Saturday, March 23, 2013

Shakespeare and Starry Night

We had a creative week with our Shakespeare assembly and Starry Night art docent activity. Here's a recap of the other activities.

In reading we read a selection called Seal Surfer and focused on the skill of comparing and contrasting. We also discussed multiple meanings of words.

We completed Unit 18 in math this week. Some students are still having trouble visualizing and understanding volume. We also started Unit 19 on math involving money. So far, everyone has been doing quite well. You should brush up on regrouping in subtraction and long division.

In science we worked on understanding the perceived movement of the sun. We also practiced our compass skills.

For social studies this week we took turns being archeologists from the future. We then took a dive into the past by starting our Ohlone unit and spent time reading about this local native american tribe. Lastly, we brushed up on our atlas skills.

In writing we finished our leprechaun narrative final drafts. We also worked on our cursive letters and the rules for adding endings to verbs.

Here's what's coming up next week:
  • Reading: making judgements.
  • Math: topic 19 test on Thursday
  • Science: sunrise and sunset
  • Social Studies: Ohlone art and poetry
  • Writing: integrating feeling and descriptive words
Have a wonderful rest of your weekend!

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Happy St. Patrick's Day

Hi Everyone,

I hope you had a wonderful St. Patrick's Day full of four leaf clovers and leprechaun hunting. Here's what we were up to last week:

In reading we focused on distinguishing facts from opinions. We read the selection Night of the Pufflings and practiced identifying different facts.

For science we kicked off our next unit by learning the order of the planets. The students learned a fun mnemonic device to help them remember what we learned.

We looked at area, perimeter and volume of various objects in math last week. Students were able to apply their math skills to real world objects.

In social studies we discussed the significance of Lindon B. Johnson's address to congress about state voting laws. We used this as a review of our civil rights studies last trimester.

For writing last week we wrote the rough drafts for our Leprechaun narratives. We continued to work on dialogue and discussed alternatives for the word 'said' to add more detail to our stories.

Next week:

  • Reading: selection test on Friday 
  • Science: the sun!
  • Math: test on Tuesday
  • Social Studies: Time for Kids quiz Thursday
  • Writing: Leprechaun final drafts

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Prism Viewers

Hi Everybody,

We had another exciting week. We finished a lot of wonderful units this week and it will be great to dive into the third trimester next week. Here's what we were up to:

Aside from some very creative book report presentations, we read The Garden of Abdul Gasazi and we focused on identifying the important characteristics of the narrative story. We also discussed how to use dialog to make narratives more interesting.

In math we finished Topic 15 on long division. Most of our class did well, however, there are a few students who are still having difficulty with this topic. Long division is considered an introductory unit for third grade, and low scores did not impact overall math scores negatively. It's still good to review if you're struggling and be assured that students will get into mastery of this subject in fourth grade. We also took our benchmark test and the students did very well.

In science, we created our own prism viewers and went around the blacktop looking at various materials to see how the light source was being reflected. Afterwards, we read Dr. Seuss's book called "My many colored days" and discussed how color relates to feelings. Students then wrote sense poems about their color of choice.

In writing we worked on proper punctuation of quotation marks and studied the impacts of certain prefixes on words. We also continued to learn more capital cursive letters.

For social studies we read about how American children have an excess of stuff. Students reflected on their own number of possessions and we tied a discussion of how we could participate in the school book drive next week.

Here's what's coming up next week:

  • Reading: differentiate between fact and opinion
  • Math: topic 16 on perimeter, area and volume
  • Science: finish matter and take quiz
  • Writing: integrate dialog into personal narratives
  • Social Studies: Time for kids quiz

Reports are coming home on Friday. Have a great rest of the weekend!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Light, Division, and Topic Sentences

Hi Everyone!

We had an exciting week back from the break and we still have a lot to go before we wrap up the trimester in a week. Expect to see report cards coming home on the 15th. Here's what we did this week:

In Math we started long division. Since it is the student's first experience with the subject, several of them are still trying to grasp all the concepts. I encourage you to practice long division at home and continue working on your multiplication facts because of their relation to long division.

We continued to study light and color in science this week. We also started investigating matter. We sorted objects into groups of solids, liquids, and gases. We also discussed the properties of each of these phases.

In social studies we learned more about the underground railroad. We also talked about significant women in history.

For reading this week we discussed how to use inferences to draw conclusions while reading stories. We read a selection called Raising Dragons. We also worked on the meaning that suffixes have.

We wrote an expository paragraph about why we're lucky for our writing practice. We also learned about a new form of topic sentences called an Occasion Position Topic Sentence. For grammar, we worked on subject verb agreement in the present tense.

Here's what's coming up next week:

Math: long division test Thursday, benchmark test Friday
Science: mass and volume
Social Studies: Time for kids quiz Thursday
Reading: selection test Friday
Writing: personal narrative