News of the week in our class.

  • Good Afternoon,
    Here we are at the end of Third Quarter Progress Reports already!  Time is flying by.  In math, we are working on 2-dimensional figures in a hierarchy, or order.  In reading, we are finishing up or Iditarod unit and moving on to Woodsong story.  In science we are exploring force and motion, acceleration and velocity, and Newton Laws of Motion.  
    On Februrary 11th, at 6:00 pm, we will be having a community meeting at Peralta.  We encourage all parents/guardians to come and share your comments regarding the issues the AJUSD is now facing.  A letter is also being mailed home, but I wanted to make sure that you know about this important day and time.
    Thank you,
    Mrs. Bliss:)
    5th Grade Teacher
    Peralta Trail Elementary School
    Good Afternoon,
    Hard to believe it is January 12th, and into third quarter already.  My students have been working hard on our Geometry Unit starting with finding the area of rectangles last week.  This week we are working on Volume of Rectangular Prisms for math.  For reading, we are now on cause and effect relationships between individuals, events, or ideas in informational text.  For Science, we are learning about gravity, force, and Newton's Laws of Motion.  We are going to be presenting our Colony Presentations before Progress Report three is over, so it will be a part of that grade.  The kids and I are pretty excited to see all the 3-D models and the presentations of the Thirteen Original Colonies.
    Starting today, my students are going to be earning their Funday Friday.  Funday Friday will occur the last 20 to 30 minutes of class for students to be on educational Chrome Book Games, like Sumdog, or playing the many games that I have in class that are educational also.  In order to participate in Funday Friday, students will need to have all classwork, homework, and tests completed on time for the week. Reading Logs need to be filled out by the student and signed by the parent every night, and the sheets that are attached to the Reading Log need to be completed also. Those students that do not get any of the above completed, with have that 20 to 30 minutes with me to try to complete as much as possible, to raise their grade.  I have tried lunch time with me for second quarter, but it was not very productive.  Hopefully, by focusing on the positive, my students will love the incentive and strive to complete their work daily.
    Thank you for your help at home, it truly makes a difference every day")
    Thank you,
    Mrs. Bliss
    5th Grade Teacher
    Peralta Trail Elementary School
    Cell:  602-826-1270
    Good Afternoon,
    Today was a wonderful first day with my new students.  We focused on procedures and expectations today, and will continue to practice these through the week.  We also created a fortune teller about each us so that we were able to get to know each other a little better. Students will be bringing home their Agenda, with all homework and any classwork they did not complete, and I am asking that parents/guardians please sign these once the work is completed, nightly.  
    At 10:00 am, 5th grade takes a minute and eats a healthy snack.  Healthy snacks can include fruit, granola bars, yogurt, cheese stick, or anything else your child enjoys snacking.  Please do not include candy bars, soda, Taki's, or chips, as part of their healthy snack.  This can be part of their lunch if you like.  We eat lunch at 12:20 pm, so a healthy snack is really needed to keep them focused and on task:)
    Thank you so much for sharing your child with me, we had a fantastic first day together!
    Thank you,
    Mrs. Karen Bliss
    5th grade teacher
    Good Morning,
    Next week we will being doing our AIMS testing. Students have been working very hard preparing for these tests all school year. I am confident that all of them will be successful. Please have students eat a good breakfast and get plenty of sleep! It is very important students are at school on time and for the entire day.
    Students may bring a healthy snack to enjoy, if you would like to donate a healthy snack for the class that is appreciated. 
    In math we have been learning about elapsed time and changes in temperature. We also reviewed fractions, decimals, and percent operations. 
    Our reading lessons have incoporated Science, learning about various ecosystems. Additionally, students wrote persuasive letters on an endangered animal of their choice. What great writing the students did! Ask your child to share their essay with you. 
    This Friday there is no school, so enjoy your family time together.
    Also, please complete the survey: instructions are below. 
    Thank you for all you do at home!
    Have a wonderful weekend.
     It's on the PTES website, at,  they will need to go to PTES and the link to the parent survey button is on the left side. 
    p.s.  I love black jelly beans:) 
    Hello Parents!
    This past week has been busy! We are hard at work! In class we are continuing to learn and grow as writers. This week we wrote persuasive letters about a business in our hometown that they have a problem with, and how they think they can solve it. We are also going to mail these letters out once they are all typed up. Ask students to share their thoughts and arguments on the subject. In math we completed Topic 16 on coordinate plane, many students had the opportunity to design a themed city!  In reading we are focused on the theme, main idea, and other reading strategies, within a story. We are reading about Oceans, in the Harcourt reading series.
    Our focus for the next few weeks will be on preparing for AIMS testing. Students will be reviewing and learning test taking strategies. 
    AIMS testing will be Monday through Thursday April 14through the 17.  
    Attendance over the next 2 weeks in extremely important for students to be successful. Please do your best to schedule appointments around the these days. 
    Have a wonderful weekend!
    Thank you for all your support at home,
    Mrs. Karen A. Bliss
    5th Grade Teacher
    Peralta Trails Elementary School

