Monday, March 25, 2013

Try and Try Again.

Good morning!

This week has been so rich with ideas and and questions!  Friends continue to decipher the English language and all of it's little tricks.  They know about so many teams, we documented the -ch-, -sh-, and the -ou- team.  What other teams in words can you recognize?

As friends continue their exploration with words, they have started a list of tips for when to use uppercase letters in their writing.  The students are also becoming familiar with the term pronouns and are identifying them as they show up in our lives!

The class has been working on their Equation Stories for some time now, making multiple drafts and checking their stories for clarity.  A few are now at the point where they are ready to act out their equation story with the help of their peers!  The students are thinking about how to best personify the characters in the story and make the story come to life!

"Once upon a time, there were four dogs at the store..."

"Then four more dogs came.  Now there are eight dogs in the store."

"Once upon a time, I had two flowers..."

"And then it rained and two more flowers grew..."

"Now I have four flowers."

 "I have five apples..."

"I bought five more apples.  Now I have ten apples."

We have been continuing our discussion about the things that we wanted to learn more about and saw that a topic that appeared a lot was wanting to know more about birds.  The class generated a table of different questions about birds and categorized them accordingly.

We will be breaking this chart down even further to really get some core topics that we would like to research more regarding birds, their habitat, diet, anatomy, and how they fly.  They are such mysterious creatures...

Our 8th Grade Buddies joined us this week to help us proofread and edit the hypothesis about gravity that we have been working on in our journal.  Over the past few weeks, the class has been going back to their journal entries and adding to their ideas, as well as erasing any mistakes.  This has left some work looking not so clear, so the kids transferred their idea onto a fresh, clean piece of paper and the results are stunning!  It's wonderful to see how serious the students are about their work and wanting to make sure their idea is legible for others to understand.

Check out some of their Before and After shots!  Some friends plan on doing a 3rd draft after rereading their work and noticing some sentences were not clear.

We ended our week with celebrating the fact that we have solved our division problem regarding how many balloons each student will get to take home from our 100th Day of School celebration.  The students worked in small groups to find that each child would get FOUR balloons each, even if we have 16 extra that no one will get to take home, because it would not be even, or fair.

One concern was about how they would be able to take them home since they only have two hands, but four balloons to carry.  One friend suggested tying them to a string, so I showed them a way to do that.  It was neat to see the friends who moved quickly through their work offer their assistance to friends who were still practicing getting the string just right.  We have so many helpers in our class!

Love, Gaby