Challenge News

  • What's Happening in Challenge...


    Dates to Remember:

    • Week of January 12 Challenge classes resume

     Kindergarten Testing

    • January 18 – Referrals Due
    • January 21 – Permission Letters to parents
    • Week of January 28 – Parent Testing Meetings
    • February 4 – February 11 – Challenge Testing Window
    • February 25 – Kindergarten Identification and Letters to parents.

     ITBS Administration to current Challenge Program students in grades 3 and 4

    • Weeks of January 21 and 28

     Spring Testing Grades K-4 (for students not tested in the past 12 months)

    • April 5 - Referrals Due
    • April 8 - Permission Letters to parents
    • Week of April 15 - Parent Testing Meetings
    • April 22 – May 21 - Challenge Testing Window


    ITBS Testing for 3rd and 4th Grade Students 


    Postcards have been sent in the mail to inform you that the third and fourth grade students will take the ITBS (Iowa Test of Basic Skills)  the weeks of January 21 and 28. The test will take approximately 40 minutes each week during their regular Challenge time. These results will be used to determine the appropriate educational setting at Dillingham.  You will be contacted by mail the week of February 25 with the results.

    Athena                Myths and Heroes              Zeus


    In January, Challenge students will be completing their research and masks on their characters from Greek Mythology. Students will have a culminating “Greek Live Museum” on  February 1 from 6:00-7:00 at Neblett Elementary. We will present our characters and sample Greek cuisine. Students are encouraged to wear costumes for their presentations. 

    PACES will be sending out a link soon to sign up for food.   Thank you in advance for your help.




    National Greek  Mythology Exam

    Each year the American Classical League offers the National Greek Mythology exam for students in grades 3 and above. We would like to encourage your child to be a part of this exciting educational opportunity. We will be holding school study sessions beginning the first week of December to prepare students for the exam. Students will use the book, D’Aulaires Book of Greek Myths to prepare for the exam if you wish to purchase it. We have several copies, but they will stay in the Challenge class. It is available from It costs about $15. In the past, we have had many students receive high awards, medals and ribbons for this exam. 



    Why Teach Greek Mythology?

    The teaching of mythology provides many varied benefits to students of all ages.  Students come in contact with a variety of world cultures while comparing those cultures to their own.  Mythology also teaches history by examining ancient times and their effect on the modern world.  The study of Greco-Roman and Norse mythology also strengthens students' understanding of language since many English words are derived from characters and events found within.  It can also increase students' appreciation for Literature and art by understanding the many mythological allusions. By studying ancient mythologies, students also start thinking analytically about modern culture, analyzing the traces of ancient mythology has left behind and the legends that have been created in their own day.  
    Mythology combines all these different facets of learning into one object of study.  And the best part is:  Mythological stories are often fun!  If taught correctly, a mythology course can be simultaneously educational and entertaining.
    Because of its multifaceted nature, mythology is hard to categorize into one single subject area.  Some schools teach mythology as a history or sociology course.  Others emphasize the literary importance and teach mythology as an English or Communication Arts course.  Teachers of Latin often teach mythological stories to supplement the study of language.
    No matter which way mythology is taught or to which age group, it is still an important and interesting topic of study.  

    Source -





         This month we will complete our Athenian Secret Math simulation culminating with a wonderful learning experience about the Pythagorean Theorem. Beginning next month,  first and second grade students will  work on Number Sense activities and Codecrackers.  Third and fourth graders will participate in Hands On Equations, a phenomenal algebra program for young students.  This program teaches the basic principles of algebra using manipulatives.  

    To learn more, visit





    Please check your child's Challenge folder each week and help them to remember to return it the following week. Items to look for are Weekly Challenge assignments and notes from the teacher. The newsletter is also sent home in the folder. Please remove items that are in the side that says Keep At Home. Sometimes your child may share their Challenge papers with you, but they are left in the folder. It helps us to know that you are receiving communication if the papers are removed.

    If papers are sent in the side that says: Return to School, then please place them back in the folder and return in time for your child's Challenge day.

    Thank YOU!