    February 12, 2014
    Good Morning,
    I would like to introduce Miss Gardner, our 5th grade Student Teacher, from NAU.  She has been in our class rooom since quarter three started.  Little by little, she has taken over completely at the Teacher, and I have become the helper:)  This week and next week she will be the Teacher in the class room, handling all responsibilities that I would normally do.  She is doing a fantastic job and we are so very proud of her:)
    Hope everyone had a relaxing weekend.  Quick reminder that next Monday, February 17th, is a no school day because of President's Day.  Also, that week is our Spirit Week here at Peralta.  Monday, no school.  Tuesday is dress like a twin day.  Wednesday is 80's day and a half day with early release.  Thursday is nerds day.  Friday is school colors.  Then, the weekend, February 22, Saturday, is the Lost Dutchman Day Parade.
    We just finished Progress Report 3, for third quarter.  Please continue to encourage your students to work hard everyday at school and to do the best that they can:)  Quarter 3 ends on March 7th, Friday, then it is a week off for Spring Break.  So your child still has the opportunity to finish this quarter strong.
    For Math, we are finishing up our Data Unit for Topic 14, in enVision Math.  We are learning about the different types of graphs and how to use measures of central tendencies, which are mean/average, median, mode, range, and outliers. 
    For Reading, we are reading the story, :Satchmo's Blues"  learning about theme and how to more descriptive words in our writing.
    For Science, we are learning about Newton's Three Laws of Motion, force, push and pull.  We are creating a fold out with many resources in it.
    For Social Studies, we are learning about the original Thirteen Colonies.  Next, students will create a 3-D scene to go along with the colony they chose to write about and share with the class.
    Please read the following letter from our school Nurse, Miss Mary, and our Principal, Mrs. Golemon:

    Cold/Flu Season has arrived

    These are some general guidelines to follow in this regard.

    Stay home if……...

    Illness with a fever….. an oral temp. of greater than 100 degrees.

    May return when fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever- reducing agents such as Tylenol and Ibuprofen.

    Symptoms of the Flu

    People who have the flu often feel some or all of these symptoms:

    A fever or feeling feverish/chills


    Sore throat

    Runny or stuffy nose

    Muscle or body aches


    Fatigue (feeling very tired)

    Some people may also:

    Throw up

    Have loose stools (diarrhea)

    Symptoms of Common Cold


    Stuffy or runny nose

    Sore throat


    Watery eyes

    Mild headache

    Mild body aches

    If the student is seen by a healthcare provider and is tested for H1N1, please notify the nurse as soon as possible if it is positive. Thank you and be well!


    It is also good to talk about cold and flu prevention:

