Sunday, February 10, 2013

This Week's Happenings . . .

I didn't realize it had been so long since I posted. To say the least, our classroom has been humming along. We have been at our busiest yet with collecting data for climate change, our colonial simulation, and our student led conferences. Now that our colonial simulation has finished, we will add getting ready for gathering on February 22nd to that list.

Here are some updates as to what is going on in class:

  • Please remember that Student Led Conferences are this Friday, February 15. If you were not able to sign up for a time, I will contact you later in the week to set up an alternative time. If need a reminder as to what your time is, please send me an email. 

  • In reading, we continue studying non-fiction and non-fiction text features such as diagrams, charts, maps, headings and sub-headings, boldface, etc. Students had not realized just how important these features were in non-fiction reading. As we dive head first into lots of non-fiction reading, students are immersed in these features. It's hard not to talk about these features and what information we are supposed to gain from reading them.
  • We have also been talking about climate change for several weeks. This means lots of non-fiction reading and more exposure to those non-fiction text features I just talked about. We have uncovered that this is a pretty complicated subject to investigate. So far we have defined climate change (a change in weather temperature averages over time - 30 years) and that climate change is caused by global warming. This led us to inquire into global warming. So far we have discovered that greenhouse gases, fossil fuels, and human activity have impacted global warming. Currently we are looking into what those greenhouse gases are and where they have come from.  Down the road, we will look at other perspectives of climate change and what those perspectives believe.

  • In math, we have moved into division. So far we are writing and solving division stories in order to help us gain a conceptual image of division. These stories have really forced us to look at remainders and how to address those in our division work.
  • In social studies, we are moving away from our colonial simulation and study of Jamestown and move into studying the original 13 colonies.
  • In writing, we will be writing up our reflections of the colonial simulation using correct paragraphing, indenting, and so on. This will lead us into doing one of our first big projects - students will be putting together their own piece of non-fiction using the same text features we have been studying in reading.
  • Ms. Ruff has also been continuing art club. Various students have been working on art projects at recess on Tuesdays and Fridays. During explorations, students work independently on these art project. Currently, we are working on putting on some large, temporary art installations around the school.