Friday, December 7, 2012

Classroom Update

Reading Workshop
Students are working on improving their comprehension by connecting to a story. We have been working on text to self connections, where students listen to or read a story and have a personal connection to the story. I have been modeling phases like, When I read that it reminded me of…” or when I read that page it made me think of…” When students have a personal connection to a story, it helps them to better understand what is happening in the story. Students have been using sticky notes during independent reading time with books from their book boxes. They write their text-to-self connections down on the sticky note, if they have one, and stick it inside their book.

Writing Workshop
This week, students have been working on acrostic poems about snow. We brainstormed s words, n words, o words, and w words about snow and winter. Some great examples the students came up with are: sleigh bells, nighttime, open, and wonderland. Students wrote their snow words on snowflakes.

Math Workshop
We are continuing Unit 4 in our Everyday Math Unit. This week, we worked on temperature, shopping at the grocery store, making ballpark estimates and measurement. Students became more familiar with tape measures. They learned how to properly read them, making sure where to start at 0. Students learned to read inches and centimeters on a tape measure, noting that inches are bigger than centimeters. Students used tape measure to measure objects around the classroom.

We worked with ballpark estimates to solve addition problems. Students learned to round the numbers to the nearest tens before adding, and then we compared the estimate to the real answer to see how close we were! The rule for ballpark estimates is: 4 and below = round down to the nearest ten, 5 and above = round up to the nearest ten

We started the air portion of the Weather, Air, and Wind unit this week. Students brainstormed what they already know about air. They asked questions, like how does air move? We will be doing air experiments to help students have a better understanding of what air is and how it moves. Students used a balloon, a straw, a feather, a Styrofoam ball, a paper, and a cotton ball to experiment with how air moves things.

Students used a vial, paper towel, and a Styrofoam ball in water to see if they could figure out how air could keep the paper towel dry inside the vial.
Social Studies
This week we reviewed maps and took the Unit 3 "How to read Maps" test. Students did very well on the test! The next unit of study for social studies is about Geography. Students will read physical maps and learn about different kinds of landforms.

Next week is going to be Grinch Week, so don't get grouchy over the weekend! : )

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