Tuesday, April 4, 2017

April Fools!

Hello Families!

Wow, "spring" has snuck up on us already. I use quotations because to look outside you might have trouble determining the season. Spring has commenced in our classroom, too, as we've had a few interesting events and curricular changes over the last few weeks. Here we go!

Reading: We're deep into our informational reading unit (non-fiction). We've been talking about how we read informational books differently than narrative books, and also about some very non-fiction specific strategies. One of the specific things we've been identifying are non-fiction text features, by quizzing each other and seeking examples in our reading. We then did a class Kahoot! to see who could remember the most of them the fastest. It was quite exciting!

Writing: We have also started our informational writing unit. We time these two units to coincide so we can cross-pollinate ideas from reading to writing. Each kiddo will be making an informational book with an introduction, conclusion, and four chapters. You will be getting the typed, first-draft of each of these sections periodically (as they get typed up) in your child's take-home folder. Please take a few minutes to sit down together and make any changes directly onto this paper, so your author can bring it back to school and make those changes on the digital copy. The finished products should be fantastic.

Math: We are smack in the middle of some fraction-tastic math lessons. Fractions help us figure out what part of a whole we are describing. Your mathmagican should be familiar with words like equivalent, numerator, and denominator.

March Mammal Madness: We just concluded March Mammal Madness 2017. It was a wild ride. Mr. Curry was the far-and-away winner with over 100 points! We're still tallying the rest of the class points and using the data to make various bar, line, and pie graphs as we see where different brackets worked well and others fell apart. We learned lots about the adaptations of different mammals as well as the role of chance in survival. I, personally, we elated to see my honey badger make it to the finals, but devastated when the short-faced bear took the championship!

Here we are with our brackets:

BreakoutEDU: We took part in an epic Star Wars-themed Breakout last week! The teachers set the scene by dressing up, darkening the third grade wing, and regaling our padawans with Star Wars music as they returned from the Jedi Temple (also known as the lunch room). Despite a significant penalty for some early searching, we still worked great as a team and broke out in short order. Breakouts emphasize problem-solving and teamwork, two skills that were on prominent display in our class.

That's all for now!
Busy times ahead,

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