Classroom News - November 2019
As we enter the beautiful fall months, we continue practicing important classroom routines, learning about each other and exploring literacy, numeracy and the world around us.
We have been investigating leaves and have done some artwork with them focusing on the patterns and designs within each one. We have also learned about pumpkins and their growth cycle through stories, handling real pumpkins and drawing and labeling them in our Journals. We were all excited to find our own pumpkin during our outdoor pumpkin hunt!
We continue to explore patterning and sorting through our math centers which allow for many opportunities to see and create patterns in a variety of ways. Next, we will begin exploring letters and their associated sounds continuing to build our foundation for literacy.
The Grade Ones will host their Celebration of Learning on November 7, 2019 at 6:30 where they will showcase their Self Identity Project. The children have been exploring, studying and creating their own self-portraits based on the styles of famous artists. Grade One Families are invited to join us as we celebrate our individuality and uniqueness.
In math, the children are investigating number concepts through games, skip counting, patterns and problem solving tasks. The children are learning to work with perseverance, generosity and cooperation during group activities.
Our inquiry into family will be our focus for the upcoming months where we will discover new traditions and celebrations that are unique to each of our families. These discoveries will guide our reading, writing and art work.
It is hard to believe that it is November already! We will begin our investigation of Magnetism this month through several hands on learning experiences. We are looking forward to participating in a week long Escape Room Residency at the end of the month to demonstrate and apply our learning!
In Social Studies we have been exploring Calgary's past. Students are learning about how the Blackfoot people lived off the land. We were surprised to learn that the Indigenous people used almost every part of the buffalo, even their hooves and dung! Our next addition to our table top will be the Fur Trade. We can't wait to find out what we can buy with beaver pelts!
Thank you to all our amazing volunteers for joining us at Heritage Park. Your gift of time helped make this field trip a great success! We would also like to welcome our student teachers, Ms, Edwards (Room 18), Mrs. Senek (Room 19) and Ms.Tapp (Room 13) to our Grade Two team. We look forward to working with them over the next 5 weeks!
We’ve had a busy few months in grade 3. Room 8 and room 9 attended library school and had the opportunity to explore Calgary’s new Central library. Students spent time journaling and exploring the question “how are we connected?” during their time at the library. Room 7 also had the opportunity to spend a morning exploring the Central library and an afternoon at the Glenbow Museum. Thank you so much to our wonderful parent volunteers for supporting us on these field trips.
In Language Arts, students have begun participating in word work groups. All three classes have been re-grouped according to their learning needs and they are exploring vocabulary with their group. Students have also been exploring connections in literature and will be beginning to work in guided reading groups.
In Science, we are continuing our investigations into Rocks and Minerals. On November 15th, we are having an in-school presentation for Rocks and Minerals. Our next science unit, hearing and sound, will begin on December 15th.
In Social Studies, we are studying cultures and communities around the world. Each child will be working on a Heritage project researching their personal ancestry and sharing family traditions with the class.
As mathematicians, our focus has been on increasing patterns and solving problems related to this concept. We have also been practicing skip counting by 2, 5, 10, 3, and 4. We will be introducing skip counting by 25 and 100. We will be learning how to count to 1000 using various strategies, and represent numbers up to 1000 in various ways. We will continue to work on mastery of basic facts through math games! Students will also continue working with strategies to collect data and display it through graphs and charts.
In Language Arts, we have been learning to express our thoughts clearly and creatively. Students have been learning how to use descriptive words to liven up their writing. They have also been working on ensuring they understand and can implement proper punctuation.
We have been reading and writing responses to the novel Wonder.
In Mathematics, we have completed the unit on Patterning and Relations. Students have learned how to represent, describe and extend patterns and relationships, and how to use charts and tables to solve problems. They have practiced solving one-step equations involving a symbol to represent an unknown number. Our next unit is on Numeration. Students will learn to compare numbers to 10,000, represent 4 digit numbers in a variety of ways, explore place value and communicate about ordering numbers.
In Science, in order to share resources, we have been studying different units. Room 14 and 16 have focused on the Light and Shadow unit. Students have discovered that light and shadows fall along a predictable path by observing shadows and their motions relative to a light source and discovered that mirrors, prisms and a variety of other materials can affect that path by reflecting and refracting light and by splitting light into colours. They have learned to identify sources of light, describe the interaction of light with different materials, and infer the pathway of a light beam. Their next Science unit will be Wheels and Levers.
Room 17 and 15 began with the Wheels and Levers unit, examining how simple machines are used to change the speed or force of movement and demonstrate a practical understanding of wheels, gears and levers by constructing devices in which energy is transferred. They will be moving on to Light and Shadow next.
In Social Studies, we have been studying the geography and land forms in Alberta. Next, we will explore the geographic, cultural, linguistic, economic and historical characteristics that define quality of life in Alberta.
Mrs. Cooper’s trip to stampede school has been moved to February.
In math, grades fives have continued to engage in problem solving tasks and decoding word problems. We are identifying what the problem is asking and working on ways to show all of our work. Students are also learning how to add and subtract decimals based numbers.
In language arts, students are beginning to explore expository writing as they work through our study of the physical regions of Canada. Students are working to research information, put it into their own words and write a cohesive paragraph.
In science, we are continuing our study of weather and building our understanding that our weather is impacted by the earth’s rotation around the sun and the movement of air in the atmosphere. Students have gathered specific weather data from cities across Canada and examining extreme weather events in those cities.
We continue our look at the physical geography of Canada in Social Studies. Students are gathering information about each region and will apply their knowledge through creative representation.
In Language Arts, students continue to research their Notable and they are completing detailed jot notes organized into different time periods of their Notables’ life. Notable Portrait day has been set for November 5th morning and the Night of Notables will be November 20 evening. Our new suspenseful read aloud, “Among the Hidden”, connects to Social Studies topics around government.
In Science, students are wrapping up their inquiry into Trees and Forests and will be moving into Sky Science, which marks the beginning of our study into the Moon phases. The Night Sky Journal project will begin with the New Moon on November 26th. This inquiry into the night sky includes nightly entries, sketching the moon and recording their wonderings and discoveries. There is an upcoming in-school field trip in December with the Astrodome. Our astronomer for hire will provoke curiosities and show students many wonders of the night sky in the portable planetarium.
Throughout Math, we continue to develop our number sense skills and computational strategies through practice and project. Grade sixes continue to build on estimation & mental strategies through weekly computation quizzes to build automaticity and prepare for PATs. Number sense concepts will extend into topics of prime/composite numbers, multiples and factors and statistics (analyzing and interpreting data).
In Social, students are examining Canada’s levels of government, representation at the local level, and government services. Students will begin to make the connection that they have a voice in government and begin to feel empowered to use it. With this year’s Federal election, students participated in a Mock Student Vote and collected and analyzed voting results through a cross curricular study.