Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Blustery Day

Today was a abnormally warm, very windy day: perfect tornado weather.  Tornado warnings are popping up all of the area.  To prepare, the class had a tornado drill!  We calmy and carefully walked into the back bathroom (no windows), where we knelt against the wall.  The tornado siren can be heard very clearly in this building, so if it goes off... we will be ready!

Spelling & Handwriting-  This week's spelling list was full of words ending with the sounds "ink", "ank", "unk", and "ing".  To practice these, the students came up with rhyming words for each sound.  Then, each of them came up with their own poem, using the words from one of the sound lists!  It was a fun way to practice spelling, handwriting, and writing, in one swoop!

Art-  In art class today, Ms. Bev pulled out the homemade paper from last week's project.  The class used the homemade paper, as well as construction paper, scrapbooking paper, ribbon, and buttons, to create special Valentines!

History-  Ms. Allison began today's history class by talking about the Roman culture.  At home, the class read about Romans, Hannibal, and his elephants.  Because Romans wore money as jewelry, the class created their own penny jewelry.   My Allison then taught the class the meaning of "trade".  Each student was given a Roman sign.  The Romans were each given some money to spend at Carthage.  Our little shop at Carthage had trinkets for trade.  (The gumballs were just for show!)  Although the Romans were happy as little clams, Hannibal was not!  Hannibal was upset at the Romans for taking all of the good trinkets... and he attacked the Romans!  They discussed the role of elephants in Hannibal's army.  Ms. Allison used the demonstration to help the class remember all that they learned at home.  To top it all off, they made elephant ear pastries!

Math-  In math today, I used multilink cubes to represent two digit numbers.  We then added and subtracted single digit numbers, which did not result in regrouping.  We practiced with this concept until everyone was comfortable looking to the ones group to see if the number being subtracted could be taken only from the ones group.  They were easily adding and subtracting these numbers, mentally.  We will be building upon this concept with online videos, as we begin to regroup!

Today, after a few minor social speed bumps, I decided to take some time and talk to the class about respecting others and being kind.  So often, children are simply excited or happy, but they act in ways that do not take the feelings of others into consideration.  Today, this involved a couple instances of keeping hands to ourselves, an instance of closing the door to keep someone out, and one unintentionally rude remark to a teacher.  None of these cases involved malicious intent.  Sometimes, kids just get caught up in the excitement or fun... and do not think of others.  I cannot help but use every opportunity for a life lesson!  The class and I discussed what it means to be a good friend, what it means to be kind, and how important it is to respect others.  The class then worked on a short writing assignment, where they could write about what it means to be kind, or to respect others.  It was a great way to take the emotions of the morning and vent them onto paper.  Writing can be therapy.  Writing can help us to express our feelings, and to internalize a lesson, applying it to our lives.  The class really took this seriously, and did a wonderful job!  This class that we have is not just to learn science, history, or grammar.  It is a class that teaches how to learn in a group of peers! 

Students jump into action, showing kindness when the contents of a classmate's bookbag spilled onto the floor!

Science-  The first thing that the class did in science class was show off their amazing butterfly models!  They were creative, detailed, and well thought out!  Next, everyone shared their writing assignment on the life cycle of a frog.  Ms. Caroline taught the class more about cycles today:  life cycles and the water cycle.  At home, they will be finishing up chapter 10.  Beginning next week, the class will continue with biology, outside of the textbook.  Ms. Carline will be beginning her lessons on Georgia ecology!  Oh, and our caterpillars are starting to prepare for forming their chrysalises! 

After our science lesson, we took some time to review what we learned in math class.  The concept of adding and subtracting 10 from a two digit number ( 25-10 = 15 ) and subtracting a single digit from a two digit number, without regrouping (25-2= 23) is much easier than it seems for children.  I wanted to touch on this again before they complete their at home assignments.

We began our grammar lesson on common and proper nouns, as well as the abbreviations for the months of the year, when the weather reports started to show bad storms heading our way.  I contacted parents and we cut the day a little short.  We missed out on an alphabetical order review, but that is way less important than getting families home safe and sound before the storm!

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