    1. Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
    2. If you or your child gets sick with flu-like illness, CDC recommends that you (or your child) stay home for at least 24 hours after the fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. The fever should be gone without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.
    3. While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.
    4. Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
    5. Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
    6. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
    7. Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like the flu.
    8. If an outbreak of flu or another illness occurs, follow public health advice. This may include information about how to increase distance between people and other measures.
    Here a few resources that might help, too:
    Hope you have a wonderful week,
    Thank you,
    Mrs. Bliss and Miss Gardner
    Hello Families,
    I hope you have all enjoyed a wonderful weekend of family time!
    Progress Reports for Quarter 2, were posted online Friday. So, you can check your childs grades online.  If you have not learned how to do that, please stop by the office and show your ID and they will give you your log in and password for your child(ren).
    For math, we are currently in Topic 8, Numerical Expression, Pattern, and Relationships.  You will be using variable to write expressions, universal order of operations, simplifying expressions, evaluating expressions, andd and subtract expressions, multiply and divide expressions, patterns: extending tables, and variable and expressions.  The math practices that will be using for this topic include, Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.  Reason abstractly and quantitiatively.  Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.  Model with mathematics.  Use appropriate tools strategically.  Attend to precision.  Look for and make use of structure.  Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.
    Monday we have another DARE lesson scheduled with Officer Marty Harshman.   We are discussing choices and consequences, both positive and negative. Ask students to share with you. We also discussed strategies to avoid drugs, alcohol, and other bad substances.  Students created skits to model walk away, ignore, change the subject, and just say no.  They were pretty entertaining to watch and record:)
    We are on Chapter 7, for Number the Stars. Simultaneously, we are researching certain parts of World War II, that pertain to this novel. I believe the students are enjoying their learning of this unit.
    Our studies of the human body in Science have sparked some interesting discussions in class. Have students explain what they have learned. Students have traced life size models of themselves to recreate five body systems.
    As a school we are participating in a PB&J food drive. Please send in donations through out the week.
    The AJHS Drama Department is proud to present Jean Shepherd's classic "A Christmas Story." Performances are December 4 - 6 at 7 pm in the PAC. General Admission tickets are $6/adults and $5/students and seniors. Reserved seats are $8 all ages. Tickets can be purchased at the AJHS bookstore, the District Office, or at the door the night of the show. AJHS Culinary will be preparing a pre-show turkey dinner each night for $10/person. Dinner will start at 5PM in the AJHS cafeteria. For dinner and show reservations contact Paul Lanphear in the drama department at 982-1110 x5317 or
    Science Family Night is on Thursday, January 30th. Arizona Science
    Center will be present Family Engineering, up to 12 hands-on
    activities!! Please plan on attending this spectacular event:)
    Thank you for all your support!
    Karen Bliss
    5th Grade Teacher
    November 12, 2013
    I hope you all enjoyed the extended weekend. Happy Veteran's Day to all all those who have served and who are serving now.  We deeply appreciate your service, our freedom, and your sacrafices.
    The 2nd quarter progress ends this Friday, be sure to view your students grades through ParentVue for the most up to date grades.
    I have an exciting week planned for students. In reading class we are continuing Number the Stars. With the weather cooling off our class will be visiting our natural habitat at the school for independent reading time. Students are welcome to bring a towel to sit on.
    We will continue to learn and discuss the human body systems in Science.
    Our Math lessons will be focusing on multiplication and division of decimals, with Topics 6 and 7. Please, help students to solidify this concept by discussing decimal use in life.
    Dont forget to send in spare change for our "Change for Change" drive!!!
    Thanks for all your support at home, I truly appreciate the time and effort involved:)
    Thank you,
    Karen Bliss
    5th Grade Teacher






    October 28, 2013:)

    Dear Parents/Guardians:

    On Thursday, October 31st 5th grade is going to have an afternoon of crafting, gaming, and cooking. :0)  We will need supplies to make rice crispy treats and popcorn balls, so if you are able to send in one or more of the following items by Wednesday, October 30th that would be great.  We need:


    -corn syrup


    -white vinegar

    -rice crispies

    -bag of m&m's



    -wax paper


    If you have any questions or concerns please email us at,, or

    Thank you for your help and support!


    5th grade team

    Karen Bliss

    Julia Goucher

    Stacy White






    September 30, 2013

    Good Morning,

    Hope your weekend was wonderful! We are on the home stretch with our last week on Quarter 1 ending this Friday!  It has been fantastic to learn more about your children and to watch them grow academically.

    D.A.R.E. starts today!  Officer Harshman introduced Drug Abuse Resistance Education to our 5th graders today.  Every other Monday he will come in and teach our kids about D.A.R.E.

    As a reward for 1st quarter reading we are having the band G.A.S. play a live show for all students on Thursday, October 3rd. G.A.S. aka Guys at SMES are a local teacher band that ROCK THE HOUSE!!!! This is going to be a special event for our school. They will be selling t-shirts for $10 and stickers for $1, so if you want to purchase concert memorbilia for your student it would be great (of course, you don't have to though!). Order forms will be going home tomorrow.
    You should have received your parent-teacher conference slips on Friday. We assigned times to try and make conferences easier and more convenient for those who have siblings at Peralta. If you have any conflicts with the allotted times, please let me know and I will try and adjust accordingly. If we have to have a phone conference, or schedule it for a day after school that would be fine as well.

