Friday, February 27, 2015

Sample book of Explorer project
Happy Friday!

We had a busy week after returning from Winter Break. The students continued their eager research on their Explorers using many different resources from books to websites. They are loving the fun adventures of their explorer and even some gruesome facts have emerged to their surprise. This week we continued with the "dot jot" note taking. This note taking will help them to paraphrase the information in their own words when they begin their writing. Some students were able to begin typing their writing in their Google drives on Friday with the help of an online graphic organizer. Most students will begin this step on Monday.
    
"Tweeting"
Our class also continued our reading of The Watson's go to Birmingham-1963. We've been looking at the many complex characters in this book and trying to understand why they do the things they do and say. We had fun with a "Tweeting" lesson for two days where the students read a passage from the book in groups and then could tweet their thoughts or comments about a character or to a character. Each group of students moved around the room tweeting their thoughts to each other and
Tweeting results..Great Thinkers!
communicating through their written thoughts about characters. The room was silent! In the end, we discussed our thinking and came to understand character behavior with the help of each other. The kids did a fantastic job expressing themselves, and enjoying the process.

Two important notes are coming home today about Colonial Craft day. Please check with your child about these notes.
Colonial Craft Day...March 12th.
Enjoy your weekend!   

Friday, February 13, 2015

Don't Forget To...
Have a wonderful Winter Break!
Enjoy the snow!

Our week was filled with Explorer learning and research.
We started our week with two library lessons focused on using the Inquiry Process with our research. The students had a wonderful discussion on how we use the Inquiry process in our daily lives and how those steps will be applied with our explorer research. Students received the names of their explorer and then together we drafted up a list of questions we would want to know and have answered about their explorer through their research.
Before we began the research, we also had a lesson on the importance of a bibliography and how to build one when researching.We ended the week with lessons on note taking and not copying information. We are now on our way and deep into the Age of Exploration.  

Our work in our Reader's Notebooks continued with this weeks focus on "Point of View." Through the read-a-loud books we have read, we discussed first person and third person point of view. We took more time to look at "limited" third person(Author knows the feelings of one character) and "Omniscient" third person(Author knows the feelings of all the characters. We looked at books and identified which point of view our books have been written in. We also discussed how the author's point of view about a subject dictates the tone or overall feeling of the story. 

Reminders:
Spirit Week is approaching!
Lets have fun!
Daily Themes:
  • Monday 2/23:  Dress in Blue & white (Spirit day)
  • Tuesday 2/24: Dress Wacky (hair & clothing)
  • Wednesday 2/25: Dress in the style of your favorite Foreign Country/Culture
  • Thursday 2/26: Dress like a Mainer (plaid/flannel clothing, LL Bean boats/clothing, fishing/lobster clothing)
  • Friday 2/27: Dress Like someone you like or admire (book character, movie character, superhero, your favorite teacher, a police person  etc.....)
 

 

Friday, February 6, 2015

Happy Friday!
As we ended our week, the students put the finishing touches on their essays to prepare to share with the class. They all did a great job with their effort and "stick to it" attitudes. Bravo!

We also began our "Age of Exploration Unit in Social Studies and Writing. The students and I had a mini kick-off celebration to our explorer research projects. Each student will be researching and note taking to prepare to write a picture book about their explorer. These picture books will include drawings and information about their explorers early life, goals, accomplishments, and voyages. We had our first research practice with Ms. Stuhr in the library. She taught us how to use the library web page and a program called "Marvel" to research and use as one of our resources. Next week, we will practice note taking and learn about the other resources that are available to us while working on this piece of writing. The students and I agreed that this project will take a lot of grit. We are excited to get started!
 
In our Reader's notebooks, we began looking at "Point of View" in literature. The students listened to a picture book called, Voices. The story takes place in a park but each page has a different character in the park tell what was going on in the park from each of their points of view. The kids had a chance to discuss what first-person, second-person, and third-person point of view means in a story. Who is telling the story? Is it a character? Is it a narrator? How do you know? What key words to look for so you know who is telling the story. As we practice this literary element, students will have an opportunity to write about the point of view in their own books and ask themselves how a story might change if another character's point of view were to be used. As fifth grade readers we will begin to look at how a narrator's point of view influences how events are described in a story. 
REMINDERS:
Spirit Week is approaching!
Lets have fun!
Daily Themes:
  • Monday 2/23:  Dress in Blue & white (Spirit day)
  • Tuesday 2/24: Dress Wacky (hair & clothing)
  • Wednesday 2/25: Dress in the style of your favorite Foreign Country/Culture
  • Thursday 2/26: Dress like a Mainer (plaid/flannel clothing, LL Bean boats/clothing, fishing/lobster clothing)
  • Friday 2/27: Dress Like someone you like or admire (book character, movie character, superhero, your favorite teacher, a police person  etc.....)