Friday, September 28, 2012

This week in school...

Team 16 had a busy week!  We finished up our Geometry unit in math.  There was a lot of vocabulary to remember.  The students started a math vocabulary book to help them learn all the words.  We will continue to add new math vocabulary as the year goes on.  Ask your child the difference between a straight, right, acute, and obtuse angle?  I bet all 23 students can do this!  There is a link below to 3 songs to reinforce what polygons, quadrilaterals, and parallelograms are too.

We started studying about Native Americans from the Plains region.  The students embarked on their first iAdventure where they got to learn about the day in the life of a Native American boy and girl.  This adventure let them choose which links to click so students could focus on what interested them most.  Team 16 enjoyed this.  After the lesson, we had a short discussion on how we felt about this project.  Everyone was positive and liked the fact that they could choose their own path of learning and it was more fun and engaging than reading a paper packet.

Spelling will start next week.  This week, the students took the pre-test.  This helps me group the students and start them off at their "just right" level.  I will send home more information next week.  Students will get their word lists on Monday.  We have about 5 or 6 different spelling groups.  As we go along, if we find your child is in a group that is to easy or to hard, we will adjust accordingly.

During Literacy Studio this week, we reviewed Asking Questions, a comprehension skill that helps students understand their texts better and to think as they read.  Good readers are always thinking and asking questions.  We practiced as a whole class with our read aloud book.  Then the students practiced on their own with their independent reading books.  They wrote questions on sticky notes.  We will continue this next week and begin to slowly start book groups and strategy groups.

The students are getting comfortable with google apps now.  Next week, they will try to write their reading letters at home and share them with me by Friday.  Please let me know if you DON'T have internet access, I will make accommodations for them to write their letter in school.  Students need to be on the Happy Hollow website and they will click on an orange link near the top left that says 2012 google apps.  They click the link, log on (wps____21)  The middle part is their lunch code.  Then they will click on their already made reading letter document.  Hit the space bar a few times to leave space at the top to type their new reading letter.

Students are welcome to go on anytime at home.  I created 4 challenges as of now.  These focus on what we are learning now.  Students can also play any of the games available.  All focus on math skills and they are fun and engaging.  Their passwords should be in their agenda books. is new.  We tried it out last Friday and today.  This site is new, it only came out last year.  There are many beneficial aspects to the site.  Students practice reading and math skills at their level.  I am still working on modifying some levels, I think I may have figured it out, but it's still a work in progress.  I will eventually add homework assignments.  Parents can view their child's work.  Students can earn rewards as they play.  This is another option for students to go on at home for extra practice.  The best part is that the skills are based on the core curriculum standards.  It also adds a fun feature the students enjoy.  They can post appropriate messages to their friends on the class wall.  So far, everyone seems to enjoy this site.

Next week:  Spelling and Just Like Me start

Happy Weekend!

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