    For math, we just Post tested Topic 3 and are Pretesting Topic 4 today.  Topic 4 is dividing whole numbers, with rounding and estimating.  We will also use the inverse operation, opposite operation, which is multiplication to check our work.

    For reading, we are finishing up The Giver.  I am introducing our new spelling word list today.  Students will find the definition and put it in their own words and write a sentence using that vocab word.  Correct spelling on the test this Friday is worth one point and using the word in a sentence correctly will be worth two points.  Soon, a summary using these vocab words will be added to the spelling test.

    For social studies, we will be learning about Christopher Columbus and early explorers.  Students will visit virtual museums, work individually and with a partner, and have choices on their learning.

    This Wednesday is a half day.  Dismissal is at 12:18 pm. Please make sure if you pick up your child/children, you are here in a timely manner.

    Thank you so very much,

    Mrs. Karen A. Bliss

    5th Grade Teacher

    Peralta Trail Elementary School



    September 23, 2013

    Good Afternoon,

    Hope you are enjoying your weekend time together.  We had a quiet weekend, no grandkids.  Two are sick and the other is visiting with his Dad.

    We celebrated Constitution week last Friday with the Daughters of the Revolution coming to PTES and doing skits to explain to the students about the Constitution.  At the end, students were encouraged to ask questions.  One question was, "How do you feel about the slaves only being counted as 2/3 of a vote and the women not allowed to vote at all?"  Wow!  Very insightful questioning from that young man.

    For math, we are finishing up Topic 3, Multiplying whole numbers with up to three-digits.  I modeled how to multiply whole numbers using the magic zero when it is two or three-digit numbers.  I have students that know how to do the Lattice Method and the Kim Sutton Partial Product way.  So, on Monday, all my math students will be introduced to all three. Topic 4 is dividing with whole numbers.  Students will also round, estimate, and check their work with the inverse, or opposite operation, which reinforces Topic 3.

    For reading, we are on Chapter 15 of The Giver.  During the reading, we discuss words we do not know using context clues, inference, and trying to figure out the root word.  The Giver is rich in vocabulary, so all my students are greatly increasing their vocabulary.  After each chapter that is read, we discuss as a class, the characters, the plot, and the setting.  I write it on the board and students copy it into their reading spiral notebook.  Then I give class time, usually 10 minutes for the students to write 2 to 4 sentences to each of these prompts, I felt...., I thought....., and I wonder......  If students do not complete this in class, then it becomes homework that night.

    For science, we completed our first chapter, plant and animal cells.  It was due Thursday, but a few were not done, so I gave class time on Friday also, to finish their three choice menus.  I can not give any more class time for this project as students had two weeks to complete three projects, plus an extra day.  However, I will still take them up until Tuesday for a grade, which is an extra week beyond the due date.

    For social studies, this week we will be learning about the 13 original colonies and the settlers that came their.  We will be using maps, our Atlas, and various resources to discover all we can about these brave people that left everything behind to start a new life.

    I am sorry that I could not get into Synergy/Genesis to enter grades for math, reading, science, and writing.  I even tried back door methods that have worked in the past, but do not work anymore.  I will be entering grades after school and will try to have all my grades completed by Tuesday or Wednesday afternoon.

    This quarter is almost over!  Amazing how time went by so fast.  Please check your students' agenda each night before you sign it to see if they completed everything that is written down in it.  If you have signed the agenda, that I collect every Monday, I assume that you have checked for the completion of homework first.  I have a few students that have their agenda signed and the homework is not completed that was written down.  Hopefully, with this communication, those few students can get back on track:)

     This is Constitution week and we had The Daughters of the Revolution came to explain the Amendments.

    Thank you,

    Mrs. Karen A. Bliss

    5th grade Teacher

    Peralta Trail Elementary School






    September 16, 2013

    Good Morning,

    Hope you had a wonderful relaxing weekend.  We had our Granddaughter, Aubri, for Saturday night so we didn't want our time with her to end!  She is 14 months now and growing way too fast.

