grade students also have artwork being displayed. Their artwork can be found in the library and is a visual representaion of the research they completed for library class. 7th grade art will remain on display through next school year.

PE/Health – Ms. Barnhart & Mr. Knoeckl
Upon finishing our soccer unit, our classes also worked on different in-door stations with new equipment the school received. We also are taking advantage of nice days and soaking up the vitamin D while playing outside. The Health department finished up our sexual health education course. For the remainder of the school year, we will include kickball, ultimate frisbee, soccer, more outdoor games, and a few team-building activities. Here's to another great year under the belt!