Friday 10/27/17

Here are a few highlights from the past two weeks (including the short week):

  • In Reading Workshop, all students are enjoying their independent reading books. Last week we began independent reading response letters. These are letters they write to me about recent books they've finished and give students and opportunity to think more deeply about their books.
  • Also in Reading Workshop, all students have created reading goals for the year AND are currently in the middle of doing a week long track of their reading, both at school and home. We will use these to explore our own reading patterns.
  • We had our second Four Winds session with Susan Sawyer and Charlotte Rosendahl this week. Students learned about decomposers!
  • We didn't do Outdoor Learning on the short week, but this past week we went in the woods to revisit our adopted trees. All students observed changes and had a chance to do some creative writing while at the tree.
  • We continued with our first read aloud book: Wonder, by RJ Palacio. It's about a 5th grade boy who has a severe facial deformity and is headed to school for the first time in his life. The book has some wonderful lessons about acceptance, different points of view, and choosing kindness. It's one of my favorite read alouds to start the year.
  • We finished our first round of Poetry Workshop. Everyone finished their poems, did a writing reflection, and did leaf rubbings on them from leaves we collected outside! A copy should have come home this week, but you can see them on the bulletin board in the hall.
  • In Math, we began small group rotation work. Right now, we have 3 groups- two 5th grade groups and one 6th grade group. All groups rotate between a small group lesson with me, independent work, and math games or other work with Mr. K (our paraeducator) Our units right now:
        • 5th Grade- Place value and decimal work
        • 6th Grade- Statistics
  • All students are continuing their weekly independent typing instruction, using This involves lessons and games to help strengthen typing skills.
  • Our class helped out quite a bit this week with the Pumpkin Walk. On Monday, they not only carved their own pumpkins, but also helped the K/1 class carve too! Then on Friday, we brought ALL the carved pumpkins out to the trail to help set them up for the walk!
  • In Science, we returned to talking about science practices and focused on scientific models- what they are and what scientists use them for.
  • Students continued this week with "Friday Green Sheets". We've begun talking about the importance of reflection and the role it plays in learning... These Green Sheets will not only help students reflect on their week, but also will serve as a way to communicate some of that reflection to parents.
  • We did not use SeeSaw this week, but all students went home with their Autumn Comes poem to share with you.
  • Lastly, I want to thank you all for attending our Fall Family Conferences this past week! It was great to hear and share student strengths and areas for growth and do some goal setting brainstorming together!

Some upcoming dates, important notes, and things to look forward to in the coming weeks:

  • Our Class Leads All School Morning Meeting- Wednesday 11/8/17
  • No School- Friday 11/10/17
  • In Reading Workshop, students will continue independent reading. We will write Response Letters again this week (they are usually every other week) which will focus on summarizing.
  • We will continue with math rotations in small groups.
        • 5th Grade- Decimals
        • 6th Grade- Statistics
  • We have finished up most of our work with the carrots: observation, data collection, decimal work, scientific drawing, asking and answering questions, etc... Now all that's left is to do some cooking with them!
  • We will finish up with our learning about scientific practices this coming week (or early the week after) and move into a new unit. I am hoping that this will be where we do our first independent learning project of the year.
  • We will have Outdoor Learning this coming week! Place and topic TBD. The current weather forecast is looking like no rain, BUT it's looking to be chilly. Please be sure to send warm gear!
  • We will move back into Writing Workshop and learn more strategies for generating writing and make some decisions about our next writing piece.
  • We will begin Word Study this coming week! This will include both spelling and vocabulary work! This will be through a combination of small group work and independent work. We will be using Spelling City for some of this independent practice.
  • We will continue to use the Smarties activity to help us do some goal setting work for the year.