    For reading, we are still reading The Giver, maybe done by the end of this week, or early next week.  We are summarizing each chapter, writing I thought, I felt, I wonder, and we will be adding a character, plot, and setting, for each group of chapters.  These reading journals will be graded every Friday for participation.

    For math, we are working on Topic 3, multiplication properties and multiplying with one, two, and three digit numbers.  Students that scored 90% or higher will be on problem solving projects.

    For science, we are finishing up or tic-tac-toe choice boards for animal and plant cells and learning about the tower garden.  The tower garden will rotate to homerooms after each harvest, so we will have a chance to plant and take care of it also.  The goal is to grow enough vegetables to supply the salad bar in the cafeteria.

    Please remember that Wednesday, September 18th, is early release day, dismissal is at 12:25.

    Hope you have a fantastic week!

    Thank you,

    Mrs. Karen A. Bliss:)

    5th grade teacher

    Peralta Trail Elementary School


    September 9, 2013

    Good Afternoon,

    Wow! This is week six of this school year already!  This is amazing how fast time has gone by.  On Friday, you should have been able to see your child's grades on line.  If you are not able to log in to see the grades, please contact the office as Progress Reports for Quarter 1 have been submitted.

    For math, we are finishing up Topic 2, adding and subtracting decimals with rounding and estimating.  We should be ready to take the Post Test on Tuesday or Wednesday and take the Pretest for Topic 3.  Students that earn 90% or higher on the Pretest are on Projects while I am teaching the class.  Topic 4 is dividing with one, two, and three digits.  There will also be estimating, rounding, and checking your work with the inverse, or opposite, operation, which is multiplying.

    For reading, we are whole group reading, The Giver.  We discuss the theme, context clues to figure out new words we do not know, and transitional words, for this week.  Mrs. Jodi Walker, our Common Core Coach for our district, came in for two days and modeled a "close read" for my class.  This is where students get more out of the reading by circling powerful words, underline words they do not know, and writing notes in the margins.

    For science, we will be finishing up our vocabulary words using the four-square method.  We will also have a tic-tac-toe project sheet that I will hand out and explain this week.  Students will learn about plant and animal cells, look at both under a microscope, and take notes comparing and contrasting them.

    I hope you all had a wonderful weekend with your family.  Thank you for your help at home, it makes all the difference in the classroom.  Please check out our class blog at Mrs. Bliss' Dragon's Den. 


    Thank you,

    Mrs. Karen A. Bliss

    5th grade Teacher

    Peralta Trail Elementary School




    August 26, 2013

    Good Afternoon,

    Hope you have had a wonderful weekend.  We were able to spend time with our oldest Grandson, Bryce, who is 10 years old.  Our other two Grandchildren, Cody, 9 years old, and Aubri, 1 year old, are both sick, so no fun time with them this weekend.  Hopefully you are all in good health and have not caught the back to school cold!

    In Reading, we just finished Chapter 3 in The Giver, by Lois Lowry.  We have written a few journal responses to prompts during class.  However, if your child does not complete the assignment in the time given in class, it then becomes homework for that night.

    ve only had two kids so far that have not completed the in class work and I have noted that on their agendas so parents/guardians know what homework needs to be completed.  We start Chapter 4 on Wednesday.

    For Math, we are reviewing Topic 1 so that we can post test on Wednesday.  We are creating a 3-D cube and writing real life math problems for adding and subtracting decimals.  Then, we will share with a partner and play the game to solve the problems.  Topic 2 delves more into adding and subtracting decimals, learning about the properties of math, and problem solving using decimals.  We will Pretest for Topic 2 on Thursday.

    For our class blog, I have a few students creating Voki's that tell a little blurb about themselves.  These three students will then teach the class how to create their own Voki so that I can post them on our class blog, Mrs. Bliss' Dragon's Den.

    We created Voki's to introduce ourselves on our class blog, click on this site .  They are wonderful, please check them out:)

    Thank you so much for sharing your children with me.  We are getting to know each other a little better in class now and I am enjoying my time with your kids:)

    Thank you,

    Mrs. Karen A. Bliss:)

Granddaughter, Aubri, at the Veteran's Day Parade in Apache Junction