I hope everyone had a nice vacation week. We continue to pursue many important classroom initiatives in our final weeks of school. Tomorrow, Tuesday April 25th is our trip to the Concord Museum. Please remember to send your child to school with a snack and a paper bag lunch. We will not be ordering lunch at school since we will be eating at 1:30 pm when we return from the museum.
We are currently reading the book Hatchet by Gary Paulsen in language arts. We are studying the book through the use of essential questions. For example, we recently found evidence from the story to support the idea that Brian has changed since the beginning of the story. These changes are both physical (he is thinner, and tanned) and emotional. He is less fearful and is more tuned in to his natural environment (for survival purposes). We are studying poetry and will be writing poetry in the final week of this month.
In math we are learning how to divide fractions. We are studying word problems related to the division of fractions. We are also learning how to create picture models that represent the division of fractions.
We have completed our study of events leading to the Revolutionary War in social studies and recently took a test on Unit 7 in our social studies text. The children learned about the events leading to the revolution in terms of a cause and effect format. Currently, we are researching important people from the Revolutionary War and important battles from that war. Finished reports will be shared with classmates at the end of the unit.
Wednesday, April 12, 2017
Thursday, March 30, 2017
In math our work has centered on adding and subtracting fractions and mixed numbers as well as multiplying fractions and mixed numbers. Mixed numbers and fractions require the use of multiplication and division in heavy doses. So there is plenty of room for careless mistakes during calculation. Therefore, practice of multiplication and division facts is helpful. I urge all fifth graders to keep their math skills sharp by using flashcards or Reflex Math. Our fraction work is not just confined to learning about the algorithms required to solve number sentences. We are also working on word problems that involve fractions as they relate to real world situations.
In language arts we set up See Saw. See Saw is a digital learning space that allows parents to access a digital portfolio of their child's work. The children got a chance to utilize technology to show what they knew about books they read. So far, we have included our MCBA digital book projects in See Saw. Some children have included pieces of writing. We've worked on Text Structures in guided reading, learning about cause-effect relationships. We've also done some summarizing, using cause-effect relationships to help us organize our thinking. We are currently learning about Point of View in narrative writing and are studying how to answer open response questions on the language arts MCAS test. The MCAS test for language arts will take place Tuesday, April 4-Thursday, April 6.
In Science we've created models that depict how the Earth, Sun, and stars are related to each other. We've also used these models to demonstrate how these relationships affect our seasons as well as what we see in the sky at different times of the year. The study of shadows, how they are formed and why they change size has also been part of our work. We've created multi-media book creator projects that demonstrate our understanding of all of these science concepts. Mrs. Jaffe, Mrs Lee and I have been collaborating on these projects and it has been rewarding to see the children working together to learn important space science content that is aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards.
We are currently learning about the causes leading up to the Revolutionary War in social studies. As with the space science unit this unit is being taught in homeroom.