Friday, February 16, 2018

Reading Non-Fiction/note taking
Happy Friday!

This was a busy week! We continued to put the last details in our persuasive essays and worked with our revision buddies to revise and edit our work before turning in our final pieces on Thursday.

Revision work

With the end of our persuasive essays, we began our unit on European Exploration. While the students are learning about the effects of exploration on the world in Social Studies, we are learning how to read non-fiction articles for information and note taking to prepare for our explorer essays and project which will start the week we return from the break. Our research will come from the questions the students generated from the statement: European Explorers Changed The World. This statement will guide our research as we come to understand the importance of exploration in our world.

In Reader's Workshop, we continued our work with "theme" as we also came to the end of our read aloud. Be sure to ask your student about how our main characters Gabe and Frita learned how you can overcome your fears and all things are possible with the love and support of your family and friends.

We ended our week with a fun afternoon of "Jail" ball with Mr. Smith and Mrs. Rollins in the gym and our fun and wonderful afternoon visit with our new senior friends at Bayside Senior Living. We presented them with Valentines and visited with them about their life as a child. We learned about so many historical events and changes that have taken place in their lives.They also shared their life lessons and advice for us as we grow(see below).

Friday, February 9, 2018

Happy Friday!
We started our week in the library with Ms. Sturh as we began the first lesson of our Exploration research project. Our lesson began with the first step of the inquiry process when the students brainstormed in groups the questions they had regarding the statement, "European Explorers Changed The World." During our second lesson, students brainstormed questions after viewing a few exploration pieces of art. These questions will drive their individual research projects on a famous explorer. 

As our week came to an end, we finished our persuasive essays and were ready to revise with partners before completing our final drafts. This is a very important part of the writing process as students practice being critical helpers as well as accepting helpful suggestions to better their writing.

Next week, we will continue our focus on European Exploration while we practice reading and note taking from nonfiction literature.
Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, February 2, 2018

Happy Friday!
Working Together

Our students are amazing people! Their kind hearts and loving spirit make school a wonderful place to be every day. Their support for each other in times of need shined this week. With lots of hugs, we were able to stay our course and enjoy our learning.

In Writer's Workshop, we continued to work on our persuasive essays with our focus on "counterarguments" to our ideas. Students had a chance to work with a partner and help each other see the other side of their essay thinking. This helped them to address those thoughts in their writing in order to make a stronger claim.

We are enjoying our read aloud, The Liberation Of Gabriel King. While we enjoy this wonderful story about facing our fears with family and friendship for support, our focus was on the protagonist and antagonist in our literature. 

We ended our week with Valentine making with our 8th-grade buddies. These valentines will see their way to our senior friends at Bay Square Assisted Living Center. 

Have a wonderful Weekend!

Friday, January 26, 2018

writing work
Happy Friday!
Student writers were hard at work on their persuasive writing essays. We focused on following our essay organizers. We drafted the body paragraphs and then had a chance to meet with peers to be helpful critics. Students shared what progress they had made, any parts of their writing were they may have needed advice, and celebrated what work they had completed. Later in the week, we began to look at "great leads" of a persuasive essay. We saw samples of starting with a quote, a personal story, a shocking statement or fact, or maybe a question. We also began discussing the term "counterclaim."

In Reader's Workshop, we continued our work on "theme" and students were introduced to the "protagonist" and the "antagonist" in a story. We are also looking at character analyzing in our read aloud, The Liberation of Gabriel King. This is a wonderful story about friendship and the love of family as our country moved on beyond the Civil Rights movement through 1976.
Gabriel King was a born chicken. He’s afraid of spiders, corpses, loose cows, and just about everything related to the fifth grade. Gabe’s best friend, Frita Wilson, thinks Gabe needs some liberating from his fears. Frita knows something about being brave— she’s the only black kid in school in a town with an active Ku Klux Klan. Together Gabe and Frita are going to spend the summer of 1976 facing down the fears on Gabe’s list. But it turns out that Frita has her own list, and while she’s helping Gabe confront his fears, she’s avoiding the thing that scares her the most.

On Tuesday, we celebrated National Reading Day. We shared many books that students are reading and we read a picture book by Patricia Polacco called Aunt Chip and The Triple Creek Dam Affair. This wonderful story showed the decay of a town when the library closed and people began to spend all of their free time on electronics. The books became a long lost memory. We also made a 5th-grade bookshelf of all the books we have loved so far this year.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, January 19, 2018

Happy Friday!

Another crazy week! Holidays and snow days...Oh, my! What little time we had this week were very productive. We continued our lessons on "theme" while enjoying a wonderful picture book by Patricia Polacco titled, The Junkyard Wonders.
When young Trisha finds out her class at the new school is known as "The Junkyard," she is devastated. She moved from her old town so she wouldn't be in a special class anymore! But then she meets her teacher, the quirky and invincible Mrs. Peterson, and her classmates, an oddly brilliant group of students each with his or her own unique talent. And it is here in The Junkyard that Trisha learns the true meaning of genius, and that this group of misfits are, in fact, wonders, all of them.

Students also researched the Watergate scandal, Jimmy Carter, and the Bicentennial Celebration. This research perked our interest as we began our historical fiction read aloud, The Liberation of Gabriel King. We will continue to focus on the theme as well as begin to look at the protagonist and antagonist in literature.

Student writers began their rough draft of their persuasive essays. Our focus was on writing a "grabber" lead, perfecting our thesis statement, and creating three strong reasons to support our thesis. Next week we will focus on the writing of the body of the essay. 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, January 12, 2018

Happy Friday!
We started our week in Writer's Workshop with a focus on persuasive/editorial writing. We looked at samples of a persuasive writing and focused on the structure as well as how important the thesis statement is in this piece of writing. As a whole class, we brainstormed changes or concerns we have about our school community and the town of Yarmouth. Students spent a few days discussing their thesis ideas and working on a planning organizer to help them plan their writing, paragraph by paragraph.
Next week we will look at how to add a counterclaim to their writing as well as facts to support their claim.

In Reader's Workshop, we continued our study of the theme in a piece of literature. We discussed how we focus on the growth of a character through a story and the lesson they learned. We also talked about the "me" message or the lesson that the author gave us, what stuck with you at the end of the story? Students continued their study of character development in a story with a focus on character traits. We shared our learning with these character traits in a letter format in our Reader Notebooks. 

Friday, January 5, 2018

Happy Friday!

Snow days and below freezing temps controlled our week but we were able to stay focused and get some work done.

In Reader's Workshop, we began our unit on finding the "theme" in the books we read. We focused our short week on knowing the difference between plot and theme. We read many picture books to find the theme and lesson the author may have been teaching through the actions of the main character. We will continue to practice with short stories before we tackle novels.
Indoor recess fun

We started reading samples of editorial/persuasive writing essays to prepare to write our own essays in Writer' Workshop. Students will be writing about issues, concerns, or ways to better their community. We discussed how important the persuasive writing skill is in their adult working life and how these writings are used in many careers. Next week we will begin to brainstorm and organize their thoughts for writing. 
Have a wonderful weekend!