Veinticuatro de Octubre = October 24
As I wrote the subject heading for this blog post, I was reminded of my time in Ecuador. At the school I taught, the teachers performed a play or dance for the students at the end of each 8-week teaching cycle. One time, we performed popular Latin dances for the students. This was quite a stretch for me, but ended up being one of my favorite performances. (Believe it or not, I actually have video to prove that I did it!) One of the songs is called “24 de Mayo” (May 24) because this Independence Day in Ecuador, which is why today’s date reminded me of my time in Ecuador. If you’d like to hear the hip version of the Independence Day song, click here. Enjoy the music while you read the rest of this post . . . it will make you happy, I promise. 🙂
Onto the topics in this week’s blog post:
- Conversation Starters
- Learning Buddies
- Welcome to Second Quarter
- iPads at Home: Online Math
- Math Learning . . . for Ms. Turken!
- Book Challenge
- Common Core Connection
- Learning about Fifth Graders
- Questions for You!
- Last Friday, you met with your second grade Learning Buddies. What did you do to be a role model for your buddy? What things did you do to teach your buddy about non-fiction text features?
- Tell me what you know about adding and subtracting decimals. For example: .45 + .52, 1.25 + 2.34, .89 – .35, and 4.29 – 2.06. Also, how do you say each of these numbers correctly?
- Tell me about the learning you are doing in math to help Ms. Turken buy turtle treats for Bradford.
- What happened in your chapter book this week? What inferences did you make while listening to the chapter book?
- You wrote a letter to a veteran today. Tell me what you wrote about and why it is important to spend time thanking veterans for their service.
Learning Buddies: Last Friday, we met with our second grade Learning Buddies again. We had such a wonderful time. The children did two things together. First, each student read a nonfiction text about spiders. The fifth graders helped to teach each second grader about nonfiction text features and either read the book to their buddy or read with them. Then, they each made a spiderweb craft. Here are some pictures from our time together.
Welcome to Second Quarter: Wow . . . is it really second quarter already?!?! I am excited to embark on this journey with your fifth grader because we all continue to learn so much everyday. Report cards from first quarter are expected to go home on Wednesday, November 6. Thank you for being patient with report cards while Kirkwood launches a new, online grade book system.
iPads at Home: Online Math: As many of you know, the iPads have started to go home this week after your child returned the district form and completes a few online activities for Mrs. Sisul. (By the way, if your child has not done this already, there is still time next week!) Once your fifth grader takes his or her iPad home, there are several opportunities for learning. This week, I want to focus on math. In class, we do online math during a small portion of our math rotations. We had math rotations for the past few weeks and will do so again in a couple of weeks. Two of the online math activities we do are xtraMath and Sumdog. I would like for your child to have access to these at home. In order to do so, it is rather easy. For xtraMath, go to xtramath.org and click on the “Sign In” tab on the top, right of the page. Then, click on the purple “Classroom” tab. Once you are here, our classroom code is 9TA9JHAA. Then, you will see my name and after you click on this, your fifth grader can click on his or her name. This is a great site to work on basic facts. Another great math site is at sumdog.com and your child simply needs to login with his or her username and password. These are attached when you click here: SUMDOG.USERNAMES.csv This is another great math site to work on basic facts, as well as other math skills.
Math Learning . . . for Ms. Turken!: This was a HARD week for me because I was out of the classroom for two days to attend professional development workshops. I really missed the children at Robinson and was excited to return today! While I was gone, I learned A LOT about math from other teachers, as well as a math specialist who came all the way from New York to share her brilliant math thinking with us. One important outcome from the two days were for teachers to use real world contexts to encourage deep and powerful math thinking, in order to best prepare our children for today and their future. We also discussed several truths about math and solved MANY problems with partners and individually. Below, you can see some of the “thinking sheets” used during one of the days! Professional development like this is definitely not a walk in the park, but a great way to spend my days so I can work on becoming a better teacher for your child.
Book Challenge: Well . . . it’s official! The Book Challenge will be introduced tomorrow – Friday. A letter will go home with your fifth grader to explain the challenge further. Below is the basic information you need to support your fifth grader on this journey so you know the quantity of each genre expected to be read by the end of the school year. Each child will keep track of his or her reading in the classroom, so you don’t have to worry about that at all. I would like for you to discuss the books your child is reading and what he or she is learning from the variety of genres. Please let me know if you have any questions along the way.
Common Core Connection: This week, I decided to take you directly to the site with the Common Core Standards. Click here to head to that site. On this website, you will find a wealth of information which might be particularly interesting after the small pieces of information you have been led to through on our classroom blog over the past few weeks.
Learning about Fifth Graders: Briefly, I found this article recently and thought you might find it interesting too. Check it out and let us know what you think!
Questions for You! Thanks for jumping into second quarter with us and reading about everything that has been happening in fifth grade. Thank you to those of you who answered our questions from last week. Now, I have some more for you:
- What are some of your favorite memories of elementary school? Do you remember things from fifth grade specifically?
- What genre of books do you like to read best? Would you consider joining us on our 30 Book Challenge? Why or why not?
Have a wonderful, fall weekend. Go Cardinals!