Happy November! I did not blog last week as I was in Sarnia, Canada for the CCM World Invite Hockey Tournament. Unfortunately, Clayton’s team did not do well. The good news is he is now plating for the Grand Haven/Spring Lake varsity team!
Your child did blog last week, and as always I encourage you to read their blogs and comment on what they wrote. Student Blogs
This week in Reading Workshop we have begun our first nonfiction unit. Students have been selecting nonfiction books to read for their independent reading time in class and for their 20 minutes of reading at home. During the course of this unit ALL students are expected to read nonfiction for their 20 minutes of reading homework each night. We discussed the difference between reading nonfiction like you are waiting for the dentist (flipping through pages) and reading to learn. We decided that when we read nonfiction for our school work we want to be readers that learn. Students also learned that good readers preview nonfiction before reading in order to warm up their minds and connect the topic they are reading about to their lives. Students also worked on summarizing chunks of text by using the main idea and supporting details.
We also began a new unit in Writing Workshop, Essays. Students had a mini essay bootcamp where we flash drafted an essay about why we love ice cream. We than began generating ideas for our own essay. Students thought of a person, place or an object that is important to them and then started to write down their thoughts about that person, place or object. We will continue to work on generating ideas before we choose 1 idea to draft into an essay. Students also blogged about their week in school (don’t forget to read your child’s blog!).
In Math this week we continued to practice different strategies for multiplying 2 digit by 2 digit numbers. We practiced rounding to make estimates and finding compatible numbers (numbers close to the actual number that are easy for us to multiply mentally) to make estimates,arrays and area models to multiply 2 digits by 2 digits, the partial products method and the shortcut. Students took the online practice test for this topic on Thursday. Students do have some review homework this weekend as the math test is on Monday.
This week in Science we explored food chains and food webs. Students drew simple food chains and played a food chain card game. We also looked at many different food webs and discussed what happens to the ecosystem when one part is taken out of the food web. Last we in science we observed the last two species in our pond habitat. We studied the pond snail and the guppy to see what physical characteristics they have that help them survive in their environment.
We observed the anniversary of the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald by reading a book about the last voyage and listening to the song “The Wreck of the Edmnd Fitzgerald”. We also observed Veteran’s Day today, we read the book The Poppy Lady and watched a brief video that explained why we have the Veteran’s Day holiday.
Typically the students and I only blog about lessons from our 4 main subject areas that we study, but we actually do a lot more in our day that we do not always blog about. We have Art, Gym, Music and STEM, and you know that we blog, but did you know that we also learn 6 new vocabulary words a week? We also read a picture book together and talk about different ways to comprehend text. We read fiction and nonfiction picture books, textbooks, and articles. We also have been learning how to write in cursive by learning the cursive alphabet and writing words in cursive! We are even getting extra practice in math that is differentiated for each student, or we practice the computation part of what we are learning in class. We have also added in Word Study and Conventions of language! Everything we do falls under one of the core subjects like reading, writing, math, or science and works toward making us better at those subjects! (Social Studies will replace Science in January).
Monday and Tuesday, November 20 and 21 – 1/2 days
Wednesday – Friday, November 22-24 – Thanksgiving Break – no school
December 21- January 2 – Winter Break