February Edition of the DMS Newsflash!

Deans Mill Student Senate fosters school community - The Westerly Sun - February 1, 2016


Upcoming Events

February 11 BOE Meeting 7:00 PM at SHS

February 15-16  President’s Day Recess-No School

February 19    DMS Movie Night:  Minions!

February 23    Math & Science Night 6:30 TO 8 PM at DMS

February 28    Sugar Rush Concert at the Velvet Mill  from 4-7PM

March 1      PTO Meeting 6:30 PM in the DMS Library

March 2      Read Across America Day

March 4      Author Illustrator Day

March 10    Early Dismissal for Students at 1:10 PM

March 10    BOE Meeting  7:00 PM at SHS

March 11    Staff Development:  No School for students

March 14    Report Cards Issued

March 21    World Down Syndrome Day!

March 25    Good Friday-No School for students

Math at DMS

The focus of this month’s article is on the Deans Mill School Math program.  We implement a rigorous, hands-on math program that helps students develop the necessary skills to apply concepts to real world applications.  One of the primary goals of our math program is to help students gain the essential skills for future success.  With the assistance of our Mathematics Teacher Leaders, we would like to provide you with an overview of our programming.

                                     Investigations Math in K & 1

Kindergarten and First Grade students use a math program called Investigations.

In Kindergarten, students focus primarily on two important areas: numbers & counting and addition & subtraction.  Young students develop their understanding of the operations of addition and subtraction by having many opportunities to count, visualize, model, solve and discuss different types of problems. Many of the number and counting activities in Kindergarten build a bridge to the operations of addition and subtraction, as students add a small amount to a set or remove a small amount from a set and figure out, “How many now?” One of the ways students are introduced to addition and subtraction is via story problems about combining and separating. They retell the stories, act them out, and solve them, by modeling the action involved and using counting strategies. Students also play a variety of games that model the operations of addition and subtraction. They have repeated experiences joining two or more amounts, and removing an amount from a whole.

In Grade One, students work with whole numbers and place value throughout the year—including grouping numbers into tens and ones as they learn to add

and subtract up through 20. Students also use charts, tables, and

diagrams to solve problems.  Right now in first grade students are focused on collecting and organizing data.  First graders create their own representations of the data they collect, organizing their data and providing an image that helps them describe what the data show. Students are also introduced to several standard forms of representation, including picture graphs, tallies, charts, and bar graphs.  By discussing and comparing representations, students consider what features of a representation help communicate a clear description of the data.

For more information you can access the Investigations family page:  https://investigations.terc.edu/families/


Eureka Math in Partnership with Investigations - Grades 2-4

Students in Grades 2, 3, and 4 have been utilizing some new math materials this school year.  Eureka Math is a logical and systematic approach that fosters problem solving and higher level thinking while aligned to the Common Core State Standards.  Students learn to work collaboratively while tackling challenging math concepts. 

What Eureka Math is and is not

Using real-world problems     Not endless exercises without context

Understanding why                            Not isolated memorization

Explaining your reasoning                   Not working alone

Doing math in your head                    Not relying on a calculator


During each daily lesson, students participate in a variety of learning activities.  In the early grades, a focus upon fact fluency is daily practice.  Students complete a variety of word problems and receive immediate feedback during the lesson, while also collaborating with other students to formulate solutions.  At the end of each lesson, students take part in an “Exit Ticket,” a very brief check-in where the teacher can determine understanding.  With this information, small groups can be created the next day to reteach and support any students.  This allows for students’ growth to be monitored closely and continually.  Further supporting learning are homework tasks that perfectly mirror classwork where students have an opportunity to apply skills independently at home. 

Eureka Math has challenging and engaging math materials for students.  There are also resources for parents to help their children at home.  You can follow this link for further parent information from Eureka Math.  http://greatminds.net/parents

*Special thanks to Kristen Morehouse and Tim Whipple for their contributions to this article.

If you have any specific questions about your child’s math program, please feel free to reach out to their classroom teacher for further explanation.


Jenn and Tom 

Deans Mill Community Agreement -The DMS WISH

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